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What the World Was Watching: WWF Monday Night Raw - November 4, 1996

by Logan Scisco

-Vince McMahon and Jerry “the King” Lawler recap the Bret Hart-Steve Austin feud and tell us that Kevin Kelly will be live from Brian Pillman’s home in Walton, Kentucky, where Austin is expected to make an appearance this evening.

-Kelly gives us an overview of the situation at Pillman’s home:  Pillman is immobile after an attack by Austin on a recent edition of WWF Superstars and that his kids have been sent elsewhere because of Austin’s threats.  Wouldn’t you want to call the police too if someone threatened to break into your home?  It’s not like live television is going to save you.

-McMahon and Lawler are in the booth and they are still in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

-Opening Contest:  Goldust (w/Marlena) and The Stalker wrestle to a double-disqualification at 4:36 shown:

Mr. Perfect, Crush, and Hunter Hearst-Helmsley come down to ringside because they are going to team with Goldust at the Survivor Series.  In response, the Stalker brings Marc Mero, Rocky Maivia, and Mark Henry out with him.  Windham isn’t wearing the Stalker face paint, which I guess he figures is silly.  He’s also wearing a WWF t-shirt, which doesn’t match his camouflage ring pants.  These two had been having a feud on the house show circuit that was triggered by the Stalker merely watching some Goldust’s matches from afar and Goldust making some lewd comments about the Stalker.  Goldust has an interesting counter for the superplex, as he kisses his opponent to avoid the move.  The ending features one of the least intense brawls you have ever seen, as the two Survivor Series teams square off, and the crowd quietly applauds when the faces win.  This was just a paint by the numbers match and it didn’t do anything for either guy.  Rating:  *½

-Dok Hendrix does the Survivor Series report.

-Kelly interviews Pillman and his wife in their home.  Pillman says that Austin has made their feud personal.  McMahon hijacks the interview and asks Pillman if he feels like a hostage in his own home.  Pillman pulls out a gun in response and a friend tells him that Austin is here as we cut out for a commercial break.

-The Karate Fighters Holiday Tournament sees Sid beat Marlena.  Last week, Mr. Perfect beat Phineas Godwinn.

-Two of Pillman’s friends try to restrain Austin, but he beats them up in the drive way, using a red jeep and some kid’s toys as weapons.  Austin then tries to get into the house, but the doors are locked.

-The Sultan (w/Bob Backlund & the Iron Sheik) defeats Alex “the Pug” Porteau via submission to the camel clutch at 2:07 shown:

A simple squash for the Sultan here, but he’s still not over with the crowd.  They really gave up on the Porteau experiment early in his run.  I think he got a couple of victories on WWF Superstars and was jobbed out to all of big heel names after that.

-Austin breaks into Pillman’s home and enters the living room, where Pillman points a gun at him.  Kelly and his wife scream as the camera feed cuts out.  Lawler is the most rational one during the entire segment by saying that someone should call the police.

-Ross hosts a face off segment between WWF Champion Shawn Michaels and Sid.  Michaels said that he forgave Sid for powerbombing him three times after WrestleMania XI, but Sid says that’s bull.  Ross tries to rile things up between the two and Michaels says Sid is not in his league and Sid says that’s true because he’s not in the “little” league.  Good comeback.  Both men destroy the podium and start shoving each other, but Jim Cornette comes down with Vader, Clarence Mason, Owen Hart, and the British Bulldog.  Sid and Michaels join forces to clear the ring, but after they do so they get into a staredown until they get separated by a sea of WWF officials.

-A summary of the Pillman-Austin segments is shown.

-The Fake Razor Ramon (w/The Fake Diesel) defeats Wildman” Marc Mero (w/Sable) with the Razor’s Edge at 7:47 shown:

The commentary isn’t concerned about the match as Ross takes jabs at McMahon for putting Pillman’s life in danger.  Mero runs through some of his normal moves, but his heart isn’t in this one and he’s lethargic out there.  It doesn’t help that he’s wrestling the Fake Razor, who moves as slow as molasses.  Perfect and Helmsley interfere and Razor goes over in a puzzling booking decision.  Sure, it’s not a clean victory, but the Fake Razor had hardly beaten anyone at this point and having Mero job to him in any fashion makes him appear weak and undeserving of the Intercontinental title.  Rating:  ½*

-We get another recap of the Pillman-Austin issue.

-The satellite feed is restored to the Pillman home and Pillman is being restrained by his friends.  Austin charges back into the living room and as he is restrained by Pillman’s buddies, Pillman comes after him with a gun and curses and points a gun at him.  All Kelly can do is scream “call the police” because grabbing Pillman or the gun isn’t too important.  That plays us out.

The Final Report Card:  The Pillman-Austin stuff was the focal point of this show and was very controversial for its time period.  After the angle aired, the WWF and Pillman had to apologize for the threatened use of the gun and the cursing that wasn’t edited out.  The WWF was also criticized because people flooded the northern Kentucky 911 lines to report Austin breaking into Pillman’s home.  Some of this still holds up in that it’s not as corny as when HHH invaded Randy Orton’s home a few years back, but they might’ve done better if they sent Jim Ross to do the interview instead of Kelly.  His shrieking like a school girl during the serious parts was very annoying and unmanly.  The wrestling on this show is bad, but if you are interested in the Pillman-Austin stuff you can YouTube it because several people have put the different segments together.

Monday Night War Rating:  2.3 (vs. 3.4 for Nitro)

Show Evaluation:  Neutral