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Raw Redux (July 23rd, 2012): Raw 1000 Gives Us 1000 Reasons to Smile Again


That’s all I can really say right now. It takes a lot to truly leave me speechless, but the 1,000th episode of Raw did a damn good job of doing just that. From top to bottom, this episode was stacked with delightful surprises that never in a million years could I have predicted. Honestly, I don’t think I could have put together a better show.

For weeks, we’ve watched AJ take center stage on both Raw and SmackDown in one of the hottest storylines the WWE has ever put together, and tonight it culminated in one of the weirdest, most shocking weddings I’ve personally ever witnessed. Trish Stratus appeared in a backstage cameo, paying homage to one of the segments that helped establish her as the unprecedented sexpot of the Attitude Era. Lita returned to the ring to wrestle in a match that NO ONE would have seen coming. And Stephanie McMahon showed us all that her time away from the camera hasn’t stopped her from still being the absolute best female mic worker around.

Take all that, place it in a beautiful Hallmark gift bag, and add Naomi, Cameron, Vickie Guerrero, Layla, and Mae Young inside. Stuff it with tissue paper, add some ribbon, and then just sit back. Focus your eyes on the beautiful wrapping because as you open it up, what’s inside is none other than the greatest gift the WWE Universe has ever given Diva fans.

Lets get it started with a peek inside, shall we?

Raw provided us with only a peek of our beloved Queen Vickie tonight. She appeared at ringside to support Prince Dawlf in a lackluster six-man tag team match that him teaming with Albie and Chris Jericho. They faced off against the team of Rey Mysterio, Sinbotchara, and the World Heavyweight Champion, Sheamus.

I find it unfortunate that they didn’t do more with Queen Vickie tonight. Over the years she’s been a vital part of both Raw and SmackDown, and as much as she tweeted about being the GM of Raw, surely they could have had Vickie reacting or something. I honestly expect all that to happen next week, when the new GM officially takes over, but still, I wish Queen Vickie and Prince Dawlf would have been given a bigger role tonight. And since that’s my only complaint with the whole show, you know it was a pretty good night. At least Prince Dawlf got to deliver the final blow in his match and kind of stand out as the star. But here’s my thing, the crowd has kind of embraced our favorite blond as their favorite blond, so is Prince Dawlf officially going face? Is Jericho going to be the face in this feud? Queen Vickie is still a heat magnet so it’s going to be interesting to see if this ends up getting booked as heel versus heel. Either way, it’s going to be gorgeous. Ziggler and Jericho in a match together, against one another? Oh man… talk about a dream (a you-know-what type of dream).

For our sweet Bobby, one of his dreams came true during Raw. His beloved Naomi got a chance to make an appearance. And what made it so amazing for Bobby, and probably plenty of others that were watching around the world, is the fact that the Funkdactyls had new outfits!

Naomi, giiiiiiiiiiirl. That body. That booty. Envious! I have to say that even though I find Brodus Clay, Naomi, and Cameron getting kind of stale for me personally, they are so over with the crowd, it’s ridiculous. I’m not sure if it’s going to end any time soon, so with that in mind, I hope they finally put Brodus in a real storyline. SOMEONE told me that THE MIZ found the Intercontinental Championship backstage last night and apparently he decided he was going to keep it instead of giving it back to its rightful owner. So, you know, why not let him feud with Brodus for the IC Championship? Maybe let Naomi and Cameron and get involved?

Here’s my suggestion for that. I would book Brodus versus Miz heading into SummerSlam for the Intercontinental Championship. I would have Miz unsuccessfully try and hit on Naomi and Cameron every single week with the girls finally having had enough of him. Then do a swerve angle where one of them, leaning towards Naomi, turns on Brodus and aligns with Miz. That way, the girls can feud with one another, and I feel Naomi would be an amazing heel with Miz. Just my little suggestion for a fun, on-the-side type of storyline.

Speaking of storylines, Trish Stratus made a guest appearance. She was placed in a segment backstage with Triple H, kind of spoofing something they did in the past. I got it almost immediately, and I’m sure most of our readers here at DD got it as well.

It’s always good to see Trish these days and I loved the little throwback they did. I saw it as them sort of paying homage to the past, remembering the little things, and giving all of us fans something to smile about. I will never forget when Stephanie walked in that lockerroom and saw Triple H with a bent over Trish. Reversing things tonight was brilliant, and Trish looking so creeped out by X-Pac made my night. Who wouldn’t feel dirty after being perved on by him??

(Ignores the fact that X-Pac used to be known as Syxx in WCW/NWO, and that the writer of this Redux may or may not have had a crush on him back then. I WAS YOUNG AND STUPID OKAY?!)

What the hell? Who wrote that? =)

Anyway, the next segment is something that words can’t even begin to describe. I’m not kidding when I saw I laughed so hard, I cried, and peed my pants a little. Classy, I know, but really. I thought this was going to be just another innocent backstage segment. Good God was I ever wrong.

What do you even say after that? There’s absolutely nothing except that for me, personally, it’s the greatest thing I’ve ever seen on Monday Night Raw in all 1000 episodes. I feel like I could stop watching wrestling now and feel complete knowing that the most ridiculous storyline ever wasn’t forgotten and actually had a conclusion. Unbelievable.

What’s just as unbelievable is what happened at Daniel Bryan and AJ’s wedding. Right before it happened, we got a shot of DB backstage talking to strange men in white coats. I, for one, thought they were orderlies, and almost immediately I was filled with a sense of rage thinking he was going to have AJ committed after they said “I do.” That would have been an absolute brilliant way for him to get her out of the way, and out of his affairs, but oh my gosh, did the ‘E ever throw a curveball!

AJ as GM of Raw?! Are you kidding me?! This has so many mouth-watering possibilities that I honestly can’t stand it. Daniel Bryan’s meltdown after being left at the alter was nothing short of incredible. The fact that it was AJ’s wedding that led to a segment between DB, Punk, and The Rock makes me swoon. And now knowing that she is going to be in charge of Monday Night Raw… whoa! The way she mocked Daniel Bryan on top of the stage, the way my stomach clenched when I thought for a brief segment she was about to marry Vince… this segment had it all. No wrestling wedding goes off without a hitch and this was no exception. I loved every single piece of this hot mess segment. It was truly a highlight for me and I’m thankful Daniel Bryan lost his title in 18-seconds at WrestleMania. Without that, DB and AJ probably would never have been elevated to this level, especially since I feel that loss was more for Sheamus’ benefit, than either DB or AJ. It’s funny how life works in reverse sometimes. Sheamus, the champion, has had one of the most lackluster World Heavyweight Championship reigns in recent memory, while Daniel Bryan and AJ were given the ball with a beautiful storyline. They both nailed it, and I seriously could not be more proud of them, and excited to see where they go from here.

As if that wasn’t enough, we got Lita. And we got Lita in a way that left me grinning from ear to ear.

Like all of us said on the Post-Raw Show last night, none of us were in the room when Santino came out. Heath Slater coming out certainly didn’t bring me back to my television. But when LITA‘s music hit, I ran. It was like WrestleMania Axxess all over again when I figured out which line was Christian’s back in Miami. I’ll just echo what I said last night. Lita and her fans deserved this moment, and it was incredible to see such a special Diva finally get her moment. Lita meant a lot to so many people during her run in the WWE and I’m glad she finally got a proper legend type of moment. She’s absolutely a legend. If not for her style, her looks, and her attitude, who knows if girls like AJ would have ever even gotten into wrestling? Lita wasn’t a blond bombshell. She had red hair. She had tattoos. She marched to the beat of her own drum. She was sexy in an entirely different way that Trish was sexy, and last night she looked AMAZING. I was always a Stacy Keibler/Torrie Wilson girl in a Trish/Lita kind of world, but last night made me realize how truly special Lita is as a talent.

And for the last segue of the evening, (picture my cheeky smile at this point) speaking of special talents… Stephanie McMahon made a triumphant return to television.

No words.

There’s really not a lot I can say about Raw last night. I could sit here and gush about how fantastic it was, but I don’t think I can possibly do it justice. Believe me when I say I wanted to write something funny, charming, and down right Khaleesified for this special episode of Raw, but I can’t. Last night I sat back and I watched as a fan. I was able to see my childhood and teen years come to life one more time and bring me back to a place when wrestling was a spectacle and we, as fans, weren’t filled with so much rage and hate. When DX kicked off the show I smiled. There was a time when I would dress up in my cutest outfits and pretend I was the valet for the New Age Outlaws. I had my own character, my own wrestling name (Crystalina Smith), and I would legit stand in front of my television and pretend I was at ringside. All of that came flooding back to me and when Road Dogg did their introductions, I slipped my name in there just like I always used to.

Last night was magic for me. The show itself was just incredible. I woke up yesterday morning with a sense of excitement I haven’t had in a very long time. There was a time in my life where everything I did revolved around Monday nights and Raw (as well as Nitro…) and that was given back to me yesterday. Words can’t even begin to express the emotions I felt while I watched the show last night. All I can say is that as a fan, I’m thankful I got a chance to see the historic episode that was number 1000. As a Diva fan, all I can do is thank the wrestling god (JBL…) that we were given so much to cheer for last night. And as Cryssi, the older, hotter, more mature yet still kind of marky Khaleesi of the World, all I can do is thank World Wrestling Entertainment for bringing me on a beautiful trip down memory lane. There were several times last night I wanted to slip on a sexy dress and revisit my past as Crystalina Smith. I think we can all guess I would book myself in a storyline with Queen Vickie, feuding for Prince Dawlf’s affection. And for the WWE to make me feel that kind of joy again, you know they went above and beyond for this show.

Will Raw keep up this momentum? I have no idea. Am I being douchey and answering my own questions again? Absolutely. But I don’t care. Honestly, I don’t care what they do next week. If they magically drop AJ as GM, it will suck and every single one of us will bitch I’m sure. But that’s next week. Right now, I’m on a high, and whatever happens in the future, I’ll always have July 23rd, 2012. It was absolutely everything rolled into one. It showcased the past, it presented the present, and it gave us a glimpse of what the future could and should be like. It was incredible.

And there’s honestly nothing else I can possibly say right now.

Until next week…. Cryssi out.

If that wasn’t enough Raw for you, listen to the one night only Post-Raw 1000 Show!

What did you think of Raw 1000? Tell us in the comments!

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