bryan-faces-celebrationWith RAW in Chicago tonight, you can certainly expect CM Punk to get a loud reaction when he comes out. More importantly, how will he address the addition of a New Paul Heyman Guy? How will he react to the Heyman-Ryback bromance? Will Curtis Axel ever be anything more then the third wheel? What will WWE do this week to compete with Monday Night Football? How will the Hunter Power Trip react to the faces standing up to his tyranny? Which member of the Rhodes family will Stephanie belittle this week? More importantly how will readers of this column react to a change in format with the brand new Questionable category?

Labor Relations: The guys in the back certainly had to make some sort of stand sooner rather later. This is much better then the last time Creative had a ‘labor unrest’ storyline and had the wrestlers ‘walk out’ on HHH. Thankfully it’s management being portrayed as the villain this time around and H certainly brought The Shovel down on the dissenters. Or it would seem not since he gave them an 11 on 3 Handicap  Elimination match against The Shield. At least H didn’t somehow try something sinister to help the Hounds of Justice, but let it go on. Of course Bryan got the deciding pin when he eliminated Rollins with Ziggler and The Usos still in it, but it was still a pretty good match.

Hometown Hero: Given what happened to Miz last week in his hometown, perhaps Punk should be worried. Then again this is CM Punk in Chicago we’re talking about. He famously won the WWE Title at MITB, but he also won the IC title in his hometown a few years back. The reaction he gets when his music hits is deafening, but we already knew that was going to happen. What we perhaps didn’t realize was that even Punk is not immune to hometown beatdowns with Ryback and Axel did the (dis)honors. It was a very strong segment with great mic work from both Punk and Heyman. Even better it might have gotten people interested in the Punk-Ryback recycled feud.

The Shield: Who cares that they’re reduced to HHH’s henchman? They finally delivered one of their signature backstage promos! We haven’t seen that in ages! Plus during the Handicap Elimination Match, Reigns Speared 3 guys in like 15 seconds!

JBL Great Quote of The Night: ‘You’re turning simple arithmetic into calculus, Michael!’ During one of the announcers’ numerous discussion on the math of the 11 on 3 handicap match.


Apping: Everyone knows that WWE wants more people to download their app given that they tell you 4377 times during RAW. It is what is and just something viewers have to deal with it. However, it got even worse tonight because not only do they give you step-by-step directions to download it, but they gave a detailed summary of some of the app’s features. So not only are they desperate for people to use it, but they apparently think their fans don’t know how to download an app. Surely that is a winning marketing tactic.

Hometown Hero: It almost seems wrong to criticize Punk in his hometown, but was it really necessary for him to lay it on that thick with the references to the Blackhawks’ Stanley Cup run? It would’ve been alright for him to give a shout out to them, but the analogy between the team’s struggles and Punk’s just went on too long. Plus, Punk doesn’t seem like the guy who would go the cheap pop route that much.


Comeuppance: Questionable things on RAW usually involve the booking. When it comes to the Divas, the booking always seems to be questionable. While this AJ vs Total Divas feud is an actual story, it’s fraught with its own inconsistencies. Natalya and The Bellas are now on the same page? Stephanie is verbally putting AJ in her place instead of a face Diva beating her in match?