Welcome to another edition of Seanomaniac Wrestling Reviews, the only wrestling review series on the internet that will never preach toxic positivity! It’s WWF Mind Games where Shawn Michaels defends his WWF Championship against the deranged Mankind who has vanquished The Undertaker for now and with Paul Bearer at his side, I don’t know if Mankind can be stopped. Rounding out the card we have Undertaker vs Goldust again? But why? Jerry Lawler vs Mark Henry is happening so I guess that makes sense why Lawler beat Jake The Snake Roberts but I am not too thrilled about that match and The Smoking Gunns vs British Bulldog & Owen Hart? Have we finally put to the rest Phineas’ obsession with Sunny? Thank God if that’s true but you know the story by now In Your House PPVs are usually more digestible than the overblown big WWF PPVs so this has a strong chance of being better than Summerslam but that’s not saying much!
(Caribbean Strap Match) Justin Hawk Bradshaw W/ Dirty Dutch Mantel vs Savio Vega
Oh lord really? Savio sprints to the ring looking to beat up Bradshaw who whips Savio over and over, big strap shots to the throat. Bradshaw has the strap around Savio’s neck, huge toss across the ring. More whipping from Bradshaw, Savio stops Bradshaw from winning. Huge ECW chants ring throughout the arena, Bradshaw is pulled into the ring-post twice. Massive strap shot from Savio, Sandman tosses beer on Savio. Dreamer and Sandman are held back by Heyman, very interesting what could this all mean? Bradshaw applies a sleeper with the strap before transitioning to a headlock. Three buckle touches before Savio stops the big man in his tracks with a belly to back suplex. Bradshaw is waffled with the strap over and over, Bradshaw screams out in pain over and over.
Savio touches three but Bradshaw is determined to stop Savio and Bradshaw does just that. Savio is up first, clothesline and make it two from Savio. Spinning Heel Kick from Savio, Bradshaw stops Savio from winning with a mighty pull and a big boot. Clothesline from Hell, Bradshaw touches three but Savio has also touched three before being pulled into the fourth buckle.
Same finish I have seen in every single one of these stupid matches, one guy touches without the other noticing and boom they win with 4 touches to 3. The concept is dumb, the match is dumb and this is not a hot opening match just like Savio at Summerslam.
Winner: Savio Vega over Justin Hawk Bradshaw via Touching The Four Buckles!
Jim Cornette vs Jose Lothario
Cornette has been knocked on his ass multiple times by the manager and trainer Shawn Michaels so now they will be fighting in this ring tonight. Cornette is confident against the 62 year old Jose Lothario. Cornette is decked seconds into the match, a huge slap from Jose. Jose and throat thrust before Cornette begs for mercy, Jose yanks Cornette to the middle of the ring. Cornette is bounced off the buckle twice and a right hand knocks down Cornette. Big left hand and this match is over.
Wow I thought Cornette would do something to get some heat but Cornette gets slaughtered here and it was infinitely better than the actual opening match. Cornette takes big bumps and puts over Jose Lothario, not a problem with it at all.
Winner: Jose Lothario over Jim Cornette via Left Hand!
(WWF Tag Team Championship Match) Owen Hart & The British Bulldog vs The Smoking Gunns © W/ Sunny
Sunny is paired with Faarooq but is still here with The Smoking Gunns, a heel vs heel match is not exactly my idea of fun. If anything Bulldog & Owen come up as babyfaces messing up Sunny’s picture that she shows before each match. Clarence Mason is here to manage the challengers, Owen gets rolled up by Billy for two. Billy and Owen lock-up, arm-bar from Billy before Owen counters. Shoulder tackle from Billy, hip-toss and arm-drags from Owen. Flying crossbody for two, side headlock from Owen. Leapfrogs before Owen small packages Billy for two, boot by Billy and a tag to Bart. Scoop slam but Bart misses the elbow drop, tag to Bulldog.
Side headlock from Bart, shoulder tackle to Bulldog. Schoolboy from Bulldog before a massive dropkick and arm-bar. Tag to Owen, chop block from The King of Hearts. Owen wrenches the leg of Bart, Owen uses the ropes to batter the left leg of Bart. Tag to Bulldog, wishbone split from the challengers. Knee to the left leg from Bulldog, make it two. Tag to Owen, kicks to the both legs from The King of Hearts. Leg trip and foot crank from Owen before a big leg drop and an Indian death-lock from Owen. Boston crab from Owen, Bart grabs the ropes. Tag to Bulldog, delayed vertical suplex from Bulldog. Massive leg drop with Billy making the save, Owen cheap-shots Bart. Spinning toe hold from Owen, small package counter for two before Owen lands a massive enzuigiri with Billy making the save.
Tag to Bulldog, Irish whip with Billy assaulting Bulldog. Massive clothesline from Bart, Billy stomps Bulldog on the floor and sends Bulldog into the steel steps. Billy is in, massive flying fist in the corner. Tag to Bart, Bart hobbles over and tag to Billy. Sidewalk slam/diving leg drop combination from the champions, Mason distracts the referee with Owen landing a diving fist drop. Two for Bulldog, Billy stomps the life out of Bulldog before tagging Bart. Knee drops from Bart, tag to Billy. Face-rake from Billy, reverse chin-lock and shot to the head from Billy. Tag to Bart, Bulldog avoids the running powerslam. Billy shoves Bart, Bulldog lands The Running Powerslam while Owen wipes out Billy with a spinning heel kick.
Well both teams are heels and the crowd never really get behind Bulldog & Owen as babyfaces so we have this awkward match and again, the camera misses Sunny distracting Billy which leads to Billy shoving Bart. Happy for Owen and Bulldog as they are tremendously entertaining and Owen covers for Bulldog’s flaws. The match really was a whole load of nothing, didn’t leave any sort of impression on me. Sunny breaks up with The Gunns though, could Sunny be moving onto bigger and better things?
Winners: Owen Hart & British Bulldog over The Smoking Gunns via Running Powerslam!
Jerry Lawler vs Mark Henry
Lawler’s promos are always top-notch but the matches are trash, this is Henry’s first match in the WWF so this could be quite the match. Lawler stalls like every WWF match that Lawler has had at this point, side headlock from Lawler. Arm-wrench and shove from Henry, side headlock from Henry. Hammerlock counter from Lawler, hammerlock counter and shove from Henry. Henry picks up Lawler and gorilla press slams The King, shoulder block does not work for Lawler. Henry side-steps Lawler and Lawler suicide dives into the guardrail, Lawler reaches down into his tights and smashes Henry in the face three times. Henry starts to shake off the attacks of Lawler, massive knees from Henry. Massive chop to the head, make it two. Argentine back-breaker ad this match is over, another DUD from Lawler.
Winner: Mark Henry over Jerry Lawler via Argentine Back-Breaker!
(Final Curtain Match) Goldust W/ Marlena vs The Undertaker
Having defeated Mero at Summerslam, Goldust is in the sights of The Undertaker again. No slow-motion here with Taker uppercutting Goldust over and over, Irish whips to the opposite buckle. Massive leg drop from Taker, two for The Deadman. Goldust rolls to the floor, Goldust hot-shots Taker and Marlena slaps Taker. Bad idea as Taker Irish whips Goldust but Taker lowers the head, massive neck-breaker from Goldust. Uppercut from Taker, Irish whip and big boot. Suplex from Taker, old school from Taker. Goldust is tossed to the floor, Marlena hands some sort of purse to The Bizarre One. Marlena is lifted up by The Deadman but Taker does not hit her, Goldust throws powder into the eyes of The Deadman. Goldust chokes Taker and lands a big right hand on the outside.
Goldust shoves Taker’s eye into the steel steps, Goldust hammers away on Taker. Taker avoids a right hand from Goldust but eats a massive clothesline for two, Goldust hammers away at Taker in the corner. Boot to the face from Goldust, belly to back suplex from Taker to slow down Goldust. Hip-toss from Goldust for two, Goldust claws at the face of Taker again. Taker begins to fight back as Goldust piles on the pressure, Marlena is with the referee as Goldust kicks low and whips Taker to the buckle. Goldust taunts for too long, Undertaker throws Goldust to the corner. Rights and lefts from Taker, an uppercut floors The Bizarre One. Goldust sends Taker to the buckle, Taker comes out with an elbow before running into a powerslam.
Taker sits-up, Goldust is right on the attack with right hands. Goldust misses a clothesline, flying clothesline from The Deadman. Goldust is whipped to the buckle, Goldust boots away Taker and climbs high. Taker grabs Goldust by the throat, massive Chokeslam from the buckle. Tombstone Piledriver and this match is over, Taker wins!
Decent, I have seen these two mix it up three times on PPV during this year, Goldust is not blowing me away like The Natural Dustin Rhodes would in WCW, Goldust is heavy on character work and Taker and Goldust do not seem to have good chemistry with one another. I look forward to Taker’s feud with Mankind continuing as they are just meant for one another at this point with Taker not delivering with any other opponent. As for Goldust, it seems like squandered momentum, a lot of stops and starts for The Bizarre One.
Winner: Undertaker over Goldust via Tombstone Piledriver!
(WWF Championship Match) Shawn Michaels © W/ Jose Lothario vs Mankind W/ Paul Bearer
Makes sense for these two to meet with Mankind being the biggest heel in the company at this point after defeating The Undertaker, the Mandible Claw has been protected as a deadly finish that spells the end of anyone so this is quite the match. Side headlock from Michaels ends in an elbow from Mankind, Mankind stomps away at HBK. Irish whip, back-body drop from Mankind. Cactus Jack clothesline to the floor with Michaels being shoved into the guardrail. Mankind wastes no time ripping up the padding at ringside and Michaels dropkicks Mankind and buries the challenger under the exposed concrete. Michaels double-stomps Mankind and lands a diving crossbody onto the challenger, Michaels shoves Mankind down with Mankind’s head bouncing off the concrete.
Back in the ring, diving axe handle from HBK. Irish whip with Mankind reversing, Mankind misses a clothesline. Jabs and rights from Michaels, big clothesline brings down Mankind. Scoop slam, diving elbow drop from HBK. Mankind dives out of the ring to avoid Sweet Chin Music, Mankind looks to the turn for comfort. Mankind drags HBK to the corner, they both trade the advantage with right hands. Michaels is whipped to the buckle, they blow a spot before Michaels pummels Mankind in the middle of the ring. Mankind counters a snap-mare for a possible mandible claw attempt but HBK is blocking the attempt. Michaels is in top-mount pummelling away on Mankind, Mankind is kicked in the head twice before answering with a right hand. Michaels is tossed to the floor, Mankind grabs the Spanish announce table while Michaels dives over the table and crossbodies Mankind.
By the steel steps, Michaels suplexes Mankind into them. Seeing the damage that had been done, Michaels chop-blocks the ankle of Mankind. HBK drives the knee into the coffin that Mankind arrived in, Mankind is like a wounded animal. Massive stomp from Michaels, Mankind elbows his way back into the match. Right hand after right hand, Mankind gets caught in the dragon screw from HBK. Michaels applies a figure-four in the middle of the ring, mankind screams out in agony. Mankind reverses the hold, whipping Michaels who dropkicks the knee of Mankind. Michaels drops both knees onto the leg of Mankind, single leg Boston crab from the champion. Crucifix into a sunset flip for two, Mankind counters a hurricanrana by dropping Michaels throat-first on the rope.
Mankind has a pen and stabs himself in the leg to get the feeling back into it, right hands and running knee in the corner from the challenger. Mankind is countered with a belly to back suplex, Michaels slides through the legs and trips Mankind. Right hands, Michaels flips out of the corner into the tree of woe. Mankind lands his elbow to Michaels who is in the tree of woe, make it double. Leg drop from Mankind, HBK rolls to the floor laying by the steel steps. Mankind charges and hits his knee off the steel steps, HBK drop toeholds Mankind into the steel steps. HBK wants to suplex Mankind into the ring, they struggle over the suplex. Mankind lifts Michaels to the apron, Mankind charges for a clothesline but hits the ring-post.
Irish whip and flying elbow from Michaels, Mankind runs into a powerslam for two. Michaels ties up Mankind in the ropes, Mankind could pass out. Michaels sends Mankind to the floor after Mankind locks in the Mandible Claw in desperation. Mankind has the hold once more before Michaels pulls Mankind into the guardrail by the announcers. HBK has a chair, Mankind misses a punch hitting the chair and Michaels cracks Mankind with a chair-shot to the leg and head. Michaels bites the hand of Mankind and wrenches away at the arm, Michaels stomps on the fingers too for good measure. Stretching and pulling on the fingers, Mankind is helpless as HBK continues his attacks. Massive stomps on the hand of Mankind, Michaels is relentless in his attacks. Mankind back-drops HBK to the floor, Cactus Jack elbow drop to the floor.
Mankind follows up with a swinging neck-breaker on the concrete, Michaels tries to re-enter the ring but Mankind guillotine leg drops Michaels and plants the champion with a double arm DDT for a close two. Pulling piledriver from the challenger, close two again for the challenger. Mankind attempts multiple pins but Michaels will not stay down, Mankind is frustrated so the challenger grabs a steel chair. Make it two, Mankind opens the casket. What’s the plan here? Michaels fights back with right hands, Mankind reverses the Irish whip but is waffled with a flying forearm. Kip-up, Michaels stomps Mankind over and over, scoop slam and diving crossbody for two. Mankind crotches Michaels who was climbing to the top rope, Mankind wanted a super belly to back suplex through the table but Michaels counters with a crossbody in mid-air.
Mankind is somehow up, chair in hand while Bearer has the referee distracted. Michaels runs up a chair and Sweet Chin Musics the chair into the face of Mankind, Michaels covers but Mankind manages to kick out before Vader runs down into the match. Flying forearm from Michaels knocks Vader to the floor, Paul Bearer cracks Michaels with the urn. Sid and Vader are brawling in the ramp, Mandible Claw from Mankind on Michaels. From the casket emerges The Deadman who hurls Mankind to the floor, and that’s all she wrote.
Great entertaining match that Mick Foley would speak very highly of when talking about his favourite matches that he took part in, they work a very fast pace with Mankind taking the best parts of his brawls with Undertaker and applying them to the main event scene with HBK. I really enjoyed the finish too, it sucks when there is a DQ in a main event but I thought it was too soon to squash all this momentum that Mankind had built up, conquering The Undertaker and despite how the Summerslam match is viewed, Vader was very unlucky to get beaten by Michaels and won the match twice so I could see some sort of triple threat between the three possibly or something involving all these wrestlers because they are a lot of loose ends to be tied up. Anyways, this match is exciting and a sign of things to come in the WWF with the WWF edging closer into the beginning of an era that we would all become very familiar with in the next few years. Mankind and Shawn Michaels have a great match and it’s the only match worth watching on this PPV.
Winner: Shawn Michaels over Mankind via DQ!
That was WWF’s In Your House X: Mind Games, a one match show if I have ever seen one, the WWF continues to give me reasons not to care about their pay per views with matches that simply do not have that spark or creativity in them. Savio vs Bradshaw is like any strap match you have seen before, same finish and same overblown routine, no reason to watch. Lothario beats down Cornette in less than a minute, Cornette bumped well but not a match in this man’s mind. Owen & Bulldog vs Gunns is all about Sunny breaking up with The Gunns, it’s heel vs heel which is always a bad idea if you are not turning someone by the end of the match. As a result, they go through the motions, fans are unsure who to really believe in during the match and then it ends, not really interested in The Gunns break up but interested in Sunny with Faarooq.
Jerry Lawler vs Mark Henry is every WWF Lawler match that I have seen since 1993, Henry could be swapped with Roberts, Warrior, Piper or Bret. There’s no heat, Henry almost kills Lawler with a gorilla press slam at one point and it’s just not very good at all. Undertaker vs Goldust is the same match I have seen twice before, Goldust does not have the chemistry with The Deadman. It’s boring despite Goldust being a big man who could thrown around Taker we never get that we get plodding slow action that leads to a tombstone, I have seen it already this year, didn’t need to see it again. Finally, the main event is very good if not great, they tear the house down and you get some really nice work from both men. Mandible Claw is protected, Mankind is protected. Michaels works an interesting strategy stomping away at the hand, taking away Mankind’s finish. The bump to the floor is wild as is three or four other bumps Mankind takes in the match and the finish leaves thing open for rematches and you also have an exciting close to the show. Watch this only for the main event and you will be a happy wrestling fan, avoid everything else. Thanks for reading and remember: there’s always another night!