Attitude Era #11. In Your House 14: Revenge of the ‘Taker (April 20, 1997) Part 3

Previously on On the Card: Brilliant Taker and Mankind match.

Cut to a promo for Undertaker… and Stone Cold? Oh, it’s a promo for the next In Your House.

Dok Hendrix is speaking to Bret. Bret is very Canadian. In the background, Owen and Bulldog stand. You can hear Paul yelping in the background. Bret cuts a heel promo, total anti-American and his music hits. Bret appears from the In Your House house with the rest of the Hart Foundation but Irish Referee Tim White stops them heading to the ring. Monsoon appears and tells them all to fuck off and they do.

Glass smashes and out comes the meanest son of a bitch you’ve ever seen. JR tells us that he is not a role model.

Number One Contender match for the WWE Championship: Bret “The Hitman” Hart vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin.

Austin slides into the ring and whips the face off Bret for a while. JR says, “Bret can outwrestle Austin, but Bret can’t outfight Stone Cold.” Would have been better if he had used “Hitman” in there. Lovely punches, running of the ropes, suplex and chokes. They brawl to the outside where Stone Cold throws Bret into the steel steps twice. Austin goes into the ring and does the Bret-raise-the-roof taunt. Bret goes for a stroll and Austin bounces his head off the barricades. Earl Hebner shouts at him and Austin gives Bret an axe-handle-nothing from the railing! Very nice!

Austin hits a Bret’s rope elbow with theatrics (the middle finger). Bret escapes a pin and Stone Cold follows him. Chairs go flying and Monsoon is chastising him. Stone Cold takes the chair from Bret and there’s a ref bump – AGAIN – that Bret takes advantage of by hammering Stone Cold’s knee with the chair. Bret gets Earl up and hits Austin for a while.

Brian Pillman and Sunny have just interviewed Mankind on the Superstar Line, by Christ.

Stone Cold fights back and gets knocked down. Bret hits a figure four on the ring post and hits Austin’s knee with a chair. He’s a real bastard, isn’t he? JR says hello to the fans in the UK and Jerry says hello specifically to Princess Diana.

Bret and Austin wrassle on the ground as a cut shows Paul on a stretcher, in a lot of pain, moaning about his face. Austin’s brace has been removed by Bret and gets stomped. Austin is not in a good way. This looks legit painful. Earl roars at the two men to get back into the ring and Austin punches Bret in the dick. Big old Bionic Elbow. Stone Cold gets some tape and chokes Bret. Bret’s rope elbow but Bret moves out of the way and takes over, stomping Austin’s leg. Austin fights back, attempts to suplex Austin out of the ring but Bret retaliates. Bret hits the figure four mid-ring and both men have a lovely lie down. Every time Austin falls back, the ref hits the pin. Austin finally turns Bret over and his instantly finds the rope. I don’t understand the figure four reversal.

Bret hits Austin once again and attempts the figure four on the steel ring ropes. Stone Cold tosses Hart into the crowd and beats on him with his left elbow. Bret is strong back in to the ring mat and bounced off the guardrail. Stone Cold hits the clothesline from the apron. Austin cracks Bret with the Irish whip and hammers his head with fists and the loosest pin in history. Bret gets a boot in the stomach and Austin attempts the piledriver but his leg buckles. Lovely storytelling. Bret attempts the Irish whip but topples when running.

Vince wonders why Bret isn’t just hitting the Sharpshooter to finish Austin. Austin flapjacks Bret onto the turnbuckle and attempts the stunner after a pin but Bret grabs the ropes. Bret brings Austin over to the corner for a great superplex. Bret attempts the Sharpshooter and Austin nails Bret with his own leg brace. Austin hits a Sharpshooter of his own and Bulldog and Owen Hart come to Bret’s aid. Stone Cold knocks them back is Irish Referee Tim White chases them away. Second Sharpshooter from Austin. Gorilla Monsoon has a wee walk in the background and Davey Boy comes in to hit Stone Cold with a chair.

The British Bulldog has hit Stone Cold Steve Austin with a steel chair, causing outside interference and awarding the match to Stone Cold in 21:09.

2017 comments:

Lovely match, very good storytelling and great selling ruined by a shit finish.

1997 comments:

I hate the British.

Grade: A.

The Fink announces that Stone Cold wins and Bret stalks the place in a big old fit. He gets the ring bell, goes to hit Austin but Stone Cold retaliates with a chair and hits the Sharpshooter once again. Referees enter the ring. Owen and Bulldog run out. All hell breaks loose. Both men are hurt – “Casulties of war!” as JR says. Fans give Bret the finger. Stone Cold’s music plays as he hits the corners of the ring, raises his hands and jaws off to the crowd before leaving.

The Go Home Stats.

Man of the Matches: I would love to nominated Stone Cold Steve Austin and Bret Hart once again. Brilliant match

Woman of the Matches: No women were here tonight, other than Sable and fuck her.

Montel Vontavious Porter Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Excellence: Bret Hart

Best Spot: Stone Cold hitting the Sharpshooter on Bret.

Hatches: None.

Matches: Owen Hart and The British Bulldog retain the WWF Tag Team Championship amidst dodgy finishes; Rocky Maivia also technically lost the match but retained the WWF Intercontinental Championship due to a countout; Undertaker retained his WWF Championship; Stone Cold Steve Austin became the number one contender for said championship.

Dispatches: No real dispatches. Billy Gunn and Jesse James are out until Survivor Series 97 when they make their PPV return as the New Age Outlaws. Bret disappears until they return to Canada in In Your House 16: Canadian Stampede. Honky returns at the 1998 Royal Rumble.

Closing Statements: It was an okay PPV that had one half of a terrific tag team match and two long-ass singles matches with four of the greatest wrestlers on God’s green Earth.

On the Card will return on May 11 2017 with In Your House 15: A Cold Day in Hell.

 

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Attitude Era #11. In Your House 14: Revenge of the ‘Taker (April 20, 1997) Part 2

Previously on On the Card: Weird Rock match.

Weird cut (must be my DVD) to Sable and Marvellous Wildman Marc Mero. Sable has won a Slammy and mutters her way through a promo. Dok Hendrix asks Mero about his Golden Gloves history as Stone Cold causes hell behind him. It’s very funny. Bulldog and Owen leave with what seems like a golf club. Weird.

Vince can’t seem to understand. He says that it’s a “wild and crazy night”.

Jesus Christ. Jesse James rocks down to the ring, singing a country song. Some mark in the crowd sings away. Jeff Jarrett says he sings that song.

Out comes the Honky Tonk Man. Fuck this guy. The crowd loves him though. Jerry goes crazy because they’re cousins. He sings away. Shit.

Honky gets the mic and cuts a great promo. He threatens to bring out a protégé and screws up the intro as Rockabilly – fucking Billy Gunn – comes out. JR disappears to talk to Honky. Two weeks ago, Billy Gunn got punched by Billy and Honky took him on anyways because he’s an idiot.

Jesse James vs. Rockabilly (with The Honky Tonk Man).

Nice to see Road Dogg and Mr. Ass before it all went south.

Billy hits Jesse and does a dance. Christ. This is going to be hard to watch. Lovely hip toss where Billy jumps very high and yelps, “Oh Jesus!” as he goes over. James jumps off the apron, hammers Billy with a great shot. He threatens Honky, who says, “You’re a goof!” Billy asks for a time out and gets a cheap shot in. Lovely Famasser from Billy when Jesse telegraphs a back body drop. Billy points at his arse, foreshadowing his later moniker.

They talk about Stone Cold getting attacked earlier and apparently Austin is “shaken up”. Bollocks. Lovely neckbreaker and pin attempt. Irish Referee Tim White shrugs. Apparently in the Superstar Room, where viewers can ring in to chat to stars, Sunny and Brian Pillman are asking some personal questions. Billy does a dance, big jump, misses Jesse and faceplants. Both men are down but crawl around until Jesse hits the punches, knocks the fuck out of Billy, goes for the ten punch, gets a whole ten, goes some dances and runs the rope before being tossed out of the ring. Rockabilly falls out of the ring and rolls him in, does a dance and sets up for what seems to be… a superplex? There’s a quick roll-up and Jesse gets the pin.

Jesse James has pinned Rockabilly in 6:46.

2017 comments:

Moments of greatness interspaced with shite.

1997 comments:

These two are relics.

Grade: C.

Honky goes to hit Jesse with the guitar and misses.

Backstage, Kevin Kelly is chatting to Austin. He denies medical attention – and has no injuries to show – and screams. Gorilla Monsoon is hanging about. He says that no one knows who is hurt more than Steve Austin – other than a doctor, apparently – and has moved about the card to ensure that Austin can have more time to heal.

The lad Lance in the Hart locker room repeats everything just said. Bulldog and Owen talk some nonsense about Stone Cold poking his nose into people’s business.

Back by the arena, Vince introduces the next match with a promo showing wrestlers looking scared. Lovely stock sound effects in a modulator, all reversed and twisted. The line, “The deranged battlefield of the mind,” is used amidst children crying. It’s real hammy shit. Paul Bearer is there, too. We see the Paul-in-a-cage match, the Boiler Room Brawl and replays of Mankind using flash paper to get some fire in Taker’s eyes. Lots of use of “blind” and “vision”

Backstage, balding Mankind and screechy Paul cut a promo with Kevin Kelly.

Smoke crawls from the In Your House house as Mankind rocks in with Paul Bearer. He has… a fire extinguisher with him. Brilliant. The sound on my DVD gets a little warped then, like they left the modulator on.

The lights flicker and the crowd goes apeshit as the bells go to announce ‘Taker arriving with some Revenge. He rocks in with some crazy armour on like Viggo the Carpathian. He tosses something into the ring (might be the belt) and attacks Mankind to start the match.

WWE Championship Match: The Undertaker (c) vs. Mankind (with Paul Bearer).

Lots of spooooky smoke in the ring there.

Taker hammers on Mankind in the corner for a while, his hair covering his eye due to the injury. Taker was supposed to be a Deadman, though, impervious to pain. Taker does his Michael Myers sit up and Mankind runs at him. Both men fall out of the ring and land on their feet. Taker ruthlessly throws Mankind into the railings, lifts him and tosses him into the crowd. Undertaker throws him right back onto the mat and rolls in and out of the ring to break the count before hammering Mick’s head off the railings.

Undertaker throws Mankind back into the ring and beats him on the ropes. JR rhymes off a bunch of facts for Mankind’s injuries – the best day of his life was when he lost an ear, one leg is longer than the other due to injury. Taker goes for Old School and continues to beat on the mental man. Paul runs onto the apron and as Taker grabs him, Mankind bonks him on the noggin with the urn. Mankind yanks his hair out like the big psycho he is. It’s Mankind’s turn to take over. Jerry and JR talk about Vader for a bit. Jerry sings Vader’s theme. Mankind hits the spinning neckbreaker, attempts a pin and fails. Paul Bearer is very angry about it.

Mick hits the Vulcan Nerve Grip. Rest hold city.

The crowd chant, “Rest in peace!” as Taker fights back, punching Mankind out of the ring. Taker gets dragged out and the two men have a chat before Mankind gets his head thrown into the steel steps. He retaliates by hitting Undertaker with a pitcher of water. Vince questions how it isn’t a DQ. Mankind gets a chair and hits Taker in the head. No DQ so far. Big Texas Red is getting his head kicked in. Mankind goes to Bret’s rope and hits Undertaker with an elbow to the outside. He boots Taker in the head when he stands up. Close up of Undertaker and his made-up eye.

Big old piledriver in the centre of the ring from Mankind. Taker fights back but gets another piledriver. Mankind squeals like a pig, boy! He follows Taker about, punching him every step of the way until Undertaker eventually retaliates. Lovely running of the ropes and jumping clothesline to allow Taker to fight back. Taker turns on the ref and there is a predictable ref bump. Mankind hits the Mandible Claw and a second ref arrives before being tossed out. Paul throws in a chair and Mankind leaves to get the steel steps. As Mankind lifts them mid-ring, Taker sits up, boots the steps – and Mankind – lifts the chair and cracks Mankind with it. Jerry cannot hide his genuine horror.

Mankind is thrown out, gets his head caught in a hangman, the very thing that lost him an ear. In escaping, the mask goes flying and Undertaker tosses him off the apron  through a table. Undertaker hits a chokeslam and gets the one, two and Mankind kicks out. Great.

Taker slits his throat, hits the Tombstone Piledriver and gets the three.

The Undertaker has pinned Mankind in 17:26.

2017 comments:

Brilliantly brutal.

1997 comments:

Well, Mankind is dead, I guess.

Grade: A.

“It’s a good thing Paul Bearer is wearing a dark suit,” is said as Taker drags him into the ring and there’s a Botchy McBotchface between all three men. Taker has something in his hand, it seems like… yes! It’s flashpaper! He hits Paul with it. The announcers let on it’s some sort of magic or something. Vince considers whether or not it was called for. Oh, now is not the time to get all moral. The music hits and…

On the Card will return on May 4 2017 with the third and final part of In Your House 14: Revenge of the ‘Taker.

Attitude Era #11. In Your House 14: Revenge of the ‘Taker (April 20, 1997) Part 1

On the Card: Attitude Era #11 In Your House 14: Revenge of the ‘Taker – April 20, 1997

In the previous entry, I looked at WrestleMania 13. It was the WrestleManiaiest WrestleMania. The next PPV was In Your House, the fourteenth of its name and its subtitle was Revenge of the ‘Taker. Yeah, not Undertaker… ‘Taker. Oh, old Vince would have gone bananas over young Vince for that.

Over the next few weeks, I will review this PPV from the perspectives of a fan looking back at it after two decades as well as my original thoughts as a teenager watching it at the time (though this particular PPV was one I watched in 1998 as my family did not have the channels necessary to watch wrasslin’).

WWF In Your House 14: Revenge of the ‘Taker 1997

Ain’t no tagline here.

Lovely grey intro to show Mankind burning Taker with some lovely flash paper cut with Mankind screeching crazy stuff. Cut to the Undertaker’s Entrance and Big Texas Red’s voice as he reads from a piece of paper to tell him that he has a wicked rage. Lightning strikes! Pyro hits and the ring erupts as we are welcomed to Rochester Community War Memorial in Rochester, New York. What a place to have a wrestling PPV. Vince screams himself half to death… as a mariachi band plays. No time to introduce the announcers – Vince McMahon, Jumpin’ Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler – as “rrrrrrrrrwhattaraaaaash!” and the motherfucking Legion of Doom rock out – Hawk and Animal – and the crowd go ballistic. Some smelly mark in the crowd is wearing the LOD armour. The grainy footage, awesome music and huge men make this especially terrifying. Christ, I remember watching this and thinking that these men were genuine monsters who lived in the Badlands.

Cut to two weeks ago at RAW where those gosh darned Godwinns throw their slop at Owen and Bulldog, but the pair duck and LOD get splashed! Oh, the humanity! LOD beat seven shades out of them for it, but then take a loss a week later due to Owen bopping one of them with the belt! The rascals.

Finally we see our announce team. They all look lovely. JR is shouting as fast as he can to get all the lines out as quickly as possible. There are 6,477 souls in attendance with a buyrate at home of 176,250. Vince calls LOD “pumped and jacked.”

Speaking of jacked, out comes Bulldog and two-time Slammy-Award-Winning Owen Hart.

(Note: Before the PPV began there was a match on Free-For-All featuring Flash Funk and his two Funkettes: Tracy and Nadine being soundly beaten by The Sultan (Rikishi).)

JR tells us that LOD need to win early because the longer a match goes on, the more chance that the agile gentlemen will win.

Tag Team Match for the WWF Tag Team Championship: Owen Hart and the British Bulldog (c) vs. The Legion of Doom (Hawk and Animal).

I’ve changed up the titles: order of entrance or champions first if it’s a title match. I like that the challengers come out first though. That’s very respectful.

I love how LOD are still introduced as Road Warrior Animal and Road Warrior Hawk. It’s nice.

Animal and Owen start off together. Animal beats seven shades out of Owen, even jumping in the air to shoulder barge him. The pair lock up and Owen stomp-punches Animal, applying a facelock and taking a lovely lift for it. Bulldog tags in, tassles and all. Hawk is tagged in and after a great dropkick, a pin attempt. Lovely pace here, really nice to watch. Hawk gives Bulldog a shoulder barge, Owen the ”shove it up ye” sign and Bulldog takes over after a telegraphed back body drop and stalling suplex. Owen is in and tries to hit the Sharpshooter as newly-faced JR talks about America and how great it is. Animal is tagged in and hits a fantastic snap powerslam. Beautiful.

Side-by-side shot of Stone Cold turning up as Animal hits a lovely gorilla press. Animal asks for a tag without even looking and Hawk gives a great splash from the top rope. Hawk is thrown into the corner and as he hits it, bumps into Owen who sells like death. The crowd are going ballistic. Bulldog tags in and stands over Hawk, stomping him. JR says some heelish things. Bulldog knocks Hawk to the ground, who is building to a hot tag. Owen hits the sleeper hold and Hawk passes out almost immediately. JR and Jerry have a wee back-and-forth. Bulldog lifts Hawk, who escapes it and tags in Animal for a fantastic super powerslam and the win.

Animal has pinned The British Bulldog to win the WWF Tag Team Championship in… 10:11?

I think my DVD skipped something because the timing was closer to seven minutes than ten. Maybe there were some rest holds they cut out. I’ve heard of them shortening DVDs before so this may be true.

Oh wait, a second referee turns up and announces that the pinfall does not count as Bulldog was not the legal man and so the match must continue and if Bulldog and Owen don’t go back to the ring by ten, they will lose the belts (an illegal action as belts cannot change on a countout regardless of whether illegal wrestlers were pinned or not). The crowd begin to count to ten. Bulldog and Owen rush in. Owen actually throws Hawk out. Owen tags in and knocks down Animal. The announcers give off about the inconsistencies. Brilliant. The crowd bay for LOD.

Owen distracts the ref as there is a sunset flip behind him. Vince calls Bulldog and Owen hooligans. We see the alleged illegal move that sends Owen out. Hawk is in, kicking seven shades of shite out of the boys. Dangerous-looking Doomsday Device where Owen damn near lands on his neck. There’s a pin and the ref stalls just in time for Bret Hart to pop in and cost LOD the tag titles.

Bret Hart has interfered with the match, meaning that The Legion of Doom win by disqualification. However, Owen Hart and The British Bulldog are still WWF Tag Team Champions in 10:11.

2017 comments:

That flew by. That was one of the best matches I have seen in this blog, by Christ. LOD destroyed Bulldog and Owen. Great pace, great high impact. Everyone looked fantastic. The only thing is the LOD are awful at selling and it would have been nice to see Owen and Bulldog maybe get close to winning a few times, two-counts, that sort of thing. First “match” was amazing, but the reset lost momentum, energy and wasn’t fun to watch, which was a shame.

1997 comments:

Who are these glorious men?

Grade: A.

Real shame. LOD were super over and should have won. They clean house as the crowd call the Hart Foundation all the cunts of the day. Both Hawk and Animal stand mid-ring, looking pissed off. The ref runs off from Hawk and Animal, who look legit pissed.

Backstage, Dok Hendrix says that Owen and Bulldog are lucky to win. Owen reacts amazingly when Hendrix tells him Stone Cold has arrived.

Back in the arena, a bunch of white boys raise their fists as Savio Vega and Crush saunter to the ring with JC Ice and Wolfie D. The Nation of Domination stand mid-ring, an absolutely great bunch of lads. By any means necessary. We see a replay of Savio pulling on Rock’s tights.

Backstage, my boy KK Kevin Kelly speaks to The Rock, who hammers through his promo with the same speed that JR rocks through his lines. Where is the charismatic Rock, you say? He’s about half a year away. Chill.

He pops down to the ring, doing his Rock walk despite still being Rocky Maivia. Though he speaks not like The Rock, he moves like him and jumps into the ring with his belt still on! The psycho!

Match for the WWF Intercontinental Championship: Rocky Maivia (c) vs. Savio Vega (with Crush and the Nation of Domination).

Savio is knocked down instantly and Rocky pops the belt off, giving a lovely hip toss before Faarooq appears with his injured shoulder. Rocky does a lovely jump and two more hip tosses. Faarooq sits beside the announcers and due to microphone issues, we can’t hear him. JR gives him his own mic and Faarooq gives off about it. It turns out Faarooq has challenged Ahmed Johnson to a match against all the members of the NOD. In the ring, nothing happens. The crowd cheer for Rocky and he hits a lovely crossbody. Faarooq tells us that if Ahmed can defeat the NOD, then the Nation will be disbanded. Vince says there’s no way that Ahmed can defeat Savio Vega, Crush and Faarooq on the same night.

Faarooq has a great line – “It’s like we’re married, me and Ahmed – ‘til death do us part!” This is followed by a lot of death talk.

Vulcan nerve pinch mid-ring on Rocky. Rock hits a great bridging suplex but the ref is distracted – second time this night – and the pin is broken. Savio chops Rocky in the corner, getting big “woo!”s from the crowd. A pin attempt. A fail. Jerry says that Ahmed is hooked on ebonics. Rock hits a lovely spinning DDT – “a classic manoeuvre!” from Vince – and a pin attempt but fails. Roll up, pull of the pants and Savio attempts a shoulder barge but fails. Rock hits a fantastic backdrop-to-kip-up combo. Another pin attempt. Rock hits a lovely Rock Bottom and backslide. Crush stands on the hard cam like a goon and Rock is thrown into him. Crush hits the heart punch when the ref’s back is turned and the official begins a countout.

Rocky Maivia has been counted out, meaning that Savio Vega wins by countout. However, Rocky Maivia is still WWF Intercontinental Champion in 8:33.

2017 comments:

It was a storyline match where the action failed when Faarooq was cutting his promo. Not very good despite both men being amazing.

1997 comments:

Ohhhh. Tag team dissention?

Grade: C.

Two matches, two screwy finishes and two ref distractions. Not good.

Savio gives off to Crush, who walks into the ring. The crowd go bananas as Faarooq and Immigration Clarence Mason and the rest of the Nation head in. The men decide to just beat on Rocky instead. JR calls them a pack of dogs. Out comes Ahmed with a 2×4, shouting nonsense and taking off his top. The rascal. You can’t take him anywhere. Rocky gets to his feet. Ahmed calls Savio an illegal immigrant, Crush a convict and Faarooq, a black ass. He takes the challenge to fight all of NOD in one night. Rock is gone, the camera is on Ahmed. This was never a Rocky match, this was not about the Intercontinental champion, it was about NOD and Ahmed. Rock hugs Ahmed.

On the Card will return on April 27 2017 with the second part of In Your House 14: Revenge of the ‘Taker.

ATTITUDE ERA #8: WRESTLEMANIA 13 (Mar 23, 1997) PART 4

Previously on On the Card: Best WrestleMania match followed by basically every midcard Mania match ever.

Another ad for In Your House 14. April 20th. Blaze it.

Another shill for Sky Sports and a lovely shot of Vlad and Faith No More Guy wearing a BWO t-shirt.

Oh Shawn! The sexy boy returns to shake hands with all the kids. He’s a great lad. A great, drug fuelled lad. The audience won’t let go of him. Potential riot erupting here. Shawn pops into the ring… no, he won’t, he goes around to the announcers, clearly winged off his tits. The music replays and his second round of hand-shakes is far faster. Finally, he enters the ring, the lights dim and he hits his pose, considers taking off his jacket, but the farty pyro hits before he has a chance to. What a guy. Another shot of Vlad in the audience and a sign saying, “Vince McMahon is God.” No. He wrestled God.

Backstage, Sid hits a whispery shouty promo. We all know how this match is going to go, but this is before the streak, really. Since his introduction in Survivor Series 1990, Undertaker has been undefeated at the five WrestleManias he has attended – VII, VIII, IX, XI, XII (he did not attend X due to injury) – and this includes his abortion of a match against Giant Gonzales, which he was knocked out in.

In the arena, Undertaker starts his entrance which is not as long as the entrances that he has had in the past. The announcers are (rightly) silent and should be any time this cunt turns up. Brilliant shot of the Taker through the smoke, the crowd being lit now and again by the strobe. He gets to the ring and finally, people can talk.

Shawn is winged off his tits as JR references the streak. He says that he has, “Never lost at WrestleMania as the Undertaker.” But he has never fought at WrestleMania as anyone other than the Undertaker.

Sid’s music hits and he heads down to the ring, finally getting the boos he deserves. He is huge. JR tells us that Sycho Sid is not afraid of the dark. Shawn says that he, however, is afraid of the dark. Fair play, Shawn. You’re also afraid of coming down though, aren’t you? JR tells us that this is going to be a slobberknocker and it probably is. Ten years later, at No Way Out 2007, Shawn will fight Undertaker alongside Batista and Cena. They also have one of the best Royal Rumble finishes at Rumble 2007.

The SID pyro burns itself out.

No Disqualification match for the WWF World Heavyweight Championship: The Undertaker def. Sycho Sid (c) via pin in 21:19.

The two men square off. Bret Hart comes out, killing any heat. He enters the ring, gets the mic and gives off to Shawn, saying he has a “pussyfoot injury… stay out of this match.” Bret then says he is no longer friends with Taker. Sid pisses himself laughing as Bret aims on him, calling him a fraud and that he deserves the championship. Earl Hebner looks on as Sid kills the heat by powerbombing Bret in the centre of the ring. He takes the mic and tells Bret to get out of the ring. His heel-turn is complete. Sid then shouts, “Hobble on, crybaby!” Undertaker takes the time to attack Sid and the bell rings again to restart the match. Once again, brother, both men need to be in their corner before the bell goes.

Taker jumps at Sid in the corner. Michaels says, “Bret talks about being screwed. I’ll tell you what, the Undertaker has been given the shaft and never complained.” Undertaker goes for the Old School and jumps at Sid in the corner. He is caught and held in a big bearhug. Brilliant. Both men have a wee sit for a while. Both King and Shawn argue for a while. Good. This bearhug goes on… for… ever… It’s the main event at WrestleMania, by Christ. Some battering and then more bearhugs. My God.

Taker is thrown out of the ring, lands on his feet and is kicked into the French announcer’s table along with Carlos Carbrera. Sid points at Earl and says, “Shut up!” He does this twice. Sid tosses Taker through the table but it just falls over. Vince finally tells us that this match is no disqualification. Pin attempt mid-ring. Failure. Shawn puts over Taker and says that it’s hard to see when he’s hurt because he doesn’t show any emotion. Sid hits the Camel Clutch on Taker, breaks back, makes humble. Sid goes to the top rope, hits the double axe handle and Taker is rolling over, fighting back, bopping Sid with great big punches.

Irish whip rehearsal and a lovely powerslam from Sid followed by three pin attempts in a row. Mon Sid. Big old leg drop. Sid has Taker in the corner and looks to be biting his face. Sid, are you biting people now? No DQ or no no DQ, that’s awful. Taker hits the jumping punch and Sid gets the Deadman in the corner. Taker throws Sid out, rolls out after him and throws him into the crowd for about the fifth time tonight. The pair trade punches over the barricade and smacks Sid’s head off the steps. Taker goes for the high elbow, misses and the two men have a wee lie down for a while. Hard body shots from Taker followed by a big powerslam, sexy 69 pin attempt and fail. JR states that this match will not be won by a lateral press or punch, but by something bigger.

Nerve pinch by Taker and Sid is on his feet, fighting back. Taker clotheslines Sid down, pin attempt and fail. Earl Hebner isn’t doing a fine job tonight. Both men double boot each other and fall down go boom. Sid is up first, hammering Taker on the back with both fists. Sid looks worried. He goes to Bret’s rope and hits the double axe handle on Taker. JR wonders, after Sid kicks Taker, “if there is a heart in that body.” Another axe handle, another pin attempt, another fail. After Taker kicks out again, King quips that it must be demotivating to continually be denied a win. “It must do something to Sid’s mind… if he has a mind.”

Sid goes top rope, Taker sits up, punches Sid and he falls on his balls. Taker pulls Sid off the turnbuckle for a powerslam. It’s Taker’s turn to go top rope and he hits the jumping clothesline. Pin attempt and fail. King says that they’re both reluctant to use their finisher unless it doesn’t work. Taker pulls his thumb over his throat, goes for the Tombstone and Sid reverses it into a Tombstone of his own. Taker pin and the Deadman kids out. Sid throws him out of the ring.

Big punches from Sid and Taker gets the chokeslam ready but Bret appears and hits Sid twice with a chair on the back. No disqualification here. Sid is thrown into the steel ring post spine first. Taker rolls Sid into the ring, chokeslams the big Brock Samson motherfucker to the canvas but Sid kicks out. Taker runs the ropes and falls from an attack to the knee from Sid. He goes for his powerbomb, but Bret is back… again. Sid gets guillotined by Bret, a Tombstone from Undertaker and the slowest pin count in the world leaves Undertaker the new World Heavyweight Champion in 21:19.

2017 comments:

Slow, no real storyline and Bret had to be relied upon to bring drama to this match.

1997 comments:

Not the best way to end this PPV, being honest.

Grade: B

The Phenom is “finally” WWF champ, despite having held the title back in 1991 for six days between Survivor Series and This Tuesday in Texas. Thunder and lightning hits as Vlad and Faith No More Guy cheer him on. Taker holds the belt up and that’s all she wrote.

The Go Home Stats.

Man of the Matches: I would love to nominated Stone Cold Steve Austin and Bret Hart for the best WrestleMania match so far.

Woman of the Matches: Chyna. No question.

Montel Vontavious Porter Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Excellence: Bret Hart

Best Spot: Stone Cold bleeding out in the Sharpshooter.

Hatches: This is the Attitude Era debut for Road Warrior Animal, Road Warrior Hawk, the ringside debut of Chyna, D’Lo Brown, Bob Backlund. JC Ice and Wolfie D were in the ring for once and Ken Shamrock was special guest ref. Mosh and Thrasher made their debuts as well.

Matches: The Headbangers are now number one contenders for the WWF Tag Team Championship and the champions, Owen Hart and the British Bulldog, retain their title; Rocky Maivia also retained his Intercontinental title; and The Undertaker defeated Sycho Sid to begin his second reign as WWF World Heavyweight Champion.

Dispatches: Let’s see now here now. JC Ice and Wolfie D are gone from PPVs and Bob Backlund won’t reappear until the 2000 Royal Rumble. Hillbilly Jim and Sheiky Baby won’t reappear until the Gimmick Battle Royale at WrestleMania X-7. Mosh and Thrasher are gone until Ground Zero, Phil Lafon and Doug Furnas are gone until Survivor Series 1997, The Sultan won’t be back for two years and then he’ll be known as Rikishi, Sycho Sid is out until King of the Ring,

On The Card Hall Of Fame

Every “Big Four” PPV (Wrestlemania, Summerslam, Survivor Series, Royal Rumble) I will choose a man and woman to be inducted into the hall of fame. A man and woman must have been named either a Man of the Matches or Woman of the Matches in the previous months since the last “Big Four” PPV. Once a man or woman is inducted, they may not be inducted again but can still win Man of the Matches or Woman of the Matches. Through this, we can course the dizzying highs and savage lows of the wrestling landscape throughout the years. If no one new has been given the title of Man or Woman of the Matches, then a candidate will be chosen from the highest-rated matches since the last “Big Four” PPV. If no one is to be found there, then we go to the next highest-rated matches and so on. If we (unlikely) get to the bottom of the pile, then the Hall of Fame will remain empty to show the excellent calibre of the wrestlers and shallow roster.

Previous Men of the Matches: Shawn Michaels, Undertaker, Stone Cold Steve Austin.

Nominated for Man of the Matches: Big Van Vader, Stone Cold (ineligible), Bret “The Hitman” Hart.

The Winner and Entrant to the Hall of Fame is… Bret Hart for that amazing match.

Previous Women of the Matches: Sunny, N/A, N/A.

Nominated for Woman of the Matches: Chyna, Chyna.

The Winner and Entrant to the Hall of Fame is… Chyna!

In Memoriam

Each WrestleMania, I will go through the people who we have seen wrassle and lament for their passing. Cheery.

  • Alejandro Pérez Jiménez AKA Mini Mankind, May 15 1975 – June 29 2009; poisoning caused by drugs added to their drinks.
  • Andrés Alejandro Palomeque Gonzalez AKA Abismo Negro, July 1 1971 – March 22 2009; drowning.
  • Brian William Pillman, May 22 1962 – October 5 1997; heart attack caused by arteriosclerotic heart disease.
  • Captain Lou Albano, July 29 1933 – October 14 2009; heart attack. Inducted into the Hall of Fame by Joe Franklin in 1996.
  • Chris Candido AKA Skip of the Bodydonnas, March 21 1972 – April 28 2005; pneumonia due to blood clot after a broken leg caused by an injury in a steel cage match.
  • David “Davey Boy” Smith AKA The British Bulldog, November 27 1962 – May 18 2002; heart attack.
  • Doug Furnas, December 11 1959 – March 2 2012; hypertensive heart disease.
  • Gorilla Monsoon, June 4 1937 – October 6 1999; heart failure due to diabetes. Inducted into the Hall of Fame by Jim Ross in 1994.
  • Héctor Solano Segura AKA Héctor Garza, June 12 1969 – May 26 2013; lung cancer.
  • James Brian Hellwig AKA The Ultimate Warrior, June 16 1959 – April 8 2014; heart attack caused by atheroscleroticcardiovascular disease.
  • James Reiher Snuka AKA Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka, May 18 1943 – January 15 2017; unidentified terminal illness. Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1996 by Don Muraco, though his profile is no longer available due to his alleged murder of Nancy Argentino in 1983.
  • Joan Marie Laurer AKA Chyna, December 27 1969 – April 20 2016; accidental overdose.
  • Mario Pérez Jiménez AKA Mini Vader, December 18 1966 – January 23, 2016; death.
  • Michael Hegstrang AKA Road Warrior Hawk, January 26 1957 – October 19 2003; heart attack.
  • Owen Hart, May 7 1965 – May 23 1999; internal bleeding caused by blunt force trauma from a fall during Over the Edge PPV event.
  • Pedro Aguayo Ramírez AKA Perrito Aguayo, July 23 1979 – March 21 2015; cardiac arrest caused by a cervical stroke from three fractured vertebrae.
  • Rodney Agatupu Anoa’i AKA Yokozuna, October 2 1966 – October 23 2000; pulmonary edema. Inducted into the Hall of Fame by The Usos and Rikishi in 2012.
  • Terry Ray Gordy AKA The Executioner, April 23 1961 – July 16 2001; heart attack caused by a blood clot. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame by his brother Ray Gordy in 2016.
  • William Alvin Moody AKA Paul Bearer, April 10 1954 – March 5 2013; heart attack. Inducted into the Hall of Fame by Kane in 2014.

Closing Statements: Was Shane correct? Was it the best WrestleMania of all time? Nooooope. It was good and the Stone Cold/Bret Hart match was terrific, but the main event was weak and the undercard was unflattering. If you take out the Submission Match, the card was drizzling. With it in, it is merely very, very good.

On the Card will return on April 20 2017 with In Your House 14: Revenge of the ‘Taker.

 

ATTITUDE ERA #8: WRESTLEMANIA 13 (Mar 23, 1997) PART 2

Previously on On the Card: It’s Mosh! It’s Thrasher! It’s Rock and big daddy Kish!

Backstage, Todd Pettengill is speaking to Ken Shamrock. I love Shamrock. He gets the armlock on Billy Gunn, gets a drop-toe hold on Billy and then gets the ankle lock. Ken says he will be a fair and just ref but also kick the shite out of anyone who crosses him.

Cut to Dok Hendrix, who is interviewing Hunter Hearst Helmsley and Chyna! Oh, glorious Chyna! What a wonderful woman! Dok asks what the relationship is with Chyna. Trips says, “You don’t need to know anything about [our relationship].” He says he’s going to fight Goldust and for Marlena to watch out for Chyna.

Ode to Joy hits and out comes Trips with Chyna. Two signs, side by side in the crowd: “When Hunter and Chyna get silly, who got the willy?” and “Hunter+Chyna, who wears the pants in the family!” there is also a question mark there, floating mysteriously on the card. Vince laughs at it, and so continues the “is Chyna a man?” jokes that started at Final Four when she grabbed at Marlena. Nice, WWF. Very progressive. The announcers continue to slag her. King says she was such an ugly baby that she was breastfed by her father.

The Slammy-award-winning Best Couple of 1996 come down, Goldust and Marlena. I love Goldust. He pops into the ring with his lovely big wig and cloak. Marlena is on the outside. Gold dust falls from the sky.

Hunter Hearst Helmsley (w/ Chyna) def. Goldust (w/ Marlena) via pin in 14:28.

Goldie is having a squat mid-ring. That’s what he thinks of Trips. They stare at each other until Goldie explodes from his sitting position to take down Trips. Irish whip and Goldie falls to his knees, cracks Trips with the uppercut and goes for the ten punch but not before spitting on Chyna. Brilliant. Lovely atomic drop and Trips is thrown out of the ring. Chyna watches on, looking fantastic.

I am a bit of a Chyna mark and I cannot tell you how it began or why. I just love her. I think he’s wonderful.

Trips is on the apron and Goldust bops him, wrapping HHH up in an Andre the Giant spot, arms in the ropes. The announcers slag Helmsley’s nose and Goldust throws him back into the ring. Airhorn in the audience and HHH fights back. Goldust hits a lovely powerslam on Trips, goes to top rope and HHH goes up to give Goldie a lovely superplex but Goldust fights back and is eventually thrown into the barricades. Chyna gives him the best side-eye you’ve ever seen. She’s a great woman. Trips throws Goldie back in, goes top rope, jumps and attemps a pin. Trips removes Goldust’s top and gives crazy slaps and stomps. Marlena is watching. Hunter hits a lovely Irish whip followed by another and a swinging neckbreaker.

Chyna has not moved once and is starting straight ahead. Vince says that Marlena is watching in anguish… she is not. Neither women are showing any form of emotion. Trips has Goldust in an abdominal stretch and Trips tries to grab for the ropes and the ref stops it. Good man yourself. Rest hold city between these boys and Hunter is trying his hardest to hold Goldust down. Goldie hits Trips in the nuts, fights back and gets a boot to the face for his effort. Lovely suplex by Trips and he goes to give the knee across Goldust’s forehead. Goldust lifts his hand, gets a pop from the crowd and finally fights back, getting some nice slaps in and a DDT for his effort.

Another Irish whip, a pin attempt followed by pin attempt followed by Trips getting his energy back. Hunter lifts Goldust up and another pin attempt. Lovely cross-body and Goldust gets knocked down. Trips goes top rope and Guldust… butt butts him out of mid air. Keister clobber, according to King. Goldust fights back and trips is wrapped right around the turnbuckle. Lovely bulldog from Goldust and almost a pin attempt.

Chyna is moving! Fuck the action in the ring! Chyna is moving to Marlena! Goldust attempts the Curtain Call and it is reversed into the Pedigree and reversed again into the Curtain Call. Goldust sees Chyna standing with Marlena, walks over and straight-up lifts Marlena up onto the apron. Trips bumps Goldust from behind and Marlena flies into Chyna’s arms. Bear hug ensues. Trips hits the Pedigree and Hunter gets the pin in 14:28.

2017 comments:

Not the best match from either men, but Chyna was there, so match of the year.

1997 comments:

It was just a spot with a match prelude.

Grade: B

Trips and Chyna high-five each other. Helmsley bows to his fallen enemies, leaves the ring and we see Goldust carry his wife backstage.

Cut to Shawn Michaels not being able to use his laptop, not unlike a spot he will recreate ten years later at Cyber Sunday 2006. The man beside him is no help whatsoever.

Back in the arena, it’s time, it’s time, it’s Vader time. Time for Vader. We have Mankind, Vader and Paul Bearer. These two men are pulled together for the sole reason because Paul has worked with them. Old Percy gives the camera a lovely wee wink.

British Bulldog and Slammy-Award-Winning Owen Hart. He has two Slammys. JR appears to ask Bulldog about Owen. Bulldog seems to have no idea what’s happening. Someone in the crowd has used their inkjet printer to create an Owen Hart poster.

WWF Tag Team Championship: Owen Hart and The British Bulldog (c) vs. Mankind and Vader (w/Paul Bearer) ends in double countout in 16:08.

Great. Let’s get this terrible party started.

This is a match that is thrown together with little build-up. JR makes a Ru-Paul reference, the cheeky bastard. Owen is due to start with Vader. Both men lock up and Vader slaps the shite out of Owen, cheering to the crowd. How can a man the size and strength of Vader be in a match with Owen and not toss him about like Brock? This should be a monster vs. man match to put Bulldog over. Imagine with Owen takes a beating forever and Vader orders about Mankind and then when the hot tag happens, Bulldog squares up to Vader and takes him down? Imagine it.

Vader beats on Owen and brings him to the corner to give the Vader Bomb. Bulldog sneakily bops Vader in the leg and Mankind comes in. Both men stomp on Bulldog for a bit and get the double clothesline. Then Owen gives them both a dropkick. Vince wonders if a tag has been made as Mankind and Bulldog are in. Lovely suplex from Bulldog and Vader pops in to get a suplex as well. Vader comes across as weak as a kitten. Christ, man, you’re four hundred pounds!

The crowd cheer Owen and JR plugs AOL. Yes, AOL. Brian Pillman, Sunny and Shawn were on it earlier. Brilliant. Shawn is still in the Fed, still looking for his smile. Mayhaps that was what he was searching for earlier? Vader hits Bulldog in the back of the head with the urn and Percy smiles like a child at the camera. Great. Vader hits Bulldog with a great suplex and now the big man is beating on our man Davey Boy, kicking seven shades of shite out of him. This is how it should be. Vader goes to Bret’s rope and hits a lovely splash on Bulldog. Mankind is tagged in and Mick goes crazy on Bulldog. Vince puts over the UK, as they are watching on Sky Sports (the same Sky Sports that my buddy Shane was taping this off!) and Mankind hits a great back-body drop on Bulldog.

Vader comes back in and Mankind rushes back to grab Bulldog so that he may not get the big tag onto Owen. Vader barges into Bulldog, goes to Bret’s rope and as he jumps, Bulldog catches him in mid-air to hit the powerslam. Hot tag to Owen and the wee man batters about the ring, hitting cross-bodies and pin attempts and kip-ups. Vader finally gets the best of him and both heels wave to the crowd like ghouls. Mankind is in and Bulldog rushes in, distracting the ref and allowing Vader to attack Owen. JR can’t say Vader’s name. He calls him Paul. Goose.

Mankind attempts to hit the suplex on Owen and fails, finally getting the guillotine on him. Cut to Stu and Helen Hart in the front row. Both people give about as much emotion as Diana Hart Smith. Remember her?

Lovely DDT to Mankind and knees to the midsection stop a lovely belly drop from Owen. Irish whip to the corner and spinning leg to stop Mankind. Pin attempt and Vader is back in. They’re keeping Owen and Bulldog away from each other. Vader is bopping Owen in the corner. JR (smartly) says that you need to isolate the smaller man – Owen – from the bigger man – Bulldog. Vader hits a great legdrop but Owen still fights back. Mankind is in, Owen is out, Bulldog is in and Owen hits a running belly-to-belly on Vader. Stu is watching the camera more than the match. Lovely kick to Mankind’s head and Bulldog is in. Vader’s mask goes flying. Mankind is thrown into the ringpost twice. Bulldog goes for the powerslam and Mankind gets on the Mandible Claw. Both Bulldog and Mankind fall out of the ring. Ref starts a super-fast count and both legal men are counted out in 16:08.

2017 comments:

Screwy finish and awful fast count. This match was leading up to something good but never reached it.

1997 comments:

Mick was in it. Match of the night… but wait… Chyna was in the other match. I’m torn.

Grade: B

Owen goes to Mankind, pulls at his hair and Vader breaks it up, throwing Owen into the steel steps. Mankind will not let go of Bulldog, but Vader pulls at his hair until he does, kicking and screaming. Owen goes to Bulldog and both Vader and Mankind leave. Bulldog is up on his feet within seconds and the pair of them go to get their tag titles.

On the Card will return on April 6 2017 with the third part of WrestleMania 13.

ATTITUDE ERA #8: WRESTLEMANIA 13 (Mar 23, 1997) PART 1

On the Card: Attitude Era #10 WrestleMania 13 – March 23, 1997

In the previous entry, I looked at In Your House 13: Final Four. It was okay. The next PPV was WrestleMania! The thirteenth of its name!

Over the next few weeks, I will review this PPV from the perspectives of a fan looking back at it after two decades as well as my original thoughts as a teenager watching it at the time (though this particular PPV was one I watched in 1998 as my family did not have the channels necessary to watch wrasslin’).

WWF In Your House 13: Final Four 1997

Heat!

That’s right, motherfuckers: heat!

If there is one thing I remember about WrestleMania 13, it’s that I was always told it was the greatest Mania of all time. Back in the day, my family couldn’t afford PPVs and sometime in 2000, Channel 4 here in Ireland got the WWF. It was terrific. Until then, I had to rely on my friends who sometimes taped parts of Raw and some PPVs. It was like a really bad jigsaw puzzle… or every JRPG where you need to collect the sacred relics to recreate the yadda yadda and one part is in the frigid northlands (my friend Peter may have had the first hour of the Rumble) and the second bit is in the swamp (my buddy Decky had a lot of Mania 14, but the rest was some badly-dubbed German porn) etc. etc. A lot of my wrestling knowledge of this time comes from these sketchy memories, later helped by the advent of DVD and my job in TK Maxx that fuelled my extensive PPV collection. What I remember about Mania 13 is that my buddy Shane had it on tape and it was amazing to watch.

This takes me back. The PPV opens with a WrestleMania retrospective (including, 30 seconds in, a lovely shot of Pamela Anderson). We see Undertaker, Stone Cold, NOD, Sid, Bret, LOD and an announcer who thinks that he is narrating Game of Thrones. He also calls WrassleMania “the granddaddy of them all”, which is great.

Brilliant early nineties snazzy music as the weakest pyro in Christendom announces our arrival to the Rosemount Horizon, Rosemount, Chicago, Illinois. Playstation presents WrassleMania 13! Our announcers are growling Vincent Kennedy McMahon… and we don’t know who else because he doesn’t introduce them! There were 19,197 in attendance, with 16,467 paying with 2,730 comps and an average ticket sale of $50 per person. 237,000 buys at home, a dip from the 290,000 the year before, but the lowest PPV sales since the 1986 Mania which had a quarter of a million buys. This marks the steady decline in sales that started in 1993 and just kept getting lower until the sales exploded again the next year. Since then, they have remained (fairly) steady and around the 1,000,000 mark.

It is worth noting that this is often cited as the beginning of the Attitude Era, along with King of the Ring (my own personal “beginning”) and Survivor Series 1997 and the “Montreal Screwjob”.

Some cunts in the front row, some smarky ones have Blue World Order signs and t-shirts.

And before anything else happens, just to remind people that before the Attitude Era, there was childish nonsense, the Godwinns music hits and the pair of them rock up with Hillbilly Jim.

 (Note: Before the PPV began there was a dark match featuring Billy Gunn defeating Flash Funk and his two Funkettes: Tracy and Nadine.)

The Fink introduces the four-team elimination match as Phineas I. Godwinn and Henry O. Godwinn slap the shite out of everyone’s hands.

We finally get introduced to our announce team: Jerry “The King” Lawler, Vince McMahon and Jumping Jim “JR” Ross. Out Spanish announcers and clear stars of the show are Hugo Savinovich and Carlos Cabrera. French announcers are Jean Brassard and Ray Rougeau. Great. Vince says, “In any language, it spells, ‘excitement’.”

The Headbangers come down, old Mosh and Thrasher, and we get told the rules: A tag can be made to any man. Any man at all. Two partners can tag themselves in, if they damn well please. When one member of a team is eliminated, they are both eliminated and the last team remaining wins. What do they win? They are the number one contender for the WWF Tag Team Championship of course! And where are the Tag Team Champions? Later in the PPV they wrassle, so chill young blood.

Down come Stiffy McStiff, Doug Furnas and Phil LaFon. There is little craic from the pair of them.

Before the New Blackjacks come down, we see the New Blackjacks, Cunt Bradshaw and Blackjack Windham AKA Barry Windham.

All hell breaks loose and the bell goes.

Four-Way Elimination Tag Match for the Number One Contender for the WWF Tag Team Championship: The Headbangers (Mosh and Thrasher) def. The New Blackjacks (Blackjack Windham and Blackjack Bradshaw, The Godwinns (Phineas I. Godwinn and Henry O. Godwinn) (w/ Hillbilly Jim) and Doug Furnas and Phil Lafon in 10:39.

Christ, what a long title, by gum.

Everyone is fighting each other and trying to get the teams to their respective corners (which is stupid on his part, the ref should not have allowed the bell to ring). Bradshaw and Henry wrassle for a bit. Thrasher is tossed in and takes a boot from Bradshaw. Bradshaw, of course, in decent shape for a change. Bradshaw tags in Phineas and I can see that the wide-angle hard cam has some frame rate issues and I (hope) it’s not my ancient DVD that is doing it. Mosh is tagged in and the pair have to wrassle each other. Both the Headbangers have metal t-shirts on, with Mosh rocking a Metallica and Thrasher with a White Zombie T. The pair of them actually fight and tag in Phil Lafon with a lovely double flapjack. Blackjack Windham is in with his big moustache. Doug Furnas rocks in and hits a jumping hurricanrana. He tries a leapfrog, is caught, powerbombed and Bradshaw is tagged in.

King debates whether or not if two team members are in the ring and pin each other… do they both leave? Yes. Yes they do. Bradshaw drops Doug onto the outside. Bradshaw gets himself DQ’d by throwing the ref onto the ground.

Blackjack Bradshaw has been eliminated by DQ. The Blackjacks are eliminated in 4:55.

Doug Furnas and Phil Lafon have been eliminated in 4:55.

Stupid, stupid Bradshaw. He really does come across like the king of cunts, doesn’t he? Well he is. He’s the worst.

Phineas bodyslams Mosh then bodyslams Henry onto him. Silly gooses. Lovely huge delayed suplex. Jerry makes a Clinton joke. Say it to my face, Jerry, I dare you.

Henry tosses Thrasher into the corner. They spit on each other for a while. Thrasher does a lovely Flair flop spot and Mosh is tagged. Both Henry and Mosh go over the top rope. Mosh goes in first and guillotines Henry before jumping from the top rope. He shouts at the camera and then tosses Thrasher off the top rope. Vince tells us to forget about it and we do.

Jerry asks Vince if he has any White Zombie CDs. He doesn’t get it. Lovely big moonsault from Thrasher and he hits the hot tag on Mosh. Phineas clears the ring, throws Thrasher out, goes for the Slop Drop but it’s broken up. Mosh hits the seated senton and gets the pin in 10:39

Henry O. Godwinn has been eliminated by Mosh. The Godwinns are eliminated in 10:39.

The Headbangers are the winners and Number One Contenders for the WWF Tag Team Championship!

2017 comments:

Not bad, actually, and the crowd seemed to be into it. Seemed like a match called on the fly and would have preferred if it was just Godwinns vs. Headbangers without the bit at the start, being honest.

1997 comments:

I like these Headbanger yokes. Maybe I should listen to some White Zombie.

Grade: B

JR tries to explain the seated senton to us. They go backstage.

There is a promo for In Your House on April 20th. It doesn’t have a name yet. It will be “Revenge of the Taker”.

Back in the ring, it’s the fucking Honky Tonk Man. Captain Lou Albano is there. He’s the best. JR namedrops the fact that Honky and King are cousins.

The Sultan’s music hits and out comes Sheiky Baby with Rikishi, who, despite being a Samoan, is pretending to be Persian. Bob Backlund is there too, for some unknown reason. Sultan wears a mask. He could be a great gimmick, but it isn’t. This is an Intercontinental Championship match but there’s no history here.

Down runs Slammy Award-winning proto-Rock, Rocky Maivia. He has the old sideburns there as well.

Sheiky throws the flag about. Close up of Tony Atlas, tag partner of Rock’s dad, Rocky Johnson.

WWF Intercontinenatal Championship match: Rocky Maivia (c) def. The Sultan (w/ Bob Backlund and The Iron Sheik) via pin in 9:45.

Rock and Sultan are cousins in real life. Later, Sultan will run over Stone Cold Steve Austin for The Rock. Honky gives off because he says Rock is growing sideburns to impress him. Rock does this weird finger thing and Sultan bops him. Kip-up and the Rock kicks the shite out of Sultan, throwing him out. Rocky goes top rope but Sultan doesn’t see him. The crowd roar, “Rocky sucks!” and we see the beginning of the hatred for Rock. Jerry says that Rocky’s name should be Rookie! Brilliant.

Sultan kicks Rock in the gut and Rock is up, taking a choke-throw to the corner. Sultan attempts to pin Rock and fails. Rock covers his mouth to have a chat with Sultan, fights back, ducks a clothesline, takes a knee to the knee for his trouble and a lovely backbreaker. Sultan goes top rope and misses Rock, but both sell it anyways. Another cover, another fail. Irish whip and Rocky hits the sunset flip. Sultan double-chokes Rocky to lift him up, hits the belly-to-belly and another pin attempt. The announcers shit on Sultan and his speed.

Rest hold city from the pair of them. Earl Hebner is watching. Jerry makes a Christopher Reeve joke. Oy vey. More rest holds from Sultan. Rock looks like he might be out. The crowd is quite, quite dead. Earl hits my favourite spot – the hand drop! On the third, Rock wakes up and both men hit the clothesline at the same time. Rock rolls over onto Sultan and after a kickout, both men jump up. Shite selling, boys. You can’t be unconscious and wake up in seconds. Lovely punches, lovely dropkick, Rock hits the belly-to-belly, gets a kickout after two, hits a lovely spinning DDT, goes to the top rope, hits the cross-body and Sheiky Baby is distracting the ref. Sultan is up, but Rock hits the punches, the kicks, gets a superkick to the jaw, kicks out of a pin. Sultan piledrives Rock into the damn canvas and Honky makes a wheelchair reference. For shame, boys. Rocky hits the roll-up and gets the win by pin in 9:45.

2017 comments:

An okay match. Badly paced, though and neither men know how to sell.

1997 comments:

Are all these lads related?

Grade: B

JR goes to speak to Rock and Sultan is up and beating on Rock with the Intercontinental belt. Sheiky Baby, Backlund and Sultan beat on Rock. Sultan hits the frog splash, Sheik gets the camel clutch, breaks back, makes humble. Rocky Johnson is in the ring! By Christ, he’s in, he’s battering on Sultan and helping up Rock. Sultan gets the flag, beats on Rocky Johnson, tears off his shirt and Sheiky goes to camel Clutch but Rock is up, knocking Sultan out, turns on Sheiky Baby, hits a lovely scoop slam and Rocky does the same. Both men punch out Sheik and the pair of them hug mid-ring, shirts off. Earl cleans the house.

On the Card will return on March 30 2017 with the second part of WrestleMania 13.

Attitude Era #8: Royal Rumble 1997 (Jan 19, 1997) Part 4

Previously on On the Card: Stone Cold cheats his way to victory.

Promo for the bad attitudes from the two men. We see Sid’s heel-turn where he attacked José Lothario. No apologies from Sid. Bad CGI of Shawn looking out a window into a WWF arena. The two men kick seven shades of shite out of one another and Sid powerbombs José’s 19-year-old son.

But back to the crowd… and then another cut to JR speaking to Shawn Michaels at Superstars. Shawn slurs through a promo. He says José means more to him than any other person on God’s green earth other than his mother and father. He’s threatening Sid saying that the champ will not be fighting just Shawn, but also thousands of San Antonians. Bit pointed.

Cut to Shawn and José walking down towards the ring. Vince says that it is a long walk. Music hits, crowd goes wild and Shawn leaves the Gorilla position to high five the crowd and say, “Yeah!” a lot. The big ring of lights is centre stage as Shawn poses, firing off some pyro mid-ring. What a matchup! What an entrance! This is what wrestling would grow into, where the entrances are almost as important as the action in the ring. The song repeats and… is that Sunny in the crowd? Jeepers. Sunny days indeed.

Cut to the back where Heel Sid walks slowly down the same corridor, heading to Gorilla position and out into the arena. Big boos from the crowd, actually. Fair play to them. Laser on his face as he punches the crowd’s fists and asks them if they know who the man is. The man is (supposedly) you, Sid. Sid sees Superfan Vlad and ignores Superfan The Dude (Faith No More Guy), who is wearing a blue BWO t-shirt. JR tells us that Sid has a “smattering of fans”, which is interesting considering so many were desperate for touching him.

Big SID sign in pyro goes off behind him.

WWF Championship match: Shawn Michaels def. Sycho Sid (c) via pin in 13:49.

Sid and Shawn square off. Sid gives Shawn one shove and he rolls right back. A second shove and Sid takes over, tossing Shawn about. HBK replies with a crossbody and kicks Sid out of the ring. Big pop from the crowd. Referee Earl Hebner holds Shawn back as we wait for Sid to get up. Shawn moves him back and goes out to help Sid up. Sid smacks Shawn and he reverses. Sid throws Shawn into the ring, lifts for the gorilla press and Shawn escapes with a rake to the eyes. Shawn goes top rope and Sid catches him for a powerslam. Front row is José’s son, who gives such advice as, “Get him!”

Sid gives Shawn a Camel Clutch, breaks back, makes humble. Sid bumps Shawn and gives the Camel Clutch again. JR tells us that this is the last time José Lothario will manage Shawn… it’s also the last time we see Shawn for a while, but that’s neither here nor there. Sid goes for a third bump, Shawn dodges it and takes over, giving some lovely punches, taking a huge turnbuckle bump, turned inside out, upside down and falls outside. Shawn lies there as Sid scoops Shawn, smashes him into the ring post once, twice and tosses Shawn in the ring for the pin.

Sid lifts Shawn up and hits him on the lower back. Sid gets Shawn in a rest hold and HBK fights to his feet before turned inside out by Sid’s clothesline. Sid taunts the crowd, goes for a pin, fails. Brilliant toss to the turnbuckle and Sid does the same again, catching Shawn for the bear hug. JR puts over the fact that Sid is keeping it simple. Shawn has said that he has “the flu”, that is to say “been strung out on pain pills for ages”. Cut to shots of Hawn’s parents ringside. Looking desperate.

Michaels hits Sid with a great Atomic Drop. He goes to Brets rope and attempts a jumping punch twice, Sid catching him on the second. The bear hug lasts forever and is a soft, soft, lovely bear hug. Sid goes for the pin, fails, leg drops, pins, fails. Chinlock city. It’s been sit down City over here. Shawn gets up, bodyslams Sid, hits the lariat, kips up, goes for a top-rope elbow, nails Sid and tunes up the band. Sid catches Sweet Chin Music and tosses Michaels out. Somebody tell these boys that the Royal Rumble match is over. Sid powerbombs Shawn to the outside and goes to chokeslam both Lotharios, Jr and Sr. Shawn fights back and Earl takes a ref bump. Sid chokeslams Shawn, goes for the pin, the official is out and a second ref comes in for the count, hitting the one, two and Shawn kicks out.

Sid causes another ref bump as the second one is hit by Sid. José goes to the rope, distracts Sid and Shawn gets a camera, knocks Sid down, goes for the pin and Earl makes his way laboriously to count the pin but Sid kicks out! My God! Shawn tunes up the band and hits Sid with Sweet Chin Music, getting the pin and win in 13:49.

2017 comments:

Worst match I’ve seen of Shawn’s so far in this blog. Really bad. No psychology, no real energy, just a bunch of rest holds followed by a spot at the end.

1997 comments:

Shawn looks like a drug addict.

Grade: C

Shawn bows to the crowd, his own hometown crowd and is awarded the WWF Championship by José Lothario. He celebrates with everyone else as the song repeats and some fucker whistles as loud as he can. For real, it is suuuuper loud. Go and shut up, eh?

People begin to file out as he goes to the parents and gives them a wee cuddle. He hugs his family and it turns out that the whistler is his sister! He climbs over Jerry, pats Vince on the back, almost strangles him with a hug and shoves his arse in his face. Whistling continues as he does a wee tour of the crowd, shaking hands with everyone. We see a replay of the heel move Shawn had busting Sid with the camera and getting the pin. Both superfans Vlad and Faith No More Guy shake his hands as the song repeats! Then we have a recap of the entire PPV from the HHH vs. Goldust match to NOD vs Ahmed, Vader and Taker (mit Paul unt Urn bump), the Royal Rumble feat. Stone Cold, giant 2×4, Bret coming out and Austin’s “elimination” followed by Bret’s tantrum. Then we see the match again! More Sid bumps and Shawn winning! The PPV ends with a bit of a wet fart.

The Go Home Stats.

Man of the Matches: Legit bad PPV with little big men other than, of course, Stone Cold Steve Austin who survived for over 45 minutes in the Royal Rumble, eliminated 10 people and, like Christ before him, was struck down and rose again to judge the living and the dead and his kingdom will have no end.

Woman of the Matches: There were literally no women in this PPV other than Jacqueline, Sable and Marlena.

Montel Vontavious Porter Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Excellence: Stone Cold Steve Austin.

Best Spot: There were none, but I’ll put in Stone Cold’s false elimination and clearing the house in ten seconds flat.

Hatches: We have Canek, Cibernético, Mil Máscaras, Fuerza Guerrera, Heavy Metal, Hector Garza, Jerry Estrada, Latin Lover, Perro Aguaya, Pierroth from the AAA alongside Terry Funk and Curtis Hughes. Terry Funk will disappear for two years and return at the 1998 Royal Rumble, Curtis Hughes will not be back until Unforgiven 1999 and the AAA guys? Well… just check dispatches.

Matches: Hunter Hearst Helmsley retains his Intercontinental Championship and Shawn Michaels wins the WWF Championship for his second reign.

Dispatches: Canek, Cibernético, Mil Máscaras, Fuerza Guerrera, Heavy Metal, Hector Garza, Jerry Estrada, Latin Lover, Perro Aguaya, Pierroth, Razor Ramon, José Lothario, Jake Roberts, Diesel (until he returns as Kane) and Jerry Lawler and Shawn Michaels (until KOTR 97).

On The Card Hall Of Fame

Every “Big Four” PPV (Wrestlemania, Summerslam, Survivor Series, Royal Rumble) I will choose a man and woman to be inducted into the hall of fame. A man and woman must have been named either a Man of the Matches or Woman of the Matches in the previous months since the last “Big Four” PPV. Once a man or woman is inducted, they may not be inducted again but can still win Man of the Matches or Woman of the Matches. Through this, we can course the dizzying highs and savage lows of the wrestling landscape throughout the years. If no one new has been given the title of Man or Woman of the Matches, then a candidate will be chosen from the highest-rated matches since the last “Big Four” PPV. If no one is to be found there, then we go to the next highest-rated matches and so on. If we (unlikely) get to the bottom of the pile, then the Hall of Fame will remain empty to show the excellent calibre of the wrestlers and shallow roster.

Previous Men of the Matches: Shawn Michaels, Undertaker.

Nominated for Man of the Matches: Flash Funk, Leif Cassidy, Stone Cold Steve Austin.

The Winner and Entrant to the Hall of Fame is… Austin for winning the Royal Rumble!

Previous Women of the Matches: Sunny, N/A.

Nominated for Woman of the Matches: No one, No one.

The Winner and Entrant to the Hall of Fame is… No one again, for the second time in a row!

The Year in Reviews

Each Royal Rumble, I will give you some information of the past year of reviews for you stat-heads out there.

In 1996, the biggest movie at the time was Independence Day, which made $817,400,891 worldwide, followed by Twister and Mission Impossible. The biggest hit single of the year was Los Del Rio’s “Macarena”, which is shite, followed by Spice Girls “Wannabe” and Celine Dion’s “Because You Loved Me”.

Boris Yeltsin and Bill Clinton win their second terms as President of Russia and the USA respectively, the Nintendo 64 and Pokémon Red and Green are is released in Japan, a meteorite from Mars contained evidence of primitive lifeforms and Carl Sagan died.

In wrasslin’ news, the WWF Championship was held by Bret for 133 days since Nov 19 1995 until Shawn Michaels held it for 231 days from March 31 to November 17 where Sycho Sid held it into the New Year. Goldust held the Intercontinental Championship for 71 days from January 21 until he lost it in a match to Savio Vega and won it again the same night to hold it for 83 days from April 1 until Ahmed Johnson won it at King of the Ring, June 23; he vacated it after legit kidney problems (kayfabed as an attack by Faarooq) and Marc Mero won it on Sept 23, held it for 28 days until Triple H won it on Oct 21 and brought it into the New Year. The Tag Team Championship was brought into 1996 by the Smoking Gunns, who vacated it on Feb 15 after 143 days of holding it due to Billy Gunn having a neck injury. The Bodydonnas picked it up on March 31 and held it for 49 days until the Godwins picked it up on May 19, held it for a week, dropped it to The Smoking Gunns on May 29 and they held it until September 22 when The British Bulldog and Owen Hart brought it into the New Year. We had the Curtain Call at MSG, the formation of the NWO with Razor Ramon and Diesel leaving for WCW and the rise of Stone Cold and The Rock. Kurt Angle also won Olympic gold with a broken fuckin’ neck.

Closing Statements: A real let down and, unfortunately, it seems to be the end for Shawn Michaels for the next wee while.

On the Card will return on February 16 2017 with In Your House 13: Final Four.

Attitude Era #8: Royal Rumble 1997 (Jan 19, 1997) Part 3

Previously on On the Card: Mexicans steal the show!

In the ring, Howard Finkel tells us that there are 60,477 people in the Alamodome. I love how the Fed just love wanking themselves off over the size of their crowds. Fink tells us that the Royal Rumble is about to begin, with a new man joining each 90 seconds, eliminations can only take place by falling outside. The winner is the last man standing and they will face the WWF champ at Wrasslemania.

Our first entrant is Crush, coming in with his NOD team of JC Ice and Wolfie D with Immigration Clarence Mason and two unnamed NOD men. Only Shawn Michaels has won from the number one spot.

Number two comes out: Ahmed Johnson! What a wet fart.

The 1997 Royal Rumble.

A First Challenger Appears: Crush.

A Second Challenger Appears: Ahmed Johnson.

NOTE: The times given for each elimination are how long the competitor stayed in the ring.

Ahmed slides in and Crush beats on him, picking up where Faarooq left off. Ahmed gets a big head of steam on him and Ahmed fights back, tossing him about. The two men roll around for a while and are aiming to kick seven shades of shite out of each other. They are just wasting time, waiting for number three to come out and the crowd is dead.

A Third Challenger Appears: Razor Ramon.

No theme Ramon comes out, the crowd boo and he gets stuck in, punching and building up a big head of steam before Ahmed throws him out for a bit of a pop.

Razor Ramon has been eliminated by Ahmed Johnson in 17 seconds.

Vince was obviously trying to give a wee bit of a “fuck you,” to the real Razor Ramon, who was in WCW. Ahmed throws Crush over the top rope but he holds on tight. Ahmed then leaps out of the ring, over the top rope, eliminating himself in his desperate chase after Faarooq, who has come to ringside.

Ahmed Johnson has been eliminated by Ahmed Johnson in 3:02.

Why didn’t he slide under the ropes? Dope!

Crush is all alone in the ring, arms on his hips when music hits! Who is it?

A Fourth Challenger Appears: Phineas I. Godwinn.

It’s Phineas with Hillbilly Jim. I haven’t seen this boy in quite some time, since the Survivor Series, in fact, just over two months ago. It’s good to see you back, Mideon. It will be even better when you carve shit on your face and crawl around the floor for a while. So far, there has been one spot in the match and the rest has been badly choreographed brawling. I understand that the men can’t use the whole ring due to the fact that there may be others there, but still.

A Fifth Challenger Appears: Stone Cold Steve Austin.

Ohhhhh, business is about to pick up! I legit popped when I heard the smashing glass. It’s built into me, like when a someone hears a baby cry. Phineas and Crush start to work. Phineas tosses Stone Cold into the corner to a huge pop. Austin does not take kindly to that and when Crush holds Phineas, Austin hits a Bret’s Rope clothesline on him but Phineas ducks and throws Crush over the ropes.

Crush has been eliminated by Phineas I Godwinn in 6:17.

A timer pops up on the bottom of the screen to tell us that number six is coming in shortly. Stone Cold wastes no time in hitting the stunner on Phineas and tossing him out as Bart Gunn’s music hits.

Phineas I Godwinn has been eliminated by Stone Cold Steve Austin in 2:52.

A Sixth Challenger Appears: Bart Gunn.

Bodacious Bart Gun runs to the ring as a dude who looks the spit of a time-travelling Michael Cole cheers him on from the crowd. We have number five and six in the match at the moment, let’s see how long they last.

Austin catches Bart and the pair have dodgy punches, an even dodgier leg drop and Austin tosses Bart out after a botch.

Bart Gunn has been eliminated by Stone Cold Steve Austin in 26 seconds.

Austin falls to the floor and does some push-ups. He sits on the turnbuckle and relaxes for some time, pretends to check his watch and the timer comes up to announce…

A Seventh Challenger Appears: Jack “The Snake” Roberts.

It’s the 1996 King of the Ring finalists! And they’re back! It’s a match eight months in the making!

Jake has a great head of steam and the crowd bay for a DDT but Jake is denying them it, holding Stone Cold in a lovely armbar. The ref sneaks in and takes Damien’s bag as it is just sitting mid-ring.

An Eighty Challenger Appears: The British Bulldog.

Bulldog runs to the ring and slips and slides in. During his entrance, we see on the Titantron behind him that Jack was eliminated! Yeah!

Jake “The Snake” Roberts has been eliminated by Stone Cold Steve Austin in 1:10.

Bulldog attacks Stone Cold, stomps a mudhole in him and walks it dry. Bulldog gets a semi-pop for this and continues to beat on Austin before hitting the running powerslam. He pulls on Austin’s pants as the Rattlesnake crawls for the ropes like a coward. The timer appears and…

A Ninth Challenger Appears: Pierroth.

Oh, it’s one of the AAA stars. Let’s see if the Fed stars give him any time at all in the ring. I hope they do, it will be lovely of them. Pierroth hits Bulldog and gets a gruesome spinebuster for his troubles. Bulldog returns to Austin but Pierroth interferes and hits a lovely snapmare. Austin gets involved and the Fed stars beat on the Mexican for a while. The timer pops up as Austin grips to the bottom rope.

A Tenth Challenger Appears: The Sultan.

Hey, now, it’s Rikishi in a mask with Shieky Baby! This is great. Rikishi used to be one of the members of the Headshrinkers, but it wasn’t until he got the Rikishi gimmick that he rocked the house. It’s a shame that his sons are shit. Sultan hits Pierroth with a lovely bodyslam and the timer appears AGAIN!

An Eleventh Challenger Appears: Mil Máscaras.

Another AAA star, Mil comes out for a wee jog, waving to the crowd and getting involved. Mil batters Sultan and hits a lovely lariat on the big man. Five lads in the ring, it’s the midcard spot at the moment where everyone just hugs each other and waits for the next person… and out he comes.

A Twelfth Challenger Appears: Hunter Hearst Helmsley.

Ode to Joy hits as Triple H slides into the ring, goes straight after Bulldog and pops him with a right hand. Sultan comes over to help eliminate them but Mil grabs trips. Bulldog hits a clothesline and Sultan does his lovely Rikishi bump before falling out of the ring.

The Sultan has been eliminated by The British Bulldog in 3:23.

Bulldog wastes no time in getting back involved and Stone Cold almost eliminates Trips, but he rolls back in. Austin replies with an elbow drop.

A Thirteeth Challenger Appears: Slammy Award Winning Owen Hart.

Fuck yes! And he arrives with his Slammy! What a man! The fucking Blue Blazer is in the match! There are still six men and we’re not even halfway through yet. Austin is about to be tossed out but Owen comes over and throws out Bulldog instead!

The British Bulldog has been eliminated by Slammy Award Winning Owen Hart in 8:04.

Bulldog and Owen argue for a bit as Owen goes to beat on Mil. The timer comes up and another sixth man will join the Rumble.

A Fourteenth Challenger Appears: Goldust.

Goldust! Woop! He runs to the ring like a mad pervert and Austin is on him instantly. Lovely bodyslam in the middle of the ring as Owen/Mil and Trips/Pierroth are to the side, trying to push each other over. Owen almost falls but saves himself. Everyone tries to throw Goldust out. The timer reappears…

A Fifteenth Challenger Appears: Cibernético.

Another AAA man comes in. Cibernético looks a bit like a Lucha married the Predator as he has dreadlock hair and a mask. Seven men in the ring now and it is looking super duper busy. We have three masks, one painted face, one singlet, tights and Stone Cold in pants. Nothing happens until the timer reappears.

A Sixteenth Challenger Appears: Marvellous Wildman Marc Mero.

He appears with Sable, and that’s all right by the crowd but in the middle of it, Cibernético is knocked out!

Cibernético has been eliminated by Mil Máscaras and Pierroth in 1:25.

Shortly afterwards, Mil turns on Pierroth and knocks him out, too!

Pierroth has been eliminated by Mil Máscaras in 10:32.

And then Mil goes to the top rope, jumps out and eliminates himself!

Mil Máscaras has been eliminated by Mil Máscaras in 7:28.

What a goose! Obviously the ring was getting busy and the Mexicans thought, “Let’s get out while the getting’s good!” and all left. Fair play to the boys, actually, they came in together and left together. Mil goes back into the ring and the refs tell him to leave. We have five men in the ring, all of them big names – Stone Cold, Triple H, Goldust, Marc Mero, Owen Hart. Mero slides in and goes for Owen. Goldust knocks Triple H out!

Hunter Hearst Helmsley has been eliminated by Goldust in 6:43.

Not a bad show from our man Trips. Mero and Goldust in one corner, Owen and Austin in another. The timer comes up to tell us someone else is due in as Sable and Marlena look on from outside.

A Seventeenth Challenger Appears: Latin Lover.

Oh poor Latin Lover, who is the final AAA guy to come in and appears when everyone else has left. Poor son of a bitch. He superkicks Owen, which is nice, hits a lovely snapmare on him, sells like a boss for Goldust and Owen is thrown out before skinning the cat. Goldust dodges a Latin Lover dropkick and is eliminated by Owen.

Goldust has been eliminated by Owen Hart in 5:33.

The timer appears as Goldust limps out.

An Eighteenth Challenger Appears: Faarooq Asad.

The NOD music hits and for the third time this PPV, Faarooq appears with some NOD lads. He quickly tosses out Latin Lover.

Latin Lover has been eliminated by Faarooq in 1:47.

And I was there, thinking, wow, Faarooq looks great for a guy who has been running away from Ahmed Johnson for the last half an hour or so, and then out comes Ahmed to a huge pop. Stone Cold rolls out of the ring and Ahmed hits Faarooq with the biggest two-by-four I have ever seen, tossing him over the rope.

Faarooq Asad has been eliminated by Ahmed Johnson in 47 seconds.

Nooooow, this is where the rules begin to get fucky. Earlier, Ahmed jumped over the top rope himself so Faarooq’s interference didn’t cost him the match, his own stupidity did. Here, Ahmed enters the ring, hits Faarooq, who falls out. You could argue that Faarooq was escaping the monster two-by-four but even then, a competitor who had been eliminated was in the ring, interfering with the match. Now what happens here? What are the rules? If the Fed were smart, they would have DQ’d Faarooq as soon as he appeared, or, if they wanted to cause some real heel shit, they could have stopped the match then, restarted it from Faarooq entering, with Stone Cold, Owen and Marc Mero in opposite corners. The match could have restarted, the others could have knocked out Faarooq, big babyface pop and the match could have continued.

Either way, NOD leave and Marc Mero and Owen are eliminated offscreen.

Marc Mero has been eliminated by Stone Cold in 3:53.

Owen Hart has been eliminated by Stone Cold in 8:29.

The timer pops up and once again, Stone Cold is alone in the ring. He calls for the next person.

A Nineteenth Challenger Appears: Savio Vega.

Out comes Flintstones cosplayer Savio and the two men batter lumps out of each other. Savio hits the catapult and a spinning heel kick to the heel Austin. Savio is guillotined and Austin tosses him out.

Savio Vega has been eliminated by Stone Cold in 29 seconds.

Austin is the loneliest man in the ring. He asks for more. More does not arrive instantly.

A Twentieth Challenger Appears: Jesse James.

It’s the Roadie, Jesse James and he jumps in, hits Stone Cold with some lovely right hands, hits the Elvis collars, gets a boot in the gut, is tossed to the apron and knocked off.

Jesse James has been eliminated by Stone Cold in 46 seconds.

Stone Cold for the record fourth time this match, is alone in the middle of the ring. He jaws off to the crowd for a bit, raises his hands and celebrates as only ten men are left. The timer appears and he sits top rope.

A Twenty-First Challenger Appears: Bret Hart.

What a pop! The Hitman walks out and Stone Cold begs for him to enter. Both superstars go at it mid-ring. Bret hits the atomic drop, hits the clothesline, punches Stone Cold in the corner. Austin gets for him to stop, but Bret does not. Bret don’t care. Bret counters an Irish whip and the timer comes up. Who will interrupt this great match?

A Twenty-Second Challenger Appears: Jerry Lawler.

It’s fucking Jerry! He goes in the ring as Stone Cold takes the sharpshooter from Bret. Jerry jumps over the rope, takes two punches and goes back to the announcer’s table.

Jerry Lawler has been eliminated by Bret Hart in 4 seconds.

That’s a short, short, short time. Jerry makes out that he didn’t even remember being in the ring. Great stuff. Bret works over Stone Cold and hits the backbreaker. The timer appears.

A Twenty-Third Challenger Appears: Fake Diesel.

Ohhhh it’s Big Daddy Kane, wearing flared pants and a complete lack of fire. He jogs to the ring, smashes our man Bret on the back of the head and turns to Austin, back to Bret and we are waiting for seven more men as we reach the second midcard point of the night with lots of rest holds, no spots and just running out the clock. Speaking of, there it is!

A Twenty-Fourth Challenger Appears: Terry Funk.

Terry Funk runs out while the clock is still counting down. Eejit. He turns to Austin, jaws off to him, hits him a pair of times and hits the headbutt. The match is split into two pairs, Bret/Diesel and Terry/Austin. They’re all running out the clock and gassed. The timer appears and Terry botches a piledriver.

A Twenty-Fifth Challenger Appears: Rocky Maivia.

Do you smell what the Rock is cooking? No one does. He’s not the Rock yet, he’s still Rocky and he’s battering Kane as Terry gets caught up on the ropes. Terry is almost thrown out as Diesel attacks our boy Rock. Five men in the ring, all of them big names and the timer is here to throw a sixth at us.

A Twenty-Sixth Challenger Appears: Mankind.

Well, business is about to pick up! My legit favourite wrassler rocks to the ring, spinning in circles and looking deranged as fuck. He hammers on Terry and tosses him out, but Terry holds on. Six men in the ring. Austin hits a lovely suplex on Bret and loses a wrist strap. The timer appears as Bret puts on the sleeper that Stone Cold reverses into a stunner.

A Twenty-Seventh Challenger Appears: Flash Funk.

Terry’s evil twin Flash appears! Bret hits the piledriver on Stone Cold! Terry walks in a circle and is hit by Flash! Seven men in the ring, none of them ready to leave! This is a great, great matchup. The timer is here, who is next?

A Twenty-Eighth Challenger Appears: Vader.

The Mastodon! Big Van Vader! Mankind hides his remaining ear. Mankind almost falls out of the ring as Flash hits Vader, the fool. Vader fights back and Austin takes his turn attacking our man V. Eight men: Bret, Rock, Stone Cold, Vader, Flash, Terry, Mankind, Diesel. Who is next? The times appears to tell us.

A Twenty-Ninth Challenger Appears: Henry O. Godwinn.

Oh for fuck’s sake. C’mon, guys, we have Attitude Era Origins in the ring and you bring in Sloppy McComedy-Jobber? Nine men in the ring and it is officially a schmoz with only one man left. There is no structure, they’re just waiting for number thirty so they can do some elimination spots. Hillbilly Jim watches on, happy to get a payday.

The Thirtieth and Final Challenger Appears: The Undertaker.

The lights go out! Ha! It would be so good if the lights went on and there were more people in the ring! Undertaker takes his time getting to the ring and they cut off his music early. He goes in over the top rope, goes for Vader, knocks him down, does the same to Mankind, then Austin, then Vader again. Chokeslam to Austin, chokeslam to Vader, punch to his half-brother Kane-Diesel, he pops Flash Funk’s head into Diesel’s and goes to the Rock, who fights back, bless him. Vader throws Flash Funk out with a lovely fallaway slam.

Flash Funk has been eliminated by Vader in 6:12.

We’re down to nine men now and we need to cut off the chaff so that the wheat can have their big main event spotfest and show the winner. Henry Godwinn is actually hitting Undertaker. Bret hits a lovely Bret’s Rope elbow onto Stone Cold’s head. Sign in the crowd says, “WWF: Wild, Racky Fun!”

Rock is attempting to toss over Bret and the crowd wakes up until Vader comes to Bret’s rescue. Undertaker boots Henry off, but he holds on. What are these men waiting on? They are hanging in the corners, just waiting for the next spot… which isn’t coming any time soon. Undertaker gets Henry Godwin and tosses him off the top rope.

Henry O. Godwinn has been eliminated by The Undertaker in 6:11.

Eight men left and Stone Cold is almost thrown out. Rock is tossed to the corner and Mankind catches him in the Mandible Claw as the rookie attempts a lariat.

Rocky Maivia has been eliminated by Mankind in 13:01.

Seven men remain. Terry Funk and Mankind both go over the top rope but they hold on. Funk attempts to suplex Mankind back into the ring, but Mankind reverses and Funk falls to the floor.

Terry Funk has been eliminated by Mankind in 15:08.

As the camera focusses on Big Daddy Kane punching Bret in the corner, Undertaker boots Mankind off the apron.

Mankind has been eliminated by The Undertaker in 12:20.

Five men left – Kane, Undertaker, Vader, Bret, Stone Cold.

Outside, Mankind and Funk argue with each other. Vader attacks Taker and Austin saves Bret by battering Diesel. Bret grips Austin and tosses him out, but the refs do not see it as Mankind and Funk are distracting them. Austin slides in and eliminates both Taker and Vader in one fell swoop!

Vader has been eliminated by Stone Cold in 10:06.

The Undertaker has been eliminated by Stone Cold in 6:46.

Bret tosses Diesel out!

Fake Diesel has been eliminated by Bret Hart in 17:49.

Stone Cold runs to the ropes and chucks Bret out!

Bret Hart has been eliminated by Stone Cold in 21:42.

Entrant number five, Stone Cold Steve Austin is the winner of the 1997 Royal Rumble in 50:29 after surviving for 45:07.

2017 comments:

Basically a Who’s Who of the Attitude Era, but not a great Rumble overall and there were no spots.

1997 comments:

Who does this Stone Cold boy think he is?

Grade: C

Bret pops back into the ring and argues with the refs as Stone Cold leaves the arena. He goes straight to Vince, shakes him and basically rehearses for the Montreal Screwjob in ten months. It matters not. Stone Cold is going to Wrestlemania 13 to fight the WWF Champion for the WWF Championship. Great stuff, storyline-wise, absolute shite wrestling-wise. JR justifies Austin’s heel move and doesn’t help himself go over as a heel announcer because the crowd love both Austin and Bret.

Big boos from the crowd. Vince introduces the main event: Shawn vs. Sid.

On the Card will return on February 9 2017 with the fourth and final part of Royal Rumble 1997.

Attitude Era #8: Royal Rumble 1997 (Jan 19, 1997) Part 2

Previously on On the Card: My favourite wrestlers and a man who almost killed another man.

Cut to our boy Terry Funk, half-brother of Flash Funk. He cuts a promo.

Backstage, the NOD are there and Jacqueline and a nameless member are harassed for not fighting for Faarooq. He shouts in the camera and calls Ahmed a punk.

Back in the arena, Vader pops down to the ring. Vader is very happy to be here. No one else cares. I like Vader. I used to hate him, but I like him. There is little fanfare, however.

The gong goes, the arena darkens and our man Undertaker takes his slow, laborious stroll to the ring. The crowd sing along with his song! Terrific! I love this! Oh, to be in the crowd then, at the height of Taker’s in-ring prowess! The pop is so big that nothing else can be heard. Brilliant, brilliant stuff. There are no announcers speaking, either, which just adds to the mystique… until Vince fucks it. Lovely shot of the Undertaker on the steel steps where the ring of lights has been dropped so it halos him. Jerry asks if it is a flying saucer. Derp.

Taker has a teardrop tattoo on his cheek. He has killed a man. There is a very odd reason for this match: there is none. No feud. Just… Vader and Undertaker, getting a payday.

Vader def. The Undertaker via pin in 13:19.

Vader and Taker swap blows for a while until Vader makes the mistake of hitting Taker in the back and getting an eyeful for his effort. Taker goes to charge Vader, gets knocked down, sits up instantly and Vader takes over, knocking Taker down again and again only for Taker to sit up. Vader goes to leave but Taker hits him with a double axe handle nothing and lays Vader out on the floor. Vader hits a guillotine stunner off the apron and Vader goes for the back body drop off the ropes but Undertaker leg drops the back of Vader’s head! Taker then body slams Vader! And another leg drop! He’s like a better Cunt Hogan.

Undertaker gets Vader in an armlock, goes for Old School, falls and lands on his balls. Silly Undertaker. But how does a dead man sell a shot to the nuts? Legit question. Vader hits Undertaker between the legs a second time and he sells it.

Cut to Todd Pettengill in the crowd, interviewing a very sweet little girl who saved up her money last summer to follow Shawn Michaels about the place. She babysat to do that. What a girl. Fair play to her. Those sort of stories make me love being a wrestling fan.

Back in the ring, the Undertaker is getting punched by Vader. Both men are gassed and Vader is on Bret’s rope, hitting a lovely, safe Bret’s rope nothing. Pin attempt and a fail. Vader has a wee massage on Taker and the crowd cheer to get Taker to his feet. Big punches from the Deadman and he hits a lovely backdrop onto Vader. Lots of high-lift manoeuvres here from the Deadman. Taker attempts to hit the elbow and fails. Vader, once again, hits Taker in the dick. Vince asks if we will see the Vaderbomb. Vader goes to Bret’s rope and jumps with Taker hitting a huge powerslam. Beautiful. Vader gets the Vader Bomb on Taker, but he kicks out, sits up, hammers on the big man, hits the jumping shoulder barge and goes for the second attempt at Old School. Vader is leaning on the ropes and could shake Taker off, but doesn’t.

Paul Bearer is here! Taker hits Vader with a great chokeslam, but Percy Pringle is looking at him, holding that Urn of his with a sneer. Taker does a lovely backwards-fall out of the ring, punches Paul and is shoved into the ring by Taker. Bearer crawls about, shouts, begs at Taker but is caught in a chokeslam. Vader is back in the ring, kicks Vader, punches Paul, clotheslines Vader out and falls with him. The French Announcer’s table (just replaced) is now the site of an Undertaker jump. Bearer pulls Vader to safety, but Taker has been hurt, hurt by that pesky guardrail!

Both men are taking their time and Paul smacks Taker on the back of the head with the urn, kisses it and sneers off. What a man. RIP in peace. Vader goes for the Vader Bomb slash Vader Drop slash fall, goes for the pin and takes Taker out in 13:19.

2017 comments:

Good match, just the right length, shame there was a lot of sitting around.

1997 comments:

God damn, but Vader got out of the ring quickly, didn’t he?

Grade: B

Vader escapes with Paul as his music hits. Undertaker is up, stares at the ref, as if to say, “Did you just let that happen, bro?” He then chokeslams the ref. Poor ref was hospitalised by Vader as well. He can’t get a break. Taker is angry, gosh, he is mad as hell. He starts tossing up chairs, shouting, throwing things, points at Vince, acts like it’s a screwjob of some kind. We see replays of the urn shot, the Vader Bomb/Drop and Taker shouts at the camera as he leaves.

Before he leaves, though, Jerry drops an absolute cracker: “That was a hard urn’d victory.” Actually amazing.

Cut to Stone Cold jawing off to the camera, telling them that he will not speaking until he goes through twenty-nine other pieces of trash.

Cut to the British Bulldog, who says he is amazing. And he is.

Back in the arena, no-entrance Jerry Estrada, Heavy Metal and Fuerza get ready for their match with Hector Garza, Perro Aguayo and Canek! The from AAA are ready to show these damned Americans who is the best Mexican.

Hector Garza, Perro Aguayo and Canek def. Jerry Estrada, Heavy Metal and Fuerza by pin in 10:56.

I don’t know much about these guys, so it’s going to be hard for me to tell you who does what. We have Estrada apparently starting off with Garza. Screw it, I’ll call them by their pants. We have yellow and black “Bee pants” vs. “Zebra pants”. JR says that these guys sometimes throw the rules out the window. Jerry says, “Like me!” and Vince replies with, “Yeah, but they’re atheletes.” Perro comes in, black pants and beats on star pants for a while. Lots of fast movements, here, stoppig and showboating. A lovely back body drop and star pants does bananas. The two luchas, red pants and singlet, run the ropes with a lovely hip toss, nice lariat.

JR explains the Lucha wrestlers. There is a missed senton and bee pants and zebra pants face off. Lots of backflips from zebra pants and a springboard back elbow followed by a lovely top-rope arm drag and a tiltawhirl backbreaker, second rope backflip and the two men shake hands before tagging out. Very nice. Red pants and star pants come in, do a test of strength and the two men do some lovely arm-drag-takedowns and dropkicks. A roll up gets nothing and singlet is in versus black pants. Lots of kicks from singlet until black pants knocks him down. Lovely arm drag takedown and black pants attempts a baseball slide, flying through the first and second ropes before tagging in bee pants and red pants.

Figure four attempt and zebra pants is in, dragging bee pants about with a lovely jumping clothesline and an STF. Zebra works on bee pants, tagging in black pants, who works bee pants legs over. Fallaway slam followed by a senton splash. Bee pants reaches for the tag but gets naught. Red pants is back in and bee pants dodges a spinning heel kick and is attacked by his own teammate by mistake. A tiny schmoz takes place and red pants lifts star pants up for the gorilla press. Zebra pants hits a jump to the outside and inside bee pants is press slammed by red pants, double stomp to the chest and the pin in 10:56.

2017 comments:

Fun match, but very disorganised with every man trying to get as many spots over as possible.

1997 comments:

Will we see these men again?

Grade: B

Vince tells us that we have the Royal Rumble match and the WWF Championship match to look forward to. There’s a promo for In Your House 13.

On the Card will return on February 2 2017 with the third part of Royal Rumble 1997.

Attitude Era #8: Royal Rumble 1997 (Jan 19, 1997) Part 1

In the previous entry, I looked at In Your House 12: It’s Time 1996. It was okay. The next PPV was the 1997 Royal Rumble, which was the tenth of its name.

Over the next few weeks, I will review this PPV from the perspectives of a fan looking back at it after two decades as well as my original thoughts as a teenager watching it at the time (though this particular PPV was one I watched in 1998 as my family did not have the channels necessary to watch wrasslin’).

WWF Royal Rumble 1997

No More Mr. Nice Guy!

The poster shows Shawn Michaels staring deep into the camera, foreshadowing his potential heel turn and eventual rise to evil.

The Big Red WWF title screen goes straight a promo about Shawn Michaels being cocky and flamboyant. It shows his win over Bret Hart, his loss against Sid and now the rematch tonight in San Antonio. Cut to some of the worst CGI ever as Starburst Fruit Twists present The Royal Rumble 1997!

Big pyro in the arena and a disembodied hand picks up a hat offscreen. Vince tears his throat out welcoming us there and what a welcome it is. Vinnie O’Mac, Jumpin’ Jim Ross and Jerry “The King” Lawler are in the Alamodome, San Antonio, Texas. 60,477 in attendance with 244,000 PPV buys at home.

Jim Ross tells us that there are no words to show how they feel. Jerry tells us that Shawn and Sid must put up or shut up.  Our Spanish Colleagues are Hugo Savinovich, Carlos Cabrera and Arturo Rivera, who shout over Vince’s introduction and dance. We have the French Announcers, Ray Rougeau and Jacques Rougeau Sr who do the same.

(Note: Before the PPV began, there was a 30-minute show called Free-For-All, which was the nineties equivalent of the Preshow, full of promos and summaries of recent TV matches. There was a number of exclusive matches on Free-For-All which saw Mascarita Sagrada Jr. and La Parkita defeating Mini Mankind and Mini Vader in a small person’s wrestling match. Before that, we had two dark matches: Perro Aguayo Jr and Venum defeating Maniaco and Mosco de la Merced; Octagón, Blue Demon Jr. and Tinieblas Jr. defeating Heavy Metal, Abismo Negro and Histeria. The reason that those names are Spanish and you’ve probably never heard of most of them is because it was a deal made with AAA to include their wrestlers in the Royal Rumble, which is why Mil Máscaras, Perroth and Cibernético appear in the Royal Rumble match.)

Down comes my boy Goldust, the challenger for the Intercontinental Championship. Goldust looks fantastic as usual and I have missed him over these last weeks. Vince tells us that Goldust has become a fan favourite all over the world and with good reason because he’s fucking brilliant.

Cut to the Intercuntinental champion, Hunter Hearst Helmsley, who believes that all women love him. Goldust, on the other hand, is a bit mental. Jerry called Goldust a censored word and Goldust denied that fact.

Straight-up Shoot Fact: On the December 16th 1996 RAW, Goldie interrupted a scrap between Triple H and Jerry where the pair of them beat on Wildman Marc Mero. He fought Trips, saved Mero and returned to the ring to speak to Jerry, where The King asked him, “Are you? You are… you know…” and skirted around the issues. Vince tried to cut the feed before Jerry doubles down, calling Goldust a freak before finally asking if he was, “queer”. Goldust says, “nooooooo,” and punches Jerry out. Twenty years have passed since that fateful night when being gay was derogatory and worthy of heeldom. Le sigh.)

Trips tried to steal Marlena and he fought back. The announcer asks if they’re all just playing miiiiiiiiind games or not.

Ode To Joy plays and out comes Teeeeeeriple H and Mr. Hughes. Goldust wastes no time in getting to Trips and running down the ramp to find him.

Intercontinental Championship match: Hunter Hearst Helmsley (c) (w/ Mr. Hughes) def Goldust (w/ Marlena) via pin in 16:50.

In the ring, Goldust is in control. Someone in the crowd has a “FLAIR GOD” sign as the announcers consider whether or not Curtis Hughes has a butling license to allow him to butle for Trips. HHH is thrown out of the ring and the pair waste a wee bit of time there. Lovely atmoic drop by Trips on Goldust. Trips goes for the Pedigree but Goldust reverses and catapults Trips out of the ring. Goldust removes the steel ring steps, drops it on Trips and is DQ…

Wait, no, Earl Hebner doesn’t DQ Goldust for some unknown reason. Trips Flair flops onto the steel steps to a big cheer from the crowd. Trips guillotines Goldust and the pair brawl in the ring leading to a pin attempt. Goldust roars and Trips hides behind Earl, getting in a cheap shot. Lovely look at Marlena and the crowd go bananas for her. Trips hits a double axe handle nothing off the top rope to outside as Hughes jaws off to Earl. Trips throws Goldust into the ring post and is about to toss him into the crowd but Goldust dodges. Once again, however, he uses the steel steps as a weapon. Why, Goldust, why?

Goldust beats on the knee of Triple H and loses his power as Goldust takes over, forcing the two men to have a little lie down. The crowd begin to die. Another shot of Marlena and the crowd come alive once more. This is the beginning of the Attitude Era: where the wrestling is crap and only the boobs matter. Goldust hits the figure four leglock, with Earl dropping for a couple of quick pin attempts. Goldust pulls on the ropes and Earl doesn’t break the submission instantly! Whaaaat.

Goldust followed Trips outside and knocks him down. Goldust batters Hunter’s head off the apron and feels himself up in ring. Once again, for the third time, Goldust uses the steel steps as a way to hurt Trips. JR really slags off Earl, saying that he has a bad attitude and that he is due to be down for the Championship match later in the evening and that if his attitude says the same, it will work in Sid’s favour. Goldust runs the ropes and attempts a crossbody, which Trips dodges, launching Goldust outside. Trips throws Goldie into the guardrail and JR gives off about breaking of the rules. I wonder if that is kayfabe or not. Trips does a lovely wee courtesy and gets boos. Outside the ring, both men have a wee sit. Trips takes Marlena’s golden chair and finally Earl Hebner decides to be a referee and stops it.

Cut to Todd Pettengill in the crowd with Collin Raye, an apparent country and western singer. I tell you what, Todd is rocking that goatee, hey. Fair play til ye. Todd makes Collin sing and then cuts him off. In the ring, nothing of note happens except that Trips hurts his knee. Lovely jumping clothesline from Goldust and the new face hammers the canvas in a Sable-embarrassingly good time. Lovely back body drop and he goes high on the ropes. Trips pushes Earl into the ropes and Goldust falls on his balls. Trips goes for the superplex but fails. Goldust goes for the big elbow and fails. Hughes sends Trips the Intercontinental belt and the heel takes time to snog Marlena, allowing Goldust to fight him off, steal the belt and wallop Trips in the face. The champ is down! Pin him! It’s a one, two… and Mr. Hughes drags Trips out. As Goldust is arguing, Trips sneaks around, hits a lovely clothesline, the Pedigree and the win in a very slow count in 16:50.

2017 comments:

An actually good curtain jerker, but it might be because of Goldust more than anything else.

1997 comments:

Oh Marlena, you’re to blame for this, somehow.

Grade: A

I love Goldust and I like Trips at this time when he had something to prove and tried his hardest.

Cut to Bret, who cuts a promo on how he’s always been a marked man and how he is at the bottom of the barrel and can’t go back farther. Nice.

Cut to Mankind, rocking back and forth in his Boiler Room, rambling incoherently.

Back in the arena and the motherfucking Nation of Domination come out. Wolfie D and JC Ice rap on the way to the ring. Old Immigration Clarence Mason arrive along with Crush and D’Lo Brown and every other black man that the Fed could find. Jacqueline is there, too! Isn’t that great? And, of course, the main man is Faarooq. They all throw up the fists and one of the guys in the front misses his cue. Silly NOD.

Promo for this black on black feud. Ahmed Johnson stumbles his way through words that no one understands as we see him win the New Sensation award at the 1996 Slammy Awards, he is the first ever Kuwait National Champion, Intercontinental Champion and had a legitimate kidney injury. Faarooq replied to Ahmed by forming the NOD, dropping Sunny, who was his manager when he was wearing that dumb gladiator outfit. Vader was involved as well because all heels hate together.

Out comes the Pearl River Plunge himself, over three hundred pounds of steroid-fuelled insanity. He sprints to the ring and tackles Faarooq, starting the match.

Ahmed Johnson def Faarooq (w/ the Nation of Domination) via DQ in 8:48.

Ahmed has a full head of steam on him as he batters into Faarooq mercilessly, throwing Faarooq from one corner to another. This is your basic babyface beatdown where the heel has no offence for the first few minutes. Faarooq tries to leave (because he is a coward, you see) and fails as Ahmed catches up with him. JR calls the NOD a “pack of dogs,” as Ahmed rips off Faarooq’s trousers. Faarooq has a belt and attempts to use it but it is taken from him. Ahmed hits the flying shoulder block and… Ahmed, who is a face, gets a belt and whips at Faarooq. What the fuck, rules? Is this the Royal Rumble or the… Rule… Rumble?

I tried.

Ahmed throws Faarooq into the old steel ring steps and gets covered in Goldust. There’s a mixup as one of the NOD gets pushed into Ahmed, sacrificed so that Faarooq may win. Faarooq sets up the steel chair and drops Ahmed on it. Faarooq then hits Ahmed with a chair.

Fuck sake, boys. Are there any rules at all in this fucking match? Christ of almighty.

Ahmed has a lie down for a while as Faarooq speaks to the crowd. Faarooq puts Ahmed on the turnbuckle and listens to the ref’s rules regarding holds on the ropes, jaws off to fat white men in the crowd and there is a lack of action as Faarooq wonders how to damage Ahemd more. He hits the camel clutch, breaks back, makes humble. He hits the arse-sit on Ahmed’s back and returns to camel clutching, breaking back, making humble. Ahmed lifts Faarooq up in the electric chair drop, falls back and Faarooq is the first one up, jumping off the top rope to be caught by Ahmed in a great powerslam. Faarooq catches Ahmed in mid-air and hits the spinebuster. Faarooq tells the crowd, as he has during this match, that he is baddest man. Ahmed is up, hits the spinebuster, Crush pops in and despite none of the Nod hitting any sort of offence, the bell is rung and a DQ is called in 8:48.

2017 comments:

Awful.

1997 comments:

Is this racism? I wouldn’t know. We don’t have white people in Ireland.

Grade: D

Ahmed is attempting to leave but moves after an NOD member who attacks him, battering him against the steel steps, moving them to the French announcer’s table, lifts the poor guy up for the Pearl River Plunge, botches it and the son of a bitch has to flip mid-air to land relatively safely. Ahmed doesn’t bother to remove the monitors before throwing him through. A replacement table is on its way. The poor NOD member seems to have his head hit by a monitor. God damn.

On the Card will return on January 26 2017 with the second part of Royal Rumble 1997.