World Wrestling Entertainmentflagship program, Monday Night Raw has been on television for over 27 years and no show can be consistent for that long. This is especially true in wrestling, where the shifts and the people running the show behind the scenes can change over time. As a result, a few years of Raw they were amazing, a must watch on television, while others found themselves in the realm of “avoid at all costs”.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at five of the best years in Raw history and five years that produced the least fun and unwatchable pro wrestling television.
10 Best: 1997
WWF’s Attitude Era began in 1997 and, consequently, the Monday Night RawThe s of the year were extremely good. 1997 gave fans the first WWF Championship title change on television, the formation of DX generation, and many Stone Cold Steve Austin hijinx including the time he threw The Rock title belt into a river.
This year also featured many Shawn Michaels dramas, including the “Lost my smile” promo and the Montreal Screwjob fallout.
9 Worst: 1995
The first year of Raw (1993) is extremely unexceptional as WWF was coming out of its golden age thanks to a steroid scandal that tarnished Hulk Hogan’s reputation, but at least he has that awesome match between Mr. Perfect and Ric Flair amidst constant squash of workers.
1995 is actually a much weaker year, with Diesel struggling to be the best WWF champion and introducing dead-in-the-water gimmicks like Isaac Yankem, DDS
8 Best: 1998
With the Attitude era in full swing, 1998 saw Monday Night Raw go really hard in the Monday night wars, while D-Generation X has infamously “invaded” Monday Nitro this year and Steve Austin was crucified by Undertaker on national television.
Speaking of Stone Cold, 1998 is the year fans associate the most with the Era, as there have been so many iconic moments of the feud between Austin and Vince McMahon Raw in this period of time, including the hospital attack and the Zamboni attack.
7 Worst: 2003
The Raw/smack down the division of the brand took place in 2002, with smack down reaching a creative peak in 2002 and 2003. Meanwhile, it was 2003 Raw was reaching one of its many nadirs thanks to what fans call Triple H’s “reign of terror”.
It was at this time that Trips took the world heavyweight title for most of the year and managed to bury everyone he competed with – the most infamous, Booker T.
6 Best: 2000
Many WWE fans regard 2000 as one of the best years of WWE, even better than some of the other Attitude Era years mentioned above. At this point, WWE had done it Kurt Angle, Chris Jericho, The Radicalz, The Dudleys, Edge and Christian, and others in addition to the other strengths of Attitude Era.
With Stone Cold gone for most of the year, The Rock was able to become the company’s babyface top while Triple H was becoming the heeled top.
5 Worst: 2009
The year 2009 for Raw era rough, as WWE has apparently valued celebrity status over pro wrestling. As a result, there was a minimum of wrestling on the schedule, but a weekly parade of famous guests that drew criticism from many fans.
The most memorable thing of 2009 is probably the increasingly embarrassing thing D-Generation X skits with Hornswoggle, but they’re not exactly memorable in a good way.
4 Best: 2011
CM PunkThe infamous pipe-bomb promo has happened Raw in 2011 and is easily one of the most memorable things that happened on WWE television in the 2010s. It was surprising enough to grab mainstream media attention and blur the lines of fiction enough to make wrestling fans believe it was real.
Outside of CM Punk, 2011 also had Edgethe tragic retirement, the return of The Rock and the controversial defeat of Rey Mysterio Jr. at the hands of the selfish opportunist John Cena.
3 Worst: 2012
It is easy to forget Monday Night Raw it wasn’t always a three-hour slog, as it was originally an hour before becoming a two-hour affair. In 2012, Raw officially expanded in three hours, and the show really suffered.
Highlights of 2012 include the awkward romance between AJ Lee and John Cena, WWE’s relentless promotion of the failed social media platform Tout, and Jerry Lawler’s real-life on-screen heart attack.
2 Best: 2014
2013 had some strong moments, with the formation of the Authorities and their feud with the Rhodes Brothers, but Raw in 2014 saw the YES! Movement in full force as fan excitement propelled Daniel Bryan to the top of the chart WrestleMania XXX paper despite the company’s original plans.
Not only was she the official face of The Shield this year, but she also had their shocking breakup when Seth Rollins betrayed the trio.
1 Worst: 2018
Monday Night Raw in 2018 it was pretty sad. Brock Lesnar was Universal Champion, but barely on the show, WWE was trying too hard Ronda Rousey They look cool at everyone else’s expense, and there was too much Baron Corbin on television.
Featured as Dean AmbroseThe shocking heel kick turned into him telling the crowd how much they stank and, by the end of the year, Raw ended up scoring some of his lowest ratings of all time.
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