The SmarK Rant for the Monday Night War – 09.18.95

(Okey doke, here’s the September 18 1995 head-to-head version of RAW and Nitro, written in 2008ish from WWE 24/7, before we go to back to reposting the individual RAW and Nitro rants from the WWE Network again.)

The SmarK 24/7 Rant for The Monday Night Wars – September 18 1995

WCW Monday Nitro!

– Live from Johnson City, Tennessee

– Your hosts are Uncle Eric, Mongo and the Brain.

Meanwhile, the Giant and Kevin Sullivan arrive in the back of an ambulance and Giant cuts a stupid promo.  But then he was new to the sport at that point.  Gene tells him that “his father would be ashamed if he was alive”.  So Big Bossman killed Andre the Giant?

The American Males v. The Bluebloods

Sadly, Harlem Heat destroys the Bluebloods and thus prevents us from seeing this classic.  So instead Booker offers the Males a shot at greatness right now.

WCW World tag titles:  Harlem Heat v. The American Males

Brawl to start, and if you’re in a dark alley god knows there’s no one better suited to watch your back than Scotty Riggs or Buff Bagwell.  Riggs evades Ray and the Males hit a double-dropkick on him.  “Double your pleasure, double your fun” quoth Eric Bischoff.  How did he ever get a job as an announcer, let alone running the company?  Bagwell hits a flying forearm, but Booker overpowers him and adds a powerslam.  Legdrop misses, but Riggs comes in and walks into the axe kick.  Eric goes for the street cred by comparing the kick to K1 competitions.  I’m pretty sure guys don’t stand there with their head bowed in position for 10 seconds in legitimate kickboxing matches.  Riggs comes back with a sunset flip on Booker, but Stevie breaks it up and the double-teaming in the Heat corner continues.  Riggs manages to make the hot tag to Bagwell and he hits a bunch of dropkicks, but now Col Parker comes out and sweeps Sherri off her feet, while Bagwell gets a fluke cradle on Stevie to win the belts at 4:35.  A world where the American Males are the best tag team isn’t a world I want to live in.  1/2*

Ric Flair (only an 11-time champion at this point) is out for his traditional interview with Mean Gene (although I guess at this point it would be the first one).  AA broke the code of the Horsemen, because it’s OK for them to feud with each other, but if you bring in an outsider, there’s trouble.

Paul Orndorff v. Johnny B. Badd

Orndorff is now extra-narcissistic thanks to his personal motivational speaker.  The announcers go way over the top complaining about the “new attitude”, even though it’s just the same Mr. Wonderful gimmick he’s always had.  Orndorff attacks and chokes away in the corner to start, but Badd hiptosses him and goes up before landing on Paul’s knees.  Orndorff gets two as we take a break.  Back with Badd missing a splash, but so does Orndorff (who “eats a mouthful of mat” in Bischoff-speak).  Orndorff gets dumped as they talk about DDP winning the TV title from Renegade.  Bischoff is sure that Renegade will get another shot.  I…never mind, we won’t go there.  Badd hits the plancha and they head back in for the Badd comeback, but Orndorff blocks a sunset flip for the pin at 3:53.  Not to be a geek about this, but the ref was totally out of position there and Badd’s shoulders were clearly off the mat.  *

Meanwhile on the beach, Randy Savage is pumping iron, but Kevin Sullivan attacks him until Ric Flair and a couple of actors pull him off.  This brings out Savage for an interview on the show and he predicts that Luger will be joining the Dungeon of Doom.  So Luger comes out to refute those awful charges and accuses Savage of wanting the World title himself.  Things gets heated and Savage wants a match, but Mean Gene yells “This isn’t the time or the place!”  Standing in the ring on a wrestling show isn’t the time or the place?  Because it sure sounds like BOTH the time AND the place to me.

Meanwhile, Hulk Hogan gives an interview with Mean Gene on his motorcycle before Fall Brawl, but The Giant and his MONSTER TRUCK OF DOOM drive in and smash the bike while Giant leans out of the truck making faces like a meth-addicted sociopath on a sugar binge.  There’s bad and then there’s fucking hilarious, and this is definitely the latter.

Brian Pillman v. Ric Flair

Pillman misses a dropkick and Flair fires away with chops in the corner and tosses him, and they brawl outside with Flair chopping him against the railing.  Back in the ring, Pillman chokes away and throws his own chops, but we get a Flair Flip and Flair clotheslines him from the apron for a change.  Flair goes up and Pillman dropkicks him on the way down for two.  They brawl outside again and Flair drops him on the railing.  Back in, Pillman tries a sunset flip and Flair blocks it, then catches Pillman with a boot on a blind charge.  Flair goes up and gets slammed off, but then Pillman misses a flying splash.  Flair tries the figure-four and gets cradled for two, and they collide for the double KO.  They chop it out and Flair gets another figure-four for the submission at 5:24.  I guess this was about as good as it could have been for 5 minutes.  **

WWF Monday Night RAW!

– Taped from the same place as last time.

– Your hosts are Vince & King.

The 1-2-3 Kid v. Razor Ramon

Kid sends Ramon to the floor with high kicks, but Ramon puts him on the top rope and brings him down with a fallaway slam.  That gets two.  The canned heat here is just ridiculously bad.  Razor with a hiptoss out of the corner and the Kid bails off a shot to the head.  Back in, Razor works the arm and chokeslams him for two.  Finally Kid takes over when Ramon charges and hits the floor, and Kid follows with a slingshot dropkick to the floor.  Back in, Kid with a leg lariat for two.  Sleeper follows and we take a break.  Back with Kid still holding the move (which would kill you in real life if you were in it that long) but Ramon fights up with a backdrop suplex to escape.  Ramon makes the comeback and slugs Kid down, then follows with a corner clothesline.  The ref gets bumped and of course cue Dean Douglas for the run-in, as he hits a flying splash on Razor and the Kid crawls on top for the pin at 7:08.  Well you know that Ramon is going to bump for his buddy.  ***

Meanwhile, Dean Douglas grades the match.

Tatanka & Kama v. Savio Vega & Bob Holly

Savio gets a hiptoss and dropkicks on Tatanka to start and cleans house (while dancing, no less) and it’s over to Holly and Kama.  Holly takes him down with an armdrag as it’s interesting how completely different that matchup would be just a few years later.  Tatanka comes in and evades a spinkick from Vega, then distracts Holly long enough for Kama to put Vega down with a high kick.  The heels double-team Vega with a double slam and Tatanka drops an elbow before mouthing off to Holly and allowing more double-teaming in the corner.  Kama kicks Savio down and then baits Holly in yet again for more double-teaming as Vince questions which side Holly is on.  Was that supposed to be going anywhere, I wonder?  Tatanka and Savio clothesline each other and it’s hot tag Holly, who goes up with a missile dropkick on Kama for two.  He goes up again with a high cross, but Kama rolls through for the pin at 5:46.  **

Jean Pierre LaFitte v. Brian Walsh

Pierre misses a charge and the jobber tries a headlock, but LaFitte swats down a dropkick and stomps away.  To the apron and LaFitte lays in some stiff shots and hits an overhead suplex back in the ring.  He chokes away and adds a backbreaker, then finishes with the Cannonball at 3:00.  So who would win a match between LaFitte and Avatar?

Yokozuna & Owen Hart v. Men on a Mission

Who booked this crap?  Both teams were heels at this point, which made this all the sillier.  Owen slugs it out with Mo to start and Mo elbows him down, but charges and hits boot in the corner.  Owen comes out with a clothesline, but runs into a powerslam and it’s over to King Mabel.  Mabel misses the charge and Owen slugs away in the corner, but Mabel swats him down and MOM pounds away in their corner.  The crowd seems to be cheering Owen by default, so he takes a cheapshot and plays face-in-peril here. Mabel chokes him out behind the ref’s back, and Mo gets a sunset flip for two.  Owen dumps him and finally brings Yoko in as Owen sends Mo into the stairs.  Back in, Yoko beats the hell out of Mo in the corner and now the champs cheat like the crazy.  Still not enough to draw boos, though.  We take a break and return with Owen and Mo trying stereo leg lariats and missing.  Tags on both sides give us Yoko v. Mabel, and they slug it out to no effect until Mabel gets a clothesline to put Yoko down.  He tosses Owen onto Yoko and MOM hit Yoko with a double clothesline.  Mo slugs away, but Yoko casually clotheslines him and holds him for an Owen missile dropkick that gets two.  Neckbreaker and Owen goes up, but Mo brings him down with a superplex for two.  Owen comes back with a drop toehold into the HULKBUSTER LEGDROP from Yoko, and that’s enough to finish at 9:07.  Pretty fun.  ***

The Verdict:  RAW was dull but with better matches, and Nitro was more unpredictable but with Giant crushing Hogan’s motorcycle with a monster truck.  Guess it depends what you’re looking for in a show.  Call it a draw this time.