Saturday, June 27, 2015

Raw History: Episode 4

Monday Night Raw “RIP Andre” [4]
February 1st, 1993 – Manhattan Center in Manhattan, New York

Can the WWF continue off of a great episode of Raw? Let's find out. For the first time, we go straight into a match. Commentary is back to Vince McMahon, Macho Man and Rob Bartlett.

Damien Damento vs. Tatanka
I must have missed it on the first episode but Damien Damento is introduced as hailing from the “outer reaches of your mind.” Tatanka hits a hip toss and body slam before knocking Damento outside. Instead of regrouping, Damento decides it's best to talk to the heavens for some reason. Back inside, Damento uses an eye rake to take control and he connects with a big clothesline. Damento continues with a big leg drop for a near fall. Vince reminds us that Tatanka is undefeated. Damento is getting in way more offense than I expected as he uses a rest hold to wear down the Native American. He rallies out and no sells a shot to the turnbuckle. He must be a Braves fan as he Tomahawk Chops and dances around before finishing off Damento.

Winner: Tatanka in 4:10
Nothing match really. Damento controlled too much of it for Tatanka to be impressive to me. *1/4

In a cool video, we see highlights of the WWF's recent live event at Madison Square Garden for “Headlock on Hunger.” It shows Bret Hart presenting a check for charity.

We return to see Vince McMahon in the ring as he is going to interview a returning great. It's Brutus “The Barber” Beefcake. So, I guess we're false advertising now huh? They discuss his parasailing injury and how he's returning now. He talks about the rough times that he has had lately including getting a divorce and having family members die. They're showing shots of the crowd and they GIVE NO CARES. That is, until Beefcake mentions Hulk Hogan! Nope, they're still dull. It's an incredibly strange promo as he's just rambling. I hated this segment.

High Energy vs. “Iron” Mike Sharpe and Von Crush
The ring girls are terrible looking, even the ones who are not purposely ugly. For those who are unaware, Von Crush is the future Vito and he's not in good shape. Neither is Mike Sharpe, but he's awesome so it's okay. Sharpe and Owen start. While Sharpe overpowers Owen, he uses hit athleticism to take over. Double team offense works although they allow Sharpe to tag in Vito. I guess they figure he's an easier target. Koko hits a missile dropkick that allows Owen to get a rollup and a win.

Winners: High Energy in 1:31
Really short and not much happened. SQUASH

We go to a video of Doink attacking Crush with his fake arm on Superstars two weeks ago. This would keep Crush out of the Royal Rumble and he won't be returning for a few weeks.

Doink the Clown vs. Typhoon
Add Typhoon to the list of guys that I don't recall lasting long in 1993. Doink wisely goes for the big man's legs and shows that he's such a good wrestler. I just remembered that Typhoon would go on to have a SHOCKING debut in WCW soon. Doink continues to work various holds to wear down Typhoon until he breaks free and applies a bearhug. Doink rakes the eyes to break it and goes back to a front face lock. Typhoon gets out and hits a slam but misses a corner splash. Doink hits a second rope shoulder block and earns the win with a handful of tights.

Winner: Doink in 3:11
Boring contest that too many slow and wear down holds. It made sense but wasn't fun. *1/2

Vince McMahon interviews Todd Pettengill about WWF Mania before we go to a ten bell salute for Andre the Giant, who had recently passed. We then get the ICOPRO and Slim Jim commercials, however, sandwiched in between was the awesome Hasbro action figure commercial. It makes me all nostalgic.

Bobby DeVito vs. Yokozuna w/ Mr. Fuji
Macho Man does such a great job at putting over talent, he's easily been the bright spot on commentary. Bobby DeVito is the future ECW Baldie, Tony DeVito. DeVito charges at Yokozuna like an idiot and it fails. Jim Duggan calls in because he is challenging Yokozuna. He's not too bright. While he rambles, Yokozuna continues to squash DeVito and ends it with the Banzai Drop.

Winner: Yokozuna in 2:02
Another squash. Tonight has not really had any competitive matches. SQUASH

Vince McMahon conducts a ringside interview with the WWF Tag Team Champions, Money Inc. Vince tries to get the fans to boo Ted Dibiase but it doesn't work so well. They badmouth Brutus Beefcake until Jimmy Hart comes out to try and get them to chill out even though he's their manager. Money Inc. challenges Beefcake next week to face either one of them.

Before the next match, The Narcissist poses in front of a mirror in the ring until he's interrupted by the sight of the biggest ring girl ever. We also see the incredible Mr. Perfect football vignette. The one where he throws the football to himself and his theme hits. You could say, it's the perfect vignette.

Jason Knight vs. The Narcissist
In a continuing trend of future ECW wrestlers doing jobs, Jason Knight would face the Narcissist in his first match. Lex Luger screamed natural heel to me. He poses after nearly every single move he hits. Luger busts out the EDDIE GILBERT hot shot and I'm upset that it has taken four episodes for this to happen. Luger misses a forearm badly and the fans tell him that he missed it so he just does it again. He pins with only his pinkie.

Winner: The Narcissist in 2:38
Another squash. Not a great show from a match standpoint. SQUASH

Lex Luger does a Cesaro Swing, but an incredibly poor version, after the match. They then advise us that Raw will be back in two weeks because the Dog Show airs next week.

Overall: 3/10; Bad. The first Raw that I can truly say I did not like. They managed to get in five matches but three of them were straight squashes and the other two weren't very good. The Beefcake segment was ridiculously strange. The WWF fails to build on the strong third episode.