Welcome to the TUESDAY edition of the Wrath of Tito, which covers RAW, mainly, among other various topics. I've got a large exam to worry about tomorrow, so if my RAW review seems to lack depth, well, blame school! I have 3 classes this quarter, and I love how each professor has to schedule exams during the same week. Bastards. Don't they know I'm Mr. Tito and I should have more free time to write?!?!?
Feedback for the FACT or FICTION column co-written with William Martinez went well. I was happy with how it was received. I'm hoping to make this a regular staple of LoP, and I'll do my best, along with Martinez, to keep the column interesting. If you missed last week's edition, Click Here. We talked about 5 topics, ranging from Steve Austin, Scott Steiner, Shane McMahon, Bill Goldberg, and Chris Benoit. I thought it went well, as I greatly admire the feature when it is done on ESPN. Look for the column to be up again sometime this Wednesday, and keep an eye out on the WWE section of LoPForums.com for the Fact or Fiction thread which has the topics Martinez and myself discussed in the column. It's good stuff.
You know, some people thought it would take forever for Mr. Tito to join the DVD revolution. Well, also this Wednesday, I will be reviewing the DVD version of the WWE's Best of Confidential! That's right, as the DVD was on sale at my local Sam Goody. I've watched it all, and it will be my very first DVD review out of the many, many multimedia reviews that I've done over the years. I've covered many books, CDs, and VHS tapes, but never a DVD. Hell, I didn't have a DVD player until I bought my new computer last year, and didn't have a home player until this Christmas. Hey, the technology was cheaper, brother. By the way, I have a HUGE stockpile of VHS WWF, WCW, and ECW tapes that I never watch anymore. I wonder what market value they'd have or if anybody wanted to buy them?
I haven't touched Jerry Lawler's book since last week. I just don't have the time...
Here's a good rumored backstage story that I've seen floating around at several places. Ever wonder why Jamie Noble and especially Nidia haven't been on Smackdown lately? Well, rumor has it that Stephanie McMahon took them off of television so that Nidia could lose some weight. Apparently, Nidia was in a recent bikini contest lately and probably didn't look up to the standards of the many thin WWE ladies, such as Torrie, Dawn, Stacy, and Trish. Now, I can remember a bikini contest on Smackdown a while ago when it was Nidia against Torrie. Nidia didn't look too good in the low-cut bikini that she was given, but should she? Firstly, she was hired as a WRESTLER first, and plays a valet second. Torrie Wilson was a fitness model first, and a WWE personality second. Aside from that, what is wrong with a woman looking normal? Ladies like Dawn, Torrie, Trish, and Stacy look like Barbie dolls, although I would never hesitate to take them home with me one night. Stephanie, herself, isn't exactly the thin woman herself, and easily has a few more pounds on her than Nidia. Yet if this rumor is true, why should one TV personality lose weight while another doesn't have to (and Stephanie has more TV time).
I actually CAUGHT Smackdown Thursday evening. If I wasn't busy Friday morning, I probably would have whipped up a column at home. I thought the opening bout between Chris Benoit vs. Charlie Haas was a good opener. Funny how Chris Benoit received a large pop for his efforts at the Royal Rumble, yet he's back to wrestling in the midcard the next show. It's also funny how Chris Jericho's momentum from the Royal Rumble was shot down by the worked injury of Stacy Kiebler the night after against Test. Yeah, and they say nobody on the top are protecting their spots.... HA! Rikishi vs. Bill DeMott sucked, but DeMott looks to be out of action for a while. GOOD. The Vince McMahon JACK OFF match between the Undertaker and Albert happened, and the Undertaker prevailed. Crappy match. And to think that Vince was going to push this as a high profile feud. Ridiculous. See why his company is losing money instead of expanding? If not, hit yourself in the head with a tack hammer because you are a retard. (That's a quote from Tommy Boy, so don't get offended)
Edge vs. Benjamin wasn't bad... Haas seems to be the better wrestler out of the Team Angle duo. I can't wait for the Guerreros and Team Angle to start wrestling. Cruiserweight match between Nunzio and Shannon Moore was too short. Both guys are in need of some more character development to get more crowd reaction out there. The main event rules the world with Angle vs. Rey Mysterio. At least Angle could look great after a Pay Per View. Hulk Hogan came back. I have no problem with that, as I wouldn't mind seeing Hogan vs. Vince at Wrestlemania, and even Hogan vs. Rock 2 at No Way Out. Anything beyond that, well, it could fall flat like the last time he was in the WWE. I'll give this show a [ A- ] (A minus). Way better than RAW.
I also watched Tough Enough. The show just dragged on and on until they announced the winners at the end of the show. I very much agree with the choice of John. He has talent that can be unique in the WWE, given that he was a gymnist. That standing Shooting Star Press is a thing of beauty. I can't say much about Matt, as compared to the other 2 guys, Eric and Jonah. All the same to me. I'm hoping that these 2 are trained hard and given proper seasoning before getting embarrassed on television, just like all of the Tough Enough winners already have, especially from Season 2. John could be an awesome Cruiserweight, but I'm sure the WWE will get him on a diet that will increase muscle mass very quickly. I don't see what Matt has to offer tot he WWE in the long run, but we'll see.
Lovely how Edge is being blamed for not carrying the load in the Albert matches, which cause the A-Train to look bad during his push. Huh? Are you kidding me? I think that Vince McMahon needs to suit up and see if he can make a 300 hairy pile of shit look good in a match. How about the Undertaker on Smackdown? Edge did a better job with Albert than the Undertaker, yet nobody will ever question the Undertaker's ability. NEVER. Stupid WWE. They'll never get it.
Raven is in NWA-TNA now. Don't care. He's too old to matter anymore, and NWA-TNA is a bad environment for anyone to make a good comeback. 'Nuff said.
Congrats to the Tampa Bay Bucs for winning the Superbowl. It must have been worth the $8 million, 2 first round picks, and 2 second round picks coughed up. But hey, NFL owners don't lose money like owners in baseball or hockey.
On to the RAW review, mmmkay?
Jeff Hardy vs. Booker T is your opening match. We'll see where this possible heel turn of Hardy goes. Lord only knows he needs something in the storylines to motivate him again. Typical RAW filler match, as it's hard to watch Jeff Hardy matches here in 2003. He's just too burned out. Booker T beat Jeff Hardy, but Jeff tried to attack Booker T afterward. It's funny how they are doing Jeff Hardy's heel turn. They make him lose matches to guys who are underappreciated too (Booker T and Rob Van Dam), and after he tries to attack his opponent after he lost the match, he usually loses the brawl afterward. They keep holding him down...
Scott Steiner to the ring, and he looks winded already. I kid, I kid. Lots of boos to start. Not a good sign. Yes! Kill him with the "What" chants! Triple H, doing his best Ric Flair impersonation (he's seriously dressed like Flair used to, sunglasses and all). Triple H emphasizes that he has friends to mess with. They all came out, and Orton got a lot of crowd heat. I'm liking this group early on, especially with the appreciation of the OVW wrestlers to be there. Steiner whipped out the old lead pipe, trademark of his WCW days, and chased the Fab 4 away.
No black super heroes, says D'Lo's new manager, Teddy Long? I know a green, an orange, and a blue one (Hulk, Thing, and Beast). Teddy Long could work well as a manager, but this race card stuff needs to be loosened up.
Wow... Hurricane gave a mask to a kid in the crowd. Kinda nice... He would take on the new black superhero, D'Lo Brown. I'm hoping that the WWE eventually catches on to the "Peanut Head" chants for Teddy Long. Nice sunset flip by the Hurricane into a roll up. The Low-Down is now called the "Fade to Black". Ok... that ought to make him get more over as an angry black man.
Gotta love the plugs for Smackdown concerning the return of Hulk Hogan, with Sean Morley and Eric Bischoff talking backstage. Bischoff has an idea...
The HELD BACK Chris Jericho is with Terri. Terri is looking quite old tonight. They announce that he has a #1 Contender's match with Scott Steiner next week, which Jericho has no chance of winning. This worked injury is a damn joke with Stacy. Terri looks like she's 60 with bleach blond hair. Jericho is going to the ring now...
The new video game, The Getaway, looks like a complete rip-off of Grand Theft Auto. I actually played Vice City over the weekend, thanks to my good friend Rustoleum. FANTASTIC game! Nothing like some senseless violence in a game. It's so easy to just walk around town, kill anybody you see, and steal any automobile you want. I can see why parents are getting mad at this game. But anyway, it's good stuff and if I had a Playstation 2, I'd probably be addicted to it badly. (I actually have GTA 3 downloading from Kazaa as we speak for the PC).
Chris Jericho comes out and we do another worked speech. Well, Jericho forgets it and mentions his #1 contender's match. He then turns around and apologizes for hurting Stacy, but Christian comes out for whatever reason? He just adds fuel to the fire, and then Jericho rags on Test. However, Shawn Michaels comes out to cease Jericho on the mic. HBK rags on Jericho's pants, as if Michaels hasn't ever wore any queer looking pants. We then get a brawl, where HBK almost superkicked Jericho. That was a well done segment. This feud has been pretty good so far.
LOL! Victoria was about a centimeter away from cracking Steven Richards in the knuckles when hitting the trashcan with a big stick. That would have sucked.
Funny how they are pushing this Chicago Street Fight as if it's unique, despite Trish Stratus and Victoria fighting in several no-DQ and hardcore bouts. Jim Ross called Trish Stratus "Canada's finest export". Hardly. Did you see Shania Twain at the Superbowl the other night? Nice hot pink tights from Victoria, although that black knee pad sticks out badly. DEVASTATING catapult into the trashcan on Trish Stratus. She protected her nose on that move. Nice Lou Thesz Press off the side by Trish. These two are pretty physical with each other tonight. Richards got involved after a fire extinguisher was used, and helped to beat down Trish. Eventually, Victoria won with Richards's help. Match was good until the double-teaming, but it's a Chicago Street Fight, so it wasn't againt the rules. Whoa, after the match, Jazz made her way to the ring and attacked Trish to no heat. Crowd is thinking "who is she?". Women's wrestling is so exciting, brother. I can't wait for the so-called "wrestling geniuses" to start saying "Jazz is a breath of fresh air to the women's division". Sure, she's better technically than most, but she looks like someone hit her with a shovel. She eventually got some heat after a long and vicious beatdown of Trish. By the way, is she jealous of Steven Richards for moving on to a new woman?
CSI is the highest rated show on network television. Why do they wait until 11:05 on Monday nights to air re-runs of the first season? Makes absolutely no sense to me.
Next, it's the Tables match for the World Titles between the Dudleys and Regal/Storm. I have a bad feeling about this. The pyro guys are fucking up badly, as this is the second match of the night with excess smoke in the crowd. The people are cheering wildly for the Dudleys tonight. A title change would be perfect here, and something less than that could cause a riot. Uh oh, no tables underneath the ring. That dirty Sean Morley... The Dudleys try to chase Morley, but they are met by 3 Minute Warning. Quit recycling feuds. 3 Minute Warning were beat by the Dudleys a while ago, and they won't draw any money against the Dudleys in a regular feud. Give the Dudleys the titles and either turn them heel or create new heel teams to chase after them. Ah yes, Storm and Regal retain the titles. Just what RAW needs right now: another week of crappy tag team champions. I hope those kneepads that William Regal bought in honor of his good friend Triple H are working well right now.
Good stuff with the Asian tour clips.
4-H (Orton, Batista, Triple H, Flair) approach flair, and they don't care about if Steiner wins next week or not.
Kane and Rob Van Dam are backstage, and they do a weird but funny promo.
That vollyball game for the X-BOX looks FANTASTIC!!! (Dead or Alive, Xtreme Beach Vollyball)
Our next match was Matt and John from TE 3. Funny how Tough Enough wrestlers can't even have tights in their first wrestling appearances. They start off with "basic jobber moves" in the headlock. They can't do much, so hence the basic moves. This looks like a cheap independent match, just from the bush league looks of the wrestlers. Chris Nowinski comes into the ring and stops the match. Tommy Dreamer then chases him out and congradulates Matt and John. Oops. We were set up, as Dreamer caned both guys, and the crowd is confused as to whether to cheer or not.
Whoever worked on Sean O'Haire's speaking ability deserves a promotion!
Eric Bischoff is out and ready to speak. Talks about Austin, and then the Confidential clips of Vince/Ross talking about Austin are shown. Hard plugging of the RAW magazine was next. He's returning at No Way Out. Nothing new in this interview. Steve Austin "My Sacrafice" video was shown. Ok... what a waste of time.
Our main event was Kane/RVD vs. Batista/Triple H. This ought to be interesting to see who is going to carry this match. It was a basic tag wrestling match, with nothing special. Kane eventually lost his mask, and ran away, leaving RVD to become the Fantastic 4's bitch. Scott Steiner tried to make the save, but took a beating by the Foursome. Chris Jericho would actually run in and take advantage of the situation. Good finish with Jericho attacking Steiner, but man, that match is going to be a challenge for Jericho to make it look good at all.
LAST WORD: Overall, a better RAW than last week, making RAW's good show/bad show record, in my opinion, to be 2-2. Best RAW or 2003 thus far, but it hardly has the workrate that Smackdown features. I'll give this show a [ B+ ] (B Plus), which is generous, but at least this RAW is watchable compared to most of 2002 and the first 2 shows of 2003. We need some good WRESTLING to go along with the prepared storylines, and this show could be good to go. It's getting too repetitive with matches having street fights or table matches. Chicago was a great crowd, too, as they screamed loudly for the Dudleys.
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