January 24th, 1993
16,000 in attendance
We got Bobby Heenan and Gorilla on commentary for this, which is refreshing after watching the Raw's with Vince, Macho, and Bartlett.
Let's get down to the business.
THE STEINER BROTHERS vs. THE BEVERLY BROTHERS
|His name is Robert Paulson.|
I kind of dig The Steiners in the WWF. I wasn't feeling them in some of the stuff I saw from WCW. Didn't care for how they rolled with Doom or the Skyscrapers. But here, they seem much more well rounded. The highlights of this one is Rick throwing a nasty German suplex to Blake and turning Beau out with a ridiculous Steinerline. Scott gets to finish things off with a neck crunching Frankensteiner. These guys are just plain badasses.
INTERCONTINENTAL CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH
MARTY JANETTY vs. SHAWN MICHAELS(c)
Vince confused me on RAW, because he talked about these two mixing it up in the Rumble, not in a singles match. They do a hype video showing the infamous Barbershop Break-Up. They follow it up with Jannetty's return where he accidentally blasts Sherri with Shawn's mirror. Before the match starts Sherri comes out by herself to ring side. She's doing a demure act, and looks SMOKIN' HOT.
|It was the palantir that deceived Sherri.|
This is just a really cool match, and to me, is a clear message that Marty isn't nearly as high on the WWF's priority list. The star here is Shawn Michaels and he has a whole lot going on. He's going to out smart his nemesis and show up one of the all-time greatest valet/managers in the same match. He is absolutely King Dick of the WWF right now.
After the match, Shawn sees that Sherri is hysterical in the back with Mean Gene and he rushes back there to give her another talking to. Marty jumps him from behind and it's all broken up, while the announcers let us know this is FAR FROM OVER. For some reason an orange is thrown during the brawl. I laughed.
BAM BAM BIGELOW vs. THE BIG BOSS MAN
I was pretty excited about this one because I LOVE Bigelow, and Boss Man is super-solid in my book.
This match is nice and meaty and these two work just as hard as Marty and Shawn did. Boss Man takes a nasty spill over the top rope and nails his back on the apron really early. It looked like it really stung. They do some pretty athletic big man spots. Bammer in particular takes an awesome back body drop bump for Boss Man. I really really enjoyed this match, and seeing these two slug it out. It just looked like they busted their ass in this one.
Historically speaking this match is kind of important as it's Big Boss Man's last PPV appearance before he leaves the company in March. Very cool match, that I suggest checking out if you dig two big bruisers beating on each other.
WWF CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH
RAZOR RAMON vs. BRET "HIT MAN" HART(c)
I've made my love for Bret known. He's tied up with Macho Man as my favorite wrestler of all time. (I can't choose.) I also think Scott Hall is an utterly AMAZING wrestler and because of his problems he's lost some of the love he deserves. He's incredibly versatile and is able to shift between styles without looking bad. For example at the opening of this match he's selling Bret's leg work like a Shawn Micaels. Later he tosses Bret around outside like a monster. I'd say Hall is one of the most versatile wrestler's ever in that he can litterally morph in the ring and be everything the crowd wants at any given moment.
Not only is this match a great example of his skills, but it's just a really good match. Bret and Scott work really well together. They do some fun brawling around and toss in some cool spots like Bret's cool tope, that I kind of forgot existed. There's some cool counter's like Bret's back body drop counter, and Razor kicking him in the face when Bret goes for the middle rope elbow drop. They're simple but cool and are kind of surprising when they happen.
The way they set up the Sharpshooter was fun as it kind of came out of nowhere. Razor kicked out of a roll-up and while they laid thee, Bret felt that their legs were in position. So he locked it up and rolled through for the submission. Really fun finish and a solid match between the two.
THE UNVEILING OF.....NARCISSIST...
They finally do a big unveiling of "Narcissist" Lex Luger. It's a fun show with a big curtain being lifted, revealing Luger and a couple of mirrors. He takes off his awesome cape that he got from Krypton and starts showing off the goods. It's absolutely perfect, especially with Heenan verbally stroking him the whole time. Luger plays this pretty perfect, and does some fun stuff like directing different camera men to get close-ups on different body parts. He even cuts a fun promo, where I'm pretty sure he says he's the most "mesamorphically magnificent physical specimen beyond perfection". It's not a word but maybe it should be. I think I know what it means, at least judging from the context clues.
|So ready for Super Brawl Saturday.|
CESAR AND CLEOPATRA STOP BY
Cesar starts off with the "Friends, Romans, Countrymen, lend me your ears," bit which is funny. Because that's totally Marc Antony's line. Marc Antony would be pissed. This is just some hype for Wrestlemania IX which will be taking place at Cesar's Palace. Part of the invitation is a decree that the winner of the Rumble will be wrestling for the WWF Championship at Wrestlemania. I think that makes this one the first to do that.
THE ROYAL RUMBLE
I'd written this big long recap of the Rumble, and I realized it was just plain boring. It was mostly me recapping who came in and what they did, and you should just watch the damn thing. But here's my favorite stuff:
Highs and Lows
-Bob Backlund. It's brilliant actually. He comes in and people are kind giggling while they're cheering. He's #2, and he starts it off with Flair, who is easy to hate. When he starts showing up Flair the crowd gets into his kind of goofy act. After the Undertaker stuff about midway(I'll highlight that in a bit) Bob Backlund is still alive, after taking a Berzerker chair shot and a body slam to the concrete. It's when he gets back in that the crowd is really fully behind him. Every time it looks like he's going to get eliminated, the crowd goes nuts. It's really one of the best executed star making performances, because people really start to give a shit about a 43 year old Bob Backlund. When it's down to him, Yoko, and Savage, the crowd is wondering if he's got what it takes. The best is that he gives it his best shot on Yoko and Yoko tosses his ass, to get all the heat from beating this guy who just broke the record for longest time in the Rumble. It's a brilliant game, and worth watching the Rumble for.
-The First Half. You get Backlund, Flair, DiBiase, Mr. Perfect, Jerry Lawler, and Tenryu all in the first half. They do amazing work together. Well. except Tenryu. He kind of wanders around from corner to corner looking for some one to play with. I think Ted DiBiase might be the only guy he's comfortable with, because he kind of keeps coming back to him and giving him a little poke or kick, like he's asking him if he wants to go out for coffee. But the other guys do just awesome stuff, especially Perfect, who is hot as hell coming in against Flair, who he's fighting with their careers on the line the following night.
-EL GIGANTE The Monster makes his debut and eliminates the Undertaker, despite not being an entrant in the Rumble. He dominates the Undertaker so bad that he can't even sit up, until Paul Bearer revives him with the Urn. God Undertaker is so awesome in this segment. He's so good at playing this character. Gigante is....Gigante. He looks scary as hell.
-The Second Half. Was kind of a cool down after the Undertaker/Gigante stuff. We get guys like Saggs, Typhoon, Fatu, Tito, Earthquake, Owen Hart and Repo Man. Once Yoko comes in it becomes very apparent that there's not much to stop him from winning.
-Earthquake. I gotta single out the Quaker, though. Earthquake comes in and immediately battles his partner and eliminates him. It's like he knows that he's only got so much stamina and he's gotta take care of his partner first. It's pretty awesome. Then when Yoko hits the ring the two have a big show down that gets the ARCO Arena rocking in anticipation. And Yoko looks crazy impressive as he belly to belly suplexes Yoko over the top.
-Yokozuna. This is the Yokozuna is a monster and he gets to swat out Bob Backlund, who was building quite the fan base over the night, and goes one on one with Macho Man. The stuff with Macho is actually amazing. The two really work well together. When Yoko finally falls, the crowd goes nuts. I'm a little miffed at the ending, because Savage hits the elbow and GOES FOR A PIN! But it's almost worth it because Yoko presses him off so that Savage flies over the top rope and to the floor. It's probably the most ridiculous elimination ever. But Yoko looks like a total BEAST.
This has to be one of the best Rumbles from top to bottom. It's got four solid undercard matches between some very awesome wrestlers. The Rumble match itself isn't the best. It starts off really hot but by the time it gets down to the last ten there's not really many contenders left that you can see main eventing Wrestlemania. It's essentially Macho and Yoko, which is cool, but you find yourself going, "when are they going to toss these jabronies out?" Still, this show is a highlight so far in the project and has provided some of the best wrestling of the year. Can't wait to see how it's followed up on RAW.