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CM Punk, Asshole Extraordinaire
March 12, 2013

by PyroFalkon
Master of the PyroFalkon Multimedia Empire, Incorporated
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No time for a precap, kids. Too busy working on SimCity for IGN Entertainment, and having a blast at it. And they're paying me a ridiculous amount of money to do so, so I'm eager to get back to it. Let's get to RAW!

Segment 1: We're opening on a bittersweet note here. We cold-open to a darkened arena, and Justin Roberts kicks it to the Titantron for a video montage in memory of Paul Bearer/William Moody... and his crazy, crazy face expressions. Damn, he gave me the chills.

I like the montage, but they're basically playing an uplifting rock song while showing Bearer being exceptionally creepy, which causes a really weird dichotomy. It's a must-watch, especially given that there are cuts of superstars saying how awesome (and creepy) he was.

It ends, and normally I'd make a new segment header, but the Undertaker is coming out. Ten bucks says that wasn't the original plan for the show opening, and I figure he's here for Paul Bearer more than himself right now.

Taker comes out of the back dressed in his creepy full robe and does his full entrance without the commentators talking, which tells me fore sure this is for Paul. In the ring, as he does the arm raise thing, the lights don't come back on. Instead, the camera pans to the center of the ring, at which is a small pedestal with an urn sitting on it.

Taker gets in the ring and stands before the urn, slowly circling it as he looks at it. Finally he does the old school Undertaker salute on one knee in the direction of the Titantron, and as he does so, the “In memory of William Moody” in the background. Fantastic camera angle, fantastic “art” in that one shot, and the crowd is deeply appreciative.

...And here comes CM Punk to be a total fucking douchewhistle, cutting off Taker's music and lights and the whole sequence. Taker breaks his salute, stands up, rolls his eyes in agitation, and almost has a “This wasn't part of the script” face expression. Brilliant, and totally douchey, by CM Punk.

From the stage, Punk grabs a mic and tells the crowd to relax. See, he wasn't here to interrupt the salute; he's here to extend his personal condolences and apologies to Undertaker for his loss... his loss at WrestleMania! Punk is a glorious asshole. Of course, the worst part of the tragedy is that to Paul Bearer, Taker will always be 20-0; but in a few weeks, to everyone else, he'll be 20-1. And after that, we're not going to have anymore heartfelt montages to Paul Bearer, but instead tributes to CM Punk for snapping The Streak.

Punk spreads his arms in a modified Ultimate Pose of Douchebaggery, then just straight leaves without music. Dick. Taker continues to look after him, more offended than anything.

Pre-Segment 2: Turns out during the commercial, Punk popped back out onto the stage to taunt the crowd. Then Kane's pyros went off, and before Punk could react, Kane popped out and teased chokeslamming him off the stage. Punk slipped out and hauled ass to the back around the stage before harm could be done.

Segment 2: And now that we're live, Kane is beating the crap out of every inanimate object in the back hallways. Kane screams at everyone in the locker room, asks for “PCM Punk,” then flings some dude from NXT or something over a table. Not sure who that guy was.

Segment 3 [Singles Match]: Big Show defeats Seth Rollins (w/ The Shield) by disqualification. Show dominated, and the fight spilled outside. There, Show just started beating the crap out of Roman Reigns for no reason, causing Dean Ambrose to attack him, thus drawing the DQ.

Post-Segment 3: Show fell to numbers. Though he had one brief hope spot, the others put him down quickly with a Spear, soon followed by the triple powerbomb.

Segment 4: CM Punk is in the back and bitching out Vickie Guerrero and Brad Maddox for allowing Kane to attack him. He doesn't think it's fair for Kane to attack him since he's, you know, focused on the Taker; “I don't think his little brother should be fighting his battles for him.” Vickie, who is not being a douche tonight, points out that Punk did disrespect the memory of Paul Bearer, so may Paul Bearer have mercy on his soul at WrestleMania...

But tonight, Punk is going to have to ask for Kane's forgiveness, because they'll be facing each other in a no-DQ match. Punk isn't happy and storms out, with Maddox not saying a word for once.

Segment 5 [Singles Match]: Dolph Ziggler (w/ AJ & Big E. Langston) defeats Daniel Bryan by pin. Solid match, definitely a should-watch with even offense from start to finish.

Sweet spot near the end, where Dolph and DB were both on the top rope. DB was on offense and went for a super back suplex, but in midair, Dolph reversed it into a cross body. He only got a two off the pin, but it was fun to watch.

That got us to the end game, where DB tried for a No Lock. He got it locked in, but AJ distracted the ref on the north ropes, allowing Langston to pull Dolph to the south ropes to force a rope break. They stood from that, and Dolph nearly had a quick roll up win, but DB slipped out and applied the No Lock again. However, it didn't get locked in this time; Dolph slipped out, and they both scrambled to their feet. DB whiffed on a roundhouse kick, so Dolph quickly followed up with the Zig Zag and scored the win.

After the match, AJ wordlessly ordered Langston to hit DB with his sit-down shoulder gut buster, just to be a jerk.

Segment 6: Brodus Clay and Tensai hit the ring for the the latter's match. His opponent is Fandango, who comes out only after Tensai screams for him.

Fandango's chick—who doesn't look like same chick from Friday for some reason—comes out first. Then Fandango comes out, and wastes our time as usual.

Segment 7: Trailer of the new GI Joe movie coming out, since The Rock is in it.

Pre-Segment 8: Cody Rhodes and Damien Sandow parody the New Age Outlaws' flowery introduction. [Ed. Note: "Oh, you were not aware? Well, your posterior had best contact someone." Outstanding. Then again, I'm the intellectual asshole who -- some 15 years ago -- had an nWWWo alter-ego who usedc the catchphrase "And if you're not down with that, I got 14 words for ya: Use your mouth to create a mild vacuum around my large and intimidating genitalia," so I was apt to be a fan of this spiel.] Cute, and Cody has entirely too much fun doing so. “If you're not down with that, we've got two words for you... You're welcome!”

Segment 8 [Tag Match]: New Age Outlaws defeat Team Rhodes Scholars by disqualification. The crowd was pumped after the NAO's intro, and Road Dogg had all the early offense. Cody turned it around with a Disaster Kick, and the heels had control.

And then Brock Lesnar came down and F5'ed both faces.

Post-Segment 8: Paul Heyman grabbed a mic and ran down the destruction that Lesnar has done over the past year, thus dismissing Triple H's threats that he can actually take Brock down. Because if even the last remnants of D-Generation X can't take Lesnar, how can Trips expect to? So Brock, on behalf of Heyman, officially accepts Trips's challenge.

...But only if Brock and Heyman get to name the match stipulations. And they'll only state their stipulation after Trips signs the contract. So either Trips has to blindly accept the challenge, or he disappoints everyone in the universe.

Segment 9 [Singles Match]: Mark Henry defeats Kofi Kingston by pin. Pretty much an extended squash, there wasn't much to speak of here. The matched ended with a World's Strongest Slam when Henry caught Kofi coming off the top rope with an attempting flying cross body.

Segment 10: Cody is flirting with Kaitlyn in the back and is... failing at it. Kaitlyn isn't impressed, and Cody doesn't have a chance to ask “what he came to ask” as Sandow barges in. Sandow says he's got a couple of hotties who are “double the woman” of any diva on the roster. Uh... huh?

Oh, it's the Bella Twins! Hooray, they're back! They insist that this “sorry” division never needed them more, and it's great they're back. They each hump a heel's leg—I think it's Nikki who's on Cody—and get all weird and overly flirty. Cody looks off-camera toward Kaitlyn for a split second, but Nikki pulls his face back to he's facing her.

Vickie arrives and welcomes the Bellas back, and she regrettably says that their double date will have to wait. See, since the Rhodes Scholars' match got cut short, they'll have a second one... against Sheamus and Randy Orton. The heels aren't happy, but the Bellas tell them that everything will be all right.

Segment 11: Trailer for the next episode of Psych, since Big Show is on it. Apparently it's a parody for The Blair Witch Project, so it must be 1999 again.

Segment 12 [Singles Match]: Ryback squashes Heath Slater (w/ 3MB) by pin. Whatever.

Post-Segment 12: Drew McIntyre stupidly attacked Ryback immediately, and just as immediately got hit with a Shellshock.

Then Mark Henry came down, and he and Ryback stared at each other. Henry hit Drew with a quick World's Strongest Slam. So Ryback did another Shellshock to him. So Henry did another World's Strongest Slam to him.

Now that Drew's back has turned to an oily substance that used to resemble bone, Henry and Ryback glared at each other from across Drew's body.

Segment 13: Trailer for the movie that Wade Barrett is in.

Segment 14 [Singles Match]: Alberto Del Rio (w/ Ricardo Rodriguez) defeats Antonio Cesaro by submission. Above-average match, nothing special. Good, open offense, though Cesaro had most of it. At the end, Cesaro tried a German suplex, but ADR slipped out and applied the Cross Arm Breaker out of absolutely nowhere.

Josh Mathews interviews Kane in the back, who... says nothing. He's got the urn, and he looks longingly at it. The crowd applauds him, and Kane faces the mic... but he still has nothing to say. Some jackass in the crowd shots “Say something!” at the top his lungs, which is amazingly picked up on the mics; usually one fan's outburst isn't caught.

Anyway, Kane just walks away, looking sad. I feel for you, buddy.

Segment 15: Montage recap of the Rock/Cena feud.

Segment 16 [Tag Match]: Sheamus & Randy Orton defeat Team Rhodes Scholars by pin. Pure formula and a foregone conclusion, and nothing of note here, though the crowd was super-hot. Nice ending sequence: Sheamus and Sandow were legal, and Sheamus hit Sandow with White Noise. Then he beat his chest to signal the Brogue Kick, but Cody ran in to try to cut him off. Randy ran in too, hit Cody with an RKO from pretty much nowhere, and Sheamus hit Sandow with the Brogue Kick over Cody's carcass.

Segment 17: After commercial, we see that during commercial, The Shield popped out from gorilla as the faces celebrated their tag win. The numbers caught up, and the faces got their asses kicked.

Segment 18: Chris Jericho is here for the Highlight Reel. His guests tonight are The Miz and Wade Barrett, because we haven't seen enough fucking trailers in this episode of RAW yet, I guess.

Miz comes down first after a trailer of The Marine 3, and Miz and Jericho chat up some friendly exchanges about how awesome the other is. And then Wade Barrett hits the ring without being invited, insults The Marine 3 (which I find hilarious), then throws it to another trailer of his stupid movie that he's not even starring in, even though we already saw it for Segment 13. Jerry Lawler hilariously points out that Barrett wasn't even in the clip.

Miz and Barrett then bicker like idiots over their acting abilities, Jericho makes fun of Barrett, Barrett gets insulted, they compare resumes, Jericho challenges Barrett for the Intercontinental Title, and...

Uh, and here comes Brad Maddox who chastises them like he's talking to two misbehaving corgis. Maddox tells them to chill, sucks up to them for no reason, and goes ahead and books two matches. We're going to have Jericho and Miz against each other tonight, and the winner faces Barrett next week for the title.

...But the preceding paragraph doesn't begin to scratch how freaking entertaining Maddox is by playing a concussed idiot, somehow without a concussion. He talks at Orton speed, but somehow it's hilarious, mostly because it's so drawling that I'd swear he took the Scott Hall approach to being in the limelight. He concludes by insisting we get some stagehand monkeys down to the ring to clear out the Jeritron 6000, except it was never in the ring to begin with. Jericho helpfully points out “It's already gone,” and Maddox casually replies “I know.” I have no idea why I find that so freaking hilarious, but I do. Maddox's character and shtick is gold.

Segment 19 [Singles Match, winner is #1 contender to the Intercontinental Title for next week]: Chris Jericho and The Miz draw by double disqualification. The match was decent but nothing special, though fast-paced. Back-and-forth from start to finish, and the match spilled outside, where Jericho threw Miz into Wade Barrett, who stuck around on commentary.

Barrett wasn't happy about that, so he beat the crap out of both guys. But that didn't last long, since both guys beat him down in response, then threw him in the ring. Barrett then ate a Skull Crushing Finale and a Codebreaker in turn. Triple threat match next week, anyone?

Segment 20: Another “parody” video of ADR and Ricardo mocking Zeb Colter and Jack Swagger. It's still not funny.

Pre-Segment 21: Jack Swagger and Zeb Colter hit the ring for a match against Sin Cara, but Colter wants to talk first. He lays down his racist statements, but for once, the crowd isn't buying it. To his credit, Zeb feels the crowd and delivers some cheap heat in the middle of the rant by telling the crowd that they need to listen to this. That makes them boo the shit out of him, and they get back into it.

Anyway, Zeb blames everyone in the crowd for letting all the “Sin Caras” of the world for crossing the border. It starts to be decent (albeit repetitive), but then Zeb doesn't shut up quickly enough, and he starts to cut a promo on ADR, who isn't even here (but who earlier said that he was “born in Mexico but made in America”). Again the promo goes off-track, and again he loses the crowd, followed by an ever-increasing “Boring! Boring!” chant.

But that's when Swagger grabs the mic, hits the punchline, and brings the boos back. We, the people.

Segment 21 [Singles Match]: Jack Swagger (w/ Zeb Colter) defeats Sin Cara by submission. Decent match, nothing special. Nearly a blown spot early, where an exchange sent Jack out of the ring. Cara went to the top rope, went flying off with a flying cross body, but sort of put a little too much twist into himself, and he nearly faceplanted the ground despite Swagger “catching” him. Cara looked a little sloppy with a couple other spots too, but nothing too blatant or ugly.

The final sequence started with Cara trying a top rope double axe handle or something once they got back into the ring, but Swagger kicked him out of the air with a standing forward kick. Jack followed up by placing Cara's ankle on the bottom rope, then doing a jumping elbow drop off the bottom rope. He slapped on the Patriot Act, and that was that.

Post-Segment 21: Jack held the hold after the bell rang just to be a jerk. ADR ran down to make the save, and even applied the Cross Arm Breaker. Zeb was able to pull Swagger out from under the bottom rope to make the save, and ADR seemed more angry about the situation than either of the heels. [Ed. Note: I know it happened on "Main Event," so it may not techinally "count," but Sin Cara beat Antonio Cesaro last week in an absolutely outstanding match. There are worse things I can think of than if they used this as an excuse for an Alberto/Sin Cara vs. Swagger/Cesaro match, which in turn could lead to another Sin Cara/Cesaro match for the US Title.]

Segment 22: Another freaking trailer for The Call... except there's a twist. Halle Berry is doing a to-camera interview, but she gets a phone call. It's David Otunga, who tells her that he accidentally gave her number to someone who could cause him physical harm... then says “Meh, never mind,” and hangs up.

Two seconds later, her phone rings again, and it's Kane. He opens with “Halle Berry... I know where you live...” Then breaks into a starstruck fan boy crush as he almost cries in regret that she totally doesn't answer his fan mail, especially since he enclosed a picture of himself. Then we get this exchange:

HB: “Wait... are you that creepy guy in a red mask?”

K: “Uh....... maybe?”

HB: “Look, you wrote your home address as 'The Depths of Hell.' What do you expect me to do with that?”

K: “Well, you know how kids write to Santa at the North Pole? This is the opposite.”

HB: “Oh god... I'm going to kill Otunga.”

K: “Does this mean we're not going on that picnic?”

HB hangs up, rather aggressively. Cut to Kane, who's still on his cellphone (and looking like he's calling from a K-Mart) as he's totally hopeful that she's going to respond. Halle tries some calming stretches, smash-cut to Kane, who is at an arena and not a K-Mart, and he blows his corner pyros while giving us all a shit-eating grin while nodding.

Okay, that was funny. Couldn't care less about the movie, but at least that bit was entertaining enough to be on TV.

Segment 23 [Singles No-DQ Match]: Kane defeats CM Punk by pin. Solid match, a bit of a spotfest that's a should-watch. I'll give it a proper recap...

Kane does an alternate entrance, as he's still got the urn in his hands. He doesn't bother with the ring, and just places it gently on a pedestal near the commentating table. As he steps away from it, Punk assaults him outside the ring, because it's a no-DQ and why not.

It's all punchy-kicky, but he breaks his momentum to take his shirt off, so it's Kane who then takes advantage with punchy-slammy. Kane eventually flings Punk into the timekeeper's area and tears apart the table, but Punk steals the bell and smacks it into Kane's gut. Punk follows up with a double axe handle off the barricade, but he loses control when Kane smacks him with a monitor.

The fight goes back into the ring, and Kane continues the punchy-punchy assault. Punk retreats to the corner, but Kane maintains the offense, then puts Punk on the top rope. Then the fans fire up a loud “CM Punk! CM Punk!” chant, and I feel a little ashamed that I didn't notice how much of a vocal minority he had. There are a lot of people who, unlike me, hate The Streak and everything attached to it.

Anyway, Punk is seated on the top rope, and Kane goes up to try a superplex. But Punk fights him off, knocks him down, and hits a Macho Man Elbow Drop. First pin of the night, but he only gets two. Punk hits Kane with two signature running knees, but Kane counters the bulldog and flings Punk over the top rope to take us to...


We're back, and a chair has been introduced in the ring, but it doesn't seem like it's been used. We have an exchange that ends with Punk coming off the top rope with an elbow, and he makes a cover, but again only gets a two.

Punk grabs the chair and wedges between the top and middle ropes in the corner. He tries flinging Kane into it, but Kane reverses and it's Punk who takes the shot. Kane stays on offense with several clotheslines, a sidewalk slam, and clotheslines him over the top rope. Kane follows, flings Punk into the barricade, grabs a few more chairs, and flings them into the ring. Kane picks up Punk's carcass and throws that into the ring as well.

Kane situates a chair flat in the middle of the ring, then goes for a chokeslam. But it's been too long since Punk has been hit, so in midair, he reverses the chokeslam into a DDT straight into the chair. He tries the pin, but only gets two.

Punk now on offense, and now with a chair in hand. He delivers a few shots to Kane, then steals Taker's and Kane's throat slash as he goes for the haymaker chairshot to Kane's face. But Kane was ready, grabs Punk by the throat... but eats a roundhouse kick. That takes crazy flexibility to hit that kick with a dude holding you by the throat at arm's length.

Punk looks to be in control, but as he and Kane struggle to their feet, Undertaker's gong sounds. No light flicker, no other sign, but it distracts Punk. It gives Kane a chance to finally grab Punk by the throat, and third time is the charm: he hits the chokeslam (but not on the chair), and makes the pin. Good stuff.

Post-Segment 23: After the match, Undertaker's music played instead of Kane's. Undertaker popped out of gorilla, stood on the stage, and dropped into the classic Undertaker salute one last time as the In Memory screen was put on the Titantron again. Kane did the same salute in the direction of his brother, but from the center of the ring. Very touching.

...And then Punk smacks Kane in the back of the head with the urn, and follows up by bashing him in him in the face a couple times. Undertaker hauls ass to the ring, but Punk bails and takes the urn with him. He cradles it like a child all the way to the stage, and Taker checks on his brother.

Once he knows Kane is relatively okay, he just glares at Punk, who is on the stage. Punk cradles the urn in one hand while mocking the Undertaker salute, and Taker counters with his throat slash. Punk isn't intimidated, and they have a Staredown of Intense Rivalry to a crowd that is almost universally calling for Punk's head.

Final Thoughts: Overall, I was a little disappointed with the night, but I won't lie: I'm distracted by work that I thought I already had done, and I had to split my time between doing the recap and doing work. The stress of dividing my attention and busting my ass just to maintain $19,000/year is killing me. Hell, I had to go back and re-watch the main event just to get you the play-by-play. If I had known this was going to happen at freaking 9pm, I would have politely asked Rick to take the recap instead.

But that said, I was paying attention to RAW, and nothing really commanded my whole brain. To many stupid movie trailers and cuts and recaps and blah blah blah. Still, the segments were interspersed with memories and moments of Paul Bearer, and that was pretty cool. And I like that Kane won in the main event as a tribute to the guy; Punk loses, and still comes out looking strong, and you can't ask for anything more.

All right guys, I need to get back to work. Thanks for reading, and I'll catch you this weekend for SmackDown.

Episode Grade: C+



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