Thursday, August 30, 2012

Raw #14 - April 26th, 1993

The fourteenth episode of Raw is back in the Manhattan Center. Vince welcomes us, accompanied by Randy Savage and Rob -- no, wait. That's Bobby Heenan! Tonight we will see Lex Luger vs. "The Original Hawaiian Crush," according to Vince. I think he means, "The Original Hawaiian Punch, Crush," unless Crush is at least 1200 years old and was the first settler on the islands.

Damien Demento is already in the ring, as per usual, as Mr. Perfect makes his way down the aisle. Vince McMahon explains that Rob Bartlett has quit rather than share the booth with Bobby Heenan again. If you listen to the commentary carefully over the course of the first 13 episodes, you can see how sick the other announcers were getting of Bartlett. The important thing is, he is never, ever, ever coming back. Even Sean Mooney would return for a cameo on Raw #1000. Rob Bartlett on commentary is just a misstep that Vince would rather pretend didn't exist. Art Donovan, my namesake, was like your grampa watching wrestling for the first time: very confused but very curious. Bartlett was like your smart-allecky uncle watching wrestling for the first time: only interested in cracking dated jokes and pointing out to you that it's all fake.

Back in the ring, Perfect has Demento under control until the man from the outer reaches of your mind pulls his opponent out of the ring and into the cameraman. Talk about uncooked, uncensored, and unbelievable. Demento whips Perfect to the corner "with authority" to chants of, if I am not mistaken, "LSD." Perfect takes back control with a series of chops, inspiring "woooos" from the audience. Remember that Mr. Perfect was the man who drove Ric Flair out of the Federation. Hennig gets the victory with the Perfectplex (later un-creatively renamed the "Hennigplex" in WCW).

Next, we show a winner of an essay contest, reading her essay, "There's No Hope With Dope," which describes a funeral from the perspective of the corpse in the casket. Dark stuff. At the end, the Undertaker emerges from the shadows to reiterate that there's no hope with dope. Hopefully Jasmine McNeill uses her prize money for some psychiatric counseling.


On a lighter note, Raw returns with the large Raw girls in the ring. Bobby Heenan asks, "Usually when they walk around like that, don't they hook their trunks to their tails?" Vince McMahon is disgusted. Heenan announces that one of the audience members is going to propose to his girlfriend tonight, and that The Brain's going to do all he can to make her say no.

The Narcissist Lex Luger enters the ring and, remarkably, Bobby Heenan does not need to change his pants. Vince McMahon explains that Jack Tunney's investigation into Lex Luger's forearm has revealed a steel plate, which gives him an unfair advantage over his opponents (unless they're 550-pound Japanese heels; then it's just a part of Lex's body). Crush enters the ring and Macho Man calls him "Chaka Bra." He and Lex get into one of those interminable grapples that the makers of 1990's wrestling games seemed to think were 75% of any match. Crush breaks out by pushing The Narcissist into the corner with a Maneuver (#1). He must have been jamming the A button pretty hard! Crush then engages Luger in a long test of strength, leading the big Hawaiian to press-slam the Narcissist. Both these strong men use ICO-PRO, or "integrated conditioning programs."


Luger knocks Crush out of the ring with a knee to the "rib area." Narcissist slams Crush back-first into the ring post, then brings him back into the ring for a bear hug. Crush won't quit, says Heenan, because in Hawaiian, there are only twelve letters in the alphabet (actually, 13). He escapes with a right hand but gets powerslammed to the canvas. Crush manages to suplex Luger, but may have hurt his own back on his next Maneuver (#2), a belly-to-back suplex. Crush goes for the head vice and appears to be headed for victory., but lets go at the sight of Doink in the balcony, because Crush is a moron. Doink points to another Doink on the opposite end of the arena, and Bobby Heenan still insists that they are the same person. Luger hits the forearm on Crush, knocking him out of the ring for a countout. A shower of balloons and confetti does not follow, however.

Vince mentions the King of the Ring pay-per-view for the first time. The first qualifying matches will be Doink vs. Mr. Perfect and Bob Backlund vs. Lex Luger this weekend. Mr. Hughes makes his Raw debut against Jason Knight. Hughes wrestles the whole match with his sunglasses on. Chris Jericho claims in his book Undisputed that his future lackey would wear the glasses so that, as a narcoleptic, he could fall asleep on his feet without anyone noticing. That's the same reason Macho Man wears sunglasses during Hughes matches. Bobby Heenan takes a less subtle approach and flips through the channels during the match, landing at one point on Sir Mix-A-Lot's "Baby Got Back" music video. Meanwhile, Hughes punches and kicks his way to victory, pinning Knight after a Devastating Maneuver (#3 - chokeslam).

Why would anyone watch TNT during Monday Night Raw?


Shawn Michaels comes to the ring for an interview to his self-performed theme carrying the now-white Intercontinental belt. Vince hints at a future title defense against Mr. Perfect, with whom Michaels brawled backstage at Wrestlemania IX. Vince asks Michaels about his title defense next week against Hacksaw Jim Duggan, who we haven't seen since he was crushed by Yokozuna. Michaels taunts two male fans off-screen by claiming to have seen them at some march in Washington, implying that they are homosexual. This coming from a man who would later pose for Playgirl and invite other men to "suck it." The fans revolt and chant "Shawn is gay" for over a minute. Heenan clarifies that they're chanting "Shawn is great!" I love Bobby Heenan. That is to say, I appreciate his witty commentary. Vince brings up Shawn's attack on Perfect, which included a shot with trash can, prompting Michaels to call him "Grover," the guy on Sesame Street who lives in a trash can. That's Oscar the Grouch, Shawn. Mr. Perfect, unwilling to let this misinformation about Sesame Street continue, comes down to ringside and chases Shawn out of the ring after getting kicked in the face.

The fans do the dreaded "limp wrist tomahawk chop."
Vito AKA Von Krus waits in the ring as we see footage from Superstars of Tatanka rescuing Sherri from Bam Bam Bigelow. Bigelow would retaliate by beating up the Native American backstage before his match and cutting his hair. Typhoon plods to the ring and initially dominates the future cross-dresser, but Vito turns the tables. Hacksaw gets on the phone and says he's ready for his first-ever title shot next week against HBK. Typhoon regains the advantage while no one pays attention, hitting a splash for the victory.


Bobby Heenan introduces the audience to the couple highlighted earlier. After Heenan berates the couple, the boyfriend asks his girlfriend to marry her. Actually, he tells Heenan on the microphone that he is going to ask her to marry him. Heenan finds out that neither one of them has been with anyone else before and then asks "How do you know you're even sexually compatible?" The guy laughs as he proposes, and astonishingly, she says yes. They decline to have the wedding right then and there in the arena as we go off the air.

Final tally:

1 uncut, uncensored, and uncooked (Cumulative total: 27)
3 Maneuvers (Cumulative total: 60)

1 comment:

  1. I'm digging these raw reviews a lot; I went from 74 to the present, now I've restarted from Episode 1.

    But I can't believe the other announcers didn't get in on announcing the wedding proposal. I would mark out if it was described as "a matramonial maneuver." And if only Gorilla was there, we could have gotten, "he's placing a ring on one of her manual digital protruberances!" (But at least they'd ditched Bartlet, or they would have gotten Buttafuco'd out of the building).