Monday Night Raw | October 22, 2001
Kemper Arena – Kansas City, Missouri | TV Rating: 3.9
The Good – Rhyno Shines
The US Title match between Rhyno and Kurt Angle is very good, almost PPV quality. It goes 12 minutes and gives us a clean finish. It’s not rocket science is it?
The main event between The Rock/Chris Jericho and the Dudley’s isn’t that good and treats the tag team titles as secondary to the ongoing hostilities between Rock and Jericho but unlike most things tonight it does feel as if it is at least TRYING to achieve something. Even if we’re long since sick of the “odd couple, will they/won’t they get along” tag team trope.
The match is bad enough but the fact that Vince McMahon once again “punishes” a wrestler (in this case Rob Van Dam) by making them fight The Big Show is beyond laughable at this point. Rhyno didn’t really make it past this show as a star, mostly forgotten and just becomes a “hardcore” guy. Shame.
There wasn’t much good work done at No Mercy but Test defeating Kane might have been one bit. On paper at least. So of course here tonight Kane & The Undertaker take on Test & Booker T and Kane pins Test. The match was the pits too.
We’re in the dying throes of the “Invasion” and I guess bringing it to a head is for the best. But an opening promo where Vince is reunited with Linda, retrospectively explains his absence by saying he has been in therapy and this is interrupted by his kids who challenge him to a “winner takes all” Survivor Series without really explaining what that actually means isn’t all that great. And in an era of McMahon overkill seeing all four verbally go at it again is just boring now.
It’s far from good but at least Lita & Trish against Mighty Molly & Ivory is an actual match rather than being built around lingerie or whatever. And then ten minutes later Matt Hardy nearly sneaks a peak at a semi-naked Trish. I mean say what you want about how some women are booked in 2021 WWE but it used to be a LOT worse.
Billy Kidman and Tajiri have the usual WWE Cruiserweight five minute TV match that is decent but isn’t over. Hurricane and Bradshaw is exactly what you expect. The WCW guy is squashed by the big bad WWE guy who got sparked out by Joey Styles.
Four title changes in one show at least ensures that you can’t say nothing happens on this show. But then nothing of any real importance does happen in that sense. We’re on the Road to Survivor Series but there is no real jeopardy as WCW/ECW have been portrayed as weaklings almost since Day 1. One great match, Thanks Rhyno, and a couple of decent efforts do at least make this a show that is very easy to watch.