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Banana Brand Extension
April 2, 2002

by Christopher Robin Zimmerman


OLD BUSINESS: Last week I completely forgot to thank The Cubs Fan for filling in on the Amazon Onslaught RAW report! So I'm doing it tonight! Thanks Cubs! Everybody go visit thecubsfan.com RIGHT NOW! Or after you read this report anyway...

TONIGHT: Here's your first look at the new logo, graphics, listen to the music, but nothing else has changed...it's still Ross & Lawler providing the hype! Tonight, Triple H is officially presented with the Undisputed Championship (which he won FIFTEEN DAYS AGO)! Also, Stone Cold will be in the house! We SWEAR! (Also maybe a match or two - or not)

T(O)N(I)G(HT): In "The Outcast," Trek attempts yet again to pussyfoot around a dicey subject with weak results - mainly because it turns out to be one of those yucky Jeri Ryan episodes that threw out all the warning signs...but they went ignored, so when her style ended up pervading Voyager later, it ended up sabotaging it RIGHT from the git-go when she was made producer. On the other hand, this was the kind of episode that was MADE to be dissected on rec.arts.startrek.current, because at the time everybody just couldn't WAIT to talk about all those wonderful hot-button sexual issues...mostly because they always attempted to inject them into all the discussion anyway. Oh, what a time to be alive, gay and have Usenet access! They're here, they're queer and when it comes to Star Trek Usenet discussion, they can't shut up any more easily than the straight folk! Umm, I don't know how I ended up talking about this for almost 150 words...sorry--hey, and how ABOUT how that wacky Riker? He'll fuck ANYBODY (except a guy - unless you believe some RASer's, heh heh heh)

QUICK QUOTE: 14.05 (- .70, last year: 14, two years ago: 16 7/8)

ANNIVERSARIES: Hey, it's the fourth anniversary of WrestleManiacs! I know, I know - these things mean less and less the further and further removed we get from 1998...still...this one goes out to Mike! (But only 'cause they go out to Rick EVERY week)

TV-14-DLV - CC - One World Leader Attitude - WWF!

"Welcome to RAW." In the office, it's Ric Flair - and a new WWF Championship belt (with "Triple H" nameplate) - and a few words for us! "Tonight, RAW enters a new era. The Ric Flair Era - an era that promises to be more exciting and action-filled woo than ever before! And tonight I promise to do everything in my power to sign Stone Cold Steve Austin to a contract that will ensure that Stone Cold Steve Austin stays with RAW forever. Also, I have a personal honour - tonight - of presenting the NEW Undisputed Championship belt to the reigning World Wrestling Federation Champion Triple H! Let the party begin! Woooo!"

(New) Opening Credits - if Austin doesn't join RAW, I sure hope they edit him out of these opening credits!!! (Oh is that a spoiler? Damn)

I GET LETTERS: Speaking of The Cubs Fan, once again he checks in so YOU don't have to:

Raw Open:

Some random chick, "looking down her shirt" camera angle
Lead Singer, through a cage
The Moon
A hallway, with a woman at the far end
Random chick looking at herself in a mirror (or someone doing the same motions?) in a dark light room
Time laspe road scenes
The semi-crashing into the ambulance - two different angles
Triple H's water spit <- First actual wrestler!
Someone in the band? Can't tell.
Ric Flair, in darkness
Lead Singer
Big Show - he slaps himself on his chest and sparks shoot out
Steve Austin slams beers together
Matt Hardy (I think)
Jeff Hardy
Austin drinks that beer
Lead Singer
Lita? Maybe.
Lead Singer
Rob Van Dam flying to the outside
A topless chick, facing away from the camera.
RAW Logo
Undertaker, face scrunched up in pain
RVD, face scrunched up in pain
Austin, face scrunched up in pain
William Regal, in darkness
Brock Lesnar
Booker T
The whole band
Scott Hall
Guitar player
Matt Hardy.
Drummer, from below
Some chick - maybe the random one they keep showing. It could be Stacy.
Triple H
Austin, blood on his face and in pain - not the classic WM13 shot
Kane, in darkness, doing his pyro cue
Kane's pyro
RAW Logo
Triple H
Lead Singer.
Everyone not who's not the Singer.
nWo lego - lit red and black.
Booker T, looking at his hand, near the old entrance.
Another random chick - I think I'm supposed to know who this is but they give us a bad angle
Lead Singer.
Lita, darkness.
Bradshaw, darkness.
The two random chicks we've seen - one facing away from us is toppless, still.
Undertaker - many shots.
RAW logo on the WWF-tron.
Raven - you can't see much of his funky hair here.
Random chick.
Austin - many shots.
Karate fighthing X-Pac, in darkness.
Triple H.
Jeff? Just a blink.
the RAW logo comes together and that's it. (:26)

All the band bits (27 of the 78) are them playing in the middle of a ring, in the middle of a warehouse with the new entrance set up in the background.

My guess is that someone really liked the "Smackdown darkness" open that was scrapped quick and wanted another shot of it - very similar feel of doing it. Also, the band gave their song for free as long as they could be in quite a bit of the opening; it feels a lot more then 35% when you see it together.

Said band, by the way, is Union Underground...that is, if our commentators are to be believed - hey, why not?

NEW SET SAME OL' PYRO - coming to you LIVE from the Hallie Kate Eisenberg Arena in Albany, NY All Fools' Day 2002 but this is no joke - it's a whole 'nother RAW! But it's still transmitido en espanol SAP - and WOW look at that white noise coming to you from WWF New York!

TONIGHT: Triple H gets a belt!

TONIGHT: Kane takes on THE CROWD - well, we didn't get the graphic of X-Pac we were supposed to get, but we are told that's his opponent

TONIGHT: Stone Cold is in the house - WE SWEAR!

But first, says Ross, "a CHAMPIONSHIP WRESTLING MATCH..."

WWF INTERCONTINENTAL CHAMPIONSHIP: ROB VAN DAM (champion - Battle Creek, Michigan, 235 pounds - with Forceable Entry CD cover) v. BOOKER T (Houston, Texas, 251 pounds)
referee: EARL HEBNER
Ross says he and Lawler made "the right decision" - read into that what you will for storyline purposes...at least RIGHT NOW they're attempting to get into calling the match as opposed to doing other stuff. HERE WE GO: Lockup, chain wrestling to a side headlock by T. van Dam powers out - T with the shoulderblock. Off the ropes, up andd over, leapfrog by van Dam, T drops down and van Dam backflips over him. T back up, there's a huracanrana by van Dam - who points to himself! Let's start over. Lockup, knee by T, forearm in the back. Chop, chop, chop, into the ropes, head down, van Dam back to back over, catches the kick, stepover heel kick connects. Forearm by van Dam, into the corner, shoulder in the gut, shoulder, superfluous backflip, shoulder. Off the ropes...but T catches him and drops him with a hot shot. T follows up with a nice back heel kick. Scoop...and a slam. There's a sidewalk slam - T hooks the leg to get the first near fall of the evening. T pulls up van Dam - van Dam with a left, right, right, runs into a back elbow though - T hooks the leg and gets 2 again. T goes to the headlock. Crowd brings van Dam back to life - elbow, elbow, T forearms him back to the mat. T lifts him up - into the ropes is reversed but T pulls him back into a reverse heel kick - T with ANOTHER 2 count. T back to the headlock...and the crowd goes back to clapping for van Dam...back to his feet - elbow, elbow, elbow, T with a forearm, van Dam put into the ropes, ducks a clothesline, van Dam's Viscera kick connects and both men are down! Hebner's count is up to 4 as T get up - van Dam up, blocking the punch and responding with an elbow. Another block, another elbow, elbow, elbow, T put into the corner, tumbling run into a monkey flip by van Dam - vaults up top - leaping kick finds the mark - deep cover - 1, 2, NO! T manages a kickout. van Dam still on him - kick, forearm - T reverses the whip and doubles him over with a knee...then consults his hand. T comes off the ropes but took too long as van Dam ducks away from the axe kick - there's a Ghetto Blaster gets to chest level. T ducks a clothesline but van Dam drops down out of the waistlock and sweeps the leg backwards to trip up T. van Dam off the ropes, Rolling Thunder MISSES when T rolls out of the way - breakdances back up - HARLEM SIDEKICK! - 1, 2, NO!!!!! T argues the count with Hebner but gets back on van Dam. In the corner, big chop by T, chop, chop - crowd chanting "RVD" - whip into the opposite corner is reversed, but T goes up and over - crisscrosses into the body scissors rollup - 1, 2, van Dam kicks out - van Dam folds T up and HE gets 2. T ducks a clothesline and lands ANOTHER Harlem sidekick. T decides he needs to put some more on him. Sits him up top - they trade blows but T is still in command...climbing up top to try for the superplex - van Dam fighting him off - right, right, right, shoves him back to the ring - Fivestar frog splash! That's his move! 1, 2, 3! (6:41) Oh man, they better not be teasing me by giving me ONE match like this and then never again... This is the kind of match that has been missing from RAW for a long time, and I hope it either goes over right away, or the fans quickly get re-educated to it. Waaaaaait we're not done yet! No sooner is the frog splash replay over than EDDIE GUERRERO - YES, EDDIE GUERRERO is in the ring, grabbing van Dam in mid-pose from the buckles and powerbombing him to the mat! Guerrero isn't done - mount, right, right, right, right - going up top!! Now THAT'S your frog splash! Unlike van Dam, Guerrero shows no ill effects from performing the move and pops right up to give van Dam a little more attitude. Guerrero finally walks off with a sneer - and more importantly, *without* music - another way to use subtlety and get over that this was "unexpected." I applaud! 

Hey, wait, it STILL ain't over yet - BILLIONAIRE VINCE is also out unannounced and he's stolen a mic. "Well, uh...well well!" Vince steps in the ring. "I don't wanna interrupt anything out here - no, but - I don't mean to interrupt your program, but I came out here for one reason. I came out here to sign Stone Cold Steve Austin to an exclusive WWF SmackDown! contract. And if I know Austin, Austin definitely wants to hear what I have to say. So with that in mind, allow me to introduce you to the hottest free agent in the history of the World Wrestling Federation, Stone Cold Steve Austin!" I believe also that he's the ONLY free agent in the history of the World Wrestling Federation, but... well, I don't see him - and neither does anyone else. As McMahon starts to speak again, Ross tells us that Flair has ordered a commercial break from the executive producer as Vince isn't supposed to be on this show, so we cut off everyone in mid-sentence. YES. Somebody's been doing their homework around here, BY GOD

Big Show shills Stacker 2!

When we come back, Vince is still in the ring - apparently, he's been talking through the entire break. "I'll get back to you in a minute there, JR. Oh no no no. You see, I asked for Stone Cold Steve Austin - what do I get? Look at this - I get Ric Flair's SECURITY. Let me tell you somethin' - you guys are pretty smart - no no. If you want me, you come in after me. That's not why I'm here. I'm not leaving this ring until Stone Cold Steve Austin signs this exclusive SmackDown! contract." Vince's next sentence is cut off as RIC FLAIR's music fires up - which means it's time for a Ric Flair entrance - oddly enough, by Ric Flair! "Hey Ric...I just wanna say this, that there's an old expression that money talks and bull(shit) walks, so tonight, I'm doin' the talking - and Ric, you're gonna be doing the walking, pal. Because Austin WILL sign my exclusive contract - and there's not a damn thing you can do about it." "Unless you bought a ticket - unless you bought a ticket, and I'm gonna call Security off for a minute - you're gonna have a small window of opportunity to get your ass out the door and back on the street. And as far as money talkin', I'd say this new set for the new RAW - woooo!" "Yeah, well uh, that's all well and good, Ric, but...I'm not leaving this ring. And there's nothing your Security can do about it - and there's not a damn thing YOU can do about it. Uh, let me remind you the last time you tried to do something, it was on uh, your own show SmackDown! last week when uh, you still owned 50% of it - what happened, Ric? Vince McMahon beat you 1, 2, 3, don't embarrass yourself again here tonight! Come on out, Austin, dammit! Austin, that man Ric Flair is preventing you from coming out here, he's preventing you from hearing what I have to say! Austin, you need to know--" "Vince, Vince, Vince, get a grip. Get a grip. Let's just do a little informal survey on Stone Cold Steve Austin, how about that. All of, all of those... that would like to see Stone Cold on RAW, gimme a hell yeah! Now how about those of you that would like to see Stone Cold on SmackDown!? Now Vince, because it's a new era, I got dressed up real nice tonight, man, I'm Armani all the way - don't make me take off this coat and come down there and do a Royal Rumble moment for ya again, buddy." He starts to the ring. "Let me just say this, Ric - neither you nor anybody else is big enough or bad enough to take my ass outta this ring tonight." Vince is to the apron...Flair stops as some music plays. WEEEEELLLLLL, WELL IT'S THE BIG SHOW is out to make McMahon gulp. Handshake from Flair on the way to the ring. "Welcome to RAW!" Show waves goodbye to Vince as the crowd AGAIN starts singing. "Umm, listen. I know who you are - SHUT UP, DAMMIT! I know who you are, okay? You're the Big Show. Seven feet of ya, five hundred pounds, you gotta remember one thing. MY name is Vince McMahon!" Show grabs Vince by the neck, the pulls him over his back and carries him off as his music plays again. Vince makes a lot of noise - "Austin's not gonna like this!" but amazingly his mic is NOT cut. We take another ad break here.

"Scorpion King" ad

Catch the WWF (RAW roster) live! Tomorrow, Reading! Saturday, Salt Lake City! Sunday, Denver! Next week, RAW is Phoenix and SOLD OUT! Friday, Amarillo! And Saturday, Odessa!

During the Break, Show carried Vince all the way to the door - Vince offered to take his mic back, but Show threw him out.

WILLIAM REGAL (European champion - Blackpool, England, 240 pounds) v. SPIKE DUDLEY (Dudleyville, 150 pounds) in a nontitle match
Patrick pats down Regal but fails to find the knux...which Regal had stashed underneath his armpit. Patrick looks RIGHT AT Regal stuffing the knux in a turnbuckle...sheesh - oh, wait - Patrick sneaks over and grabs the knux, putting them in his own pocket! Well, damn, I must have died and gone to heaven. Lockup, armdrag by Regal - they scrum a bit on the mat, and then Regal lets up, looking rather smug about the whole business. Everybody back up. Waistlock by Regal, to a three-quarter nelson, takes him over (OWCH), puts him on the mat AGAIN - and lets him up one more time with another self-satisfied look. Here we go again - lockup, knee by Regal - into the corner - left forearm by Regal, forearm, forearm, forearm...and a forearm for good luck. Regal waves to the crowd - here comes Spike with a right and a rollup - Regal kicks out as Patrick hits 2. Spike with a dropkick to the left knee - off the ropes but eats a European elbow by Regal for 2 - another cover, forearm grinding the face for 2, another 2, and one more 2. Spike is scrappy, though, and manages a jawbreaker - off the ropes - slips the punch and a crucifix rollup (!) gets Spike 2. Regal with a drop toehold, climbs on the back and unleashes three Euro elbows in the back of the head. Vertical suplex. Cover, forearm in the face, gets ANOTHER near fall. Regal firmly in command. Going for a death suplex but Spike lands on his feet...Spike ducks a swing and tries a dropkick - Regal simply swats it away. Regal with a half nelson belly-to-back suplex (that crazy Regal) and Spike rolls outside after unfolding himself. Regal out after him - thrown into the ropes so Spike can bounce back to the floor. Later tonight, Bubba Ray Dudley gets a shot at Raven's hardcore title. Regal puts Spike on the apron and wraps him around the corner of the mat. Regal back in as Patrick gets to 7. European uppercut, another, Regal stands him up for a THIRD uppercut. And there's one more, why not. Regal's killing him! Into the opposite corner - Spike finally comes back with a head to the gut, another, another, right hand, climbs the corner - Regal shoves him back to the mat and turns round, looking for the brass knuckles. But he doesn't find them - Regal is flustered and Spike is back on his feet...Spike with a gutshot, to the corner for the Dudley 'dog! Spike covers - 1, 2, 3! (3:45) Regal reacts to this upset about as well as you'd expect. Spike waves to him.

The NWO is WALKING! They don't know why Flair drafted them, but they sure hope that he signs Austin. Also, they predict bad things for Kane - "fight one of us, fight us all" and all that. They end up catching sight of something TRULY AMAZING - *somehow* the APA offices were transported BRICK BY BRICK from Philadelphia to Albany and left in the EXACT SAME STATE as last Thursday! Walking in through the door (hey, who says the NWO have no respect?), they clear a path through the beer cans, upright the table and set up the chairs to take a load off. Ross finds this VERY disrespectful! Even DAMN disrespectful!

One of the tracks on Forceable Entry is by Monster Magnet - "Live For the Moment" - here's a snippet.

When we come back, it's a trip to the locker room - Bradshaw and Jacqueline miss Faarooq. Crash pops in, puts a hand in Jackie's face, then plays Just Joe, narcing out the NWO. Bradshaw shoves him aside and goes after them. Jackie puts a hand in HIS face on her way out.

Meanwhile, Trish Stratus checks out a new personalized article of clothsing - Terri happens by and gets offended when all Trish says is "hi, Terri." Somehow this leads to Terri accusing Stratus of having an attitude since landing the cover of Divas attitude. "Need I remind you I'm the diva of all divas?" Before they come to blows, Ric Flair stands between them and says the tension might be relieved with a match. The fans might like to see them in bikinis, in fact. In FACT, since they're acting like children, perhaps a "paddle on a pole" match is in order. "I can show my ass, but I can also kick it - and I'm starting with yours, tonight." Umm....that's gotta be the flimsiest rationale I've ever HEY WAIT A MINUTE TERRI AND TRISH LATER and somebody's gonna get spanked! Lawler wastes no time turning into Beavis.

Meanwhile (3), JONATHAN COACHMAN catches up to Debra outside THE EXCITING DOOR! Any scoops? "I know, Coach, that is the big question of the night - is Stone Cold, is he gonna go with Mr. Flair, or is he gonna go with Mr. McMahon? And...I do know one thing, Steve has not yet made up his mind, but one way or the other, Stone Cold will make a decision, tonight - thanks!"

Meanwhile (4), Hall works on spraypainting the APA door while a card came rages on. "Yeah man, I wanna hit" either refers to cards, or... Just before Nash gets X-Pac to strip, Bradshaw storms the premisese, kicking down the door - he does well enough with X-Pac and Hall, but runs into Nash's big boot. 'Pac adds a chair in the back and a stomp. Nash lovingly brushes back his hair and says "Now you can have your damn office back."

UP NEXT: Bubba Ray Dudley vs. Raven for the Hardcore Championship!

But before we go to ad break, the Boot of the Week, brought to you by Lugz! From SmackDown! last week, Tommy Dreamer and Raven prove too much for Maven - and it's Raven ending up taking the hardcore championship

Mick Foley hosts the new season of "Robot Wars: Extreme Warriors" - oh man he's hanging out with Carol Grow! Remember her on ESPN2's "Coed Fitness?" Oh man, how many a lonely, lonely morning I've spent watching her work on her....oh I've said too much again

Moments Ago, Bradshaw expressed outrage...and look where it got him - this time they at least sync up Bradshaw's bleep with his cuss word

WWF HARDCORE CHAMPIONSHIP: BUBBA RAY DUDLEY (Dudleyville, 325 pounds) v. RAVEN (champion - The Bowery, 239 pounds)
referee: CHAD PATTON
Raven spends a lot of time emptying his shopping cart into the ring - Dudley tries to get him with the STOP sign but misses - finally, he catches a crutch - suh-WING and a miss (lucky for Raven) - head through the ropes and we're on - Raven in - right, right - Dudley trades places in the corner, right, left, right, open-handed slap, hairwhip takedown, elbowdrop, elbowdrop, "take this you sick freak," double sledge. Clothesline puts him out on the floor - Bubba follows. Bubba grabs a bag of oranges (?) and opens it up...then decides to do a little juggling for our amusement before taking a nosh outta one and smacking Raven with another. Shopping card shoved to the STEEL steps, but Raven's already ducked out of the path. Raven with the crutch to the gut - and across the back. Back in the ring we all go - Bubba reverses a whip - wants the Bubbabomb but Raven's trick knee acts up to turn it back his way. Raven with a right hand. Whip across the ring and Dudley crumples 'cause his balls STILL hurt. Raven grabs the trashcanlids with cutout handles and gives Dudley the windmill (six whacks) - DUDLEY FLOP!! Raven with the STOP sign - WHACK! Cover...1, 2, no. Dudley tries to reverse the whip, but Raven reverses back into a sleeper of all things! Bubba's fading fast...but manages to grab the sign and whack Raven into breaking it up. Bubba with "Iblockyourpunchyoudon'tdropmine," again, clothesline, into the ropes, Samoan Drop, 1, 2, Raven kicks out! Dudley grabs a lid as the "we want tables" chant gets louder - Raven reverses a whip attempt but runs into an elbow. Dudley to the second rope...before he can come off, Raven gives him a fire extinguisher blast. Raven back to his feet - Dudley whacks him with the trashcan lid and Raven falls back to the mat. BUBBA HITS THE SECOND ROPE SENTON FOR THE FIRST TIME SINCE WRESTLEMANIA 2000!!!!!!!!!! (Special thanks to researcher jer 307) Hooks the leg - 1, 2, NO!!!! Dudley sets up a chair - whip, reversed, drop toehold by Raven into the chair (which Dudley set up...lemme see....huh. I'll have to figure that out later) - 1, 2, NO! Raven pulls Dudley up, wants the Evenflow but Dudley is out - Bubbabomb HITS - 1, 2, 3! Well I'll be jiggered. Perhaps there's a method to his madness after all. "That was for you, D-Von - that was for you!" Ladies and gentlemen, we have a NEW hardcore champion! (Formula 4:09)

In his limousine, Vince talks (to ME!) on the phone - but how the heck did that cameraman get in there? "Oh no no no - you should know me better than that. Yeah. Lemme tell ya something...just because that big seven foot monster threw me out, you know, that doesn't mean I'm leaving here tonight. I'm still in the parking lot. I'm in my car, I'm in the parking lot, and lemme tell you something, before I leave here tonight, I will have Austin sign this exclusive SmackDown! contract. Austin is on his way out here - what do you mean? Because I have my sources, I sent someone in to get Stone Cold. I'm gonna sign Austin before the night is over."

UP NEXT: Time soon for the WWF Undisputed Title Presentation...to Triple H!

There's a look at the KeyBank marquee...even though it's the PEPSI Arena.

Here comes RIC FLAIR with the new TNN - I mean, the new title belt that will replace the other two. Here also are the RAW Credits, transmitido en espanol SAP, TV-14-DLV and CC boxes. We're still gonna have the RAW Zone, it appears - even if they never actually MENTION it. Hey, how come Jericho never got a new belt? "You've heard me say this a thousand times...this time, I couldn't say it more meaningfullil, more meaningfully. This is the most coveted trophy in ALL of professional sports. And it's my honour tonight to present the reigning World Wrestling Federation champion with this new Undisputed Championship belt...I'm talking about Triple H. Triple H, as you know, came back from a near career-ending injury, he worked, he slaved, he trained to bring himself back to a level that not only took him to a win at the Royal Rumble, it enabled him to win the title at WrestleMania, so please...without further ado, please bring out Triple H, the Undisputed..." Umm, that's AWESOMETAKER's music. Maybe he's disputing it? Ross mentions that Flair made Taker his first draft pick "...so he can make the Undertaker's life a living hell, and anybody that can't figure that out must be a REAL idiot!" Whoa, who crapped in Ross' Kashi? Taker makes a slow walk to the ring - in the ring - and gets himself a microphone. Taker turns his head towards Flair. "So this is how it's gonna be, huh, Flair? You're gonna draft me #1 so you can come out and embarrass me whenever you feel like. Is that how it goes? And I guess you think I'm gonna set back and let that happen. I guess you think I'm gonna set back and watch you give that Undisputed title to Triple H. Well let me fill you in on a few facts about Triple H, Ric Flair...first wait a minute, wait a minute, minute, wait a minute, wait a minute...why don't we go back a couple weeks to Toronto, Canada, at WrestleMania Eighteen - you remember that, Ric? Do you remember me beatin' you down and leaving you in a puddle of your own blood right in the middle of the ring? And you must say honestly, it was probably the most pain that you ever felt in your life - I tell you what, why don't you say 'what' if you like to sleep with your own sister." HA HA!!!! "You remember that, don't you, Ric? Well let me tell you a little story in history - the year before in WrestleMania, I did the exact same thing to Triple H. You see, every time I wrestle Triple H, I beat his ass. I can't help it, I just do it. But now...you expect me to set back while you give that Undisputed title to Triple H. You know what that sounds like to me, Ric? It sounds like somebody's tryin' to show me up. It sounds like somebody's trying to disrespect me. And I TOLD you...if you drafted me number one, that I was gonna make every day of your life a WrestleMania moment. Well I guess it's about time I lived up to my promise." Glasses are already off...now the coat is off...and NOW the Game is on - or at least his music is, anyway...here comes THE MAN, WWF title around waist for the last time, WCW title over shoulder for the last time, water in hand, and shirt brought to you by Red Baron frozen pizza - Bring Home the Baron tonight(tm)! H joins the party in the ring, hands his belts to Flair in exchange for the microphone, but before he speaks, we ride out a "Tri Pull H" chant. "You know somethin', Dead Man...you're right. You DID beat me at WrestleMania last year. But that was then, and this is now. And right now, *I* AM The Undisputed World Wrestling Federation Champion. And I've got fifteen pounds of gold over there that says you can't beat my ass again." Taker thoughtfully scracthes his chin. "Is that right. Well I tell you what Mr. Undisputed Champion - why don't you put yo money where your mouth is? At Backlash, what do you say - me and you? For the belt." "Me and you at Backlash...the Undisputed title on the line...you're on. But I'll tell ya what...I can't see no point in waitin'. Why don't we do it right here, right now?" H throws down the mic and removes his shirt. Taker regards the situation...H takes another step forward and now they're standing nose to nose. And given the size of H's nose....sorry. "Backlash...will be just fine." Crowd boos - they want it now! But Taker is awesome and won't give it to them...slowly walking back over to Flair...taking the new title belt from him... "It's a time fine lookin' title right there. Hell it's even got your name on it, boy." Taker undoes the snaps. "So I tell you what..." Taker drapes the belt over H's shoulder. "Why don't you hold onto that....while you still can." Play "Rollin'!" Hey, you know what - that worked for me.


Ya know, with Mick Foley doing the VO on this TNN promo - I wonder if that's another gig for him...or just temporary. Hey by the way, aren't you SICK AND TIRED about hearing about Dee Snider's MSNBC voiceover gig? ENOUGH ALREADY DEE SNIDER is what *I* say! Yeah! Who's with me? Yeah! Yeah!


This Special Video Look "Behind the Scenes: Scorpion King" makes sure you get your dose of Rock on tonight's show anyway. It's coming 19 April!

TONIGHT: Trish vs. Terri - a Bikini/Paddle on a Pole Match! Has a slash ever been better placed? Lord have mercy!

HARDY BOYZ (Matt & Jeff - Cameron, North Carolina, 445 pounds - with RAW is brought to you by Mint Skittles - why don't they call 'em Minttles?, truth, and Burger King!) v. MR. PERFECT & BOSS MAN (Robbinsdale, Minnesota and Cobb County, Georgia - 567 pounds)
referee: Patrick
Good God, with that hairdo, I think Jeff must think he's Bjork or something. Ross never tells us where Lita is. The heels doubleteam to start, Boss Man tosses Jeff and goes out, leaving Perfect and Matt in the ring. Perfect puts Matt into the ropes - Matt ducks, gutshot, wants the Twist of Fate but Perfect shoves him to the ropes, where Boss Man is waiting to give him a hot shot. Perfect off the ropes with the rolling nack snap. Head to Boss Man's boot - and a tag. Boss Man right, right, hairpull toss out of the corner, uppercut, into the opposite corner, sidewalk slam, hooks the leg, and gets 2. Into the unfriendly corner - Perfect with a choke while Patrick finds a way to occupy himself with Jeff. Perfect tries hard to make sure Patrick sees his tag, then gives up and comes in. Field goal kick, kick, stomp, stomp, stomp, stomp, stomp, tag. Perfect holds Matt up for a running...punch from Boss Man. WOW! A PUNCH! Stomp, stomp, tag. Perfect right, right, Matt fights back with rights for Perfect and reverse elbows for Boss Man, but Perfect manages to grab him and and tag out one more time. Boss Man with a gutshot, Perfect with one more on his way out. Matt into the corner, Boss Man runs at him but ends up crotching himself...and hawking up a big loogie for added effect. Man, how many kinds of ugly can we have in one match? I suppose when Jeff gets the tag we can add another one. HOT TAG! Right, right, right, shove for Perfect, Boss Man into the ropes, flying clothesline, sitout jawbreaker for Perfect (bad sell for him), speaking in tongues double legdrop for Boss Man - Matt's back in to help Jeff with Perfect - into the opposite corner, Poetry in Motion coming up - and there you go. Perfect leaps out of the ring on that. Boss Man manages a Law'n'Order Kick to Jeff to turn things back his way. Into the ropes, BOSS MAN SLAM - leg is hooked - 1, 2, somehow Jeff gets the other leg over the bottom rope - no way. Boss Man puts Jeff on top...but Matt is back in with forearms to the back - whip is reversed, reversed back, there's a Twist of Fate out of nowhere besides that Boss Man doesn't know how to sell it, swantonbomb by Jeff as Matt sitout clotheslines Perfect - Patrick finally figures out Jeff's had a cover on Boss Man all this time AND they're the legal men - and counts a 1, 2, 3. (3:55) I believe that match can be best described as "gangly." Perfect wastes no time distancing himself from Boss Man - whoops, here's BROCK LESNAR with a double clothesline to the back of both Hardyz in mid-celebration. Spinebuster for Matt - Argentinian TKO - Jeff leaps from the top, but Lesnar catches the huracanrana attempt and gives Jeff a triple powerbomb from it. Did Ross just call him "the white Rhyno?" and I thought Rhyno was already white? Seeing PAUL E. HEYMAN pose with Lesnar just made me think "911 with four moves instead of one" - that's probably not where they want me to go with that, though. Ross says "Jeff got the hell powerbombed out of him...more times than Liza Minelli's been married." Hey, stay tuned - later tonight, he'll make a joke about Doc Severinsen's jacket.

Terri lotions up! Robe is on - and now she is WALKING (away so we can see her ass)!

The WWF Rewind is brought to you by Castrol Motor Oily! From SmackDown two weeks ago, Trish & Lita defeat Jazz & Ivory - do you take Trish seriously yet?

referee: JACK DOAN
Oh. Well NOW I'll take her seriously FOR SURE!! Seeing Terri skip makes ME skip! Is it wise to wrestle with a pierced navel? Who am I kidding - there won't be any wrestling in this match! There's the pole, there's the paddle. Yep. Trish lingers in removing her jacket, so Terri helps her out - then slaps her one. We're underway. Terri with a hairpull takedown. Stands over her back - rams her head into the mat five times. Make it six. Make it seven. Excuse me, I am TRYING to look at Terri's ASS. Head to the buckle. Terri walks over her back, then skips to the corner with the pole...but Trish grabs her - FACE FULLA STUFF, FACE FULLA STUFF - sorry Konnan, I just stole your line. Terri tries to reverse the powerbomb setup into a Frankensteiner (!) but Trish pulls her back up to shoulder level. Terri manages a right hand to the head to get back on her feet - slap in the face...walks into a gutshot by Stratus - there's a bulldog. That's probably the most technical move Terri can take - sure enough, Stratus adjusts her bikini bottom, then walks over to the corner and grabs the paddle. That's how you win. (1:17) But before she can use it, MOLLY HOLLY is out to boot Trish in the back - there's a hairpull takedown - now shoving Terri out of the ring with her boots. Molly with the paddle and a look of bad intentions...SHE BROKE THE PADDLE OVER TRISH'S HEAD! (Yikes!). No smiles as she walks off - I guess we need to take her seriously now. Here's a replay.

Outside, Vince continues to talk to me on his phone: "No no no, Austin hasn't arrived. I sent word - I've got faith he's gonna be here. Somehow I'm gonna get to him, I know damn well. I tried to get back into the building - a minute ago, I opened the door and that big seven foot goof was still standing there - what do you WANT me to do? I just know that somehow...somehow, I'm gonna get back in that building tonight. Somehow, I'm gonna make my case to Stone Cold. All right, I'll talk to you later. Yeah. It's cold." Vince back in the limo - hey don't forget the poor freezing cameraman!

Another Foley sighting for the "Robot Wars: Extreme Warriors" ad

And here's another "Scorpion King" ad - he comes for the woman...and your head

Drowning Pool's "The Game" is a track on the Forceable Entry CD - I know this because I'm watching this video clip snippet right here

Into WWF New York we go...

And now back to Ric Flair who interrupts his phone call (with ME) to talk to Steve Austin - hey, it's really Steve Austin! "Stone Cold Steve Austin...how are you?" Austin eventually takes the offered handshake. "I'm fine." "Been looking for you all night." "You got some time to talk to me?" "Anything?" "I'm just wondering why you're not letting Vince McMahon into the building." "I'm not letting him in the building because it's my show and I don't want to take the chance on him screwing it up." "You won't let him in the building." "No." "...I want you to let him in the building." "You want me to let Vince McMahon in this building tonight." "Yeah, I know all the crap the sumbitch has pulled...but I think it's only fair that I get a chance to listen to everything he's got to say. Right out of his mouth, Stone Cold Steve Austin can make his decision." "After all he's done to you..." "Hey - we all got a past to live down, don't we. Huh? I think it's fair that I listen to what the man has to say. So I tell you what we're gonna do. After this next match, you, me and Vince McMahon are gonna go to that ring - I'm gonna listen to what you got to say, what he's got to say, and I'm gonna make up my mind...right here tonight." He leaves before Flair can provide an answer...

Your hosts are a pair of kings - JIM ROSS & JERRY LAWLER.

Let Us Take You Back to SmackDown! where, to me, Kane was a HELL of a lot more "hilarious" before everyone else fell over themselves to TELL me how "hilarious" he was - also, Kane got the decision over X-Pac in the six-man main event...which naturally leads to

Hey! It's Kane! And he's WALKING! The RAW Zone is LIVE, or so says this graphic!

"WWF Divas 2002 Swimsuit Edition" magazine - in stores tomorrow! Unused slogan: YOU CAN BEAT OFF TO IT, SON

Big Show shills Stacker 2 - again

KANE (Parts Unknown, 326 pounds - with Forceable Entry CD cover...and Castrol Motor Oily presents Backlash - coming in twenty days!) v. X-PAC (Minneapolis, Minnesota, 212 pounds - with Scott Hall & Kevin Nash)
referee: E. Hebner
I think the person I feel most sorry for is Tori....well no, but. Nash takes a threatening step in Kane's direction, so of course he turns his head completely around, allowing X-Pac to put a forearm in the back and kick it off - forearm, right, kick trifecta. Chop, into the ropes is reversed, tilt-a-whirl by Kane to turn it around. Kane with an uppercut. Back elbow. Right hand. Into the opposite corner - X-Pac gets a boot up. 'Pac runs into a kick. Big press....hold....and slam by Kane. Uppercut sends 'Pac reeling. Into the ropes, 'Pac ducks, Kane catches the kick, then catches the enzuigiri to the side of the head. Kick by 'Pac, kick, chop, chop, right, chop, NO SALE. Whip into the corner is reversed, follow clothesline by Kane - lifted into the one-arm sidewalk slam. Kane going up top - Hall on the apron - Kane looks his way, which is just long enough of a distraction for X-Pac to run to the corner and leap into an overhead dropkick that puts Kane on the floor. While X-Pac discusses the Israeli/Palestinian conflict with Hebner, Hall makes his way round to give Kane three right hands. 'Pac with a pescado - but Kane catches him...but 'Pac manages to go down the back and shove him into Nash's big boot. "Suck on that, Kane - suck on that!" 'Pac back in the ring, where it's HIS turn to keep Hebner's back to Kane - Hall runs him into the STEEL steps. We take a Castrol replay of Nash's boot - it's the only move he's doing tonight, folks, so savor it! Kane staggers back into the ring, where Pac drops the forearm - three times. Kane back up - right by 'Pac. Right, right, right, right. Kane fires back with an uppercut, right, into the ropes, 'Pac ducks, spinning heel kick connects - 'Pac covers - 1, 2, Kane kicks 'Pac out through the ropes to the floor! Oops, got too close to Hall - Hall with ANOTHER right hand. 'Pac's been climbing the corner - big missile dropkick!! 'Pac is pleased with himself, but he's not looking in the right place, 'cause otherwise he'd see Kane with a ZOMBIE SETUP - I MEAN SITUP! Kane with "Iblockyourpunchyoudon'tblockmine," right, into the corner, 'Pac steps aside and Kane hits the corner. Overhead kick by 'Pac, kick, kick, kick, kick, steps on the throat for 3 - Hebner muscles him off. While they chat, Hall tugs on the hair to keep him there until 'Pac can hit the broncobuster. Again, 'Pac has a short-lived celebration...Kane pulls himself up a la Page, then barrels over 'Pac with a clothesline. Clothesline. Into the ropes - press...and drop. Into the ropes, 'Pac ducks, Kane catches the spin kick - up onto the shoulder, powerslammed down. Off the ropes - no, Hall grabs his ankle so he has to stop. 'Pac runs in but Kane gets up the big boot. Now Kane goes outside - uppercut for Hall!! Kane climbs the corner - there's the "flying" clothesline for X-Pac. Chokeslam coming up...nope, Hall in to save and that'll be the NWO ending one more time. (DQ 5:32) Nash is also in and it's two on one...until BRADSHAW comes out - punch for you, punch for you, chop for you, punch for you, back and forth we go - Kane puts X-Pac out while Bradshaw punches Nash and Hall until they roll out. Play the APA's music! Hahahaha Kane's pyro didn't work, how bush league - they missed the lighting/pyro cue but at least they hit the music cue. Kane looks rather annoyed - at least as annoyed as you can be while you're wearing a mask. Commentators suggest that Kane and Bradshaw now have bullseyes on their chests and they'll be NWO targets. THIS IS A BIG MONEY FEUD FOLKS

Vince McMahon is allowed in - allowed in so that we may see him WALKING!

Tough Enough 2 ad

Hmm, Foley's doing VO on *this* ad, too - hey I think we're onto something here. You know who I always hated on voiceovers? Penn Gillette for Comedy Central - MAN he sucked. I was ready to write in offering to work FOR FREE if only they'd lose him...then I remembered that I wasn't anybody famous and they wouldn't give a crap if I offered to work for free, so I didn't.

WWF Shop Zone Dot Come ad

RIC FLAIR is in the ring when we get back. "Ladies and gentlemen, I told you earlier tonight that the RAW brand would make a contractual offer to Stone Cold Steve Austin - Austin that would ensure the services of Stone Cold to the RAW brand forever. It is now my privilege to introduce--" BILLIONAIRE VINCE makes his entrance (with music and video) at this point, probably *not* whom Flair was intending to introduce. Vince seems pretty happy. "Well Ric what's the story? You seem a little upset, Ric. Are you upset because Austin himself insisted - insisted I come out here? You're upset about that, right? Are you prepared to LOSE again, Ric? Just a couple of things to set you straight, pal. You know what Austin's lookin' for, he's lookin' for leadership. He's lookin' for business savvy. I'd like to remind you and everyone else that it was my intellectual sperm - you heard me, I said it was my intellectual sperm - that fertilized the egg known then as professional wrestling and then became what is now known as modern-day sports entertainment. See, it was my business acumen, Mr. Flair, some sixteen years ago if I recall in which I could see into the future - I could see that not only would WWF fans come to a live WWF event, but they could stay at home and watch these mega-events on something then known - or not known until I made it famous - pay per view. That was me, Ric, that wasn't you. When you were bustin' your ass takin' backdrops over the top rope, that was ME, Ric. It was me who recognised that the World Wrestling Federation wouldn't be just a national phenomenon. No, I recognised, me (Vince McMahon) that the World Wrestling Federation would be a living, breathing, global brand of entertainment. Me, not you. Those are the things that Stone Cold Steve Austin is contemplating before he comes out here and signs this contract, Ric. And, quite frankly, it was also me who recognised maybe that the Ringmaster wasn't gonna cut it and it was me who introduced Stone Cold Steve Austin, himself. So you see, Ric, that's why Austin, tonight, will sign MY SmackDown! contract, and be exclusive to--" The sound of breaking glass interrupts and brings out STONE COLD STEVE AUSTIN - hmm, no Forceable Entry track for Austin HAH? - and four corners for Austin, Vince applauding the whole time. Flair offers Austin his mic - Austin opts to get his own. "First of all, allow me, allow me to say I LIKE THAT T-SHIRT!" "First of all, let me say I don't give a rat's ass about your intellectual sperm! You got a contract for me?" "Yes sir, I do." "You got a contract for Stone Cold?" "Yes, I do." "You want me to leave RAW? Join SmackDown! - walk away from Ric Flair - walk away from the Nature Boy - tell him no - tell you yes - that's what you want. Say something, you can say something, you want him to say something? I wanna hear what you got to say - say something..." "I want you--" "...anything - these people - will let you say something--" "SHUT UP DAMMIT!" "What?" Ross makes a reference to Gino Ariemo and even *I* can't figure out who the hell he's talking about - must be an Oklahoman in-joke. We move from a "What?" chant to an "Asshole" chant. Ross: "Lotta woooo's, King." "I don't know how good your hearin' is, but you got about twelve thousand people calling you an asshole right now." Oops, Austin doesn't usually undermine GOOD OL' JR like that. "And you want me to come out here and forget about all the hell you put me through. You made my life a living hell. You had me beat up, jumped from behind, arrested, you humiliated me, made me look like a jackass. And I'm gonna forget about that." Turns to Flair. "And you want me to sign that contract, don't you, Ric Flair?" "Yes." "You do?" "Yes." "You do?" "Yes." "What?" "Yes." "What?" "Yes." "What?" "Yes." "What?" "Yes." "What? You want me to sign that contract, don't you?" "He interrupted you, that son of a bitch. You don't interrupt Stone Cold Steve Austin!" "Shut up. Did you get a chance to see this (flips him the bird)? Now I will say that I am intrigued by both offers. But when I sit there and I think about it - and I got respect for you, as many times as you were world champion, I respect that. I respect what you've done for the world of professional wrestling. What you've done with the World Wrestling Federation. The success that I had when you were the boss - I respect that - because I was successful - I was a bad son of a bitch - and I still am - a bad son of a bitch - so, uhh...you want me to put my name on that contract? Put 'er there. I'll sign the contract, you got a deal." "You're gonna sign with me?" "You're damn right I'm gonna sign with you, you got a deal." They shake hands. "This is something you'll never regret. Stone Cold is now the exclusive property of WWF SmackDown!" Austin turns to Flair. "I wanna say to you first and to your face so there's no problems between you and me: no disrespect. Business is business." They shake hands. "You got a pen." "Yes sir, I've got a pen, I dropped it over here, I hope you don't mind." "Pick it up." "As far as no hard feelings are concerned, I hope, Mr. Flair, you don't have any hard feelings on the fact that Stone Cold saw the light." "McMahon, I'm always gonna hate your guts." "That's just too damn bad, Ric." "Where'm I supposed to sign that?" "That'd be on the last page. There we go." "This is all official, right?" "That's exactly right?" "I'll be on SmackDown!?" "Exclusive property of SmackDown!" "Pay starts right now?" "Your pay starts tonight." "Cheques are comin' in the mail." "Unless you want cash." "Stone Cold Steve Austin and Vince McMahon? I got one other thing I was gonna tell you about...this contract and tonight...April Fool." KICK WHAM STUNNER! Play his music! Flair acts like he's seen the glory. "All right! This is it! This is it! Stone Cold! Stone Cold is on RAW! Stone Cold is on RAW - where's the beer?" Flair outside, and back in with the Igloo. Beer Austin, beer Flair - that's a big swig, and a kneedrop on the beer to boot. Flair with another beer woooo! "Stone Cold is on RAW! Woooo!" Austin hasn't drank yet. "Woooo!" Flair downs another one...and pours a bit on Vince. "Stone - Cold - is on RAW - woooo!" Strut. Flair with another can - another swig - another strut. Off the ropes - strut - DO IT AUSTIN DO IT - Flair with a WOOOO! in Austin's face...another strut - another swig - FINALLY KICK WHAM STUNNER FLAIR Play his music again! Austin signs the RAW contract (I think - that sure is a lot of writing!) and puts the contract on Flair's chest. Austin to a corner and FINALLY he downs a beer. Another corner, another beer. Vince is just about back to his feet. Austin hands him a beer and lets him look at it just long enough to go "hey I'm holding onto a beer OH NO IT'S ANOTHER KICK WHAM STUNNER" Austin to a third corner as the RAW Zone credits come up - and we're out. There's the WWF logo.

Okay, NOW I think I'm ready to give this thing a chance. There was so much more "done this right" tonight than we've had for quite a while. It just makes you wonder why they didn't do some of it SOONER?


SMACKDOWN RECAP: Bonding Exercises
RAW RECAP: The New Guy Blows It
PPV RECAP: WWE Night of Champions 2012
RAW RECAP: The Show Must Go On
SMACKDOWN RECAP: The Boot Gets the Boot
RAW RECAP: Heyman Lands an Expansion Franchise
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Losing is the new Winning
RAW RECAP: Say My Name
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Deja Vu All Over Again
RAW RECAP: Dignity Before Gold?
PPV RECAP: SummerSlam 2012
RAW RECAP: Bigger IS Better
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Hitting with Two Strikes
RAW RECAP: Heel, or Tweener?
RAW RECAP: CM Punk is Not a Fan of Dwayne
SMACKDOWN RECAP: The Returnening
RAW RECAP: Countdown to 1000
PPV RECAP: WWE Money in the Bank 2012
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Friday Night ZackDown
RAW RECAP: Closure's a Bitch
RAW RECAP: Crazy Gets What Crazy Wants
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Five Surprising MitB Deposits
RAW RECAP: Weeeellll, It's a Big MitB
RAW RECAP: Johnny B. Gone
PPV RECAP: WWE No Way Out 2012
RAW RECAP: Crazy Go Nuts
RAW RECAP: Be a Star, My Ass
RAW RECAP: You Can't See Him
RAW RECAP: Big Johnny Still in Charge
PPV RECAP: WWE Over the Limit 2012
SMACKDOWN RECAP: One Gullible Fella
RAW RECAP: Anvil, or Red Herring?
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Everybody Hates Berto
RAW RECAP: Look Who's Back
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Care to go Best of Five?
RAW RECAP: An Ace Up His Sleeve
PPV RECAP: WWE Extreme Rules 2012
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Sh-Sh-Sheamus and the nOObs
RAW RECAP: Edge, the Motivational Speaker?
SMACKDOWN RECAP: AJ is Angry, Jilted
RAW RECAP: Maybe Cena DOES Suck?
RAW RECAP: Brock's a Jerk
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Back with a Bang
RAW RECAP: Yes! Yes! Yes!
PPV RECAP: WWE WrestleMania 28




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