Online World of Wrestling Fan Jam 10/2006
Short Columns by Obsessed Fans
The History Of RAW Part 1: WWF Monday Night RAW - by Jordan Mohan
WWF Monday Night RAW first aired on January 11th, 1993 as an hour long show on the USA Network. The original RAW broke new ground in televised professional wrestling. The first episode featured Yokozuna defeating Koko B Ware, The Steiner Brothers defeating The Executioners, Intercontinental champion Shawn Michaels defeating Max Moon, and The Undertaker defeating Damian Demento. The show also featured an interview with Razor Ramon.
RAW Started in the The Grand Ballroom at Manhattan Center Studios, a New York City theater and aired live each week. However, the weekly live schedule proved to be a financial drain on the WWF, and taped shows began airing every other week. RAW was shown live on Monday and then the next day they taped the next weeks. RAW was shown live one week and was taped the next from early 1994 to September 1999.
The story lines and characters during the early years of RAW still had a healthy dose of the old federation cartoon style. For instance, there were moments such as Irwin R. Schyster tearing up Tatanka's headdress, the various "Undertaker sightings"; and characters like Duke "The Dumpster" Droese, Doink the Clown, or Thurman "Sparky" Plugg.
RAW was also one of a kind, in which they covered the unexpected, exciting moments, a prelude to the "Attitude Era", in which it coined RAW as "Uncut, Uncooked, Uncensored". Some of those moments include Razor Ramon losing a match unexpectedly to Sean "The 1-2-3 Kid" Waltman, who was later known as X-Pac, Marty Jannetty beating Shawn Michaels to win the WWE Intercontinental Title, and RAW was also the first WWF television program of any kind to show footage of Lex Luger Body-slamming Yokozuna at the U.S.S. Intrepid.
The original hosts of RAW were Vince McMahon, "Macho Man" Randy Savage, and Rob Bartlett. Sean Mooney conducted the interviews and Bobby "The Brain" Heenan also helped contribute. Later in 1993, Rob Bartlett was dropped from the broadcasting team and was replaced by Bobby Heenan. Then on December 6, 1993, Gorilla Monsoon "kicked Bobby Heenan out of the WWF forever." After about a year, RAW moved out of the Manhattan Center and traveled to various regular federation venues in the United States.
I hope you enjoyed reading part 1 of this column and I hope you enjoy part 2 when I write about the Monday Night Wars!
Saturn Is A Hero - by Aaron Giles
Many men have overcome so much to get back in the ring. Kurt Angle after many injuries. Chris Benoit with a severe neck injury. Triple H's quad snapping. But none had such a hard path to get back into the ring as Perry Saturn.
In 2004 still wrestling after a release from WWF in 2002, Saturn would have to face one of his hardest journeys back to the ring yet. He was driving his girlfriend to work when he saw two men trying to rape a girl. He wasted no time stepping out of his car and coming to the rescue. He fought with the men and saved the girl but it wasn't all good news. Saturn felt a burning sensation in his neck; he had been shot 3 times there.
He now has a steel plate along with three stainless steel screws where his C-5, C-6 and C-7 vertebrae are. Now under these conditions alot of men would call it quits but not Saturn. Against all odds he began training extensively to get back into the ring after his huge injury. How incredible is that? After 3 gun shots in the neck not only is he standing he's ready to get back into the ring and continue what he loves to do. Unfortunately he had to pull out from Hardcore Homecoming because of his injury but no doubt the man is still interested in what he does best apart from saving the day.
I believe this man is a true hero, he risked his life and came out of it with three bullets. He's a hero and he didn't do it for personal gain, he did it because there was someone who needed help and Saturn delivered. I hope this man can step back into the ring one day with his injuries fully behind him because he deserves it after what has happened.
Scotty 2 Hotty
My article is about one of the most under-appreciated wrestlers in the WWE today. Look at what they have cruiserweight wise on SmackDown! right now; Jimmy Wang Yang, Funaki, Greg Helms, (possibly Matt Hardy) and a few others. How often do you see these guys go over with the crowd? I don't know about you, but I see it alot. The cruiserweights are always the ones that get the crowd excited do to their astounding move sets and incredible energy.
However, there is one superstar that I think has not been found to be a huge asset to the WWE and I feel he is being overlooked. That superstar being Scotty Too Hotty. I feel Scotty has what it takes to go out there and please a crowd. If you can remember the match on WWE SmackDown! when Mr. Kennedy made his return after his injury, Scotty was his first opponent. During that match Scotty obviously was getting beaten around (like always) but you could hear the fans cheering his name. How often is it that a wrestler with a jobber status gets a pop from the crowd like that? Scotty has proven to us time and time again that he is one of the better performers on SmackDown!. I know his finisher is not the most deadly in the world; but I'd suspect it does as much damage as the Samoan Spike could. Scotty has the abilities to dance and jump around the ring, which in my opinion adds to the entertainment part of the wrestling. Scotty's never ending energy that came to the ring with him was always a plus. Secondly Scotty may look smaller than the other guys, but the man is 5'11 and 209 lbs, he's no little guy. The reason of looking so small is obvious, the other are way bigger than Scotty could ever be. Scotty also has held a few titles in the WWE. He has held the Light-heavyweight and the tag team titles. The first time Scotty won his first singles title he beat Dean Malenko. How many superstars can say they defeated Dean Malenko in a ladder match none the less.
Scotty's reign didn't stop there. He went on to become a tag team champion with Grandmaster Sexay. Even though later on he'd become injured and leave Sexay to fend for himself Scotty was missed by a lot of fans. When Sexay was busted for drugs Rikishi and Scotty actually teamed up and beat some of the best WWE tag teams. They defeated the A.P.A. a few times. They even beat the Basham's and their manager in a handicap match.
Rikishi then leaves and apparently, Scotty is back on his own again. Funaki is not a good partner for Scotty and probably never will be. The wrestling personalities are way too different for this to work. I am hoping one day to see Scotty on a well deserved winning streak and maybe even reach the United States title. Until that day comes we'll all just have to watch him stay as the personal "punching bag" of SmackDown!.
Jeff Hardy: My Homage To A Legend
by Ryan Matthews
Time to fly?
This is my tribute to the greatest high-flyer ever. Of course, many may argue that it was maybe Sabu or Rey Mysterio but to me, it was Jeff. He was the one I wanted to get up early just to see him fly (I'm from England). I was only about seven when I first saw him swanton off a ladder. I was mesmerized. I wondered how he could do it. Alas, I was ignorant to the gimmicks and planned nature of wrestling but he always made it look dangerous, extreme, real even. I was, like everyone, shocked to see him slip down the card and be released from the WWE. Sure he had his personal problems but I was sure he could overcome them. His stint in TNA wasn't true Jeff. I thought he looked empty. A shell of what he used to be.
I didn't know how to take it. Sure, some of the matches were good but not to his standards! When he was released, I soon heard rumors of a return to WWE.
I was naturally excited! Then the day came! He resigned and the next week I saw what I had been waiting for. The Swanton and Twist Of Fate. He made me believe again. He showed what a true wrestler is, not just a gimmick.
He was, and still is a legend.
Howard Finkel, Hall of Fame - by Lachlan Black
Howard Finkel. The Fink. He is the indusrty's greatest ring announcer, bar none. All other ring announcers pale in comparison to the man known as The Fink. It is just a cold fact of life that no ring announcer, not Lilian Garcia, not Tony Chimmel, not even that Justin Roberts guy who's name I can't believe I remembered. I believe, as a fan of this great business, that Howard Finkel must be inducted into wrestling's elite group.
Howard Finkel started out small, working as an usher at the New Haven Coliseum in Connecticut. After constant badgering of his boss, he was introduced to Vincent Kennedy McMahon, a young upstart in the wrestling business who had recently aquired the WWWF from his father, Vincent Jess. Finkel was eventually employed by the WWWF in 1975 and is credited as being the first and longest running employee under McMahon's management. By the 1980's Howard Finkel was the WWF's number one announcer, taking on all ring-announcing duties. His distinctive voice has been eponymous with the WWF/E product for over 30 years.
Not only has Finkel been an icon in announcing, he has also provided memorable moments over the course of the 30+ years relationship with the WWF/E. Who can forget his feud with 'Double J' Jeff Jarrett over his hair, resulting in a Hair vs. Hair match at Summerslam in which Finkel was X-Pac's cornerman. What about The Fink's 'Battle of the Sexes' rivalry with Lilian Garcia which found Finkel stripped to his underwear in the centre of the squarred circle? Pure Gold. Howard Finkel has announced at every single Wrestlemania event, and whilst he didn't 'officially' announce at Wrestlemania 22, he introduced the 2006 Hall of Fame inductees. Wrestlemania X also had it's Finkel moment, with The Fink sporting his newly found hair. It is also a little known fact that Finkel was the man who came up with the name 'Wrestlemania', how can that achievement be overlooked? It can't. Unfortunately, these days 'The Fink' only appears every now and then, but, at least for me, whenever he shows up it is noticable.
In closing, I would like to say that even though Finkel wasn't as big of an icon as Heenan and Okerland, he made a substantial impact upon the wrestling industry and will be forever remembered for his contributions. Yes, Howard Finkel would, indeed, be a fine addition to the Hall of Fame.
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