The Raw after WrestleMania was filled with debuts from the NXT roster, as well as the return of Cesaro. But aside from a change in the Intercontinental title picture, and the announcement of the next number one contender, everything remained exactly the same during Shane McMahon’s turn in control of Monday Night Raw. Spending more time in the back than in front of the cameras, it felt less like he was in control of the show and more like he was just a special guest as everything played out as previously planned. There was nothing added to the show that stood out enough to justify Shane’s involvement, and he seemed disconnected from the entire experience as the night went on. It was more of a wasted opportunity than a well earned privilege for his sacrifice the night before, and that’s a shame.
Another shame is how the audience acted during the women’s title segment of the show. Not allowing Charlotte to speak and showing absolute disrespect to all of the women in the division, I’m glad that JBL addressed the incident by stating how rude the crowd was. A good audience can make even a stale episode of Raw feel enjoyable. But if they’re more concerned with making themselves look good on television, then the whole show suffers from it. It’s okay to have fun, especially considering that they paid to attend the event, but showing some form of respect would cast a better light on them than being outright rude.
But despite the crowd being all over the place, there was one thing that they were on the same page about. They showed absolutely no love whatsoever for Roman Reigns last night. Even mentioning his name and displaying still pictures of him were met with vicious jeers.And when Roman’s music finally hit, it was deafening from the audience. They were even consistent enough to boo over his entire promo as a way to show that they have zero interest in him. And while JBL tried to explain to the home audience that this crowd cheers and boos superstars they normally wouldn’t, there was no justifying the massive amount of disinterest the audience showed to WWE’s hand picked top face of the company. But instead of pretending that the massive dislike from the crowd isn’t there like he usually does, Reigns went a different route this time.
Holding up the belt and soaking up the boos, Reigns cut an extremely short promo that played off the reaction he received in a very heelish way. In fact, his demeanor on the way to the ring was slightly different as well. And as the segment went on, and the four participants for the number one contender slot entered the ring to bicker between themselves, Reigns seemed very dismissive of everyone in the ring. His arrogance showed like never before, and he showed clear signs of a heel change in the future. And just when you thought the obvious choice to become number one contender would be Kevin Owens to give Reigns a solid heel to work with, AJ Styles wins the position instead solidifying that a Reigns heel turn just might be the direction this storyline is headed.
If WWE still wanted to get the fans behind Reigns, then the last thing they would do to achieve that is put him in the ring with a huge fan favorite. That’s basically guaranteeing him to be booed out of the building. So unless that is the desired result, then AJ Styles vs Roman Reigns will do nothing but hurt Roman even more. It’s obvious WWE has finally caved in and accepted that going against the grain will do nothing but embarrass the company even more. So we can all take this Monday as a step in the right direction for Reigns if it turns out that this is the beginning of a slow heel turn.
We’ll just have to be patient and stick around to see how things pan out for Reigns. Because at the moment he’s getting “go away” heat from the crowd. But his smug performance last night is indication that he could become the biggest heel in the company if handled right, and he seems completely comfortable in the role so far. And with so many NXT superstars entering in to the main roster, most fan favorites, WWE could definitely benefit from a new top heel. Let’s just hope they go through with it and get it right. But if they don’t and continue to hold on to hope that they will eventually get him over with the fans, then the savage jeers he received will continue.