Ready for a new edition of ‘The Audit’? I know I am! I had originally planned to keep this going as a weekly review column here on the site, but what you may not know is that this review consumes about 3 to 4 nights a week of my life so after a while it becomes “work” rather than “play”, and we don’t want that. Depending on what time I can get started, sometimes I can finish doing the actual show review in one night, but most times it takes two nights. Factor in my post match thoughts, the lead in comments, and the day each week it takes me to screen cap the show and format everything, and all of a sudden a simple video review turns into a full work week.
I appreciate all the feedback I’ve received and requests for shows/concerns for my whereabouts. The truth is, I never left. I stay in contact almost daily with the site admins, and all parties knew that I’d be returning once I recharged my batteries and made it through my summer stuff. So I’m back with more editions of my review column. I can’t promise there will be a new Audit EVERY week, but I can tell you that I have tons of requests saved and hope to cover a lot of them, especially now that we have the wonderful world of the WWE Network. I may not go so “image” heavy in most of my Audit reviews from here on out to save me a days work, but I promise the content will still be as enjoyable as ever. A special thanks to xStat32x who will be providing me with screen caps of many of the upcoming events I’ll be reviewing.
But enough about me and my boring life, let’s get back down to it as I begin filling your requests from the last few months. We’ll kick off “Season 2” of the Audit by heading back to the fall of 1995, when WCW Monday Nitro was still a “young pup”, and the WWF was still supporting “DieselMania”. It’s In Your House 4, from Canada!
WWF IN YOUR HOUSE 4
“THE GREAT WHITE NORTH”
We travel back to October 22, 1995 from the Winnipeg Arena in Manitoba, Canada. For many years, the Winnipeg Arena was a staple of great action from the AWA, and now the WWF moves in to present their 4th installment of the In Your House PPV. I believe this was the first PPV since WrestleMania VI to take place in Canada.
Reported attendance for the event was 10,339. Here’s the listings for the PPV portion of the card.
* WWF Heavyweight Champion Diesel vs. “British Bulldog” Davey Boy Smith
* WWF Intercontinental Championship Match – Dean Douglas vs. Razor Ramon
* WWF Tag Team Champions The Smoking Gunns vs. Razor Ramon & The 1-2-3 Kid
* Goldust makes his WWF TV Debut vs. Marty Jannetty
* Yokozuna vs. King Mabel
* Fatu vs. Hunter Hearst Helmsley
Plus, Shawn Michaels forfeits the IC Title to Dean Douglas.
* As usual on the 2 hour IYH shows, there was another hour or so of action that took place outside the PPV. In the dark matches on this card Bob Holly defeated Rad Radford, Henry Godwinn pinned Sid (no shitting, Sid was in the doghouse), Bret Hart over Isaac Yankem with the Sharpshooter, and in tag team action Owen Hart & Yokozuna defeated Savio Vega & Bam Bam Bigelow when Yoko pinned Vega.
– The show begins with a stirring rendition of “Oh, Canada”, performed by that great up and coming song artist….. Toni Wilson…. I’ve never heard of her either… Maybe somebody who had the Canadian MuchMusic station from back then can verify if she was even remotely famous, but based on her performance here I’m guessing no. In fact, she very well could have walked up and offered to do the job for free, and away we go. Anyway, now that the anthem is over we move forward to the action, or so you’d think.
Nope. Instead, we’re taken to prerecorded comments from the interim WWF President Gorilla Monsoon. The Gorilla explains that due to injuries sustained a little over a week ago (more on that later), that Shawn Michaels will NOT be able to defend his Intercontinental Championship tonight, and in fact he will have to FORFEIT the title over to his scheduled opponent, Dean Douglas. I thought these guys had 30 days to defend? Why not reschedule? Slick way for Shawn to get out of doing the job….. AGAIN, even though he had stated on the previous Raw that he would in fact be wrestling. FALSE ADVERTISING? IN WRESTLING? NEVER! That’s where those famous four words come in… Card… Subject… To… Change…
So, right off the bat we’re out a match. But no fear, Gorilla announces that Dean Douglas will then have to defend the IC Championship against the new number one contender Razor Ramon, TONIGHT!
What’s that you say? But Razor is already challenging for the World Tag Team Titles, you say? So why the IC Title too? Ahh, my friends, that’s the wonderful power of the Kliq.
And finally, we head to ringside for our opening match with our commentators for the evening, Vince McMahon, Jim Ross and Jerry “The King” Lawler.
(Fatu vs. HHH Notes going in: Nothing of any major note here. No real feud going on or anything, though HHH had sprayed Fatu with some cologne on an episode of Superstars, because Samoans stink or something. Many times on these IYH PPV’s they just liked to throw a random match or two out there to showcase some of the mid-card talent or new gimmicks. Nothing wrong with that. HHH hadn’t even been around 6 months yet but he was already in the Kliq, and Fatu had been working the “Make A Difference” character for a few months at this point. Only in the WWF can you shift from a Samoan Savage, to a man from San Francisco with “Samoan Heritage” who is trying to clean up the streets in a matter of months without having to explain.)
Fatu vs. Hunter Hearst Helmsley
HHH tries to pick up where he left off on Superstars, as he once again tries to spray Fatu with his bottle of cologne. This time, Fatu fights back and takes the bottle of Hunter’s cologne and destroys it. Fatu then attacks HHH, and Helmsley can’t even get his riding gear off. Fatu sends HHH all around the ring, a nice backdrop and an Irish whip sends HHH backwards over the corner buckle and out to the floor. And during that entire melee I think we’ve already found out SIGN OF THE NIGHT!
I’ll let the sign explain itself. Back to the action, Fatu follows HHH outside for further beating, but after they get back inside Fatu gets his head caught between the ropes and HHH takes over with a piledriver and finally removes his shirt. HHH works over Fatu and I begin to notice this crowd SUCKS. We’re 5 minutes into the show and this crowd is already 90% dead, that can’t be good for the duration. Guess that might be why we never got another PPV in Winnipeg, that I can remember anyway. HHH uses the old chinlock spot, Fatu escapes, but Helmsley sends Fatu spinning inside out after a nice looking clothesline that gets him a 2 count. Fatu reverses a whip off the ropes and tries a backdrop, but HHH stops short and hooks for the Pedigree, but Fatu backdrops his way free. HHH with a DDT but YOU CAN’T HURT A SAMOANS HEAD! Fatu pops up and no sells, hitting HHH with a Superkick and a variety of other offense including a diving headbutt from the middle rope, but all of that only gets him a 2 count. Fatu hits a running Diamond Cutter, his set up for the flying splash. Fatu goes up for the splash, but HHH is out of the way. Fatu crashes to the mat, and HHH hits the Pedigree for the win in 8:05. God Bless Jim Ross, saving Fatu’s gimmick, pointing out that the reason the Pedigree knocked him out was because he landed on his face, not his Samoan skull.
He landed on his FACE by gawd, NOT his HEAD!
Post match, the King interviews HHH about the match. Helmsley says that Fatu smelled ghastly. Here comes Henry Godwinn out! They’ve had their issues too. Godwinn teases slopping HHH, so Hunter pulls Jerry Lawler in front of him and runs away with Henry chasing right behind. Dear God, I don’t remember the King’s hair ever being this long. Talk about a long flowing mullet.
(Post Match Thoughts: This was what an opener is supposed to be, a low end version of an opener, but still served the purpose of setting the tone. These guys did fine, it felt like a TV match from today with the basic formula involved. Baby face starts off hot, baby face makes a mistake and heel takes over, baby face makes hot comeback. Fatu jobs clean, so you know who was on the way up here. On an unrelated note, Fatu’s running Diamond Cutter looked pretty bad ass during this “Make a Difference” run and it got a big pop, he should have stuck with it down the line. Your basic match, nothing to write home about, both guys did their parts well, Fatu was “on” tonight, but this wasn’t meant to be anything special. **)
– We’re off to an interview by Dok Hendrix with the Bulldog and Jim Cornette. We’re reminded of Bulldog pinning the champion Diesel on Raw a couple of weeks back. There’s really no interview here, Bulldog just promises to dominate and win the match. Very short, almost pointless.
– As we get set for the tag title match, we go back for an interview with the challengers, Ramon and The Kid. Much like any challenger, they plan to win the titles tonight! Well that’s original guys.
(Tag Title Match Notes going in: Two fan favorite “teams” here going at it with Gunns vs. Razor/Kid. Razor and Kid weren’t a full time team, but their history together goes back over two years at this point and they often called on one another in this situation. Not sure who they beat to earn this shot, but it goes right back to them being in the Kliq. There’s actually a reason for them teaming here, as there’s been a program going between Kid and Razor. Kid had recently got involved in a match between Razor & Bulldog when it was unwanted. This led to matches between the two friends with Kid pinning Razor, and then Ramon pinning the Kid THREE TIMES in one night. The two then made up after they had worked out their frustrations, and now they’re ready for a championship. Makes sense right? Anyways, these guys are all friends based on baby face guy code, but both teams want the belt so everything’s out the window.)
WWF Tag Team Championship Match
The Smoking Gunns (Billy & Bart Gunn) (c) vs. Razor Ramon & The 1-2-3 Kid
The Kid and Billy start things off, two future DX members in there. A good, fast, opening sequence leads to Billy hitting a hiptoss and the Kid kipping up. A tag to Bart, and a tag to Ramon. The fans with their first real pop of the night when Razor tags in. Ramon and Bart have an exchange, and the Kid yanks the rope down causing Bart to fly over the top rope to the floor. Billy jumps in the ring to protest the cheating Kid while Razor looks on in confusion of what just happened. Razor takes over on Bart Gunn, Kid tags in and hits a spin kick and then celebrates in a taunting fashion which upsets Billy again. They do a spot where Razor picks up the Kid and throws him in a Fall Away Slam onto Bart. Good double team spot for 1995. The challengers remain on top a little longer before Razor gets dropped by Bart. At that point we see Dean Douglas looking on in the back, waiting for his IC Title match later.
Razor gets the hot tag to the Kid, but Billy tags in as well, and it’s Billy Gunn who hits the Kid with a HIIIIIIGH backdrop. Back Gunn back in with a nice looking backbreaker. Double team by the Gunns, Bart holds the Kid up in a suplex and Billy dropkicks him down. Good height by Billy. Billy Gunn misses a splash into the corner but Bart pulls Billy on top for the pin, but then Razor rolls the Kid on top for the pin. 1—2–Billy kicks out! The Kid gets the hot tag to Razor. Ramon takes it to both Gunns. RAZOR’S EDGE ON BILLY GUNN!!!! But the Kid is BEGGING FOR THE TAG. Ramon looks confused again. Just pin him asshole! No the Kid gets his way. Kid tags in, and they wasted a lot of time. Kid lays on top of Billy, 1–2–Billy Gunn counters with a CRICIFIX on the mat. 1–2–3! The Gunns win in 12:45. Take that Kid!
Winners: The Gunns, no, fo-real
After the match, the Kid throws a mini-tantrum and attacks both of the Gunns from behind. The Gunns quickly recover and have a standoff with Razor and the Kid as Ramon tries to defend the Kid even though he doesn’t condone what he’s just done.
(Post Match Thoughts: A little better than the opener for sure, but still didn’t feel like a story ever started. Some spots were thrown in mixed with the Kid’s heelish antics. Razor would get his chance to save face later in the show. I’ll give it **1/4)
Dok Hendrix is in the back trying to shill life size posters of Bret Hart and Shawn Michaels. Dok says “You could have Bret Hart standing over you when you wake up.”. Well, that’s an interesting (and creepy) way to try and sell something.
– And now it’s time for the ring debut of GOLDUST. A short Goldust promo airs before his entrance.
(Goldust vs. Jannetty Notes going in: It’s the debut of the Goldust character, so who better to give him as his first televised opponent than a guy who can help make anyone look good, MJ. Let’s see how this thing plays out. Lights, Camera, Action!)
Marty Jannetty vs. Goldust
Well here it is, the lights, the costume, the glitter, an elaborate entrance by 1995 standards for Goldust. But once the wig comes off, the crowd remains dead silent. Goldust charges Jannetty and misses, well that’s a great way to debut. Jannetty on the offense and clotheslines Goldust out to the floor. Marty charges Goldust in the aisle and turns him inside out with a clothesline. Again, not a great way to debut. Goldy’s first paint job is a little hard to get past, his entire face is almost all gold except his ears, which are black for some reason and it looks absolutely stupid. Anyway, Goldust finally gets back in the ring and takes over for a moment before Marty comes back with a haracanrana. Goldy shoves Marty, but Jannetty stays on top. Goldust finally hits a clothesline that turns Jannetty inside out. Boy, guys are really making use of that twisty flip clothesline bump tonight. Begin a long, boring, and sloppy onslaught from Goldy. Jannetty eventually tries to fight back after snap maring Goldust out to the floor, but Goldust comes right back after sending Marty into the ring post. And now back in the ring it’s chinlock time. Jannetty surprisingly escapes and tries to float over the back of Goldust, and Goldy just takes a back bump for no reason. That was just…. bad. In this middle of this “hot action”, they cut to a Dracula Bela Legosi look alike in the crowd because that’s just how hot this match is.
Somebody hits a DDT and Jannetty goes up top for the Fist Drop, Goldy moves but Marty lands on his feet and still drops an elbow after standing there forever. Marty drops Goldy and goes for the flying Fist Drop again, but Jannetty comes down face first into the foot of Goldust. Goldy follows up by giving Marty a “Thumbs Down”, what a gimmick! And then a Gourdbuster and this thing is FINALLY over. YUCK. 11:15. Crowd makes ZERO noise.
Winner: Whhhhhhhhp, Gooooooold-Dust
(Post Match Thoughts: Jannetty had just come back a few weeks earlier, and it seemed like they wanted to protect him somewhat and at the same time get over this new Goldust character, and that didn’t mesh well. Both men are more than capable in the ring, but they just didn’t click either, there were several blown spots and the crowd was dead for the majority of this which hurt it even more. Dustin was still working the kinks out of the Goldust character in the ring, and he was slow and plotting during the early months. This was pretty bad, not the worst, but very boring. After MONTHS of Goldust vignettes, I’d say this was a VERY lackluster debut. He’d be on his way back to NXT if this were 2014. Lucky for us it was 1995, and we’d still get to know the Goldust we grew to love today. 1/4* just for being there, hard to sit through.)
– Call the WWF Hotline and talk to the Gunns and the Kid. This IYH is so shitty that they haven’t even gotten around to blurring the phone numbers.
– We go back to Raw 2 weeks ago and watch as King Mabel and Yokozuna crush the face of the Undertaker. Actually, most of the attack was done to his ribs, but Mabel broke his face with a legdrop so that’s what’s up. We learn the Taker will be back at the Survivor Series. And we’ve got Mabel on his way out on his royal throne with some poor jobbers having to carry him to the ring.
– Backstage it’s an interview with Jim Cornette, Yoko, and Fuji. Cornette says Monsoon made this match just to cause trouble, because he was worried that Yoko and Mabel were going to destroy the company.
(Notes going in: This was originally slated to be Mabel vs. Undertaker with issues dating as far back as the King of the Ring, but Taker had recently sustained a broken orbital bone during a double team attack from Mabel and Yokozuna on Raw. Taker would return for his revenge at the Survivor Series, but it was announced on the prior Raw that here at IYH it would be Yokozuna who was the most appropriate and suitable replacement to take on the Kiiiing. While it doesn’t look like it’s going to be a wrestling clinic, it was sure unique for the time. We didn’t get many heel vs. heel matches in the WWF, much less two top level heels, much less two top level heels of this size.)
Yokozuna (with Jim Cornette & Mr. Fuji) vs. King Mabel (with Sir Mo)
Mabel kicks this thing off with a slap across Yoko’s face, which leads to some punches traded. Yoko wins the fight and clotheslines Mabel through the ropes to the floor. Mabel steps back in and lands some blows, the two guys do a crisscross spot which scares the living fuck out of me if I’m sitting at ringisde. I’m just waiting for a buckle to snap. Somehow the ring stays in place as Mabel hits a ‘jumping’ clothesline. I don’t need to tell you why “jumping” is in quotations. So Yoko rolls outside to regroup himself, but when he climbs back inside he just stands in the corner still out of breath. What comes next is just ridiculous. Yokozuna just stands in the corner and watches on as Mabel charges with an Avalanche. Are you kidding me? If you’re that fucking tired stay out of the ring. Mabel does some dancin’ like the Jive Soul Bro that he is, God where was Slick for this gimmick?! Mabel whips Yoko into the corner but Zuna retaliates with a clothesline and Mabel goes down. Yoko misses a legdrop, Mabel misses an elbowdrop, oh the poor ring. As they both lay there it becomes clear the crowd is as dead as the wrestlers appear to be. Both guys back up and throwing headbutts, Mabel goes for a Bulldog but they fuck that shit all up. Wow was that bad. That was seven shades of baboons ass bad. Mabel goes down with the bulldog and Yoko follows eight years later. They then brawl to the floor and both get counted out at 5:13 while the managers get involved. Holy fuck, that was bad. Just….. bad.
Official Result: A Double Count Out.
And then after that shitfest of horror (appropriately booked near Halloween), the two big men reenter the ring and hug it out. High fives all around and they raise each others hands to close this crapfest.
(Post Match Thoughts: For a grand total of 5 seconds, the spectacle of looking at these two across the ring from each other is kinda cool, but then the bell rang. By far, one of the worst matches I’ve ever seen. I believe one wrestling move was attempted in the match, and that was botched worse than just about anything this side of Jackie Gayda vs. Trish Stratus. Not that either of these guys were putting on classics with anyone, but they were worse than usual here, which says a lot for Mabel. This shit gets -**. I thought I’d never rate anything lower than a negative star, because really, how can something be worse than that. Well, here it is.)
– They use some PPV time to promote the Survivor Series while we get set up for the next segment.
Shawn Michaels Vacates IC Title To Dean Douglas.
Okay, so here we go. Dok Hendrix stands by with interim WWF President Gorilla Monsoon in the ring as Dean Douglas and the Intercontinental Champion Shawn Michaels make their way to the ring.
Wow, Shawn looks like shit. I said I’d touch on it later, so let’s get to it. For those who don’t know this era well, the story goes like this… Shawn Michaels, 1-2-3 Kid & Davey Boy Smith were at a night club in Syracuse, NY. Due to a few different versions of the story I’ll only touch on the basic points of what happened next. The three wrestlers were in a car ready to leave when a skirmish with “eight to ten servicemen” took place. Shawn was pulled from the front seat of a two door car, and these servicemen began to beat the holy hell out of the half passed out, completely wasted, Michaels. It was said his head was slammed in the car door and he was beaten down in the street. Smith and the Kid were attempting to aid HBK, but they were stuck in the back seat of a two door car and it took them some time to get out of their situation. Smith and Kid ended up finally making it out of the car, with Kid suffering no damage and Smith getting a shot to the eye. Shawn was left all fucked up and they’d announce on Raw that he had been attack by a group of “thugs”.
I read that Shawn didn’t suffer any internal damage, all cosmetic, but he did almost lose an eyelid and needed 20 stitches. Gross. As late as Raw they had promoted Shawn to wrestle on the PPV, but the story goes at some point in the week the doctors were advising against it. Gorilla forces Shawn to hand the title over to Dean. A busted up Shawn reluctantly begins to hand his title over when Douglas snatches it and celebrates his new championship reign. Shawn walks away, trying to steal the spotlight with his sad fag face turning towards the camera with a look of sadness. I don’t feel anything for you HBK, you got out of another title loss. DO A JOB.
Douglas is announced as the new IC Champion, but NOT SO FAST MR. DOUGLAS! You’ve got a match to be had.
(IC Title Match Notes going in: My first question is, why was there a title change, and not just a vacancy so that this match would determine the next champion. I guess they threw Shane Douglas a bone. A SMALL bone, but still a bone. See the Kliq aren’t complete assholes. Fun fact here is that Razor and Dean had started to work a program, and then it got somewhat derailed and turned into an angle between Ramon and 1-2-3 Kid. Dean still played a part in the feud, but he wasn’t the main catalyst. Hall had decided he didn’t like Douglas, so he’d rather work an angle with his buddy Waltman. We get the Razor/Dean blowoff here. Well, I wonder what will happen.)
WWF Intercontinental Championship Match
Dean Douglas (c) vs. Razor Ramon
Even though the crowd made some noise for Ramon in his first match, this crowd is just the shits and outside of the beginning they’re just dead here as well. Ramon hammers on Dean to get going and sends him outside. Douglas returns and Ramon works his arm. You’d think some of these guys like Douglas and Mabel are mic’ed up as you can hear everything they’re saying, the crowd is THAT dead. We learn during this match that Bret Hart will come out for commentary on the Diesel/Bulldog match, but Lawler refuses to allow Hart to commentate with him. Lots of armbar garbage by Ramon, Dean escapes each time, but his offense consists of a few strikes before he misses something, and then its right back to Razor in charge. The next several minutes it’s all Razor with a fallaway slam, clotheslines, a back suplex, Dean is even throws to the floor… TWICE (three times, if you count the time Dean is knocked off the apron). Ramon humiliates Douglas some more, slapping him around earlier in the match and now dumps a bottle of water on his head. Ramon sets up for the Razors Edge, but they’re by the ropes and so you know what happens then. Dean escapes and FINALLY takes charge….. or so I thought. Dean came back once again for 5 seconds before jumping off the top rope right into a chokeslam from Ramon. Razor tries a superplex but is knocked off, Douglas with a high cross body, but RAZOR ROLLS ON TOP from momentum. JESUS CHRIST YOU CAN’T EVEN GIVE THE GUY A FUCKING CROSS BODY????? Razor gets two count. Dean is up and CONNECTS WITH A DROPKICK, his first real move of the match. What a kind guy that Razor is to offer Dean his first bit of offense TEN PLUS MINUTES INTO THE MATCH. But that’s okay, because Razor fires back with a back suplex, a simple back suplex, but Razor’s so dead from that one dropkick he can’t even cover properly. Instead, Ramon lays next to Dean and brushes him with his forearm on Dean’s chest. 1–2–Dean’s leg is clearly under the ropes, but the ref don’t give a fuck. So, 3 it is. Razor is the new IC champion at 10:59 and that finish made about as much sense as the rest of this match.
Winner: And Newwwwww IC Champion, Razor Ramon
Jerry Lawler tries to sell the angle that Douglas also had his arm on Ramon’s chest, so it was a double pin, but a replay shows Dean’s arm stuck under Razor’s head so that wasn’t happening. Razors the champ, what a shock, his expression says it all. He don’t give a fuck, but just as long as Shane Douglas didn’t keep it.
(Post Match Thoughts: Wwwwwowwww, is all I can say. This was like a lengthy Razor squash with Dean barely even getting any offense in. I think the Brooklyn Brawler would have gotten in more offense. I’ve probably watched this PPV once, and even then there was probably a lot of fast forwarding to be had. Actually sitting here and watching this disgusts me even more. The Kliq was out of control. Not only does Douglas play the whipping boy the entire match, but the finish was all kinds of fucked up. A back suplex, a pin with a forearm, Dean’s leg visibly hanging entirely out of the ring. Then what made things even more confusing was Dean raising his hand after the match assuming he won. Was he supposed to put his arm over Ramon as well for a “double pin”? That’s how Lawler sells it on commentary but he clearly didn’t. If you were just going to beat on a guy for 11 minutes, why not just cut the match down to 30 seconds, do a quick surprise finish and all parties would have come out looking better than this, and it would have saved me a lot of time. I can’t really blame the crowd for being dead. Confusing ending to a shit match, and Razor’s mannerisms after the match explain how much he gave a fuck about the match, just see above. He treats it like a squash, which I guess in some ways it was. Stupid. )
(WWF Title Match Notes going in: It was shortly after SummerSlam when the team of the Bulldog and Diesel were scheduled to take on Men on a Mission at Raw, when out of nowhere Smith would turn heel on Big Daddy Cool and Powerslam him to the mat. This would lead to a later 6-Man tag on Raw where Yoko/Owen/Davey Boy would defeat Diesel/Shawn Michaels/Taker, with Smith getting the pin on Diesel to give him the momentum going into this match. You’d think that anyway. Winner here defends against the Hitman at Survivor Series.)
Bret Hart shows up prior to the main event and gets in a few good shots on Jerry Lawler to run him off of commentary. The Hitman replaces The King’s spot on commentary for the main event. If you’re wondering why the hell Bret didn’t get a PPV match on a CANADIAN PPV, well see above. At the top of the review I made mention that Bret had defeated Isaac Yankem in a dark match, and since Hart had already beaten Yankem in a Steel Cage match on the past Raw, I assume this match would have been pointless. Now if you ask me why they didn’t just book Bret in another match, that’s an entirely different story. Anyway, Bret Hart sits by, looking to challenge the winner of this match at the Survivor Series and providing us with his expert monotone commentary, which was still more chipper than this lame duck crowd.
WWF Heavyweight Championship Match
Diesel (c) vs. “British Bulldog” Davey Boy Smith (with Jim Cornette)
They start off with some locking up, Bulldog takes a headlock and off they go into a crisscross spot. First Yoko/Mabel, and now Diesel? Working those big guys out aren’t they. Diesel ends this crisscross spot with the very spectacular… forearm. Bulldog tries a body block, but he’s caught and slammed as if he’s nothing. A second slam and Davey decides to exit to the floor. Bulldog pulls Diesel outside, but it’s Smith who eats the ring post. Back inside, Diesel takes charge, but Smith is able to clip his leg and take the champ down. Davey dropkicks Diesel out of the ring over the top rope, Diesel staggers into the commentary table but saved by Bret Hart. Diesel then PIE FACES the Hitman, which Vince plays off as instinct. Even Hart blows it off as “adrenaline”. Bulldog clips Diesel again on the floor during the squabble with Hart and rolls Diesel back inside to work the leg. Davey applies the shittiest looking leglock ever, the announcers don’t even know what it is. Diesel thrown outside and JIM CORNETTE WITH AN ELBOWDROP ON DIESEL’S KNEE! Fuck yeah, wake me up Cornette! Bulldog rams Diesel into the steps, and Cornette gets in some more licks. What a dirty manager.
Back in the ring Bulldog applies a Half Crab, then a full Boston Crab. Diesel is right at the ropes for the break, but instead he “powers out”. Bulldog with another Half Crab, Diesel escapes, and then a leg grapevine, Diesel escapes, and then ANOTHER leg grapevine, and you guess it… Diesel escapes. The crowd is chanting for Diesel and popping more now than the entire show, apparently slow boring shitty leglocks work the charm of the “Great White North”. I spoke too soon, even this crowd eventually dies again from all of the grapevines. Diesel eventually reverses a suplex to wake the crowd up. Diesel follows up with a back suplex, that dreaded back suplex that took out Dean Douglas in the prior match rears it’s ugly head again, and now both men are dead. Davey is up and he motions towards Bret Hart, as the Bulldog TRIES to apply the Sharpshooter on Diesel. And I mean TRIED. I don’t what what the hell Davey is trying to apply, but that ain’t no Sharpshooter. Smith immediately loses his balance with the hold and falls as Bret comments “Well he should learnt o put it on right”. That right there is ‘bowling shoe ugly’ to quote Jim Ross.
Bulldog tries a powerslam, but Diesel falls on top. Wait, wasn’t it Diesel who had the bad leg? Bulldog tries the Running Powerslam but Diesel slides out and lands the big Boot. Cornette gets yanked into the ring and Bulldog ends up running into him. Davey hangs across the middle rope as Diesel waddles comedically across the ring to drop a straddled leg on his head. The two men take to the floor and they blow a fucking post spot. Are you kidding me? Bulldog goes to shove Diesel into the steel post and something goes awry, so they have to do it twice. UGH. Bulldog loses his cool and decided to slap the shit out of Bret Hart all of a sudden.
Well the Hitman bends, but the Hitman don’t break! And if you know where I got that line from, we both need help! Anyway, Hart gets pissed off and he attacks the Bulldog, causing a DQ on Diesel at 18:19.
Winner: The Bulldog, on a DQ
First we get a fight between the Bulldog and Bret, and when that is over and done with Hart is left standing face to face with his opponent at the Survivor Series, Diesel. And Diesel is none too happy with the outcome of the match, nor Bret Hart’s interference. Not to be outdone by his buddy Razor’s epic win over Shane Douglas, Diesel wanted to pin the Bulldog with one finger after a headlock takeover, damn you Bret for ruining the finish!
Now Diesel and Bret get into it to build some tension towards their Survivor Series bout, but the two men are quickly separated by officials and wrestlers alike. And that concludes the show as they can’t seem to sign off fast enough.
(Post Match Thoughts: All of those leglocks were just monotonous, and what made it worse was most of them just sucked. I mean grab a hold or two and work those spots, maybe Diesel reaches the ropes for the first one and breaks the second. But ten leglocks? Overkill isn’t the word, and it just made the match drag on, and on, and on, and on. It’s like there wasn’t a ‘ring general’ there to keep the match flowing at a good pace. This was probably Diesel’s worst performance on PPV for his first year long run as champion. Yes, I do remember the matches with Sid and Mabel, but those matches were half the length because they knew going in they were going to suck. I don’t know if they had faith in Davey, or if they just didn’t give a shit here, but they took a 10 minute match at best and forced it to stretch twice that length of time. It’s been proven with a guy like Shawn of Bret that Diesel could be managed to a pretty good 20 minute match, but that didn’t happen here. Makes me wonder if Smith was talented, but needed someone to lead him, because the more I think about it a lot of Davey’s matches as a heel just sucked. I don’t know if any sucked more than this match for either of these two during this era of WWF though. Long and boring. )
THE FINAL AUDIT: This show just never seemed to pick up, it felt like 2 hours going on six weeks, it just dragged. The first match was okay filler, the tag title match was probably the best thing on the show and even that wasn’t all that great. And then from there the show tanked straight to the bottom and it never resurfaced. It was my opinion that Marty Jannetty could have a good match with anyone, and the Goldust character would eventually become very strong and very over, but here nothing seemed to click for the two, and I mean NOTHING. That Yoko/Mabel match had to be the worst match of 1995, then they follow that up with Shawn relinquishing the belt so that his buddy Razor could win a ten minute squash to get the title. Then the World Championship match was just the icing on an already blah show. The long, boring, leglock fest was the exclamation point on an already dead PPV. If you want proof the Kliq was running the show, look no further than this this PPV right here. All but 2 matches involve the Kliq, they even had Razor wrestle twice because they didn’t have enough Kliq members to go around. Add to that the shitty finishes, the boring matches, and the crowd just flat out sucked, maybe more than any other crowd I can think of up until that period.
Several months back I reviewed what some claimed was “the worst PPV of all time” in the Great American Bash ’91. Well, to that I say, whoever thinks that hasn’t reviewed IYH 4. I’d watch the Bash all day long before I sat through this shit again, and the Bash runs 45 minutes longer, so think about that for a minute. This one gets a big thumbs down, I’d go a 2 out of 10 rating, that’s safe to call an ‘F’ if you’re grading these things like Dean Douglas. I remember King of the Ring ’95 being the worst show of all times, or at least of 1995, but after making it through this cow flop I’m not so sure. I don’t plan to Audit KotR ’95 anytime soon, because I don’t think my heart could take it after this world of poopoo, but I am determined to one day figure which of these shows are worse! In case you hadn’t guessed, IYH 4 has not only failed this Audit, but I’m going to recommend that it sit in the Federal Prison for a while. I hope I never see this show again in my lifetime.
I’ve got some good WCW and WWF picks coming your way already, but I’m always taking requests, so keep them coming… Til’ next time this is the REAL IRS, Ian R. Singletary, catcha later, tax cheats!