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OO BATTLE OF THE BRANDS   
RAW vs. SmackDown!:  Who Wins?  

Week Ending December 19, 2003

Featuring Many Current and Past OO Columnists 
Ratings Compiled by Jeb Lund

 

OOficial Brand of the Week:
RAW

RAW:
3.20 --/-- SD!: 2.92

RATING SYSTEM: Rather than go with a tried-and-true 1-10 scale, we thought we'd mix things up a bit. Each show is evaluated on a scale of 0.0-5.0. Instead of just random numbers, those numbers reflect what sort of Nielsen rating we think the show deserves. Granted, we're operating on the assumption that 5.0 is about the best the WWE can hope for right now. But if someone goes for a 5.0, then that means it's time to celebrate at Titan. If someone picks 2.2, it's time to celebrate if you're putting on a Nitro in April 2000. 

RAW (12/15/03) vs. SMACKDOWN! (12/18/03)  
OOFICIAL RATINGS

Canadian Bulldog
RAW: 3.0
 
The good: I know most people are going to be down on the Foley angle, but don't forget this was done with some purpose. I truly don't think that Mick, the quintessential storyteller who's only working part-time for the company, would have come back and do this if there WASN'T a solid purpose behind it. It was an original finish; I'll give it that. Let's put it this way: how many people will be tuning in next week to see where this angle ends up? I'd bet more than last week.... Jericho v. Kane was a satisfactory main event, though I'm SHOCKED they didn't bring up the pair's past history with coffee. Seriously though, it wasa nice way to keep the Trish angle going without pushing Y2J as a face just yet.... The handicap match wasn't bad, either, and it keeps with the Four Horsemen '03 motif that Evolution seem to be going for.... Goldberg squashing Coach and La Resistance, besides being a damned good idea, was a creative way for him to be off television for a while. De-activate in peace now, big guy.

 
The bad: John Heidenreich tops my list of people I'd be perfectly happy never to see again. His match with Rico absolutely stunk.... I don't understand why they can't hand the airtime these losers use over to someone like Matt Hardy who can actually do something with a push. Yes, I know the team of Matt Hardy Version 1.0 and Fat Albert Version 2.0 (Mark Henry) were in a match this week, but honestly, what purpose did it serve?

SmackDown:  2.5
The good: Shannon Moore is growing on me. His continued push, which I still think reeks of Paul Heyman (ewwww) is working well. Both Moore and Brock put on a decent quick little match. It differs from the usual `Brock squashes little guy, film at eleven' type match because it actually served a purpose. Lesnar is actually showing a ton of charisma these days and seems to have found his niche as the ass-kicking but still cowardly heel. The fatal four tag team match was fun and painless. I don't know exactly what Dawn Marie's role is on SmackDown, but - wow - I want to find out more about that.

The bad: Big Show v. Orlando Jordan; Chris Benoit v. Chuck Palumbo; Rhyno v. Faarooq; Bob Holly & Moore v. Matt Morgan & A-Train - ENOUGHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! Who, in their right mind, wanted to see any of these matches? What, did they film a house show by accident this week? It reminds me of those lame Coliseum Home Videos from the early 90's where Sean Mooney would try to tell us that fans ESPECIALLY REQUESTED the match we were about to see between Koko B. Ware and Kato. "Cat-O is a very dangerous competitor from Japan," Lord Alfred Hayes might pipe in. "He can beat any competitor on any given night." Shut up, Your Lordship! Kato was a jobber with a ski mask and shitty red tights. He isn't about to go over Koko B. Ware, Frankie the Bird, hell, even Sean F'ing Mooney!!! Sorry, off on a tangent there...

I'm not saying every match has to be ultra-competitive; I just don't want to see the same boring guys in the same boring matches, week after week after week. They could have done, using the exact same competitors, for example: Holly v. A-Train; Benoit v. Big Showl; Rhyno v. Moore and FBI v. APA (assuming Bradshaw was actually there) and Orlando Jordan. Though not ideal, those matches would have seemed fresh and much more competitive.

Finally, let's address The Cat. To channel the spirit of Dr. Seuss:

I do not, do not, like The Cat
I can not, can not, stand his act
I'd prefer not to watch him here, or there
He should not be used anywhere
Not in a car, not on a tree,
Not on Heat or Velocity
His push isn't right; it's just not fair,
Please fire The Cat; we do not care

Canadian Bulldog's year-to-date averages: RAW (3.1), SD! (2.9).


The Cubs' Fan 

RAW: 1.8
Here's the deal: If, sometime in March, this Orton/Foley stuff rules so much it makes up for the end of this weeks RAW's sucking so much, I'll actually do one of this and over rate RAW to make up for it - like a 5 or maybe a 7 if I can time mailing this while Rick's enjoying his weekend beverages.

I don't see the point of giving a big number now based on the "give them a break now because it'll rule in the end", because that's not exactly what's happened for a long time - the usual pattern is that if it sucks in the beginning, it'll continue to suck until they decide to find a way to end it as quickly as possible and never mention it again. (See: anything with Kane.)

I have this total lack of faith in the WWE to pull (and that's only because that were doing well enough with the Women's Title stuff, till they skipped that last part) because they've tried and failed or tried and sucked too many times.

Everything else was okay, not as much "trying to get this done with and get home" as SmackDown! felt. Call me when Jericho actually turns, not just when he's teasing about it. I didn't get into the handicap match much but there wasn't something wrong with it. Jon/Rico is the kind of thing I make up some excuse for to fast forward past on Heat.

Smackdown!: 2.9
I wonder - if the drugs would've kicked in to prevent Cole from reflexing bring up how SmackDown! was going to Iraq next week, if it would have given him time to explain why Scotty and Rikishi's #1 Contender win didn't mean much, why Shaniqua joined back with the Bashams and when Rey might get to act on being the #1 contender.

Tag title match aside, this really had the feeling of a holding pattern, for next week and for the Rumble. Perhaps I'm just discounting the shocking return of Faarooq too much.

I thought the four way suffered from being a four way and not having as much flow as a one on one defense would've. Chuck vs Benoit was good and I wonder if there's any long term plan for Chuck. I wish Rey/Noble would've been on Velocity so they would've gotten more time.

The Cubs' Fan's year-to-date averages: RAW (2.9), SD! (3.4).

 
Matt Hocking
RAW:  3.8
JR: Mick Foley is LEAVING BY GAWD!!
JL: Where is he going! Why?
MF: What if I got hungry? Maybe I left to go get a burger!
JL: Maybe!
JR: By GAWD! What a match between HBK/RVD and The Evolution!
JL: Speaking of which...Our guest this week is RVD!
RVD: Dude, who do I have to piss off around here to get some attention?
JR: You're getting some right now! Say something!
RVD: Uh...whoa. Ok...Uh...I've got the munchies!
JR: The MUNCHIES, KING! His feet learned that at Yale!
JL: I don't know about that J.R., but I do know that Chris Jericho is an 
innocent man.
JR: Like hell he is.
RVD: Uh, what about me?
HHH: Shut up. It's ratin' time.
RVD: I'm not rating nothin' in protest.
JL: 5!
JR: 5!
MF: Does anyone have three dollars and eighty cents I can borrow? Burgers 
are expensive!
HHH: There's your rating. 3.8. Everybody out.

SmackDown!:  3.3
MC: That's weird...what are our major feuds, Tazz?
TZ: Uh...Cena/Big Show...Hardcore Holly/Brock Lesner and...uh...Vince 
McMahon/The Cat?
EM: Earnest "The Cat" Miller is the New Steve Austin, baby!
TZ: Vince is a better dancer than you.
EM: Somebody call my momma.
MC: I tried, but she just hung up on me.
EM: Nobody wants to talk to you.
TZ: You know, it's funny. We've got some pretty good matches and two ok 
stories, but nothing interesting going on here. The most compelling 
character is Shannon Moore.
MC: What about Dawn?
TZ: What about Shannon?
MC: Yeah, but what about Dawn?
EM: I'm givin' the show a 6! Ow! Lamont, let me dance baby!
MC: How did you get him from the APA anyway? Oh well. 6?
TZ: You are both morons. Moore-ons. Whatever. 3.3.

Matt's year-to-date averages: RAW (3.6), SD! (3.3).

Big Danny T 
RAW: 3.8
Very good show. How good? Normally I simply record it and watch it Tuesday upon getting home from work. This week, I was kept up all the way to Mick walking out on his match with Randy Orton. Good beginning (WWE is doing a good job in salvaging the Jericho/Trish/Christian triangle), an intriguing ending (Anyone else notice that the bell never rang to start the match? You can sure as shit bet that that will be the hook that keeps Mick on the show) and everything in between Just clicked really well (HBK/RVD vs. Evolution was the best match of the show). The only real down point was Rico vs. John Hrrnrnrrnrnr. Hopefully, Raw will just keep getting better.

Smackdown!: 3.0
Just an “Ehh” show this week. Feel free to check the recap out.

Danny's year-to-date averages: RAW (3.5), SD! (3.6).

 
Rick Scaia
 
RAW: 3.6 
Yes, the ending was a let-down.  But now, it wasn't a show-spoiling cop-out.  Rather, I quickly came to view it as a compelling cliff-hanger.  Sure that came after several profanity laced tirades pointed at my TV, but the point is, it came.  The five-man tag was the match of the week, and that counts the (disappointing) Armageddon PPV.  The introduction of Jericho vs. Christian should keep Jericho/Trish fresh and interesting.  The promo between Bischoff and Foley was excellent, and I'm a sucker for well done tribute videos like the one they had for Mick.  If only they could pick some non-shitty music for these...  anyway, end result is a strong rating for RAW this week, with only a few tenths deducted for the non-finish. 

SmackDown!: 2.9 
What can I say that I didn't already say in OO today?  Outside of Cat/Vince, nothing on this show really annoyed me.  But nothing came even close to grabbing me, either.  Not only was it a "down" week in terms of the in-ring work on SD!, but storyline and sizzle-wise, this was a show that didn't do anything for me.  Such is the risk you take when you build an entire show around Hardcore Holly, says I...

Rick's year-to-date averages: RAW (3.3), SD! (3.7).

FINAL OO RATINGS, WEEK ENDING 12/19/03

RAW average: 3.20
Actual Nielsen Rating: 3.0 (converted to broadcast rating)  
RAW OVERdelivers versus actual rating this week.

SmackDown! average: 2.92 
Actual Nielsen Rating:  3.4   
SD! UNDERdelivers versus actual rating this week.

YEAR TO DATE TALLIES

Average OO Rating for RAW:  3.16 
Average Nielsen Rating for RAW: 3.13 

RAW is OVERdelivering, on average, versus actual ratings so far in 2003.

Average OO Rating for SD: 3.36 
Average Nielsen Rating for SD:  3.35 

SD! is OVERdelivering, on average, versus actual ratings so far in 2003.

Rounds Won by RAW: 11 
Rounds Won by SD!: 17  
Current Streak: 1 by RAW (Since 12/19/03) 
Longest Streak: 7 by SD! (6/27/03 thru 8/08/03)

BROWSE PAST WEEK'S BATTLES OF THE BRANDS   Shop at Amazon.com


  
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Bonding Exercises
 
RAW RECAP: The New Guy Blows It
 
PPV RECAP: WWE Night of Champions 2012
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: 18 Seconds? NO! NO! NO!
 
RAW RECAP: The Show Must Go On
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: The Boot Gets the Boot
 
RAW RECAP: Heyman Lands an Expansion Franchise
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Losing is the new Winning
 
RAW RECAP: Say My Name
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Deja Vu All Over Again
 
RAW RECAP: Dignity Before Gold?
 
PPV RECAP: SummerSlam 2012
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Backfired!
 
RAW RECAP: Bigger IS Better
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Hitting with Two Strikes
 
RAW RECAP: Heel, or Tweener?
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Destiny Do-Over
 
RAW RECAP: CM Punk is Not a Fan of Dwayne
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: The Returnening
 
RAW RECAP: Countdown to 1000
 
PPV RECAP: WWE Money in the Bank 2012
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Friday Night ZackDown
 
RAW RECAP: Closure's a Bitch
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: In-BRO-pendence Day
 
RAW RECAP: Crazy Gets What Crazy Wants
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Five Surprising MitB Deposits
 
RAW RECAP: Weeeellll, It's a Big MitB
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: #striketwo
 
RAW RECAP: Johnny B. Gone
 
PPV RECAP: WWE No Way Out 2012
 
RAW RECAP: Crazy Go Nuts
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: You're Welcome
 
RAW RECAP: Be a Star, My Ass
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Needs More Kane?
 
RAW RECAP: You Can't See Him
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Lady Power
 
RAW RECAP: Big Johnny Still in Charge
 
PPV RECAP: WWE Over the Limit 2012
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: One Gullible Fella
 
RAW RECAP: Anvil, or Red Herring?
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Everybody Hates Berto
 
RAW RECAP: Look Who's Back
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Care to go Best of Five?
 
RAW RECAP: An Ace Up His Sleeve
 
PPV RECAP: WWE Extreme Rules 2012
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Sh-Sh-Sheamus and the nOObs
 
RAW RECAP: Edge, the Motivational Speaker?
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: AJ is Angry, Jilted
 
RAW RECAP: Maybe Cena DOES Suck?
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: No! No! No!
 
RAW RECAP: Brock's a Jerk
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Back with a Bang
 
RAW RECAP: Yes! Yes! Yes!
 
PPV RECAP: WWE WrestleMania 28

 

 

 


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