What the World Was Watching: Monday Night RAW – October 23, 1995

Vince McMahon recaps parts of In Your House 4, noting how WWF Champion Diesel and Bret Hart brawled at the end of the show and how Razor Ramon became a four-time Intercontinental champion.

Vince McMahon and Jerry Lawler are doing commentary and they are live from Brandon, Manitoba, Canada.  According to thehistoryofwwe.com, the tapings drew 2,000 fans.

Opening 20 Man Battle Royal for an Intercontinental Championship Match on Next Week’s RAW:  Owen Hart wins, lasting eliminating Marty Jannetty at 15:54 shown:

Participants in this battle royal include Sid, Henry Godwinn, Marty Jannetty, Fatu, Bob Holly, Barry Horowitz, Skip, Aldo Montoya, Hakushi, Bam Bam Bigelow, Duke Droese, Jean-Pierre LaFitte, Rad Radford, Fatu, King Kong Bundy, Issac Yankem, Kama, Savio Vega, Hunter-Hearst Helmsley, Owen Hart, and the 1-2-3 Kid.  According to thehistoryofwwe.com, Waylon Mercy, Yokozuna, and Razor Ramon were also scheduled for the match but removed before the show, Mercy ostensibly due to injury and Ramon due to the last second booking decision to give him the Intercontinental title at In Your House.  Sid is the last participant to enter and yells at everyone, even getting a promo in the split screen about how he rules the world.  Bundy makes his last appearance for the company here, quickly eliminated by Bigelow, Godwinn, Droese, and Fatu and then things drag out for a while, with Horowitz tossing Skip to maintain the advantage in their latent feud.  Sid is continually hyped as a big winner and would make sense to face Ramon next week, but he is knocked out in the late stages by Bigelow.  Jannetty scores the best elimination of the contest by skinning the cat into the ring and tossing out Savio via a headscissors, but Jannetty is denied a shot at the title after a fun final sequence with Owen as the British Bulldog runs out to beat Jannetty up and help his fellow Camp Cornette member win the title shot.  The battle between Jannetty and Owen was lots of fun but it just took too long to get there.  Rating:  **

Owen Hart tells Jerry Lawler that he is going to beat Razor Ramon for the Intercontinental title on next week’s RAW.

The final moments of the WWF title match between Diesel and the British Bulldog at In Your House 4 are shown.

Dok Hendrix hypes the Survivor Series in the Slam Jam segment.  He announces that interim WWF President Gorilla Monsoon has come up with a “wild card” match where the teams were randomly generated by pulling names out of a hat.  The match will feature Shawn Michaels, Sid, the British Bulldog, and Ahmed Johnson against Dean Douglas, Yokozuna, Owen Hart, and Razor Ramon.  Ahmed cuts a promo establishing himself as a fan favorite by saying that he is going to watch Shawn’s back with Sid and the Bulldog on their team.

Bob Backlund is shown campaigning in the arena despite the fact that the show is in Canada and none of these people can vote in a presidential election.  The WWF has not paid any attention to Backlund’s campaign since the summer so it might as well be dead.

Avatar pins Brian Walsh after a standing splash at 2:33:

This is the debut of Avatar, a gimmick for Al Snow where he comes to the ring with a mask and puts it on before wrestling, with the mask transforming him into a karate fighter.  The idea made very little sense but this match is the reason that it died a quick death as Avatar botches some kicks, an arm drag spot, and nearly falls off the top rope before diving at Walsh on the arena floor.  McMahon cannot disguise his disappointment with the match on commentary, with this marking the second time in two nights that new acts have rough outings in their debuts.

Barry Didinski, who has not been seen in a while, returns to encourage people to buy a Shawn Michaels or Bret Hart cut out figure for $25 (plus $3.95 shipping & handling)!

Alundra Blayze is shown warming up backstage.

Call 1-900-737-4WWF to hear more about what happened between Diesel and Bret Hart at In Your House 4.

WWF Women’s Championship Match:  Alundra Blayze (1-1) defeats Bertha Faye (Champion w/Harvey Wippleman) (3-0) to win the title after a German suplex at 6:41:

The WWF Women’s division has been a joke for much of the year, suffering from a lack of attention and bouts that happen without much build.  For example, Faye defeated Blayze for the title at SummerSlam and has not defended it on television since that time.  The commercial breaks on tonight’s show are ridiculous by this point as a break happens mere minutes into the match – while two happened during the battle royal.  After taking some Faye power moves, Blayze rallies and heel miscommunication allows her to regain the title.  Following the match, Faye chases Wippleman to the locker room, apparently ending their on-screen relationship that was never getting much attention in the first place.  This was better than SummerSlam due to better pacing but these two lacked the same chemistry that Blayze had with Bull Nakano.  This was also the last time that the WWF Women’s title would be defended on RAW for three years.  Rating:  **

Jim Ross interviews Shawn Michaels, who continues the narrative that he was beaten up by thugs in Syracuse, although this time he says there were nine instead of ten.  Michaels says that he has some more tests coming up and he should be back in action within the next week.

Tune in next week to see Razor Ramon defend the Intercontinental title against Owen Hart!  Also, Goldust faces Savio Vega in his television premiere!

The Last Word:  Razor Ramon and Owen Hart should have a good match on next week’s show as they put together a good effort back in January.  Looking back, it would have made sense for Owen to get the Intercontinental title at In Your House 4 since he was not originally booked on that card.  The company would have had to get over the “heel versus heel” aspect of a match against Dean Douglas, but Gorilla Monsoon had already established that he did not care for such things.  An Owen title run could have laid the groundwork for some nice matches to end the year versus the staleness of the division under Ramon’s leadership.  Giving the women’s title back to Blayze made sense for the company’s long-term booking as they dreamed up a program for her against Japanese star Aja Kong, but since the belt was rarely defended fans had little reason to invest in Blayze or any other star fighting for the title.

Monday Night War Rating:  2.2 (vs. 2.6 for Nitro – Harlem Heat vs. Sting & Lex Luger)

Up Next:  WWF Superstars for October 28, 1995!