Monday Night Raw – October 11, 2004

Monday Night Raw
Date: October 11, 2004
Location: Evening News Arena, Manchester, England
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler

Somehow this is the first time the show has ever taken place in England. We’re eight days away from Taboo Tuesday, the show that half the roster seems to hate. I’m not exactly wild on it myself given how the build has gone, but I’m sure this week’s show will end with HHH taking a beating but walking out as champion anyway. Let’s get to it.

Opening sequence.

Women’s Title: Stacy Keibler vs. Trish Stratus

Trish is defending and Stacy is in a Manchester United jersey (with her name spelled Kiebler on the back) with a barely existent skirt. Of course we get the early cartwheel and the boot choke in the corner because that’s all Stacy is good for in something like this. A rollup out of the corner gives us yet another upskirt shot before Trish bails out to the floor.

The champ is smart enough to pull Stacy down and crotch her against the post, followed by wrapping the leg around the post. A half crab keeps Stacy in trouble until she makes a slow crawl to the ropes. Trish gets slammed off the top for two but she gets bored with this mess and hits the Chick Kick to retain.

Rating: D-. Yeah Stacy has long legs and wears revealing outfits. That’s the extent of her talents here it was on full display here (among other things). I get the point of the whole thing but that doesn’t make it a good idea. These are the kind of matches that WWE has gotten away from thanks to the Women’s Revolution, but the history isn’t kind to them.

Post match Molly Holly, Nidia, Gail Kim and Victoria run in for the brawling. I’m sure Taboo Tuesday waits for all of them.

Simon System ad. These are still worth a chuckle.

Tag Team Titles: William Regal/Eugene vs. La Resistance

La Resistance is defending and insult the British fans, who aren’t worthy of hearing the French national anthem. You can imagine the pop Regal gets and carrying the Union Jack makes it even louder. Why the challengers have generic music instead of either of their themes isn’t clear but maybe it’s some international copyright deal?

Regal and Conway start things off with the fans cheering Regal for just breathing, let alone actually doing anything of note. An exchange of forearms to go Regal and I don’t remember the last time I’ve heard a crowd this invested. Eugene comes in with Grenier loaded up in Shattered Dreams position and the Conway goes head first between his legs. The airplane spin makes it even worse for Conway as the fans already want Regal again.

That’s exactly what they get when Conway spends too much time nipping up, allowing Regal to come in for a t-bone suplex. The champs fight back with Au Revoir for two with Eugene making a save. A Stunner takes Conway down so Grenier brings in the title belt, only to walk into the Power of the Punch for the pin and the titles. Regal looks happier than I’ve ever seen him.

And never mind as we come back from a break with Eric Bischoff having restarted the match, earning a loud BULL**** chant from the crowd as Eugene is fighting out of an armbar. The shoulder is sent into the buckle and it’s back to Grenier for some stomping. Conway comes in to tell Eugene to fight like a man and, after drawing Regal in for some double teaming, walks into a collision with Eugene for the hot tag to Regal

Everything breaks down with Regal throwing suplexes for two, with Grenier hitting Conway for a save as Regal had already moved. A Rock Bottom into a People’s Elbow (with Eugene telling Regal to drop the actual elbow) gets two but a flag pole shot to Regal is enough for the pin (with trunks) to retain.

Rating: D. Well, that was stupid. There was little reason to change the title win like that when you could just turn it right back the next week with nothing having been significantly changed. WWE likes to go way too far with these gotcha moments and they’re really annoying when you had a great moment like this.

Taboo Tuesday ad.

British fans are happy to have Raw.

La Resistance is happy but Bischoff isn’t, because that wasn’t enough punishment to Eugene. Therefore, they can defend the titles against the two who don’t face HHH for the World Title. Doesn’t Bischoff hate the three people who could face HHH? And…actually never mind as this is quicksand.

Ric Flair and Batista try to calm HHH down about the fan vote. They’ve got HHH’s back and front.

Video on Kane/Lita/Gene Snitsky. The melodrama is strong on this show, though they’re doing a nice job of making Snitsky a star overnight.

Snitsky joins us via satellite from Connecticut. Last week’s attack on Kane wasn’t his fault because Kane is the bloodthirsty monster attacking him. Was Snitsky just supposed to take it or should he have made a preemptive strike? Snitsky: “Kane said I was a dead man. Well Kane, the only thing dead around here is your baby.” WOW. Anyway he’ll win at Taboo Tuesday and crying like a baby, which Snitsky imitates, complete with a rocking motion. How is this guy not World Champion yet?

Hurricane/Rosey vs. Val Venis/Stevie Richards

Or not as Kane comes out and beats up all four of them with a chair. Venis gets taken out on a stretcher.

Here’s Randy Orton for a chat about his mixed emotions over this upcoming match with Flair. Yeah Flair is a legend, but he’s one of the people who cost Orton the World Title. Based on that, Orton has to get even but if you look at Flair, you have to feel pity. That’s not the Flair Orton wants though. He wants the legendary Flair, so here’s Ric to a roar. Flair heard Orton say he felt sorry for him but Flair rode up in a long limousine earlier today and a man asked him how to spell his name.

That would be f-a-m-o-u-s, which is what Flair is. He sees Orton showing off in a custom made suit with a Rolex watch but Flair invented being the man. Flair brags about all the women he’s had before talking about how great Orton has already been. He’s no legend killer though because Flair is still right here. Flair is so sure that he’s going to win that if Orton pulls the miracle, he’ll throw in the limo and some women. Orton turns them down because he has his own but he’ll win anyway. This was promos 201, but it’s not like this is anything more than a pit stop as we build towards the next Orton vs. HHH title match.

Lawler is with the Page 3 girls and looks at some of their pictures (off camera of course). This was what it was.

Chris Jericho vs. Rhyno

Fallout from last week’s lumberjack match with Rhyno costing Jericho the win. Rhyno grabs a headlock to start as the announcers try to find a way to sell Jericho facing one of fifteen people at Taboo Tuesday. The fans are behind Jericho as Rhyno cranks on the arm but Jericho fights out of the corner. A headbutt to the arm puts Rhyno in control again though and we hit a chinlock. A spinebuster takes Jericho down for two but he’s right back with the bulldog. The Lionsault hits knees and it’s time for the Gore, which is cut off by Christian and Tyson Tomko for the DQ.

Rating: D+. The chinlock hurt things but these two always worked fairly well together. The match was fairly slow with Rhyno dominating for the most part, which worked well enough as a way to make him seem like a threat for the title shot. I mean, he has no chance of winning the poll, but at least they’re trying.

Post match Jericho gets beaten down but here’s Coach to announce that we’re not done.

Rhyno/Chris Jericho vs. Christian/Tyson Tomko

Joined in progress with Rhyno running Christian over and handing it off to Jericho for a suplex. Rhyno adds a slam as the announcers recap the show so far. Well what else are they supposed to talk about in a match like this? Tomko shoves Rhyno off the top for a crash to the floor and it’s back to Christian for a chinlock.

Just like in the previous tag match, Christian draws Jericho in and starts with the double teaming (it’s a classic move and still works every time). Christian talks too much trash (a common theme as of late) and gets belly to bellied so Rhyno can bring Jericho back in. The springboard dropkick puts Christian on the floor and it’s a Gore to Tomko, setting up the Lionsault for the pin.

Rating: C-. Somewhat better than the singles version which is probably due to getting more time. Jericho getting the fall seems a bit counterproductive, but then again so does most of everything they’re doing with Taboo Tuesday. I’m hoping we don’t get another Christian vs. Jericho match but I don’t think the fans will go that way, which is quite the relief after watching them feud for so long.

Post match Christian hits Rhyno in the face with the Intercontinental Title but walks into the Walls. Batista makes the save and takes out Jericho before posing with the belt.

Shawn Michaels comes up to Chris Benoit and promises to do what’s best for himself in the main event tonight. Benoit isn’t surprised and promised to do the same thing tonight. Edge comes in and doesn’t like being left out, though Shawn and Benoit don’t seem to care.

Smackdown Rebound.

JR gets serious to talk about John Cena getting stabbed in a nightclub after Smackdown, leaving him in a medical facility. Lawler instantly transitions into a discussion of the Diva Search girls fighting at Taboo Tuesday. From STABBING to an eye candy feud. Such is life in 2004.

We recap Carmella vs. Christy, setting up their match at the pay per view.

Taboo Tuesday voting begins next Monday night at 10pm. They’re cutting it pretty close with the timing.

Taboo Tuesday rundown. The six women from earlier plus Jazz will be in a battle royal and you get to pick their outfits.

More British fans are happy to be here.

Evolution vs. Shawn Michaels/Chris Jericho/Edge

Benoit and Batista start things off with Benoit slugging away as you had to expect him to do. The Sharpshooter is easily kicked away and it’s off to Edge for some staring. The fans really don’t like Edge as he forearms away at Batista and shoulders him out to the floor. Back in and Shawn chops away with less success, allowing Flair to come in for a collective WOO. Since Shawn can’t hang with an old man, Benoit comes in and fires off chops in the corner.

That means a Flair Flop and everything breaks down with the good guys all slapping on Figure Fours for a nice visual. Back from a break with Benoit in trouble as Evolution takes turns working on his back with a variety of forearms. HHH hits a British Bulldog style delayed vertical suplex for two and it’s back to Flair, who still gets a nice reception.

Some right hands in the corner keep Benoit in trouble and it’s back to Batista as a fan runs in with Shawn and Edge diving on him with no trouble. Flair kicks Benoit low and puts on the Figure Four as the fans watch/sing to the fan being ejected. Benoit starts to turn the hold over so Flair tags Batista as it’s reversed in a smart move.

An enziguri drops Batista and it’s off to Shawn vs. HHH for old times’ sake. Everything breaks down and it’s a facebuster to Shawn but it’s too early for the Pedigree. Instead it’s a backdrop for the counter, setting up Benoit’s Swan Dive. Edge tags himself in to break up Sweet Chin Music though, leaving Shawn to have to superkick HHH to break up the Pedigree. That’s enough for Edge to steal the pin in a real jerk move.

Rating: B-. These six can do any combination of matches/tag matches for years to more than acceptable results and that’s what they did here. It was another good match but the ending was a bit annoying as we continue to drag through the muck towards Taboo Tuesday. It made sense and is something Edge (suddenly a heel again) should be doing, but it’s still quite the annoying story as it would take a minor miracle for anyone but Shawn to get the shot.

Post match Edge said he told them what he was going to do. A vote for Shawn or a vote for Benoit is a vote wasted, which doesn’t sit well with either of them. Shawn does an informal poll of his own with Edge getting booed, Benoit getting a nice reaction and Shawn getting…well speared actually. Bischoff comes out and announces a triple threat for next week. Edge spears Benoit to end the show.

Overall Rating: D+. Pretty good main event aside, do you know who is coming off the best on these shows? Snitsky. He’s one of the only people who doesn’t have some kind of a swerve or a stupid move in most of his segments and they aren’t exactly hammering in what they want the fans to vote for at the show.

Taboo Tuesday is screaming REALLY BAD IDEA more and more every week and this was no exception, with HHH worrying about who he has to face, Orton in an acceptable yet not exactly thrilling feud with Flair (though the promos are good) and Jericho facing a field. It’s making it hard to build towards the show and the problem gets worse by the week.

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