WWE RAW 20th Anniversary DVD Collection Review: Benoit Matches On DVD, Years Missing, More
- July 21, 1997: The next episode, the third from 1997, featured The Hart Foundation (Bret "Hitman" Hart, Owen Hart & The British Bulldog) in Canada, at the peak of the U.S. vs. Canada feud, facing "Stone Cold" Steve Austin, Dude Love and their surprise partner, The Undertaker. It also featured the famous clash between Bret Hart and Vince McMahon after it was announced that Shawn Michaels would be the special referee for the SummerSlam main event between Undertaker and Hart. It was an awesome crowd, and a great episode.
- September 22, 1997: A historic episode, as it marked the first RAW from Madison Square Garden. It is the fourth and final episode on the set from 1997. The show featured Ahmed Johnson defeating The Rock in a WWF Intercontinental Title Tournament Quarterfinal match, Owen Hart defeating Brian Pillman via DQ in a WWF Intercontinental Title Tournament Semi-final match, Cactus Jack defeating Triple H in a Street Fight and Bret Hart defeating Goldust. However, the real highlight was one of the most defining moments in WWF history, with Steve Austin jumpstarting the Austin - Vince McMahon feud by delivering his first Stone Cold Stunner to Vince.
- April 13, 1998: Surprisingly, although 1998 was a landmark year for the WWF as they turned the tide in the Monday Night Wars and started to reach new heights with "Stone Cold" Steve Austin on top, this was the only episode from that year. I would have expected the episode featuring the Mike Tyson - Austin confrontation on the set, but it didn't make the cut. This was one of the weaker episodes on the collection, but definitely deserves a post on the set for its historical significance. The episode broke the Monday Nitro ratings streak, and changed the direction of the Monday Night Wars. The event was headlined by a bait-and-switch scheduled WWE title match between Vince McMahon and Steve Austin (with one arm tied behind his back). Before the match could take place, Mick Foley debuted the Dude Love character the attacked Austin.
- January 4, 1999: This is one of the most talked about episodes of RAW in history as it featured Mankind defeating The Rock for the WWF Championship. However, what is probably more remembered than the match is Tony Schiavone spoiling the title win on a live episode of Nitro since RAW was taped. Instead of keeping fans tuned into Nitro, a huge number of viewers changed the channel to RAW. RAW ended up winning the ratings battle that night and would never lose to Nitro again.
- March 22, 1999: The RAW before WrestleMania 15, which featured the infamous "beer truck" incident. Also on the episode, The Rock faced Mankind with the winner refereeing the main event, and Steve Austin faced Paul Wight (The Big Show) just weeks after Wight jumped to WWF from WCW. Another classic that deserved to be included.
- May 10, 1999: The highest rated RAW in history. With Monday Nitro on hiatus due to the NBA finals, RAW scored an insane 8.1 rating. The main event also featured one of the most star studded matches in the show's history, with Steve Austin, The Rock & Vince McMahon defeating The Undertaker, Triple H and Shane McMahon after Austin pinned Shane. Shawn Michaels was the special referee for the bout.
- March 26, 2001: A historic - and surreal - episode, it was the famous RAW And Nitro Simulcast after WWF purchased WCW right before WrestleMania 17. The first of two Chris Benoit matches on the collection is on this episode, with Benoit teaming with the Hardy Boys to face Edge, Christian & Kurt Angle. Despite the star studded main event with The Rock & "Stone Cold" Steve Austin defeating The Undertaker & Kane, the episode will always be most remembered for the closing angle featuring Vince announcing the purchase of WCW, only for Shane McMahon to appear on Nitro and announce that he now the owner.
Short URL: http://winc.cc/Uc9yXq