Someone from a famous pro-wrestling website said that RAW 25 was going to be bigger than any Raw after-Mania ever.
I guess he meant in terms of size since the show was (poorly) broadcasted from not one but two locations (Barclays Center and the Manhattan Center – the latter hosted the very first edition of Monday Night Raw back in 1993). Otherwise, I wouldn’t even dare to compare the weight of the two shows.
Let’s make it clear RAW 25 is a total effing fiasco. No storylines were really developed, contemporary stars only occupied 25% of the show, and the biggest segment dedicated to them was none other than Elias (who I honestly dig very much, making the most out of every opportunity) against John Cena – featuring a cameo of Jimmy Fallon who really seemed to not like the show.
The other 75% legends returning, legends cameo and long-ass legends segments.
Don’t get me wrong: I love seeing Stone Cold coming back and raising hell, but at least let him cut a promo, do not just have him raise his middle finger on a TV-PG show.
The segment was fine, and I liked how Vince McMahon (with more and dyed hair for his upcoming press conference on the 25th) returned, genuinely, in his heel persona.
But, as someone else said, it was downhill from there.
We had an interesting but predictable 4-on-4 women tag team match (Asuka, Bayley, Sasha, Mickie James vs Alicia Fox, Sonya Deville, Mandy Rose, Nia Jax), which ultimately led to nothing but a victory for the faces and Asuka standing tall at the end of the match after throwing her teammates outside the ring… over the top rope.
There was only one match announced: Roman Reigns defending his Intercontinental Championship against The Miz. The contest was fun and it was really noteworthy when it came down to involving the Miztourage members. Anyhow, The Miz won his 8th IC title with a dirty win (obviously). And I think result-wise was the highlight of the night, with the following photo on WWE’s Instagram about to become a meme:
There were only three more matches.
Bray Wyatt vs Woken Matt Hardy, taking place at the Manhattan Center, with Bray picking up the win in a very short bout that honestly, I don’t see a point in happening.
A stupid tag team match between Heath Slater & Rhyno and Titus Worldwide (Apollo Crews and Titus O’Neal), which ended in no-contest, led to the run-in of the Dudley Boyz who destroyed Slater.
Last but not the least a very short match with Anderson & Gallows against The Revival. This match, taking place also at the Manhattan Center, followed the DX (Shawn Michaels, Triple H, The New Age Outlaws and X-Pac – but they gave a shout out to both Chyna and Rick Rude) and Scott ‘Razor Ramon’ Hall. The Balòr Club came out, too sweeted them and then the Revival came out to start the fast and unpainful match. At least we know the Balòr Club is bound to do something.
Most of the episode was random segment like a poker game between legends (including MVP, hopefully, he’ll be at the Rumble Sunday) and Slater & Rhyno (which led to the tag team match).
You had that Undertaker (return?) promo which was so enigmatic that I honestly have no clue what was the point of it. Maybe he’s part of the Rumble on Sunday?
Then you had a bunch of parades: the Women’s legends (without Lita) and the former Raw GMs (plus Daniel Bryan). Plus backstage segments with interviews of Charlotte (and father) and AJ Styles (channeling his inner Hulk Hogan – who obviously wasn’t part of the show). The funniest segment overall was the Mark Henry/Godfather segment.
Oh, the Main Event? A segment between Braun Strowman, Kane and Lesnar, which lasted less than 7 minutes, where Braun powerslammed Brock on the table, celebrating alone in the ring to close the show.
Honestly, RAW 25 was just a trip down memory lane, but it should have been something like Raw 1000, advancing storylines more than just celebrating the series.
Oh well, it will be for the 30th anniversary I guess.