Welcome to the first issue of Monday Night Recall. We’re on a journey together where we’ll hop in the way back machine and relive the days of the Monday Night War. Each week there will be a poll on the official Wrestlaholic Twitter account where the readers will get to decide the year we visit.
The focus of each issue will be that specific weeks episode. The issues will be broken up into two parts so each show can get focused on. So now that we’ve got that out of the way, let’s get to the wrestling!
Monday Night RAW:
The first stop on our trip will bring us to Monday Night RAW, which took place on 8/19/96, as there wasn’t an episode on 8/26. This is back when RAW was still only an hour so this should breeze right by! The show opens with a quick recap from the previous night’s Summer Slam with an emphasis on the Boiler Room Brawl and Paul Bearer turning on Undertaker. Our announce team tonight is Jerry Lawler, Kevin Kelly, and Jim Ross.
Owen Hart vs. British Bulldog:
Our opening match kicks off the Intercontinental Title Tournament and sees Owen Hart face off against The British Bulldog. Davey is quick to use his strength advantage and he’s knocked Owen quickly to the outside.
Bulldog is using his power game to absolutely stifle anything Owen wants to get going. Big Gorilla Press Slam by Smith for a two count. During the match some static starts to play itself on the screen and it’s definitely not a technical difficulty as the announcers made too much of a scene about it.
Davey Boy is still in full control of the match and hits his patented Powerslam on Owen but Hart is able to get his foot on the rope at two. Sunny makes her way to ringside and both men take their turn getting distracted. She says she’s out here to try and offer her managerial services to Owen and Davey in an attempt to steal them away from Jim Cornette.
Owen Hart is finally able to get a stream of momentum and even gets Smith locked in the Sharpshooter. Davey Boy breaks the hold with the rope and after some strikes Owen dumps him to the outside. Bulldog follows it up by suplexing Owen to the floor. And as the two brawl on the floor, Owen tosses Davey into the announce table and is able to sneak in the ring and steal the count out victory.
Winner: Owen Hart
Vader is out here to kill Freddy Joe Floyd. Vader gets into Mark Henry’s face prior to this squash. Vader quickly disposes of Floyd with a power offense and pair of Vader Bombs. One again during the match we had some static and audio issues.
Paul Bearer-Mankind Interview Segment:
Paul Bearer and Mankind are on the way to the ring to talk with Jim Ross. Remember, at Summer Slam the night before Paul Bearer turned on Undertaker and helped Mankind defeat the Deadman. Bearer says he is sick and tired of carrying the Undertaker to all of his success.
Mankind lets Ross know that he will destroy Shawn Michaels in their WWF Championship match at In Your House: Mind Games. Mankind and Bearer are both very nervous and paranoid as the lights continue to flicker.
The gong hits, the lights go black, and the druids are carrying the Undertaker into the arena. Bearer continues to tear down the Undertaker as his lifeless body is being brought to the ring. The Undertaker sits up and the gong crashes! Taker stands up, shoots fire out of the ring posts and gets in the ring to the delight of the crowd.
We get a super creepy Barry Windham vignette.
Last Chance Battle Royal: Goldust vs. Savio Vega vs. Stone Cold vs. Sycho Sid (Winner gets a WWF Championship match at WWF Championship Friday):
All three men gang up instantly on Sid and eliminate him right after the bell. But Sid storms back into the ring and Chokeslams the remaining three contenders. Stone Cold is like a house of fire and he is stomping a mudhole in both Vega and Goldust.
During the commercial break Goldust is almost eliminated and as we come back he is in control of the match. Goldust nearly gets eliminated again but holds on for his life. Stone Cold is tossed over the rope and it looks like his feet hit but he runs back into the ring just to get thrown out again.
We’re down to Goldust and Savio Vega with a shot at Shawn Michaels and the WWF Championship on the line. Savio gets a head of steam and goes for the win only for Goldust to duck a lariat and send Vega to the floor.
We get another Summer Slam recap video.
Yokozuna vs. Shawn Michaels:
Jim Cornette has reconciled with his former charge Yokozuna and will be in his corner to continue his crusade against HBK. We’re still in full “boyhood dream,” mode here and Shawn has his mentor Jose Lothario in his corner.
Shawn uses some quick strikes and the ropes to teeter the big man and finally knocks Yoko down. Cornette makes his way to ringside and decks Lothario with his legendary tennis raquet. This is enough to distract Michaels and give Yokozuna the advantage.
Michaels is able to avoid the big splash and he goes into this legendary sequence with the Flying Forearm and Diving Elbow. Yoko catches Sweet Chin Music and plants the champion with a Samoan Drop.
Michaels rolls out of the way of a massive Leg Drop to put surprise Yokozuna with Sweet Chin Music.
Winner: Shawn Michaels
RAW ends by recapping that Michaels’ next two challengers have been set and he will be running into Goldust and Mankind very soon.
Stay tuned for the next chapter where I breakdown a Nitro from the same week!