December 4, 2010
Tony Nagle

WWE Monday Night RAW
December 5th, 2005
Charleston, South Carolina

Commentators: Joey Styles & Jerry “the King” Lawler
Ring Announcer: Lillian Garcia

Champions for RAW at the time are as follows:
WWE Champion: John Cena (4/3/2005)
Intercontinental Champion: Ric Flair (09/18/2005)
World Tag Team Champions: Kane and Big Show (11/1/05)
Women's Champion: Trish Stratus (01/09/05)

Opening Segment: The obligatory cold open package/and RAW intro with pyro begins the proceedings. Our hosts are Joey Styles and Jerry "the King" Lawler as they commentate the red brand show from the North Charleston Coliseum in Charleston South Carolina. Ric Flair, with headlines in newspapers all around the country on his arrest, is scheduled to be on Cutting Edge. Also, we got Shawn Michaels and Shelton Benjamin versus Kurt Angle and Carlito. Just looking at that says it will be a good match!

“No Chance in Hell” blares, as well as some horns from a garbage truck! Vince is driving the damn thing! Joey sounds like his pants were crapped on before he even went nuts, with Lawler adding that McMahon has probably never seen a garbage truck before let alone driving one. A consensus was also reached that the chairman was here to take out the trash like he vowed to do the week before. Strutting his way to the ring, Vince walks into a squared circle decorated with the likes of a courtroom. There are two podiums set up, a judicial chair on a platform, and a red rug. Vince starts his talking by saying that last week he was going to take out the trash, meaning Bischoff, for not meeting/setting his objectives. Vince introduces his trash Bischoff to the apparent disdain of the crowd. With the look of a disgraced politician, Eric hits the ring, and with a couple of “You suck!” chants (unbleeped of course), tries to notion that the job is his life, and that he wants Vince to reconsider the potential firing.

Vince (with a pukey expression on his face from the prior whining of Easy E) asks Bischoff if he is a fair man. They both agree, but the fans want no part of it, with the goodbye chant supplementing this. You know the chant I'm talking about, it's in every one out of five wrestling shows there is. Vince also believes everyone should have their day in court, and thus, for the first time ever on RAW, there will be a Trial of Eric Bischoff. Vince is the judge, and he has also appointed defense council and prosecuting attorney. Johnathan Coachman (I'm referring him as Coach for the rest of this) comes out as the defense council. Styles notes that Johnny Cochran would be rolling in his grave while Vince notes in addition to the professional looks, that Coach is rocking Cochran-esque glasses.

Coach tells Bischoff he's got this. Immediately, he says that Bischoff is an ASSHOLE! That's right, a big loud unbleeped asshole! With such an outrageous comment, Coach is quick to back it up saying that Bischoff is not supposed to be a friend of the fans, but he is paid to bring an entertaining and exciting product to the masses. By the end of the case, Coach not only vows to prove Bischoff should still have a job, but should get a raise! Coach also says Bischoff is the greatest GM of all time. Pretty ambitious I say, especially since there is a live petition of 10,000+ fans who would like to be the opposition.

Vince then proceeds to introduce the prosecuting attorney. It is none other than Mick Foley! The Hardcore Legend looks to be at ease, proving to be the antithesis of professional while sporting a Batman lunch box! With the crowd chanting his name, Foley states that no other person has benefited RAW more than Eric Bischoff. To some boos, Foley proves his point by delivering the time-perfected anecdote on how Bischoff forced Tony Schiavone to announce on Monday Nitro that Mankind, who was known as Cactus Jack in WCW, was going to defeat The Rock for the WWE Championship on Raw. It's the butts in the seats story. The irony was that while it was designed to ruin Mick's greatest moment, it instead in a cruel twist of fate (no Hardy included) let half a million viewers switch from Nitro to RAW. In the ratings war, RAW would take the lead on that night (January 4th, 1999) and never relinquish it. Mick also wants to prove that Eric is a failure at providing entertaining, especially to the live fans that generates a cheap pop Vince thanks Foley for his speech as the rest of the trial will take place in a WWE Court of Law and will decide Bischoff's fate. Thus ends the opening segment.

Match #1, Fatal-Four-Way for the World Tag Team Championship, Big Show & Kane (c's) vs. Tomko & Snitsky vs. The Heartthrobs vs. Viscera and Val Venis: After a plug for HBK's book, the medley of Big Show and Kane's theme starts as they are walking to the ring with purpose. Gotta love the dragged pyro stands! Another plug here, but it is for Armageddon and the match with the world tag champions versus SMACKDOWN's Batista and Rey Mysterio. Three tag teams are already in the ring, the teams of Tomko and Snitsky, the Heart Throbs, and Val Venis with Viscera. Instead of naming moves, I'll say exactly what this was: a big squash. Kane and Big Show destroy everyone. Only sign of weakness is when Viscera has a slight advantage over Kane, but when he meets Big Show face to face, it the momentum stops. The ending features Big Show and Kane doing a triple chokeslam on Venis, Romeo, and Tomko! Yep, it was short, but enjoyable. RT: 2:40

Trial Part 1: Vince looks content in his chair, Chris Masters as a baliff is a nice touch, Foley looks relaxed, but Bischoff looks like he wants to get a root canal instead. Vince bangs his gavel (or in Simpsons terms, the clown), and notes the trial is now in session.

After some reprimanding from Vince, I mean, the HONORABLE Mr. McMahon, Mick Foley brings out his first witness, Stephanie McMahon! Looking hot as always, Steph takes the stand. Foley first asks Stephanie, who has General Manager experience of her own, did Bischoff conduct himself in a professional manner while as a General Manager. Stephanie sidesteps the question by stating that both she and brother Shane believe Eric should be removed. Her reason is obvious as we are given a flashback from SMACKDOWN in October of 2002. Halloween party as Steph, a witch with some of the most cleavage this side of Elvira, meets up with “Vince”. Of course, it turns out to be Bischoff under that mask. Bischoff kisses Steph all the way down to the table, and Stephanie (in the present tense) says not only did he steal the likeness of her father (IT'S HALLOWEEN, NOT GOOD EVIDENCE!) and violated her, it has taken years for her to take that vomitious taste out of her mouth. Coach says he objects, and Vince fires back with, “SHUT UP!” Major laughter from the audience, and everyone watching. Daughter McMahon acknowledges the judge as daddy which drew another hilarious facial expression before she corrected herself. Joey notes it will be a long night for the current GM as we go to break. Match #2, Mickie James vs. Victoria: A small vignette for the Tribute to the Troops plays with Art Myers (Director of Air Force Services) being recognized as a audience member at the arena. A huge pop for him, deservedly so. Trish's music hits, but Mickie James is the wrestler here tonight. Accompanied by Trish Stratus, Women's Champion, Mickie's opposition will be Victoria, accompanied by Torrie Wilson and Candice Michelle. Mickie gets the early advantage with a rollup for a two, then a snapmare takedown leading a dropkick to the face of Victoria. Nice can shot on Trish! Victoria pleads with Mickie, but like a veteran, Victoria takes her down and then starts stomping her competitor down. Mickie is edged out of the ring, but before Candice and Torrie can get an advantage, Mickie comes out swinging. Victoria tries to break the momentum, but Mickie cuts her off at the pass and puts her back in the ring. A press-slam from Victoria to Mickie gets a two. Victoria then imitates Andre the Giant by stepping on Mickie's cans, does a backflip onto said cans, and gets another two. An modified hip toss by Victoria starts to target Mickie's arm. After working on the arm, Mickie regains momentum by doing a hurricurana, then does a elbow to the face for a two. Torrie Wilson and Candice Michelle try to interfere to no avail, but the distractions are enough for Victoria to roll Mickie up for a three. Trish and Mickie are pissed! RT: 3:40

Trial Pt. 2: Tajiri is on the witness stand, as via a translator (Tajiri is speaking in Japanese) says that he is a world-renowned star. Eric he claims ignores this. Tajiri wishes a pregnant rhinoceros shoved its mighty horn up Bischoff's anal crevice. Hey, his words not mine! Or the translator's? Tajiri, in English now, says he hopes Bischoff gets fired. Coach says he has no questions for Tajiri, but does a request from Eric (in respect to the court) that Tajiri go back to the arena because he has a match with Triple H! Tajiri goes into a rage, but is quickly carried out by Masters. Coach notes that from his client it was only done for the spirit of competition and not out of spite. Foley then introduces Mae Young (w/ Moolah) as his next witness as break time hits.

A hype video for Armageddon airs as Mae, with no direct correlation to ANYTHING, explains how Eric has no penis. Coach objects, and McMahon notes it is speculatory. Foley says Mae is going somewhere with it (Vince notes it better be good). Bad Blood 2003 is shown with Mae giving Eric a liplock then a bronco buster. Less said about this the better. Mae is doing something I can't explain eloquently, and Coach objects to that because Mae is taunting Bischoff! Vince finally sides with the defense, and Mae steps down. For the first witness on the defense, Masters is called. That's right, THE BALIFF! Coach asks what the man's name is, and he responds as Chris Masters. Vince cuts in saying that perjury is committed. Masters is NOT his real name, that being Chris Nordesky, and therefore, the man is disqualified! Eric's night is not going well, poor guy.

Backstage: Shelton's getting ready, and here comes a preacher! I mean it's good ol' HBK himself! Shawn runs down his college credentials, but notes his WWE career has been a big fat zero. The night they faced off (SHAMELESS SELF-PROMOTION, I DID THAT REVIEW TOO!) Shelton was never better, but since that contest has not been the same. HBK notes he himself isn't a popular guy with an attitude problem. However, he has had lots of success. He asks Shelton where his attitude problem is. Benjamin shoves Michaels aside saying don't worry about him. Smiling, Michaels asked himself, “What wasn't so hard was it?” A rundown of Cutting Edge and the tag match leads to break.

Trial Pt. 3: Vince asks for another witness, but Coach hurriedly off his cell phone tells his honor that a witness is coming, and that with a shadow beyond a doubt will let Bischoff keep his job.

Match #3, Chavo Guerrero vs. Lance Cade: “Ooo, Chavoo!” Here comes a rarity, babyface Chavo Guerrero! His uncle Eddie's death is well documented so I won't bring it up too much. However, I must note that the hairstyle is still looking like Kerwin White, and that is an almost automatic win. His opponent will be Lance Cade on this night, and Cade was already in the ring complete with jobber no entrance! Massive “EDDIE!” chants proceed the match, with a lockup starting it off. Chavo gets Lance to the corner, Lance switches, almost clean break, but instead pounds on Chavo while getting some heat. Lance whips Chavo, but Chavo kicks out, and the younger Guerrero starts punching Cade multiple times into the ropes. Lance reverses an whip and puts Chavo over the top rope. Lance slides on out, and like a shark smelling blood, rams Chavo's back in the post! Chavo is then rolled back into the ring, and given a back breaker. After a two count and some bitch slaps, Lance gets a punch to the mid-section by Chavo. Lance goes off the ropes only to be dropkicked by Chavito. Momentum is barely on the side of Chavo as he pounds Lance's face in, only to be carried hard into the ring ropes, and then Lance opens up on him some more. Lance tries a high and tight suplex, but it gets reversed into a DDT! The point to the heavens makes it academic as Chavo executes the frog splash for the win. Some replays some the ending sequence. Match was mostly a punch fest, but it was fine. RT: 4:00

Trial Pt. 4: Bischoff has a cocky smirk on his face as Coach is now questioning DAIVARI of all people. While he begins his rant in Arabic-dialect, Daivari in English passionately expresses how Bischoff gave him a chance while no one else would while taking cheap shots at Foley for being a sucky commish. Here comes another laugher moment! Vince actually didn't hear a word, because, “I was listening to Ashlee Simpson on my new iPod, and Christ she sucks! Vince then tells Daivari he won't ref Angle's match, and that a short recess is in order. Foley, chiming back to the commissioner days, proclaims that recess rules with, HOLY MOON PIES FROM THE LUNCHBOX BATMAN! He even had the common sense to bring his mascot puppy and a RC Cola! Aw, he even gave a moon pie to Bischoff, what a nice guy! Cutting Edge is next!

Cutting Edge: Technically this should be the second one, but there was difficulties hazy to my memory, so this is actually the first one! Getting heat with a hot lady like Lita reeks nothing short but awesomeness! Proclaiming the show will be controversial and envelope-pushing, Edge introduces himself and his sexpot. Lita asks Edge if he was staring at her boobs, and while laughing, Edge exclaims everyone else on the roster is PG-13! While ranting about Demetri Young from Survivor Series, Edge says people are scared because not only was the show cancelled last week, but the guest (Flair) backed out this week. (Author's note: Or taking it in the butt from IRS, and I don't mean Rotunda!) While South Carolina is claimed as Flair country, Lita retakes it as Edge country for cheap heat. There's a dirty joke to be had in here. Edge said if Flair was on the show, he would say to him that with all the years Flair has been Dirtiest Player in the Game they caught up to him. Edge is also nice enough to recap why Flair is mired in controversy, to the extent of pulling a guy over on the road and beating the crap out of him! With pictures on the Titantron, Edge contrasts Flair from what he was to what he is now a mugshot-posin', handcuff-wearin', road-rage committing convict! WOOOOOO! Edge does a drunken imitation of the Flair pose, all well and good. Lita questions the incident as perhaps Flair is insecure, being reduced from beating men in the ring to beating men outside the ring. While Edge continues to ramble, here comes Michael Hayes and Sgt. Slaughter! Edge especially makes fun of Hayes with the Jack Daniels and 8-Ball bit. Isn't that an internet meme of some sort? Anywhos, the legends are doing the cut-signal, but Edge wants no part of it, and says he wants Vince himself to tell him he's done. Michael goes on a verbal rampage about how the kids today are so disrespectful of the legends of this business, how the legends lived back then, and in consequence gave the kids guaranteed contracts, days off, rental cars, etc. Hayes also gets in Edge's face about his main eventer status, noting he has been champ zero times! Edge gets Hayes' mic cut off, and tells Hayes he is nothing because Terry Gordy isn't here. HOLY CRAP WHAT A BURN! Gordy is dead! Hayes then tells Edge the only reason why he has the show is because of Lita! Beatdown of both legends (including Slaughter, who is nothing but dead weight here) ensue. While Hayes got a shot in, Lita jumped on him and gave him a rake to the eyes which lead to the briefcase crescendo by Edge. Edge and Lita leave to a trail of destruction. Well-done promo segment!

Match #4, Tajiri vs. Triple H: WWE Rewind presents us Big Show calling Triple H a POS for taking out Ric Flair. Tajiri is waiting in the ring, jobber entrance, while Triple H comes out to his usual intro. Tajiri gets some opening offense in, but off the springboard elbow, gets a shot to the neck for his troubles. Triple H then unloads on Tajiri, following up with a suplex. With some laughter, Triple H mocks Tajiri with a faux kung-fu stance, but Tajiri gets some shots in with a successful springboard elbow that time. Tajiri then counters a whip into Tarantula, but Triple H counters by throwing him to the outside. I don't think anyone else has done that. H then shoves Tajiri back into the ring, and gets a kick to the jaw for the efforts. A reversal from HHH gets to the finish of spinebuster and Pedigree. And that is all he wrote. Some replays show the high-impact finish. RT: 3:00

Trial Pt. 5: Vince says the trial continues. That should have been a voiceover cue! Coach is then asked to bring out the next witness, and while Simon Dean is announced, the music of the Boogeyman appears! Worms and all, while Vince asks him to step down, Boogeyman makes it perfectly clear that Bischoff will be gone as GM. Clock smashing and ballyhoo, the defense looks spooked! Vince has ANOTHER goofy facial expression while Foley looks perfectly relaxed eating yet, ANOTHER MOON PIE! Joey Styles ends with a very subtle and very subdued, oh my god.”

Back from break: Rita Crosby is shown to the crowd as she is interviewing WWE superstars over the course of the week to come about the Iraq trip. Cut to Triple H being a dick backstage with Big Show standing toe to toe with him. Show rips into Triple H for being a bully, and that the world will know if Triple H is that tough standing in the ring with him.

Trial Pt. 6: Back to the courtroom, Mick brings one last witness. MARIA, our lovably adorable retard goddess. Maria immediately asks Foley if she can be questioned with Mr. Socko. Coach and Bischoff giggle like little kids as Foley obliges (with permission from honorable McMahon of course) and whips a sock out of his junk drawer. Maria giggles herself, then transforms into the smartest-sounding woman on the planet, telling the court how Bischoff was malicious in his actions and that the lockerroom is in disarray. As soon as she's done, she reverts back to giggly Maria like Jane was from the first Naked Gun movie as she went from killer to normal again. All four men check out that sweet ass as Coach tries to get one more witness, but honorable McMahon adjourns the case. The closing arguments will be held back in the arena, and Vince hopes the defense council has a damn good one. Clown is down! After a SMACKDOWN recap, the tag team main event is next!

Match #5, Shelton Benjamin & Shawn Michaels vs. Carlito & Kurt Angle: Three Wise Guys, a made-for-TV movie starring Roddy Piper, premieres on USA! Out first is Kurt Angle and Daivari to bleeped “You suck!” chants. Carlito comes out next, with a recap showing how he lost to Shawn Michaels the week before. Shelton Benjamin comes out to hometown pop, with HBK in pursuit as a legend pop. Shelton and Carlito start it off with a lockup center of the ring, but Carlito is put into a side headlock. Poor Carlito tried to shove Benjamin into the ropes, but instead gets put in a armbar! #1001, who knows? Carlito does reverse out of a hammerlock, but gets decked by the Golden Gopher. Apparently Shelton has a attitude problem with tons of right hands, as HBK looks on and says, “here ya go!” Carlito gets to the ropes for protection and tags in Angle. Benjamin has a snarl and Angle smiles, but the sentiment is the same: their games faces are on. Angle works on Benjamin's ankle with a single-leg takedown, but then Shelton gets out of it and does a armdrag. Shelton attempts his T-Bone, but Angle squeezes out of it just in time for Carlito to take a body press. Benjamin further impresses but landing his feet from the German Suplex Angle attempted, and does a heel kick for good measure! Benjamin is on quite a roll as it is time for some sponsor adverts. Oh joy!

Back to the match where Shawn Michaels is now in the match with Carlito. Michaels whips Carlito into the ropes, but gets an elbow to the face and then subsequent stomps. HBK reverses another whip from Carlito into a neckbreaker. Michaels, looking punch-drunk, does the hot tag to Benjamin. Shelton does the usual babyface takedown bit complete with a neckbreaker on his knee! Yee-ouch! Carlito almost got Shelton over the top, but Shelton goes to the ring apron, catches Carlito in the ropes and does a nice-looking kneelift. Angle tries to take out Benjamin, but eats a clothesline off the apron! Daivari yanked Shelton off the apron and allows Angle to get a shot in from behind on distraction. Carlito rolls Benjamin in for a pin attempt but only one. CCC loses his cool a little, but drags Benjamin into the corner for some double-team action plus a tag to Angle. Benjamin tries to get some momentum now back center of the ring, but eats a belly-to-belly throw. More double-teaming as Carlito is tagged in and gets more shots on Benjamin. Angle is tagged in again as a German gets only a two. More pin attempts leads into a waistlock. HBK rallies the crowd, and Shelton gets a reverse-DDT on a Angle-Slam attempt! Both men struggle to the corners, but both men tag in their partners as HBK goes batcrap on Carlito! HBK does his moves of doom (atomic drop, clothesline, slam) leading to the elbow, which connects. Going for the superkick, Benjamin insteads goes to the apron and tags himself in! Benjamin misses a high crossbody which is all she wrote as Carlito gets the win. Disappointment and resentment sets in for both men as replays show the action. RT: 8:00

Backstage, Triple H meets with Judge McMahon to say he wants Bischoff to stay because he can easily manipulate them. Vince takes this under consideration while he lets Triple H introduce himself to STEPHANIE! Keep in mind, they're storyline divorced for 3 years, yet are married in real life! Oh the mystery here!

Final Arguments: The truck was off to the side of the ramp during the matches, but now is in the center of the aisle as all the sides of the case are back in the decorated ring. Foley is the first one to close, saying from HLA to Daivari as Angle's referee, Erica (yes he said it like that) Bischoff abused his power for too long. Mick then says we have a garbage truck, time to take out the trash to the pop of the crowd! As for the defense, Bischoff cuts off Coach at the pass, and he speaks for himself! Bischoff starts by saying that his position is not a joke. He admits he has done horrible things, including stuff done to McMahon's family. His point is that when he was first came into the WWE, he was told by Vince personally that controversy creates cash (same name of his autobiography), and that there is no denying he has made plenty of it. Also he admits he doesn't care about the fans, but he cares about the money, and he has proven time after time that he successfully separates people from cash. To further his point, he says two words, Elimination Chamber Just that name alone has sold out arenas around the world, merchandising, etc. Eric brainstorms a Chamber match for the next RAW Pay-Per-View for the WWE Championship. In addition, Eric says both he and Vince are alike because not only are they among the most hated men but the most respectful. They overcome obstacles and get things done. So he pleads with Vince to let him keep his job and make a fortune. Vince says that Bischoff has made some good points so it'll be taken under consideration, but hold the phone! The music hitting can only mean one man is coming out, and that is WWE CHAMP JOHN CENA! The crowd reaction is mostly positive, though in recent months it hit the mixed sides.

Cena tells Judge McMahon he isn't here to tell what he thinks of Bischoff, though it's no secret he thinks he is a jackoff. Again, his words not mine. Cena instead goes on the beaten path of beating the supposed good name of Bischoff of taking away the best part of RAW. His prime example is when Kurt Angle comes to the ring, Bischoff pushes a button that bleeps the fans saying, YOU SUCK at him. Not only is it because Bischoff doesn't like it, but Cena also contradicts the we're alike scenario by saying McMahon is a pioneer of freedom of speech (notes that McMahon looks ridiculous to the smiles of the faces) while Bischoff is censorship. Cena introduces 10,000 surprise witnesses, of course the crowd. Cena hoists the top turnbuckle and asks the crowd should Bischoff remain GM. The crowd boos heartily. He asks if Bischoff should be fired. The crowd cheers heartily. As an exclamation point, Cena says the crowd interpreted Bischoff's career in two letters, FU!Vince then takes it to the people asking if they want to see the Elimination Chamber on PPV. The crowd cheers and Vince says that Bischoff has merit. So at the next PPV New Year's Revolution, the WWE Championship will be defended inside the Chamber. Millions around the world will see it, but not Bischoff who immediately swallows a huge lump. With great gusto, Vince yells at Bischoff, “YERRRRRRRRRRRRR FIRRRRRRRRRRRRED”!Bischoff gets an FU (or AA to you youngsters) for his abrupt unemployment. Adding insult to injury via an analogy, Cena kicks Bischoff in the ass on the way out, of course ropes replacing the proverbial door. Vince then promptly throws Bischoff in the truck, and McMahon drives away as RAW ends. Styles and Lawler go batcrap insane over the future of RAW!

Final Words: This is one of those shows where 'sport' definitely takes a backseat to 'entertainment'. With about a month to go until New Year's Revolution, they had the 'angle' show really enjoyable to watch. While the main event tag match was far and away the better contest, none of the other matches were that bad either. The trial by itself was an entertaining piece of business that surprisingly has held up well, even five years down the road. Also, the Cutting Edge segment is as underrated as they go, proving that Edge has heat and can do anything he damn well pleases. If there is a down piece though it would either be the Divas match, or it would go to Mae Young in the courtroom, because that piece was truly unnecessary albeit brief. As long as you keep expectations of five-star everything at the door, then this is a solid episode of TV.

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