Previously on On the Card: Only Championship match of the PPV and it was alright.
Dok Hendrix is backstage with team Stone Cold. Goldust takes responsibility for putting the team together. Ken tells us that the likes to fight. Animal shouts in the mic for a bit and in the middle of his roaring, I hear the words, “US” and “Canada”. Hawk says only one thing, “Whhaaaaaat a rush!” and Stone Cold walks out.
Back in the arena, here to sing the Canadian National Anthem is Farmer’s Daughter. They actually do a fantastic version of it. I know all the words of the Canadian National Anthem. How, you ask? Terrence and Philip’s Asses of Fire (based on a true story).
Ralph Klein is in attendance. He’s a politician or something. Stu and Helen Hart are there too, asking others to stretch ‘em. Shot of the old family there, but Nattie is not amongst them.
Goldust’s music hits and these guys, though faces, will be heels this evening as they are dirty, filthy yanks. The Americans invented anger, you know. Marlena is nowhere to be seen, though. The announcers mention her but I can’t make it out.
Out comes Captain Charisma himself, Ken Shamrock. No theatrics at all. Some smelly marks in the crowd have Shamrock signs.
LOD come out and get a sizable pop. They no-sell everything on the way to the ring. A tank could hit them and they’d just pop up and go to the next spot. Great, great cunts.
Vince tells us to wait for the reaction for the next man. Glass smashes and… nothing. A modest pop. They’re in Canada. They don’t want the rattlesnake. They want the Harts. Canadians and people married to Canadians.
Flyin’ Brian Pillman comes out. He was trained by Stu Hart and is the only member of the Hart Foundation without a blood-or-marriage-relation. Because of that, he is also the only member famous for having a gun as he is not Canuck, but Yank.
Brian stays on the ramp for a bit and takes in the applause. Anvil appears next, standing with Brian and telling the camera that, “this is the real deal.”
Bulldog comes out next with motherfucking Diane Hart-Smith, his emotionless wife. She makes what the humans call a “smile” and waves about her appendages.
Slammy-award-winning Owen Hart is next, looking just fantastic with his two Slammys. We’re all waiting. Who could possibly come out next?
Who? Who, I ask? The crowd know.
His music literally hidden behind the crowd’s cheers, Bret “The Hitman” Hart comes out. What a fucking class tune as well. What a great lad. Lovely mark for himself as well.
With that, the Hart Foundation walk to the ring, waving about the Canadian flag and getting lots of cheap pops from the crowd. Bret gives his shades to his mum. She’s dead pleased. Stu could not give less of a fuck. Bret squares up to the enemy, the Yank. Stone Cold jaws off to Bret for a bit. There are cameras by ringside, filming a documentary about Bretty Bret Hart. Everyone clears the ring except for Stone Cold and Bret. The bell tolls.
Goldust, Ken Shamrock, The Legion of Doom (Hawk and Animal) and Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. The Hart Foundation (Brian Pillman, Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart, The British Bulldog, Owen Hart and Bret Hart) (with Diane Hart-Smith).
Stone Cold and Bret pummel the shite out of each other and Bret takes over, getting Austin in the corner, stomping a mudhole in him and walking it dry. Stone Cold hits back and the crowd boo, pissed as Austin tosses Bret into the corner and cheering as the Hitman springs out to knock Austin down. Bret drags Austin’s face on the ropes and Austin low blows Bret. It’s his turn to stomp a hole into Hitman. The two jaw off as Austin gets the sleeper hold on Bret. Hitman kicks off the turnbuckle and has another chat. Anvil is tagged in and it’s his turn to beat on Austin. Stone Cold gets the Lou Thesz press and tags in Shamrock. Big boos.
Shamrock and Anvil square off. Big kick from Shamrock and Anvil goes down. Ankle lock and Pillman springs in. Shamrock takes Anvil down with an arm-drag. Anvil returns with a punch to the bake and Shamrock gets the armlock in.
Pillman is tagged in and takes an arm drag from Shamrock. It’s yank against yank mid-ring. Pillman chops Shamrock in the corner and gives Shamrock a lovely backbreaker. He straddles Shamrock and slaps him. An Irish whip to the corner becomes a clothesline and Ken gets the belly-to-belly in.
Owen is tagged in, all short-haired and handsome. Goldust comes into face him and a lovely back body drop form Goldust becomes a big old dropkick from Owen. Goldust gets Owen in the corner and the crowd chant something.
Hawk pops in and beats on Owen for a while. He goes top-rope and hits a terrible-looking splash. He attempts a dropkick, fails, Owen tries to hit the Sharpshooter but is broken up.
Bulldog comes in with a delayed suplex (what strength!) followed by a lovely powerslam. Referee Earl Hebner allows Goldust to break up the pin and our man Bret comes in. Animal and Bret in the ring with the LOD lad failing to sell any offence. On account of the cuntyness.
Goldust comes in, has a wee squat mid-ring and the pair have a test of strength. Bret puts Goldie in a tree of woe and the Hart Foundation beat on him. The crowd actually cheer! Shower of bastards! Owen is in, hitting another backbreaker and tosses Goldie into the turnbuckle, but is denied a shoulder barge. Animal comes in, actually sells a spinning heel kick and dropkick from the top rope. Owen kips up and is fired up. He gives Owen a lovely pop-up-powerbomb and bodyslam. He goes for the super dangerous Doomsday Device and Owen lands on his neck. Christ, lads, just fall with him, come on.
The pin attempt is broken by the Anvil and there’s a schmoz. In the middle of it, Austin beats on Owen and hits him with a chair. Stu attacks him and Bret soon follows. Owen is hurt, apparently, and Anvil pops in as Owen is carried out by the rest of the Harts. Anvil lifts Austin up and the Harts beat on him in the corner. Austin fights back and beats off the Harts before pulling Brian in, exposing his arse and hitting the Stunner.
Bret grabs Austin’s legs and cracks them off of the turnbuckle, following it up with a fire extinguisher and a figure four off the turnbuckle. One of the LOD breaks it up and Bulldog stomps Austin. Apparently, he’s legal. Bulldog and Hawk fight mid-ring and Hawk falls off the turnbuckle onto his balls. Anvil tags in and he and Bulldog double-clothesline Hawk. Austin is leaving the arena. Animal is in now, versus Anvil. Earl watches as both men are gassed and doing a test of strength.
Jim gets Animal into the corner and tags in Hitman, who gives him a Bret’s Rope elbow onto a backbroken Animal. Shamrock is tagged in and gets a wee ankle lock on before Flyin’ Brian Pillman breaks it up. Wee low blow to Shamrock and Hitman goes into the corner. Big punches from our man Shamrock. Another ankle lock attempt but Shamrock lets go to allow Bret up. Bret takes over, throws Shamrock into Brian’s boot and tosses Shamrock out. Pillman throws Ken into the announcer’s table and another schmoz ensues. Hawk is tossed into the steel steps.
Mid-ring, Bret hits the Russian Leg Sweep on Bret and a pin is denied by Goldust. Bulldog pops in, stomping a mudhole in Ken and flipping him the bird. Low blow stops that. Goldust is in, then, beating the shite out of Shamrock and hitting a bulldog to Bulldog. Pillman breaks up the Curtain Call and Goldie goes to the top rope, falls on his balls, gets a lovely superplex from the top-rope (a rare both-men-on-top-rope superplex) and Stone Cold reappers. He reaches for the tag off of Goldie and Bulldog tags in Bret. Both men batter seven shades of shite out of another as Stone Cold hits a lovely supplex. Bret reverses a back-body-drop and hits the backbreaker.
Bret hits his Bret’s rope elbow and is caught in a sleeper hold that he counters into a stunner but Bret actually kicks out! He actually kicks out! Bret hits the Sharpshooter but Cunt Animal breaks it up because he doesn’t understand wrestling. Austin hits the Sharpshooter but Owen pops in to break it up because he does understand wrestling. Owen is tagged in and eats a boot from Austin. Both ben roll out and Austin beats on Owen for a bit before turning on Stu and pummelling him. No DQ from the ref and big boos from the crown. Owen gets the roll-up and the win.
Owen Hart has pinned Stone Cold Steve Austin. The Hart Foundation win in 24:31.
Good main event. The weaker ones are held back and the talented guys get top-billing. Shame about Cunt LOD and Austin and Owen being the finishers despite the fact that both men left the ring due to injury. Stinks of Hogan.
That wacky Stone Cold!
Everyone else has a big old schmoz as the bell rings constantly. The refs and ringside harts get involved and soon the ring is filled with young bucks. The ring swells and ebbs and flows with people as the heels attempt to leave. The crowd are cheering as the Yanks leave. The Harts celebrate mid-ring with Bret’s music playing despite the fact that Owen got the pin. Lots of Canadian showboating and hotdogging from the faces. Anvil waves a flag. Owen looks pissed, actually pissed.
Austin is back in and is jumped upon by the Harts. It’s a massive pile-on. The crowd chant, “Austin sucks!” at him, and in this situation, he does. Bret goes to his rope to observe the situation. Austin is handcuffed by security and fights back, booting at his oppressors. Boots are laid into his face as he is led off, waving his arse at the Canadian crowd, flipping them the bird. Cheeky yoke.
Bret’s music plays again and Stu and Helen are brought up to the ring to celebrate with his family. Jerry can’t get over how many Harts exist.
The Go Home Stats.
Man of the Matches: I was going to say Mankind and Trips, but they outstayed their welcome by continually fighting so I’m going for Taka Michinoku for being… EVIL.
Woman of the Matches: Chyna? Is she the only one? Unless you count Diana and Helen Hart, I suppose. Just Chyna, so.
Montel Vontavious Porter Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Excellence: Taka Michinoku.
Best Spot: There were, actually, no real stand-out spots other than the entire light heavyweight match.
Hatches: Brian Pillman makes his first in-ring appearance. Taka Michinoku and The Great Sasuke appear as well.
Matches: Undertaker retains his WWF World Heavyweight Championship.
Dispatches: Blackjack Mulligan and Bradshaw who fought in the Free For All match, are (thankfully, in Bradshaw’s case) gone until Survivor Series. This is The Great Sasuke’s only PPV appearance, so he’s gone. Taka is gone until D-Generation X in December. Anvil is gone until Survivor Series. Pauly B is gone until Badd Blood.
Closing Statements: Dave Meltzer placed this as the Best Major Wrestling Show in 1997 and it’s hard to dispute that. The crowd were hot, the matches were great, the pace was high and other than the Trips/Mankind brawl that kept recurring, everything was great. Only four matches in two hours, though, each of them being at least ten minutes and one of them going for almost a full half an hour. Great, great, great PPV.
On the Card will return on August 3 2017 with Summerslam 1997.