We’re heading towards King of the Ring, and things really start to get interesting on Monday Night Raw this month.  Some might even say that it’s uncooked, uncensored, and uncut.  To make things even better, Rob Bartlett is no longer employed by the WWF.  Yes, it wasn’t a dream…we don’t have to listen to his lame jokes anymore.

There are five episodes packed into May, so get ready for an action filled month!

Episode 15 – May 3, 1993

Venue – Manhattan Center (Manhattan, NY)

Matches

“Hacksaw” Jim Duggan def. Shawn Michaels (Intercontinental Title Match)

Raw immediately starts with this big Intercontinental Championship match.  The crowd always gets into “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan matches, and he has them loudly chanting “USA” right away.  Duggan plays to the crowd for a long time, and Michaels wastes time, so it takes a while to actually get this match started.  Vince McMahon is so excited for this match, and the potential of a title changing hands on Monday Night Raw that it sounds like he’s about to pass out.

Much like any other “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan match, it’s not very good, but he keeps the crowd very involved the entire time.  At the end, Shawn Michaels runs away, causing Duggan to win by count out.  Duggan cuts a promo after the match saying that it’s not right that Michaels ran away when he was about to lose.  He says that he’s not leaving until Michaels comes back, and he sits in the ring while the crowd chants “take the belt”.  He eventually does leave though to try to get something worked out.

Doink def. The Kamikaze Kid

Before he was X-Pac, before he was Syxx, and even before he was the 1-2-3 Kid, Sean Waltman was here on Raw as jobber named the Kamikaze Kid.  Things don’t start off so well for his WWF career though, as Doink absolutely crushes him.  He literally doesn’t even get to hit one move.

Doink

Bob Backlund def. Duane Gill

Backlund wins pretty easily.  Vince McMahon announces that “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan will fight Shawn Michaels next week in a lumberjack match. 

The Headshrinkers (with Afa) def. Jim Bell and Jay Sledge

Before the match Howard Finkel brought out Captain Lou Albano, and he sits in on commentary here.  Albano used to manage the Wild Samoans (Afa and Sika) back in the day, so I guess this adds some intrigue about the potential of something happening, but nothing does.  The Headshrinkers taunt Albano before the match, and that’s about it.  It’s a surprisingly long match, but I don’t think that these poor jobbers even get a move off.

Raw Announcers with Captain Lou Albano

Kamala def. Rich Myers

This is just a short squash match, so there’s really not much to say about it.

Promos and Interviews

We get our first King of the Ring report with Mean Gene.  He says that this is first ever King of the Ring tournament, which certainly isn’t true.  It’s the first ever time that it’s been on ppv, but they’ve had King of the Ring tournaments since the mid-’80s.  They’ve started the qualifying matches for the tournament already, and he mentions that Lex Luger has won his qualifying match, while Mr. Perfect and Doink wrestled to a draw.  The actual PPV event will be eight participants in a one night single elimination tournament.  The main event will be a WWF Championship match between Hulk Hogan and Yokozuna.  He also announces El Matador vs. Razor Ramon as a qualifying match on WWF Superstars, and “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan vs. Papa Shango as a qualifying match on Wrestling Challenge.

Once the Intercontinental Championship rematch is announced for next week, Vince McMahon interviews “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan in the ring about it.  At the end of the night, Bobby Heenan quickly interviews Shawn Michaels backstage about it as well.

There’s another ridiculous promo for the debut of the Smoking Gunns.

Smoking Gunns

Episode 16 – May 10, 1993

Venue – Manhattan Center (Manhattan, NY)

Raw starts with a promo from Shawn Michaels outside of the building from earlier in the day.  Mr. Perfect attacks him while he’s talking, and throws him on top of a car.  They brawl until they’re separated, and Bobby Heenan says that Mr. Perfect was paid off by “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan.

Mr. Perfect Throwing Shawn Michaels Onto A Car

Matches

Bam Bam Bigelow def. Typhoon (King of the Ring Qualifying Match)

Bam Bam Bigelow gets a huge cheer from the crowd, as usual, and they start with “Here we go Bam Bam” chants.  This is a really slow match, but the crowd is super into it, and eventually just do “Bam Bam” chants.  Bigelow impressively lifts up Typhoon for a Samoan drop, and beats him with a flying headbutt.  The crowd absolutely loves it.

Yokozuna (with Mr. Fuji) def. PJ Walker

Young Justin Credible looks like he put on some weight since he got squashed by Lex Luger on an earlier episode of Raw, but this time he gets easily destroyed by Yokozuna in a couple of minutes.

Yokozuna Bonzai

Mr. Perfect def. “Iron” Mike Sharpe

Before the match, Mr. Perfect starts flirting with one of the heavyset “Raw girls”, and he grabs her face like he’s about to kiss her, but instead he just throws his gum into her mouth.  She loves it, and the entire thing is real weird.  The match is short, and Mr. Perfect easily wins.

Mr. Hughes (with Harvey Wippleman) def. The Cannonball Kid

Young X-Pac has already changed his name, as he’s now the Cannonball Kid.  It doesn’t work out any better, and he still hasn’t hit a move in two matches.

Mr. Hughes

Shawn Michaels def. “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan (Lumberjack Match for the Intercontinental Title)

“Hacksaw” Jim Duggan immediately goes after Yokozuna on the outside when he gets to the ring, and the crowd goes absolutely crazy.  Huge “USA” chants start right away.  Shawn Michaels comes out on crutches, but Mr. Perfect attacks him again, and throws him into the ring.  It’s a long match, and not overly exciting, but the crowd is very loud during it.  At the end, Yokozuna attacks Duggan outside of the ring when the ref isn’t looking.  Shawn Michaels is about to pin him, but Mr. Perfect comes in the ring to stop him.  This causes Duggan to get disqualified, and everyone brawls after the match.  Duggan comes back in, and clears the ring with his 2×4.

Promos and Interviews

There’s another short Smoking Gunns promo, and Vince McMahon says that they’ll make their debut this Saturday on WWF Mania.

We get another King of the Ring report with Mean Gene.  He talks about the main event, which is Hulk Hogan vs. Yokozuna for the title.  He also goes over the wrestlers who have already qualified for the King of the Ring tournament so far, and they are: Bret Hart, Lex Luger, Razor Ramon, “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan, and Bam Bam Bigelow.  He mentions that Doink will be having a rematch against Mr. Perfect on Wrestling Challenge, since their last match went to a draw, and that Tatanka will be fighting Giant Gonzalez on WWF Superstars.

Episode 17 – May 17, 1993

Venue – Manhattan Center (Manhattan, NY)

The episode starts with the announcers showing the clip of Mr. Perfect attacking Shawn Michaels from last week.  They talk to Lord Alfred Hayes, and he says that he saw someone come to the building in disguise, and we won’t believe who it is.

Matches

The Smoking Guns def. Glenn Ruth and Tony Vajda

The Smoking Gunns make their Monday Night Raw debut against these losers.  It’s a short match, and an easy win for the new team.  The crowd doesn’t seem to be too into them during the match, but they get a big cheer when they win.

The Kid def. Razor Ramon

Young X-Pac still can’t quite figure out what name he wants, as he’s now simply “The Kid”.  He starts getting destroyed like he has for the last couple weeks, but Ramon gets dazed after running into the ring post above the turnbuckle.  The Kid hits him with a moonsault, and gets the pin to give us the first ever Raw upset.  This is definitely one of the most memorable moments on these early episodes.

1-2-3 Kid Moonsault on Razor Ramon

Tatanka def. Scott Taylor

Scott Taylor has really had some rough luck in these squash matches, and he gets easily defeated by Tatanka here.  He might have successfully executed about two total moves in his three Raw matches.

Tatanka vs. Scott Taylor

Yokozuna (with Mr. Fuji) def. Kamala

These two massive wrestlers run full speed at each other at the beginning, and Kamala staggers Yokozuna.  He actually handles him for a little while, but Yokozuna mostly destroys him the rest of the match.

Marty Jannetty def. Shawn Michaels (Intercontinental Title Match)

Earlier in the night Vince McMahon was interviewing Shawn Michaels in the ring.  It was mostly to build up his feud with Mr. Perfect, but Michaels said that he’ll take on any challengers.  Someone with a hoodie and sunglasses walked out from the crowd, and then revealed himself to be Marty Jannetty.  This is the first time that we had seen him since the Royal Rumble, and he challenged Shawn Michaels to a match tonight.

The crowd is really into Jannetty, and chants “Marty” at the beginning.  He looks really good here, and is super fast throughout the match.  At one point, Michaels tries to leave, but Mr. Perfect is standing in the entrance way.  Jannetty eventually gets the surprise victory with the small package to become the new Intercontinental Champion after Mr. Perfect throws his towel at Shawn Michaels.  This is the first ever title change on Raw, and probably the best Raw match so far.

Shawn Michaels vs. Marty Jannetty

Promos and Interviews

Other than the Shawn Michaels interview, we just get a King of the Ring report with Mean Gene.  He talks about the main event of Hulk Hogan vs. Yokozuna, and plays up the big tournament.  He also goes through the tournament matches so far: Bret Hart vs. Razor Ramon, “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan vs. Bam Bam Bigelow, and Lex Luger vs. Tatanka.  The last qualifying matches are Shawn Michaels vs. Crush, and Kamala vs. Mr. Hughes.  I think that he’s mistaken here, because they still have to do the rematch between Doink and Mr. Perfect.  That would be too many wrestlers.

Episode 18 – May 24, 1993

Venue – Manhattan Center (Manhattan, NY)

Matches

Mr. Perfect def. Doink (King of the Ring Qualifying Match)

When Doink comes out, he immediately hides under the ring.  A couple of seconds later, they go to Lord Alfred Hayes outside of the Manhattan Center…he’s with Doink, who says that he’s only an illusion.  The evil clown Doink antics are usually decent, but this is getting kind of cheesy.

Lord Alfred Hayes Interviewing Doink

The match starts off fast with Doink attacking Mr. Perfect as soon as he gets into the ring.  This is probably one of the longest Raw matches that we’ve seen so far, and it’s mostly very good.  It gets a little slow in the middle with Doink trying to wear down Mr. Perfect, but his viciousness makes up for it.  Doink had injured his leg early into the match, and does a good job of selling it the entire time.  At the end, Doink gets knocked out of the ring, and switches with another Doink under the ring.  The fresh Doink handles Mr. Perfect for a while, but Perfect manages to get the win anyway.  After the match, both Doinks attack Mr. Perfect until Crush comes out to make the save.

Money, Inc. def. Mike Bell and Tony DeVito

Before the match, the Million Dollar Man wants to prove that everybody has a price, so he offers $100 for someone from the audience to shine their shoes.  Money, Inc. easily wins the actual match.

Crush def. Bobby Who

Crush gets a big cheer when he comes out, but the crowd really isn’t into him at all during the match…this might be the quietest we’ve ever heard the crowd on Monday Night Raw.  Other than during his match with Lex Luger, fans just don’t seem to be supporting Crush.  He easily wins this short squash match though.

Adam Bomb (with Johnny Polo) def. Phil Apollo

It’s the Monday Night Raw debut of both Adam Bomb and Johnny Polo.  Adam Bomb was a surprisingly athletic big man, who had a good look to him, but yet never seemed to go anywhere.  This character would last a couple of years, but he was out of the WWF by mid 1995.  Afterwards, he would have a mostly unmemorable run as Wrath in WCW in the late ’90s.  His mostly successful run was probably as Bryan Clark when he teamed with Brian Adams aka Crush to form KroniK.  Unfortunately, this was early 2000s WCW, so nobody was watching.

Adam Bomb’s manager, Johnny Polo, would actually have a much more memorable and successful career.  He would become Raven a couple of years later in ECW, and turned into a mid-’90s staple in that federation.  He would also have a run in WCW, and then return to the WWF in 2000.

Anyway, back to the actual match, it’s an easy win for Adam Bomb.

Adam Bomb

Promos and Interviews

There’s another King of the Ring report with Mean Gene.  He goes over the matches for the tournament, which are officially set: Bret Hart vs. Razor Ramon, “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan vs. Bam Bam Bigelow, Tatanka vs. Lex Luger, and Mr. Perfect vs. Mr. Hughes (there’s no mention of the Shawn Michaels vs. Crush match that he talked about last week).  He also continues to build up the main event of Hulk Hogan vs. Yokozuna, and we get a promo from Hulk Hogan with Jimmy Hart (it’s the first time that we’ve seen him since he won the title at Wrestlemania).

Vince McMahon interviews Razor Ramon in the ring.  The crowd starts chanting “1-2-3” during the interview, and Ramon offers the Kid $2,500 to step back into the ring with him again.  Vince asks him about his opening round King of the Ring tournament match against Bret Hart, and Hart comes out to lead the crowd in more “1-2-3” chants.  Bret Hart mostly makes fun of him for losing.

Vince McMahon Interviewing Razor Ramon

At the end of the show, we get a backstage promo from Bam Bam Bigelow, because he’ll be fighting Marty Jannetty next week for the Intercontinental Title.  Vince McMahon mentions that Luna Vachon will be in Bam Bam Bigelow’s corner, and Sensational Sherri will be in Marty Jannetty’s corner.

Episode 19 – May 31, 1993

Venue – Manhattan Center (Manhattan, NY)

It’s Memorial Day, and Raw starts with a promo from “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan outside of the Manhattan Center.  It’s his usual “USA” promo, but he’s extra excited since it’s Memorial Day.

Matches

Marty Jannety (with Sensational Sherri) def. Bam Bam Bigelow (with Luna Vachon) – Intercontinental Title Match

Sensational Sherri attacks Luna Vachon as soon as she gets into the ring, so they’re continuing their rivalry that’s been building up since Wrestlemania.  The crowd is really into Marty Jannetty again this week, and continues to chant “Marty”.  This is an intense back and forth match, and Jannetty looks really impressive again.  Jannetty is typically thought of as nothing more than a joke because of how pathetic his career was after the breakup of the Rockers compared to the career of Shawn Michaels.  He’s really good in the ring though, and this is the second great match in a row that he’s had on Raw.

Marty Jannetty

The match ends after Jannetty knocks Bam Bam Bigelow to the outside after Sensational Sherri had distracted him.  They fight for a while on the outside, but Sensational Sherri again distracts Bigelow before he could get back into the ring causing him to get counted out.  Sensational Sherri calls out Luna Vachon, and then slams her on the outside.  Bam Bam Bigelow comes back out, and holds Sensational Sherri for Luna, but she doesn’t really do anything other than rip her shirt.  Tatanka comes out to make the save.

The Steiner Brothers def. The Executioner and Rich Myers

Vince McMahon mentions that it will be the Steiner Brothers and the Smoking Gunns vs. Money, Inc. and the Headshrinkers at King of the Ring.  The Steiner Brothers win this easy squash match, and we get to see a Steiner Screwdriver!

Steiner Screwdriver

Mr. Hughes def. Burt Centeno

Another squash match for Mr. Hughes, and the crowd really doesn’t have much of a reaction to him.

“Hacksaw” Jim Duggan def. Mark Thomas

“Hacksaw” Jim Duggan gets the crowd into it early with “USA” chants, and he easily wins here.  After the match, he has the flag brought into the ring, and says the pledge of allegiance with the crowd.  Something tells me that this would offend people today.

Razor Ramon def. Tony Roy

Randy Savage leads the crowd in “1-2-3” chants, which distracts Razor Ramon.  He gets rolled up, and nearly defeated by this loser a couple of times.  The crowd also chants “we want the kid” at one point.  Despite the couple close pinfalls, Ramon mostly destroys this jobber.

Promos and Interviews

Another King of the Ring report with Mean Gene.  He continues to talk about the main event of Hulk Hogan vs. Yokozuna, and once again goes over the King of the Ring tournament matches.  Shawn Michaels vs. Crush has now been added as a normal match on this event.

There’s a quick prerecorded promo from the 1-2-3 Kid (it looks like this is officially his name now).  Vince McMahon had said that the Kid refused to take the $2,500 that Razor Ramon had offered him last week, so Ramon made it $5,000 over the weekend.  In the promo, the Kid basically just says that he won’t take the $5,000.

Raw ends with Vince McMahon interviewing Yokozuna and Mr. Fuji outside of the ring.  It’s mostly Mr. Fuji talking, and Yokozuna just says “Hulkamania will die”.  Last time that Hulk Hogan was on Raw, I had mentioned that he still got the biggest cheers out of anyone on the roster, but that’s really changed now.  When Vince McMahon mentions his name, the crowd loudly boos, and starts chanting “Hogan sucks”.  It was one thing for him to be a part timer, but he hasn’t even made an appearance since winning the title at Wrestlemania, so I would imagine that fans were getting frustrated.  “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan shows up in the crowd waving an American flag, and has the crowd chanting “USA” as Raw goes off the air.

Vince McMahon Interviewing Yokozuna and Mr. Fuji

Commercials

  • Preview for WWF Mania (episodes 15, 17 – 19).
  • ICOPRO commercial with Tatanka (episodes 15 – 19).
  • Classic Slim Jim commercial with “Macho Man” Randy Savage (episodes 15 – 17).
  • Commercial for “Smack ‘Em Whack ‘Em” on VHS.  I’m not sure what this tape actually is, but the commercial is just the Bushwhackers trying to repair a house, but ruining everything (episode 15).
  • New commercial for the latest WWF Action Figures (episodes 15, 16, 18, 19).
  • New preview for All American Wrestling (episodes 16 – 18).
  • Preview for Hulk Hogan vs. Yokozuna at King of the Ring (episode 19).
  • Commercial for Royal Rumble on Super Nintendo (episode 19).

Overall Thoughts

This was certainly the most eventful month of Raw so far, and having the 1-2-3 Kid upset Razor Ramon and Shawn Michaels lose the Intercontinental Title to Marty Jannetty added some much needed excitement to the show.  I personally enjoy watching these early episodes of Raw, because they always make sense.  Everything is done to either enhance a wrestler, progress a storyline, or build up a feud for the next PPV event.  Still, things have been extremely predictable since the first month, and other than Mr. Perfect defeating Ric Flair in the loser leaves town match, nothing of consequence has ever really happened.  So, this month showed that “anything could happen” on Raw, and definitely provides more interest for the show.