Monday, January 17, 2022

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Raw Redux (January 11th, 2016): Becky Kicks Lass and Takes Names

After defeating Becky Lynch “flair and square” on last week’s SmackDown, did you think Charlotte would hear then end of the story so easily? For once, WWE painted quite the phenomenal picture of one of their face Divas, having Becky Lynch seek revenge in a scrappy, gutsy fashion that certainly made you respect her. How did she get her hands on her former best friend? Let’s take a look.

Stephanie McMahon is the first Diva in the spotlight this week, much like 99.467% of Raw episodes. That’s a mathematical fact by the way. Some serious research went into those sums.

She is accompanied by Vinnie Mac, and they have the entire male roster on the stage. They hype the Royal Rumble, Steph pinpointing Kevin Owens as a potential winner. Roman Reigns interrupts, only for Vince to shut him up and book him in a One vs All match in the main event. Ouch. You think Roman would learn to keep his trap shut, wouldn’t you?!

Later in the night, Stephanie is walking to her office with her Dad, and the two are approached by Paul Heyman:

Paul and Vince get into it regarding Brock Lesnar, and Steph plays mediator. Making the peace instead of making someone her bitch: who knew she was capable?

Shortly after, we return to the backstage area to see Paul and Stephanie negotiate Brock Lesnar’s Royal Rumble role. Paul wants Brock to face the winner of the prestigious match at WrestleMania, but Stephanie wants as many high-profile names in the over the top rope battle royal as possible. Stephanie stops kissing up to Paul, telling him Brock will compete in the Royal Rumble match, and that’s just the way it is. You lay down that law Steph. Judge Judy has nothing on her!

JoJo‘s pretty face is next on screen, which reminds me that I can’t wait to see her interview Superstars on WWE Kids. Didn’t she interview Big Show in the first taping?

JoJo is standing by with Charlotte… and Ric Flair. I love how she paused before introducing Ric. WWE know Ric is getting on everyone’s wick (I’m a poet, and hell yeah I know it) and are playing up to the crowd’s disdain of The Naitch. Woolotte and Ric are asked about why Charlotte threw her friendship with Becky away, and Charlotte says she bored of hearing that question. She said that this is competition, and she will do whatever it takes to continue her reign as champion. Charlotte even references Paige, saying that (despite not liking her) she learned from her that there is no room for friends if you want to keep the championship.

Charlotte plays the victim next, saying that Becky is to blame in all of this considering she can’t take it that she lost “fair and square”. In case you needed reminding, the segment closes with Ric saying “That’s my girl – wooo!” or something to that annoying effect.

It is time for our sole Divas match of the night next… which doesn’t even happen. I’d normally be annoyed by that but considering we have seen Brie Bella vs Charlotte 849 times already, I’m ok with that not taking place again. I’m even more ok with how the match not happening came about.

Following Brie’s entrance alongside Alicia (I literally had to reference Alicia here otherwise I wouldn’t mention her at all as she was so irrelevant this week), Charlotte and Ric strut down the aisle. Charlotte temporarily ignores Ric’s notion to link arms which had me dying.

As Charlotte does her signature split in the ring, out of nowhere, an enraged and determined Becky Lynch darts into the ring and right onto Charlotte. Becky attempts the Dis-Arm-Her on a wriggling Charlotte, who is in total shock to see Becky throw her happy-go-lucky to the wind and show off some passion in the form of brutality! Becky dishes out punches like they are going out of fashion, relentlessly taking it to her former pal until referee’s break up the brawl.

Despite the scuffle, Charlotte managed to keep her championship locked around her waist, which also had me howling. Despite looking like she had just had a bad experience on a rollercoaster, the bloody butterfly was still stuck to her waist! Following that Ric takes the mic and rambles on and on. I swear he must have went hard on Bourbon Street before the show started! Her calls someone in the crowd “fat boy” and says that clearly after “the Becky Lynch”, his daughter will not be competing tonight. Taking the coward’s way out, seemingly not all is flair is love and war?

Finally, Becky explains what just went down when interviewed by JoJo. JoJo says that Becky’s emotions got the best of her, but Becky takes exception to that. She puts JoJo in her shoes, asking how she would feel if her best friend took her out like that. She says that considering the circumstances, her emotions are exactly where they need to be. Amen to that!

Thoughts: Have WWE actually learned from feuds gone by? It appears they have, because instead of appearing all smiles after being backstabbed and beat up, Becky showed up all guns blazing. Becky’s character really is so relatable. She comes across a genuine girl with genuine gripes that everyone can get behind. She also proved here that although she is happy to enjoy some fun and games, she is definitely willing to fight tooth and nail to avenge herself. Her yelling that she will take Charlotte’s arm and championship was so awesome. Honestly, the last time anything like this happened for me was when Kelly Kelly went psycho on Beth Phoenix. So absolutely yonks ago!

Charlotte and Ric are also being booked perfectly. They are quick to boast but quick to back out too, always plotting how to get the best of a situation by cutting as many corners as possible. The “supreme athlete” of yesterday would have competed to preserve her pride, but Charlotte lost that, and her own personality a long time ago. I’m not sure if Charlotte ever actually had a personality to be honest now I come to think of it. Regardless, this is working for her and I am enjoying it. I detest her and that’s how I am meant to feel.

I’m also so glad that we didn’t have to see see Brie vs Charlotte again. That match has been plastered all over the main roster since Charlotte debuted, and I am sick of it. If Charlotte does eventually compete in a match to put herself over, can she not face Summer or Tamina. If WWE aren’t going to pull the Charlotte vs Natalya plug either, stick Nattie out there for crying out loud!

I think that come the Royal Rumble, a Submission match would be a nice way to increase the intensity of this feud, and create a match capable of being equally as compelling as SmackDown’s match, but in a different way. Utilising submissions would curb cheating from Charlotte and Ric, with Becky only able to lose if she taps out as the stipulation will remove the DQ element too. Submissions are the forte of both girls, and either Becky could make Charlotte tap, or Becky passes out and preserves a little dignity. It’s a win/win if you ask me.

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