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The SmarK Rant for Monday Night RAW–08.14.95

The SmarK Rant for Monday Night RAW – 08.14.95

So we’re BACK, as three new episodes have finally been added and I’ve wrapped up Nitro for 1995, and now it’s back to RAW again for a while. Ad roulette day 2: Just a WWE logo again. Double or nothing tomorrow!

God, after watching the refreshingly raw (OH THE IRONY!) and messy production of Nitro for a few weeks, switching back to the antiseptic and overly glossed WWF product is pretty jarring. Thankfully November would bring a bit of a kick in the ass to Vince’s dated production values thanks to a concussion angle, but that’s a long ways away yet. For the moment, Gorilla Monsoon is the new WWF President and we’re building to Summerslam 95.

Live from Worcester, MA. Nice looking smaller arena, actually.

Your hosts are Vince McMahon & Ted Dibiase

Doink the Clown v. Waylon Mercy

Of all people you’d think Doink would be the one not to fall for a fake handshake, and indeed he takes Mercy down with armdrags. Mercy bails and lures Doink into a charge that goes badly, but Doink stomps away on him back in the ring. Mercy with a lariat and he finishes with the CRAZY EYED SLEEPER at 3:03, complete with “Kill the Clown” chant from the smarky crowd and giant face pop. ½* Yeah, it was 1995, everyone thought they were ECW for some reason.

Meanwhile, somewhere in Hollywood, Goldust cuts his introductory promo. And it’s LONG. He really took a few months to fully nail down the character. Meltzer pretty much called this one a career-killer in the Observer for the week.

Meanwhile, Henry Godwinn comes out against the format sheet and slops Ted Dibiase, thus ending his brief association with the Corporation. So this gives us Dok Hendrix on commentary for the rest of the episode.

The Smoking Gunns v. Bill Garrett & Cody Wade

Garrett has some sort of train-related graphics airbrushed onto his ample tights, but before I can even question the reasoning behind one jobber having “Engine” and the other “Caboose” on their gear, the Gunns finish the skinny one with the Sidewinder at 1:30. Would you REALLY want to be the guy who is the Caboose?

Meanwhile, Dean Douglas critiques Bret Hart and instead of anything meaningful he makes a bunch of semantic arguments about how Bret doesn’t hook a jobber’s leg and so he can’t really be “excellence” or some such. So basically he’s the heel equivalent of the grammar Nazis on the internet.

Hunter Hearst Helmsley v. Jeff Hardy

Your future WWE title main event feud! Someone on WWE.com or YouTube (Hi guys!) should do a list of future main events that previously happened as squashes or at least in vastly different forms. Jeffrey controls with a dropkick, but whiffs on the Whisper dive and gets stomped down in the corner. Pedigree finishes at 2:00.

Summerslam Insider with Todd.

Henry Godwinn v. Russ Greenberg

So Godwinn is supposed to be a babyface now, but fans still don’t give a shit about him. Choking, big bot, and Slop Drop finishes at 0:30. And then the poor jobber gets slopped because it’s apparently HILARIOUS.

Meanwhile, Isaac Yankem drills some teeth, and apparently he’s going to do the same to Bret Hart or something. I already miss Nitro.

Jerry Lawler v. Shawn Michaels

But first, Barry shills a sheet of WWF-branded Pogs while the Kid and Savio Vega pretend to play with them in the background. And all of this is brought to you by Stridex! So blame them. Is it seriously any wonder that Nitro started destroying them in short order? This match was actually the best-built thing they had going for weeks because both guys can talk and people care about them. Shawn clowns around and dodges Lawler’s offense (“Here’s a whopper for ya!”) then escapes a piledriver and slugs away while Sid joins us at ringside. This allows Lawler to take over and dump Shawn, and we take a break. Back with Lawler in control via a suplex and a DDT, but he goes up and misses by a mile. Shawn makes the comeback and drops the big elbow, and the superkick sends Sid running in for the DQ at 7:00 or so. The Network was crashing like crazy tonight so my time might be off. Sid proceeds with the beatdown, but Razor makes the save and gets into a big snit with Shawn over possession of the IC belt to wrap up the show. **

Next week: Undertaker v. Tatanka!

Comments

  1. What ever happened to Shawn Michaels's Knights?

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  2. Remember Savio Vega? He's back! In Pog form.

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  3. I had been away from wrestling since around 92 at this point, so I was not watching- but I did go to Summer Slam because I had always wanted to attend a PPV. So I am looking forward to seeing what the build was like, even if it does involve a lot of Godwin.

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  4. I vaguely remember pogs. I had to google them to remember exactly what they were. Probably would've never thought of them again. I love the internet.

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  5. Isn't Savio Vega in the WON Hall of Fame because his pog playing skills were a huge draw in Southeastern Slovenia and directly led to the creation of The Southeastern Slovenian Pog and Wrestling Federation, the SSPWF? No wonder Sting isn't in the WON Hall of Fame, his pog playing never drew a dime.

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  6. Future main event matches that happened in vastly different form: John Cena vs. Bryan Danielson on an episode of Velocity in 2003.

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  7. CruelConnectionNumber2October 16, 2014 at 12:54 AM

    Future main event matches that happened in vastly different form: 9/19/02 SmackDown - Brock Lesnar pins John Cena. Cena's offense consists of 2 punches and a dropkick.

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  8. CruelConnectionNumber2October 16, 2014 at 12:58 AM

    I came home from the shore to watch SummerSlam 1995. During the opening 1-2-3 Kid vs Hakushi match a TREE fell and took out the electric poll wires around the house. That sucked. Even with the refund, the WCW/WWF shows sucked so bad that November's World War 3 (Observe THIS, brother!) was the next PPV ordered.

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  9. Not much different from Summerslam 2014.

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  10. CruelConnectionNumber2October 16, 2014 at 1:46 AM

    Cena connected with 2 finishers that match, right? I can't even remember it, their shitty NOC match erased all the good SummerSlam had.

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  11. Yes...both of which Lesnar essentially no-sold like a jobber hitting his finisher.

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  12. When Edge was a jobber in WCW, did he fight anyone who went on to headline? I've only seen the one match against Kevin Sullivan, was that the only one he had?

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  13. I know Sting fought jobber Kane in WCW.

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  14. 2002-03 Smackdown has to have a ton of these types of matches. Digging through records I see that Undertaker defended the world title against Randy Orton on a random show in May 2002. Pretty sure Batista's first few matches were squashes vs. Orton as well.

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  15. No, he also had one match againts Meng, I think.

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  16. Compared to the WCW Nitro shows, this just looked like wrestlecrap from start to end.

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  17. How did The Kid focus his pog playing his skills while being all messed up pills?

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  18. Remember Alf? Well he's back. In pog form

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  19. Oh u beat me! Lol

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  20. I've been doing it longer, but not consecutively. You, sir, are clearly insane.

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  21. Pogs look like giant pills.

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  22. I had a beast of a slammer and used to win everyones pogs during lunch. Pogs was a great way to introduce youth to gambling lol.

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  23. YankeesHoganTripleHFanOctober 16, 2014 at 7:31 AM

    Whenever I think of Pogs these days I just get reminded of Alf.

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  24. "Meltzer pretty much called this one a career-killer in the Observer for the week."



    Oops.

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  25. Last seen in a daze.

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  26. Yeah, I'd say he missed the mark on that one. But then again, they gave Rhodes time to develop it and get it over. And he worked real hard at it. They tend to pull the plug too early these days. Plus it seems guys have a lot less latitude to develop characters and personalities on their own.

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  27. Meltzer should have said the Goldust gimmick should be a career killer...unless he gets over then it won't be, but if he doesn't get over..."

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  28. If he had stuck with what he was doing with those opening vignettes, quite possibly. They didn't much make you care for the character, one way or another. But as has been stated, they gave Dustin time to work on Goldust, months in fact, and it worked. Especially when he started hitting on Razor.

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  29. It would be fun to see all the suicide bombers giving the Dragonzord a "hot foot".

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  30. Amusing thought for the day. If he had been able to stick around that long, imagine Waylon Mercy offering that handshake to Steve Austin. I don't know who would have laughed more, the audience, JR, or Austin himself.

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  31. They had Dean Douglas criticize Bret? Obviously trying to screw him.

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  32. It could have been a career killer unless it wasn't.

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  33. I can see how it was kind of a long shot that the character would work, and an even LONGER shot that it'd have the kind of longevity that it did/does.

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  34. There's Sting's WM match, then. Fuck 'Taker.

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  35. Damn I wish you would just do the Nitro's :(

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  36. So Jeff was what, like 17 at this point?

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  37. Seems a shame they never went with that feud instead because it seems both guys would have complimented each other better than Douglas working with the Kliq.

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  38. They all got day jobs.


    Eh? Ehhhh? Knights? Day jobs?


    *taps the mic*


    Hello? Hello, is this thing on?

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  39. I didn't watch Raw back then - maybe this was why.

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  40. The "kill the clown" chant was a really big deal at the time on RSPW. One of the smarkiest things to make it on TV at that point. Remember, this was when they were still taking away signs and whatnot.

    Funny thing was Vince McMahon did some kind of Q&A on AOL around that time where he said something to the extent of "kill the clown? I hear ya loud and clear."

    Pretty sure that was Doink's last hurrah, and things were slowly becoming less cartoony after this.

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  41. One thing with Goldust is that they at least were willing to retool/tinker with the gimmick to get the bugs worked out. That saved it from being a career killer, in so far as they saw what wasn't working with it and fixed it and made additional changes as time went on.


    The big irony is that it was during the Booker/Goldust era, that the gimmick reached it's peak potential in terms of the WWE basically saying "fuck it" and writing Goldust as the wacky sidekick and comic relief who serves as a foil for the serious minded best friend. Going the route of Dustin Rhodes is batshit crazy in a fun way was the perfect incarnation of the entire gimmick when you look back.

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