WWF RAW – October 13th, 1997 – Landon Arena — Topeka, KS
WWF Raw is War opens with a biography of the Legion of Doom, narrated by Jim Ross. It features old photos of the Road Warriors, plus clips of a sit-down interview where they speak like people. They have vowed to retire if they don’t win the tag team titles from the Godwinns tonight.
Too much sludge and not enough grime!WWFRaw emanates from Topeka, Kansas tonight. Noticeably missing from Jim Ross’s introduction is the word, “live”. Bret Hart strolls to the ring with his belt, Canadian flag, and jorts. Bringing up the rear are Owen Hart and his Slammy-bearer Jim Neidhart. “Conspicuous by his absence”, says Vince McMahon, is the British Bulldog, who is celebrating an anniversary and a birthday (of his wife Diana, born on October 8th, five days before this episode would air).
Before Bret can speak, Shawn Michaels interrupts. Appearing on the Titantron with Hunter, Chyna, and Rude, HBK rolls footage of himself giving brain to the Canadian flag. I think I’m using that term correctly. Triple H then says he’s younger, better, and larger-penised than the Hitman before showing his countout victory over Hart. Bret challenges either of the “two degenerates” to fight him right now, but Shawn declines, calling the WWF title a “stupid piece of tin” in the process. Twice. He then deems himself and his three allies, “D-Generation X” (although Rick Rude is a Baby Boomer). All Bret has to say is that they won’t even make it to The Survivor Series. “Notwithstanding that” says Vince, but the Nation’s music cuts him off. Owen faces Kama next.
After the commercial, DX walks out on stage, distracting Owen and allowing Kama to get the drop on the IC champion. Michaels and Triple H steal headsets to bury Owen on commentary and say Bret must have put him to sleep by talking before the match. They then start eating bananas for no reason at all, I hope, while the Nation stands at ringside. Meanwhile, the cameras stay off DX for as long as possible until they verbally spar with Jerry Lawler. The NOD beats up the Hart Foundation at ringside, resulting in a no contest, while Shawn puts on one of the Nation’s hats.
Backstage, the Godwinns say they’re glad to put their newly-won tag titles on the line if it means ridding the WWF of the Legion of Doom. Segueing to the next match, Vince says “we go from the maxis to the minis”. Fortunately, The Godwinns don’t hear McMahon compare them to women’s hygiene products.
El equipo de Mosaic y Tarantula take on Nova and Max Mini, who come to the ring to Savio Vega’s old music. Apropos of nothing, Jerry Lawler says he wants Marv Albert to join him on commentary, leading Jim Ross to remark that the two broadcasters have a lot in common (meaning sexual assault). Meanwhile, the minis are moving fast; Max Mini jumps onto Mosaic’s shoulders, then transitions to a an arm drag for the evening’s first Maneuver.
Nova follows this up with a combination head scissors/wristlock takeover Maneuver (#2) on both his opponents. Nova then leapfrogs backwards with another Maneuver (#3) to avoid Mosaic, setting up Max Mini to topear a ambos rudos (con giro). Vince chuckles relentlessly until Nova does a tope of his own and lands on his head. Now King is the one laughing. Max immediately sunset-flips Mosaic, nearly scoring a four-count to win the match for the tecniquitos. “What a Maneuver [#4]!” remarks McMahon upon a replay.
The announcers then detail the upcoming WWF live events, including one in Tulsa that JR’s Mama will attend. But up next, Shawn Michaels squares off with Flash Funk. Sure, why not? Jerry Lawler hopes Funk “knocks the bananas” out of Michaels.
Speaking of Flash, the Funkster beat Rockabilly this past Saturday after botched interference from the Honky Tonk Man. This prompted the R-O-A-Double-D-O-G to come to the ring and offer to team with ‘Billy. In response, Mr. Gunn smashed a guitar over Honky’s head and joined forces with Mr. Jammes.
Flash Funk comes to the ring, but it’s not Shawn’s music that follows, but Kane’s. Unwisely, Funk picks a fight with Kane, who quickly chokeslams and tombstones him. The scheduled Michaels-Funk match never happens — and we never even found out if it was for the European title! Paul Bearer promises that Kane will destroy everyone in his way until he gets to The Undertaker. “Asses [sic] to ashes!”
With Kane gone and a microphone jammed under Flash Funk’s chin, DX runs to the ring to count HBK’s pinfall. Announcing the results, Rick Rude calls Shawn the “Pecan” of the WWF until Chyna tells him it’s “Icon”. The announcers take particular exception Triple H chopping Shawn’s crotch from behind, with McMahon concurring with Bret Hart that they were “a bunch of degenerates”.
Shawn even lies on his back, thrusts his pelvis, and debuts the D-X chop, which is certainly not a crotch chop or else he wouldn’t have kept doing it after finding God.
Next, two members of the Disciples of Apocalypse take on two members of the Truth Commission (it doesn’t really matter which ones). Last Saturday night, The Interrogator (Kurrgan) and the Jackyl wrestled the bald DOA guys; this week, it’s the other two Truthers. Speaking of Truthers, Vince has himself a good chuckle speculating that Bill Clinton and Janet Reno are “doing the wild thing together”, but his mood abruptly changes when Jerry Lawler suggests the Attorney General is a man. Jim Ross, sarcastically asks for more off-topic discussions, so Lawler makes fun of John Denver’s fatal plane crash and confuses him for Bob Denver (who played Gilligan). At last, the commentators start talking about the match, at which point the Jackyl low-bridges one of the Harris Brothers, resulting in a DQ and a schmozz.
Too much fuzz, and not enough dice! It’s time for the WarZone! Stone Cold comes to the ring to sign his reinstatement papers, which includes a hold-harmless clause. Austin insists that Vince sign first, so McMahon puts on his cheaters to have a good look. Vince signs, and Austin celebrates their deal. No no no, says McMahon. Austin has to sign, too. So he does. He teases another stunner on Vince, but instead offers a handshake. They shake, but Austin jerks McMahon’s arm to show him who’s boss (Not literally, though. Vince is the boss).
But there’s one thing Vince still wants to know: Why did Austin cost Faarooq the Intercontinental Title? Austin spells out what everybody else has already figured out, which is that he wanted Owen to win the title so he could beat him for it. Faarooq and the Nation aren’t satisfied with Austin’s motives, so Stone Cold challenges any of them to a fight; Rocky gets the nod and immediately eats a stunner before Austin flees.
At Lazer Tag spy headquarters, Sable tells the boss (Arnold Skaaland) that she’s completed her mission. But Skaaland unmasks as Freddie Blassie, so Sable blasts him and his evil henchmen (with invisible Lazer Tag lasers). Blassie opens a safe and frees Mascarita Sagrada (AKA Nova, the guy who landed on his head earlier tonight), who says, “The script writers couldn’t come up with a funny ending, so they decided to cut my part SHORT”. Well, he’s right about the writers.
In the crowd, a fan holds up a sign reading, “Joey is an wimp” [sic]. Backstage, the Road Warriors speak about not wanting to rest on their laurels like Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage. If they lose tonight, they’ll leave the WWF (and presumably go to WCW).
In Light Heavyweight action, a fresh-faced Tajiri takes on Brian Christopher — but first, Vince McMahon plugs Jim Cornette’s upcoming rant on Phil Mushnick. When pressed by Lawler about his opinion of Mushnick, Vince says he’s “a miserable son of a [bleep]”. McMahon turns it around and asks the King his opinion of Brian Christopher. “Is he really too sexy?” asks the boss, before Christopher French-kisses his own biceps.
Too Sexy opens the match mocking his opponent with bowing and karate chops. Tajiri cuts Brian down with buzzsaw kicks, but misses a spinning heel kick when Too Sexy ducks. Tajiri still makes incidental contact with Christopher who, unsure wha to do, eventually sells it by dropping to his knee.
Amid constant paternity accusations by Ross and McMahon against Lawler, the King says the finance company got his wife pregnant when he didn’t pay the credit card bill for his vasectomy. Brian Christopher is out of position for Tajiri’s handspring elbow, but the Japanese rookie still catches him with the Maneuver (#5). After he hits Christopher with a jawbreaker, Too Sexy spits into the audience, leading Lawler to wonder, “Was that a tooth!?” As always, it wasn’t. Vince compares this match to Antonio Inoki’s wrestler vs. boxer match, which is a nice way of saying it sucks. Speaking of “good investments”, Vince mentions a new Hulk Hogan movie (referring to Assault on Devil’s Island) and chuckles.
Brian Christopher tries to finish off Tajiri with a double knee-drop from the top rope, but Tajiri moves, leading Brian to land knees-first on the canvas. Tajiri covers Christopher with an O’Connor Roll so deep, Too Sexy can’t kick out in time. The referee pretends he does, however, and Brian schoolboys Tajiri with a handful of tights to win the match. As a parting shot, Tajiri kicks Christopher over the top rope.
In his weekly rant, Jim Cornette runs down Phil Mushnick, who hates pro wrestling — WWF, WCW, ECW, all of it. He even writes as if Vince McMahon and the WWF were guilty of steroid distribution when in fact they were “proven totally innocent”. In the process, Cornette even tacitly defends Ted Turner. But what really grinds Cornette’s gears is that Phil exploited Brian Pillman’s death, implying it was drug-related to tear down the wrestling industry (unlike Vince McMahon, who did so to defend the wrestling industry).
Goldust takes on Savio Vega next. Goldust and Marlena were supposed to renew their wedding vows last week on Raw, says Vince, but did no do so out of respect for the family of the man who’d held Marlena as a sex slave. Vince notes that Goldust entered the WWF as a movie buff and shoehorns another reference to Hulk Hogan’s movie career. “The only thing more painful than watching the Hulkster try to act is watching him try to still wrestle”, says McMahon of his future WWF champion.
The referee ejects the other three Boricuas after interference, but Savio savate-kicks Goldust to take control of the match on his own. Savio then corners Marlena, which JR says would make Ellen DeGeneres jealous (because Marlena’s a woman). When Goldust tries to make the save, Savio kicks him right in the face. Back in the ring, Goldust counters a splash with “knees to the abdominal area”. Goldust attempts a Curtain Call, but Savio rolls through it and kicks him in the face again. After the referee catches Savio using the ropes in his pin attempt, replay then airs of the previous Maneuver(#6).
The referee then turns his back to dispose of Marlena’s cigar, allowing Goldust to hit Savio with her purse and pin him. Goldust then runs off with Marlena, which will make Greg Louganis jealous, I guess. The King then checks the purse to find out what made the purse shot such a Devastating Maneuver (#7). And if you want find out what Jim Ross has to say in response to Eric Bischoff, you can dial the WWF Superstar Line!
Triple H enters the ring with Shawn and Chyna to take on the Patriot. During the opponent’s flag-waving, Rick Rude literally kicks his ass, then throws coffee in his face and hits him with a briefcase. As always, D-X is trying to prove they’re better than Bret Hart, whether it be at wrestling, cutting promos, or making The Patriot look like a doofus. Michaels declares Triple H the winner, but Commissioner Slaughter interrupts the proceedings.
Due to the actions of “R.R. Rude”, The Patriot can’t wrestle tonight, so Triple H will instead wrestle a volunteer. While Hunter and Shawn shield their faces from Slaughter’s spittle, Rick Rude goes backstage. After a lengthy rant by Sarge about respect, Shawn tells Slaughter to suck it, which is bleeped out on this taped broadcast. “Un-believable!” says Vince.
Ahmed Johnson comes out dressed like Kane while Triple H and Shawn feign fear. Ahmed barely makes it to the ring before being quadruple-teamed by the Nation of Domination. On stage, D-X enjoys popcorn (and thankfully not bananas) as they watch the beatdown until the LOD and Ken Shamrock storm the ring and even the sides against the Nation. This is more intriguing than a Game of Thrones book by George Ravishing Rick Martin!
The Godwinns come out after the commercial break to defend their titles in this lucha de apuestas. As if the stakes couldn’t get any higher, the winners earn a post-match interview with Michael Cole. The LOD control the early going before the Godwinns turn it around. Meanwhile, Jerry Lawler speculates what the Road Warriors might do when they have to retire; he predicts they’ll run a face-painting booth at a carnival or — get this — open a gym.
The Road Warriors’ troubles continue after the break until Hawk hits consecutive clotheslines to both Godwinns. Hawk makes the tag to Animal, but the referee had his back turned and therefore makes Animal go back to his corner. Henry runs Animal into the steps, leading a number of referees to escort the original Road Warrior up the ramp. The Godwinns double-team Hawk in the ring until Earl Hebner tries to break it up. Henry, genre-savvy wrestler that he is, gives the referee the Slop Drop to try to get himself disqualified, thus retaining the titles and forcing the Legion of Doom into retirement. None of the other referees saw the assault on their colleague, however, so the match continues.
Animal breaks away from the referees and runs in clean house, The LOD then attempts a Doomsday Device on Phineas, but Uncle Cletus knocks Hawk off the top rope. Cletus then tries to hit Animal with a horseshoe but misses, hits Henry, and gets clotheslined out of the ring (and his hat). Hawk then hits a flying clothesline on Phineas, and Mike Chioda counts the pin to crown new tag team champions. The Road Warriors are whisked off for an interview with Michael Cole.
Meanwhile, incensed at the backfiring interference, the former champs beat up Cletus, breaking his nose. WWF Raw goes off the air before the Road Warriors interview, which isn’t fair to Michael Cole, even if he is an wimp.
7 Maneuvers (Year total: 125)
1 JR’s Mama