By Haydn Gleed
WWE Raw on the USA Network
Poughkeepsie, New York at the Mid-Hudson Civic Center
Raw opened backstage with "The Million Dollar Man" Ted DiBiase giving money to The Beverley Brothers. He exclaimed this was just as he promised. Ted said, tell them all about the Steiner Brothers. The Beverley's told Money Inc. that they are quick, and they have to be careful of the suplexes but they are beatable. As The Beverleys were talking, Money Inc. were looking more and more nervous... The Raw opening credits aired...
Retro Verdict: I loved this! An unusual start of the show, but both teams put over The Steiner Brothers in a big way and made it feel more sports like. Dare I even say it made it feel real. Ted DiBiase's facials were fantastic through all of this.
We got our first look at the Mid-Hudson Civic Center in Poughkeepsie as the Raw sirens were blaring. Vince welcomed us to Monday Night Raw which was live. Vince was at ringside with "Macho Man" Randy Savage and (sigh) Rob Bartlett as they discussed what we had just seen backstage. Vince promoted a live interview with Luna Vachon by Rob Bartlett, who is going to get to the bottom of what happened at WrestleMania. Vince also promoted that we would see Papa Shango, Tatanka, and Friar Ferguson.
Retro Verdict: How I hope Luna does what she did to Sable in catering to Bartlett.
The Money Inc. music blared, and a confident looking Ted DiBiase and IRS made their way down to the ring. IRS did his usual spiel about paying your taxes. The Steiner Brothers made their entrance to a good response. The match is going to be Scott Steiner against IRS with their tag partners in their corners.
1. IRS (w/Million Dollar Man) vs. Scott Steiner (w/Rick Steiner). As both men circled each other, the crowd had already started with their Irrrrrrwwwwwiiiiiiinnnnn chants. Scott kept powering IRS to the ropes. On one of the releases, Irwin tried to kick Steiner, who caught his leg, but Irwin hit a kick to the head. With the advantage, Irwin was laying in punches and kicks.
Scott reversed a shot into the ropes and hit a power slam. DiBiase got on the apron to distract Scott, which allowed Irwin to head to the outside to regroup. Both men got back into the ring, Scott put on a headlock, shot into the ropes, a couple of charges and IRS is down. Scotty rammed Irwin's head into the turnbuckle and hit a big clothesline. He had him on the ground in an armbar and was wearing down the tax man.
Irwin got to his feet and caught Scott in the mid area. He gained control and tried to hit a suplex but this was blocked by Scott who hit a suplex of his own. IRS bailed to the outside to regroup with The Million Dollar Man. Irwin got the advantage with a thumb in the eye and threw the Steiner to the outside and then distracted the ref. This allowed Ted to hit a big clothesline on Scott. This brought Rick over to protect his brother and both men squared up to each other.
Back from the break, IRS was still in full control. He hit a piledriver which was clearly not executed properly that Vince covered by saying Irwin did not get all of the impact on that move. IRS put on a number of moves designed to wear down Scott. Scott managed to get to his feet and they exchanged blows, until Irwin hit a rake to the eye and knocked Scotty back down. IRS went to the top ropes, but eat a boot to the face when he came down. Scott took full advantage and pounded on IRS in the corner.
Scott grabbed Irwin's tie and pulled him down over the top rope, cool move. Scott hit a double hook suplex and covered him. The Million Dollar man came into the ring to break up the pin and caused a DQ. The Steiners had the Million Dollar man ready for a double team move, when the Beverley Brothers hit the ring and beat on The Steiners.
Both The Beverley's and Million Dollar Man were putting the boots into Scott Steiner. Ted held him up, and The Beverley's went for a double clothesline, Scott ducked and they hit The Million Dollar Man for a huge pop. Scott rolled out of the ring and Howard Finkel confirmed that Scott Steiner won this match by a DQ. After The Steiner's left, Money Inc. and The Beverley Brothers squared off. IRS bailed to the outside, and Ted DiBiase did the same. I didn't see that one coming....
Scott Steiner beat IRS via DQ in 12.30.
Retro Verdict: Good match. Both men worked hard. There was one scary moment in the match when Scott Steiner hit a double hook suplex and Irwin nearly landed on his head, but I enjoyed the growing tension between the two teams, and the double clothesline on DiBiase was a great crowd pleasing moment.
After a commercial for WrestleMania 9 (apparently if you saw it once, you should see it again), Tatanka made his entrance. His opponent was already in the ring, Von Krus. Von Krus would later be best known for his role as Big Vito in WWE in the mid to late 2000's. His main gimmick was other wrestlers accused him of cross-dressing...
2. Tatanka vs Von Krus. The bell rang, and Von Krus mocked Tatanka's entrance and spat at his feet. Early on, Von Krus had the advantage and pounded on the back of Tatanka, but the advantage didn't last for long, as Tatanka caught Von Krus with a number of arm-drags before backing him into the corner. He gave Von Krus a trademark chop.
We saw a shot of Doink coming down the aisle with a water pistol and distracting Tatanka. Von Krus hit a couple of chops in the corner and carried on mocking Tatanka's gimmick. Tatanka had enough and reversed positions and hit the future Big Vito with a number of load chops in the corner.
Tatanka whipped Von Krus across the ring hard and Krus literally bounced halfway across the ring from the force after hitting the turnbuckle. The commentators were joking that Bartlett is going to have his butt handed to him by Luna. They also discussed the fact that The Beverley Brothers have demanded a match against Money Inc.
Back inside the ring, both men were pounding on each other. Tatanka got the advantage with a back body drop then went on the war path. Krus pounded on him but Tatanka was no selling. Tatanka hit the End Of Trail for the 1-2-3.
Tatanka beat Von Krus via pinfall in 4:00.
Retro Verdict: Another good outing from Tatanka. Watching these matches made me realise why I really enjoyed his character. It unfortunately didn't progress really much further than were it was at this point, but it was still a very entertaining character. I've learnt to zone out the commentators now, so if I miss something important they say, please accept my apology. I will try to make sure I don't miss anything newsworthy while Bartlett is still there.
Sean Mooney was in the studio, promoting the encore presentation of WrestleMania 9. Their main hook was that never before in the history of WWF had the Championship changed hands twice in one night. Not sure that was the best thing to do....
We returned from the break, and it was time for the one, the only (thank god) Rob Bartlett. Bartlett introduced Luna Vachon. Luna made her way down the aisle without any music. Vince commentated that Luna is a one of a kind. Rob Bartlett tried to introduce himself but Luna grabbed the mike. Luna cut a promo that was very Ultimate Warrior like, in the sense that I didn't really understand what she was trying to say. She mentioned being the true woman of the '90s, but I did not catch what else she said.
The crowd chanted Sherri, and Luna went crazy. She told Bartlett to get out of her face. Luna said the only thing strong about Sensational Sherri is her breath, and that she would destroy her. Bartlett said you can't say that about Sherri and started pushing Bartlett. Bartlett introduced Sherri who came down the aisle.
She said to Bartlett that she thought he had more class than to bring a half bread women to Monday Night Raw. Luna said, "Face it, I am a bandit from the wild untamed future. A place once before and will be again. I am the ultimate female in the ring, I am the women who rules the squared circle, and I will wipe you all over the mat like a fine Picasso".
Sherri asked if Luna wants a piece of her and kicked her around Bartlett before suplexing her on the ringside mats. It soon developed into a cat fight, which Bartlett tried to stop. Luna randomly tried to rip Sherri's clothes off but failed. Luna tried to escape through the crowd, but they carried on brawling. This brought out Sgt Slaughter to carry Luna to the back.
Retro Verdict: Call me crazy, but I actually enjoyed that segment. Bartlett's involvement was minimal so he was bearable, Luna's crazy ass promo's were entertaining, and the cat fight, was a real cat fight, not like we see with the Diva's these days.
Back from the break, and Macho Man has given Sensational Sherri his hat to cover her chest area. As Macho Man was talking about how amazing Sherri is, Luna came running down the aisle, and attacked her again from behind. Eventually the agents came down and grabbed Luna again. As Sherri was making her exit, Papa Shango made his enterance. His opponent was the future Scotty 2 Hotty, Scott Taylor. Papa brought his smoking skull to ringside...
3. Papa Shango vs Scott Taylor. Papa Shango was on the offensive right from the moment the bell rang. Scott got a few shot in and a dropkick, but they didn't even knock Papa off his feet. For the majority of the match, Papa threw Scott around like a rag doll, which looked very impressive. Halfway through the match Bartlett came down with a black eye and passed out at ringside. Macho Man did what I would have done, and slapped him across the face. The ending of the match came when Papa hit the Shoulder Breaker for the easy victory.
Papa Shango beat Scott Taylor via pinfall in 2:30.
Retro Verdict: Nothing much to see here. Bartlett's a douche.
We came back from the break, and the last match was already in progress between Friar Ferguson and Chris Duffy...
Retro Verdict: You may remember Friar Ferguson as his past incarnation of Bastion Booger, a gimmick which truly deserves it's place in WrestleCrap history. Both characters were played by Mike Shaw, who also worked as Makhan Singh in Calgary, and Norman the Lunatic and Trucker Norm in WCW.
4. Friar Ferguson vs Chris Duffy. Duffy pushed Friar, but Friar didn't budge. He pushed him back and Duffy went flying. Duffy came back with a shot and tried to piledrive Ferguson, but Vince reminded us that he is over 300 pounds and Friar simply swatted Duffy away. Duffy went flying over the top rope after Friar used a leverage move. Whip into the corner and a few clotheslines and Duffy was down. Ferguson chooses this moment to do a silly little dance mid ring.
Friar scooped him up for a powerslam and hit a big splash. The ref counted to 2, but Friar lifted Duffy and whipped him into the corner and then squashed him in the corner. Friar beat on Duffy for another minute and then put his monk's outfit over the face of Chris, as you do. Friar put a nerve hold on Duffy which he sold well, even though it looked as painful as a shot in the face with a pillow. I'm sure at this point, I could hear the crowd chanting boring, but it could be something else they were saying. The finish came when Duffy tried to roll up Friar who sat on him and covered his shoulders for the 1-2-3...
Friar Ferguson beat Chris Duffy in 3.29.
Retro Verdict: What in the blue hell was that?! I was trying to rack my brain trying to remember the Friar Ferguson character, I've got a feeling I saw it and my brain hid it away in a box that says do not ever open. It was horrible to say the least! If the crowd were chanting boring, I agree with them.
Back from the final break, Money Inc. were in the back ready for an interview. Vince said that The Beverley Brothers had challenged them to a match next week, would they accept. Ted DiBiase was in the middle of saying of course they accept, when the Beverley burst through the door and attacked them to end the show.
Retro Verdict: Hot ending. I really enjoyed that and set up the match between the two teams the week after. I was quite into this episode of Raw up until the Papa Shango match which was ok but nothing of any real interest. What really dragged this show down was the Friar Ferguson match. I'm sorry but this was god awful, even for early '90s WWF. I found it tasteless. Vince made a joke about how because he was a monk, his manager must be God. The spots where he put his robe over the guys face, the whole thing was just wrong on so many levels. Friar was the worst thing on a show that had Rob Bartlett on it, which really says it all.
Vince announced that next week they would have Bret Hart and Razor Ramon on the show along with the Money Inc. vs Beverley Brothers match that they setup at the beginning and end of the show. I'm looking forward to recapping that, and I hope you read along next week...
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