The opening match is Razor Ramon vs. Rick Martel, who is wrestling his third match in one night, as the past three Raws have all been filmed in New Haven on September 27th. heenan bets that if Razor wins the belt, he'll melt it down into "some cheap necklace." Who does he think Ramon is, the Supreme Fighting Machine Kama? This episode is airing on Columbus Day, the significance of which Vince explains like so:
"Well, gentlemen, let's not forget that we are celebrating Columbus Day in the United States. Columbus, by the way, not only was he representing the Queen of England when he discovered America, don't forget Columbus was Hispanic! This could be a great day for those of Hispanic extraction, a great day for Razor Ramon!"
A few points need to be made here. Firstly, the monarch of England in 1492 was not a queen, but King Henry VII. Secondly, as you all remember from first grade, Columbus was not representing England, but Spain, under King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella. That's why much of the Caribbean and most of Central and South America speak Spanish, not English. Thirdly, Columbus was not "Hispanic" or even Spanish. He was from Genoa, part of modern-day Italy. Fourthly, Scott Hall is as Caucasian as American Starship Coyote or the Diamond Studd. Other than that, Vince's historical commentary is spot-on.
The match starts off with slaps, then top wristlocks, just like in a real fight. Martel scores a Nice Maneuver (#1- drop toe hold) to take the Bad Guy down. Razor then escapes a wristlock and does what you and I would call a push to the turnbuckle, but which Vince calls a Maneuver (#2) that we should look at. A series of Irish whips occur, again just like in a real fight, until Razor's fallaway slam send the Model to the outside. Razor slaps on a wristlock and puts Martel on the ground.
The two men are fighting on the outside of the ring when the show returns from break. What would happen in the event of a double-countout? Maybe WWF could have drawn this angle out, having the match end in non-finish after non-finish for weeks on end until Shawn Michaels returned and reclaimed his title. Heenan points out that if Martel wins the IC title, then there will be no American champions in the WWF. Isn't Razor supposed to be from Cuba? After Razor escapes a Boston Crab via a rope break, the Model hits a Devastating Maneuver (#3 - side slam) on Razor, then showboats for the crowd. Martel puts on the Boston Crab again, but Razor powers out with his legs for an unsuccessful pin attempt. Ramon puts Martel on the top turnbuckle for a belly-to-back suplex, but Rick elbows out and tries a body press. Razor rolls through the body press and almost pins The Model. Razor then finishes Martel with the Razor's Edge. Razor quotes Scarface, saying into the camera, "Say hello to the new Intercontinental Champion!" (That's from the scene where Tony Montana beats Don Muraco).
Next out are the Headshrinkers, which tonight is spelled as one word. Has it always been like that? Shouldn't that at least be hyphenated? They take on Tommy Morrison and Sid Curtis, tonight's body donors. Vince wonders what would happen if the Steiner Brothers took on the 'Shrinkers. That already happened, Vince. You know, the one you called "the greatest Wrestlemania of all time," Wrestlemania IX? Vince announces a non-sanctioned match tonight featuring the Rock & Roll Express. Gee, for a non-sanctioned match, you sure are allowing them a lot of TV time on your #1 show. this match is your typical Headshrinkers squash, where the Samoans beat one scrub unconscious, then drags him over to his own corner to tag in his partner. In this case, the partner is Tommy Morrison, which Vince clarifies is not the boxer of the same name (For example, the wrestler Tommy Morrison did not star in Rocky V or get banned from boxing for testing positive for HIV). Morrison gets splashed by Fatu and pinned. Strangely, he would not return to the WWF packaged as "Tommy Gunn," long lost cousin of the Smoking Gunns.
Vince reminds the Raw audience of their new slogan, "Don't fall for cheap imitations" and plugs Survivor Series as the only Thanksgiving wrestling pay-per-view tradition, alluding to WCW's Battlebowl PPV airing November 20th, featuring eight matches between randomly-formed tag teams. Heenan calls Owen Hart "the biggest turkey you'll ever see," forgetting about the Gobbledy Gooker, who debuted just three years earlier. He does have quite a beak, though. His opponent tonight is the photogenic Scott King, widow of Martin Luther King, Jr. Owen kips up out of a wristlock by King, prompting Vince to tell us to look at that Maneuver (#4). I don't know what Vince thinks the audience is doing, but I think we all looked at that maneuver already. The announcers discuss jim Ross's interviews on Radio WWF, which have included one with Terry Funk. Does anybody out there have tapes of any of these broadcasts? Hart hits another Nice Maneuver (#5 - reverse monkey flip) which sends King flying. Vince mentions Jerry Lawler, the undisputed King of the WWF; shouldn't this jobber have to change his name, then? Heenan accuses Scott King of having changed his name just to steal some of Lawler's thunder. Owen scores a Clever Maneuver (#6) with a snap belly-to-belly suplex, then hits another Maneuver (#7), a top-rope dropkick. He finishes off King with a bridging Northern Lights suplex.
After that patriotic (or jingoistic) speech by Luger, we go to break and return with footage of a mushroom cloud. After you've just hyped up the crowd into a pro-USA fervor, is it really the best idea to showcase a nuclear bomb exploding? Especially when the anti-American villain calls the country a polluted hellhole? Vince announces the Savage-Crush summit next week as Adam Bomb, Crush's future Kronik tag team partner enters. Accompanying Mr. Clark is Harvey Wippleman, replacing Johnny Polo as his manager. Say what you will about the Johnny Polo character; at least he has the good sense to leave a sinking ship now that he's managing champions. Guess how many champions Harvey Wippleman ever managed in the WWF? Bertha Faye (so, technically, one). Wippleman's answer to Polo's Quebecers is the team of Well Dunn, a team that wore thongs over their tights. If Wippleman could just hold onto his existing contracts a little longer, he could amass the greatest stable of wrestlers ever seen, consisting of Giant Gonzalez, Mr. Hughes, Timothy Well, Steven Dunn, and Adam Bomb. Tonight, his opponent (Bomb's, not Wippleman's) is Raw standby Ross Greenberg. Bomb beats the WWF's #2 Jewish jobber in a squash match that features one Nice Maneuver (#8 - dropkick), one Look-at-this Maneuver (#9 - slingshot clothesline), and one Atom Smasher. Savage then insists that he and Crush will settle their differences verbally next week at the Savage-Crush Summit (or the Crush-Savage Summit, as Heenan calls it).
|Pictured (left to right): Rock, Roll.|
We return from break so that Vince can replay tonight's opening match, while also re-writing Ramon's past to better reflect Scott Hall's actual biography; now, instead of having been born in Cuba, Ramon grew up in Miami (which is much closer to Hall's native Chuluota, Florida than Cuba is). Tatanka, the Native American with the undefeated streak (double-countouts don't count) is in action next week, as well as IRS and the Steiner Brothers. All those squash matches, plus the Savage-Crush Summit, will be on next week's Raw.
10 Maneuvers (Cumulative total: 223)