The “Power Is Back” video plays followed by a recap of Jim Ross being fired because we all wanted to re-live that moment, obviously. The Raw video then plays and we go right into it as Vince McMahon’s music hits. Vince welcomes everyone and talks about Taboo Tuesday and how Bischoff was challenged to make a unique main event. Here’s hoping for a six man match and the people choose the stipulation (cough-Elimination-Chamber-cough). Vince goes on to talk about JR and something shiny catches my eye so I get a bit distracted. ADD really does suck at times, but not during some Raw segments. Great, Vince informs us that Linda will be here live since we all love to see her and her academy award worthy acting. Apparently, there is a rumor going on about Austin being there tonight. Is this a legit rumor or something Vince just thought up while talking for an eternity? Oh, jeez; the crowd chants “asshole” and Vince responds by “stop telling me what you think of your hometown.” What an idiotic reply to a crowd chant when I don’t think I’ve ever heard someone refer to a city or town as an “asshole.” If anyone else used that line, they would be pushed down the card so fast it would make their tights rip. A “Homage to JR” video is then shown which is basically just highlighting all the times JR got his ass kicked in WWE. Funny video, but definitely overkill in this already drawn out segment. Vince then brings out Coach, decked out like JR, who is apparently the new lead announcer. Just when you thought WWE could reach no lower, Coach is made lead announcer. I just realized you can’t even make out what his dumb rap imitation music is trying to say; great choice of music there. Coach then grabs the mike and keeps the drawn out segment going and going and going. Where is the Energizer bunny when you need him? Coach talks about JR and taking over and something he over-accentuated; I need to put that shiny foil away if I’m going to review this.
Kurt Angle then catches up with Vince McMahon and says he should be number one contender for beating Cena last week. Hurricane then flies in and the comedy follows, naturally. Hurricane does the sound effect and Vince just looks at him with that annoyed look going, “You’re a little late on the sound effect, but go ahead.” See, that’s the McMahon fire back we know, not telling a crowd that they are chanting “asshole” at their hometown. Hurricane talks, in his own unique, crowd-pleasing manner, and uses more C words than I think the dictionary can handle in talking about Coach. What is up with that? God, Hurricane is gold. Remember those segments with the Rock? Priceless. Vince McMahon again brings back the “asshole boss” character we love by looking around a bit and answering Hurricane by just telling Angle to sic him. Angle follows, because he’s Angle, and he takes Hurricane out to the ring and beats the ever-loving piss out of him. Definitely a Triple H-style beat down, but with the vicious angle they are going with Kurt, it makes some sense. Of course, everyone watching at home, including me, starts marking out a bit when Hurricane makes his comeback for the pure hope that Hurricane will actually come out on top for once. Of course, it didn’t happen. Of course, Hurricane fans died a little bit inside. Angle was great on the beat-down though with chokes, punches, and just that look of “I’m going to kill you.” During this segment, you definitely get a foreshadow for the bad commentating to come as Coach gets a novel line to say about Hurricane and repeats it three or four times to kill time. I’m a pretty bad commentator, but Coach? Coach reaches new level of talent-less garbage. Angle eventually locks in the Ankle Lock and Hurricane screams for pain as the refs come out to break it up. WWE then does the gimmick of having a camera in the parking lot waiting for whoever is supposed to show up. They then hype up Carlito’s Cabana and we go to the first break.
Commercial break times one equals a fifteen minute stretch of horrible crowd interaction and mike skills which even a cool beat down couldn’t save.
Coach is then welcomed out by King and they do some stupid interaction thing I didn’t pay attention to again. I really should put the shiny foil away, but it’s a godsend for when Coach is on the camera. Vince is then backstage with Bischoff and he kisses Vince’s ass in an insecure way about the beat-down. Taboo Tuesday then comes up and Vince says he wants to do what they haven’t done before and give the fans choices and empower them. Excuse me, if you’re just now doing that, are you admitting that the polls were fixed last year? He wants a compelling main event for the audience. Bischoff then says it’s a Triple Threat match with John Cena against Kurt Angle against someone the audience will choose; three men who will win three qualifying matches. Shawn Michaels against Carlito, Big Show against Edge, and a battle royal with eighteen superstars (which I guarantee you Kane will be in and will win). No offense, but this is extremely predictable. You know Michaels is going over and he will win the voting. I guarantee you that Edge and Kane will win the other two and will lose the voting and be put in a match on Taboo Tuesday to further their feud that was stopped in its tracks earlier this year. Vince then gets a look like he just got orally pleasured and we go into our first qualifying match.
Taboo Tuesday Qualifying Match
Edge Vs. Big Show
Match starts off like a typical Big Show match with Big Show using his size to do a butt bump on Edge and throw Edge out. Not bad, but then again, not a novel idea.
Commercial break times two equals a disappointed reviewer because of the Taboo Tuesday main event.
From here, the match was good, in my opinion. I loved Edge working over Big Show’s arm so he couldn’t do the Chokeslam, but some of the submission holds he got onto Edge weren’t really believable. They made sense for anyone else, but Big Show is so big that all he needed to do was stand up and Edge’s hold would have been broken. At one point, that almost did happen though and made for a nice spot as Big Show stood up and lifted Edge out in a unique suplex to take him out and transition the match. Edge was great in control and the little things he did like the springboard elbow drop as Big Show was draped over or just dropping down so Big Show ran straight into the turnbuckle made the match enjoyable. I’d like to see a PPV style match between the two; I’m pretty confident with more build-up and some more time, it could be a damn fine match. Finish came when Edge hit the spear (which Coach called the Gore and screamed it like Paul Heyman; thank you, stupidity poster boy) and almost got the win. He then went for a chair, but tossed it at the ref. As the ref went for it, Lita handed Edge the briefcase and Edge went to hit Show with it, but JBL’s music played. Edge was distracted long enough to let Show recover and hit the Chokeslam for the win. Wow; I can’t believe Show won this one.
Winner: Big Show
Star Wrestler: Edge
I am truly shocked Big Show won this one. With the way they are building up Edge and given last year’s history, you would think they would put him in there. Then again, they already have the same style of main event as well as one of the same choices; why expose the trite nature of the PPV some more? Anyway, Edge was really good in this match and the guy has made some amazing strides this year by working with Benoit, Michaels, and especially his feud with Hardy. Edge working over the arm was a stretch of credibility at times, but in all, he stayed on it and used some great intelligence and selling to make a Big Show match stand out above the giant genre.
They do the stupid recaps and hype up the Cabana again and we go to a break.
Commercial break times three equals Edge being screwed once more. It’s all a massive conspiracy against Canadians, I tell you.