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2/3 Raw review: Mahling's "alternative perspective" rundown

Feb 4, 2003 - 12:29:00 AM
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WWE Raw "Alternative Perspective" Rundown
February 3, 2003
Live from Washington, D.C.
Aired on TNN
Report by Mallory Mahling, Torch Team Contributor


Top Five Items from the Program

(1) Scott Steiner and Chris Jericho battled it out for the number one contender's spot in a ho-hum match. Steiner won the match and will meet Triple H at No Way Out. Will either one of them be up to the task?

(2) Eric Bischoff scoured every bar in Texas looking for Stone Cold, but the Rattlesnake was elusive tonight. However, the trip to Texas wasn't a total waste. Watching city slicker Eric walk into a saloon and order a martini was classic. After the horse laughs died down, he figured it might be prudent to order a beer.

(3) The popular tag team of Booker T and Goldust ended up going their separate ways tonight because Goldust felt he was holding Booker T back. The sensitive and caring duo of Randy Orton and Batista picked up the broken-hearted Goldust and threw him into an electrical panel, electrocuting him. (Was this WWE's elaborate version of a pink slip?)

(4) Shawn Michaels (not to be confused with Sean Michaels) gave Jeff Hardy a lesson in tough love. Jeff turned out to be a hard-headed student.

(5) Vince McMahon, who had been keeping an eye on the show, reminded Chief Morley that he and Eric Bischoff had only a little more than six days to turn Raw around. Time was a valuable commodity, counseled Mister McMahon. Tick, tick, tick.

Review of the Program

Quarter Hour 1

Eric Bischoff was in a limo in Texas talking on his cell phone to Chief Morley in Washington, D.C. Goodness knows what they were saying, since only the Spanish language feed was audible. Whoops.

As Bischoff and the Chief chattered away in dubbed Spanish, viewers were advised that a Spanish language version of the show was available. Thanks just the same, but I'd rather have the English version. My high school Spanish is a little rusty.

Finally, with the audio straightened out, Jim Ross and Jerry "The King" Lawler welcomed viewers to Raw, live from the MCI Center in Washington, D.C.

"Bless her heart," said J.R. as Stacy and Test walked down the ramp hand in hand. All of them were still selling that chair shot from two weeks ago that sent Stacy to one of those generic "medical facilities."

Stacy said it had been an accident and she should be more careful at ringside. She was disappointed that Chris Jericho hadn't apologized, however.

Test wasn't so forgiving. He ordered Jericho to come out and apologize. Or else.

Chris Jericho's music hit and he came out with a microphone.

"Test is seething," said J.R. (Oh, is that what it is.)

Jericho reminded them he'd already said he felt terrible about what had happened. He had bigger fish to fry tonight -- a number one contender's match with Scott Steiner. He was sure it would lead to his becoming World Champ at WrestleMania.

He said he'd gotten over the fact that he'd hit Stacy with a chair. He suggested that Test get over it, too.

Test gave him five seconds to apologize. But it was a set-up, because Christian had snuck into the ring and pasted both Test and Stacy. Test got to his feet and pummeled Christian as Jericho headed to safety backstage.

Kane walked into the Acting General Manager's office. Rob Van Dam was already there waiting for Chief Morley. "Why did you leave me last week?" asked RVD, who been thrown to the wolves, so to speak. Kane angrily explained that Batista had stolen his mask. "Is that where you keep all your power?" asked RVD, which sent Kane into a tailspin.

The Chief of Stuff arrived and broke up the fight. He said he was in charge, and tonight there would be a special singles match: Kane vs. Rob Van Dam.

(Commercial break)

In the garage, Test and Stacy hopped into a rather nice Caddy and sped away. Test said he was taking Stacy out of harm's way.

Quarter Hour 2

J.R. hurriedly translated the opening skit, saying Bischoff was in Texas to meet with Stone Cold and Chief Morley had been left in charge of the show.

(1) Three Minute Warning over The Dudley Boyz. If it's Monday night, it must mean a variation on the weekly Dudleyz vs. Three Minute Warning match. There was no ref in the ring, and Morley came out to 'splain. He'd assigned a special guest referee--none other than Three Minute Warning's manager, Rico. This was a quick match with an even quicker three count, which led to the obligatory brawl. Meanwhile, Spike had come to the ring and pulled out a table. Little Spike gave one of big men a Dudley Dog and D-Von eliminated the other one over the ropes. D-Von tossed Spike outside onto Rosey and Jamal, then he and Bubba put Rico through the table.

Somewhere in Texas, Eric Bischoff was standing by the side of the road with the limo driver. They were lost, and Bischoff was not pleased.

J.R. took just a moment to pitch the Stone Cold issue of Raw Magazine. (It's a good article, by the way.) The moment was awkward and seemed to be filler of some kind.

(Commercial break)

Bischoff's countdown clock showed 6 days, 23 hours, and a handful of minutes. Tick, tick, tick.

(2) Tommy Dreamer vs. Triple H's Gang of Thugs was a no contest. Tommy Dreamer was in the ring waiting for his opponent. Instead, Triple H and his goons came out, beat Dreamer senseless, and tossed him out of the ring. Triple H merely directed traffic, since he was on crutches due to a thigh bruise.

Quarter Hour 3

Triple H, who had his lovely blonde hair coiffed to perfection, introduced his running buddies: Ric Flair, Batista, and Randy Orton. Hunter was full of hot air and had a rather high opinion of himself (although that's not unusual). Blah, blah, blah. He called himself the only diamond in the business, then misspoke and called Randy Orton a diamond, too. Whoops, he meant Orton was the coal from which the diamond would be squeezed. Whatever. (Who writes this stuff? DeBeers?)

(Commercial break)

Scott Steiner was warming up for his number one contender's match and Terri asked him if he was ready for it physically. Just in case we'd forgotten, clips were shown of his brutal beat down at the hands of Triple H and friends. Steiner said he'd take care of business the way he always had, and flexed that big ol' bicep.

Triple H and his pals were sucking up the booze in a Skybox.

Meanwhile, somewhere in San Antonio, Bischoff's limo pulled up to Stone Cold's palatial home. Eric knocked on the door, but was told by someone named Buford that Stone Cold was not there. Uncle Eric refused to take "no" for an answer. Buford insisted that Austin was at the Longhorn Saloon in Bandera, Texas.

(Commercial break)

Quarter Hour 4

Last week Jazz had returned. Instead of going after the Women's Title, she pounded on poor Trish. According to J.R., Trish was convalescing at home.

(3) Women's Title Match: Victoria (w/Stevie Richard) pinned Molly Holly. Molly had on a new outfit. It was just another version of frumpy, though. This was an okay match, and Victoria pinned Molly for the 1-2-3. Victoria started to inflict some more pain on Molly, but Jazz pushed her out of the way and smacked Molly around. Jazz seems to have an agenda, albeit a puzzling one.

Goldust was looking pensive. Booker was eager to get to the ring, but Goldust wanted to make a deal. If they didn't win the tag titles tonight, they'd go their separate ways so Booker could on to bigger things. Goldust was concerned that he'd been holding Booker back.

(Commercial break)

Another promo for Nathan Jones. G'day, mate.

Triple H and his pals were living it up in the Skybox and watching the action in the ring.

Quarter Hour 5

(4) Tag Team Title Match: Lance Storm & William Regal over Booker T & Goldust to retain the titles. The referee searched Regal and Storm for International Objects, but didn't bother to take their flags away. As usual, Booker and Goldust looked tremendous. And, as usual, Storm and Regal won. You could almost see the loss coming, based on the earlier vignette.

Goldust started to leave, but Booker called him back into the ring to tell him they'd had "one hell of a run." If Goldust still wanted them to go their separate ways, then so bit it. But Booker had enjoyed each and every second they'd been together. Goldust extended his hand, but Booker gave him a big hug instead. (It was a very classy moment, and I hope this doesn't mean we've seen the last of Goldust. He's evolved into a unique and very likable character.)

(Commercial break)

At the Longhorn Saloon, city slicker Eric walked in and ordered a martini. After the horse laughs died down, he relented and ordered a beer. Bischoff asked if they'd seen Stone Cold, and they sent him to another bar down the street. Bischoff paid his bar tab with a hundred dollar bill, which instantly made him a very popular city slicker.

(5) Kane vs. Rob Van Dam ended in outside interference. This match was almost over before it began when Kane went for a pin as soon as the bell rang. Good back and forth action. Kane's flying style was not equal to Van Dam's, however, and when Kane few off the top rope, he landed awkwardly on RVD. It turned out Van Dam was playing possum and had only feigned an injury. As he went up top for the Five Star Frog Splash, Jeff Hardy ran out, knocked Van Dam into the guardrail, and slapped Kane across the face. The match ended with the two teaming up on Jeff Hardy with a choke slam and a frog splash. At least the two friends were reunited.

Booker was looking for Goldust backstage and was told he'd headed back to the hotel.

(Commercial break)

Returning from commercial, Jeff Hardy was still in the ring, apparently injured.

Shawn Michaels (not to be confused with Sean Michaels) came out to say a few words.

Quarter Hour 7

Michaels said he had intended to have a few words with Chris Jericho, but he felt Hardy was in need of some good advice. He lectured Jeff about wasted potential. Michaels told Hardy to make a decision and deal with the ramifications of that decision.

Hardy grabbed the mic and said he'd decided to start kicking some butts and he'd start with HBK's butt. Instead, Michaels gave him a face full of sweet chin music.

(Commercial break)

Since they were in the Nation's Capital tonight, Sean O'Haire took on Uncle Sam. Don't pay your taxes, he said. (Umm . . . bad advice.)

(6) D-Lo Brown (w/Theodore Long) pinned Maven. The veteran took the rookie to school in this match. D-Lo pinned him for the 1-2-3. After the match, Long urged everyone to chant "Down with the Brown." (What can Brown do for you? Oh, wait, that's the Big Brown Truck.)

Triple H was sipping champagne as he and his friends sneered at the action from their Skybox. Orton and Batista were sent on a mission.

At Arkey Blues Silver Dollar in beautiful downtown Bandera, Texas, Bischoff headed through the saloon doors to certain ridicule from the patrons inside.

(Commercial break)

Quarter Hour 8

Bischoff asked if they'd seen Stone Cold. He got the runaround for his trouble. Some guy playing pool had the audacity to laugh at Bischoff, saying Stone Cold wasn't there and Vince would end up signing him once Bischoff's time ran out. Bischoff threw his beer at the guy, knocking him out cold. (It was such a tight shot that I kept expecting Stone Cold to be right behind him when the camera pulled back.)

Orton and Batista walked up to the heartbroken Goldust and called him a loser. They wanted to know if he'd seen Steiner. Goldust tried to fight them off, but was seriously punked out. Then they threw him into an electrical panel, which snapped, crackled and popped and appeared to electrocute the Golden One. Medics hurried out immediately to tend to Goldust.

(Commercial break)

During the commercial break, the EMTs had stretchered Goldust out. "A terrible accident," said J.R. After the "terrible accident" with Stacy a couple of weeks ago, it was a little hard to swallow this one. (I sincerely hope this is not an elaborate version of a pink slip for Goldust.)

(7) Number One Contender's Match: Scott Steiner pinned Chris Jericho to meet Triple H for the title at No Way Out.

Quarter Hour 9

Lots of mocking by Jericho. Lots of posturing by Steiner. It was nowhere close to a classic match up. A sloppy suplex by Steiner was followed by Jericho putting Freakzilla in the Walls of Jericho. He escaped and gave Jericho a power bomb for a near fall. After a fall-away slam from the second rope, Steiner covered Jericho for the pin and the win. His prize was a chance to face Triple H for the title at No Way Out.

Chief Morley was on his cell phone trying to break the bad news to Bischoff about the mishaps during the show when Vince McMahon walked in. He noted that Morley and Bischoff were not having a good week. Time was a precious commodity, Vince reminded the Chief. If McMahon was not impressed next week, he'd call them to the woodshed, err ring, and say the words, YOU'RE FIRED. Oh, and have a nice week, added Vince.

Six days and 21 hours. Tick, tick, tick.

The Wrap Up This show was definitely better than the average bear. The matches were decent, although nothing special, but the show moved along at a good pace and told several good stories.

But this was just a television show. Whether it was good or bad doesn't really matter in the grand scheme of things. As we witnessed over the weekend, real life can be so fleeting and unpredictable. Whispering a sad goodbye to seven remarkable people--true heroes who braved the frontier of space and will spend eternity among the stars.

Comments? You can reach me at mmahling@pwtorch.com. See you in The Lounge on Saturday.


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