The SmarK Rant for Monday Night RAW – 12.18.95
FINALLY the horror of 1995 comes to a close. However, the ad wizards who run the Network have omitted the next two episodes, because I think they’re just fucking with us at this point.
Live from Newark, DE. There’s more than one Newark?
Your hosts are Vince McMahon & Jerry Lawler, and we have yet another minor makeover of the show with new purple graphics.
Jeff Jarrett v. Fatu
Fatu is now making a difference by dancing like a jackass. Like he’s ever going to get over as a dancing fat guy. So Jarrett made his epic return at In Your House V and people already don’t care again, mostly because Roadie had most of the heat. Jarrett struts and gets chased out of the ring, as Vince DEMANDS action. You’ve got the wrong show then. Back in, Jarrett tries hitting him in the head and gets nowhere, and Fatu slugs him down, but misses a blind charge and Jarrett chokes him out on the ropes. They head out to the floor and we take a break. Back with Jarrett working on the shoulder as I should note that Fatu’s tights are now “Makin’ a change” instead of “Makin’ a difference.” I feel like that is the missing ingredient in this character. Fatu comes back with a backdrop and corner clothesline, and a backbreaker gets two. Ace Crusher follows, but he hurts his bad shoulder doing the move and Jarrett sends him into the post again before Ahmed Johnson runs in for the DQ at 7:38. Like really, JJ was going for a figure-four when Ahmed ran in, it’s not likely that was going to affect the bad shoulder. But then Ahmed isn’t exactly a pillar of intelligence anyway. Usual Jeff Jarrett borefest. *1/2
Meanwhile, Goldust is horny for Razor Ramon.
Meanwhile, Diesel gets into a staredown with Undertaker over Taker’s impending title shot.
Buddy Landell v. Bob Holly
Oh man, poor Budro, who could fuck up any push ever given to him. Apparently he was in line for the NWA World title in 1985 and got busted for coke to lose the title shot, although Buddy’s version is that he missed a plane. How dumb did you have to be to get busted for COCAINE in the 80s? They practically handed that shit out at the door! And shortly after this match he slipped in a parking lot, tore up his leg, and never returned to the WWF. Buddy is using Flair’s old music and robe, which I’m sure was no coincidence. They exchange chops in the corner as Lawler notes that Buddy is a 17 year veteran, which is not the kind of thing they typically brought up. Buddy slugs Holly down and works a headlock, but puts his head down and gets DDT’d. This crowd absolutely could not care less about this match. Holly comes back with a rana and some clotheslines for two, but misses a dropkick and Buddy finishes with the corkscrew elbow at 6:51 of boredom. *
Ted Dibiase appears on the Brother Love show and tells us all about Xanta Claus, who lives in the South Pole and steals gifts from little children. Now that was a loser gimmick.
In two weeks: The RAW Bowl! Lucky us.
Intercontinental title: Razor Ramon v. Yokozuna
Goldust is watching from the entrance, which pretty much telegraphs the finish right away. Ramon works on the arm for a while, but Yoko tosses him. Back in, Ramon goes back to the arm, but Yoko applies the VULCAN NERVE PINCH OF DOOM. Ramon fights out of that and slugs away, then goes back to the arm as we take a break. Back with Yoko holding ANOTHER nerve pinch, but Ramon fights out again until Yoko cuts him off and pounds away in the corner. And then we get choking before Ramon comes back with a bulldog and Undertaker wheels out a casket to mess with Yoko. And Yoko is so terrified that he runs away at 10:35. Were they supposed to be building up to a THIRD casket match between those two? ½*
Razor Ramon admits that, yeah, he’s handsome, but he only digs women and not Goldust. That’s pretty cool of him, actually, and totally unlike the usual knee-jerk homophobic angle. Although a few years later we’d find out that he was really into groping senior citizens while drunk off his ass.
And oh yeah, we wrap it up with TELL ME A LIE, as Shawn Michaels might be done for good, you guys! Now, which lie are they referring to? The one where Shawn didn’t fail a drug test in 1993? Or the one where he had career-ending knee surgery in 1997 and had to miss Wrestlemania?
This was a weak-ass live RAW. Kind of apropos for the year in general, I guess. Next up: 1996, with alternating RAW and Nitro reviews from now on!