Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Raw #82 - October 17th, 1994

Raw opens up with a series of outdoor clips from Burlington, Vermont, which hosts tonight's live episode. A confused Macho Man (at his last ever WWF taping) says, "This isn't The Learning Channel!" and he's right. The main difference between Monday Night Raw and TLC is that for the past decade or so, Raw has had provided more culturally enriching programming than the cable network known for fashion, decorating, and Honey Boo Boo. Speaking of cultural enrichment, Doink comes to the ring with Dink and the newest addition to his entourage, Wink. They josh around with the Spanish announce team before the Raw intro, over which a Stridex logo is plastered as Todd Pettengill hocks the acne treatment. This is the most disgraceful act of commercialism since Pepsi bought South Korea.
Double J struts to the ring as Vince announces the impending release of the country singer's debut album, "Ain't I Great?" Jarrett spells his name for the audience, accompanied by flashing lights for the benefit of those with epilepsy. Doink takes it to the crooner with a number of moves nicely done, down to the canvas. After a bite from Dink, Jarrett is said to have a problem with "the right buttocks." That's "buttock," McMahon, singular. Jarrett responds with a drop toe hold (nicely done) on Doink, but gets caught in another headlock. Jarrett then catches Doink in an abdominal stretch, using the ropes for leverage instead of properly applying the hold as Gorilla Monsoon would prefer. Vince recounts the events of the past week in which Jerry Lawler introduced his own midget sidekick, King Queasy, only for Doink to bring in the yellow-wigged midget Wink to "outsmart" The King. Only in wrestling could the enlistment of a midget clown qualify as "outsmarting." Eventually, Dink bites Jarrett's hand to break up his illegal use of the ropes. Just then. not one but two midget kings come to ringside, allowing Jeff to knock the clown to the outside where he is victimized by the dwarves. 1994 WWF, ladies and gentlemen.
Double J takes advantage of the interference of the royal little people throughout the break and scores a near-fall after Raw returns to air. Jarrett works over the clown with a chinlock, sleeper hold, and headlock, then executes a Maneuver (#1 - enziguiri kick) when his foot is caught by the clown. Jarrett scores a near-fall that is "closer than close" according to Savage, foreshadowing Jeff's sophomore album, Greater than Great. Doink gets back into the match with a double-underhook suplex. He fails to capitalize, however, allowing Jarrett to go to the second rope. A High-Risk Maneuver (#2 - fist drop) backfires when Doink moves out of the way, but Double J is quick to get back on his feet. Doink executes a powerslam, however, then whips Jarrett into the midget king on the apron, knocking the little monarch to the floor. A suplex by Doink only gets the clown a near-fall, as does a follow-up dropkick. Meanwhile, all four midgets run around the ring, distracting the ref when Doink lands the whoopee cushion and pins Jarrett. Lawler runs in, nails Doink, then puts Jeff on top for the three count.
The British Bulldogs enters once again to pyrotechnics, and Vince once again calls it "the rockets' red glare," which comes from the American national anthem. While the rockets described came from the British navy, their bombardment of Fort McHenry failed and contributed to their loss of the War of 1812. That's exactly the kind of implications Vince ought to bring up as the Bulldog faces a jobber: the great British navy failing against an overmatched United States. That does give Roy Raymond a fighting chance tonight. Davey Boy puts Raymond into a delayed vertical suplex. The Bulldog then poses prematurely in the corner, letting Shawn Michaels sneak back into the ring and eliminate him from the Royal Rumble. Oops, I'm getting a few months ahead of myself. Instead, Smith puts Rayomnd in a snapmare, headlock, double underhook suplex, another headlock, and a superplex from the very top rope. An Irish whip and clothesline goes awry when Raymond fails to fall, while Davey Boy stumbles to the ground and Vince passes the move off as a "boot to the midsection." Bulldog then puts the zebra-striped wrestler in another vertical suplex, which he kicks out of for some reason. Davey puts him away with a running powerslam.

We revisit Superstars from this past weekend, when former Backlund manager and Hall of Famer Arnold Skaaland was interviewed by Vince. However, first we get a short plug by Burt Reynolds for his new autobiography, creatively entitled, My Life. Bob Backlund then comes to ringside, where he is interviewed by McMahon and says that the audience doesn't need to see the footage again. We see the Superstars footage anyway, where Bob put the chickenwing on the man who threw the towel in and cost him his title in 1983. Vince wants Backlund to apologize, and Bob agrees. He apologized to himself, the fans, and Jack Tunney for "ever ascertaining Arnold Skaaland as my manager." Bob then goes off on a rant about the plebeians while we get an extreme close-up of his face. "I did more to try to boon your life than any athlete in the world!" "I never have ever eaten marijuana!" He then challenges anyone in the audience to escape from the crossface, but instead it's Lex Luger who comes to ringside, perhaps to get a look at someone who has actually held a WWF title. He dares Backlund to try to put the chickenwing on a wrestler, not a magazine writer or manager. Bob dashes into the ring and does deep knee lunges. A parade of officials keep Luger from entering the ring.
Bob "Spark Plugg" Holly. who will face Bob Backlund on this weekend's Superstars, faces Reno Riggins. Randy then asks Vince about "eating marijuana," speculating that Backlund chewed it, but didn't swallow, meaning he can still be president. Bob Backlund for President? Did WWF's creative team ever credit Macho Man for that? After a rapid series of counters, Holly hits a belly-to-back suplex. Riggins whips Holly hard into the corner once, but after his second attempt, Spark Plugg counters Reno's charge with a Maneuver (#3 - elbow). The jobber (Riggins, that is) catches Holly on the top rope and attempts a superplex, the Maneuver (#4) that the Bulldog did earlier tonight. Sparky pushes Reno off the ropes and executes a flying body press for the three-count.

Todd Pettengill informs us of an Intercontinental title match between champion Razor Ramon and Yokozuna. Spoiler: Yokozuna would never end up holding the Intercontinental championship. Neither would The Undertaker, but were Yoko to win the title, at least one of their dozens of casket matches would likely be for the title.
Ted DiBiase leads IRS (who was not at the last taping) to the ring, where he says that the only two sure things in life are death and taxes, and that he will soon expose The Undertaker as the biggest tax cheat in the WWF. If that's true, it could be Paul Bearer's fault for not giving Taker his W-2 forms for his part-time work at the funeral parlor. If only IRS had taken my advice and teamed up with DiBiase's version of The Undertaker, creating the unbeatable duo of Death & Taxes. At least IRS has theme music again, although it's the Million Dollar Rap and not IRS's classic typewriter sound effects. He faces Tim McNeany. Schyster hits a "nicely done" hip toss on his opponent. McNeany almost picks up a win over Irwin with a schoolboy, but IRS kicks out. Good thing for McNeany, too. The last jobber who beat the tax man would end up wrestling with a jock strap on his head. Schyster gets back to business with a Maneuver (#5 - STF) for the submission victory. That was "The Penalty," Irwin's even-less-memorable finishing move, behind the "Write-Off."
Vince takes us back to Superstars, where the lights went out on Yokozuna and the Undertaker's bells started tolling. "Did you hear that?" asked Vince. "Yes, the bong!" Bob Backlund would be livid if heard that, McMahon. Paul Bearer wheeled down the jumbo casket to ringside, which caused the fat man (Yokozuna) to stumble in fear at the sight of it.
Jim Cornette is in the ring, taking the microphone from Howard Finkel to introduce the Heavenly Bodies, "the team that have won more wrestling matches than Elvis and the Beatles combined!" Even Vince has a chuckle at that. The Heavenly Bodies are sporting new robes with the wings printed, rather than sewn, on the back. Their opponents are Nick Barbarry and Barry Horowitz, or Barbarry Horowitz, as they would be known were the team to stick together. Prichard and Horowitz exchange counter after counter, each one a hip toss, before getting stopped by the ropes. Barry slaps the Doctor of Desire and rolls him up for a two count. Both men tag out, though Nick Barbarry tags back out to Horowitz for some double-teaming. The jobber team makes quick tags until Del Rey catches Barbarry with a Maneuver (#6), a floatover DDT that the Rock would call, "Layin' the Smack Down." Prichard then executes a sit-down powerbomb onto Barbarry before Del Rey gets the win with a moonsault.
Lex Luger speaks backstage, challenging "Bobby Backlund" to face a New Generation WWF wrestler (himself).
Next week, Todd Pettengill will have a "very special announcement" (hopefully involving cinderblocks, rope, and a bridge). Diesel will be in action, plus the IC title match between Razor and Yokozuna. We also get one last reminder about the premiere of the Action Zone on USA. The graphic for the main event misspells "premiere," unless the WWF is going to have "premiers" this Sunday and is inviting various heads of state to watch the Harts wrestle.

Final tally:

6 Maneuvers (Year total: 121)

1 comment:

  1. "Bob dashes into the ring and does deep knee lunges."

    This is my favorite animated GIF in a long time. I assume Mr. Backlund sort of tripped on his bathrobe, but it's still amazing.