James Dixon: It is the last episode of the year, and we are of course still in Poughkeepsie, only this week The Quebecers join Vince McMahon on commentary. Pierre barely speaks English. Oh, the humanity.
Lex Luger vs. Barry Horowitz
Vince explains the psychology behind wrestlers using baby oil, and that is the highlight of the first minute of the match. Luger gets dizzy as he tries to do some chain wrestling, so Horowitz knees him in the face and levels him with a couple of European uppercuts. They are actually doing a heat! Horowitz is made to look very competitive, and is the aggressor for a good portion of the bout. Oh Lex, you formula loving bastard you. This is why you didn’t get over as a main event star! He should have been eating guys like Horowitz alive. Luger eventually remembers that he is supposed to be showcasing himself, and finishes Barry off with a superplex. What a curious way to go over. Real wrestlers use their finishers in order to establish them…
Final Rating: *
Johnny Polo says he is going to beat “Marty Confetti” tonight and calls Vince “McMoron”. I love this guy.
Johnny Polo vs. Marty Jannetty
This comes about because of Polo’s involvement in the excellent Jannetty-Kid match a few weeks ago. While he was usually only a manager in the WWF, Polo did have a wrestling career prior to this as well, working as Scotty Flamingo in WCW. He went onto become Raven of course, a dark brooding character pretty much the polar opposite of Polo. As much as I enjoy the work of Raven, I still prefer Polo. The character was gold. What they do here is perfectly fine, and good in many places, but the crowd doesn’t really buy Polo as a credible threat to Jannetty. To them, he is just a manager. After having been outclassed for the first few minutes, Polo catches a break when Jannetty misses a crossbody and goes flying over the top. Polo responds by hitting an intentional one to the outside of his own. He sure never did fly like that as Raven. Back in the ring and Jannetty regains the advantage, until both men are downed when they both go for a crossbody and collide. You know, the quality of this match makes me wonder why they didn’t utilise Polo as a worker more often. They were so desperate for talent in 1993/94, and Polo was unquestionably decent in the ring, so why not use him? No, instead we have to suffer babyface Doink and slugs like Adam Bomb and Mabel. Things aren’t looking good for Polo, so Pierre gets involved, and trips Jannetty. He shrugs it off and hits a superkick, but Pierre pulls Polo out of the ring away from danger when Jannetty goes up top. Jannetty dives onto Pierre, then tries a sunset flip back in the ring on Polo, who drops down and holds onto the ropes with assistance from Pierre, and wins the match. Jannetty is pissed afterwards and confronts The Quebecers. Good little match, with a lot of hard work from Polo, who bumped around well for everything Jannetty hit him with, and impressed with a couple of spots of his own. He definitely should have wrestled more in the WWF.
Final Rating: ***
Doink the Clown vs. Spike Gray
Gray looks like the illegitimate lovechild of Tank Abbott and Seth Rogan. I have no idea who is playing Doink at this point, it could be a plethora of guys. It doesn’t matter, because it is not Matt Borne and thus not good. I probably wouldn’t hate the character quite so much if it wasn’t for the annoying little midget dicking around. The pint-sized prick offers Gray some gum, but it shockingly turns out to be a trick. Dink follows up with a kick to the shin, so Gray gives chase. Seconds later, Doink hits a sloppy German suplex with an (eventual) bridge for the pin. That was two moves and like a minute long, but it was still a disaster.
Final Rating: DUD
A graphic flashes up advertising “BAM BAM BOOGER” against The Smoking Gunns. Marvellous.
Crush vs. Mike Moraldo
Why does Crush always follow Doink on Raw since they switched allegiances? Oh I get it, we had a decent match earlier so the WWF has to systematically destroy the spirit of its fans with the worst matches possible afterwards. It is like an unwritten rule or something. Just read the review of Crush’s match from a few weeks ago, because it all applies here. The martial arts is still embarrassing, the pace is still pathetically slow and the face paint is still ridiculous. I was perhaps overly harsh on his match last time because I was so angry after what I had seen before it. Here I am not thrilled but not livid, so it avoids the negative stars. It is still horrid though.
Final Rating: DUD
Elsewhere, The Undertaker rearranges his wood.
Razor Ramon vs. Derek Domino
Derek Domino? I guess Jiminy Cricket was not available. Jacques thinks his name is funny too, and makes pizza references. “Domino, after this match, maybe heading to a Pizza Hut?” says Vince. Erm, I’m not sure he gets it. I wonder if this match was supposed to air on the first episode of 1994, because Jacques and Vince talk about New Year’s resolutions. Razor runs through his repertoire and wins with the Razor’s Edge. No upset tonight.
Final Rating: ½*
THE RAW RECAP
Most Entertaining: Johnny Polo. If he is on the show, he invariably wins this award.
Least Entertaining: Dink. I hate that idiotic little clown.
Quote of the Night: “Yes. Well, maybe no” – Vince McMahon is unsure whether The Quebecers are the greatest tag champions in WWF history. They are not.
Match of the Night: Marty Jannetty vs. Johnny Polo.
Summary: Finally, an episode of Raw featuring a marquee match with something about it that is actually worth watching. It had been a lean few weeks prior to that. Still, the WWF shouldn’t be relying on one of its managers to carry the workrate load. Crush and Doink made this hard to watch, as they always do, but at least it was short!