Friday, September 30, 2016

Raw #204 - April 7th, 1997

Mankind’s flash-paper fireball attack on the Undertaker from last week is this week’s cold opening, complete with dramatic music and slow motion. Tonight, Vince says that Shawn Michaels is going to “get a load off his chest.” Whose load it is remains unclear. Owen Hart and the British Bulldog come to the ring with their respective flags to wrestle a non-title tag team match. Owen Hart grabs the mic and praises his brother Bret for filling his family with love, then calls the audience, “haters”, years before the word would be run into the ground by social media.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Raw #203 - March 31st, 1997


Raw (is War) opens without its Marilyn Manson intro while “Thorn in Your Eye” plays throughout the arena. I guess Manson and his record company didn’t appreciate all the free publicity Vince was giving him! Tonight, The British Bulldog defends the European title for the first time, facing the man he beat to win the title, Owen Hart. Hart dropkicks his tag team partner as he tries to enter the ring. A flying body press fails to put Bulldog away in the opening seconds, so Hart delivers a blatant kick to the groin in full view of the referee. The match continues anyway between the two “brother-in-laws”, as Vince repeatedly calls them. After some back-and-forth, Owen hits a piledriver right before the break.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Raw #202 - March 24th, 1997

The Raw after Wrestlemania 13 opens with a long pan across the front row. Jim Ross informs us that Mankind is the number-one contender to The Undertaker’s WWF title, even though astute viewers who stayed awake during last night’s pay-per-view would know that Mankind got counted out in the tag team match. The Headbangers, who won an unannounced and terrible four-way tag team elimination match last night, get their promised title shot against Davey Boy (who has two titles) and Owen (who has two Slammys… and a title). The tag team champions after this match will face The Road Warriors at the next In Your House.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Raw #201 - March 17th, 1997


The last Raw (is War) before Wrestlemania is live from Syracuse, home to the nine thugs who aren’t responsible for Shawn Michaels forfeiting his title (this time). The Legion of Doom enters for the opening match while Vince welcomes us to “The Warzone” for “Monday Night Raw” before reminding us that “Raw is War.” That’s a lot of TV show titles to fit in a single sentence. Crush and Savio face off with the LOD, with both Faarooq and Ahmed banned from ringside. LOD starts fighting NOD outside the ring before the bell, kicking off several minutes of chaotic brawling among all four men. While the referee tries to establish order, Ahmed cuts a promo on the split screen about how in the Chicago Street Fight, we might see something we might not want to see. He doesn’t specifically mention his butt cheeks, but that’s what we’re all thinking. Faarooq responds with an inset promo of his own that he delivers in “Ebonics” so that Ahmed can understand. Through the magic of split-screen, we also see the finish to the Ahmed-Faarooq match at MSG last night, which ended when the NOD interfered to break up a pin.