FEEDBACK: WWE Raw 8/16/21

What did you think of WWE Raw?

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I am hoping that the Smackdown side of Summer Slam really delivers because as of tonight’s go-home show, there’s not a lot that’s exciting me. Lashley v Goldberg feels moribund, the women’s triple threat hasn’t really given me anyone to cheer for, and unless there’s an actual beheading, I don’t see how Drew v Jinder is going to bring much excitement. (Also, can someone please tell Drew to stop walking around with the damn sword on his shoulder before he cuts his own arm off?)

The brightest lights from Raw are currently Priest v Sheamus, which should at least be a solid match, and RKBro, who remain the one thing on the show that audiences are consistently getting behind. I feel like if they’d moved the story along a little faster, we could have had Miz and Morrison split and go one-on-one at Summer Slam. When it does happen, I suspect that will be entertaining.

I was truly not prepared to see Nia, the woman who brought us “Ow my hole”, debut a sort of new-age stink face maneuver as part of her tag match with Charlotte. Her inclusion in that seemed weird unless she’s going to be the challenger for Charlotte post-Slam.

This was the go home show for the biggest Summerslam of all time - on a week featuring one of the biggest stars of the last decade returning to “not competition” and the few segments of Raw I caught (Niki Rhea, Morrison, Jinder) felt as uninspired as anything the company did over the past 18 months. Maybe worse because they have a crowd there now.

Did WWE just give up on owning the news cycle headed into Summer Slam? Are they that defeated they can’t even dig deep and create a noteworthy go home show for the 40k seats they sold?

Zoom out: WWE has been in the news section of your shows for roster cuts and who’s not in the company more than anything else. They have zero “Momentum” on the Raw side, and are relying heavily on Cena returning who himself is even winking at the CM Punk return.
I couldn’t tell you if SummerSlam was this week or next weekend and I keep up with stuff. The UpNXT Summer feuds are built better than most of this stuff on Raw. Shout out Dickie Bird.
And what’s with House shows for fans and the top talent is just missing - after fans waited a year + and talent spoke about how much they missed the fans, now they just aren’t there? WTF is this company doing?

Is it fair to say objectively speaking WWE has never been lower while about to run their biggest Summer Slam ever. The novelty of wwe fans being back is gone. The headlines are for the wrong reasons. The returning stars barely make a dent and are borderline not wanted by many groups of fans. This is a pretty amazing period in WWE history. I think we’ll look back on this stretch for decades to come - good or bad.

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