Monday Night Raw – February 5, 1996: They’re Having Fun

Monday Night Raw
Date: February 5, 1996
Location: Civic Auditorium, Stockton, California
Attendance: 2,904
Commentators: Vince McMahon, Jerry Lawler

We’re coming up on In Your House VI but unfortunately we’re starting this month at the end of a taping cycle, meaning a burned out crowd and weak writing. The big story at the moment is the upcoming Bret Hart vs. Diesel cage match for the WWF World Title but Undertaker is looming as well. Let’s get to it.

Shawn Michaels/Diesel vs. Yokozuna/British Bulldog

Vince and Jerry go out of their way to point out that Shawn and Diesel are undefeated as a team. Camp Cornette has been having problems of late so there are a few variables here. Shawn and the Bulldog have a posedown to start until they take turns sending each other to the floor. Yokozuna tries to sneak up on Shawn (as well as a 600+ man can sneak) so Diesel picks Shawn up and tosses him to knock Yokozuna down.

It’s off to Diesel vs. Yokozuna as Vince plugs those stupid Billionaire Ted skits. A Samoan drop (You think Vince knows what to call that?) drops Diesel and Bulldog low bridges Shawn out to the floor. The delayed vertical suplex plants Shawn as the announcers play fantasy bookers about the World Title situation.

Back from a break with Shawn in more trouble (makes sense) and Yokozuna putting on a nerve hold. Shawn finally avoids the big splash and Diesel comes in to clean house. I know he’s not the most popular booker but I’ve always enjoyed watching Nash do his big power stuff. Everything breaks down and Shawn superkicks Yokozuna to the floor for the countout.

Rating: C-. Not terrible here and for once I can completely get the idea of not having someone get pinned. If they’re setting up Yokozuna as a loser, it’s a stretch to complain about getting pinned by Shawn so having him get knocked out because he’s too fast is a smart way to go about it.

Post match Cornette yells at Yokozuna, who beats him up to turn face.

Someone is coming and he’s missing part of an ear.

Hakushi vs. 1-2-3 Kid

This could be good. Feeling out process to start as neither guy wants to go too fast. Kid tries to spin around a bit and gets caught by a superkick underneath the chin. A quick toss to the floor has Hakushi in trouble and a flip dive over the top draws absolutely no reaction. I don’t know if the crowd is just bored or what but that was SILENCE. We take a break and come back with Kid getting dropkicked out of the air to put both guys down. Another kick to the face puts the Kid on the floor and Hakushi follows him out with a nice dive. Back in and Hakushi goes up but gets butterfly superplexed back down for the pin.

Rating: B-. This got better near the end but that crowd reaction tells you a lot. You would think a match between two high fliers like these guys would have gotten at least some kind of a reaction, but when the Kid’s feud is setting up a “loser wears a diaper” match, it’s not the easiest thing in the world to get behind.

Clarence Mason is annoyed that Vader isn’t reinstated and promises to sue the WWF.

Video of Vader attacking Gorilla Monsoon to earn himself a suspension.

Monsoon says his injuries will heal and apologizes to the fans for losing his cool. He knows Roddy Piper will be fine as interim boss.

WWF World Title: Undertaker vs. Bret Hart

If this doesn’t wake them up, nothing will. Undertaker is challenging and throws Bret around to start before a headbutt gives us a stalemate. An uppercut puts Bret down and we hit the always stupid smother hold. Old School is loaded up but here’s Diesel for a distraction to break it up. Bret takes over as Diesel sits in for some commentary as this is still going slowly. It’s time to go after the leg with Bret dropping elbows and wrapping it around the post.

Back from a break with Undertaker hitting a belly to back suplex and sending Bret into the barricade. Old School connects the second time but the referee gets bumped on the Tombstone attempt. Bret escapes into a rollup for no count and it’s time to go back to the leg. That’s enough for Diesel as he jumps Bret from behind and Jackknifes Undertaker. We go to a second break and come back with…..the match having ended during the break. Eh to be fair it was pretty much over already.

Rating: C+. It’s a shame that triple threats weren’t a thing in this company yet as this three way feud really deserved everyone fighting at the same time. It’s interesting stuff and I get why they didn’t want to have Undertaker do a job here, especially on a TV match. I can’t complain much about a non-finish on Raw, though the fans might when Nitro had a title change two weeks earlier.

And now, a Billionaire Ted sketch to wrap things up. It’s a press conference with Ted saying he’ll do anything to put the WWF out of business while Nacho Man and Huckster try to fight each other. Ted doesn’t care about losing millions of dollars of stockholders’ money because he’s just having fun. Maggle! These things are so petty and such an embarrassment.

The show was pre-empted on February 12 so next up is February 19.

Overall Rating: C+. The wrestling was better here but this was actually the go home show for the pay per view due to the show not being on next week. In that sense this was a pretty strong show with four out of the five pay per view matches getting some time, which is a lot better than you would normally expect from Raw. The three way feud continues to have my attention but it’s all just filling in time until Shawn gets the belt anyway.

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  1. Heyo says:

    Where did this Maggie thing start?

    klunderbunker Reply:

    It’s Maggle. That’s how JBL pronounces Cole’s name and he often says someone is “having fun Maggle!”