On this date in WWF history, May 3rd, in 1993, an epic mullet-filled episode of Monday Night RAW hit the airwaves from the Manhattan Center in New York City, New York. We had a tux clad Vince McMahon, Bobby The Brain Heenan and the flamboyant Macho Man Randy Savage at ringside on commentary, with ring announcer Howard Finkel on hand.
This was back when RAW aired in a manageable block of time, was heavy on solid wrestling, light on promos and absent of any recaps whatsoever. Yes, really. Seriously. Not only that, but we start the show off with a highly entertaining almost 15 minute opening match. It featured a young Shawn Michaels as the Intercontinental Champion (selling moves like no one before, or after, has ever done), elevating Hacksaw Jim Duggan to far more enjoyable levels than this fan had seen from him in awhile.
Duggan was totally over with this crowd of marks from New York, who were chanting his catch phrases and cheering him on against the champ en masse. The match itself was entertaining as hell, because well, Michaels/Duggan.
It's worth saying twice, the crowd was great!
Michaels was flopping all over the joynt like a fish, flailing about over the ropes, and running away. Meanwhile, Duggan was of course chasing him down, amping up the crowd and tossing him over the barrier into said crowd. Then post-match, Hacksaw swipes the mic, cuts a promo, and proceeds to toss chairs into the ring like a crazy man, why?
Why, so he could stage a sit-down strike demanding a rematch, since he had only won via countout, tough guy!
Duggan then conveniently exits the ring during Mean Gene Okerlund's King of the Ring Segment. We learn of him surrendering his strike via a kayfabe communiqué, which was transmitted to a non-existent earpiece that Gene pretends to touch his finger to during his report.
The storyline then went that Duggan had the home phone number of then WWF President, Jack Tunney. Duggan succeeded in getting him to grant him a Lumberjack Intercontinental Title Match with Michaels for the following week's episode of RAW. Yes, on RAW, you didn't have to wait for a pay-per-view.
Later on in the show, the post-match promo Duggan cut with Vince at ringside featured a classic moment where Hacksaw said (referring to Michaels), "He can't run, or hide...Michaels is sure pretty, and he sure wrestles well, but he can't fight a lick, and when I get in the ring, I'm taking that title away from you, one way or the other -- tough guy! Hoooo!"
The lead off match was followed by a brief squash match featuring Doink the Clown handily defeating the Kamikaze Kid, just a week after we first saw double Doinks appear. Then, in an impressive comeback effort, the aging Bob Backlund executed an incredibly strong moveset during the latter half of his match vs. Duane Gill. (Side note: notice that production spelled it Dwayne). Definitely some impressive feats to see from Bob, enough so to even get the commentary team to actually pay attention to the action in the ring there for a bit.
We then got a surprise guest appearance from famed Tag Team Manager, Captain Lou Albano, who joins commentary while his jobbers, the team of Jim Bell & Tony Roy, get annihilated at the hands of the Samoan wildmen. Yes, one of the contenders for the CSS Greatest Tag Team of All Time, and at this time the wild Samoans were known as The HeadShrinkers (and consisted of Samu & Fatu, Managed by Samu's father Afa).
You might be able to see that Samu and Fatu may have been influential to a young Roman Reigns or Seth Rollins in this match -- watch for the primal scream, the group mentality, and their charisma with the cameras. The match also results in some classic heelish banter between Lou and Bobby at ringside.
And for your finale, but of course, why not have the Ugandan giant, the mighty Kamala appear sans his Manager Rev Slick? With the help of the crowd, (since you know, he doesn't speak English very well or know the customs --even though wrestling is his job) he learns how to roll his opponent and pin him properly to defeat a helpless Rich Myers. A moment from their match, right here:
Post-show, for our 1993 version of Backstage Fallout, we get Bobby interviewing our sexy boy Shawn. They talk about Duggan, Shawn not even having Tunney's number, and the upcoming Lumberjack match; which they would be having for the Intercontinental Championship the following week -- on RAW.
Here is the episode in it's entirety, complete with a few WWF-sponsored commercials for Slim Jims and weight lifting supplements. Enjoy!
So, Cagesiders, do any of you remember this episode fondly? Do you perhaps wish that our current Monday Night Raw production crew would go back to the archives and take some pointers from the pre-digital era crew? What say you? Sound off in the comments below!
And now, from the desk of our CSS Senior Editor; for your viewing pleasure we bring to you, additional posts dusted off from the --
3 - MAY
3 May 2012
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3 May 2011
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