Welcome to the Weekly
Overcooked Raw Refresher
Featuring a brief recap of Last Night's Survivor Series Storylines
and a preview of Tonight's Raw
So, I don't know if you heard, but there was this thing that happened.
Immediately after seeing this thing that happened, I had some thoughts, which you can see here:
One of these thoughts was:
"This may have ended Wrestling."
So here's the deal with that.
I may have been in shock at the time.
I still don't think I agree with the decision to book the match that way, removing the mystique of Brock Lesnar in a minute and a half, effectively jettisoning every thing they've been doing to build him for the past almost three years.
But regardless of whether or not I liked it, regardless of whether or not any of us liked it, that wasn't the point. The point was the shock value. The point was to get casual fans talking. The point was to get a mention on Sportscenter, or Good Morning America even. The point was so that friends of mine who watched WWE religiously from 1997-2005, then faded away as adult responsibilities--jobs, marriage, children--took hold of their free time, that these people would see "Goldberg Beats Lesnar" trending on Facebook, and they might tune in to Raw tonight, maybe with their kids watching on the couch, and the WWE might reclaim one old fan, and 2.5 new ones.
That was the point.
The moment was the point.
Because whether you liked it or not, whether you were happy to see "lazy-ass, suplex spamming" Brock Lesnar get his ass kicked, whether you were dumbfounded as to why they picked 49 year old Gold-Dad to be the guy to beat the guy who beat the Undertaker at Wrestlemania, if you loved it or hated it or it made you cackle with laughter or want to pull your hair out, regardless of your in the moment reaction, you gotta admit ... They got you.
After all the build up and all of the vignettes and all of the in-ring promos, it came down to this match, and THIS is how it was booked.
It was a surprise, and it got you talking. It got you interested. It got you reading this column, and probably others like it, ahead of an episode of Raw that you're probably actually excited to watch for a change.
And even if you loved it in the moment, here's the next big question: Where do they go from here?
We already know that Goldberg has signed to wrestle at The Royal Rumble, probably IN the Royal Rumble, and all that talk of retirement, that line "Brock Lesnar, not only are you next, YOU'RE LAST!" was actually a line of bullshit.
So what do they do with him? What do they do with Brock Lesnar?
I mean, they had to have a plan, right?
Tell me, honestly, regardless of how you felt in the moment right after that Jackhammer and the ref counted three, do you trust this company to tell this story right?
You don't, and nor should you. They've earned your distrust.
That's the problem with booking to create a "moment." If, in the process of creating that "moment," you wind up destroying almost three years of storytelling, I don't see how the result is a net positive.
I still hate the decision, but it didn't "end wrestling," as I so indelicately put it last night, while in the haze of just having seen the most incomprehensible finish of a PPV that I can remember.
But if somehow they figure out what to do with this storyline and it turns out to be amazing, I reserve the right to change my mind, and I will be the first to put up my hand and say "I was wrong."
However, if they f*ck it up, you better believe I'm going to say "I told you so."
And now for a preview of Raw: