Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Raw #157 - April 29th, 1996

Tonight’s Raw is all about SEX! Whom did Shawn Michaels proposition last night? Sable? Marlena? Sunny (once again)? Nope, try Diana Smith! Shawn certainly did. Mankind has his third match on Raw, this time against Bart Gunn, who is in the midst of the Smoking Gunns Awareness campaign to remind everyone that they still exist despite brother Billy’s horseback injury.

Vince makes a point of calling Mankind, “deranged,” even saying, and I quote, “Right hand by Deranged.” He then corrected himself, although Deranged would still make a better name than Eric Eargone. Mankind charges at Bart in the corner, but the cowboy dodges and lets Mankind hit the ring post. Bart works over the arm of Deranged, excuse me, Mankind, who has a cut under his right eye. Jerry Lawler uses the same joke about the ugly contest that he used four weeks ago, while Vince calls him, “a most unique individual,” to quote Johnny Polo quoting Vince McMahon. Mankind baseball slides Bart off the apron just before the break.
Vince promotes the return of the Smoking Gunns to tag team action while Mankind pummels Bart with his fists like Butterbean. Bart retaliates with punching of his own, then mounts the top rope for a High-Risk Maneuver (#1 - dropkick) and a two-count. A flying elbow drop likewise fails to secure a three count. Bart then tackles Mankind and punches him, a move that the WWF Attitude video game called, “tackle with punches.” Mankind counters with the mandible claw for the victory and appears to orgasm, judging by the expression on his face.

At this point, the UK broadcast of Raw simply replays the 123 Kid-Marc Mero match from last night’s Free-For-All, I imagine because UK viewers don’t get the Prevue channel and couldn’t see it when it first aired. Nothing of note happens, except that after Hunter Hearst Helmsley interferes against Mero (drawing a DQ), he walks to the back with the Kid and flashes the Clique sign.
Savio Vega comes to ringside for commentary, to the cheers of the one fan wearing a Savio t-shirt. Savio’s vest bears both the American and Mexican flags, despite Savio being from Puerto Rico, not Mexico; maybe Lawler wasn’t that far off the mark when he called him, “burrito breath.” Savio challenges Steve Austin to a Caribbean strap match, which is totally different from an Indian strap match, I’m sure. King calls Savio “burrito breath” again and says that the only reason the Caribbean strap match exists is to prevent the cowardly Puerto Ricans from running away. In the meantime, Steve Austin puts Scott Taylor (whom Vince erroneously calls, “Scott D’Amore”) away with the Million Dollar Dream. Savio gets on the mic and challenges Austin to the strap match, but DiBiase declines, so Vega whips Steve Austin with the strap from behind.

Jim Cornette and the Smiths (sans Morrissey) are in the ring to level their accusations against Shawn Michaels. Jim Cornette shows footage from last night’s pay-per-view where, if you squint, you can just make out a production assistant giving Diana Smith word to go backstage during her husband’s match, ostensibly to see Cornette. Then, says Cornette, Shawn propositioned Bulldog’s wife. “Yeah!” says Lawler, who of all people should know that not every accusation of sexual impropriety is true. Michaels, who has a manager named “Lothario,” of course denies wrongdoing. When Diana gets on the mic and tells HBK that she knows he wants her, Shawn, enunciating very clearly, tells her not to “flatter yourself.” Diana then slaps Michaels, who says that he now knows “who wears the pants in the Smith family.” Davey Boy, who is wearing a Speedo, brawls with Shawn as Diana looks on in her pants suit.
Next, in a number-one contenders’ match for the tag team titles, The Godwinns take on the New Rockers, consisting of Marty Jannetty and Leif Cassidy, whom Vince calls, “sort of dorky.” The Rockers flee the ring at the outset of the match due to the bucket of slop in the middle of the ring… and the container of pig feed he’s holding. Sunny speaks from backstage and says she’ll need a closer look at the action. Jerry Lawler praises Sunny’s “beautiful belts,” not-so-subtly referring to her breasts. The New Rockers double-team Phineas until the hog farmer goes berserk, flailing at everything like a fighting game character who has just initiated a combo but whose opponent has already moved out of the way. Jerry Lawler says that if Phineas married a horse, he’d sire a mule, implying that he’s an ass, and not that he actually copulates with farm animals (which he would later admit to as Midian). Leif, who has exited the ring, pretends that he’s eager to get back in, yelling, “Hold me back, Marty!” The Rockers stay outside of the ring until Henry calms Phineas down. Shortly thereafter, Sunny comes to ringside with the tag belts as Raw goes to commercial.
Sunny tells the camera, “not a bad pair, huh? I mean the belts, you know.” This is because Sunny has two belts and two breasts. Got it? As a “Sunny” chant erupts among the Sioux City crowd, Phineas is distracted by the Bodydonna’s teats. The New Rockers seem to have the match well in hand as Vince notes their “dorkish” attitude until Phineas gets the hot tag. Leif Cassidy executes a lateral press on the big hog farmer, sending them both over the top rope. Hillbilly Jim chases Sunny off, but both teams get counted out in the meantime. That means neither team gets a title shot, because the triple-threat match has not become standard.
Jim Ross interviews Mankind in a dark room backstage. “Stick it in his mouth,” urges Lawler, referring (I hope) to his mandible claw. Mankind calls Undertaker a “gutless ghoul” and says he is bored with Taker’s weakness.
Isaac Yankem comes to the ring for his last televised match as the dentist before becoming the new Diesel (coincidentally, one night after Diesel’s last televised WWF match). The Warrior rushes to ringside, circles the ring, runs backstage, and comes back. “Here he comes. There he goes…. Here he comes again!” says McMahon. Warrior is not wearing (or swinging) the Intercontinental belt, as he and Goldust had a non-match last night at In Your House that ended in a countout. Lawler stands up to be in Yankem’s corner while keeping on his headset, while Warrior trounces Yankem.
During the commercial break, Yankem has supposedly gotten in some offense, but it’s all Warrior after the break, with the Mr. Destrucity winning with a shoulder block and splash. Lawler wants to get into the ring, but his headphone cable is too short.

Final tally:

1 Maneuver (Year total: 66)
2 “dorks” (Year total: 5)

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