Review: Monday Night Raw November 17, 1997

Raw is War
Raw is War

On the second Raw after the Montreal Screw Job, a funny thing happened. Vince McMahon made himself out to be a total dunderhead, liar and idiot all in two little hours. Now, like never before, you’ll understand why.

Raw opens with Stone Cold Steve Austin – and in classic form. The crowd was still grasping how to perform a “Hell yeah” and Austin bullies JR a little too – wonder who put him up to that?

Next, Jerry Lawler is after revenge on Marc Mero – a full month after Mero beat Jerry’s not-son, Brian. This feud has money written no where on it.

JR then repeatedly and obviously mentions that Sable was kicked BY A HORSE. Apparently, this “horse” kicked Sable directly in the eye – but just hard enough to resemble a male punch. Match between King and “Marvelous” Marc Mero begins. Lawler hits a drop kick to the chest and goes outside to ask if that was great (imagine this in a UFC bout). Mero hates being pushed on WWE TV so he misses a baseball slide. Eventually after some boxing, King touches Mero’s lower back which makes him jump out of the ring. Throughout this match, Sable demonstrates her acting prowess by laughing out of character at Brian Christopher. King hits a piledriver as Sable jumps in the ring and causes a DQ (and has a black eye – from a horse kick.) Jim Cornette sells that the fans must not know that Sable was kicked by a horse. Domestic violence angles. Miss the Attitude Era?

Vince and JRs interview begins – and Vince’s black eye – caused by Bret’s fist – looks less badly than Sables. Vince discusses never believing that Bret Hart would “not do what’s right” (jobbing to Shawn) even though video evidence to the contrary exists. Vince then lies and says he and Bret “orchestrated” Bret’s $3 million per year WCW contract by signing him to a 20 year deal to the WWF. (In a 1998 interview with Off the Record, Vince said he couldnt afford to pay him anymore and had to get out of the deal – although he paid Mike Tyson $5 million for 3 months of work the following year, $28 million to the guy who took a Rocker Dropper a few years prior and $60 million to Connecticut when Linda tried running for a lesser office than measly-commentator Jesse Ventura successfully did in Minnesota with far less money – LOL.) He says Bret wasn’t a good investment for the WWF anymore. He said “He wasn’t paying off from a financial standpoint.”

After an edit because Vince probably sounded too inauthentic, Vince says he was “disappointed that” Bret punched him. Says he had a concussion from the punch. And says “perhaps things would be a little different had there been a confrontation.”

“Have you considered pressing charges?” Vince, “I have considered it. I’m not pursuing it at the moment. I guess it all depends on Bret.” Doing what? This statement makes no sense.

Vince says Bret should have congratulated Shawn on beating him after Bret let Shawn pin him, in a story written world of course. Shawn had openly told the older veteran Bret that he wouldn’t do a job to him, after Bret offered that he still would job to Shawn.

Amazing how this interview takes a different light now.

Hairy Miguel and Savio Vega go against an early New Age Outlaws. Hey Zeus (that’s how you spell it, right?) and someone else, Jorge probably, run out and the match ends in a schmoz, much like Bret and Shawn were supposed to with the Harts and DX.

Next, since Ken Shamrock has been catapulted into the title picture, were treated to a video that is about 2 minutes long, the exact length of his career in wrestling at this point. Bleeds a lot and snaps a lot. Hmm.

Sunny comes out next. Still sad that Bret left, since Bret had slept with every woman in America and Sunny likewise had slept with every man – except for each other. Just missed each other. LOL.

Some fan had a sign that says “kiss me Sunny” and looks probably 13. Chances are, he has more money today. A fan tries to kidnap one of the midget wrestlers. Lights go out and Jim Cornette loses his mind. The “minis” run in circles like cartoon characters. Their match ends in a schmoz.

Kane apparently thirsts for a midget but will settle for the Headbangers, who appropriately attack Kane with a boom box.

Were due another “Why Bret Why” segment, although its never made clear what the question is. “Why Vince Why” would make more sense. We see the same replay as earlier of last week on Raw, when HHH appeared to pin Ken Shamrock as Raw went off the air (that really builds a challenger up! But the Kliq wasn’t about to job now, because wrestling is real). On a side note – Slaughter shoves the shit out of HHH and Hunter botches falling out of the ring – since he didn’t figure ole Sarge had it in him.

Rick Rude, a member of Generation B, comes out to his last night on Raw/first on Nitro and in the WWE – he went to WCW the day before this aired and jumped ship. He also shaved his beard into a – get this – goatee. OOOOOH BURN.

A crappy cardboard sign is in focus as another sneaky fan holds up a neon sign that says “Hunter Hearst HOMO.” Hunter makes a chin joke even though his nose is stupid big. Then DX toilet papers Slaughter with an X – WWEs answer to spray paint by the nWo.

The refs have difficulty removing this. One starts to pull it off – then lets go like that might get him in hot water.

Scott Taylor and Eric Shelley battle next as literally 500 fans walk in front of the ring to the concession stand. Jeff Jarrett says next that he’s going to debut tomorrow…no…next Mondeee night. He bitches a bunch about Bret Hart and his phone call not being promoted enough. Scott Taylor hits an off the top rope DDT – and wins – as Shelley kicks out last minute at 3. That looks so stupid – a DDT was a knock out in the 80s. Late 90s and off the top rope DDTs barely beat you.

Marc Mero is back to give a stupid promo then barely shove Butterbean, who legit shoves Mero so hard – a sonic boom cloud appeared behind him.

Vince mentions that if Bret comes back, he wouldn’t give him anymore “free shots” – as opposed to what Vince did last time, which was get punched and fall down smacking his head. Next time Bret! Vince then says Bret isn’t the best there is, was and ever will be. Then we see the “Hunter Hearst HOMO” sign again.

It’s time. It’s time. It’s…strip mall developer time. Goldust comes out (to the ring). He says he’s an invalid – and Vader holds back from saying a naughty word with, ” I don’t give a – I don’t care” – phew. Only Stone Cold gets to cuss!

Vader gets hit with a hammer – and another match ends in a schmoz.

Dude Love and Rocky Maivia battle for the first of many times and guess what? The match ends in another schmoz.

Out of 6 matches, 5 end in bullshit ways no different than Vince promised Bret for his Survivor Series match in the secret recorded pre match meeting (the one match on Raw that didn’t have a bullshit end featured a Jeff Jarrett phone call, with little action called and a guy kicking out of a nuclear bomb at the 3 count).

Schmoz’s – bad for business when you’re leaving for WCW, perfectly fine otherwise.

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