— Hey guys, it’s David D. here with another vintage recap. But first, let me say that this whole With Spandex thing is really cool and fun to be a part of.
— Yesterday I wrote about the 15th anniversary of the “Rap Is Crap” angle in WCW. People liked it so much that they thought I was Brandon Stroud.
— Follow me on the Twits. @DavidDTSS
— Now, on to wrestling things that happened 18 years ago here at Vintage Best and Worst, where mortality stares you in your eye sockets.
Worst: Jim Ross’ Heel Turn Is Still Going On
Guys. Did I mention to you how this is the worst? If you ever want to see an early WWF angle with Vince Russo’s fingerprints all over it, look no further than this. We get JR making all sorts of edgy shoot comments about Vince McMahon’s announcing and whoa there he mentioned that Vince owned the WWF. Tsssssss apply water to the burn. This whole fiasco got amped up by the fact JR’s mic wasn’t working the whole first 15 minutes of the PPV. So instead of focusing on the Austin/HHH matchup we get HOT ANNOUNCING STRIFE.
Of course this all is part of Jim Ross bringing in Fake Razor Ramon and Earth-2 Kane which is a train wreck I want no part of. But alas…it’s happening.
Best: Stone Cold Promo Gold Continues
Whoo man. Austin is pure platinum on the mic, but you already knew that. Here he lays into Savio Vega, builds his feud with Bret Hart and does the “I respect the other heel” bit even if he calls him Hunter Hearst. It’s about 90 seconds long and more fire than any promo you’ve heard on RAW in ages.
Best: This Is Basically NXT
Watching IYH events really illuminates how crazy the current WWE business model is. Bray Wyatt debuted in the WWE a year ago and I bet he’s had as much WWE televised in-ring time as both Helmsley and Austin in their three-combined years in the company. There’s just so much TV to fill and every important (or even mildly important) guy on the roster is wrestling 15 minute matches at least once a week it seems. So there’s a good and bad to this:
1) In 2014, Austin and HHH would have had this match 13 times on RAW, Smackdown, Main Event and Superstars already. Which is overkill and totally makes this whole thing pretty bland. But…
2) Austin and HHH get to wrestle on WWF TV so much that they have incredible chemistry by the time thy get on a PPV. Maybe.
Clearly this is more of a benefit to HHH as Austin had been having long matches on TV in WCW for most of the decade already, but still, this match is pretty much an NXT match as they look brand new to the product compared to other wrestlers who are in the company as long in 2014. The match is good and you can see them putting the pieces together, and it’s great when Vince says one of them could be champion one day and you know they’ll both be megastars.
Unfortunately, they spend half the match stuck in rest holds as JR and Vince sell their stupid heel announcer angle.
Worst: An Ending To A Match With Little Logic
The Smoking Guns and The Bulldhozers had a rematch to their tag title bout from last month and it was, well, a match. They hit the same notes as last month with the only exception being the Guns playing up their dissension more. Owen carries the match as usual, but the ending just doesn’t work.
As you can see in the pic above, Bulldog *hides* behind Bart like I hide behind my couch when I’m playing tag with my son. He also has a handful of Bart’s jeans but Bart doesn’t notice because of that comfort dip Brett Favre talks about or something. In the end, Billy misses the finisher and Owen gets the pin.
Fashion Break: Farooq In His Special Hat
I won’t make the special class joke. Nope. Won’t do it. Instead I’ll just say DAMN.
Best: Even Sable Doesn’t Know WTF You’re Talking About
I don’t know if Sable and Mero were dating or what at the time of this promo but I do know that Sable wants to laugh really hard at whatever the hell he’s talking about. Me too, boo boo. Me too.
It’s also the same look my wife gives me when I say things like “I have to concentrate on writing about wrestling pay-per-views from 1996 now.”
Worst: Marc Mero Still Having The Most Mediocre Of Matches
Bless Goldust’s tiny golden heart. Getting a good match out of Marc Mero was damn near impossible and I’m pretty sure his opponents just figured they could handle the entire match and tell him when to do something jumpy. And Mero doing a shooting star press is basically the same as Buff Bagwell busting out Canadian Destroyers. It’s their one move. Their Spirit Bomb that they spend the whole match saving up energy for. That’s the only way to explain how he’s utterly incapable of doing anything else for the entirety of the rest of his matches.
Meanwhile we get some distracting story of Helmsley and Mr. Perfect, which will of course lead to Perfect joining Helmsley because wrestling logic.