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The SmarK RAW Rant – July 14 2003

July 14, 2003 | Posted by Scott Keith

The SmarK RAW Rant – July 14, 2003

– Dangit, my Shawn Michaels DVD arrived today, and I have to watch RAW. Speaking of the DVD, I’m getting a lot of requests to review it, but I’m a little stumped as to what people would be expecting out of that review. I’ve already watched the ladder match to death over the years and I don’t think I’d have much more to say about it than in the Wrestlemania X rant, and I just did the Shawn-Diesel match a little while ago. I guess if you’re really desperate to see me give ****3/4 and ***** to the same matches again, I could redo them all, but honest, I watch those matches a LOT and my opinion hasn’t changed in a long time. Back when I still did comps there was a point where I’d literally be watching the matches on this DVD 5 or 6 times a week, in fact. There isn’t actually any content as such on the DVD – it’s just the matches and little bits of intro from Shawn, plus all the extras. So really, aside from critiquing the 5.1 mix and noting that they overdubbed Dr. Jonathan Holliday on the Blow-Away spot and replaced him with Jerry Lawler, there’s not much there to do. If y’all really want the matches redone, I will, but it’ll have to wait until next month because I’m still finishing the new book this week.

– Speaking of popular requests, I’ve had quite a few people asking for “High Fidelity”, and since that happens to be one of my all-time favorite movies, look for it on Wednesday. And speaking of DVDs in general, be sure to check out IGN’s DVD site (dvd.ign.com), where longtime readers of mine might recognize new site editor Andy Patrizio’s name from the RSPW days. Odd how some people’s names pop up again when and where you least expect it.

– Live from Indianapolis, IN.

– Your hosts are Coach & King. Oh man, they never learn.

– Jericho’s Highlight Reel starts us out, as Jericho is damn mad and he’s not gonna take it anymore. There’s paranoia and unrest backstage, and even Jericho (the toughest man in wrestling) is worried for his safety. So Jericho welcomes back Eric Bischoff, hoping for order to be restored. His doctors warned him to take two months off, but he just couldn’t stand idly by any longer. Kane won’t be here tonight, but there’ll be an interview from Stamford later on. Goodie. The “obscenely expensive Jeritron 5000” reveals secret footage from last week of Kane throwing RVD through a door. Austin interrupts the rather dull tete-a-tete and wants answers from Bischoff. They argue about how to deal with Kane – Austin wanted to use tough love and kick the crap out of him. The only guy with any credibility left as a tough guy is the one guy who can’t wrestle. Austin goes for Bischoff in lieu of Kane, but decides that it’s not worth it. Jericho eggs him on, however, by letting him know that no one wants him here. That earns him a stunner. Well, that didn’t really accomplish much.

– Trish Stratus, Kevin Nash & Scott Steiner v. Test, Victoria & Stevie Richards. I can only pray for a quick death here. Coach & Lillian seem to disagree on whether this is “intergender” or “mixed” rules. Either way, it’ll suck. Steiner hammers on Richards in the corner to start and chops away. Belly to belly and the pushups follow. Steiner stops to chase Test, and then brings in Trish, who goes with Victoria. Victoria blocks the kick, but Trish uses the Matrix counter and a high kick for two. Test hotshots her to turn the tide, however. Test comes in and actually shows a bit of heel charisma while taunting Trish, but she fights back on him. A shoulderblock ends that. Victoria tags herself in, however, and hammers away on Trish. Slingshot suplex gets two. Trish comes back with a neckbreaker, and Nash gets the hot tag. Richards hides behind Victoria while Test bails, so Nash takes out both Richards & Victoria. Big boot for Richards and Poochiebomb finishes at 5:11. The stuff with the chicks was decent, the rest not. *

– Meanwhile, Jericho & Bischoff argue the legalities of Austin’s actions.

– Lance Storm v. Maven. Lance threatens to sue the crowd for chanting “boring”. Not a bad idea. It worked for “Coupon: The Movie”. They work the mat to start and Lance misses a charge, but takes him down into a chinlock. Maven escapes and shoulderblocks Storm and they blow a hiptoss in embarrassing fashion. Storm gets a corner clothesline and a dropkick in the corner, and he stomps Maven down and chokes him out. He hammerlocks Maven (which prompts the dreaded chant again), who rolls him up for two. Lawler talks about how fans don’t want to see guys grabbing a hold. This company boggles my mind – they’re trying to train guys on house shows to slow it down, and here’s Lawler on TV preaching the opposite. Storm hits the chinlock as the announcers bury the match, but Maven fights back with a leg lariat for two. Backdrop, but Storm tries a suplex, only to get dumped. Maven brings him back in and goes up with a cross-body for two. There was a rather silly double-rollthrough spot there. Storm superkicks him for two. Maven goes up with a sunset flip, but Storm reverses to the Maple Leaf. Maven makes the ropes. He reverses for the pin at 6:02. What the hell did Storm do to deserve this brutal run? Match was sloppy as hell and way long. *1/4

– La Resistance come out to protest being left off the show last week. They probably would have been cheered, actually. It’s also a celebration of Bastille Day (man, I knew Rush was big, but geez…), so they sing the French national anthem and we cut to commercial out of nowhere. Um, yeah.

– We return from commercial and the Dudleyz lay them out and wave the flag. Oh, and the French national anthem apparently sucks. So we sing the Star Spangled Banner instead. It’s not only silly xenophobia, it’s bad singing.

– You know, I’m getting really sick of Scotsman busting on my cribbage skills on AIM, and it’s time to do something about it. First of all, I had the flu that day and a 120 degree fever, and I wasn’t using my usual browser. So I’m gonna head down to Rio DeJaneiro to compete in the annual Intercontinental Cribbage Tournament (results to come on Smackdown, not that there’s any doubt who will win) and when I get back, if you’ve got the GUTS, you’ll meet me in a rematch on Yahoo so I can double-skunk your ass back to Scotland! Of course, since you wear a SKIRT, you’ll probably hide behind it, so I won’t hold my breath waiting for an answer. Oh, and your website and readers all suck.

– The Dudley Boyz v. Evolution. This is elimination rules. Flair starts with Bubba, who overpowers him, and they trade chops. Bubba backdrops him out of the corner, and brings in Spike. Flair actually sells a slap with a Flair Flop, but comes back with chops. Spike keeps fighting and dropkicks him into the corner, but Flair goes to the eyes. Spike works on Orton’s arm, but Randy dropkicks him to the floor, where Flair stands on his head. Okay, serious question: What’s the difference between Spike Dudley and Zach Gowen? Both are pretty much equally gifted in terms of wrestling, but Gowen is lacking a leg, and therefore he gets preferential treatment and a main event push. That’s why he has no long-term credibility. D-Von gets the hot tag and clotheslines Orton, then cleans house on the other Evolutions, and a neckbreaker gets two on Orton. Flying forearm gets two. Spike jumps on him for two. It’s a big brawl and Orton finishes Spike with RKO at 5:02. HHH comes in and pounds D-Von (damn I was hoping it was a career-ending injury), and the bonzo gonzosity continues. The Dudleyz hit Orton with a Dudley Device, and splash Flair & HHH in the corner. Bubba elbows Flair down and sets up the Whazzup Drop, but HHH breaks it up. He takes it instead, and then Orton gets 3D’d. That gets two for D-Von. HHH uses the French flag to put D-Von down and Orton pins him at 7:33. Flags can be very abrasive to the skin. So it’s Evolution v. Bubba and I’m sure there’s a joke in there about Arkansas somewhere. D-Von is prevented from getting the tables by referees, and we take a break. We return with Bubba and Flair trading chops, and Orton comes in and stomps away. Bubba comes back with a backdrop, and goes low on HHH to escape the Pedigree. Bubba Bomb on Orton, but Flair saves. Flair dumps him, so Bubba makes lemonade and puts HHH onto the table. He goes up, but Flair shoves him off and KICK WHAM PEDIGREE finishes, as Orton gets the pin at 14:38. Orton gets all three pins, which is what they need to do. This thing was a mess, though. *1/2

– Meanwhile, Bischoff makes RVD v. Kane for next week.

– Meanwhile, Jericho tries to gather signatures for legal action against Austin.

– Rodney Mack and Teddy Long are out to petition for a black man to take over for Austin, such as Johnnie Cochrane or Snoop Dogg. And we take a commercial break.

– Rodney Mack v. Rosey. Just FIRE this guy already. Either one, it works both ways. Rosey overpowers Mack and legdrops him to start, and gets a corner splash. Long goes low on him to break up the samoan drop and Mack gets the pin at 0:54. DUD Okay, feud over, move on. But wait, Hurricane hits the ring with a missile dropkick on Mack. I DON’T CARE. No one cares about Mack’s lame “black power” character, no one cares about Rosey’s “big fat samoan” character, and no one cares about Hurricane’s jobbed-out comic book character.

– Intercontinental title: Booker T v. Christian. Booker forearms him down to start, and gets an elbow. He chops away and gets a backdrop for two. Christian knees him and pounds away, but Booker sidekicks him and goes up. Booker gets sent into the post and the stairs, and they head back in, where Christian gets two. Christian stomps away and chokes him out. Knee to the gut gets two. We hit the chinlock as I ponder if there’s ever been two people with less chemistry booked in a feud that’s gone on this long. Booker escapes, but Christian uses the hair to take him down. Neckbreaker gets two. Christian slugs away, but Booker dropkicks him. Charge hits elbow, but Booker gets the spinebuster for two. The ref is bumped, as usual for these matches, and Christian gets the Unprettier for nothing. Another ref runs in to count two. Booker comes back with the Bookend for two. Sidekick and Spinarooni, but the axe kick misses and Christian rolls him up and uses the tights for the pin at 6:29 to regain the title. BUT WAIT! The first ref argues the point, however (which is the classic Dusty Finish), so Austin brings out a THIRD ref and the match continues. Who restarts a match on pulled tights? Axe kick quickly finishes for Booker. Same match as it always is, and it still sucks. *1/4 Austin then lays a beating on Christian and stuns him. This Austin stuff is nuts. Feeding heels to a crippled ex-wrestler is pointless because AUSTIN CAN’T WRESTLE.

– Kane brings JR a present as they wait for the interview.

– Women’s title: Gail Kim v. Molly Holly. Watch this match die like Katie Vick. They trade wristlocks to start and Molly gets two. Gail bridges out and does the running escape, but Molly gets a neckbreaker for two. She stomps Kim down and gets two. The intelligentsia in the front row have a sign saying “Gal Kim”. Now that’s starpower. Kim gets a rollup for two, but Molly gets two. Choking follows. Kim comes back with a headscissors and an elbow. She gets a pair of ranas for the pin at 3:13. Wow, she can do a rana, what a phenomenon. Kim’s got nothing. It wouldn’t be so bad if she was over or popular or something. Ѕ*

– Back in Stamford, Kane threatens JR with a can of gasoline if he makes fun of him. You can tell it’s gasoline because the ancient can helpfully says “gasoline” on the side. Apparently Kane lives in Amish country where they don’t have those neato modern plastic gascans.

– Main Event Interview: JR chats with Kane in Stamford. But first, a video package to set up the interview, oddly enough the same one we saw to start the show. Could they stretch this show out any longer? Kane whines about his scarred flesh, but JR points out that his face looks fine. Kane admits that he might have been lying about the scarred flesh, but he’s still a monster. JR thinks he needs help and thinks the fans won’t care about his problems. But the people are LIARS, sez Kane, so it’s BBQ time. Sadly, Austin interrupts by coming out to the ring, but Kane beats on JR and lights him on fire. See, now they were going fine up until they lit him on fire. Good lord. Bischoff accuses Austin of being the one who caused the whole thing. Isn’t beating someone up enough anymore? Did we need to get into setting people on fire, too? Bischoff announces that next week Linda will fire Austin.

The Bottom Line:

Gosh, it’s so rare that I get a chance to use a line like “The interview was going fine until Jim Ross got set on fire” but somehow I don’t think sitting through that boring show was enough incentive to wait and see it. Maybe if they had plugged Jim getting burned to START the show, people would watch. Even worse, now we’re stuck with Coach again for the foreseeable future. DAMN YOU AUSTIN! DAMN YOU STRAIGHT TO HELL!

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