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Shotgun Saturday Night - November 1, 1997

by Scrooge McSuck

- We're only a week away from the 11th annual Survivor Series, cutely titled "Gang Rulez" and with no distinguishable people advertised on the poster. Talk about making one of your four big PPV's feel like a big deal. For those who forgot, there wasn't a whole lot of storyline heading into the Survivor Series... worth mentioning. You had the sudden regenerated program between Bret and Shawn Michaels, plus Owen and Austin were fighting for the Intercontinental Title, stemming from Owen injuring Austin at SummerSlam with a botched Tombstone.

- I would like to note this show has evolved into being called "WWF New York" (not the night club) with a horribly generic, family friendly opening, but I'm still filing it under Shotgun since I'm positive other markets still called it Shotgun outside of New York and the ring apron says Shotgun. Jim Ross and Jim Cornette are calling the action for us. Jim Cornette was famous for his "rants" at the time, putting the bad mouth on not only the competition, but also the WWF as well. His opinion on the Age in the Cage anti-classic was especially wonderful.

The Headbangers vs. The Godwinns:

(Mosh & Thrasher vs. Henry O. & Phineas I. Godwinn)
The Godwinns turned heel sometime during the summer, no doubt fueled by Henry nearly being killed by the LOD, and the Headbangers are just whatever. Both teams had title reigns during the Fall, and both of their reigns lasted all of a month (or less). We get clips of the Godwinns and (not yet named) New Age Outlaws assaulting the (no longer) New Blackjacks. Smell the Survivor Series tension! We return from the recap with the match already in progress, as we see Henry pounding away on Thrasher. Thrasher turns the tables, but runs into an elbow charging into the corner. Phineas tags in and, you guessed it, pounds away. They fight over a wristlock, won by Thrasher, and Mosh tags in, connecting with a clothesline. Mosh stomps away, then chokes Phineas across the middle rope. Thrasher tags in for some double team action. Mosh to the top rope, and he crashes down with an axehandle across the back. Irish whip, and Henry pulls the ropes down on Mosh, causing him to spill to the floor. Phineas hangs Mosh across the top rope, then drags him back in the ring for some punishment. Double elbow from the Godwinns, followed by a slam and elbow drop by Henry for a two count. Irish whip, and Mosh with a boot to the chest of Phineas, followed by a clothesline. Thrasher gets the mild tag and hammers away. Irish whip, and Thrasher with a back drop, then a shot to Henry sleeping on the apron. Whip to the corner, and Thrasher with an avalanche for a two count. Mosh dropkicks Henry out of the ring, and Thrasher rolls up Phineas for the three count at 4:47. Henry charges back in and wipes Mosh out, and we get Slop Drops to both Bangers. I guess it's better to be an evil Hillbilly instead of a fun loving babyface Hillbilly, right... right!? * Not much to speak of, but they've put on worse matches together, I guess.

- We recap the devestation left by the monster known as Kane. Clips are shown of him taking out Dude Love with a chokeslam on the ramp, spurring the return of Mankind, offering a challenge to Kane for a match at the Survivor Series. Sgt. Slaughter, the acting Commissioner of the WWF, refuses to sanction such a match. Mankind: "What if I said please?" Slaughter still says no, so Mankind gives Slaughter the mandible claw. The match is ON like Donkey Kong. In all honesty, at the time, I thought Mankind, or Mick Foley, whatever you want to call him, was done by being fed to the new monster. Mankind did all of his big moves, and Kane no-sold all of it, and beat him decisively, when the Undertaker never could.

- We run down part of the Survivor Series card (brought to you by Milton Bradley's Karate Fighters, and no, I don't mean the baseball player), including the previous mentioned match, an Intercontinental Title match between champion Owen Hart and Steve Austin, and Team USA (Vader, Marc Mero, Goldust, and the Patriot) takes on Team Canada (Bulldog, Neidhart, Furnas, and LaFon) in Survivor Series Elimination Action. We will also ignore that only 25% of Team Canada is, in fact, Canadian.

Chainz (w/ The Dicyples of Apocalypse) vs. Rekon (w/ The Truth Commission):

It's time for some Gang War Action! For those who need a refresher course, Faarooq fired Crush and Savio Vega from the Nation, and replaced them with Kama Mustafa and Ahmed Johnson (yes, that makes no sense). Crush went back to his roots and formed a biker gang known as the DOA with Chainz (Brian Lee), 8-Ball and Skull (the Harris brothers, formerly known as the Blu and Grimm Twins). Savio Vega formed a Latino group known as Los Boricuas with the human chia pet Miguel Perez, along with two other guys who were so bland I can't remember their names. I think they were Jesus and Jose, knowing WWF's stereotypes with names. Once those three stables fought a bunch of times, with the DOA acting as default faces, the Truth Commission debuted, a South African militant stable consisting of a giant named The Interrogater (later named Kurrgan), Sniper, and Rekon (eventually known as Bull Buchanon). They were originally led by some Commadant, but was soon replaced by the Jackyl (Don Callis), who Jim Ross constantly refered to as the David Koresh of the WWF. And now you're caught up with all that nonsense. These two stables are set to meet at the Survivor Series, as well.

Slugfest to start, won by Chainz. He used to be Ted Dibiase's fake Undertaker and is shorter than Rekon. Yeah, that was so believable. Chainz with a sidewalk slam for a two count. I think every fall ended with a sidewalk slam at the Survivor Series in the match between these two stables. Chainz misses a charge, and Rekon takes him over with a back drop. Rekon talks smack to Crush and tosses Chainz's headband at him. Rekon counters a back drop and drops Chainz with a spinning heel kick. It was crappy, but it counts. Snapmare and boot to the back by Rekon, followed by a chinlock. Whip to the corner, and Rekon misses a charge. Chainz with a series of roundhouse rights. Irish whip, and Chainz with a back elbow, followed by a series of elbow drops and a boot to the face, sending Rekon out in front of the D.O.A. Everyone brawls and Interrogater rams Chainz into the ring post. Rekon rolls back in the ring and covers for the three count at 3:23. The D.O.A. manage to clear the ring of all the lesser pushed guys in the stable, while Interrogater hangs around outside the ring. DUD I think my explanation of the Gang WarZ took longer to type than the actual match. Yes, the Survivor Series match ended up stinking the place up.

- Last Monday on The War Zone... Bret Hart was in action with Ken Shamrock, the World's Most Dangerous Man, and owner at the time for biggest bust in a MMA PPV Main Event. Bret Hart taps to the Ankle Lock, but the referee didn't see it, so Bret cracks Shamrock across the back with a steel chair. Bret slaps on the sharpshooter, and now Shawn Michaels hits the ring and hits Bret with Sweet Chin Music. Shamrock wakes up and snaps, then takes Michaels down with a belly-to-belly suiplex and beats the tar out of him, making him my favorite wrestler for the moment. Memebers of D-X and the Foundation come to check on their own kin while Shamrock looks on like a maniac. I can't believe they never really put much faith in Shamrock to do more than mediocre midcard stuff.

- We get a sales pitch for the new Stone Cold T-Shirt. I miss the time when Austin was the coolest person around, at least to a dorky wrestling fan. We then get an advertisement for Bret Hart to appear on MadTV. They do this by having one of MadTV's untalented comedians doing imitations of Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage. Yes, because those imitations were money for the WWF about 18 months earlier.

TAKA Michinoku & Scott Taylor vs. "Too Sexy" Brian Christopher & Tajiri:

For some reason, Sunny does the ring introductions. I thought they trotted her out for the midget matches... oh well, as if Vince McMahon knew the difference between the two classes anyway. We still don't have a Light-Heavyweight Champion, despite the division starting up roughly 4 months prior to this show. Taylor and Christopher lock-up, with Christopher taking Taylor over with an arm drag. Christopher with a knuckle lock, but Taylor escapes and brings Christopher down with a head scissors, followed by a dropkick. TAKA tags in and they take Christopher over with a double arm drag. Tajiri tags in, and they lockup. Tajiri sweeps the leg and slaps on a modified surfboard. TAKA counters into a wristlock, then turns it into an armbar. Tajiri counters with a head scissors, and connects with a spinning heel kick. To the outside we go, and Tajiri with an Asai moonsault! TAKA counters a suplex back into the ring and dropkicks Tajiri outside, then comes flying off the top rope with a cross body up the entrance aisle. Christopher sneaks in and slaps on a full nelson, allowing us some heel miscommunication! TAKA rams Tajiri to the corner, and plants him with a Tornado DDT for a two count. Irish whip, and TAKA slaps on a sleeper hold. Christopher comes in and nails TAKA with an axehandle. Tajiri with some skilled feet exhibition before tagging out to Christopher. Whip to the corner, and he takes TAKA over with a vicious German suplex. Irish whip, and TAKA responds with a hurricanrana. Taylor and Tajiri tag in, and Taylor slugs away. Irish whip, and Taylor with a sunset flip kick to the back of the head. Taylor with a spinning heel kick to Christopher, sending him out of the ring, followed by a clothesline to Tajiri. Double suplex by TAKA and Taylor on Tajiri. Irish whip, and Michinoku Driver ends it at 5:41. ** Fun and energetic, nothing wrong with that combination. Keeping Brian Christopher to the bare minimum didn't hurt, either. After the match, Christopher attacks Tajiri, and gives him the move Jeff Jarrett would call "The Stroke."

- Jim Cornette with one of his "That's my Opinion" rants about people calling themselves the Icons of Wrestling. Cornette takes shots at Shawn Michaels for his attitude, Bret Hart for his whining, and Randy Savage for being, well, old. Then he really chews into Hulk Hogan and Roddy Piper for their "greatest cage match in history." Cornette compliments the rest of the PPV, but is embarrassed by the "match" these two put on, embarrassed by Piper, someone he looked up to growing up, being a shell of what he used to be, and by Hogan, who was just riding the waves of his long gone fame that garnered media attention during the mid-late 80's and early 90's. He then name drops people like the Undertaker, Ric Flair and Steve Austin for being true icons. Cornette: Hogan, you are a household word, but so is garbage, and it stinks when it gets old too. To be honest, I loved these for the truthful attitude towards the subjects, but at the same time... what was the point? He's bashing WCW, but also his own company, and it never really went anywhere.

Oh wait, did this lead into that HORRIBLE "NWA" thing where Jim Cornette formed a stable consisting of Jeff Jarrett and his super goofy space invader outfit, Barry Windham, and the Rock 'n' Roll Express? Please tell me no, and it was all a coincidence.

The Patriot (w/ Goldust & Marlena) vs. Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart (w/ The British Bulldog):

I don't think this one is going to be very pretty. Anvil was never much of a singles wrestler, and the Patriot (Del Wilkes) had a hard time having a good match with Bret Hart, so I'm not too stoked, and hey, remember when the Patriot used the theme music that everyone associates with Kurt Angle? Goldust is in Patriot's corner, so I guess the on-air break-up of Goldust and Marlena didn't happen until the next episode of Raw. Anvil misses a charge to the corner and Patriot rolls him up for a two count. Patriot with a wristlock, then turns it into an armbar. Neidhart counters with a slam, but Patriot holds onto the hold. Irish whip, and Patriot puts Neidhart down with a clothesline, then goes back to the armbar. Neidhart with a headlock, then Patriot counters. Irish whip, and Bulldog trips the Patriot up, allowing Neidhart to attack from behind. Neidhart with a snapmare, and he jerks the Patriot around with a handful of mask. That's one tight mask for him to do that. Bulldog with more cheap shots, but the referee is too occupied by Goldust for some reason. Neidhart chokes away on Patriot in the corner. Patriot tries fighting back, but Neidhart pulls a Zoidberg and takes a bite out of the flag on Patriot's mask.

We go to a commercial for some crappy WWF Figures. I think they recycled those Austin and McMahon's for the free give-away for ordering the 1999 Royal Rumble. I remember, cause I actually sent in for them. We return from commercial, and Patriot floors Neidhart with a clothesline. Patriot with mounted punches in the corner, followed by a snap suplex. Patriot sends Bulldog to the floor, then comes off the top with the Patriot Missile, but Bulldog pulls him off of Anvil. Goldust comes around and nails the Bulldog for his interference. Patriot and Neidhart bang heads and they both go down. Neidhart grabs Marlena's purse, but Goldust takes it back. The Patriot uses it on Neidhart, but throws it AT THE REFEREE, who examines it to reveal a brick, and Disqualifies the Patriot at 5:45. Well, that sucked. * Match was okay, but what a lame finish. Did you really have to protect the Patriot or Jim Neidhart from jobbing?

- MB Karate Fighters Tournament! This week, it's Jerry "The King" Lawler taking on Brian Christopher. Is that Bruce Prichard and Vince Russo dressed up as Vince McMahon and Lawler, doing horrible "comedic" commentary? It's funny to think that the best sponsors the WWF can get for their PPV's were KARATE FIGHTERS.

- Clips from the Nassau Colisem, last Friday Night. Ken Shamrock gives a Boricua a hurricanrana! The LOD battled D-Generation X! Dude Love smacks Davey Boy with a bag full of popcorn! Austin gives Davey Boy a Stunner! The Undertaker was victorious in his match with Bret Hart, but could not capture the WWF Championship! The WWF will be at Madison Square Garden on November 15th. In a fatal four way, it'll be Steve Austin, The Undertaker, Bret Hart, and Shawn Michaels in Action... wait a minute. That's BULLSHIT. The WWF knew already Bret was done at Survivor Series, before a screw-job was the real final curtain. How could they blatantly promote this match knowing this, and all the smart fans knowing it as well? Anyway, the rest of the card looks like this: Legion of Doom defending the Tag Titles against Owen and Davey Boy, Vader with George Steele in his corner, taking on Triple H. NYC Street Fight between Ahmed Johnson, who turned face again, and Faarooq. Ken Shamrock takes on Rocky Miavia in a No Holds Barred match, and Mick Foley battles Miguel of the Boricuas. See what I mean? Foley was wrestling A BORICUA at MSG instead of an important match.

Final Thoughts: Not a whole lot of great wrestling, which should be considered normal for any show, especially the B-List shows, but it was pretty enjoyable to sit through. We got to see a diverse amount of the roster at the time, the matches were kept short to keep them from being boring, and the recaps used were important and kept to a minimal. I also love the feel of hyping up the local card, because I grew up in New York and fondly remember the Event Center hyping shows at MSG and Nassau Coliseum.

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