WWE TLC 2017 will go down in history as one of the strangest on record due to the last minute substitutions on the card. Not that I’m complaining, mind you. Getting to see Kurt Angle & AJ Styles compete in two terrific, once-in-a-lifetime matches was incredible. But, now that we’re five days away from Survivor Series, it’s time to look at the successes and failures that came from the fallout of TLC.
First off, Braun Strowman is a legit monster again. After a stop-and-start year, “The Monster Among Men” received a tremendous boost from the betrayal and beat down (and let’s not forget attempted murder) by Kane and Team Miz. He returned in epic fashion the next week as a massively over babyface, bringing with him a renewed fire and excitement. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed watching Braun get his revenge week-by-week on the Miztourage, and am really looking forward to his feud with Kane.
The second best thing to result from TLC is the Cruiserweight Championship feud between Enzo Amore and Kalisto. This one may come as a surprise, but Enzo has been getting a bad rap from some of the fans out there (I could probably write a whole article on my feelings about the reception Enzo has been receiving lately). However, since taking over for the disappearing Neville on 205 Live, Kalisto has become a great foil for Enzo to play off of, and it helps that they’ve been given time to talk and slowly grow as adversaries. Both have egged each other on in fun ways and it’s given me a reason to watch 205 Live again.
Now for the bad news: The biggest failure coming out of TLC has to be the execution and pay off of Alexa Bliss versus Mickie James. I’m not against Alexa or her meteoric rise at all, as a matter of fact, all hail the goddess of Monday Night Raw. And Mickie James gave one of the best heroic promos of the year after losing at TLC, proving she can still handle the mic. The first match between them was excellent and had me eager for more. But the second match was extremely rushed and made Mickie look like she didn’t belong in the same ring as Alexa. What a waste! These two incredibly talented performers deserved to have a better feud, but so far we’ve been robbed of that.
The second failure to come out of TLC was the Jason Jordan and Elias storyline. Don’t judge me, but I love Elias. I dug his gimmick in NXT, and I dig it now on Raw. However, this feud has been a pile of hot garbage, just like the vegetables Jordan ruined to get this so-called feud started. There’s been no variety – JJ interrupts Elias and they fight, rinse and repeat. There’s been no reason why they’re fighting beyond their first match, and their rematches have all felt the same. I don’t see any growth at all for either guy coming out of this – all we’ve gotten out of this feud has been a few broken guitars, plenty of yawns and wasted potential.
TLC had its ups and downs, but I’m excited to see Survivor Series this weekend. Let me know your thoughts on the Raw scene post-TLC in the comments below.