Scott & JT’s Vintage Vault Refresh: Monday Night Raw 11/21/94

*** Scott & JT’s Vintage Vault Refresh reviews are a chronological look back at WWE PPV and TV history that began with a review of WrestleMania I. The PICs have revisited these events and refreshed all of their fun facts that provide insight into the match, competitors and state of the company as well as their overviews of the match action and opinions and thoughts on the outcomes. In addition, Jeff Jarvis assists in compiling historical information and the Fun Facts in each of the reviews. Also, be sure to leave feedback on the reviews at our Facebook page. Enjoy! ***

Monday Night Raw #87

November 21, 1994 (Taped November 7, 1994)
Fernwood Resort & Country Club
Bushkill, PA
Announcers: Vince McMahon & Jim Cornette

*** As Razor Ramon heads to the ring to open up the show, he is attacked in the aisle by The Teamsters, his opponents at Survivor Series. Shawn Michaels, Diesel, Owen Hart, Jim Neidhart and Jeff Jarrett all mauled him in the aisle until officials broke things up. ***

1) Tatanka defeats Chris Canyon with the Papoose to Go at 4:37

Scott: So this episode was supposed to start with Razor Ramon facing Diesel in a non-title matchup, but the Intercontinental Champion was jumped by the Teamsters, who will be facing the Bad Guys in two days at Survivor Series. So maybe that match will happen later, and instead a member of the Corporation opens with a familiar jobber who looks like he stole tights from El Gigante. Kanyon gets some offense in but the Native American wins. Grade: 1/2*

JT: We are coming at you via videotape this week, again inside the Fernwood Resort, as we are just two days away from the eighth annual Survivor Series! Tensions are running hot and heavy as we close in on the final PPV event of 1994 and Vince McMahon is joined by Jim Cornette this week to help navigate us through the action. And that action started off right away when Razor Ramon was heading to the ring for his match but was jumped by the Teamsters. That pushes his match with Diesel to later in the show. Instead, kicking things off for us now is Tatanka battling Chris Canyon. Tatanka will be leading the Million Dollar Team into action this Wednesday night, battling Lex Luger’s Guts & Glory. Ted DiBiase leads Tatanka out as always and he wasted no time in laying into Canyon as Vince and Cornette talked about Survivor Series and recent happenings that play into Wednesday’s matches. Cornette gets a funny joke about Lord Al Hayes remembering the first Thanksgiving as Vince talks about Tatanka’s ancestors. Vince also discusses last week’s debut of Aldo Montoya and how he rejected DiBiase’s money. Tatanka has done some solid work on improving his heel sneer and overall offensive style. He beats on Canyon for just about he entire match and wins it with the Papoose. Cornette promises Guts ‘N’ Glory will come up short on Wednesday night. Grade: DUD

Fun Fact: On November 20 in the Tokyo Dome in Tokyo, Japan Bull Nakano pinned Alundra Blayze to win theWWF Women’s Championship. Following the match, Blayze was interviewed where she praised Nakano, but indicated she would win the belt back at WrestleMania in America.

2) Adam Bomb defeats Jason Ahrndt with the Atom Smasher at 2:26

Scott: Bomb’s fanbase was called the “Bomb Squad” which actually sounded really cool. The match wasn’t much, but it was announced that last night Alundra Blayze lost the Women’s Championship to Bull NAKANAKANO (doesn’t feel the same without Savage here) in Tokyo. Grade: DUD

JT: We head right back to the ring as Adam Bomb stalks out to the ring to battle Jason Ahrndt in one last tune up for Survivor Series. Despite his summer time face turn, Bomb has still been aimless so hopefully this Survivor Series gig will jump start him a bit. Then again we have been saying that for over a year now. Vince and Cornette talk about everything but this match as Bomb cuts Ahrndt down and beats him around the ring. They also note that over the weekend, Bull Nakano defeated Alundra Blayze for the WWF Women’s Title in Tokyo. Cornette seamlessly works in the USA movie plug for a Planet of the Apes marathon this Friday as Bomb finishes the beating with the Atom Smasher. Grade: DUD

*** Vince McMahon and Jim Cornette demonstrate the new Raw video game with a animated match up between Undertaker and Yokozuna. ***

*** Todd Pettengill narrates a look at the history between Jerry Lawler and Doink the Clown, a feud that will culminate at Survivor Series. After that, Jerry Lawler is in the ring with his Royal Family for this week’s King’s Court. Lawler and his crew talk about their Survivor Series strategy and King makes a bunch of short jokes as well. As they talk, Dink sneaks out and hides under the ring with a water gun. All of the clowns then pops out and spray the King’s crew, causing them to hide behind the throne to dodge the streams. *** 

*** Jim Cornette plugs the Survivor Series hotline and opinion poll. IRS then joins us from a graveyard where he discusses his month long investigation, where he discovered a recently deceased man had attempted to cheat on his taxes. IRS finished this job by repossessing the poor guy’s burial plot so he can pay off his debt. ***

3) Irwin R. Schyster defeats Matt Hardy with the Write Off at 2:52

Scott: I know on past reviews that I thought there was too much old guard taking up the card, but there are two examples of how the old guard is really helping out. One is Bob Backlund (mostly because the heel turn has been awesome) and the other is IRS. His cemetery vignettes have been great which is obviously leading to Undertaker’s next feud. Matt Hardy is getting some offense in here, more than I thought. Vince announces some WWF superstars (including Doink and those dirty little clowns) are in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade. IRS wins. Grade: DUD

JT: We head back down to the ring as Ted DiBIase is back on the scene, leading IRS out to the ring for a match with Matt Hardy. IRS reminds us that everyone pays their taxes and won’t rest in peace until they do. Vince is talking about Thanksgiving, Survivor Series and some world news as Irwin picks apart Hardy. Vince then plugs the large WWF contingent that will be in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on Thursday. That is a quick turnaround from their stop in San Antonio on Wednesday. IRS nabs the win with the Write Off. Grade: DUD

*** Todd Pettengill is in the house with our final Survivor Series Report before the big night in San Antonio, which is just two days away now. Todd runs down the complete card:

Bret Hart w/ British Bulldog vs. Bob Backlund w/ Owen Hart – WWF Title Submission Match
Undertaker vs. Yokozuna – Casket Match w/ Special Enforcer Chuck Norris

Guts ‘N’ Glory: Lex Luger, Adam Bomb, Mabel & The Smoking Gunns vs. The Million Dollar Team: Tatanka, Bam Bam Bigelow, King Kong Bundy & The Heavenly Bodies
The Bad Guys: Razor Ramon, 1-2-3 Kid, British Bulldog & The New Headshrinkers vs. The Teamsters: Diesel, Shawn Michaels, Jim Neidhart, Owen Hart & Jeff Jarrett
Clowns ‘R’ Us: Doink, Dink, Wink & Pink vs. The Royal Family: Jerry Lawler, Queazy, Cheesy & Sleazy

There you have it! Get that call into your cable company right now because time is running short. It is the final PPV of 1994 so don’t miss out! ***

4) Razor Ramon and Diesel wrestle to a double disqualification at 11:00; Ramon retains WWF Intercontinental Title

Scott: This episode is kind of a flip from the normal routine, with the competitive match at the end instead of at the beginning. This is the rubber match between the two, with Diesel winning the first one back in April to win the IC title, then Razor winning the belt back at SummerSlam. Both guys’ Survivor Series teams are at ringside, including Diesel’s tag team partner Shawn Michaels, who twice as “accidentally” superkicked Diesel in two matches. In fact, Vince is starting to plant the seeds by saying Diesel is a better “partner” to Shawn than vice-versa. Diesel is also carrying himself very differently than before, eschewing the cliche heel mannerisms and acting very, well cool. On an aesthetic note, Razor is wearing black for the first time in a while. His basic color is usually purple, with the other colors as alternates. The match has been a fun battle with Diesel working the champion over with power moves and Cornette is adding great commentary, really talking up the match and the analysis of how the Survivor matches would go. Better than Lawler at this point, but not better than Savage was. Of course Savage was a babyface too so it’s apples and oranges. Grade: **

JT: It is time for our final match of the night and it will be the title bout we were supposed to open the show with. Of course, a brawl in the aisle delayed us but here we are. Diesel heads to the ring, flanked by his full Teamsters squad. Vince reminds us that Shawn Michaels cost Diesel the IC Title at SummerSlam but Cornette says the series is tied 1-1 and this is the rubber match. After a break, Razor Ramon saunters out and to ensure everything stays even, he has the Bad Guys team with him. Razor charges into the ring and brings the fight right at Diesel to kick things off. He slugs away at the challenger and then wipes out a few Teamsters that hopped on the apron as well. The champ worked the arm until Diesel broke free and leveled Razor with a champ to the gut. Big Daddy Cool hammered away, using his power offense to maintain control and cut off comeback attempts. Diesel hooked on a neck vise as Cornette talks about all the credit Michaels deserves for his work with his former bodyguard and keeping the team unified. Vince disagrees and says Diesel is the real peacemaker of the Teamsters. Razor busts up a side headlock with a back suplex but Diesel dodges a charge and sends Ramon flying to the floor as we head to break. After the commercial, Razor was starting to mount a comeback but Michaels tripped him up and allowed Diesel to clobber him from behind. The Bad Guys came over and we got a big stare down between the teams, which allowed Ramon to drill Diesel from behind and take control of the match. However, Diesel came right back with a knee lift and sidewalk slam for two. Diesel focused on the back, punishing it with targeted strikes, but was unable to put the champ away. Ramon would thwart the Jackknife and come out firing with right hands and a big slam. Jeff Jarrett hopped on the apron but Ramon blasted him with a right hand and yanked him into the ring. As Ramon went for the Razor’s Edge, Owen Hart got involved, triggered a big brawl and the bell to end the match. The brawl continues as the show ends. This was just kind of there, nowhere near as good as their SummerSlam battle, mainly thanks to a slower pace and the focus being on the eight guys around the ring. t was interesting that McMahon kept bringing up Shawn costing Diesel the title in Chicago and how Diesel had issues with his teammates on Action Zone yesterday, perhaps foreshadowing trouble to come. This was a fine sell for the Survivor Series match and not much more beyond that. Grade: *1/2

Final Analysis

Scott: The PPV got a solid sell but otherwise not much going on there. The IC Title match was fun but below expectations, and I am totally finished with Doink and all these stupid midgets running around everywhere. After a red hot first eight months of the year, I feel like the product is sagging a bit post SummerSlam. Sure we have a PPV coming up but it doesn’t have that real feel that the Rumble, Mania, KOTR & SummerSlam had. Let’s hope this show delivers like those did. Final Grade: C-

JT: After a whole lot of anticipation, Survivor Series is finally upon us. They did a fine job of really giving the PPV one last hard sell but beyond that there wasn’t much else here at all. The big IC Title match was kind of bland and really only existed to set up the brawl between teams. I have had my fill of the clowns vs. kings nonsense and am hopeful that shit goes away after Survivor Series. Other than that, it was just a lot of Thanksgiving Eve hype, which of course makes sense but doesn’t make for too exciting of a show on its own. Final Grade: C