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So last week, we got the news that the RAW Women’s Championship would be defended in a triple threat match at WrestleMania where Champion Bayley would take on enemy Charlotte Flair and best friend Sasha Banks. However, we know that the road to WrestleMania isn’t always a straight one, so let’s see how things developed on this week’s RAW Redux!
Before RAW, WWE.com exclusive posted a video of Charlotte talking with her protege, Dana Brooke. Dana is apologetic for last week’s failed interference, which allowed Sasha to enter the Championship match at WrestleMania. She tries to plead for forgiveness as she describes her recent chores for Charlotte, including getting her a copy of ‘Beauty and the Beast’. Charlotte interrupts her and just warns Dana that she needs to find a way to stop Sasha from being able to compete at WrestleMania.
Fast forward to RAW and Sasha Banks has made to the ring accompanied by the Champion Bayley. Waiting inside is a focused Dana, with her mentor Charlotte overlooking the action. In a match the barely lasts 90 seconds, Sasha rolls up Dana for the easy victory! The BFFs celebrate as they head to the back, but Charlotte grabs the microphone and gets in the ring.
“You’re a DISGRACE!”, Charlotte shouts in disgust at her protege. After more verbal berating, she tells Dana that she’s getting rid of her! However, before the mentor can finish her rant, the protege decks her right in the jaw! Pummeling her into the turnbuckle, hitting a huge clothesline – this isn’t a catfight! Charlotte catches ALL of Dana’s hands and looks shaken up as the crowd chants for Dana!
RAW Fallout catches Dana backstage and she is pumped! She warns that she’s not finished with her (now former) mentor yet!
Backstage, the real ‘bosses’ of RAW Mick Foley and Stephanie McMahon are interrupted by Nia Jax. She questions how Sasha Banks could get added to the WrestleMania title match, when Jax put her out for a month! So, Stephanie muscles in with her power and allows Nia a ‘spotlight’ – she gets to take on RAW Women’s Champion, Bayley, to prove why she should be involved in the title picture!
Backstage, the besties Bayley and Sasha try to psyche up before the match. Sasha tells Bayley not to worry about the haters, tonight she just needs to take out Nia and then she can focus on WrestleMania!
Fast forward to the aforementioned match! Bayley is out first, followed by Nia who means business. I mean, it’s not like we’ve not seen these two face each other a million times before right?
As per usual, it’s your typical Nia match – yes that’s right: a load of screaming, no-selling into a running shoulder block here and there, topped off with some hairmares. Oh, I mean she threw over the steel steps… that was different… Bayley gets some offence in during the match, but it’s always very shortlived. Nia pummels Bayley into the corner and stomps her out over the referee’s 5 count which causes a DQ finish!
She hangs Bayley in the Tree of Woe and gears herself to run into her, but gets stopped by the referee. Instead, she drags Bayley out of the ring and tosses the Champion into the ring barricade leaving the Champ fallen.
Finally, we get another new promo featuring Emma who will be debuting a gimmick she already had. This time the voiceover mentions how she learnt that ‘nice girls finish last’, but hey… can you hurry up and just get to RAW properly please?
Thoughts: Oh RAW… let me just get the big ‘bleh’ out of the way first. Last week, I was pretty happy with the decision to not include Nia in the title picture, but I guess this week is proof that the rumours are true. I’m sure you can all see it within my reviews, each week they seem to be more and more negative towards her as she has been so lacklustre lately. Putting her on the big stage with the company’s top three women is only going to expose her more. Even if Charlotte was able to give us a Hogan/Andre moment and scoop slam Nia, I really don’t think I’d care at this point. NIA LEARN SOME NEW FRIGGING MOVES. GET SOME INTENSITY, PLEASE!
Anyway, onto the star of the night and it’s someone that I’m usually quite critical over, but Dana Brooke did a really good job! I mean, sure I didn’t really expect this to happen now and Lord knows what they have planned for her since she’s nowhere near the title picture, but I’m so thankful for seeing something fresh!
I think we all expected this moment to happen months ago and probably expected this angle to include more fumbling and a great build, but either way it’s such a refresher. The crowd getting behind Dana, seeing her do something new, having Charlotte gain a new dimension to her character – it’s all good progression… but as mentioned, where this will progress to is the question.
Overall, ‘sloppy’ is probably the keyword that I can use to the RAW booking lately. It’s there, but it’s so not there. SmackDown continue to steal the crown every single week with their logical and continuous booking, but RAW just seem to be a bit of a fail overall. Emmalina anyone?
Are you happy to see Nia back involved in the picture? Was Dana’s uprising too premature? Is Sasha making that heel turn? Drop a message in the comments below!