*** 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 #22
June 21, 1993
Mid-Hudson Civic Center
Announcers: Vince McMahon, Randy Savage & Bobby Heenan
1) Steiner Brothers defeat Reno Riggins & Barry Hardy when Scott pins Riggins with the Frankensteiner at 3:51
Fun Fact: On June 19 at a house show in St. Louis, the Steiners defeated Money Inc. to regain the WWF Tag Team Championships. Scott Steiner pinned Ted DiBiase after hitting him with the Frankensteiner for the victory.
Scott: We have major news as Rick and Scott come through the curtain, and that they are the NEW Tag Team Champions after beating Money, Inc the Saturday before in St. Louis. It was only a matter of time before the belts would switch and these guys would be at the top of the mountain. Now that they’re the champions they will be stiffer than ever in the ring and sure enough these bums (even the iconic Reno Riggins) are taking a pretty rough beating from the champs. The best thing about their squashes is that they are much longer than a typical beating. The champs win and the crowd loves it. I enjoy the Raws in Poughkeepsie because the crowd is bigger and considerably louder than the Manhattan Center, which at times seems tired when there’s tapings. Grade: *
JT: We once again shift outside the Manhattan Center for a live edition of Raw, with this installment coming at us from our home away from home in Poughkeepsie. We also open with big time news as the Steiner Brothers arrive for their match with the WWF Tag Team Titles around their waists. Without much of a feud really unfolding and still moths away from SummerSlam, the company hopped on the hot Steiners and tossed the straps on them on a house show. I wonder why they didn’t just do the switch at KOTR or even on Raw? They saw the excitement that could unfold with a big Raw title change just a month earlier. They still seem stuck between the old school way of doing things and really taking advantage of this new world they have built. So, the new champs get to battle a dream jobber team in their first televised match as champs and they quickly take care of business as usual. Scott toyed with Riggins a little early on but that was short lived of course. Riggins was able to escape and tag in Hardy, whose night didn’t go much better. After an Oklahoma Stampede from Rick and some battering from Scott, Hardy was able to make the tag to Riggins, who ate a belly-to-belly suplex and a brutally botched Frankensteiner to close things out. That could have ended really poorly for Reno. Ouch. Grade: 1/2*
2) Marty Jannetty defeats Doink the Clown in a Best of Three Falls Match at 20:38
Doink pins Jannetty with the Whoopie Cushion at 7:16
Jannetty pins pins Doink with the flying forearm at 14:38
Jannetty via disqualification at 20:38
Fun Fact: Last week on Raw, Jannetty and Doink wrestled to a double count out during their qualifying match. Following the match, referees had to come to ringside to pull the competitors apart. This sets up a rematch here tonight in a best 2 out of 3 match.
Scott: Wow the crowd is way into the other Rocker as he makes the ring for this very anticipated rematch from last week’s Raw. These two had a great match last week with a lot of back and forth action that ended in a double countout schmozz. So on this day we up the ante with two out of three falls bout. The match starts very deliberately with great psychology by Doink, trying to break clean and messing with Marty’s head. They really battle back and forth and Doink (as usual for a heel in this stipulation) gets the first fall. This could be one of the longest matches in Raw history to this point. Marty during the second fall cracks the clown with a stiff thrust kick, then a fist drop off the top rope leads to a three count and a tie 1-1 in the match. Vince, Bobby & Savage are in such symmetry on commentary, it seems like so long ago that Rob Bartlett was butchering the WrestleMania build with his nonsense. Doink almost looks like Matt Borne during the third fall as his makeup is totally off his face during the figure four spot. Doink usually doesn’t wrestle TV matches this long and house show crowds probably can’t see his face unless you’re in the front row. It was perfect for this match to be in this arena with the bigger, hotter crowd than in the canned Manhattan Center crowd. Just as the match really hits the climax, we see the second Doink come down the aisle and hide under the ring. After some more great work, Doink goes under the ring but comes out again. Then when both men hit the deck Doink goes under the ring and the OTHER Doink comes out. His paint isn’t perfect but clearly there’s more makeup on this Doink’s face, plus the wig is a bit ragged. Doink #2 hits the piledriver and gets the final pin. That brings Savage from his seat and drags Doink #1 from under the ring. The referee sees the jig is up and reverses the decision. Marty wins a great match, maybe a top three match in show history to this point. Grade: ***1/2
JT: After their spirited match ended in a double countout last week, Marty Jannetty and Doink are back at it again here, but this time with a best of three falls stip attached to the bout. The crowd was revved up as Jannetty charged to the ring and as the match got under way. Doink played some mind games early but Jannetty didn’t bite initially. The Clown kept baiting him in, and did it in a fairly creepy way, until he finally landed a cheap shot punch and followed up with some chops and a headlock. After a criss cross, Jannetty turned the tide with a monkey flip but Doink went to the hair to cut things short, leading to a reset. Doink would continue to play games and draw Jannetty in but Marty played fire with fire, deeking out the Clown on another criss cross before spiking him to the mat. The Rocker started to work the arm, bearing down on Doink and keeping him on his heels, thwarting reversals and maintaining control of the limb. I love that they are working this bout in a different way than last week due to the stipulation, with slower pacing and more feeling out in the critical first fall. Marty picked up a near fall on another monkey flip as well as a backslide but he made a crucial mistake with a wild charge to the corner that ended with a whiff on hitting Doink and crotching himself as a result. Doink quickly sped to the top and hit the whoopee cushion to grab the first fall.
After a break, Doink wasted no time going right at Jannetty to open the second fall, smothering him with verbal taunts and strikes followed by a double ax off the top and onto Marty, who was keeled over on the floor. As Doink cranked on a chinlock, McMahon ran through all of the pro athletes that were planning to show up on July 4th to attempt to bodyslam Yokozuna. Marty would break free and get a near fall on a roll up before hitting a suplex and a jaw rattling superkick but Doink would be saved by the ropes. A moment later, Jannetty sprinted to the top and hit a big fist drop to tie up the bout at one fall a piece. The crowd loved that.
The third fall started with Jannetty still on fire, landing an atomic drop for a near fall but Doink slid to the floor and yanked Jannetty hard to the mat before wrapping his leg hard across the post. Back inside, the Clown hooked in a figure four in the dead center of the ring. Just when things looked bleak with some damage done, Jannetty shifted the hold over and Doink quick forced a rope break. The hold definitely took a toll as Jannetty hobbled around the ring with Doink hot on his trail, kicking away at the leg before locking in a tight STF. Pretty funny that none of the announcers had a clue as to what the hold was, with each stumbling to describe it. Looking to end the match, Doink slowly climbed to the top but Jannetty popped up and slammed him hard to the mat. Marty did his best to limp through an offensive assault but as he rattled Doink’s head with punches, another Doink snuck underneath the ring. The fans leapt into action, telling Marty to check under the ring. He obliged but Doink took advantage and kicked him in the side of the head. Back inside, Jannetty recovered and hit a dropkick that sent Doink right back to the floor and eventually under the ring. Jannetty was on to the jig and caught the original Doink as he slithered back inside. The Clown again ended up outside and this time he was able to pull the switcharoo, which was obvious thanks to the fresh paint job. Jannetty survived momentarily but eventually the fresh Doink was just too much as he dropped Jannetty with a piledriver for the win. As Doink celebrated, Macho Man leapt into the ring and exposed the carny act, leading to the referee reversing his decision to a big pop from the crowd. Savage and Jannetty stood tall in the ring as the Doinks convalesced outside. That was a pretty good match that had a nice build and some well executed psychology. I also liked the finish too with the double Doinks finally being exposed and bit in the ass as a result. Jannetty has been rock solid on Raw since his return and is a really good addition to the mid card. Grade: ***1/2
3) Mr. Hughes defeats Bobby Who with a sidewalk slam at 3:01
Scott: Mr. Hughes comes out with the Undertaker’s urn after what happened on Superstars a couple of weeks back. It’s amazing how huge a superstar the Undertaker is, and how many times has he been on Raw? Twice in 22 episodes? Mr. Hughes throws his weight around while the guys on commentary are making fun of Bobby Who and the dopey jokes that go with it. Vince pimps all three Porkys movies at the end of the week on USA. I notice today’s RAW announcers don’t shill any of USA’s programming. Why bother. Grade: *
JT: Themis is back as a Raw ring girl and Vince really hypes her up as Mr. Hughes smugly marched to the ring, Undertaker’s urn in hand. Hughes stomped, clobbered… and dropkicked (!) Who before eventually finishing him off with a sidewalk slam. This was all a chance to showcase Hughes while pushing the feud between Undertaker and Wippleman’s crew. And to push the Porkys movies, natch. Grade: DUD
*** Vince McMahon announces that this weekend’s All American Wrestling will take place on the USS Intrepid, which is also revealed as the location of the Yokozuna Bodyslam Challenge on Independence Day. ***
4) Razor Ramon wrestles 1-2-3 Kid to a no contest at 5:31
Fun Fact: Flashback to the 5/17 episode of Raw…The Kid defeated Razor Ramon with a moonsault in a stunning upset. Since that time, Razor had been offering the newly named 1-2-3 Kid money for a rematch, offering $2,500, then $5,000, then $7,500 for the match. After being turned down three times, Ramon raises the amount to $10,000, which Kid finally accepts for the rematch.
Scott: The most anticipated rematch in Raw history to this point has finally arrived. May 17 was the notorious day when the jobber upstart shocked the world and now the Kid has taken the $10,000 and immediately gets two tenuous two counts against the Bad Guy. Then Razor goes to town and just pummels the Kid with power moves, elbows and glorified choke slams. He methodically butchers the kid with a powerslam and a back suplex off the second rope. Razor goes outside to lift up the padding and was going to hit the Razor’s Edge on the concrete but the Kid reverses into a back drop. Kid hits a moonsault, then grabs the bag of money and runs off. He jumps in a car and leaves. Great psychology as he didn’t need the win, but he’ll take the money. Grade: *1/2
JT: And it is officially main event time, and perhaps the most unlikely WWF TV main event match in some time. Just about a month ago, the 1-2-3 Kid made history and shocked the world with a win over Razor Ramon. Since then, the Bad Guy has been obsessed with getting a rematch with the upstart and finally got him to cave when he upped the pot to $10,000. Kid is very trepidatious here, taking his time to climb on the apron and finally engage Ramon. Razor charged at him but Kid ducked and ran him into the buckle before heading to the top to look for a quick finish. Kid would hit a sunset flip off the top for a two count and then land a dropkick and some spin kicks before Ramon caught him on a charge and sent him flying with a fallaway slam. As Ramon hammered Kid and crushed him with a clothesline it looked like his magic had possibly run out. Ramon wrecked Kid with a urinage and then locked in an abdominal stretch, taunting him right back for all the weeks of embarrassment he had been enduring, before hitting a powerslam. Ramon really started to get cocky again as the Kid writhed on the mat. The Bad Guy would hit a back suplex off the middle rope and then shove Kid to the floor where Ramon met him and pulled up the protective mat. Looking to finish the Kid off for good, Ramon tried for a Razor’s Edge but Kid blocked it and back dropped him on the concrete. Again looking to end things in a flash, Kid scurried to the top but slipped and crashed hard to the exposed floor in a nasty bump. He would recover and hit a moonsault inside the ring but this time Ramon kicked out and survived. With the Bad Guy down, Kid unleashed his plan as he grabbed the sack of money and sprinted backstage where he dove into a waiting car and sped away. This storyline continues to be really entertaining and well executed as Ramon keeps getting made to look foolish due to his arrogance with the Kid outsmarting him yet again. Grade: *1/2
*** Razor Ramon returns to ringside and vows that Kid can run but he won’t be able to hide as Razor is after him. ***
Scott: This Raw had three things that make a 1993 Raw episode great: One top flight workrate match, a big storyline rematch, and a Steiner Brothers squash of epic potato proportions. It’s pretty amazing how little we have seen two major stars on Raw to this point: Bret Hart and Undertaker. In terms of real top flight upper mid card/main event guys, probably Shawn Michaels and Yokozuna have been on more than anybody. The Steiners are not only jobber killers but also finally tag team champions, as it’s time for Money Inc to take a step back in the title picture and let fresher teams battle for the gold. The Doink/Marty match was perfect TV fare as both guys really worked their asses off and put on one of the best TV matches of the year. Forget the wig, makeup and gimmicks. Matt Borne is a great wrestler. I’m probably grading this match higher than I should but it was really fun. Final Grade: A-
JT: There is such a different feel when these episodes are live and that was evident here. The announcing is more upbeat and exciting, the crowds are fresher and shit is happening. We have new tag team champions, Razor Ramon is still filled with rage at the Kid and Mr. Hughes is gloating about putting the Undertaker out of action. Sandwiched into all the storyline developments was a real hot match between Marty Jannetty and Doink. The Clown as been a real workhorse on Raw in 1993 and since his return, Jannetty has been as well. We have seen some real good matches since episode one, but this was right up there with any of them. We also didn’t have any fluff on this episode, with no interviews or trips backstage. Just four matches and lots of action and development. It wasn’t the most exciting or memorable episode, but it was very effective. We are officially gearing up for he build to SummerSlam but first we have a very interesting detour with the Bodyslam Challenge, coming in just two weeks time. Final Grade: B