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PostSubject: 1994 Discussion   Sat Aug 11, 2012 10:15 pm

Discuss Raw in 1994.
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PostSubject: Re: 1994 Discussion   Sun Aug 12, 2012 4:48 am

Bret Hart vs 1-2-3 Kid - WWF Championship - Raw 11/07/1994
Really simple logic to the match but it works so wonderfully well and it takes a messed up failure to not make this formula work. Bret is the champ and a dominant one at that and generally seen as the best pure wrestler in the company. 1-2-3 Kid is the young newcome who's really quick and likes to fly about. He's getting a once in a lifetime world title show against the excellence of execution and he's gotta have the match of his life basically to even stand a chance of winning. It's a brilliant underdog story and who doesn't love a good underdog tale?

Waltman is the ideal guy for the underdog role which is quick speed and high flying moveset which makes it second nature for the crowd to get behind the young kid who's throwing himself about the ring. Kid knows he cant outwrestle Bret so goes exactly for that method of flying around and hoping his speed can catch the champ off guard. This is exactly how the match starts to instantly get the crowd right into it from the get go and set the setting and in turn the rest of the match up perfectly. Bret's little face expressions are a nice touch to the match which clearly show how he was underestimating this young guy and you can see him start to take him more serious.

This of course leads to Bret gaining the upper hand and keeping Waltman down to work up more crowd sympathy/support for kid. I thought the rope break and the false finish was a really nice touch to the match and I love the twist they added to it. Bret seeing the foot on the rope but not the ref and demanding that Hebner reverse the decision. Gets Bret over as a great face champ and adds a little bit extra to the match rather than the generic you could see this in just about any promotion type match.

Kid's comeback is brilliant which him quite literally flinging himself all around the ring to try and get a quick pin on Bret and score the upset. JR calling every top rope move by Kid a moonsault was a bit tedious though. Dunno if anyone else feels this way too but Savage on commentary really annoyed me. He's got a fucking annoying shithole of a voice to have to listen to for a whole match let alone a whole show. A promo is fine with me even if I'm not gonna hop on his dick every time he says "OOOH YEAH!" but having to listen to him all match was too much. Another little touch that Bret added to the match that I really enjoyed was him trying to take a page out of Kid's own playbook and going to the top rope but failing and in turn returning Kid the upper hadn in the match. Bret was really great in the older more experienced and simply better wrestler role and played his role in the match brilliantly. To be fair though Kid played his role to a tee also which of course made for a great face vs face title match. Really enjoyable match and one of my favourite TV matches WWF/E have ever put on behind a meer select few.

****
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PostSubject: Re: 1994 Discussion   Sun Aug 12, 2012 4:54 am

Raw 1994 (11/07) - Bret Hart & British Bulldog vs Owen Hart & Jim Neidhart
This one features particularly impressive fundamental tag team wrestling woven into a family feud storyline. With the feud and family history involved it made it easy to get into. Plus these guys always enjoyed working with each other and made everything smooth. Favourite moments of the match are the already well talked about Owen/Bret chase sequence and the Anvil roaring like an animal at the camera as he crushed Bulldog's head. Both moments summed up the respective characters of the heels exceedingly well. My thoughts on Owen's character during this sibling rivalry are basically word for word what Andy already said. There's a well put together isolation period by the heels, who want nothing to do with a pissed off Bret Hart. They try to slow things down and keep things in check, whereas the faces wanna break lose and serve up some revenge. That clash made for a nice simple story. They use all the classic FIP mechanisms and there's not much I could fault about that section. They needed to do more to make it fantastic but it was just fine for what it was. Like Andy I also get annoyed by multiple pinfall attempts as hope spots during a FIP section. The hot tag was a bit of a letdown but there was still enough payback and a fitting enough ending to make it good. This was very well done overall and felt complete but no one area in particular excelled enough to make it special, so I have to disagree with Cal there. I'm glad I watched it though and I'd happily watch it again off my own back down the track.

***1/2
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PostSubject: Re: 1994 Discussion   Sun Aug 12, 2012 4:55 am

Raw 1994 (08/15) - 123 Kid vs Owen Hart
I'll reiterate Cal's general thesis in that it's a fun match involving some flashy sequences, but has enough meat to it to give it something more. They work through some pretty slick exchanges, although I believe they had room to make them even better execution wise. I would've liked a little more 123 Kid getting bashed in and less domination from him, but what they gave us was still effective. They go hold for hold for the first half of the match, Owen gets outclassed so he decides to switch up to a powerhouse brawling style and work over the back. That was a nice little story and Owen makes Kid look awesome in there. Plus it's all very extravagant and exciting for this time period. I just would've liked the FIP section expanded on and the second half of the match to be more fleshed out. Instead the comeback felt cheap and they sorta rushed it to the point where nothing meant anything in the closing sequences. With 10 minutes and two guys working really hard they got a good match there. With 15 minutes, a feud and a bit more depth, they could've got something really great.

***1/4
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PostSubject: Re: 1994 Discussion   Sun Aug 12, 2012 4:56 am

1994 Raw - Razor Ramon vs Shawn Michaels
Only just remembered that I watched this probably a week before the poll began. So there's no need to go back and watch it again. Forgotten specific sequences and such, just remember what I thought the quality was. Really good and a very strong match. I know Andy loves this and while I wouldn't go that far myself, it's one of my favourite Ramon performances. Also, these two complimented each other well in the ring and HBK was at his typical pre injury level of greatness. Not just from a wrestling standpoint, but his character portrayal was just spot on. Some sections are a little dull, it gets a bit repetitive and basic at times - but it definitely deserves a shout.

***1/2
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PostSubject: Re: 1994 Discussion   Sun Aug 12, 2012 5:06 am

Razor Ramon & 1-2-3 Kid Vs The Quebecers - WWF Raw Feb 21st 1994

Lengthy TV match, around 25 minutes (probably 30 in total, but commercials cut it shorter for TV). Solid match, though not quite as good as I was expecting (I guess I shouldn't have gone in expecting too much from it lol). Some cool moments in it, but overall it was a strange match, with Razor playing the FIP for a while (made more sense for Kid to do it), then he gets an underwhelming hot tag, only for Kid to finally place the FIP for a little while too. Best parts were the few few minutes of the match, with the Quebecers getting a cheap shot in on Razor, then going after Kid, only for Kid to fight back, and Razor to come in and help. Loved the spot where Razor hit the fall away slam on Kid, throwing him back onto one of the Quebecers. Johnny Polo (aka Raven) keeps getting involved at the start and distracting the ref, stopping any momentum Razor and The Kid get. Eventually they get pissed off and take him out, allowing the match to be more fair. End was a bit sucky too, with HBK running in and breaking up the 3 count (which I think he actually missed lol. I'm sure the referee counted the 3 before HBK touched Razor). I'd give it **1/2, because it was still a solid match, just nothing to really go out of your way to see.

Rick Martel, Irwin R. Schyster, Jeff Jarrett and The Headshrinkers Vs Bob Holly, Tatanka, The 1-2-3 Kid and The Smoking Gunns - WWF Raw April 4th 1994

Nice 10 man tag to end the show. It was around 13 minutes long, and the match never slowed down. It wasn't going at some super fast WORK RATE~! pace, but it was still a faster than average pace . The Headshrinkers dominated the match early on, not even allowing the usual "baby face starts match off hot, then gets beat down" spot that tends to happen in, well, most tag matches these days lol. Billy Gunn did a pretty good job of being the FIP, love his selling of the clothesline where he flips around, always makes his opponent look like a fucking beast. Once Billy makes a tag, they seem to go with a HIP (heel in peril lol) spot, which actually kinda worked because it was Martel desperately trying to get the tag, with Holly essentially teasing him by allowing him to get close and pulling him back, and because the fans hate Martel, they were loving it.

IRS and Kid were the pair in the ring to finish things off, with some good sequences between them. During one of the pin fall attempts, all the 8 guys on the apron ran into the ring and began brawling, then went to the outside, allowing IRS to get the pin on Kid.

Really enjoyed this one. Not super high on the old star ratings, but an extremely enjoyable TV match that did have some quality to it too. ***1/4

Shawn Michaels Vs Razor Ramon - WWF Raw August 1st 1994

Andy has talked about this match before, saying how much he loves it, and I am right there with him. This is a pretty damn great match, not just for TV. Shawn and Razor have awesome chemistry, and it shows throughout this match. Diesel is great on the outside, making everything he does mean something. The first time he gets involved, he knocks Razor down on the outside, and very nearly causes a countout. The next time he interferes, its to distract the referee while HBK attempts to nail Razor with the belt. Then the third time is to simply stick his boot in the ring for Shawn to drive Razor's head into, allowing him to get the win. Not going to make my list though, but fuck it, I'll nominate it because its awesome. ***1/2
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PostSubject: Re: 1994 Discussion   Sun Aug 12, 2012 5:07 am

1-2-3 Kid Vs Owen Hart - WWF Raw August 15th 1994

I'm sure most people here has already seen their KOTR 94 match (if not, its about 5 minutes of MOVES~!, really fun to watch). This is an extended version of that (like, triple the time lol), with some added psychology as Owen does a wonderful job working the back, followed by some beautiful selling of his knee when he misses a knee drop from the ropes. Kid locks in a half Boston Crap, while Owen tries his best to hold on, before The Anvil runs in and takes out Kid. Owen still sells the knee while Anvil beats the crap out of the Kid, and continues to sell it while he puts Kid in the Sharpshooter! A really fantastic match for this amount of time on TV, and a hell of a lot better than their KOTR match which was just a move fest lol. ***1/2

Bret Hart & The British Bulldog Vs Owen Hart & Jim Neidhart - WWF Raw November 7th 1994

Everyone knows about The Clique tag match from Action Zone in 94, but why the hell does nobody every mention the Hart Foundation tag match? Seriously, this is every bit as fucking awesome! It is a completely different match to the Clique tag, but quality wise is right up there. Bulldog does a nice job playing the FIP, but its Owen and Neidhart that carry this part of the match with their heel control segment. I can't remember if it was Andy or Viva (could have been both, actually), who mentioned how awesome it is when the heels really work hard at preventing the face from getting the tag, and I have to say that Owen and Neidhart were fucking fantastic at it here. Small things like grabbing the leg and dragging him away, to bigger things like Owen forcing Bret to chase after him on the outside just as Bulldog is getting close to the ropes. Bret is awesome in this too, doing some rather swank looking spots when he finally gets the hot tag. End is nothing spectacular, just The Anvil tapping to Bret, but the rest of the match really is something special. I'm nominating this fucker, even if it most likely will not be on my list! ****
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PostSubject: Re: 1994 Discussion   Sun Aug 12, 2012 5:07 am

Bret Hart & Davey Boy Smith v Owen Hart & Jim Neidhart (12/7/94)
- Good match, although I don't think I'll vote for it. Pretty much co-signing everything that Cal already said, although I still think the Cliq tag is a fair few steps above it. Would've preferred Bret playing face in peril, but him on the apron did give me my favourite moment of the match, as Owen cheapshots Bret by running across the ring and popping him on the apron, so Bret sprints after the little punk and chases him all around the ring before Chioda manages to get a grip on Bret, allowing Owen to sneak in and hit the NEW~ Hart Attack on Davey Boy. Owen plays such a hateable character, so you're almost desperate for Bret to catch him just so he can clean his clock. Owen running with his mouth wide open looking utterly terrified is priceless. It's like any cocky little brother who likes pulling his older, more reserved brother's strings because he knows that no matter how much he does it, the older brother is only gonna get pissed off and tell him to get out of his room. Then he pushes it too far and the older brother's gonna paste the annoying little brother, at which point the kid gets the fuck outta dodge and calls for his pops. Or Stu, as it were. Post-hot tag seemed a little disjointed with Bret coming in and cleaning house before settling into a slower rhythm and Owen willingly going back to the apron. Maybe I'm too used to the hot tag being a precursor to them going Hell on wheels to the finish, I dunno. It just seemed much less "hot" than it should've been. Still, can't complain about a Hell of a lot here. Worth a watch for sure. ***1/2
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