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RAW Preview and Other
Monday News....
October 28, 2002

by Rick Scaia
Exclusive to OnlineOnslaught.com


You know, Mondays would be a lot more fun if the Fed just pulled the ol' switcheroo:  you know, put the SmackDown! guys on live on RAW, and put RAW stuff over on Thursdays.

But noooo...  the big weekly live show, the one where we all sit around wondering "I wonder what could happen" (instead of just reading the spoilers) is still the one where what happens is Triple H gets locked in a trunk with the tacit threat of having his corpse violated in a matter of mere moments.  Whoopee.

But, it's something to do, right?  Let's get on with it:

  • Tonight on RAW, according to the WWE-approved cable TV preview: "Did Triple H survive in Kane's car trunk?".
    Later tonight, according to Miss Cleo, at The Rick's domicile: "The Giants' victory over the Eagles is celebrated.  Was there a wrestling show, too?".  HA!  Just kidding.  I swear, I'll remember to set the VCR!
    But that doesn't mean I have to look forward to reviewing the footage...  a company that has had as many opportunities to drop or alter such a mind-numbingly stupid angle is simply not going to "see the light" tonight.  The name "Katie Vick" won't evaporate, and I'm sure the completely ludicrous behavior exhibited by the Kane and HHH characters in recent weeks will continue.
    Last week, I suggested that maybe one "out" would be to have HHH come out and admit, "Ha ha, it was all just a joke, Kane.  Tried to get under your skin, and boy howdy, it worked.  I'm still the champ, I still have the gold, and you got nothing, freak!"  From there, you could enter a much more palatable Phase Two of the feud, where the rivalry is actually about, you know, this World Title thingy.
    For a brief moment last week, I thought perhaps I prophesied correctly:  as soon as "Kane" in that skit was revealed to be HHH in a mask (it took about 4 nanoseconds to figure that out), I sensed we were in for comedy.  The joke "out" I had hoped for?  Sadly, as it turned out, no.  HHH's skit wasn't exactly funny: either HHH's comedic timing is awful as compared to his dramatic/heelish timing, or the creative team flat-out gave him a big fat wad of nothing.  Five minutes of unfunny fumbling around just to get to the "I screwed your brains out" punchline didn't cut the mustard.
    And then, even though they'd revealed the whole angle to be just a sick ruse on the part of HHH, they completely dismissed the chance to escape the angle with the minimal amount of damage.  No, instead of having Kane -- like a normal, rational person with a grasp on reality -- just shake his head and say, "My god, what a schmuck," when confronted by HHH's skit, he flies off the handle, locks HHH in a trunk, and threatens to have sex with his corpse.  Cue the dramatic music.  You know, the one that goes: dum da dum dum, dum da dum dum DUMB!
    We've already turned Kane from a dark, mysterious figure with a tortured past into a guy who was hanging around at keggers 10 years ago, picking up chicks.  We've already turned him from an ass-kicking monster into a dolt who can't drive a stick.  And now, when confronted by some ass who has concocted a sophomoric scheme that has absolutely NOTHING to do with reality, he flies off the handle and responds by stooping down to HHH's level of retarded threats and accusations.  That's just not how I'd have done it, and so I can't relate at all.  I realize there might be little to be gained from a dramatic perspective by having Kane act like a normal person and just shrug off the pathetic attempt at psychological warfare; but you'd gain enough from a character rehabilitation standpoint that I think it'd have been the right play.
    But anyway, I've already gone back enough on my promise of last Wednesday (to try to just ignore the whole silly thing), so suffice to say at this point:  Kane vs. Triple H, the Next Chapter.  Tonight, only on RAW!  Feel the Suck!
    Elsewhere, there exists one potentially VERY interesting reason why you might want to watch RAW anyway.  His name is Scott Steiner, and he's signed his WWE contract.  And this week's WWE TV tapings, conveniently enough, are taking place in Steiner's home state of Michigan.  Can you say Cheap Pop?  I knew you could...
    I laid out the basic logic in Friday's update:  yes, the better matches for Steiner are all on SD! (Benoit, Angle, Lesnar)... but RAW needs the star power.  So, I reasoned, Steiner's going to RAW.  And I glossed over another good reason for Steiner to go to RAW:  unfinished business with Booker T.  When Steiner was going around "retiring" babyfaces left and right, Booker was the only one to come back and challenge Steiner again.  And on the last Nitro ever, what did Booker do?  He beat Steiner for the WCW Title.  It doesn't take a genius to figure this stuff out.
    Now, will Steiner show up tonight?  I can't say...  earlier this year, the Fed did the "slow burn" intro with the nWo vignettes that ran for a month before Hogan, Hall, and Nash actually showed up.  But there's always something to be said for surprise comebacks, too.  You could book it like Benoit's return a few months back: Steiner comes out, unexpectedly, and gets a babyface/hometown pop before swerving everybody in the end by turning heel.  I think that'd work just fine.
    Of course, so would starting a month's worth of Steiner vignettes tonight, with the pay-off not coming till the RAW after Survivor Series.
    Other stuff:  the New Dudley Boyz won the #1 Contender spot for the World Tag Titles, but may not be in the best of shape after a post-match attack from Storm/Regal; we'll have to see if they're going straight after the champs, Jericho and Christian, or if they want to finish this business with Storm and Regal, first...  Al Snow seems intent on making sure no harm comes to his former pupil, Chris Nowinski, and Nowinski seems intent on getting Al to go away; I seem intent on wanting to like Snow even if he's bogged down in an inane Tough Enough storyline...  Stacy Keibler has joined forces with Test, apparently, and only time will tell if she's hot enough to get that big lug over...  barring the Steiner thing, Booker T may be relegated to teaming up some more with Goldust; Rosie and Jamal are left with nothing to do at the present time...  Rob Van Dam also is pretty much left out in the cold, since an ongoing feud with Ric Flair doesn't exactly have legs...  Shawn Michaels could start attacks on Triple H at anytime; or he could make HHH wait, and wonder...  and finally, Eric Bischoff will have to let us all in on details about his "Elimination Chamber" (which I have a feeling will bear a passing resemblance to the War Games match concept before all is said and done; perhaps a one-ring variant of that match?).
    Check out RAW tonight.  Or tape it, and be ready to engage your VCR's fast forward feature as necessary.  Or if you're REALLY spineless, you could, I guess, skip the show entirely and just come on back here to OO tomorrow.  CRZ will be here with a Very Special RAW Recap.
  • The final rating for last week's SmackDown! was a 3.7; despite the fact that the overnight rating had dropped from the previous week, this final rating represents a gain of three-tenths of a point from the week before.
    Some networks were in reruns, up against the World Series, so that might have helped thin the competitive herd for SD!... but regardless of the reason they tuned in, the number of folks who watched SD! were definitely treated to a good show and -- Big Show aside -- were given plenty of reasons to come on back for more even when those other shows weren't in reruns.
  • The SD! roster's Euro Tour was a success by all counts:  full houses and good shows around the horn.
    Of course, the centerpiece of the trans-Atlantic jaunt was the Rebellion PPV.  Edge got to main event his first PPV (I think it's his first, anyway), challenging Brock Lesnar for the WWE Title (actually, it was a handicap match with Heyman also involved).
    The show, as a whole, was described as being substantially better than the usual Euro-only PPVs (which are basically dressed up house shows).  A full recap is available right here, courtesy of OO Reader Tony Cottam.
  • Not a whole lot earth-shattering in Jim Ross' weekend WWE.com column...
    He confirmed the signing of Scott Steiner, speaking at length about his potential as a main event player, assuming he can remain healthy; BTW, Steiner signed his contract on October 22, a week ago tomorrow.
    Beyond that, JR talked briefly about the No Mercy PPV (saying it was worth the fans' money, though he only singled out SD! segments for particular praise)...  he outlined the next wave of developmental stars who might be ready for the jump to WWE TV (Doug Basham and Charlie "RC" Haas sounded most ready)...  on the injury front: Rhyno has begun light work-outs and will be back in December; Maven and Kanyon are going to work-out for about a month in OVW before returning to TV; Jazz, Sean O'Haire, and Mark Henry should also all be back in action before the end of the year...  
  • IF Scott Steiner debuts on WWE TV this week (and that is "IF" and not "WHEN"), it actually might HAVE to be on RAW.
    As we talked about a month ago, Steiner actually has a commitment to wrestle for Stars and Stripes Championship Wrestling tomorrow night in New Jersey.  Thus, no way he's gonna make SmackDown! tapings in Michigan.
    Steiner's first non-WWA-PPV wrestling gig on US soil in over 18 months will take place tomorrow night at a Medieval Times theme restaurant in Lyndhurst, NJ.  SSCW is now promoting tomorrow's "Hell-o-ween" event as the first, last, and ONLY indie wrestling event that Steiner will ever appear at, emphasizing that it will be a unique chance to meet Steiner (there is a pre-show meet 'n' greet/autograph thingy) in an intimate, non-WWE setting.
    More info is available at www.SSCWWrestling.com
  • OK, so there is a special section of "Divas Undressed" pictures on the WWE website.  I was not having my leg pulled.  It's divasundressed.wwe.com.  Yes, there's Ivory in a see-thru top, just as promised.  And something that looks like it might be Terri's nipple, too.
    OOficial complaint:  no Lita?  C'mon, I know she wasn't 100% healthy, but I'm here to say that if there's one girl I can think of who could pull off a cervical collar/thong ensemble, it's Lita...
  • I can't be the only one fired up for the new Grand Theft Auto game coming out tomorrow, can I?  I am not a video game guy, but I generally allow myself to be a mark for the annual release of one (1) game franchise.  For a while, it was the Tomb Raider games.  At some point after Thanksgiving every year, my house would become Tomb Raider Central for about two weeks until we beat the game.  It was a group effort: people actually came over to watch a designated Controller Person play the game, and to offer suggestions.  Then Tomb Raider got boring and took a year off to regroup.  So we adopted Grand Theft Auto 3.
    I mention it only because after we got addicted to GTA3, I can envision a scenario in which the new Grand Theft Auto has a similar effect:  I might put myself in the peanut gallery for hours at a stretch, suggesting the most strategic time to pick up hookers and what-not, instead of watching and then reporting on wrestling.  You have been warned.
  • Oh yeah, when I start mentioning my sporadic video game playing as a premise for including links to Amazon.com, you KNOW I'm running on fumes.  Chalk it up to the fact that the OO Pledge Drive finally seems to be losing steam.  What, after only one week?!?  
    If you're just finding out about it now, and want to help OO launch Fiscal Year 2003, all the info about making donations (via Amazon, PayPal, or through the US Mail) is available right here.  Thanks in advance.
    See you again on Wednesday, with spoilers and other news! 


Rick Scaia is a wrestling fan from Dayton, OH.  He's been doing this since 1995, but enjoyed it best when the suckers from SportsLine were actually PAYING him to be a fan.

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