By Chokee Slam
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Worchester, Massachusetts

It's a new year!!!! ……………..GOOD GOD, it's another fraggin' year.

This Raw was one of the best, most fully packed episodes in a long while. It opens with a flashback of Shawn Michael's career of multiple costumes and hair changes, which I believe lands him in Mad Phat's category of 'New Packaging'. There definitely has been an improvement. I mean, he held onto that mullet for dear life but finally wised up. raw001.jpg (16712 bytes)
Corporate Team enters. Vinnie tells the tech guys to take 'that sentimental crap' off. Hey Vinnie, you're not much of a boss if you can't even control what is played on the titantron or the cueing of wrestler's entrance themes.. (Personally, I think it's just a natural phenomenon that wrestlers' music plays... like it plays whenever they enter any  room, even in their own house ... B.C.)

Testes comes out in 'tighter than necessary' boy leg briefs and his kneepads on his shins. Soon those pads will multiply due to a condition called AhmedJohnsonitis; a rare disease which leaves you with about six pairs of knee pads all over your legs. I think you better go back to the leather chinos. Meanwhile Crisco and Patterson are taping a sign to Kane's back which keeps falling off on one side. On top of that, it just says, 'Brisco Bros. Body Shop.' A crummy commercial? If you're going to put something on his back, it should at least be funny. The always classic, 'kick me' or 'this is an exit, not an entrance' (with a huge arrow pointing to his butt). Is that suitable for family television??

Vinnie states that anyone who had anything to do with the emotional scarring of his Shane will pay.

Shawn enters to his 'sexy booooy' entrance theme. You know that theme died in the 80's right? Shawn then does that hand motion of thumb cutting across neck which symbolizes a quick death or to cut something. It will always mean 'I cut myself shaving, it was a mess' in our warped little minds. Shawn calls upon DX, his cavalry, and says that his contract as commissioner is iron clad. As per Vince's statement, Shawn will answer to no one including Vinnie Mac. Austin is the only one he would have no control over.

We see that Vinnie Mac has this chasm-like dent in his chin. We wonder how he shaves in there.

Since Shawn has control over all competitors and since Vinnie entered into the Royal Rumble as a competitor, Vinnie is now declared second man into the ring. Shane confusingly looked at Shawn like, 'WHUH?'. Let me reiterate, 'SHANE! YOUR POPS… SECOND IN THE RING.. ROYAL RUMBLE! NUMBER TWO!! HE'S GONNA GET KNOCKED OUT!!!!!' I hope he understood that.

Finally, Shawn has a little surprise for Vince AND guarantees it will drive him Stone Cold Crazy. That's a good song. Both the original Queen recording and Metallica cover. Good spastic epileptic head shaking type of song.

Vinnie confers with his Team. Kane stands there and I know he wears a mask, but he looked stone faced. Okay, stone masked. Or he was thinking, 'where's that roast beef you guys promised me?' True true, the man must eat to maintain that massive build.

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As Kenny Shamrock enters the ring, he stares into the camera with authority. It seemed he was going to walk right INTO the cameraman though. I had mentioned this before but I think it's nearly confirmed that the cameraman and Kenny have made a love connection. The cameraman ALWAYS films Kenny's EGGPLANT zone (I hope it's not purple) AND the butt zone as well. During a match, there will always be a close-up of Kenny's tail end. Well, considering Kenny is pretty tight, I guess we don't blame you. I wouldn't be as inconspicuous. If I was operating that camera, I'd have footage of his colon. OH. Sorry that was disgusting.
Kenny vs Steve Blackman. During the match, Dan Severn comes out wearing the neck brace which has a sticker on it. At first we thought it might say, 'put fabric softener in here..' but it said, 'No Neck'. I didn't notice this at first viewing because Dan was wearing his awfully bright colored striped shirt. I was waiting for Skittles to rain down upon him. I wonder if he had batteries for that thing. raw003.jpg (21167 bytes)
Surprisingly, it took about five minutes for Kenny to notice Dan. How could you miss him? His shirt was equivalent to a police siren. Dan interferes in the match, allowing Billy Butt to run in and let Kenny have it. Blackman wins! Kenny's utterly confused expression was saying, 'did you?…. he?? … whuh??.. oooh..'
Backstage, Kenny catches up with Billy Butt and they're rolling on the floor expressing their true love for each other in the utmost form of physical love. No.. just kidding. It looked like Kenny genuinely popped Billy in the face (near the nose and eye area). We assume it was real because Billy HOWLED like a woman and held his face immediately after that. Mm, how would you fare in UFC, Billy? Hey Kenny, watch it, tough guy. Stop thinking about us Mad Phat chicks when you're acting. raw004.jpg (19108 bytes)
Mankind enters the ring. He states that last week was the 'first time I ever grabbed a man's testicles. And in a rugged, manly way, I enjoyed it.' And it was 'the first time I ever used the words suck it without a please in front of it.' HWAAAARR!! The audience was howling and Mankind tops it off by saying, 'you like that huh?' Damn right. So basically he wants a shot at the Rock's title.



You call yourself a fan?? What the hell is a MANDKIND?

Vinnie stands atop the ramp and says, 'the corporate team is right behind me.' Actually no one was behind you, Vinny. What are you, mental? I bet they were all hovering around the water cooler and the deli tray. Maybe there was chicken cordon bleu that night.

Vinnie questions why Mankind will put his body through torture, go through lonely nights in seedy hotels, etc.. for the 'roar' of the crowd?? Mankind says, 'I like that roar.' We love you Mick. Eventually, Vinnie sets up the Mankind vs. HHH match with Shane as special referee. The winner goes to Royal Rumble. Hey Vinnie, I thought Shawn was the commissioner? (SSSSSSSHHHH.. B.C.). raw005.jpg (20555 bytes)
Backstage we see Chyna conversing with this HORRID looking drag queen. Living in New York, I have seen much better drag queens who know how to package themselves. Hey WWF people, couldn't you have found someone better?? Kabuki?? Helena Handbasket?? Lily of the Valley?? They're much prettier.

Mark Henry vs. Goldust. Yet again, we see another wrestler have an embarassing SPLIT in the seam of his pants. First Gangrel, now poor Goldie (who thankfully, was wearing underwear). There needs to be an upgrading of tailors!!! Also we have a theory that the new LARGER cups that wrestlers are wearing could possibly be causing this plague of split seams.

During this match, Chyna and her boyfriend (though they call him her girlfriend) come out. Henry gets the 'shattered dreams' which pretty much reduced the 'sexual chocolate' to 'sexual pudding'. Blech. So the two 'girls' make their way to the ring to comfort Henry. The drag queen is named Sammy and he's about the lumpiest she-man in a sausage dress I e'er did see. One angle, I thought he was wearing Birkenstocks. At least that would have taken my focus off his lumpy legs and pot belly. raw006.jpg (22867 bytes)
Chyna tells Henry, 'the other night with you were incredible. You're way too much man for one woman..' So she proclaims that she and Sammy will take a load off Henry's mind. That's a big load, Chyna, I don't think fifty drag queens will suffice. You'll need a back-ho.

Godfather vs. Testes (who resembles Thor). Testes also has some crappy entrance theme music. You figure someone who was in the rock and roll industry would be able to get some GOOD music to enter to. Like some palm-muting chugga chugga power chord riffs with screeching string bending harmonics. (Sorry, I'm showing off.)

Venis comes out onto the ramp while the match is in progress, to show everyone the zit on his tit. Then as usual, Venis runs in to the match.. only to have Testes beat up on him. Haven't you learned??

Backstage, Michaels is mucking it up with DX perhaps talking about old times, the bars they frequented, the cities they've traveled to, the tittie bars, the orgies with each other. Oh. Chyna and X-Pac were standing so close to each other that I thought X-Pac's head was on Chyna's body. And I thought, 'X-Pac, why are you wearing those leather hot pants?? And a bra?? (well, on a guy, it'd be a BRO).'  (It'd be a Mansierre... B.C.)

HHH vs. Mankind with special ref Shane. Shane kicks Mankind causing HHH to pin Mankind as Shane gives a fast count. At least HHH says, 'a win is a win and HHH will take it any way he can get it.' Honesty is good. BUT he pedigrees Shane after wishing Mankind a 'happy new year' and from then on, Shane is all Mankind's. Mankind holds Shane hostage by putting him in a shoulder submission move, which causes Vince to set a match for Mankind vs. Rock without DQ.



If he's your idol, CAN'T YOU SPELL HIS NAME RIGHT???!! And you have to put a TRADEMARK logo after his name too. And just for those who care, Undertaker seems to be the only registered trademark name in the WWF.

We also catch sight of someone who looks like Stuttering John Melendez holding a sign that says:


Of course, it wasn't Stuttering John because if it was, the sign would have read 'M-M-M-M-Mankind is G-G-G-G-God'.

So the Mankind vs. Rock match is a closed deal. Rock screams, 'I'm not ready!' Oh, just throw on your panties and you're all set.

Edge enters the ring through the audience again, wearing sunglasses. Again, I stress it's hard to see indoors with sunglasses on. It wouldn't be a surprise if you stumbled over everyone's chair and there would just be a loss of dignity on your part. All because of vanity.

Edge vs. D'Lo. PMS comes out while the match is in progress and Terri gets into an argument with D'Lo which causes her to fall off the top of the steel steps and.. end of her pregnancy storyline. (Her storyline had a miscarriage... B.C.) However we have to endure the torture of her wailing and horrible acting as she tells the paramedics to 'please hurry'. Yes, please hurry and end this storyline. D'Lo however, acts genuinely concerned and even Edge looks at D'Lo like, 'Ooooh, you did a bad!' raw007.jpg (18030 bytes)
Actually I bet Edge was waiting for the blood to come out from the 'miscarriage' so he could bathe in it. BLECH! That was one of the worst things I EVER wrote in my history of Raw reports.

Kane enters the ring with Brisco and Patterson who are STILL trying to stick that sign on his back. Shane announces the next match which will be a handicap match. For some reason, Bostin thought someone with a wheelchair will start rolling down the ramp.. or a blind person. (I thought he'd have to take on two blind midgets in wheelchairs... OH!  ... B.C.)

Turns out it's Kane vs. Patterson and Brisco. As Kane levels Brisco down to the mat, Patterson tries to offer Kane a cigarette, and then a condom??? What are you trying to say, Patterson?? He doesn't do dat dink (at least not with you!). Patterson then tries to hit Kane with a chair but is caught in mid-act. Instead he unfolds the chair and offers Kane a seat. raw008.jpg (22203 bytes)
Kane KICKS the chair out of the ring. In a mighty cool visual, the chair disappears off camera in about a split second. The chair didn't even fold up, it just FLEW! I wonder if Kane made any expressions under the mask, like, 'OOH! I impress myself!!' Of course there's the possibility that the chair landed in the audience, either killing them or impaling them. But in the least, they experienced a very good Raw show.  (It's a good thing this wasn't a PPV, or that chair would have crushed the French announcers... B.C.)

Kane manages to crotch Brisco between the ringpost before he grabs Shane who starts to scream, 'NO!!' Should have yelled, 'DOWN BOY!! DOWN!! You'll get the muzzle!' Well, that wouldn't work.. However they threatened Kane with a trip to the asylum again.

Brisco is still wedged in between the ringpost even after Kane has left. He must have liked it.

Dennis Knight's arms are strung up in chains as he whines for someone to help him. You should have just asked the cameraman, dude. But the Acolytes unchain him and throw him into a large room with bright light and dry ice. Knight should have screamed, 'PLEASE MR. SIMMONS! MR. BRAD SHAW!! DON'T DO THIS!' Knight is thrown in the room which sounds like it's filled with screaming, wailing psychotics. It was probably a room full of traveling encyclopedia salesmen. Or postal workers. Either way, go into the light, Carol Ann, don't be afraid of the light. raw009.jpg (14620 bytes)
Al Snow vs. Road Dogg for the Hardcore Belt. One of the best matches of the evening. They're still trying to convince us that Al hasn't showered in two weeks. BUT Al's hair was clean. He probably just stuck his head under a sink then.
Thankfully, Al bopped Dogg before he could start with his speech. This match had everything including tables, a cookie sheet, chair.. and then gets carried backstage where they used a hose, a whole box of toilet paper, a broom, a fire extinguisher that didn't work, poinsettias (that looked like it hurt), poles (Al twirls one around Shaolin style). Then Dogg throws Al into three appropiately placed empty beer kegs. Austin must have gotten his hand on those already. Then the match gets taken outside the arena, where it's snowing. raw010.jpg (22417 bytes)
Dogg piledrives Al onto some boards and retains the belt. Al is left outside, on his back with his legs sticking up in the air (like a dead roach… B.C.). Hey, I hope you guys didn't lock Al outside!! Some crazed girl may have jumped on him.. or asked for his autograph ('pleeeeease pleeeeease pleeeeease, sign my head!!').
HHH gives Shawn the car keys and gives him.. the final hug. Shawn leaves and X-pac says, 'What goes around comes around.'   (HHH should have kissed him on the cheek and said 'Fredo, I know it was you... B.C.)

Turns out it's the wrong keys. Shawn tries to get back into the arena and.. a voice from behind him calls out, 'SHAWN!' Cut to commercial.

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Back from commercial. Shawn turns around. 'Hey what's up, guys??' and the Corporate Team beats up on him. At least this is what they want us to believe. Ya see, the camera was knocked down onto its side and all we hear is the 'carnage' off camera. I bet they were all standing around in a circle, punching pillows, hitting the car, twisting fresh celery sticks, emitting the incidental 'OOF', 'AARGH' noises. Shawn must have ripped open his own shirt.. and then placed his head nicely into the cracked windshield of the rent-a-car for the next scene. raw012.jpg (14295 bytes)
...And ACTION! The paramedics peel Shawn off the windshield, and attempt to put a neck brace on him. They tug on his hair and this is when Shawn winces in pain. They must have done that really annoying 'three hair tug'. Those normally hurt more than a full yank of hair. Like a paper cut is more annoying that a large bloody scrape.

So they take Shawn away in the ambulance. We see Shawn lieing in there, perhaps saying, 'So… we getting some pizza later?? That was a mighty damn fine piece of acting, wouldn't you say? I think the girls would love that. Actually, drop me off at Denny's.'

Mankind vs. Rock. DX and the Corporate Team are at ringside to support their men.

Mankind gets rock bottomed onto the announcer's table and caused pencils to scatter in disarray ALL over the floor. Oh, the humanity.

Kenny interferes in the match, hitting Mankind with a chair, causing Billy Butt to run in and throw himself AND Kenny outside the ring. Billy takes a running leap ONTO Kenny in yet another act of love and affection. Sorry. Actually, he probably had to really get back at him for hitting him in the face earlier in the show.

While the melee ensued outside the ring, the camera cuts to a full shot of the arena and we hear Austin's glass breaking entrance theme. The entire audience JUMPED up at the same time which was a pretty incredible visual.

Austin comes in advertising his NEW Austin shirt. Oh.. he clocks Rock with the chair, then drapes Mankind over him, leaves the ring, ('Gotta go, bye!') and MANKIND WINS!! The WWF site already released this spoiler before airing the RAW episode but this was still a highly entertaining RAW.

As Austin leaves, Testes is looking at him, with his mouth open in an 'O' shape (ooh.. new marketing idea.. inflatable Testes dolls! After all, he is a pretty .. woman..heh) and he must have been thinking, 'Who WAS that unknown man? He was super! I think I'm in love. Is he a wrestler? I haven't even seen him wrestle yet!' Then Testes snapped out of it, closed his mouth and descended upon reality again.

Cole says 'Mankind may not be the best looking..' Hey, Cole, he's better looking than you!! And to boot, he has more personality in his little finger than you have in your whole body.

Mankind states, 'this feels damn good!' Shane responds by screaming, 'AAAAAAAAAAAAH!! (and then with more conviction..) AAAAAAAAAAAH!!!' You and Kenny must converse often.

Mankind dedicates the belt to his two little people at home and screams, 'Big Daddy-o did it!' and he proceeds to run around the ring holding the belt up high.

Too sweet. It's so sweet my molars are disintegrating.

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Congratulations Mick, you deserve it and so much more!

Chokee.. gushing.

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