The SmarK RAW Rant – 11.18.13 Live from Nashville, TN Your hosts are Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler & JBL COOHHH and Steph join us to start, reminding us how important they really are to the show, and they couldn’t be any more disappointed in RAW last week. Join the club. Randy Orton interrupts and he’s pissed off at being so disrespected lately and needs more protection. So HHH brings out Brad Maddox and Vickie and punishes them with matches tonight for some reason. So….the babyface here is….who? I don’t even understand who I’m supposed to be hating. Are fans sitting at home going “Oh man, last week was so disorganized! I’d enjoy the show much more if matches were made by the right person!” And was I supposed to find last week particularly chaotic and disaster-filled, or am I supposed to not think that because HHH said so? This whole storyline is just completely off the rails. Randy Orton v. Brad Maddox Maddox, forced to wrestle in his nice clothes, tries running away, and then whacks Orton with the microphone in desperation and sends him into the post. Into the ring, a DDT gets two. This only annoys Orton, who tosses Maddox and destroys him outside, then back in for a beating with the mic. The ref stops the match at 4:00. And another thing…what is the point of the Brad Maddox character now? We have three layers of authority figures and Brad’s at the very bottom, despite being RAW GM. Intercontinental title: Curtis Axel v. Big E Langston Big E overpowers him for two and gets a backbreaker for two. Axel gets a cheapshot to take over and we take a break. Back with Axel holding a facelock, but Langston tosses him around with suplexes and hits the Warrior splash for two. Axel escapes the Big Ending, but gets clotheslined and the Ending finishes at 7:48 to give Big E the belt. Good for him. *1/2 Meanwhile, Orton clarifies to the Shield that they WILL have his back tonight. What exactly is “country” about the show tonight anyway? Big Show v. Ryback Show slugs away in the corner and puts Ryback on the floor. Back in, Ryback’s offense goes nowhere until he clips Show to take over. Big splash gets two. DDT gets two and we hit the chinlock. Show fights out, so Ryback puts him down with a spinebuster for two. The clothesline sets up the Shellshock, but it only gets two. That’s kind of a waste of a huge spot. Ryback tries it again, but this time Show punches him out at 8:00. You’d think they’d have Show squash some geek to build up the title shot he’s losing. * Randy Orton tries to attack and gets laid out as a result. Meanwhile, Vickie “collapses” backstage as a rib on AJ’s dehydration scare in Europe. STAY CLASSY, WWE. Stephanie is not sympathetic. Vickie Guerrero v. AJ Lee So the EMTs, who are supposed to be medical professionals, wheel Vickie out to the ring for a match on the stretcher, just because Stephanie told them to do it. Vickie faints again because she’s DEHYDRATED you see. DEHYDRATION. HILARIOUS. This company can’t make pop culture references newer than 10 years old most of the time, but when it comes to humiliating their own employees they’re right on the pulse of things. Vickie tries to run away, but AJ puts her in the Black Widow for the submission. Meanwhile, Randy Orton is mystified as to where the Shield was. GET THE MAN ANOTHER ICE PACK! Meanwhile, HHH promises Orton that there will be no Shield, no interference and no help at Survivor Series. So expect the Shield, interference and help. John Cena joins us to opine that he will win the World title bout on Sunday. Alberto Del Rio interrupts and he also feels that he has a good chance of winning. It leads to fisticuffs and Del Rio gets chased off. Next week, Michael Strahan is the guest host. I don’t really know who that is. Florida Georgia Line does a song. They’re drinking whiskey and stuff. THIS they leave in? Daniel Bryan, CM Punk, Cody Rhodes, Goldust & The Usos v. The Shield & The Wyatt Family The babyfaces control the Shield, and the heels are squabbling as we take a break. Back with Cody getting worked over by the Shield, who are pointedly ignoring the Wyatts. Finally Rollins tags in Harper, allowing Cody to hit the disaster kick and bring in Daniel Bryan. He runs wild on the heels, but walks into a powerbomb from Harper that gets two. Bryan gets the heat now for a while, and we take another break. In this case, Hulu actually omits the commercial and cuts right back to the match. So we return with Punk getting a hot tag and running wild on the Shield. Macho Elbow on Ambrose, but Bray interrupts the GTS. And then it totally goes nuts, with the Usos tossing the Wyatts and hitting them with double dives. Reigns spears Goldust, Cody hits Crossroads on him, Punk & Bryan give Rollins a Hart Attack, and Punk finishes Ambrose with the GTS at 26:08. A heel beatdown follows, but Rey Mysterio returns to make the save. ***1/2 The Pulse Main event was great, but the rest of the show continues to freefall. Survivor Series might be scary bad, especially with a 7-on-7 Divas match. Why do they even HAVE that many women employed? And both title matches look like clear screwjob finishes to set up a round of rematches at TLC. Not looking promising for the next few months.