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Monday Night RAW in St. Louis Review: Just One Long Crown Jewel Commercial

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The show starts with Paige’s big return, where she introduces her prized Women’s Tag Team Champions, The Kabuki Warriors. But Paige seems to either forget or not anticipate the extent of their recent heel turn, and after both Kairi and Asuka rip the microphone out of her hand to have a little fun, and get lightly reprimanded by Paige, Asuka turns on their manager by spitting green mist in her eyes, effectively firing her.

Becky Lynch comes out to put a stop to their mayhem and have a one-on-one match with Kairi Sane. It’s a long match for a show opener, and it feels like something that could have headlined the show with slightly more momentum behind it. Kairi and Asuka are admittedly very fun heels; Kairi has the same energy, only instead of being wholesome and sweet she’s a little bit delusional, and Asuka is just an agent of chaos that could potentially strike at any time. She stays mostly on the sidelines here, save for a moment where she tries to distract Lynch so that Kairi can sneak up on her, but the plan fails. After a lot of back and forth including failed submission holds from both women, The Man gets Kairi to tap out.

R-Truth gets to shoot a short in-ring promo about how much he wants his 24/7 title back immediately prior to his match with Buddy Murphy. The match is short and honestly uneventful, save for the fact that a bunch of superstars interrupt the match to chase each other around looking for the 24/7 title, which distracts R-Truth long enough for Murphy to pin him.

There’s a short promo hyping up the Authors of Pain where they tell us everything they want us to know this week about the Authors of Pain. Wasn’t much.

The Street Profits enter through the crowd, which is a really fun way to come out. I love their energy and the excitement they drum up, and you can tell the crowd does too because it didn’t take long at all for their “We want the smoke” chant to catch on. It’s a short promo to drum up momentum for them, but in my opinion it worked. I want to see them in the ring and I want to see them rise up the roster.

Lest you forget Crown Jewel is on its way, Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, and Jimmy Hart come out to the ring to parade two of their picks for the Crown Jewel team match, Ricochet and Drew McIntyre. McIntyre is pretty brutal and seems like he’s hoping to injure Ricochet so he can’t even make it to Crown Jewel. The whole match is just McIntyre trying his hardest to destroy Ricochet while Ricochet fights to even stand up on his own. I’m hoping to see a complete reversal of this at Crown Jewel, because nothing would be more exciting than watching Ricochet thrive against McIntyre – although personally, I’d like to not see Team Hogan win. The match ends when Ricochet finds a little bit of adrenaline but gets taken out in a surprise attack by Flair’s team captain, Randy Orton.

AJ Styles bullies a newbie backstage and offers to step into the ring with him tonight.

Next up is the “Chicago Cubs” against the Viking Raiders. I’m going to guess prior to the start of the match that this one won’t be more than five minutes. And I was right! It’s an impressive showcase of the Viking Raiders and their abilities, for sure.

Andrade and Sin Cara get to have a rematch. I’ve really liked Sin Cara and find him a more exciting competitor than Andrade, but they’re both very exciting to watch so I’m hoping this will be a nice little mid-show pick me up. It’s a fun but quick match that ends after Zelina Vega distracts the ref long enough for Sin Cara to miss his chance at a pin and Andrade scoops him up in a reverse.

Natalya and Charlotte Flair face The IIconics in a tag-team match. Flair and Natalya are an interesting choice of tag team, and if they were to continue this path and end up facing the Kabuki Warriors for the titles, that’s something I’d love to see. Charlotte switching gears to tag-team competition is doomed not to last but I’d love to see it anyway. She barely got any action in this match since Natalia spent most of it getting beat up by the IIconics, until she has the opportunity to pull out the sharpshooter and win by tap out.

Seth Rollins cuts a very shot backstage promo about his falls count anywhere match with Rowan later tonight, making it clear that he’s confident if not a little nervous.

There’s a little bit of speculation that Rowan, a former member of the Wyatt Family, challenged Rollins to this match based on his ongoing feud with The Fiend. Or it could be because as a close friend of Rowan’s recent enemy Roman Reigns, defeating Rollins in an all-out brawl would send a threatening message to Reigns. Either way, Rowan’s got a bone to pick with Rollins and seems intent on not only beating him but also humiliating him a little bit too. He quickly takes the fight backstage where he puts Rollins through a snack table before moving back out into the ring. Rollins manages to find the upper hand a few times throughout the match, including when he forces a forklift operator to trap Rowan under a pallet and pinning him that way. An absolutely stupid but creative way to end an exciting match that’s supposed to be a taste of his big rematch at Crown Jewel.

I could not possibly care any less about the Lana/Rusev/Bobby Lashley affair angle, despite the show’s best efforts to hype up “King’s Divorce Court.”

Aleister Black in a backstage promo promising that whoever he faces, whoever is willing to pick a fight with him, will get their head knocked clean off. I hope whoever it is gives him a good fight and helps him raise his star a little bit.

AJ Styles accompanied by the rest of The OC, comes out for the match he initiated with Humberto Carrillo. I still think it feels weird for a big dog like AJ Styles to go looking for a fight with a newcomer. Styles should absolutely not feel the need to prove anything, but here he is, looking to prove something for some reason. Maybe he’s have a mid-life crisis. King says it best when he says “I’ve got to admit, Humberto is a lot of fun to watch.” A very talented cruiserweight with a real high-energy set of moves that Styles can barely keep up with at first. He wins with a very impressive spear to Carrillo’s torso while he’s mid-air that knocks him out of sorts. Then, ever the good sport, Styles returns to the ring to offer up a handshake and then does the classic “too slow” which is the final straw for Humberto. They go at it a little bit longer, Styles and The OC making sure that Carrillo goes down and stays down, but the Street Profits come to the rescue and fend off the bullies.

Again, I don’t want to watch Rusev get cucked. When is the last time this kind of storyline was fun outside of, like, Stephanie McMahon and Triple H? Regardless, The King is holding a special edition of King’s Court to see if Rusev and Lana should get divorced. I’m not going to touch on the fact that Jerry Lawler is a bad person to get marriage advice from. Seriously though, why are they trying to make Rusev seem pathetic? Why did they make us wait all night for this? Lana accuses Rusev of only being interested in sex and calls him a sex addict. She says that Bobby Lashley told her that Rusev cheated on her. Then Lashley comes out and he and Rusev trade blows, something I’m sure Rusev has been waiting to do for some time now. Eventually though, Lashley knocks Rusev down and he and Lana make out on top of him. Are they punishing Rusev for trying to get out of his contract or something?

And somehow, that ends RAW. It wasn’t much in the way of excitement considering they’re trying to save all that for Crown Jewel, and in a way the whole episode served as little more than an extended commercial advertising the pay-per-view.

Monday Night RAW in St. Louis is currently streaming on Hulu.

Melissa Jouben
Melissa Jouben
Melissa Jouben is an enthusiastic young writer who can usually be seen performing or enjoying live comedy in New Jersey and New York. She has a very limited range of interests which can be summed up by the following list, in no particular order: comedy, cartoons, toy collecting, wrestling, limited edition varieties of soda, and Billy Joel. She was born and raised in New Jersey and can’t wait to leave so she can brag to all her new neighbors about how great the ocean smells at low tide.

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