Welcome to this week's
Overcooked Raw Refresher
Where we delve deep into one or two issues from last week's RAW
and I give you a preview of tonight's episode.
This week on the Refresher:
Okay, so on the post-Raw podcast, I went off on Enzo Amore for committing verbal sexual assault on Lana.
Basically, Enzo's argument is that Lana saw his penis, so now she wants him to have sex with her.
He knows she wants it.
I mean, just look at how she dresses.
She must want it.
She wants her turkey stuffed. By Enzo.
Because Enzo was naked in the hallway.
"Yo, your girl saw my penis and testicles! Ergo, she must want to have coitus with me! Because that's how that works! And you can't teach that!"
I thought it was degrading, disgusting, and had no place on a TV PG show in 2016.
I was pretty adamant about it.
Some of the listeners said I was "triggered."
Actually, here's what they said:
"I never thought a guy like Alex would get so offended with Enzo's savage comments towards Lana. He got so "riled up" and triggered so easily. I thought it was sarcasm but he was extremely serious about that, damn."
"The SJW brainwashing has claimed another one. It's a f*cking TV show."
(For those of you blissfully unaware, SJW means "Social Justice Warrior" and it is meant to be an insult, a pejorative, something said to dismiss one's opinions entirely.)
Here was my response to that last post:
"Someone needs to explain to me why being a "Social Justice Warrior" is a bad thing. Why would it be a bad thing to be a Warrior who fights for Social Justice? Isn't Social Justice something we should be striving for, as a people?"
No one has yet to be able to give me an answer to those questions.
Now, as fare as being "triggered," I don't believe I was "triggered," at least, not in the sense of the definition that the listeners were using.
Here's one definition from Urban Dictionary:
Trigger (n): A topic, phrase or word that emotionally sets someone off. Could refer to anger, or reliving a traumatic experience. Sometimes this is logical, other times it seems like an attention grab.
Trigger (n): A word used often by idiots on Tumblr to justify their bitchy attitudes, most of whom don't know what a real traumatic experience is.
That second one, referring to "idiots on Tumblr," and their "bitchy attitudes," that's the version of Triggered that I think people were using to describe me, and they were wrong.
I don't have a traumatic experience in my past, and I wasn't trying to draw attention to myself. I already have a pretty big platform from which I can spew my Socially Justified Warriorism.
I look at it like this: As someone who covers wrestling--primarily WWE wrestling--for a living, I feel like I have a responsibility to call out the flaws where I see them, so that the product can be better than what it is. Even if you love the WWE (and for the most part, I do too), it ain't perfect. And there are a lot of things it can fix to inch ever closer to that elusive perfection.
One of the biggest things wrong with it is the phenomenon of good guys being casually (or even blatantly) sexist. It sucks and it needs to stop now.
The push back I get the most on this point is that "Raw is just a TV show."
Here's the thing. While it is a f*cking TV show, its not just a f*cking TV show.
The WWE, for better or for worse, is marketing its show to kids. Kids are impressionable. They pick out their favorite wrestlers and they want to be just like them. One of the most popular is Enzo Amore. Go ahead and Google "kid does impression of enzo amore." I'll wait.
Those kids don't know how to make a judgment call on whether or not Enzo's promo this week is more "problematic" than last week, or whether or not it contributes to "the patriarchy" and "systemic sexism in wrestling" and "the normalization of rape culture in America." They just know that the guy they love and look up to is saying mean things to a girl and everyone is laughing, so that must be what cool guys do. Because Enzo is cool. He's the good guy, so everything he does is something to emulate and strive to be one day.
The little boys think it's okay to say mean things to girls, and the little girls think they deserve to be treated that way.
Am I over-simplifying things? Maybe. But you know who isn't? The writer of this brilliant blogpost entitled "Misogyny is cool." It's an excellent piece of writing, and it deserves to be read, over and over again, until it's fully understood how damaging these kinds of characters can be.
Now, remember, I'm talking about babyfaces here. Not heels. I still don't like this kind of talk coming from anyone, but if it comes from a heel, at least we know we're supposed to boo them. They're the bad guys. They say and do bad things, and we should hate them for the bad things they say and do. But babyfaces are supposed to be the good guys, the guys we root for. And I don't root for entitled, misogynist dickbags.
I have a daughter on the way. And I kind of looked forward to watching wrestling with her. Teaching her why we root for the good guys and against the bad guys. I no longer feel that way.
I think the line between good and bad is too blurry for me to see anymore.
Imagine how a child must view that line.
Okay, I'm off my soapbox now!
Onto the Monday Night Raw preview:
As always, these topics come directly from the official preview at WWE.com:
Will The Queen dare to cross The Boss on Raw?
I mean, probably. She did Tweet this, after all:
If they truly are going to let both Charlotte and Sasha finally move on to new feuds, first of all one of these two women has to win to retain. But it does feel too early for Charlotte to lose her undefeated streak at a PPV, so she should have her rematch against Sasha on Raw, and Sasha should finally be able to successfully defend that title.
Do that tonight, have Sasha win, have Charlotte beat her down after the match out of frustration, and have Bayley make the save.
Then in a post match interview backstage, have Nia Jax issue a challenge to Sasha.
Boom. Two new feuds, and two compelling Women's matches for Roadblock (End of the Line.)
Can Team Red handle this?
I honestly don't know. Cruiserweights, man.
I do know this, though. They better f*cking show this vignette that they broke out on 205Live:
That's the kind of video package they should have run back in September and maybe the Raw crowds would have cared about this guy and guys like him in the Cruiserweight Division and you wouldn't even need a show like 205Live.
Also you can stop calling him "The Outlandish" Rich Swann right f*cking now. It's not going to help get him over. It's stupid and I think you know that.
Will Sami Zayn cool off after heated exchange with Mick Foley?
I hope not. This is a great angle. Mick as the guy who broke himself for twenty years in the business, always chasing that next high, that next match, proving all his doubters wrong, and now he looks back and realizes how stupid he was, and Sami as the younger guy, emulating a hero who sees himself in the younger generation version of him, and wants to tell him to stop now before he shatters his pelvis or gets all his teeth knocked out and he has to get fake ones put in and when he yells sometimes they fall out on the ground.
I hope Sami keeps trying to prove Mick wrong, keeps demanding Braun Strowman matches and getting his ass beat but he won't stay down and finally Braun has to beat him to within an inch of his life, and he gets stretchered out, and we see Mick Foley visit him in the hospital and he tells Sami, "you don't have to keep doing this, everyone knows you're tough, but you need to stop before Braun kills you. You can't beat him," and Sami goes full John Locke and says to Mick "DON'T TELL ME WHAT I CAN'T DO."
They should make that be a thing.
And in the meantime, Braun should be putting dudes on the shelf for real. Like Darren Young steps up, and Braun squishes him, and Darren gets a two month vacation. Like he shouldn't even work the house show circuit. Have Braun do the same thing with Curtis Axel, and maybe even Jinder Mahal, too; show he doesn't play the heel/face game either. Braun gets on the mic and says there's no one in the back who I can't squash, and Big Show's music hits.
Make that a thing, too, please.
Might Seth Rollins strike again?
(I really want to punch the intern who writes these things in the face.)
Yes, intern. He might. He just might.
At any rate, I do hope that when Jericho shows up tonight, he's wheelchair bound with both arms in a sling, really milking it for all it's worth.
Is this the “End of the Line” for Kevin Owens?
So rumor has it that Vince wants to make Roman a double champ, because of Conor McGregor.
Because that doesn't reek of desperation at all.
If you want to book Roman to be your champ, that's fine, do that. But making him a double champ because it was all over the news when another guy did it in another sport, that's just weak sauce, Vince.
Besides, Seth was double champ last summer and you didn't really appear to care about making that a thing.
Oh, wait. I forgot.
Unless Roman does it, it doesn't count.
Come back tonight to follow my Live Coverage
and Join The Live Viewing Party!
Until then, I've been Alex Pawlowski
and this is me when Braun sends the whole locker room
to a nearby medical facility.