Saturday, September 18, 2021

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Raw Redux (May 23rd, 2016): The Spotlight Shines on Charlotte’s Daddy Issues

Talk about airing your dirty laundry in public! Charlotte did just that tonight, expressing why for the last few months, she been using her Dad to get her some victories, and she proved last night that she doesn’t need his overbearing spotlight any longer. As Jim Ross would say, Charlotte’s tirade and Ric’s rambling got bowling shoe ugly… in more ways than one!

Before we get to The Flairs’ airing of their mucky linen, we have to address our solo Stephanie McMahon appearance of the night. She approached Seth Rollins backstage to set the record straight about the changes that have been going on. He was over-excited to see her and Steph, well, she wasn’t too bothered. Awkward!

We unfortunately didn’t get a women’s match tonight but we get quite the major promo. Charlotte, Ric Flair and Dana Brooke made their way to the ring to address the women’s championship picture. It was far from about the title however. Thankfully, this may the final time that Ric Flair either overshadows something, or is at the center of it.

Thoughts: What a major segment this was. I could hammer on about the negatives, but I think there are plenty of positives to take from Charlotte’s scathing verbal assault of her Dad. Before we get to them…

Let’s address Ric’s cringe-worthy lines at the start. I respect everything Ric has done in his career and he is in fact an all-time fave of mine… but that promo? If we can even call it a promo anyway. That right there was reason enough as to why Charlotte needs to be without him and start something fresh. I could honestly barely understand what he was talking about. Tripping over his words, forgetting where he was going with his points, not finishing sentences and randomly comparing Dana to Arn Anderson. At least that’s what I thought he was meaning. This was bad.

Thankfully, Charlotte resurrected this in a major way. I thought she got off to a rough start and seemingly forgot her lines (she gave us that ‘deer in the headlights’ look), but she recovered tremendously. She really is excelling at snapping back at the audience too, ensuring that they boo her and are more engaged with the segment. The way she does that was a highlight for me.

While I don’t think she put the point across about being abandoned strongly enough, it’s clear to see the story here. Charlotte has been using her Dad all along to get noticed and reach the top, and now she’s defended her title without him, he’s useless to her. Ok, Dana helped her at Extreme Rules, but she was the one that made Natalya tap out. That was her own doing. And even if Dana gave her a hand, so what? Charlotte can command Dana to whatever she likes and not be overshadowed by her Dad and his reckless temper. Charlotte can keep cheating to win, and not have to deal with second-hand embarrassment. When the spotlight is on her his time, it’ll be her and only her who has the limelight. She’s the star of her new relationship. It was perfectly put over that without Charlotte, there would be no Dana Brooke. I like this.

My favorite lines from the segment where the one I just mentioned previously, “I’m not Ric Flair’s daughter – you are Charlotte’s Dad” and “All of these people think you’re immortal, but you’re just, to me, dead” were amazing. Asking Ric if he needed a tissue was hilarious as well! I don’t feel sympathy for Ric at all after all of his cheating, but boy did these lines make Charlotte seem like a total cow. They were perfect choices and totally emphasized her position. It was a fantastic rub for her. The latter of my favorite lines was reminiscent of Paige‘s reference to Reid when her and Charlotte had their main event contract signing. This felt raw, brutal and extremely personal. 30 years of feeling left out in the cold and in someone else’s shadow came to an end for Charlotte.

Title picture wise though, where do we go from here? The segment was apparently going to address that, but was instead one final edition of The Flair Show. I have to say that while I’m fine with Dana helping Charlotte win at Extreme Rules, having Nattie tap out was dumb. I understand that it makes Charlotte seem like she can stand on her own two feet but it would have been better to see her be even more deluded than she is now without a reason to have her believe she can do everything by herself. Nattie was treated like garbage again and I’m not a fan of her being paid absolute dust time and time again.

Natalya still has a sort-of reason to get another shot. Although she did tap out, she was still distracted, leading to the submission being locked in. Could we see her get one more chance, with added Becky and Dana in the mix? I propose a Fatal-4-Way at Money in the Bank. Charlotte thinks that Dana is her extra muscle, but how about if Shane or Stephanie turn the tables, pitting Dana is a title challenger instead? Seeing Charlotte flip out as a result wild be entertaining. The match would also have a semi-tag team element to it too, and it makes sense. WWE don’t always do what makes sense though, just ask Sasha Banks

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