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: 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.

Attitude Era #6. Survivor Series (November 17, 1996) Part 2

Previously on On the Card: One amazing opening match.

Cut to the “bowels of the building” where Kevin Kelly is there to interview Mankind and Paul Bearer. Kelly tells them that Paul has to be raised above the ring in a cage. Paul claims that he is no animal. Mankind screeches out some threats to the Undertaker in the form of cannibalism.

Back in the arena, the cage is ready for Paul to enter. Mankind’s music plays and Paul comes out, claiming that he is not going into a cage, but we all know he will. He bumps into a cameraman and shouts at him for some time. Cheeky rascal. Paul gives Mankind the urn and the pair of them rock and screech mid-ring. JR reminds us that it has only been six years since Undertaker arrived in the WWF. The announcers wonder if Paul will fit into the cage.

The bells toll and the arena dips into darkness as the Undertaker descends from above with huge bat-like wings. As he lands, the spotlight on him disappear and some men get him out of his harness. When he reappears in the blue light, we see he has a teardrop tattoo on his cheek. The Undertaker has killed a man, it seems, and done hard time for it. JR comments on Taker’s ring attire. It’s very leather.

Paul is finally in the cage and as the bell rings, Mankind sneaks from behind and shoves Undertaker’s head into the metal bars of the cage. Bastard.

Paul Bearer in a cage match: The Undertaker def. Mankind via pin in 14:52.

Camera from within the cage – CAGECAM – shows Paul. We can hear him screech from within. Mankind and Taker beat on each other outside of the ring before rolling back in. Taker throws Mankind into the corner with ruthless abandon and follows it up with a drop-toe-hold, something that JR tells us he has never done before. Taker gets Mankind into an armbar in an attempt to hyperextend the elbow. He gives up, stomps Mankind’s right hand – his claw hand – and rolls outside to continue the battering. JR considers that Mankind’s hand is broken.

Undertaker goes for a big elbow and Mankind moves. He knocks Undertaker outside, but the Deadman lands on his feet. The fight spills into the fans. We have an idiot with an ECW shirt on. Fool. The men go back into the ring. Another shot from the cagecam featuring Paul Bearer. Mankind does a wee senton onto the standing Undertaker from the apron. JR considers that Mankind’s hand might well never function again. The boys are courting disaster being in the ring with Bearer suspended above them. Mankind flings Taker into the corner and Vince asks us to kindly forget about it. Another throw into the corner and Taker springs off it to hit the elbow. Mankind attempts to escape and fails. Taker actually bites Mankind’s fingers, becoming a cannibal in the interim. Taker gives Mankind the Irish whip, ducks for a slam and Mankind gives him a brutal piledriver.

Mankind calls for the claw but Undertaker refutes him, getting him into the chokeslam. The crowd ask them to “Rest in Peace!” Mankind escapes the chokeslam and is put into the Tombstone position. He escapes from this and gets Mankind in the Mandible Claw. Mankind is thrown into the barricade and JR tells us that Mankind wears no helmet. Undertaker goes for Old School and some smart cunt in the crowd hits the airhorn as the crowd hit a revival of the “Rest in Peace!” chant. Mankind goes to the top rope and Taker sits up – always a bad move when a big man goes aerial. Taker tries fight Mankind off, but is thrown to the mat. As Mick hits the double-axe-handle-nothing, Mark reverses it into a chokeslam which is reversed into a Mandible Claw and we have a lovely lie down from the lads. Vince says, “Progress is totally halted!”

My favourite spot comes up as the ref holds Undertaker’s hand aloft and drops it thrice. On the third drop, Taker holds tight and reverses the Claw into a chokeslam. JR tells us that Mankind’s hand is surely damaged. Mankind hits another senton but Taker dodges it. He rolls Mankind into the ring and gets the madman on the ropes. A reversed Irish Whip into a sleeper into a backdrop. Mankind pulls a shiv out of his trunks and hits Taker with it. The official sees naught. Paul Bearer shakes the cage – be careful, Paul, you could kill every man in the building if you fall. Mankind on Taker’s back in the corner and Taker turns it into a Tombstone Piledriver, pinning Mankind mid-ring for the win and Paul’s soul in 14:52.

2016 comments:

Good match. Shoot, that makes two matches in a row! What is this? The Attitude Era? Must be… oh wait, that’s not due to start for another year… oh well.

1996 comments:

I am so scared for Paul Bearer.

Grade: A-

Paul is lowered to the ring and Taker removes his prize. With Taker now being an ex-con, we can only imagine the horrors he has ready for Paul Bearer in the-

Oh wait, what the fuck? It’s the Executioner, Terry Gordy! Out he runs to defend Paul Bearer’s honour! Executioner beats on Taker mercilessly. Taker fights back and Exectutioner escapes with Paul and Mankind. Undertaker never got a chance to get his hands on Bearer. Rascally. Undertaker paces in the ring and we see some replays of the Tombstone Piledriver as Taker takes a knee in the blue ring.

Cut to backstage and the WWF is on AOL! Doug Furnas and Phil Lafon have two people with lanyards and the biggest laptops I have ever seen. They look very uncomfortable.

Back in the ring, Sunny runs down to the announcer’s desk, shaking herself with reckless abandon. Nice wee wave to our man Howard Finkel. Vince dances with Sunny and we cut to Dok Hendrix in the back with Crush, Jerry “The King” Lawler, Intercontinental Champion Trrrrrrrriple H and our boy Goldust with Marlena. Goldust plays with Hunter’s hair. Trips and Jerry both cut promos on Marc Henry. Crush and Goldust say about three lines. The music hits as Crush arrives to the ring, all dreadlocks and goatee, followed by The King, who shouts at the crowd and tells them to shut up. Goldust arrives with the letterbox screen. JR complains that Goldust was… “short” with him. Sunny complains that Triple H has the gold… but lost his valet. Sunny calls JR chubby.

Sable’s music hits and out she comes… with her husband, Wildman Marc Mero. No one pays attention to Mero. His Roman candles hit as Mrs. Future Lesnar claps politely. Sunny makes an implant joke. Out comes The… Stalker? Barry Windham? The member of the Four Horsemen? Some weird music hits and Rocky Maivia comes out. Who is this new man? Who is this- Oh, we all know who The Man Who Would Be The Rock is. Let’s not lie about it. He recently did a Rock Reacts video on this, his debut, and I will slip his reactions and points in with the review. He has a mop of curly hair. He looks like a Flintstones reject and he doesn’t know where the hard cam is. He thinks its behind him, so we’ll see him back a lot. The Rock looks amazing.

Mero is on the mic and hyping up the crown with his mental mullet. He introduces our man Jake Roberts, who walks out with Revelations his huge python. The size of his snake! He can barely lift it over his head, by God!

Wee shot of MSG on the outside as we get set up mid-ring.

Survivor Series Tag Team Match: Rocky Maivia, Jake Roberts, The Stalker and Marc Mero (w/ Sable) def. Crush, Jerry Lawler, Hunter Hearst Helmsley and Goldust (w/ Marlena) via elimination in 23:44.

The faces chase the heels out of the ring and Mero is due to start with Jerry. The two men are about to fight until the audience chant, “Burger King!” to The King. The Stalker gets tagged in and Jerry tags out, pulling in Trips. Mero goes after him and the blueblood rolls outside, desperate to get his title back.

Straight-up Shoot Fact: Mero’s debut was at WrestleMania XII when Sable was his Valet. After a loss to a no-selling Ultimate Warrior, Trips beat on Sable mercilessly until her husband came out and saved her. Trips and Mero have a storied past, it seems.

Goldust slides in and the two married men with their wives outside beat on each other mid-ring. Lovely hip toss from Mero followed by a great back body drop. Goldust is being thrown about like a ragdoll. Attempted pin as Sunny rips on Sable and praises Marlena. The Stalker comes in and whips Goldust about until HHH is tagged in. They go for the test of strength and Mero is tagged in as Trips tags out. Crush pops in with his white-boy dreads and forehead tattoo. Rocky is tagged in and the “powerhouse” as Vince described him is thrown into the corner where The King legit cracks him a few times, shoulder barges him down and Rocky just pops right up. So sexy. Double jumps and a dropkick as King falls out of the ring, retreating from fear.

Vince then drops that Dwayne Johnson is taking the name of his father and grandfather. Alright.

Trips and Rock are in the ring and we see a foreshadowing of main events of future past. Goldust comes in after Trips hits a great suplex and hits an elbow. Cover attempt and Rock survives. Lovely drop on the top rope and Crush is in with a ribbreaker. Lovely slap to Rock’s face followed by a body slam and The King is back in, being an arse. Trips is tagged in and batters Rock in the corner. The two men share some sloppy punches with Rock lifting Trips for a back body drop, calling in Jake the Snake, who clears house. Another back body drop and Jake calls for the DDT but Hunter fights back. Mero jumps in to protect his friend but Goldust is taking over. Jerry is in now, a sequel to their matches earlier. Jake is sloppy on his feet and Lawler insinuates that he is drunk. Jake hits Lawler with the DDT and eliminates King with a pin.

Jerry “The King” Lawler has been eliminated by Jake “The Snake” Roberts in 10:01.

Goldust is in and taking over where Jerry failed. Goldie holds Jake in a sleeper hold for some time as The Stalker hammers his feet on the apron. Jake escapes and tags Barry who attacks Goldust with a brutal Irish Whip and great suplex. Harvey Whippleman is outside. Great lad. Goldust goes for the double-axe-handle nothing, gets a punch to the gut as he lands and hits a great flip. Crush kidney-punches The Stalker and gets a curtain call for the pin. The bell doesn’t even ring.

The Stalker has been eliminated by Goldust in 12:44.

Mero is in, kicking his husband-brother in the face. Goldust replies with a kick of his own and Hunter is tagged in to take over. Mero is beaten in the corner and Sable hits a terrible beat on the apron. 4/4 timing, Sable, for Christ’s sake. Trips hits an awful knee drop, missing Mero by a good half a foot. Crush is tagged in and gives Mero a bearhug as he walks him around the ring. A pair of rib breakers followed by a leg drop but Mero kicks out. Goldust comes in, hits Mero with a great shoulder barge and barely gets the pin. Crush comes back in and attempts the cover but Mero is still kicking out. Someone is battering the steps. Who is it? Some cunt.

Trips has Mero in the abdominal stretch and holds it forever as Sable attempts her beat but fails once again. Give it up, Sable, you’re never going to be a musician. Abdominal stretch city over here. Mero finally escapes, hits the sunset flip and Trips aloha-Arns it forever before finally tagging in Goldust. Goldust quickly tags out and Trips is back in, getting a spinning head scissors for his effort. Mero falls out of the ring, jumps to the top rope and hits the Merosault – a moonsault from the top rope – for the pin.

Hunter Hearst Helmsley has been eliminated by Wildman Marc Mero in 19:20.

Crush is in now, headbutting Mero, attempting a gorilla press, forgetting it and taking a dropkick from Mero. Mero attempts a senton suicide dive but hits the floor instead. In the ring, Wildman takes another headbutt and Jack comes in to save him-

Oh. Wait, what? It seems Wildman was actually eliminated. Huh.

Wildman Marc Mero has been eliminated by Crush in 20:36.

That was pathetic. Obviously the lads are running over time then because that’s two eliminations in just over a minute.

Jake is in with Crush and is hit with a brutal throat shot, the “Heart Punch”.

Jake “The Snake” Roberts has been eliminated by Crush in 20:54.

Rocky is on his own. He looks back to his corner and finds it wanting. He looks to Crush and Goldust. He’s fucked. The crowd legit starts chanting his name. For real. This is his debut match and the crowd are chanting The Rock’s name. Crush goes for the test of strength. The kids shout, “No!” yet he does it anyway. Rock goes for a small package and fails, hitting a body slam, beating on Goldust, getting some babyface fire. A double Irish whip followed by a crossbody on both heels. Rocky is pounding it stacks but Crush is taking over. Both heels are mid-ring and Crush attempts a heart punch, receiving a crossbody for his effort followed by a pin.

Crush has been eliminated by Rocky Maivia in 23:12.

It’s now Rocky and Goldust! Two of my favourite wrestlers!

Straight-up Shoot Fact: When The Rock pinned Crush, he hid his face and thanked him for it. So sweet.

Goldust takes a punch from Rock, fights back and Rocky hits his running shoulderbreaker, his original finisher, getting the pin and the win in 23:44.

Goldust has been eliminated by Rocky Maivia. The survivor is Rocky Maivia!

2016 comments:

Good debut from our man The Rock. The fact that this newcomer started in MSG, on Survivor Series, won his first match and eliminated two people in less than a minute is nothing short of prophetic. I don’t always like The Rock, especially later when his main events versus Trips were boring as all hell, but he pulls out all the stops here tonight. Fair play.

1996 comments:

I don’t like that Rocky lad. He looks like a Samoan Hogan. Samogan.

Grade: A

Three great matches in a row? Truly this is the end times.

Rocky is looking at the entrance, where he believes the hard cam is. It isn’t. He’s a damn fool. Why doesn’t the ref tell him? Sunny says she’s proud of Rocky and hasn’t even had the chance to seduce him yet. What the fuck?

On the Card will return on December 1 with the third part of Survivor Series 1996.

Attitude Era #5. In Your House 11: Buried Alive (October 20, 1996) Part 3

Previously on On the Card: Owen Hart and an English person beat two cattle rustlers.

Mr. Perfect’s fucking amazing song hits and down he comes with JR, walks around to the announce desk and puts on JR’s mic.

Goldust’s music hits and every bounty hunter in a six mile radius jumps up. Goldust comes! Gold dust falls from the ceiling! Letterbox and low FPS, Marlena and cigars. Mr. Perfect’s mic is, predictably, prefect.

Cut to the backstage and Intercontinental Champion Wildman Marc Mero is there with Mrs. Lesnar, Sable. Jerry shouts at him and the crowd pops for Sable. It’s embarrassing that a man of such talent (Mero) is in the shadow of a woman with only two talents (Sable), both of them artificial. A weird pyro goes off behind Mero. Jerry checks the success of Mero due to Sable. Shame.

WWF Intercontinental Championship match: Wildman Marc Mero (c) (w/ Sable) def. Goldust (w/ Marlena) via pinfall in 11:38.

The bell rings and Mero and Goldust square off. Mr. Perfect threatens both Austin and Hunter. Goldust tries to touch Mero and Mero fights back, upset at the potential homosexuality in Goldust. Wildman is all over Goldust, lots of lovely chain wrestling. Jerry and Vince compare Marlena and Sable like the perverts that they are. Mero and Goldust beat on each other in the corner. Vince explains that Faarooq was supposed to fight Mero but got injured and that Mero was “training” for a fight with him before the old switcheroo. Don’t know how you train for one wrestler in such a short period of time that means that you can’t just use the same tactics with another, similar wrestler. It’s not like he thought he’s be fighting Undertaker and got Matt Hardy instead, right?

Goldust spits on Mero and the Wildman replies to the critic’s “histrionics”, as Vince puts them, with a spinebuster and ground n’ pound. And the crowd goes wild. Dodgy head scissors and Goldust gets a huge slam followed by a senton suicide dive. Vince tells us to forget about it. Mero hits the slingshot leg drop on Goldust. Mero goes to the top rope and Goldust hits a super-backdrop-powerbomb combo. Outside, Mero’s head bounces on the steel steps. Jerry claims that Perfect cares less about Mero than Sable. Rest hold city in the ring.

Mero gets to his feet, fights back and Goldust takes over again. Sable starts her god-damned bad timekeeping, battering the mat with an awful 4/4 beat. Jerry makes fun of Sable’s lips and Mero gets hit with a clothesline. Vince asks us to forget about it. Goldust gets the mic and tells the crowd to shut the hell up and by God, they explode. He then threatens to sexually assault the crowd – “I’m going to stick my tongue down each end every one of your throats.” Jerry says that the Fed has a “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy. Mid-90’s latent homophobia, everyone!

Mero hits a lovely moonsault but only gets a two. Goldust attempts the Final Curtain but Mero escapes it and is launches outside the ring. The two fans that HHH and Austin were roaring at earlier lean down and start touching Mero. Mr. Perfect goes off mic to help Mero and Trips turns up to confront him. Goldust goes to smack Perfect, who retaliates. Perfect follows Trips down the aisle and Wildman hits a Samoan Drop followed by a Shooting Star Press for the win in 11:38.

2016 comments:

Just like the first match, a potentially good match that is poisoned by Mr. Perfect taking interest away from the competitors. It’s not his fault. He’s just too good for everyone else.

1996 comments:

Not enough somersaults.

Grade: A-

Cut to a promo for the next match – Sycho Sid vs. Vader. It is the apparent Battle of the Powerbombs and we see the pair of them using powerbombs on different lads. Sid is taller and whisperier but Vader is heavier and has Corny on his side. Shawn is asked and the champ replies that both knocked him out, so they’re equally effective.

Cut to the ring and Sid’s mental Psycho-like song hits. Out he comes, Brock Samson himself, a man who is more charisma than cranium. The Sycho gets a monster pop. I know a lot of people slag Sid and fair play to them, because he isn’t the best, but I love him. I just think he’s tip top.

Vader asks what time it is. It is, of course, Vader time. Down he comes, the lovely man called Vader. I love Vader. I used to hate him, but now I love him. Jim Cornette is there, too, getting his payday any way he can.

Shawn’s music hits and… there is a tiny pop. I expected more. I think the crowd don’t really believe that he’s there, but he is, “the most charismatic WWF champion of all time” according to Vince. Shawn goes to Sid, shakes his hands, goes to Corny, steals his tissue, wipes his nose and throws it down. As Corny goes to pick it up, Shawn boots him up the arse and scarpers out of the ring. The match begins in earnest.

WWF Championship #1 Contender match: Sycho Sid def. Vader (w/ Jim Cornette) via pinfall in 8 minutes exactly.

The winner of this match gets to face off against Shawn at Survivor Series, so there is a lot riding on this for both men. They start punching in the middle and Sid takes over quickly with a huge leg drop that damn near takes off Vader’s head. Shawn is on commentary, high as a kite and having a great time. Vader batters Sid around the head for a while and takes him down with a shot to the neck. Irish Referee Tim White isn’t happy about that. Vader splashes Sid and Vince tells us to forget about it.

Sid is taking his time on the outside and as Vader and Irish Referee Tim White have a chat, Jim Cornette sneaks over and slaps Sid with a tennis racket. Jerry mentions Jake the Snake for some reason. Sid is on the apron and hits vader with a lovely sunset flip. Vader just sits on him. Vader hits Sid with a big clothesline and Sid replies with a backdrop. Norny is getting a brilliant beat going there, far better than Sable, anyways. Vader reverses an Irish whip, hits the big boot twice and Vince tells us we should forget about that. Sid attempts a flying lariat, which we knew would be a bad idea because he never does high-flying moves, and is caught in mid-air by Vader and body-slammed for his efforts. A big splash and Vader gets a close two-count.

Vader gets ready to drag him over for a confusingly named Vader Bomb (which is not a powerbomb) and Vince, once again, tells us not to remember it. Vader, however, lifts Side up after the pin. As Vader goes for another Vader Bomb, Sid lifts his knees, gives him a body slam and goes to powerbomb Vader, but Corny is sneaking in. Sid quickly runs to the ropes and tugs them upwards as Corny is entering, catching him just on his bollocks. Sid returns to Vader but as Irish Referee Tim White is attending to Corny’s bruised balls, Vader hits the low blow. Vader is in control! What is going to happen. He gets Sid into a powerbomb position but is unable to lift him and so punches Sid, Irish whips him and Sid retaliates with a very quick chokeslam and pin in eight of your Earth minutes.

2016 comments:

Obviously both men were being very polite with this. Sid, although a great showman, is not a fantastic wrestler and his moves smacked of SuperCena-style simplicity. The fact we didn’t see a powerbomb was upsetting as well. Oh well, friend vs. friend for Survivor Series and an eventual heel-turn on the cards, so that’s nice.

1996 comments:

Wait… a Vader Bomb isn’t a powerbomb? Then what’s a powerbomb called? I get that the slingshot splash is a bomb, but couldn’t they call it something else? A Vader Drop? A Vader Splash? A Vader Splat?

Grade: C

Michaels enters the ring behind Sid and the pair have a wee laugh with one another. Sid starts to point at his head and shout. They shake hands and the Pyro of Friendship hits above them.

Cut to promo for Survivor Series in New York on November 17th. Usual shite about New York: all the shots are sped up so the cars and people are just trails of light, blah de blah. The shot of Times Square has Sid on the big screen, though. We see Canuck Bret Hart lace his boots and pop on his protective eyewear, ready for the year’s anniversary that is the Montreal Screwjob. Another shot of Times Square with Shawn in the screen this time. We see a bunch of wrestlers hit each other when the announcer says, “we know these guys will survive the Big Apple, but will they survive the EEF Survivor Series weekend?” this statement is followed by a long shot of the Twin Towers. Ouch.

Back in arena with Dok Hendrix speaking to Sid and JR comes on to shout at Sid. JR asks simple questions to make Sid look like he’s about to take a heel turn. Sid, even with this railroad in front of him, forgets his lines and walks away, ashamed. Dok looks at the camera and says, “No Microphone problem then!” In the distance, a single, solitary trumpet plays a wah-wah-waaaaah as he shrugs into the camera.

Back at the announcer’s desk and Vince and Jerry stumble through the lines. Jerry actually praises JR, clearly remembering that JR is attempting to be a heel. We have lights on the buried alive mound.

On the Card will return on November 10 with the fourth and final part of In Your House 11: Buried Alive.

Attitude Era #4. In Your House 10: Mind Games (Sept 22, 1996) Part 3

Previously on On the Card: We saw Owen Hart wrestle. Glorious.

Cut to Kevin Kelly backstage in the boiler room with Mankind and Paul Bearer. Bearer is brilliant, shrill and eeeeeevil. Bearer blames everyone for his betrayal. Mankind hugs the urn and tells everyone that he lives so that others may feel his pain. His destiny is to win tonight, reportedly. He does tell us to have a nice day, however.

Back in the ring, Jerry “The King” Lawler comes out to verbally abuse the crowd for a while. That’s not like you, Jerry! In the middle of the slagging, it cuts to Superstars earlier and Free-For-All when Jerry pours water on Mark Henry and slaps him. We can’t hear Jerry shout, though he does ask, of the Olympics, “If one synchronised swimmer drowns, do they all drown?” In the middle of his rant, music hits and out comes “The World’s Strongest Man” Mark Henry. He’s wearing a USA singlet, throws his XXXL jacket into the crowd and Jerry is still slagging him. Jerry, listen, Henry is 400 pounds. You can’t lift him.

Mark Henry def. Jerry “The King” Lawler via submission in 5:13.

So, once again, we have a match where the winner is obvious. Will the wrestling legend win or the young upstart who did not compete in the Olympics? Either way, it is not a strong win because the opponents are not equals.

Jerry knows all about mind games, according to Vince. The King walks about the ring and USA chants rise for Henry. They lock up and King keeps him in a headlock. Henry reverses it to a hammerlock and pushes Jerry down. JR states, quite correctly, that Mark Henry does not need to do anything fancy. Just overpower Jerry. Do what you are booked to do. Mark gets Jerry in a headlock and it’s the King’s turn to reverse into a hammerlock. Henry reverses that hammerlock into another hammerlock and throws Jerry into the turnbuckle. Big clap rises and the pair chase each other about the ring. Jerry goes to bodyslam Mark and Henry lifts Jerry into a gorilla press and chucks him away.

Jerry runs at Mark… and bounces off him. He runs to Henry and is tossed through the ropes. Jerry cracks his head off the ground on the way out, goes back into the ring and puts his hands down his tights to hold something in his right hand, strengthening his punches. That son of a bitch. Henry gets the fight back and whups on Jerry mercilessly. King tries to escape and is placed in a backbreaker submission, where he almost instantly taps out. Mark Henry wins his debut match in 5:13.

2016 comments:

This was actually a very good match, psychologically speaking. Other than the (foolish) body slam attempt, Jerry uses his superior wrestling knowledge to keep control of Henry and when he is overpowered, he cheats sneakily, but is not caught. Henry comes across as the good, honest, All-American babyface and Lawler is the snide, wicked, arrogant heel. Jerry tapped too quickly on the backbreaker for my liking.

1996 comments:

I hate jingoism… but I hate Jerry “The King” Lawler even more.

Grade: B+

I am pleased but also disappointed that the best match so far is a Mark Henry and Jerry Lawler match. This might be the only time these two men make this list. Marty Jannetty and Leif Cassidy come in to beat on Henry but are thrown out. Then, young upstart Hunter Hearst Helmsley runs in, the rascal, and is tossed out onto the lads on the outside. JR: “Mark Henry beat the King and all the King’s men!”

Henry does a wee dance mid-ring as well. Fair play to him. Pyro goes off above the ring. All right. Calm down.

Coliseum Home Video Exclusive of Dok Hendrix in the locker room with new Tag Team champions, Slammy Award Winning Own Hart, the British Bulldog and Immigration Clarence Mason. The boys come over as faces despite their alliance with Camp Cornette. Owen says Clarence brought the boys luck. Mason is now their new manager. Good man.

Cut to a promo of the Undertaker working as a blacksmith, trying to make some extra money. We are reminded of the Taker/Goldust rivalry. Mankind is mentioned as well. Over the last few PPVs, Taker has only fought Goldust or Mankind. Great feud.

Back in the ring, Goldust has arrived with Marlena. Goldust falls from the ceiling.

The gong rises and the audience go mental as they await the Undertaker to walk out of the house. There he is, walking slowly to the ring, wasting all our time, like Randy Orton would years later. He enters the ring and the two men are about to square off when Taker boots Goldust between the legs and the bell rings for this match.

Final Curtain match: Undertaker def. Goldust w/ Marlena via pinfall in 10:23.

The rules of the Final Curtain match are not stated, but I assume that they are a “Winner leaves town,” stipulation of some kind. Taker launches Goldie from turnbuckle to turnbuckle as Irish Referee Tim White looks on. Taker hits a very high leg drop and Goldust rolls to the ouside, Marlena looking on unimpressed. Taker is hit with a chindrop and Marlena gives him a slap for good luck. Goldust hits a swinging neckbreaker and Undertaker sits right up. Fantastic suplex from Taker followed by another quick sit-up and almost three count.

Goldust takes one hell of a hip toss followed by Old School. Three minutes in and Goldust has barely had any offence as he is thrown out of the ring like a bad child. But wait… he has something illegal in his hand… a bag of gold dust! As Marlena distracts the ref (after being picked up by Taker), Goldust flings the gold dust in Taker’s face. Blinded, the Deadman is as the critic’s mercy. Goldie drives Taker’s face into the steel steps and rolls back into the ring. Taker doesn’t know what to do with himself.

Taker gets his head bounced off the Spanish announcer’s table and rolls back in the ring as Goldust feels himself up. Taker is Irish whipped into the ropes but holds on, turning slowly, his eyes still stinging from the gold dust. Taker gets beaten in the corner and Irish Referee Tim White chastises Goldust for holding a choke on too long. Taker finally fights back with a great backdrop and both men are up on their feet, still beating on each other. Undertaker is rallying as best he can and Goldust is still unable to put the Deadman away.

Marlena goes to the turnbuckle and Goldust feels himself up again, holding the Undertaker’s head at groin level. The Deadman strikes back with a choke and several body shots, sending Goldie flying. A hard Irish whip and Goldust hits a beautiful body slam. Undertaker sits up quickly, the pair run the ropes and a high jump knocks both men down. Goldust goes to the top rope but Taker hits the chokeslam on Goldie, performing the “slit throat” taunt followed by the Tombstone Piledriver for the pin in 10:23.

2016 comments:

Great match. This is starting to pick up. I love Goldust anyways, but the psychology here was wonderful. Goldust seems to be Undertaker’s equal, but his hubris is too much for him to simply win, he has to humiliate Taker and that is his downfall.

1996 comments:

Jesus Goldust is creepier than the actual dead man in the ring.

Grade: B

Undertaker reaches to the heavens, looks about for his urn but Paul Bearer is nowhere to be seen. Will Goldust leave town now? Only time will tell…

On the Card will return on October 13th with the fourth and final part of Mind Games.

Attitude Era #3. SummerSlam (August 18, 1996) Part 3

Previously on On the Card: A tag match and a Bulldog match.

Cut to a promo of some ginger kid watching WWF with aliens. Mind Games is coming up next, I suppose.

Goldust comes out and Vince says he is the “most bizarre individual in the World Wrestling Federation history”. Golden dust falls from the sky and we get the old letterbox intro for the man himself. Marlena is there too. JR wonders if Mero’s high flying style will work in this match. Mr. Perfect muses that that style will get you in trouble.

Cut to Todd Pettengill interviewing Marc Mero. I say this with all sincerity: I love Todd Pettengill. I’ve seen the man interview, I’ve seen him interview and he was much too nice for the Attitude Era. There’s a great interview of him by James Delow of Gorilla Position here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fG5IoZZTMTA

Todd makes a pun of “All that glitters is definitely… GOLDUST!” and shows Mankind chasing Sable and calling her “mommy”. Sable, the useless fuck just stays there. Wildman Marc Mero’s eyebrows go bananas while he tells people to “put up or shut up”. Mero’s music hits and Sable is over but Mero… not so much. It’s sad that the crowd love her so much. Goldust crawling about the ring as Mero just swings about. Mr. Perfect tries to get himself over because he’s mad. Goldust sits on the bottom turnbuckle and the bell rings.

Goldust w/ Marlena def. Wildman Marc Mero w/ Sable via pinfall in 11:01.

Mero is walking about the ring for a bit and the two square off. Goldust’s bum is once again eating his suit and his balls are right there. Goldust slaps Mero in the corner and then uses Irish referee Tim White as a shield. You don’t fuck with Tim. Running the ropes followed by arm drags and Goldust recoils in horror, hugging the bottom ropes like a headcase. Some timewasting as Goldie beats on Mero followed by a pin attempt and a weak drop toe hold. Goldust kid in the audience is having a field day at this.

The match is so boring that the announcers talk about Ahmed Johnson. You know it’s a weak night when he’s the better alternative. Goldust gets an Irish whip, slides to the ground and gives Mero a punch. The Wildman pushes Irish referee Time White out of the way to run at Goldust, who tosses him to the outside. Mero goes back in and is thrown out again, dropped throat first on the barricade as Irish Referee Tim White shows he can count.

Something exciting is happening outside again as the crowd are on their feet. Who is it? Who is coming?

GOOD LORD IT IS MANKIND.

Slick Mick has come out of the boiler room to harass Sable, who is incapable of moving at any speed. Like a heroine in a crappy horror movie, she moves away just enough to create tension. Some officials come to corral him. There are a bunch of cattle rustlers in the back, just use them! I’d bet you the Gunns would be happy to lasso him and hogtie him. Shit, you could probably get the Godwinns to steal him afterwards!

Chinlock city and Sable, now relaxed after her Mankind fright, is still unable to keep time, playing in 5/16. Goldust slaps the Christ out of Marc Mero who is Irish whipped into the turnbuckle and retaliates with… a butt shot? Low blow on Goldust’s low hanging fruit and Mero executes an awesome back body drop followed by a big knee to the perverted Hollywood critic. Wildman goes for the 10 punch, gets to six and Goldust tips him outside. Mero is up quick as a flash and jumps over the ropes, rolls Goldust in and does a nice wee slingshot leg drop over the top rope. Mero goes for the shooting star press and would get the three count but old Marlena is causing trouble on the other side of the ring. Surely they should revoke her licence. Vince says that he has never seen anything like a shooting star press which is shite because he saw one last time. Mero does it every fucking match.

Goldust kicks Mero and the Wildman does not sell it. Goldust hits a fucking great Curtain Call and gets the pin in 11:01.

2016 comments:

Goldust is great but this was not a good match. It was an entertaining two-minute squash stretched out over ten minutes. No memorable spots and Mero fucked up a fair bit, no selling and just moving from spot to spot.

1996 comments:

Oh Mero, how the mighty have fallen! At least Goldust didn’t feel you up like he normally does.

Grade: C

Sable pops into the ring to comfort her husband. Goldust is still reeling from the attack on his nuts. He circles the Meros, shakes his bodonkadonk and crawls after Sable with his big black tongue. He goes to kiss Sable and Mero is up, punching and beating on Goldust before tossing him onto the top rope. Mero goes mental and Goldust crawls away. Sable cries. Fuck sake, Sable, man up.

Promo of Ahmed Johnson mumbling his way through a promo about pain. We see the attack by Faarooq (known as Faarooq Asaad) which caused the alleged kidney issues. In truth, Johnson had legit kidney troubles, but I cannot find if these were caused by the attack or whether it is just a nice coincidence. We see the man getting stitched up by some pretty beautiful young ladies. We also see that Ahmed Johnson had to have the title vacated as he could not compete. The man is pretty annoyed and claims that the belt is (erroneously) called “the WWF Intercontinental People’s Title” and then he gibbers on about something while Kevin Kelly looks on wondering “what the fuck”. Wee interview with Pam Taylor, Ahmed’s nurse, who claims that the injury is still bleeding and if they are unable to stop it, then they will have to remove the kidney.

What the fuck, America. Y’all lettin’ Ahmed walk around with a bleedin’ kidney? No wonder the boy can’t talk right.

Pam adds that without a kidney, Ahmed will never be able to wrestle, which is nonsense. I present to you exhibit A: Mick Foley, a man who has no internal organs at all other than a stomach filled with butter and the rest of his testicles, crammed in the space where once his non-ruptured vital parts were. Ahmed Johnson ignores that shit, though, and says that he will do what he wants to do. There is going to be a SUDDEN DEATH BATTLE ROYALE featuring Stone Cold, Savio Vega, Sycho Sid and Gooooldust. “Ahmed Johnson will be watching at home that night, watching another man win his title.” Wow, way to rub it in.

Out comes Sunny and Faarooq-

Wait what the fuck.

Why is Sunny here? Wasn’t she last seen with those damn Gunns?

Faarooq’s song is the same song that old movies set in Greece open to, which makes sense because our boy Ron Simmons is dressed like a god damn warrior. Faarooq gives off about the fact that he doesn’t have the Intercontinental championship because he beat down Ahmed. Ron Simmons could have cut a fantastic promo here if they’d made Todd look a bit more terrified of him and Faarooq didn’t sound like a spoiled child who hasn’t gotten his way. Sunny is great, hanging onto Todd and just being malicious. Sunny calls Faarooq a “modern day gladiator”. Sunny does a damn better job than Faarooq and looks the bee’s knees as well. What a wonderful woman.

Vince introduces a promo about old Jake the Snake talking about his alcoholism. It’s set to a background of jangly guitars, which clashes with Jake talking about his suicidal thoughts. Jerry lightens the mood by being an unrelenting cunt about things and cracking wise. In terms of dealing with addiction, the Fed have a serious topic here that they could do a lot with and they reduce it to Jerry making Jake look like a fool when the man should be lionised for his strength. Jake beats Jerry whilst wearing a flowery shirt. Jerry pours booze on Jake’s face.

Old Howard Finkel introduces the newest signee to the WWF, fresh off the 1996 Summer Ol-

HOLY FUCK LOOK IT’S MOTHERFUCKING BOWL CUT KID AND VLADIMIR

Where was I? Oh yeah, Mark Henry comes out, all in white. Vince couldn’t give a fuck despite the fact that it is his signee! They don’t even bother to explain how someone like Mark Henry, being a powerlifer could possibly be a good wrestler. Mr. Perfect gives him grief and Henry, not really knowing what the craic is, just shakes his hand anyways. The King comes to the ring, being a cunt as usual, with his bag of tricks (booze) and removes his jacket to show he’s wearing a Baltimore Ravens jersey! In Cleveland! Apparently this is bad and the crowd are not happy about it, not one bit. He is getting such cheap heat! My God, the heat.

Jerry then takes out Jake Roberts’ new tag team partners: Jim Beam and Jack Daniels.

BECAUSE, YOU SEE, JAKE THE SNAKE ROBERTS IS AN ALCOHOLIC AND IS CURRENTLY IN TREATMENT AND IS RECOVERING. THIS MEANS IT IS FUNNY.

Jerry says that Jake’s wife is really ugly, but nothing that a light switch and a six pack won’t cure.

SEE ABOVE.

Jerry then rips on Mark Henry about the fact that he was at the Olympics and had no medals due to injury. He then makes some joke about having gold metals bronzed. The audience rips on King for being a Burger King, which he takes well. He does, however, make a cracking joke about how Jake has barthritis – that’s where you’re stiff in a different joint each night. That’s actually very funny. No caps lock needed.

Jake’s music hits and he gets a lukewarm reception. Vince bigs him up as much as he can and we are treated to another shot of Bowl Cut Kid and Vlad. Great stuff. Jake storms down to the ring and jumps in, eager for a fight. Hard as fuck Referee Harvey Wippleman holds the guys apart despite standing a good foot shorter than our man Roberts. Jerry has another present, a bag of his own with something inside… a magnum of booze. Hilarious. The whole time, Mark Henry is completely ignoring the action in the ring and saying, “I do not like snakes. But I like Jake Roberts.”

Roberts takes out old Revelations and Henry goes mental on the mic. It’s very funny. Jake accidentally stands on his snake as he’s wrapping him around Jerry’s neck. The snake goes for a wee stroll around the ring and Jake lifts him up, popping him in the bag. The bell rings and it’s time for the match, finally.

Jerry “The King” Lawler def. Jake “The Snake” Roberts via pinfall in 4:07.

Jake is going mental in the ring and Jerry refuses to enter, which is fair enough, because there is a huge snake in there. Jerry tries to offer Jake booze but the mic won’t work to tell him so. Jake runs around, bops Jerry’s head off the steel steps and goes to town with him in the middle of the ring. He then kicks Jerry in the nuts but is not disqualified. What? The pair crawl to the outside and Jake still hasn’t taken off his full entrance attire. Bowl cut kid is in the background there, chatting away. Jake gets himself tied up on the ropes and Jerry goes to grab a bottle of booze to feed it to him. DDT countered into a suplex and Jake takes over again.

The crowd start chanting for a DDT and the King grabs Harvey. In his confusion, Jerry gets the bottle, cracks Jake in the throat with it and pulls the tights for the pinfall in 4:07.

2016 comments:

How the mighty have fallen.

1996 comments:

I now realise why Jerry doesn’t wrestle anymore.

Grade: F

After that drizzling shit of a match, lightning strikes the ring, all the forces of Hell appear and drag Jerry “The King” Lawler to his eternal torment in the underworld.

Only joking!

The two men roll in the ring for a while as if they’ve just performed an hour-long match. Jerry cuts a promo on how Jake’s sore throat can be cured by a good old drink of booooooze. Jerry splashes it on Jake’s face before getting more booze and-

SWEET JESUS MARK HENRY ENTERS THE FRAY.

The World’s Strongest Man holds Jerry’s hand (bottle and all) away from Jake’s mouth. What a hero. Either a fan or a member of security takes the booze that Jerry dropped and sneaks it away. Toothless fan in the crowd jeers at the King as he walks past. JR snips that: “That was not an athletic contest that we witnessed. That was a humiliation,” which explains away The King’s entire career at this point. Jake is really selling the booze angle, retching by the side, trying to rid his body of the wicked demon drink. Mark Henry carries him down the aisle and then we cut to Bob Backlund, who is campaigning, apparently, in the crowd. Good man yourself, Bob. Grassroots and all that shite.

On the Card will return on September 8th with the fourth part of SummerSlam 1996.

Attitude Era #2. In Your House 9: International Incident (July 21, 1996) Part 3

Previously on On the Card: Not even Mankind could save this PPV.

Cut to the crowd and they’re all standing as Howard Finkel announces the King of the Ring, Stone Cold Steve Austin. He strolls out with his fingers in the-

Wait what the fuck?

He’s holding his index fingers in the air. The man has not yet learned to extend his middles. The poor bastard.

Anyways, JR says that Austin has a “bad attitude”. He has attitude all right… WWF attitude. Amirite?

Austin starts jawing off to the ref and the crowd give the thumbs down. Sable’s music hits and Wildman Marc Mero comes down. Sable is wearing a revealing outfit, covering about as many inches of skin as her IQ, or at least skill in keeping a damned beat on the fucking ring mat. Marc Mero’s tan is on so thick, Sable sticks to him momentarily. It’s not pleasant. Stone Cold is the heel here and Jerry is right behind him, which is weird because he’d spend most of the Attitude Era talking about how much of a cunt the man was.

The ring bell goes and it is time for…

Stone Cold Steve Austin def. Wildman Marc Mero w/ Sable via pinfall in 10:48.

JR describes Wildman and Stone Cold as, “two great representatives of an… outstanding athletes representing the new generation of the WWF. These guys are young, they are hungry and their best years are way ahead of them.” It is true for at least one of them. The lads run the ropes and the pair go down. Some springing about, armbars and the like. Shot of Sable looking very happy and clapping. Obviously Sable is a terrible valet because she’s not even parking the car. Useless.

Wrist lock city. King calls Stone Cold “harelipped” and says that Austin’s lip was burst from nose to mouth, which seems like a lie. Some matwork followed by a great bridge from both men. The pair struggle for a backslide before Stone Cold gets some punches from old Golden Gloves. Stone Cold rolls out and calls for time out before walking after Sable. She moves as slow as a horror movie heroine escaping an axe-wielding villain. Mero goes for the roll up and Austin holds his mouth – it was the same move that reportedly sent him to the emergency room. Mero looks concerned and Stone Cold pokes his eye. Vince roars, “There’s nothing wrong with his mouth!”

Idiot.

Mero is on the outside and Austin is dragging the Wildman to the corner to hit a weak catapult to the ringpost. JR wonders aloud, “Why did he do that? What was the need?” To win, presumably. Vince calls for Austin to be disqualified for hitting Mero on the ropes. Sable goes to help her husband and Stone Cold kicks and roars. Sable is helping her husband up and hits some terrible 3/4 time on the mat. She’s doing more harm than good. Vince seems to complain after every Stone Cold attack with, “What was the meaning of that? What’s that all about?” as if the man has never seen a fight, let alone a wrasslin’ match, let alone runs an entire company.

Stone Cold slaps the back of Mero’s head and goes off the ropes to a botched Bronco. The crowd go a bit wild as the announcers say, “What’s this? Look at this!” yet the camera does not change. On the hard cam, we see a bellhop move across in front of the ring. Stone Cold seems to botch a powerbomb and keeps Mero on his shoulders for an embarrassingly long period of time before the two men fall over to the outside. The bellhop brings Jerry Lawler a piece of paper, Marlena in tow. Why this is happening in a Mero/Austin match is beyond me. Mero hits a sweet moonsault from the apron to Austin followed by a jump from the apron to the ring. Ten punch at the turnbuckle followed by an attempted hurricanrana. Stone Cold reverses it by throwing Mero onto the ropes, catching him on his Marclets. Reversed stunner. Shot of Marlena. Actual stunner. Stone Cold wins by pinfall in 10:48.

2016 comments:

Botchamania here. I can count a number of fucked up moves and I don’t know if it’s Mero’s fault for not hitting them correctly or Stone Cold’s for assuming Mero knows more than he does. Not the match I expected and not as good as their King of the Ring match. I didn’t like the Marlena angle either. Don’t have other angles in a match, it cheapens the two men in the ring.

1996 comments:

Terri and Sable? I’d be happy if it didn’t take away from the mediocre wresting.

Grade: C

We’re not getting a good average on the first four matches (only three of them actual matches in the PPV, by the way) and we are over half way through the set matches, yet under an hour of the PPV has elapsed. We were promised two hours of action. Action of a hard-hitting, high-flying, heart-stopping and piledriving nature. I feel cheated by this. Stone Cold leaves and Sable enters the ring for her husband. Stone Cold has a star on his bottom. The stunner looks really brutal from this angle, almost as if the opponent trips just as Stone Cold slips.

Bob Backlund is in the crowd. He’s campaigning, apparently. JR says, “Here’s a look now at the Undertaker… musically,” and we cut to the same promo from before. Lots of green screen here. Taker’s voice sounds so young. Once again, we cut to some Mankind, some Goldust, some blacksmithing. Can’t get over how unsafe a blacksmith Undertaker is. I just notice that there is a “record scratch” sound effect in the middle of it. In a Goddamn Undertaker promo.

Back to the ring and JR states that the crowd of 14,804 is the biggest crowd to watch an In Your House PPV live. The next PPV, Mind Games, had an attendance of 15,000, reportedly, but that might not count because it’s a very specific number, isn’t it?

Goldust comes out, all low FPS letterboxed screen and gold dust falling from the sky. This is going to be a great match. Goldust is the shit. I remember hating him back in the day because he would feel wrestlers up and maybe it was WWF’s latent homophobia as well. Either way, I don’t think Goldust was gay, he was just… what are the kids calling it now? Genderfluid? Shit I don’t know.

Vince calls Goldust, “the most bizarre individual ever to step foot in the WWF.” Jr says Goldust is, “in great shape.” Both those statements are probably lies, especially if anyone has met The Iron Sheik. Taker’s music hits and Paul Bearer comes out, followed by the man himself, taking his damn time coming to the ring. We have about an hour of this PPV left and at this rate, the last match will be about 5 minutes long. Taker seems to have forgiven Bearer for battering him about the head with that damn magical urn of his. Minutes later and Taker is finally in the ring. Bearer gives the urn to the ref and slowly begins to disrobe Taker. Vince ponders whose ashes are in the urn.

The Undertaker def. Goldust w/ Marlena via DQ in 12:07.

Brilliant spot as Goldust refuses to enter the ring. Taker’s big ginger roots are showing, staring through the hair. The bell rings and Goldust is still in the ring. Do these officials know nothing of the rules? Pricks, the fucking lot of them. Goldust is time wasting and not getting counted out. Taker makes a move and Goldie damn near jumps over the barrier. Paul Bearer is squealing away in the background like a stuck pig.

Spot of the night so far when Goldust grabs the ref as a shield to protect him from Taker. The ref is terrified and Taker is not moving. Goldust (whose bottom is threatening to eat his suit) stares at Taker, gingerly steps forward and bravely, stupidly, does his weird chest-feeling Goldust move right in Taker’s face. Taker uppercuts Goldie and the perverted Hollywood Critic bounces out of the ring. He threatens to leave, his junk pushing up against his weird lycra bodysuit for all the world to see. Jesus, Dustin, you couldn’t wear a cup?

Vince calls Marlena Goldust’s “director”, which is weird because she never bloody talks. Pfft. Artists. The ref finally starts a count out, after Goldust has been out of the ring for a minute or more. Undertaker is out, slapping Dusty and hits him with an unimpressive chokeslam onto the steep steps. Goldust lands on his hungry butt. It is embarrassing in its stupidity. He hits a ring worker on his way down. Taker is back in the ring and Goldust is taking his time. Out comes Taker, smacking our man Goldust. Taker lifts the steel steps and Marlena dives in front of Goldust. The crowd goes bananas, but, alas, the Phenom drops the steps to the side.

Goldust starts to chew on the turnbuckle in an attempt to remove the padding on the steel rings that hold the ropes together. Clearly a set up for some spot later. I can read this shit like a book. The pair trade blows left and right, slamming each other into the turnbuckles like ragdolls. Undertaker goes for Old School and Vince calls out, “What athleticism!” as if it’s impossible to walk on ropes when holding your opponents hands. Taker is knocked to the outside and lands perfectly on his feet. Goldust’s hungry bum yearns for Taker’s defeat. Goldust takes a great Flair Flop into the centre of the ring and goes straight for the turnbuckle padding when he gets up. Goldust pummels at Taker on the ground and throws the Deadman outside… again.

Vince is shite at telegraphing spots. As soon as someone starts a spot, he’s there with the, “Oh golly gosh, what is this?” business. Anyway, Undertaker takes some steel steps to the spine. Dusty applies a mini camel clutch, threatening to fuck Taker’s ass and make him humble. “Rest In Peace!” chant pops from the crowd, led by our man P-Bizzle. Taker goes for the scoop and gets a handful of Goldusts Goldlets. Another scoop and the Tombstone Piledriver. Taker goes for the pin and pauses. Is he gassed? Is he-

OH CHRIST.

Out from underneath the ring, rises the brown form of Mankind, pulling Taker underneath the mat. The ref gets rid of the scalpel as the ref pantomimes a, “Where did they go?” look. Marlena is crying away and Vince ponders, “How did he do that?” How, indeed, Vincent? How, indeed?

Mankind pops up like Punxsutawney Phil and smoke rises from the hole from which he emerged. The lights flicker and Paul squawks like a damn parrot. Jerry states unequivocally that, “Not even the Undertaker can rise from this,” and JR understanding the absurdity of that statement, adds, “He might be unconscious! The Mandible Claw!” More smoke puffs from the hole, presumably to hide Taker’s eventual appearance from the other side of the ring. He batters Mankind down the aisle and into the house, like an unruly child getting beating by an embarrassed mother.

2016 comments:

This is just another shitty match in an evening of shitty matches. Other than the start, which was grade-A comedy, the rest was guff and just time wasting until Mick got his act in order to jump up from beneath the ring.

1996 comments:

Not even Mick Foley can save this match from bad lights flickering and time-wasting.

Grade: C

Vince says, “Unbelievable! I think we have seen it all but… who knows?” With just under an hour on the clock, Vince, I wouldn’t like to think that is just it. Some of the crowd throw a cardboard crown at Jerry. Security come over to tell them off and calm them down. Backstage, in the boiler room, Mankind and the Undertaker beat on each other. Fakest “camera shut off” effect and back to the announcer team where Jerry says, “I think the ring’s on fire.”

Exclusive Coliseum Video footage of the upcoming Summerslam Boiler Room Brawl match between Taker vs Mankind. Kevin Kelly is having a chat with Goldust, Marlena and Mankind. Mick goes on some rant about his mother while holding Goldust’s wig. Mankind starts headbutting whatever it is that Goldie is lying on. One of the lights above starts to swing back and forth.

On the Card will return on August 11th with the fourth and final part of In Your House 9: International Incident 1996.