The July 22nd edition of RAW will be a very special one.
Many WWE Legends and Hall of Famers will descend onto RAW for an evening of shenanigans and burials (Guarantee DX will bury someone. Probably EC3 or Elias.)
With over 30 people confirmed and surprises on the night, there’s gonna be a few people who clearly shouldn’t be there, and a few who are missing. Here are 5 people who should have been invited to the RAW Reunion, and 5 who should have stayed at home.
1. Should have been invited: Batista
It does seem a bit weird that one of the biggest movie stars on the planet isn’t at least rumoured for the show. Granted, he could be filming a movie right now, but it surely couldn’t be that hard to bring him in for a brief 5-minute segment. They did it with Ronda Rousey after the first-ever women’s Royal Rumble in 2018 after all.
Not at least mentioning Batista would be a huge mistake. Although the bulk of his best work was on Smackdown, his breakout feud with Triple H on RAW in 2005 was the beginning of a hugely successful main event career for The Animal. An underrated wrestler and now one of the most recognisable stars on the planet, it would be a huge error on WWE’s part if they don’t at least mention Dave’s name during the broadcast.
1. Shouldn’t have been invited: The Boogeyman
Seriously, why? Out of everyone they could’ve invited, they get the bloody Boogeyman to turn up? He was never funny, his gimmick was disgusting, and he had one of the worst matches in history at No Way Out 2007, where he teamed with Little Boogeyman to face Finlay and Hornswoggle. It was just awful.
He’ll no doubt use his gimmick to spit worms down some poor jobbers’ throat (maybe Drake Maverick) and it’ll get a pop from the audience. Hopefully, that’s it, and he goes back to working backstage with WWE and never becomes The Boogeyman again.
2. Should: Edge
This is odd on two fronts.
- They don’t have an 11-time WWE/World Champion, 5-time Intercontinental Champion, 12 times Tag Champion and a Hall of Famer on the show.
- Christian is on the show. Edge won most of his tag belts with Christian and the two were one of the most over tag teams of the Attitude Era. Why is Christian on the show but not Edge? It’s very strange.
Not only have they not got one of the most decorated stars in WWE history, but they’ve also denied people the chance to see Edge’s chat show, The Cutting Edge. It was always a fun show when Edge used to do it, so why not bring it back? If nothing else, it could give a star a chance to get on TV in a very stacked show, before he inevitably gets attacked by another legend. Edge was a great wrestler in his prime, so not having him on this show is very odd.
2. Shouldn’t: Jillian Hall
No offence to Jillian Hall, but she was never that talented when she wrestled. It was even worse when she ‘sang’. She had an awful singing voice, and you immediately wanted to tear your eardrums out. She got good heat though, so I guess the gimmick kinda worked. But mostly she was just awful.
The one good thing in this is that her appearance will be (hopefully) be brief. She’ll probably get into an argument with either Elias, who is also an awful singer, or The IIconics in a battle of who’s got the most annoying voice (spoiler: It’s ALWAYS Jillian). Either way, don’t expect her on your screen for long.
3. Should: Trish Stratus
This is another weird omission. For a long time, Trish was considered the best women’s wrestler WWE had ever had. She stood out in an era when WWE focused on looks rather than ability. On the 13th December 2004, Trish, along with Lita, participated in the very first all-female main event of RAW. Add that to the fact that she remains one of the most beloved female wrestlers of all time, and it’s strange to not see her name on the list of people attending RAW Reunion.
Out of everyone on this list, Trish is the one most likely to pop up unannounced. It’d get a good pop, especially if she engages in a quick brawl with someone (Lacey or Alexa could be good options) and it would once again fuel rumours of another return to action for Trish.
3. Shouldn’t: Santino Marella
This is an odd one. Unlike The Boogeyman, Santino was actually a successful comedic wrestler. He made a huge impression by winning the Intercontinental Championship in his very first match in WWE. He didn’t hold it for long, but he made an impression on everyone. He then became more comedic, with various degrees of success (For every Cobra, there was a Santina Marella). He peaked in 2012 when he was mere seconds away from becoming the World Heavyweight Champion.
As funny as he once was, is he really worth tuning in for? He’ll no doubt be involved in some shenanigans of some sort, probably involving the 24/7 title, but it’ll be brief at best and will be forgotten about 10 minutes later. You’ll see it, and then wish they focused more on Drake Maverick and R Truth.
4. Should: Lita
Along with Trish, Lita was one of the standout female stars in the 2000’s era of WWE. She participated in the first women’s main event with Trish and frequently got involved in The Hardy Boyz matches (often without success it must be said). She had also retained her popularity throughout the years, so it’d be strange to not see her at RAW Reunion.
Like Trish, it wouldn’t be that huge a surprise to see Lita at RAW Reunion. If WWE felt brave, they could tease a Trish/Lita vs The IIconics match for the WWE Women’s Tag Team Titles. They probably won’t do that though, so just expect a brief cameo to get a pop from the crowd.
4. Shouldn’t: Kelly Kelly
Like Jillian Hall, Kelly Kelly was never the most talented of wrestlers. She started young (She first appeared when she was just 19) and was first introduced to viewers with a strip teasing gimmick. She wrestled infrequently, and every time she got into the ring, she looked awful. It wasn’t all her fault. She was still young and should have stayed in developmental for a while before moving up.
She did improve as the years go on. However, does she really deserve a place amongst Legends and Hall of Famers? Although a former Divas Champion and a decent wrestler, she might represent a time that WWE would like its fans to forget.
5. Should: CM Punk
I know, I know. I can already hear you scoffing as you read this. However, the first part of this article is 5 people who SHOULD have been invited. He wouldn’t have accepted it, there’s too much bad blood, but WWE could have at least TRIED to get him to appear.
Whether you like him or not, you can’t argue the impact that Punk had in WWE. Loathed by much higher up’s, Punk fought for years to gain recognition in WWE. Eventually, after a few mishaps, he became a genuine megastar in WWE, with his name still chanted by WWE fans today, although at this point it’s done in irony rather than adulation. Punk might never return to WWE, but this invite could have been a tiny step forward in mending the broken relationship between Phil ‘CM Punk’ Brooks and WWE.
5. Shouldn’t: Hulk Hogan
Again, I can you hear you scoffing as you read this. You’re probably saying: ‘WWE forgave him, why can’t you?’ The fact is, we shouldn’t have to. What Hulk did (the racism and the homophobic slurs) shouldn’t be forgiven, particularly in a company promoting LGBTQ equality and representation.
You cannot, in 2019, have a guy who has openly admitted to racist and homophobic comments in the past, on your TV. If this was any other TV show, people would be frequently calling for the owners’ head. But because Vince McMahon thinks that WWE fans have short memories, he’ll keep dragging Hulk out, hoping fans will forgive and forget. The problem with that is, not all fans will, and they’ll be sure to let Hulk Hogan know that.
You can find the author of this article on Twitter @Bannister007. Thanks for reading!