I wish I couldn’t see them.
Tonight’s RAW recap is brought to you by the letters “S, A, O and F”, as in “Sam Adams OctoberFest.” Yummy down on this indeed…
Tonight marked the end of RAW’s five-year run on Lifetime for Men, otherwise known as Spike TV. And what a long, strange five years it’s been. I just hope that the show’s return to the USA Network means a return to the RAW of old. Because tonight’s episode would’ve been more at home on my local cable access channel.
Vince McMahon opens the show by promising a championship match, but first he has a few announcements to make. He starts by thanking Spike TV for five great years. And how does Spike repay him? But bleeping out ten seconds of his speech, then continuing to censor the show throughout the rest of the broadcast. Jebus, who’s running Spike’s dump button? Pig Vomit? I kept expecting JR to starting enunciating “W-ENNNN-B-C.” Audio dropouts, “Technical Difficulties” screens, you name it, if there were a way for Spike to ruin the broadcast, they tried it. Unfortunately, if they really wanted to ruin it, all they needed to do was let the show run uninterrupted. Yes, it was that bad. Kurt Angle interrupts Vince to complain about not being in the championship match at next week’s Homecoming event on USA. Angle says since he beat Cena at Unforgiven, he deserves the title shot. Vince says Angle makes a good point, and seems ready to grant Angle the match, when he’s interrupted by HBK. “Hold on a second, Moneybags,” HBK says. And it’s all downhill from there. Eventually, after a bit of verbal sparring with Angle (“I beat you first!” “I beat you worse!”), Vince makes a 30-minute Iron Man match for next week’s Homecoming special on USA. The person who scores the most pinfalls in 30 minutes wins the match and whatever’s behind Curtain #3.
Both men satisfied, Vince introduces the championship match he’d alluded to earlier: Trish Stratus versus Victoria.
(1) Trish Stratus defeats Victoria via DQ to retain Women’s Championship I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of this match. Probably because it’s been so long since RAW has featured two women in a match who actually know how to fake-wrestle. Of course, they had to ruin it right afterward by having Torrie, Candice and Ashley get involved. Eventually, Ashley and Trish rip off Candice’s dress, stripping her down to her bra and panties. For some reason, this totally sets Candice off. “Have you ever been humiliated on national TV, Ashley?” asks the former Playboy model, as if she doesn’t strip down to her bra and panties every other week of her own volition. “Well, you’re going to be, cuz next week on RAW’s Homecoming special we’re going to have a Bra and Panties match.” That’ll be on the USA Network, in case you were wondering.
“I’m not worthy.”
(2) Big Show defeats Snitsky in a Street Fight A Street Fight is the same as a Hardcore Match, except it’s Old School. By which I mean it doesn’t have the words “Hard” or “Core” involved. Basically, anything goes, and the wrestlers are allowed to bring weapons into the ring. This usually involves trash cans, trash can lids, street signs and an assortment of other metal items that bend and go bang. If nothing else, these matches are fun to watch, as outside of Bum Fights it’s not often you get to watch someone smash a stop sign over someone else’s head. Tonight, however, was something special. Snitsky hit Big Show with everything but the proverbial kitchen sink, and still couldn’t put the giant down. So Big Show reaches under the ring and pulls out – what else? A kitchen sink. One shot to Snitsky’s head and the match is over.
Yes, that is going to leave a mark.
After the break, Ric Flair comes out to talk about the beating he took at the hands of Chris Masters and Carlito last week. “I’ve been jumped from behind more times than Coach at a taping of Scared Straight,” he says. Okay, he didn’t really say that about Coach. But he has been jumped a lot. And he’s always got even. “Back in the day, I had help from the Four Horsemen. Today, however, it only takes one.” At that, Flair walks backstage to grab a bottle of Prell and case of Evian. Ooh, he must be talking about Triple H! Actually, he grabs a sledgehammer, but he’s still talking about Triple H, who will be making his return next week at Homecoming on USA.
Eric Bischoff is seen talking to someone on his cell phone when Cena comes in and interrupts. Turns out Cena’s been doing a little Internet research on Frosty Top and found out Eric knows martial arts. Maybe next week’s match won’t be as easy as Cena thought. Wait, Cena knows kung-fu too. Ah-ha! Sadly, reading this is still better than watching it was. I hope Cena’s funnier once RAW moves to the USA Network.
(3) Kerwin White defeats Shelton Benjamin via Pinfall Poor Shelton Benjamin. This time last year, he was getting an unbelievable push. Twelve months later and he’s reduced to fighting a bleached-blonde Hispanic who claims to represent all of “Middle America” because he golfs. Over the past week, Kerwin White hired a caddie. A stupid caddie, evidently, as Kerwin is still driving the golf cart himself. Dumbass. Shelton shows off his lack of mic skills with some lame “You got a caddy to carry your clubs and wash your balls” smack, and then the match is on. Fortunately, it’s not on for long, as the Caddy grabs Shelton’s foot, which enables Kerwin to get a cheap pin. Afterward, the two white guys beat down the black guy with a golf club. Celebrate diversity indeed.
Commercial Don’t do drugs or you’ll lose your sister at the carnival. Lucky for me my sister’s 35 and can find her own way home.
Edge and Lita come out to promote next week’s Ladder Match between Edge and Matt Hardy on the USA Network’s Homecoming special. Lita’s wearing a neck brace, which still doesn’t prevent her from looking like a slut. Or talking like an idiot, as she offers to “go out on a whim” about the upcoming match. Speaking of idiots, Edge climbs to the top of the ladder and starts talking about how next week he’ll become a “career-killer.” Other things Edge kills: my enthusiasm for his character. Matt sneaks out and tips Edge off the ladder. As Lita backs up the ramp, Matt mimes climbing the ladder and opening the briefcase. Sadly, it’s the best promo he’s ever delivered.
“You’re getting sleepy…very sleepy.”
Eric Bischoff is interrupted backstage by Teddy Long, general manager of Smackdown! For a change, Teddy doesn’t want a match for Rodney Mack; instead, he just wants to holla at playas. Hollahollaholla! Can you feel that? Here’s something else Teddy would like Eric to feel: a Smackdown! match at next week’s Homecoming special on USA. Of course, Eric says no, only to have Vince come in and overrule him. After Teddy leaves, Eric tries to get out of his match against Cena next week on USA’s Homecoming special. Instead of letting him out of the match, Vince channels Martha Stewart, reminding Eric he’s one ruthless son-of-a-bitch. “And that’s a good thing. That’s a very good thing.” He then shows Eric how to make proper crÃƒÂ¨me brulee and a toothbrush shiv.
(5) Val Venis and Big Vis defeat Cade and Murdoch via DQ Val’s wearing green trunks, while Vis is wearing a green muumuu. Cade is wearing black tights, while Murdoch is dressed as Larry the Cable Guy. It’s the Porn Star and the Lover versus the Redneck and the Rapist! (Yes, I know in many states that last combination is redundant.) The highlight of this match is a sign in the crowd: Hide your sheep — It’s Murdoch!
Carlito and Chris Masters are discussing their TexasTornadoTagTeamTablesMatch against John Cena and HBK later that night. Masters keeps asking Carlito to speak English, which only makes Carlito more unintelligible. Turns out he’s afraid of getting splinters if he goes through a table. That’s not cool. “No problem,” Masters assures him. “We just need a ‘Master Plan’…” Get it? Cuz his name is “Masters”? Man, I bet Spike is sad to see RAW leaving for the USA Network…
(6) Rob Conway pins Eugene He also ripped off the head of Eugene’s stuffed animal before hitting Eugene with the Ego-Trip. Lesson? You do not touch the Con-Way’s sunglasses. Also, do not look directly at his glowing orange body, as permanent eye damage, including blindness, can result.
“I know those diamonds are hidden here somewhere!”
(7) Carlito and Chris Masters defeat John Cena and HBK RAW’s final match on Spike TV is the previously mentioned TexasTornadoTagTeamTablesMatch. A Texas Tornado match means all four wrestlers fight at the same time, while the Table aspect means the only way to win is to throw your opponent through a table. During Chris Masters’ intro, Coach tells us in a breathy whisper that Chris Masters will be appearing on next week’s Homecoming special on USA. HBK enters wearing an outfit made entirely of pleather and aluminum can pop-tops. This match is all over the place, and none of it is good. At one point, HBK superkicks the ref, who falls on the table and…cracks it. That’s gotta hurt. A new ref comes in to take his place, which is just silly, since there are no rules or pinfalls in this match and the only way to win is to throw someone through a table. You don’t exactly need a ref to verify that. Anyway, HBK is up on the ropes when Kurt Angle bumrushes the ring and tosses him through a table, ending the match and delivering the win to Masters and Carlito. Cena is about to give Angle an FU through a table when Bischoff smacks him in the nuts. Angle then throws Cena through the table, and Spike’s final broadcast ends with Bischoff holding the title belt above his head.
So am I crazy, or did tonight’s episode just suck balls? And did the constant shout-outs to USA get old? I swear, USA got plugged more often than Jenna Lewis on her “misplaced” honeymoon tape. Seeing as how this is RAW’s last night on Spike TV, I really didn’t expect much. But I still expected more than this. Of course, RAW’s true USA litmus test won’t be next week; with Mick Foley in Piper’s Pit, we know that’s going to be great. Rather, it’s going to be the October 10th broadcast. If it’s anywhere near as bad as tonight’s, I might have to start recapping Monday Night Football.