If I had to recommend this show to someone, I’d say to watch the first hour and 20 minutes, then stop. I’m in complete shock with how terrible this go home show was.
This promo required a lot of work in order for it to be effective. I can’t speak for everybody, but I knew Lesnar wasn’t there in person. Ambrose has hit every note in this feud, except his words in this promo felt bland. To make matters worse, Stephanie’s lines also sounded quite generic. Why couldn’t the “Fatal Five Way” be a fatal four way? It was definitely a lame excuse to have a play on words with “F5”.
Fatal Five Way (Dean Ambrose vs Kevin Owens vs Stardust vs Tyler Breeze vs Dolph Ziggler)
Breeze and Stardust? I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. All I can say is that it was a good surprise. Of course one of them were there to simply eat the pin. The opening promo was lackluster, but this match made up for it. It was complete chaos, and that’s what fans need to get hooked. The constant change of competitors in the ring made it easy to keep up, especially since it was a 20+ minute match. Was anybody else shocked with the result of this contest? Because I was. I figured that Ziggler and Owens were involved to distract one another, leading to an Ambrose victory. This was a smart move by the WWE in terms of booking Ambrose. I’d say this gives Dean a better chance for going over on Sunday.
Big E vs Mark Henry
Let me get this straight, the Tag Team Champions are only being advertised for a promo at Fastlane? This a strong indication that the WWE needs some new and credible tag teams. They pushed the New Day so hard that they managed to kill all competition for them. That promo at Fastlane should be solely used to setup the New Day’s Mania program.
I loved how they continued their program with Mark Henry. It gives them a chance to be entertaining with context. It also helped that Big E and Henry had some decent chemistry in the ring. It seems like Mark had a blunder when setting up for the big ending, but that didn’t change my opinion of the contest. It was still fun to watch.
Charlotte/Brie Bella Promo
Some people might have been against Charlotte using Bryan to gain heat, but I thought she did a phenomenal job. She was awesome at being a despicable heel, along with carrying this entire promo. According to Dave Meltzer, Brie might be leaving the WWE soon, so this could be her last feud. If this is her last program, at least she’s given a solid story with a chance of getting over with the crowd.
AJ Styles vs The Miz
I’d like to mention how great Jericho was on commentary for this match. He continued to put over both competitors, while delivering funny lines. I’m curious about what the booking team has planned for the Miz at Fastlane. He’s been heavily involved with AJ and Jericho, however I don’t want to see him thrown in with them to create a triple threat. Regardless, the two men still put on a good match. The last half of the match really had me at the edge of my seat. The exchange between AJ and Chris was well executed after the match. It planted the seed for Y2J’s inevitable heel turn while giving the fans a reason to tune in for Smackdown. I was very shocked with how the crowd chanted “What?!” during AJ’s promo. Can somebody explain how he got this, and Brie Bella didn’t?
The Dudley Boyz Promo
The use of the Dudleys shows us that the WWE might be serious about their heel push. With that being said, this promo was no different from their promo on Smackdown.
Summer Rae vs Paige
First we see Tyler Breeze in an Intercontinental Title match, and then next we see Summer Rae return to in ring action. This show was quite odd, but refreshing nonetheless. People tend to forget how good Summer is in the ring, and she proved that once again in this contest. The finish came out of nowhere, but I didn’t care enough for it to have any effect on me. They shouldn’t have put this and the Dudleys promo back to back, because it really took me out of the show.
Paul Heyman/Roman Reigns Promo
At first I thought this would spiral into a generic promo about how Reigns couldn’t beat Lesnar. Thankfully I was wrong, because Heyman found a way to make it so much more. After hearing the spin that Paul put on Roman’s situation, it would be more realistic for him to turn heel as opposed to Dean. It was odd to see the Dudleys come out, however it lead to that intense moment between Reigns and Ambrose.
Heath Slater vs Zack Ryder
Zack Ryder was another edition to surprise appearances on this show. The Outcasts continue to move up the card, and I’m excited to see if they’ll get their own program.
The League of Nations vs The Lucha Dragons & Neville
This match is textbook example of why three hour Raws can get boring. Yes, Kalisto and Del Rio are involved, but I just don’t care. They’ve done such a bad job with this feud, that I wish it would finally end. With shows this long, the creative staff is forced to put out everybody on the roster, even if they don’t add anything to the show.
Becky Lynch vs Naomi
This match was the best one in the second half of the show. No, it wasn’t a 10 minute technical masterpiece, but it did one of the better jobs at furthering a story. I couldn’t believe the pop Sasha received when she made her way out. After the triple threat match at Fastlane, this might be the one I’m most excited for.
Braun Strowman vs Big Show
I was stunned. They actually made this match the main event for an episode of Raw. Did someone on the booking team lose their mind? I don’t know who made the call to allow this, but it’ fair to say they completely screwed up .This spot should have been left for Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose, because they’re the main event feud. It also made no sense that the Wyatts left the ring whimpering. Also, Big Show had a WWE Network interview with Stone Cold, so it made no sense for him to go on last. For those that saw the interview, it started off extremely awkward because of this. However, it was so awkward that it became funny.
This show started off so strong and it completely took a nose dive after the Styles-Miz match. In the last two hours, there were only two matches/segments that I cared about. In no way was this acceptable as a go home show. The low point of the show was the main event, while the high point was Styles vs Miz. Overall, this episode deserves nothing more than 4/10.