Monday Night Raw – August 6, 2001 – They Haven’t Quite Caught Their Own Tail Yet But They’re Getting Closer

Monday Night Raw
Date: August 6, 2001
Location: Arrowhead Pond, Anaheim, California
Attendance: 10,355
Commentators: Jim Ross, Paul Heyman

We’re continuing towards Summerslam and we’re continuing to watch the Invasion fall apart more and more every day. Rock is back and he’s on Team WWF, but after that the problem becomes “what happens now?” The problem has become that the Invasion has happened and now nothing else has come of it. ECWCW is here and they don’t really do anything other than have various matches which mean nothing. I’m sure that’ll get rectified in the next three months though right? Let’s get to it.

We open with a recap of Rock joining the WWF again. Also on Smackdown we got the setup of Booker vs. Rock for Summerslam. Also out of this we get Rock vs. Shane in a street fight for Raw tonight.

Theme song gets things going.

Hardcore Title: Kane vs. Rob Van Dam

Kane knocks Van Dam off the top during his pre match posing and we head to the outside. He sets to powerbomb RVD on the floor but Van Dam escapes. A big boot to the face sends RVD into the barricade but Van Dam comes back and slams Kane into the same barricade. Spin kick from the apron hits Kane in the back and gets two. Kane shrugs it off and throws Van Dam, a chair and the steps into the ring. A drop toehold puts Kane into the steps and Van Dam surfboards the chair to the masked face. Kane comes back again and hits the top rope clothesline for two. DDP comes in and kills Kane with the chair so the Five Star can finish.

Rating: D. This was whatever. It was another attempt to further Undertaker vs. DDP I guess or maybe to start Kane vs. DDP. Either way it’s nothing interesting because DDP isn’t going to get a legit chance to do anything around here, as he’s stuck in the same feud where he has no chance of ever winning anything.

We recap Debra and Austin and the cookies. Austin insulted them and then ignored Debra to talk about Angle, but Debra stole the mic and yelled at him. He ignored her again so she hit him with the cookie sheet and left. That messed Austin up so he freaked out.

They arrived earlier and nothing happened.

Booker is auditioning for a movie role. This isn’t going to end well at all. He has the belt and the sunglasses. There’s no name given for the movie or the part or anything, but the casting chick does a Rock imitation.

Here’s Stephanie, now with Drowning Pool’s Bodies as her theme song. That’s still the best live performance of a song I’ve ever heard. She talks about how at Summerslam, bodies are going to hit the floor and about how Rocky is afraid of the Alliance. Shane is going to beat him up in the street fight tonight because Rock hasn’t wrestled for four months. She talks about (notice me saying that a lot?) how Shane has had a bunch of great matches and says he’s a gladiator.

Finally Jericho comes out to interrupt her. Stephanie is a slut you see, and likes it in a lot of positions. She calls him catty and says he’s like a girl. Stephanie can’t talk at all. I mean she can’t. She points out that no matter how many times he runs his mouth, HHH winds up beating Jericho up. Therefore, Jericho calls her a bigger slut. You know, there was a million dollar heel turn in making Jericho fall in love with Stephanie.

Jericho says that Stephanie has been with every human being, so it’s time to move onto a new planet: the Planet of the Apes. And yes, that means people in ape costumes come out to Kamala’s old song. Stephanie winds up taking a pie to the face. And that’s it. No match is made, no one is beaten down. The only thing that happened was a guy in an ape suit gave Jericho a pie and it wound up on Stephanie’s face.

Lita and Debra say nothing of note until Debra takes something the wrong way and she has to defend Austin.

Regal and Tajiri are having a chat when X-Pac comes in and complains about not being on Raw or Smackdown since he won the Cruiserweight Title. I’ll ignore the fact that he won the title LAST WEEK ON RAW and get to the fact that it’s Tajiri vs. Pac for the title tonight.

Jacqueline vs. Torrie Wilson/Stacy Keibler

This can’t go on long. The universe can’t withstand it. The two jump the one quickly but she fights back while shouting. I’m shocked at the range of her character development in this. Stacy is sent to the floor so Ivory returns, DDT Jackie to turn Alliance and Torrie gets the pin. If Ivory had actually been around for the last four months…..yeah I still wouldn’t care. Too short to rate, thank goodness.

DDP has a shrine to Sara in the back. AND NO ONE NOTICED HIM SETTING THIS UP TODAY???

Terri is at WWF New York. Heyman isn’t surprised she got dumped for a mop so she starts crying.

Debra tells Austin about the Lita thing. Apparently she had a lot of subtext going on because Lita apparently said Austin getting hit in the head was funny and that the marriage makes no sense and that Austin is trailer trash and that Matt can beat Austin. The final part makes Austin snap and he storms off.

Booker talks to the director. He has no acting experience but Rock didn’t either. This is about a British aristocrat so Booker throws together a British voice.

Stephanie and the Dudleys come to see Regal. Bubba wants to know what follows the apes: lions, tigers, and bears? Jericho can pick his partner tonight against the Dudleys. This show is needing to actually DO SOMETHING and fast.

Light Heavyweight Title: X-Pac vs. Tajiri

First of all, Pac has both titles but this is just for one because having one less title means the end of the world as we know it I guess. Second, this is for a WWF Title between two WWF guys, so there’s an Alliance referee. The fans all think X-Pac sucks. They trade kicks and Tajiri takes over with his signature stuff. Pac sends him to the floor and mostly misses his dive. We can hear a voice which I think is the director. Back in, Pac tries something off the top but jumps into Mist and a Buzzsaw Kick to give Tajiri his first title. Too short to rate but Paul says that’s his first major title in the WWF. What’s a minor title then?

Austin goes to yell at Matt and Lita. Matt and Lita deny it which Austin says sounds like calling Debra a liar. Austin vs. Matt later.

Booker reads lines and stage directions. The co-star comes in and he calls her a sucka. She recognizes him and asks if he’s related to Mr. T.

Dudley Boys vs. Chris Jericho/Kurt Angle

Brawl to start until it’s D-Von vs. Kurt. A quick ankle lock is broken up and the Dudleys hit the reverse 3D. Ray pounds on Kurt for a bit until Kurt hits a HUGE German to take him down and set up the hot tag on both sides. Springboard dropkick puts Bubba down and the Lionsault gets two on D-Von. Rhyno runs in to Gore Jericho but it only gets two. D-Von misses a headbutt and there’s the tag to Angle. Angle suplexes every Dudley in sight but the moonsault hits knees. Angle bouncing off the knees was a great visual. Jericho breaks up What’s Up and Angle hooks the ankle for the tap from Bubba.

Rating: C. So why was Rhyno in there again? Either way this was a fun match and a nice fast paced one as opposed to what we’ve sat through so far tonight. Angle and Jericho always had good chemistry together and it gives Angle another win so you can’t complain much. Not a great match or anything but it was fine, especially given how fst they had to go.

Austin intimidates Lita.

Intercontinental Title: Christian vs. Lance Storm

Big pop for Christian’s music. Christian denounces offbeat shenanigans to start and asks Storm to join him in a special Five Second Pose. Edge runs in and pantses Storm, revealing what appear to be Power Ranger underwear. Christian takes over on an annoyed champion to start but Storm comes back with a dropkick that clearly misses by a good foot. Either way it gets two. Storm goes to a choke/chinlock and yells a lot. Small package gets two for Christian. Christian comes back but Storm gets a rollup and grabs the rope for the pin.

Rating: C+. This is something I’d love to see more of. This was a very basic match with a basic story (Storm is mad and is the villain who yells about not being serious then cheats himself) and ends with the heel cheating to win. Nothing wrong with that and the match was fine (other than the surprising obvious miss from Storm on the dropkick), which is something that seeing more of would be nice.

Taker and Sara get here and Kane is waiting on them. He tells them about the shrine and wants to go break it and Page. Taker asks Kane to take Sara to the APA and then they’ll go take care of business.

Angle comes up to Rock and acknowledges that they dislike each other. Rock wants to know why Angle doesn’t like him. Angle: “You’re mean to me!” Rock offers a clean slate and Angle is all cool with that. He’s here to offer Rock some advice for Rock in his match with Shane tonight. And it’s milk. Rock takes it, shines it up a little bit, turns it sideways, and drinks it down. Rock: “THAT’S DELICIOUS!” Next time though, bring him some pie. Angle: “I know this place that has the best apple you’ll ever taste.” I don’t know if it’s that I’m tired but this was HILARIOUS.

Austin tells Debra what Lita “said” about her.

Taker busts up the shrine (somehow not starting a fire by knocking over the candles) and Page pops up. He and Kanyon beat him down. See, this is where the angle fell apart. Well not really because it had fallen apart months before but you get the idea. The problem was that while Page was evil for so long and did all that stuff to Taker and Sara, he never got anywhere because of it. He was still beaten down by Taker and Kane every time and looked like a loser. Again, no new stars are made here and the story is worthless as a result.

Matt Hardy vs. Steve Austin

Matt is European Champion, even though he hasn’t defended it in weeks, at least not on Raw. Austin can’t get in the ring to start but once he does, Austin hammers Matt down. He even busts out a fireman’s carry takeover. This quickly turns into a really boring match because it’s 2001 and it’s Steve Austin vs. Matt Hardy. The girls get in the ring and Lita takes a Stunner. A second one beats Matt.

Rating: D-. What in the world was the point of this? Matt got in nothing and it makes the European Title look even more worthless than it already is, somehow. It was a squash between guys that we knew would wind up as a squash. Matt didn’t do anything with Austin or any other main event guy after this, so what was the point? I’d like an explanation here people.

More Booker comedy minus the funny part. He finally beats up the director.

The Rock vs. Shane McMahon

Street fight. Shane and Rock cut quick promos to start which don’t say anything of note. To the shock of no one, Rock destroys him to start and they head into the crowd. We’re about three minutes in and Shane hasn’t gotten in a single punch yet. Back to ringside now and Shane gets in some elbows. A clothesline off the apron puts Rock down.

He pulls out a trashcan and hits Rock up the ramp. Shane charges at him with the can but Rock pulls himself up by the set and kicks the can into Shane’s face. Now the Rock puts the can on Shane’s head and grabs a chair. Shane is knocked back to the ring and he eventually gets some stick shots in. Rock makes his comeback and takes out an interfering Booker. Rock Bottom ends this.

Rating: D. Gee, the Rock beat Shane McMahon in a one on one match. I wonder how many people bet the other way. What idiots they must feel like now. I mean, betting on a wrestling match? The match was your usual stuff as the weapon shots were nothing special, but really…….WHY WAS THIS EVEN COMPETITIVE???

Shane grabs Rock’s boot and Booker kicks his head off. Booker lays Rock out with a belt shot and Shane hits the flying elbow through the announce table to end this.

Overall Rating: D+. This really didn’t work for me at all. Again the problem is that everything in the Invasion means nothing for the most part. It’s the same thing that happened to the NWO: these wins and losses don’t mean anything because there’s no end goal to any of this. The Alliance and WWF can trade wins until the Panda Revolution but it doesn’t mean anything because there’s nothing at stake. They never fixed that problem, at all.

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