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We come back from a break and go to the announcers at ringside. They have Roman Reigns live on the big screen. Cole asks how the recovery is going. Reigns says he’s getting stronger every single day and getting better but he would feel better if he was there live. If he was there, he’d deliver a Superman punch. JBL asks about The Authority and how he would feel if they lose power. Reigns says that’s a stupid question and everyone already knows how he feels about that scumbag Seth Rollins and The Authority. Reigns says he will be back around this time next month and we can believe that.

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November 23rd, 2014 from RRDotNet 🙂 on Vimeo.

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The Monday Night War Review: Episode Twelve- ‘The War Gets Electrified’

-Continuing along with another episode that focuses on a single person during the War, and in this case it’s all about The Rock. I hope they just toss in something about Juventud doing his Rock impersonation on Nitro.

-Opening Awesomeness!

-We start this episode with Nitro crushing RAW thanks to the n.W.o, and right on cue we get the standard “Vince made everyone and Turner depleted the WWF and used those guys to get to the top.” Again ask the AWA what it is like to be depleted.

-Cole admits the WWE was in trouble and they were hanging on by the skin of their teeth. We are in August of 1996 and Taker mentions their product was soft and getting hammered by the edgier WCW. JR up next and he mentions he was in talent relations and was told they had to get new talent to replace what WCW had stolen.

-As a third generation promoter, Vince was well equipped to make new stars, and they put over how the WWF was a family business. That leads into discussion of the Samoan family, and how they have been fixtures in the WWE for decades. They discuss the Anoa’i family and put over the Wild Samoans, Peter Maivia, and Yokozuna.

-A new member of the family was set to make his wrestling debut. The Rock shows up and calls Vince a father figure and how he remembers shaking his hand at 11 years old. We get home video footage of Duane cutting promos as a kid and they are pretty funny as you would expect. Patterson mentioned the idea to Vince, and he decided to give him a shot due to his family lineage. Pat watched him work, and told Vince he want this kid yesterday, not tomorrow. JR again as he says he saw a big, well conditioned athlete that was driven. Vince calls him a clean, cut All American athlete with a great heritage.

-The Rock says he spent a ton of time in a warehouse with Tom Pritchard. He was pitched the name of Rocky Maivia and he hated it. He wanted to make it on his own and not ride on his family’s name. Vince convinced him by telling him that it was a way to honor his family since he was the first third generation star.

-The WWF hyped his introduction with vignettes, and we see one of the first ones to appear on Superstars. Cody mentions he was watching from a fan perspective and the way he took it was that Rocky was going to be the greatest thing since sliced bread. Daniel Bryan says the same and that when you are hyped that much you have to deliver.

-Rocky made his debut at MSG in November of 1996 at Survivor Series. They discuss how debuting at a PPV shows the company has big plans for you. JR says that he truly believed The Rock was a blue chipper when he debuted that night. Daniel Bryan brings up the hair and the stuff Rocky came out wearing and was already disappointed. Roman Reigns mentions you could see there was charisma, but you could see he was searching for something. Those in the back felt the debut was a strong one, but good feelings didn’t last. They discuss how the character was cheesy, and while it would have been great in 1986, in 1996 it was horrible.

-Over in WCW they were full of strong heels and anti-heroes, and Orton admits it was more fun watching Nitro. Foley mentions that he had to begrudgingly admit that WCW had the much better show. In the WWF they continued on with the happy, smiling babyface and the funs turned on that shit quickly.

-They did what they could to cover up The Rocky Sucks chants, but it was starting to get hard to drown them out. Vince talks about how you can push all you want to have a character to go one way, but when the fans aren’t buying it nothing you can do. The Rock was frustrated because he was doing everything asked of him, and JBL laughs as he mentions the fans and half the boys in the back were chanting “Rocky Sucks.”

-While he was stuck playing this character, Steve Austin was being the anti-hero and was getting over huge with the crowd. Seeing this Vince decided to push the envelope in a last ditch attempt to compete with WCW. The Rock was injured and took the summer off and then got the call from JR that they were turning him heel and having him join The Nation. The Rock loved it and only asked that he got a chance to say what he feels after the turn. We then get his famous interview where he crushed the crowd for the months of “Rocky Sucks” and “Die Rocky Die” chants. Just night and day between the two characters, and you could clearly see they finally were on to something with The Rock.

-Ambrose talks about how the Nation was perfect for the Rock as they were a rough and tough group. They have him a chance to shed that cheesy gimmick he had, and it helped bring out the arrogance he always had inside of him.

-As we get to 1998 the strangle hold WCW once held was weakening thanks to the new crop of stars in the WWF. The Rock got so over they eventually had to make him the focus of the Nation and that is how we get Simmons being turfed from the group. Austin mentions that once Rock took over the Nation and started getting all the mic time you knew he was going to be money.

-April 13, 1998 RAW beats Nitro for the very first time, and the momentum continues over the summer. A big part of that was the war between DX and The Nation, and in that feud was the rivalry between HHH and The Rock. HHH mentions they were competing just as hard against each other behind the scenes because each wanted to get to a higher level and it just happened that they used each other to get there.

-They show all the craziness that each company was pulling out in 1998 because of how close the battles were. The WWF was running with the Attitude Era, while WCW was countering with more n.W.o and Goldberg. Roman Reigns talks about how it was great time to be a fan as each show was doing well.

-Back to The Rock and stock footage of Bischoff putting over how charismatic he was. They discuss how the Rock was starting to get the fans behind him and how we outgrew the Nation. We get discussion of how the Rock helped usher in the era of catchphrases and we get some great Rock one liners.

-In WCW Goldberg was on fire and was the hottest act in pro-wrestling. He was the opposite of The Rock as he rarely spoke and instead just smashed anyone that stepped in the ring with him. With Goldberg keeping WCW close the WWF needed find a new foil to Steve Austin.

-In a brilliantly booked tournament to crown a new WWF Champion, the WWF resists the urge to turn Rock face and instead make him the Corporate Champion. It was a genius move by the WWF as they needed a heel on the same level as Austin’s face character and what better person than Rock’s arrogant corporate champion.

-Paul Heyman talks about how the money feud with Rock vs. Austin and there was nothing else the fans wanted to see. The question was who was going to be the antagonist and the choice was easy because the Rock was so great at it. Before getting to that money match though, The Rock needed someone to get him over. When you need to get someone over in impressive fashion you ask one man: Mick Foley.

-They discuss the chemistry the two had with each other, and JR talks about how they genuinely loved work with each other. HHH brings up the Empty Arena Match and damn if that wasn’t one of the more entertaining matches you will see thanks to the Rock’s commentary during the match. The feud worked perfectly as The Rock was primed for his run with Austin.

-Over in WCW they were slipping as they cut the balls off Goldberg and went back to the n.W.o. angle. Rey talks about how a lot of big names didn’t want the younger guys getting to a higher level and thus they were squashed when they got any momentum.

-The WWF was on fire thanks to Rock/Austin and JR calls it arguably the most profitable feud in the company’s history. It would be kind of tough to think of anything else on that level though I would think Andre/Hogan and Hogan/Savage had to do some pretty big money as well.

-Austin and Rock were the two of the biggest stars in history and just happened they were in the same company at the same time when they were both in their prime. Rock calls it arguably the greatest rivalry in the history of the WWF. Reigns talks about how The Rock told him he wanted the top spot and he knew Austin wasn’t ready to give that up yet.

-Talk turns to WrestleMania XV and Jericho mentions that a show headlined by Rock vs. Austin is an easy sell. Hell, they could announce Rock/Austin for Mania this year and damn right I would pay more than $9.99 for that show.

-They gloss over Mania though and focus again on The Rock’s interviews. Thankfully they include the vicious one where he torched Billy Gunn. Too funny! Rock says he was flying by the seat of his pants and he means that in a good way as he was pumped every time he went out to the ring.

-The WWF decided to go to War on Thursday with WCW and introduced SmackDown (in honor of the Rock). JR calls Thunder a joke and how nobody in WCW wanted to work the show and it was a rather easy victory for the WWF. Steph mentions SmackDown was the Rock’s show, and it was just another way for the WWF to show who the #1 company in the world was.

-We move on to The Rock and Sock Connection, and just fantastic stuff here. The Rock puts over Foley’s comedic timing and Foley talks about the free reign they were given. Everything was spontaneous and the peak of that was “This is Your Life.” The segment was the highest rated in the history of RAW, and your damn right it was entertaining. Vince mentions he was kind of pissed that the segment went so long and while he thought it was good, he didn’t think it was that good. Russo talks about how he had to hear it from Vince while the segment was happening and he just let McMahon vent because he knew it was gold. The next day the ratings were in and over 9 million people tuned in for the segment and Vince gave them carte blanche to do what they wanted. Man what Vince would do for 9 million viewers in this day and age.

-As we head towards the end of 1999, Austin was put on the shelf for a year with a neck injury, but the WWF continued to soar thanks to The Rock. He took over for Austin and was the biggest star in the industry in 2000. The ratings dominance over Nitro was becoming laughable, and The Rock started to capture mainstream attention.

-We get footage of The Rock hosting SNL, and he did one hell of a job. Jericho puts over the job he did and Kofi talks about how if you weren’t a wrestling fan you were a fan of The Rock. We get footage of Rock appearing on TRL, and rubbing elbows with celebrities and pro-athletes.

-The Rock then helps get new stars over and they show Angle winning his first WWF Title from the Rock. In a funny spot Billy Gunn makes fun of himself as he talks about how he called a friend and said he was working with the Rock and the friend told him he wasn’t that good, but he just laughed and said “I know, but The Rock is.” Awesome!

-Just to keep this focused as a MNW episode instead of a shortened version of the Rock’s DVD they cut back to WCW and how they were screwing everything up. They continue to focus things on Goldberg as for some reason they want to keep comparing the two of them. Terry Taylor talks about how instead of doing things in best interest of the company guys were doing what was best for them. He also says it grew frustrating trying to get guys to do what they were being paid millions to do.

-In 2001 Austin returned and won the Rumble and we were getting Austin/Rock II, but before that happened WCW was bought out by Vince McMahon. A lot of the credit for winning the War is given to the Rock.

-With the War over The Rock heads off to Hollywood and kicks ass and then we skip to 2011 and the Rock’s return as the Host of WrestleMania. The Rock talks about how he wanted to accomplish things before coming back. Vince also puts over how The Rock had to conquer other things before making his return, and now he will never leave the WWF.

-We wrap things up with everyone talking about the awesomeness of the Rock. Steph calls him the biggest crossover star in the history of the company and Booker thinks Rock will do what he can to try to steal the show at WrestleMania XL. JR says you can only hope to sign more guys like Duane Johnson, but people like him don’t grow on trees. Jericho calls the most charismatic performer in the history of the business, and they discuss how SmackDown is in the dictionary because of The Rock. The man himself says he meant it when he said the WWE is home, and he meant it when he said he will never leave again.

Additional Comments: It is getting to the point where these are starting to feel a lot like a reader’s digest of each guys DVD with some strands tossed it to tie it to the Monday Night War. Don’t get me wrong The Rock is fantastic and always great to see some classic Rock, but I have his DVDs and really not anything new added here. The sad part is they had some stuff to use as WCW tried to push Prince Iaukeau as a sort of Rock when he debuted and even had him feud with Regal (while Rock was battling HHH), and of course in the later days of WCW you had Juventud becoming a Rock impersonator. Hell, they could have discussed Booker using The Rock Bottom and calling it The Book End. Apparently we have 8 more of these to go and again while a fun watch, I do hope things can get focused on the battle between the two companies again.


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Game Spot’s show The Lobby recently sat down with Roman Reigns. They asked Roman various questions from the  WWE all the way to video games. Roman also gave his insight on a variety of other things check out the video above to watch the FULL interview.

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Coming up next, there will be an exclusive interview with Roman Reigns.

-Commercial Break-

Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler, and JBL talk about Roman Reigns’ hernia surgery before throwing it to a highlight video.

Roman Reigns is shown “Live via satellite.” Reigns says he feels great and is getting stronger every single day. Reigns says there is nothing cool about being on the sidelines before saying he wishes he could be in San Antonio. JBL asks what he thought about the Ambrose/Rollins Hell in a Cell match. Reigns says he knew it would be complete carnage. Reigns says he knew Ambrose would bring the fight. That scumbag Seth Rollins is a weasel that hides behind people. Rollins hid behind him and Ambrose and now he’s hiding behind Bray Wyatt. Rollins claims he’s the future of WWE. Reigns says when he’s medically cleared, he’ll make Rollins the past.

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We are back and Michael Cole introduces Roman Reigns ‘Live via Satellite’. Michael asks Roman how is he doing. He says that he is doing better and the doctors are happy with his progression. Roman says that he would rather be in Brooklyn, but he knows that it is a matter of time until he is strapping that vest back on and kicking everybody’s ass. With the right attitude, focus, and positive attitude, that will happen sooner rather than later.

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