WWF RAW is WAR 10-20-97

Live from Oklahoma City, OK

Airdate: October 20, 1997

Attendance: 8,334

Hosted by Vince McMahon, Jim Ross, & Jerry “The King” Lawler

What surprises does Degeneration-X have in store for us this week? Who else will surprise us? Let’s find out in this surprise edition of RAW is WAR!

Opening montage.

To begin the show, the NEW WWF tag team champions—the Road Warriors—come to the ring.

Match 1: Rocky Maivia & Kama Mustafa (w/ the Nation of Domination) versus Ahmed Johnson & Ken Shamrock


Rating: **

Summary: Chicanery by the NoD allows them to get the win. Since Faarooq has a match scheduled, I wonder if his interference will have repercussions.

TV Rating: 2.7

After the match, Michaels tries to moon the crowd, but HHH thankfully puts an X sign in front of it. By himself, Johnson attacks the NoD before they head backstage. All of a sudden, from among the Oklahoma City faithful, the Godwinns CROWN the Road Warriors with trash cans. SNEAKY!

Vince then promises a “former WCW champion” later in the show.

Sorry, Chester.

From the locker room, MIchael Cole describes the carnage purportedly perpetrated by the Hart Foundation. I smell a ruse. Faarooq then questions Vince about the WWF being a “racist organization.” As he enters the ring, Faarooq grabs the microphone and calls out Bret.

HOT TAKE: Both shows were live, but graffiti on both shows? Who’s copying whom?

Match 2 (non-title): WWF champion Bret “Hitman” Hart (w/ the Hart Foundation) versus Faarooq (w/ the Nation of Domination)


Rating: *

Summary: More storyline than match as Degeneration-X plays mind games with both factions, and Austin snuck one in on Faarooq.

TV Rating: 3.1

Following a commercial break, Vince shills the November issue of WWF Magazine.

Without warning or music, Jeff Jarrett approaches the ring and grabs a microphone. He then name-drops Nitro and states that WCW “declared (him) everything but dead.” Next, he mentions that Eric Bischoff removed his “opportunity.” Following that, he notes that he couldn’t climb the ladder of success within WCW because he wasn’t “one of his boys.”

Jarrett then subtly complains about Steve “Mongo” and Debra McMichael going so far as to call her a “dumb blonde.” He then chastises Vince for doing the same to him two years ago and informs him that “his vision (of Jarrett) sucked.” Upon rationalizing working with a “clown (Doink), drug addict (Brian Armstrong), and a black man that can’t even speak the English language (Ahmed Johnson),” he touts his increased salary and adds that (Vince) “told (him)..to shoot” and is doing just that.

Since he’s gotten that off his chest, Jarrett turns his attention to WWF matters beginning with Bret subtly referring to him as a “has-been.” When he turns his attention to Michaels, Jarrett questions Michaels’ durability. He then conveys that Austin uses the word “ass” too often and “will always be the Ringmaster.” Damn! While the Oklahoma City faithful chant “Au-stin,” he calls Austin 3:16 “blasphemous.”

HOT TAKE: Although I realize that both sides are taking potshots at the competition, some of what Jarrett said is accurate but unnecessary. The reason Bischoff spouts off about Jarrett online is because that’s the correct forum. Instead, the WWF uses valuable air time for Jarrett to voice his disagreements within the wrestling world. In my eyes, while it’s a memorable re-introduction, it was also a waste of time.

RAW is WAR is sponsored by Milton Bradley’s Karate Fighters.

Match 3: Marc Mero (w/ Sable) versus “Too Sexy” Brian Christopher (w/ Jerry “The King” Lawler)


Rating: DUD

Summary: Showcase match for Mero.

TV Rating: 2.9


Video featuring Owen and Michaels airs.

As Owen makes his entrance, he grabs the microphone and wants his match against Michaels to be one-on-one. Degeneration-X minus Michaels emerges through the entrance and introduces “the headliner, showstopper, icon of the WWF.” Or as many would allegedly say under their breath: “The pain in the ass...”

Match 4 (title versus title): WWF Intercontinental champion Owen Hart versus WWF European champion the “Heartbreak Kid” Shawn Michaels


Rating: NONE

Summary: The chemistry between Owen and Michaels is spectacular. If only they have a series of matches on PPV... Having said that, Austin trying to protect Owen from losing the IC title adds spice to an already great story.

Ross shills the WWF Superstar Line.

In a pre-taped soliloquy, Undertaker states he will “never fight Kane.”

Next week, Bret defends the WWF title against Shamrock. While the taped shows need hype, I don’t see this match as a barnburner. Perhaps they’ll prove me wrong.

Match 5: The “British Bulldog” Davey Boy Smith versus Dude Love


Rating: NONE

OMITTED FROM THE WWE NETWORK VERSION: While TNT will air Assault on Devil’s Island on 10/28, USA will air Survivor Series Flashbacks with matches such as Hulk Hogan versus Undertaker for the WWF title in 1991 and Diesel versus Bret Hart for the WWF title in 1995.

Match 6: The Headbangers versus Road Dog & “Bad Ass” Billy Gunn


Rating: DUD

Summary: Showcase match for the newest tag team in the WWF.

After the match, Road Dog calls each member of the broadcast team a “freak.” Methinks he’s over the legal limit if you catch my drift. Regardless, Thrasher is obviously BUSTED OPEN from the boombox explosion.

Last Thursday, Michinoku signed a long-term contract with the WWF. Truly BREAKING NEWS.

Match 7: Taka Michinoku versus Tajiri


Rating: **

Summary: The Oklahoma City faithful didn’t know what hit them with this match; thus, they couldn’t respond adequately. Otherwise, this was a very sound and exciting three-minute match.

JIM CORNETTE’S SHOOT: Cornette reads some of the WWF’s fans responses to Phil Mushnick. None of them support Mushnick whatsoever and defend pro wrestling and its fans. He then reads Mushnick’s response which disparages wrestling fans again. Next, Cornette urges us to continue to protest Mushnick’s harsh criticism, and an address for TV Guide appears on the screen.

A second airing of the WWF action figures ad airs featuring the Headbangers.

Prior to the next match, we revisit last week’s episode when the Road Warriors defeated the Godwinns despite the champions’ intentions to get disqualified.

Match 8: The Godwinns versus the Disciples of Apocalypse


Rating: NONE

From the boiler room, Mankind touts his insanity and monstrous nature and is prepared to destroy Kane.

Conclusion: While the first hour was entertaining, the show went seriously downhill afterward. If the WWF doesn’t up their game, WCW’ll find something to oppose the second hour. Could this so-so episode derail the WCW Express?

TV Rating: 3.0

Who won? Nope, they got trounced 4.6 to 3.0. Something monumental will need to happen soon to alter this elongated slide by the WWF. Let’s hope something’s in the works.

Stay tuned for WCW Halloween Havoc ‘97!

Comments? Suggestions? Send them to me at rsg@rockstargary.com and follow me on Twitter (@rockstargary202).

Custom Search

web counter
web counter