Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Raw #141 - January 1st, 1996

It’s the Raw Bowl! The WWF’s first four-way match also happens to feature terrible commentary and unnecessary football elements. The challenge is to cover both the action and the countless puns spewed out by the announcers. Also, the very first “Billionaire Ted” skit airs tonight, while a pep band plays “You Can Call Me Al.”
“Vin” McMahon and Jerry “Musburgerking” call the action as the Smoking Gunns arrive with the numbers “38” and “45.” “It’s all about the National Championship,” says McMahon, making it really ambiguous whether the tag team titles are on the line. Goldust’s usher gives Razor flowers, then falls victim to “unnecessary roughness.” Goldust is in the “end zone,” which I hope is just a football reference, as is the fact that Vince hopes he stays “out of scoring position.”

Since there’s no way I can possibly fit all the football references into my commentary, here’s a fairly comprehensive list of them:
  • kickoff
  • first-round draft picks
  • game plans
  • national championship
  • Heisman trophy winners
  • tackling dummy
  • Big Eight
  • perennial all-pro
  • free agent
  • walk-on
  • personal foul
  • unnecessary roughness
  • end zone
  • illegal forward pass
  • incomplete pass
  • playbook
  • out of bounds
  • out of scoring position
  • goal-line defense
  • Million Dollar Booster Club
  • recruiting violations
  • way offsides
  • quarterback sneak
  • They could go all the way!
  • point spread
  • coin toss
  • Earl Hebner, the head linesman
  • fair catch
  • penalty
  • Academic All-American
  • mid-field
  • delay of game
  • quarterback slide
  • What a sack!
  • intentional grounding
  • piling on
  • quick pin
  • the drive
  • home-field advantage
  • encroachment
  • press box
  • illegal motion
  • an opportunity to score
  • interference
  • field goal
  • illegal procedure backfield in motion
  • tackle
  • lateraling off
  • Penn State, excuse me, State Pen
  • coed
  • matriculating
  • backfield in motion
  • blitz
  • calling of audibles
  • Statue of Liberty play
  • chinstrap
  • spear
  • time left on the clock
  • blocked that kick
  • roughing the kicker
  • line of scrimmage
  • official time-out
  • onside kick
  • the whole left side of the line
  • on the field
  • Brother Love, Minister of Offense
  • Check out the hang time on that punt!
  • Out of field goal range
  • attempt a bomb
  • Sid is from the WAC - he’s wacko!
  • turnover
  • red zone
  • hoping that the clock doesn’t run out
  • first down
  • third and long
  • too many men on the field
  • When is play going to resume?
  • illegal procedure
  • touchdown
  • the old draw play
  • fumbling
  • trap play
  • kickoff
  • bowl alliance
  • 100-1 longshots
  • (Steve) Lombardi trophy
  • Astroturf
  • from the top of the goal post
  • hits the upright
  • offensive coordinator
  • getting the debris off the field
  • Hail Mary
  • double reverse
  • instant replay
  • sidelines
  • excessive noise
  • They can’t hear each other’s signals!
  • 50-yarder
  • two-minute drill
  • punting
  • trick play
  • gadget play
  • scoreboard ready to light up
  • illegal use of the hands
  • intentional grounding
  • triple threat
  • wide open
  • illegal man downfield
  • the next big game
  • Bret Hart’s championship offense, like the Nebraska Cornhuskers
  • Undertaker’s quick-striking offense, like the Florida Gators
  • 30 All-Pro superstars competing
  • ejected from the Royal Rumble
  • the Super Bowl of the World Wrestling Federation, Wrestlemania 12
  • second half

Still here? Vince explains the rules to this first-ever four-way elimination match, a match type that would also take place at Summerslam this year, except without the time outs and it will really, really suck. Owen puts one over on the Smoking Gunns by tagging in Billy to take on his own partner, Bart. This leads Jerry Lawler to call Hart an Academic All-American, despite being from Canada. The two Gunns grapple briefly, with Billy landing on his feet to counter a hiptoss for the night’s first Maneuver. Before they can do any damage to each other, the two cowboys tag in Owen and Yoko, much to Lawler’s chagrin. He wonders aloud who’s in charge of the NCAACP, an organization that doesn’t exist, but which would have something to do with college sports and black people, I suppose. Still, it’s better than Vince wanting to get in touch with the “NAACP” for “recruiting violations” by Ted DiBiase, which I think is referring to his hiring of Virgil, or perhaps Kama. Owen quickly tags in Savio Vega while Lawler gets excited about the “Raw Bowl Queen” sitting next to him at the announce table. The Kid tags in but eventually falls prey to a Savio Vega spinning heel kick after his own heel kick misses. Owen Hart then tags in to deliver another spinning heel kick. After lots of tags in and out, Yokozuna ends up in teh ring with Savio Vega and works him over during the commercial break.

After the commercial, Vince shows a replay of an Owen Hart enziguiri to Savio Vega, a move which, claims Hart, is responsible for Shawn Michaels’s post-concussive syndrome. And no, that’s not a football reference. He then attempts a sharpshooter, but Vega kicks Hart away for a Nice Maneuver (#2). After Brother Love is shown backstage delivering an invocation with his eyes closed, oblivious to the fact that all the wrestlers left the locker room twenty minutes ago, the 123 Kid attempts a very high version of the bronco buster but misses, getting hung up on the top turnbuckle. Razor Ramon gets the hot tag and gets revenge on the Kid until he calls time out. Razor ignores the ref’s instructions and gives the Kid a Razor’s Edge. The ref won’t count Ramon’s pin, then gets distracted and throws a flag on Ted DiBiase. Meanwhile, Sid hits Ramon from behind, allowing Kid to get the pin and eliminate Razor and Savio.
After the commercial break, the King uses his “magistrator” to draw all over the screen and explain the “draw play” we just saw. Jerry Lawler talks about Hart and Yokozuna wanting to win the “Lombardi trophy,” although whether the tag team titles themselves are on the line is still left very vague. Bart Gunn scores a Maneuver (#3 - school boy) on Owen Hart, earning a near-fall. BIlly Gunn gets a hot tag and unloads on all the heels until future D-X teammate the Kid kicks him in the back. Yoko then sets up Billy for the Banzai drop, while Owen Hart stands behind him for some reason. Bart pulls Billy out of the way, tripping up Owen, who then takes a Banzai drop to the back. Billy pins Owen to eliminate his team. Sid and the Kid then work over Billy, cutting him off from Bart. Billy nearly wins the match with a small package on Sid, but the big man, who’s more adept at softball than football, kicks out. Sid holds Billy so that the Kid can launch onto him off the top rope; Bart inadvertently distracts the referee, but Razor Ramon rushes to ringside (or the “sidelines”) to push the Kid onto Sid. Billy pins Sid for the victory, leaving the Kid with an hilarious sour look on his face, as if he had just seen his own sex tape with Joanie Laurer.

Dok Hendrix delivers a “half-time report,” which is sponsored by Wrigley chewing gum, because this episode really blows a big one. “Jumbo” Jim Ross tells us that, in Diesel’s own words, he was going to “kick the king’s can” in his match with Mabel tonight. “Dandy” Dok Hendrix then explains the Royal Rumble in football terms before throwing it back to Jerry and Vince, who is excited about the bombshell announcement about one of the Rumble entrants. We then see a replay of the Hog Pen Match which aired on pay-per-view just two weeks earlier.
A caravan of jobbers (including Jeff Hardy) carries King Mabel to the ring. Diesel moseys to the ring, then attacks Mabel before the bell. After a some knees and a big boot, Big Daddy Cool pins Mabel in the King’s last singles match in the Federation for two years. Diesel then approaches the announcers’ table and steals the Raw Bowl Queen away from Jerry Lawler.
Backstage, the Brooklyn Brawler presents the Smoking Gunns with the Lombardi trophy. Steve Lombardi, that is! The Gunns throw the plastic trophy with the Brawler’s face taped to it onto the floor. The wrestlers in the babyface locker room then dump Lipton Brisk onto the Brawler.
Finally, we find out the first entrants into the Royal Rumble, including Bam Bam Bigelow (who already wrestled his last match with the Federation at Survivor Series and won’t be at the Rumble), Dory Funk, Jr. (whose brother, Terry, was also invited), a returning Tatanka, and Vader!

Final tally:

3 Maneuvers

No comments:

Post a Comment