The SmarK 24/7 Rant for Monday Night Wars 2/17/97 – Quickie version

Frankly, I haven’t had time this week to sit down and watch all three hours of this show without fast-forwarding, but the 2/17 edition is very interesting and well worth watching.

– RAW is of course the focal point again, as Bret Hart and Sid just can’t have that darn title match without Steve Austin mucking it up, until finally Bret gets to do the j-o-b and lose his belt 24 hours after winning it.  They totally made the wrong call there.  They should have put the belt on Austin and had Bret win it at Wrestlemania rather than trying for the Sid-UT match, but hindsight is 20/20 and Vince was desperate in 97 anyway. 

– The Hardy Boyz do an ignominious job to the Headbangers, still dressed in their 80s pretty boy gear with “MATT” and “JEFF” in big letters on their tights in case they forgot which belonged to who.  The Stage Dive (powerbomb into a flying legdrop) remains a pretty sweet double-team finisher from the Bangers, who sadly get no love from history while the Hardyz went on to become one of the biggest tag teams ever. 

– Rocky v. Leif Cassidy was pretty friggin’ boring, once again reinforcing that Rock didn’t get anywhere in the orbit of good until 99. 

– Over on Nitro, Sasktel has jumped on the Orwellian bandwagon and all mentions and appearances of Lord Voldemort have been excised.  So I hope you kept your original tapes. 

– This was also the week when Prince Iaukea won the TV title from Stephen Regal in a match barely above a squash, kicking off a rather pathetic title reign that was to end with a mercy killing.  Having never seen the original match, I didn’t realize what a joke they treated Iaukea as. 

– Roddy Piper in Alcatraz.  Gimme a f*cking break.

– Tony explaining to the fans at home what a VHS-C tape is — PRICELESS.  File that one under “things you never thought you’d hear on a wrestling show”. 

– The Randy Anderson-Nick Patrick “match” was pretty annoying, what with Eric overturning the decision and never having a foil to overrule him on this stuff.  They just never gave the fans anything to cheer, and it makes it hard to watch the shows sometimes. 

– Kind of sad to watch former cruiserweight stars Doc Dean and Robbie Brookside getting totally destroyed (especially Dean being totally manhandled by Jacqueline) but not surprising somehow.  They had a good look and Dean in particular had some good matches in Japan and could have been something. 

Hopefully next time I’ll have more time to recap the whole thing.


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