Monday Night Raw – May 3, 1999: The Corporate Ministry

Monday Night Raw
Date: May 3, 1999
Location: Valley View Casino Center, San Diego, California
Attendance: 10,177
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler

This is another request but I’m not sure why. The main event is Rock vs. Austin so I’m guessing that’s why. However there’s something else on this show which is made of awesome so maybe that’s it. We’re about eight days removed from Backlash where Austin held the title from the Rock in their much better rematch. The next show is Over the Edge, which is the Owen Hart show. Let’s get to it.

We open with a clip from I assume last week where Vince and Shane got in their first real fight. Austin Stunned Shane and left both of them laying. I don’t think I can really tell what’s going on here with just this package. We hear about something on Heat where a bunch of guys got laid out. Ok now I know where this is going.

Here’s the Corporate Ministry whose numbers might rival the NWO. They formed on the pilot episode of Smackdown a few days ago. Shane is their leader and gets in some jabs at the audience. He wants to know how many of the falls would have the balls to slap their father in the face. HHH makes fun of Rock because that feud hadn’t been done recently I guess. They’re fighting at Over the Edge and HHH doesn’t get why the people care about him. Is it because of the eyebrow thing?

Austin is on top of Undertaker’s list, but don’t worry because he still hates everyone. He tries to save everyone but Undertaker will be his executioner at Over the Edge. First he’s going to take the title and then he’s going to give Austin a beating like never before. Then next week on Raw, Austin will be the ultimate sacrifice to the greater power. Shane reminds us that he’ll be guest referee for that match. As for Vince, he has two hours to get out here.

On the stage though we have Mankind, Shamrock, Test and Big Show, all armed with 2x4s. These would be the bunch of guys that got beaten down as earlier mentioned. Mankind says that they’ve formed a union. He complains about the lack of pay and says they’ll have Shane’s testicles or something. The Union comes to the ring and cleans house.

We get a clip of Billy (debuting a certain theme song tonight) beating up X-Pac last night on Heat.

Billy Gunn vs. X-Pac

An angry Pac goes right after him with his usual assortment of kicks. Gunn hits his version of the Jackhammer out of the corner to take over for two and we’re in the chinlock a minute into this. That’s a sign of a short match. Thankfully it doesn’t last long so Pac gets slammed twice (gorilla/power respectively) but they collide coming out of the corner. Pac kicks him down a few times and loads up the Bronco Buster but lands on a boot. Fameasser and we’re done quick. Nothing match, but you don’t get a new song and lose.

Billy keeps beating on him but Road Dogg makes the save, followed by Kane of all people taking Pac to the back.

Shane is yelling in his office about the Union going down.

Here’s the Corporate Ministry again. Shane says he’s made some changes for tonight’s show. Before he can say anything, we cut to the back where Linda, Stephanie and Vince are arriving. Shane doesn’t seem to have seen them. Back in the arena we hear about a four corners match: Viscera vs. Bossman vs. Mideon vs. Test. All are Corporate Ministry other than Test.

Also tonight, Mankind has a hardcore match with the Acolytes. HHH is going to get Shamrock. That should be good. Oh and Chyna is guest referee. As for the Mean Street Posse, they get Patterson and Brisco. THAT is the match I was talking about earlier as I can almost guarantee it’s going to make me smile. Finally, we’re getting Undertaker vs. Big Show. There’s also going to be an evening gown match between Sable and Debra. The rest of the McMahons and Patterson are watching in the back.

HHH whispers in Shane’s ear and Shane says that tonight: Rock vs. Austin. That’s quite a main event. HHH says that’s not big enough so let’s make it a lumberjack match with the Corporate Ministry as the lumberjacks. There’s one spot left but before Shane can talk about it, here’s Vince. Stephanie and Linda flanked by cops come out behind him but Vince doesn’t see them until after they’re here. Vince says chill but Shane says he hasn’t even started yet.

Vince says Shane is about to make a big mistake and to think before he does this. Shane challenges his dad to a fight and imagine the box office if it happens. He keeps goading Vince on and Vince says no. Vince hopes Shane will listen to Linda, but Shane tells her to shut up. That’s enough for Vince but he’s surrounded. The rest of the McMahons leave and Shane admits that he was the mastermind behind Stephanie’s abduction and all the terror that Undertaker had caused so that Vince would step down and Shane could take over.

He opened the door for Undertaker and gave him the bear and took the pictures. Shane picked out the wedding dress for the Black Wedding (one of my favorite moments ever, but MAN this stuff is out there in retrospect). That last line gets Vince to charge but he gets beaten down. After the Corporate Ministry leaves, Vince says he’ll fight Shane.

Post break the female McMahons try to talk Vince out of it but he sends them to a hotel.

Pat Patterson/Gerald Brisco vs. Mean Street Posse

Dang it this isn’t the right show! This isn’t a match, but rather a fight as the old guys beat the tar out of the Posse and whip them with belts until the Posse runs. I’m not sure the match ever actually started. The rematch the following week though was all kinds of fun and is well worth checking out.

Shane is talking to the Ministry (I’m not writing Corporate every time) and they walk somewhere. Something about offices is mentioned.

Test vs. Mideon vs. Viscera vs. Big Bossman

Officially this is a four corners match. They have to tag though so it’s Test starting with Bossman. It never would have happened but it would have been hilarious to see Test start on the apron and say you guys go ahead. Bossman hits a corner clothesline and a shot to the back of the head to take Test down.

Exam comes back with a backdrop but gets sent into the corner to fight Viscera. Big Visc gets a splash in the corner but Test’s boot staggers him. Test goes after Mideon and walks into a belly to belly fro Viscera. Mideon comes in now and things slow way down. Just get him naked already and make things better. Bossman throws in the nightstick and Test clocks Mideon with it for the pin.

Rating: D. Whatever here as it was pretty clear this would end in either a big brawl or with Test getting a fluke win. The match didn’t go anywhere because Test was somehow even worse than his later time here. The Ministry guys were exactly what you would expect them to be here, so they were boring.

The Union stops a beatdown post match.

Undertaker and Bearer leave Vince’s office and we see Vince down on the ground. That’s a Russo trademark: beatdowns that we only see the end of.

Vince McMahon vs. Shane McMahon

Shane talks some trash before Vince staggers out. Vince falls while coming down the ramp and Shane clotheslines him. Shane throws him in and we get a bell. Bronco Buster hits Vince and Shane talks some trash. Vince hits a clothesline and a Stunner out of nowhere for the pin. This was like 90 seconds from bell to bell.

Mankind vs. Acolytes

Hardcore match. Mankind has his 2×4 and goes after Farrooq with it but Bradshaw pops him with a conveniently placed snow shovel and we head outside. The numbers are catching up with Mankind and we go back inside quickly. More beating follows but a Foley chant lets him hit a double clothesline. That of course doesn’t last long and we head back outside. This is moving fast again.

Foley goes into various objects and Farrooq pounds on him. A low blow gets him a break and he fires off some bell and trashcan shots on both guys. Back inside and Foley gets two and a chair shot, in that order. After some heel miscommunication the Claw goes on Farrooq but Bradshaw breaks it up and a double powerbomb onto some chairs ends this.

Rating: D+. Not much here but there wasn’t really a way to have Foley win this and make it look reasonable. That’s one of the benefits of the Attitude Era: people didn’t overcome ridiculous odds most of the time and it kept things a bit more reasonable than it gets today. Now that being said, the rest of the era was insane but that was always a perk.

Ken Shamrock vs. HHH

Chyna is guest referee. HHH has a theme here which only lasted for a few weeks. Shamrock takes him to the mat with a quick armbar and pounds on the arm but HHH goes to the eye. Now why didn’t he do that to Lesnar? Shamrock goes back to the arm which apparently is to set up the ankle lock. He tries a rana but gets countered into a powerbomb as HHH takes over.

Chyna is checking her nails as HHH chokes on Shamrock. High knee gets a quick two count from Chyna. Shamrock grabs a leg lace but Chyna rakes his eyes to break it up. HHH hits Shamrock low to take over again as Lawler talks about the evening gown match and we get a YAHOO! Shamrock comes back with his spinning elbow and a dropkick for no count. He counters the Pedigree into an ankle lock but Chyna drags HHH to the ropes. Ken goes to suplex Chyna but HHH makes the save. Low blow sets up the Pedigree for the pin.

Rating: C-. This was about what you would expect but it wasn’t bad. Shamrock would drop down the card over the summer and would be gone by the fall, after feuding with some new guy named Jericho. Anyway, not a bad match here but the Chyna interference was a story we’ve seen before. It (and those shorts) worked though.

Undertaker vs. Big Show

The first meeting of many. Taker punches him into the corner to start but stops to stare at the referee. Taker charges at him and gets caught in a bearhug. He gets sent to the floor where Bearer puts something on his elbow pad. Apparently it’s ether, which JR and Lawler can smell from 20 feet and if you listen to them, the fans are noticing it too. Naturally, Show can’t smell it because he’s only two feet away. Show gets choked down but flips Taker off (his back) anyway. Taker BREAKS A BASEBALL BAT over Show’s head for the quick DQ. This was an angle, not really a match.

Taker yells at Show while he’s out cold. That bat shot looked GREAT.

Debra vs. Sable

Evening gown match. Sable pops up on screen but says she’s at the Playboy Mansion so she has a stunt double.

Debra vs. Nicole Bass

Bass is about 6’2 and build like Chyna. Debra strips and loses on her own. Bass chokes her until Jarrett comes out with the guitar. Val comes out and carries Debra off, which continues a WEIRD love story. I wrote about it for Over The Edge or Backlash. Look it up.

Post break, Jarrett beats up Val in the back.

Steve Austin vs. The Rock

That’s something you don’t see every day. It’s a lumberjack match and the Ministry will be on the floor. The bell rings and the lumberjacks get on the apron. Rock and Austin never made any contact so yeah it’s a big swerve and the beatdown begins. Vince sends out the Union and some other midcard guys to run off the Ministry. HHH and Undertaker stay behind at ringside as Austin beats Mideon under the stage.

Rock gets punched up the ramp and Austin comes up to make the save. Austin and Taker fight to the elevator that the Brood uses and go under the stage. Rock fights back and Austin returns, only to accidentally knock HHH into Rock, sending him off the stage (it wasn’t a big fall and he didn’t hit the floor). Undertaker LAUNCHES Austin off the stage and through two tables to end the show.

Overall Rating: C+. This is one of those shows where you would be able to figure out what you thought of it a few days later. It flew by but it was one of those “this is all you get so deal with it” shows. Also the bait and switch ending was annoying as the bells were at most 15 seconds apart. Still though, this was about making the Corporate Ministry look strong and it did that, but I’m not sure on bringing in the Union so soon. Entertaining show, but I don’t know if I’d call it good.

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  1. Rocko says:

    Why did you put the current name of the arena and not the old name?

    I went to this show and can remember Taker launching Austin off the stage and nothing else (I was 4 at the time). I re-watched it recently and thought it was more a C- as it wasn’t that great, not boring though.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    That’s the name that was listed on the site I get my info from.

  2. Wayne says:

    Again, this was another time when Raw was absolutely must see TV. I MISS these days.

    Rocko Reply:

    Not for long. 1999 was a bad year. 2000 was really good though.