The Netcop Retro Rant for In Your House III: Triple Header.
– Live from Saginaw Michigan.
– Your hosts are Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler and Mr. McMahon.
– Opening match: Savio Vega v. Waylon Mercy. Waylon is Danny Spivey
with a black dye job, knowaddimean? Waylon was a very high-concept
gimmick that got over big on RSPW but failed due to injuries on the part
of Spivey. The idea is that Mr. Mercy is an Forrest Gump-like idiot
savant from Georgia who dresses like ECW’s Hat Guy and believes himself
to be a face but wrestles like a heel. This is pretty cerebral stuff
for 1995. This is Mercy’s one and only PPV appearance. This match is
slow and plodding, to say the least. Savio sucks less than others who
could have been stuck in there, I’ll give him that much. Very sloppy
brainbuster from Spivey provides for a scary moment. Savio with the
spinning heel kick for the surprise upset. *1/2 This made zero sense
at the time, but since Mercy was leaving anyway I can understand why
they did it.
– Sycho Sid (w/ Ted Dibiase) v. Henry Godwinn. There was no Phineas at
this time — HOG was just a JTTS with a bad gimmick. He turned face
after refusing a spot in the Corporation, so Dibiase sicked Sid on him.
Sid was seriously dogging it by this point, and was fired in December
(then re-hired after softball season the next year). This match sucks,
of course. HOG with the Slop Drop (Scorpion Deathdrop), but Dibiase
pulls him off. Another exchange, and Dibiase trips him this time.
Legdrop, powerbomb, say goodnight Henry. 1/2* Bam Bam Bigelow attacks
Henry, but Kama comes out to make it a 2-on-1 for the Corporation, then
Henry slops Dibiase when he’s not looking. 1995 was such a wretched
year for the WWF.
– Gorilla Monsoon argues with Jim Cornette because Owen Hart has yet to
show up, despite being in the main event.
– The British Bulldog v. Bam Bam Bigelow. Bulldog had just recently
turned heel and joined Camp Cornette. Sloppy match, as Bigelow knows
he’s bound to be canned any day now and just goes through the motions.
Bammer’s big headbutt only gets a two-count, which is the kiss of death
for any babyface — when your finisher doesn’t work, it’s time to pack
it in. They spend the entire match hyping Bulldog v. Undertaker on RAW
the next night. Kiss of death #2 — when your opponent is scheduled for
a bigger match on RAW, it’s time to pack it in. Bulldog works on the
arm until finally I just FF and get it over with. I stop when Bigelow
regains the advantage, but misses the Lunasault. Bulldog whips Bam Bam
to the corner, powerslam, see ya. Bam Bam’s last appearance of note in
the WWF. *
– Ad for Wrestlemania: The Special, just to rub salt in Bam Bam’s
– Mr. Bob Backlund waddles down to ringside to introduce…
– Dean Douglas v. Razor Ramon. These guys hate each other’s guts in
real life, although the real nasty stuff didn’t start until In Your
House IV. Pretty good to start, with some awkward pauses because
Douglas is a talentless hack deep down. Hall’s dazzling array of
armbars don’t help, either. Douglas must have suffered some pretty
crippling injuries in his later ECW tenure because he looks fit as a
fiddle here. One of my major complaints about Douglas — he’s a very
generic wrestler, with no real “mark out” moves that distinguish him
from the pack. I think Val Venis is having the same problem. Ramon
comeback and he does his usual spots. Ref bumped. Ramon with the
Razor’s Edge, but 1-2-3 X-Pac runs in and counts the pin, which of
course means nothing. Ramon is fooled into breaking the pin, however,
which gives Douglas the chance to roll him up for the real pin. Not
bad, even with the cheap ending. **3/4 The Ramon-Kid feud was one of
the few highlights of 1995.
– Dok interviews Shawn & Diesel.
– Jean-Pierre Lafitte v. Bret Hart. You may know Lafitte as the fat
Quebecer. Lafitte was doing Chris Jericho’s “trophy” gimmick, and stole
Bret Hart’s prized jacket to set this up. For some reason, Vince felt
the need to stick Bret in there with every two-bit newcomer in an
attempt to make them look good with help from Bret. Ask yourself what
Hakushi, Isaac Yankem and Jean-Pierre Lafitte are doing these days and
wonder whether it worked or not. A thorougly decent match to start,
even without Bret carrying it. Lafitte does look green in places. Too
long of a resthold in the middle. Lafitte hits a top rope legdrop but
misses a Cannonball. Bret comeback, Lafitte blocks the Sharpshooter and
shoves him outside, but misses a somersault plancha. This guy is having
no luck. Back in the ring, and it’s Bret’s Same Five Moves. Lafitte
blocks the elbowdrop, however and does some more cool stuff. This match
just keeps getting better by the second, and the finishing sequence is
like three minutes long! Bret crotches himself on the ropes, but
Lafitte misses *another* big move. Double clothesline, but Bret wiggles
into position for the Sharpshooter and Lafitte is too gone to stop him
and submits. A terrific ending and a great match. **** Bret reclaims
the jacket by way of victory.
– Cornette offially designates British Bulldog as Owen Hart’s
replacement. This was just begging for a screwjob and everyone knew it.
– Main event: WWF Tag titles v. WWF title/Intercontinental title,
Yokozuna & British Bulldog v. Diesel & Shawn Michaels. The concept here
is simple: He who is pinned loses his title. Superhot opening sequence
thanks to Shawn, but Yoko gets in and kills it. Totally. Yoko
restholds abound until Shawn makes the hot tag to Diesel, who
obliterates Bulldog. Then a pier-six brawl and Bulldog gets creamed
again. Owen Hart suddenly runs out and launches himself off the top
rope, but Diesel catches him coming down, jackknifes him, and pins
him??? New champions. *1/4 This WCW-like boneheaded booking decision
would be overturned hours later on RAW. Shawn & Diesel were credited
with a title reign here, however.
– The Bottom Line: Eh. Like most of 1995 for the WWF, there was no
direction here and nothing that happened affected anything else. To put
it in perspective, the booking was a combination of Bill Watts and the
Clique, and various politics meant that nothing really clicked, except
for the stuff with Shawn, Diesel, Ramon and the Kid. (Gee, I wonder
why). Watts was never suited for the WWF, which is why he was turfed
out as fast as he was.
Basically the whole year was a writeoff and this is just another example
of that. I didn’t actively hate the show (Douglas-Ramon and
Hart-Lafitte saved it quite nicely) but it didn’t really make an
impression on me one way or the other. Neutral feelings.