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WWF Monday Night RAW - November 18, 1996
by erick von erich

What the HECK?/Intro
So let's look at this episode of Monday Night RAW. It's part of the WWE 24/7 "Monday Night Wars" episodes, coupled with WCW Monday Nitro. But since I have pretty good recall of all the old Nitros, I thought I'd recap something I've never seen. The hosts are Vince McMahon, Jim Ross and Jerry "the King" Lawler. This episode originally aired the night after the 1996 Survivor Series; when such momunental events occurred- like Sycho Sid winning the championship and Flash Funk debutting! But with so much going on in the WWF, let's get down to ringside for...

Match 1: "Stone Cold" Steve Austin vs. Mankind (w/Paul Bearer)
In what would become a staple of Monday Night RAW in the late 90's, as soon as the telecasts begins, Steve Austin's music plays. Austin takes his time jawing with the crowd, allowing Mankind to attack him from behind in the aisle. They brawl back to the giant RAW sing with various degrees of "hammering away" (tm, Vince Mc Mahon) on each other. This goes on for almost five minutes, as they fight around ringside. Philo Beddoe vs. Jack Wilson in Jackson's Hole, it sure as hell ain't. Mankind tosses Austin into the steps and we see a glimpse of some dude in the front row, sporting a luchador mask and an Ace Frehley shirt! Betcha' that guy never thought he'd be my Highspot of the Match over 10 years later. They (the wrestlers, that is) FINALLY make it into the ring, where Austin....stomps. With Mankind's head sitting on the apron, Austin drops an elbow on him. Back outside again and Austin gets to meet the other set of steps. They roll back in, where Makind...chokes. Austin gets up and hits a charging clothesline and yup, Mankind rolls out, again. This time he grabs a chair, but the ref is out to confiscate it. Austin whips Mankind into the railing and in an painfully ugly exposure of pro wrestling, Makind leaps and spins himself over the railing. After another four minutes of so, they finaly decide to get back in the ring. This time, makind suplexes Austin in from the railing, nails a swinging neck-breaker and a legdrop. Austin tries to hook a sleeper, but Mankind backs him into the corner. Makind sets up for a piledrive,r but Austin backdrops him over the top rope and onto the apron. Mankind bulldogs Austin on the top rope and tries to follow up with a fat-assed top turnbuckle attack. Austin pulls him down, stomps and throws him outside AGAIN. This time, Austin gets some payback by tossing Mankind into the steps and dropping him on the railing. Back into the ring and Austin shoulderblocks Mankind into the corner. Mankind acts like he just shit himself, slouches in the corner and starts to ooze out of the ring again. That's enough to cue the run-in from the Executioner (Terry Gordy in a mask). I didn't think it was possible to make Terry Gordy appear any uglier, but the mask did the job well. Bell sounds for the Austin DQ win and the beat-down in on. This brings out the Undertaker to clear the ring. As the bad guys split, Austin sneaks up from behind and clotheslines Taker over the top. Taker gets to his feet and stares Austin into making a slow retreat. Shitty match, but get used to it...'cuz these three clowns (Austin, Mankind and Taker) would dominate RAW for the next six or seven years.

Video hype and clips of last night's Survivor Series, focussing on the matches between Psycho Sid vs. Shawn Michaels and Steve Austin vs. Bret Hart. Plus, a quick clip of entrances from Flash Funk and Jimmy Snuka! Buy the encore now!

But wait fans, what's this?! Ahmed Johnson is all up in your audience!. Ahmed walks out of the concourse and takes a seat about 30 rows up.

But waitaminut, what's THIS?! Sunny's music hit and she skips down to the ring to introduce the netx match. I was never a big fan of her's (i.e: didn't jerk off to her pictures on AOL), but her knee-high leather boots look kinda' nice. I think she definitely benefitted from the "Desert Island Syndrome"-- at the time, there were not many women in pro wrestling, so when a single, normal looking chick appears, she suddenly seems ultra-hot. Anyways, she's out there to introduce the next...introduction.

Here's that introduction that Sunny introduced (Austin Powers would be proud): two white rappers who bring out Farooq, head of the new Nation of Domination. Not sure who these two guys were, but I think they were the tag-team PG-13. Clarence Mason is also in tow as Farooq's new manager. Farooq definitely has that Jim Brown, circa 1977, look down. Sunny joins the commentary crew for all this and yes, there's a reason she's there. Sunny was Farooq's old manager, so this acts as sort of a "passing of the Farooq" from Sunny to Mason.

Match 2: Farooq vs. Savio Vega
Man, give Savio a macaaw and he's the mid-90's version of Koko B. Ware. Farooq clubs away, then misses a charge into the corner. Savio follows-up with a hip-toss, drop-kick and hops in the corner for 10, yes, 10 vunderful punches! Ah-ah-ah-ah! Savio sends Farooq to the oposite corner for a monkeyflip, errr... a flip with the legs (have to watch the rascist wording, dontcha' know). Farooq gets a Shemp Stooge Eye-boink to take over. Big spinebuster gets 2, followed up with a snap suplex. Farooq with a bell-to-back suplex and hooks a chinlock for the conveinent commercial break. Back from break, Savio tries a splash, but Farooq blocks with the knees. Quick desperation small package by Svaio gets 2. Savio gets a quick face-jam bulldog, slams Farooq, but misses an elbowdrop. Farooq pounds away for a bit, then jumps up on the top turnbuckle. Savio is up to meet him and shake the ropes. It looks like Savio tries a super-plex, but both guys grab each other and tumble off the corner onto the floor. They quickly hop back and Savio lands a spinning heel-kick (hmm, when Savio becomes a heel, does that move then become a spinning FACE-kick? *rimshot*). Savio tries to charge, but Farooq ducks and Savio ends up out of the floor. Farooq distracts the ref while the two white rappers blast Savio with a two-by-four and roll him back in. Farooq is over to get the 3 count victory. Almost instantly, Ahmed Johnson runs out of the audience, steals the lumber and cleas the ring! Ahmed gets the house mic and shouts Fightin' Words at Farooq. Ahemed cites his five-month injury suffered at the hands of Farooq and gets the crowd to chant: "You're! Going! Down!" (smarks: insert your Lita joke HERE).

Milton-Bradley's Karate Fighters Holiday Tournament
A promtional piece where wrest, errr, SUPERSTARS faced off against each other with the "Karate Fighters" toys, errr.. game. Whatever. It looks like a shitty version of Rock 'em, Sock 'em Robots...you just flail on some buttons until one person's figure goes flying off. That's the plot of this week's "match", as Sunny bests Mr. Bob Backlund. Backlund drops some hefty Warrior-worthy words like "conmove". The more I see of Backlund, the more I'm beginning to dig the guy.

But now fans, standing by in the lockeroom and doing curls in front of Jim Ross, it's the NEW WWF Champion Psycho Sid! We'll get to him later.

Back at ringside, Vince and Jerry Lawler narrate some stills of last night's Survivor Series. Vince performs a verbal on-air blowjob about how wonderful Shawn Michaels is.

Match 3: Doug Furnas & Phillip LaFon vs. Bob "Sparkplug" Holly & Leif Cassidy
Weird pairing on the second team. I'm guessing Holly is a sub and that it was supposed to be the New Rockers... but Marty Janetty probably had another relapse of "being fired" that particular week. Captain Lou Albano joins the commentary team. TheSpanish commentary team that is. Umm... okay. Cassidy and LaFon start off with some knucklelock dancing, which Cassidy twists into a hammerlock. LaFon connects with a reverse thurstkick and blocks Cassidy's suplex attempt, taking it to the mat with an armbar. Cassidy hooks a head scissors to counter. LaFon works it into a waistlock and Cassidy bridges out. Tag out to each partner and they try their own waistlock shenanigans. An inset promo flies in from the British Bulldog and Owen Hart. They don't like these fellers. Criss-cross action and Furnas gets two armdrags and a belly-to-belly suplex on Cassidy. LaFon comes in for some more reverse kicks and gets a 2 count. LaFon puts his head down and gets beaned. Holly comes in with an Alabama Crappy Drop-kick, an Alabama Shitty Slam and misses an Alabama Elbow-drop. Furnas returns to adminster a dropkick and a frankensteiner for 2. Vince seems a little leery to call that last move. Both guys tag-off and Cassidy hits a full-nelson suplex on LaFon for 2. Cassidy tries again, but LaFon reverses into his own version of the move. Only difference is that LaFon used a cobra-clutch instead of a full-nelson. That's enough for LaFon to get the pinfall victory. Not a bad match when Cassidy was in, but the crowd was absolutely dead and decomposing.

A Very Special In-Ring Interview with Sycho Sid
Jim Ross greets Sid in the ring for a rambling interview. Sid throws out threats to Shawn Michaels and Bret Hart. Sid says to Hart, "well, you wrestling comeback will come to an end, Brett-man". Sid says he's the master and ruler of the world (is he a sci-fi villain?). Fireworks go off to celebrate this tremendous interview. Fans, that's all the time we have for this week!

Why'd You Tape This??
I watch these old show simply because I had never seen them. The wrestling isn't anyting exciting. 3 turd tacos. It's basically some matches and a buncha' hype. It's interesting to sit down and breeze through these shows to see how the WWF was developing at the time. I'm always amazed that some people were actually following this gibberish. Plus, it's frickin' hilarious to see some grown men in the audience, dressing up like Shawn Michaels (or wearing luchador masks and Ace Frehley shirts).

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