Monday Night Raw – April 26, 1999: Nice Day For A Black Wedding

Monday Night Raw
Date: April 26, 1999
Location: Hartford Civic Center, Hartford, Connecticut
Attendance: 11,981
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jim Cornette

It’s the night after Backlash and Steve Austin is still WWF Champion. The big story other than that was the stuff that happened after the main event. Stephanie was sent to a waiting limo but the driver was the Undertaker. In other words, we’ve got a huge moment coming tonight which happens to be one of my favorite moments ever on Raw. Let’s get to it.

We open with a recap of Vince knocking Shane out and inadvertently keeping the title on Austin.

The Stooges and a disturbed Vince get out of a limo.

Opening sequence.

Here’s The Rock to get things going. After saying FINALLY, Rock says he has to give Austin respect when it’s due. Therefore, Austin will forever be the biggest piece of trailer park trash that ever walked God’s green earth. Rock gave Austin the beating of his life last night but now he has a problem: a 200lb sack of monkey waste called Shane McMahon. He told Shane not to get involved…and here are Shane with the Corporation.

Shane gets in Rock’s face and blames Rock for wasting too much time last night being the Rock instead of pinning Austin. Now Rock stands in front of him as a loser. Those are grounds for Rock to remove his sunglasses and threaten to do something very uncomfortable to Shane with the brahma bull horns.

They’re about to go but Rock has to deal with the Corporation. After punching HHH and Chyna, Boss Man gets in a cheap shot with the nightstick and they’re all on the Rock. Shane fires Rock from the Corporation, basically cementing his face turn. The Corporation leaves but Rock challenges Shane to a fight later tonight. Shane says it’s on and the fans are even more into the Rock now.

Pat Patterson suggests Vince call the cops. Vince says no because he wants to do this Undertaker’s way. He has some papers that Undertaker has demanded and says he has no other option. After a break, Vince and the Stooges are waiting on Undertaker to call.

The Corporation gives Shane a pep talk. He wants a Rock jersey and HHH suggests the name The Crock.

Brood vs. X-Pac/Kane

Non-title. JR plugs a title match on the upcoming Smackdown special this Thursday but won’t say what channel it’s on. Edge spinwheel kicks X-Pac down to start and sidesteps a charge in the corner. Gangrel comes in and hammers away before getting two off a powerslam. X-Pac gets a boot up in the corner and the hot tag brings in Kane. The top rope clothesline flattens Gangrel and Christian is dragged in from the floor. A chokeslam is enough to pin Edge.

Post match the Brood’s red lights come on and Kane gets a blood bath. Kane chokeslams X-Pac into the crowd because he was the only in sight when the lights came back on.

Vince’s phone rings and we go to a break. Back with a recap of the phone call and of course we can hear everything Undertaker says. Vince says Undertaker can have what he wants: controlling interest of the WWF. Undertaker threatens Vince with hurting Stephanie if Vince screws with him. He calls Stephanie his soul mate and tells Vince to bring the documents to a loading dock near a hotel. One more thing: he wants Austin to deliver the documents. Vince says he can’t do that but Undertaker calls that Vince’s problem and hangs up.

Here’s Austin for an interview with Michael Cole. Michael asks about Austin overcoming the odds but Austin tells him to get out of the ring. Austin says he beat Rock on his own and that’s all he has to say about that. Cue Vince before Austin can go any further and Steve looks very confused. Vince asks Austin for help with the Undertaker situation and Austin chuckles a bit.

Austin says he’s got his own problems and doesn’t really care what happens to Vince and his daughter. The boss pleads his case and Austin relishes the fact that Vince needs him. He makes Vince says he needs him but Austin brings up their war over the last year plus. Based on that, Vince is on his own tonight.

Val Venis vs. D’Lo Brown

We look at Heat from last night where Nicole Bass said she wanted to sleep with Val. Brown runs in before Val can get in a catchphrase but Venis goes after the arm to take over. That goes nowhere as Brown takes him to the mat for a legdrop and two. Venis comes back with a slam but gets crotched going for the Money Shot. A superplex gets two for Brown but Val grabs a quick Russian legsweep. He loads up some grinding but Bass comes out for a distraction, allowing Brown to hit the Sky High for the pin.

Rating: D. The match didn’t have time to go anywhere and this was more about the story than anything else. Bass was there as a freak show act and the announcers treated her as nothing else. Nothing to the match here and both guys are capable of having so much better than this mess.

Brown’s valet Ivory goes after Bass for revenge from Bass beating her up on Heat and it doesn’t go well.

Big Show thinks Austin should help Vince.

Billy Gunn is coming for HHH to avenge X-Pac.

HHH vs. Billy Gunn

Gunn gets stomped down in the corner but comes back with a dropkick and right hands. A leg drag of all things put Gunn down and HHH has a target. The knee is wrapped around the post and a chop block has Gunn in even more trouble. HHH slowly stomps on the knee and yells at the crowd a lot. There’s a Figure Four with HHH holding the ropes but Gunn finally rolls over to escape. Gunn makes a comeback with right hands followed by a big powerslam for two. They head to the floor where Chyna LOUDLY posts Gunn, drawing out Road Dogg to get in Chyna’s face. A Pedigree ends Gunn.

Rating: D+. Slow match here but HHH looked good and evil for the most part. His push is coming and going after his old DX friends is a good way to get him ready. The feud hasn’t been the most interesting in the world but it’s there to set up something much bigger in the future. Gunn was his usual self here.

Shane whispers something to Boss Man.

X-Pac is looking for Kane.

Mankind/Big Show vs. Test/Big Boss Man

Mankind beat Big Show in a boiler room brawl last night but Show saved him from an attack by Boss Man/Test. Test hammers on Mankind to start but drops to the mat, allowing Mankind to score with a legdrop. Off to the Boss Man for nothing of note before Test comes back in. Mankind nails him in the back of the head to knock him into the corner but Boss Man doesn’t look interested in tagging.

Not that it matters as he tags himself in a few seconds later. Boss Man hammers away in the corner but rams heads with Mankind to put both guys down. The hot tag brings in Big Show, sending Boss Man running over to Test. That’s fine with Show as he calls for the chokeslam but Boss Man hits Show low. Big Show hits a jumping double clothesline to take both of them down, allowing Mankind to hit the double arm DDT on Test, followed by the Mandible Claw for the win.

Rating: D+. The fans were into the good guys but the match was sort of a mess. At the end of the day, Test and Boss Man weren’t the most interesting guys in the world at this point and it wasn’t much of a match. Mankind looked good out there and Big Show getting the hot tag to clean house is something that will always work.

Test and Boss Man get in each others’ faces post match and Boss Man hits him with the nightstick.

Vince is waiting with the documents.

X-Pac is STILL looking for Kane.

Bob Holly beats up Al Snow and demands a rematch for the Hardcore Title.

We go to a black and white scene at the Cleavage house. Beaver Cleavage (formerly Mosh of the Headbangers) doesn’t like his breakfast but his mother offers her some of his milk. It’s as creepy as it sounds.

Jeff Jarrett vs. Godfather

Non-title again. Before the match Jarrett asks to make it a title match, but Godfather says Debra has to be a Ho if he wins. Apparently it’s on and this is now a title match.

Intercontinental Title: Jeff Jarrett vs. Godfather

Godfather, in a long sleeve golden shirt, runs Jeff over to start and gets two off a legdrop. Jeff comes back by sending Godfather into the ropes for a running crotch attack to the back of the head. Val Venis comes out and hits on Debra, drawing out Nicole Bass to chase Venis off. The distraction allows Godfather to roll Jeff up for the pin to retain.

Owen Hart gets Debra out of there, even though she seemed to like the idea of being a Ho.

Vince is doing exactly what he was doing the last time we checked in on him.

Terri and Jacqueline are about to have their way with Meat (Shawn Stasiak). This is set to what would become Sexual Chocolate Mark Henry’s music.

Bradshaw vs. Ken Shamrock

This is fallout from the Acolytes attacking Shamrock last night. Shamrock comes out carrying a ball bat but Farrooq jumps him from behind. Test comes out for a save and the Acolytes bail. Shamrock and Test look at each other in a sign of respect. Shamrock destroys some stuff with the bat. No match.

Shane McMahon vs. The Rock

Rock hammers away to start and throws Shane into the corner. This brings out the Posse who are easily dispatched as the match is thrown out.

HHH comes out and gets the better of Rock but Chyna makes the save. The fans chant for Rock but the numbers are too much for him.

Vince leaves the garage.

The Ministry drags Stephanie, wearing a long black dress, into the building. Paul Bearer is carrying a big book.

Here’s X-Pac to call out Kane. He looks at the entrance but gets jumped from behind by Owen Hart and Jeff Jarrett. The lights go out and Kane makes the save. X-Pac asks Kane what his problem is and gets chokeslammed too. Kane carries his buddy off.

The Ministry comes out with Stephanie tied to Undertaker’s symbol. They carry it into the ring and lay the symbol against the ropes as she screams for help. Undertaker says this is on Vince’s shoulders and Austin has shown his true colors. Bearer opens his book and reads what sounds like the opening of a marriage ceremony. We are here today to join Stephanie and Undertaker in holy wedlock but Stephanie shouts NO over and over.

Ken Shamrock runs out with the ball bat but the Acolytes take him down, allowing Viscera to splash him. We cut to the back where Shane is telling the Corporation to not come out yet. Bearer continues reading as Big Show comes out and nails the Acolytes and Viscera, only for Undertaker to nail him with the ball bat. The rest of the Ministry hammers Show on the floor as Bearer announces the union. He says to kiss the bride and HERE HE COMES.

Austin charges down the aisle and runs over Mideon before slugging it out with Undertaker. Austin finds a chair and NAILS Bradshaw in the head. Viscera and Mideon take even harder chair shots and the Ministry runs off. Austin looks at Stephanie and unties her from the symbol. Stephanie hugs Austin as Vince finally comes out. The father and daughter hug as Vince thanks Austin to end the show.  I love that moment as it’s a hero standing up against evil not because of who he’s helping, but because it’s the right thing to do.  That’s basic storytelling and it will always work.

Overall Rating: C+. This was a show where it was all about the stories with the wrestling being there to fill in time. Tonight we had a surprising moment in Austin and Vince’s relationship, the Ministry showing how evil they could be and making Undertaker the top heel in the company, and Rock turning face in a move that would last for years. They did a lot of heavy lifting tonight and things would change even more in the coming weeks. The insanity is only getting started though.

Here’s the Smackdown pilot if you’re interested.

Here’s the May 3 episode of Raw if you’re interested.

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