Hello and welcome to another edition of Seanomaniac Wrestling Reviews, the only wrestling review series on the internet that goes viral for all the wrong reasons! It’s WWF In Your House 12: It’s Time! Sounds more like Vader’s catchphrase than anything else but we have a main event that is Bret Hart vs Sycho Sid for the WWF Championship! Bret’s triumphant return at Survivor Series and his victory over Steve Austin has led The Hitman to this battle with Sycho Sid. We also have The Undertaker vs The Executioner to continue that feud and an Intercontinental Championship match! Should be an interesting show, you know the deal by now. Quicker PPV, hopefully more hard-hitting!
Leif Cassidy vs Flash Funk
2 Cold Scorpio joined the WWF as Flash Funk in late 1996 with a fun-loving gimmick. Scorpio tore it up in WCW and ECW before this with some of the best jaw-dropping, high-flying manoeuvres you have ever seen. This is a bit weird for me considering at Survivor Series there was no such big entrance for Funk but my god do they but over Funk as the coolest shit ever here before this match against Cassidy. Funk dances around Cassidy who ain’t happy about that just one bit, Cassidy takes the back with Funk reversing before Cassidy counters again. Elbow to the face from Cassidy, Funk flips his way out of the hold and drops a leg on the arm. Cassidy counters once more, Funk uses his agility to creatively counter Cassidy. Funk is on full-display here with both men wrestling a fast-pace looking good in the process but the crowd seems indifferent.
Funk whips Cassidy to the buckle, Funk flips to the apron. Middle rope crossbody goes wrong with timing issues, Funk wanted a headscissors from the corner but Cassidy powerbombs Funk to the mat. Cassidy winds up but Funk blocks the right hand, Cassidy lands two headbutts and belly to belly suplexes Funk to the floor. Cassidy lands a springboard somersault plancha to the floor, Cassidy runs the length of the aisleway and lands a clothesline. Funk is tossed into the ring, Cassidy lands a nasty dropkick to the back of the head. Reverse chin-lock from Cassidy, Funk escapes but Cassidy almost nails the powerbomb. Funk escapes with a big right, dropkick from Funk. Spinebuster ends that flurry, two for Cassidy.
Cassidy is going high and the springboard moonsault misses, Funk takes control with kicks and an uppercut. Eye rake from Cassidy, Cassidy misses a superkick and Funk lands a handspring enzuigiri. Funk lands a dive to the floor, the camera misses the whole thing. Scoop slam from Funk, beautiful moonsault for two. Funk rallies the crowd, spin-kick misses as Cassidy lands a clothesline. They trade pin-falls over and over, Funk lands an enzuigiri flattening Cassidy. Whip to the buckle, corner splash. Back suplex from Funk, Funk calls for his finish. 450 Splash from Funk for the win!
Good opening match with the crowd going from indifferent to caring by the time Funk went for the 450 Splash. Good competitive match too, it was Funk’s showcase but Cassidy got plenty in there too with both men making it appear like a contest as it should. Some of Funk’s antics looked a little suspect, no problem with dance inspired gimmicks or having fun but why did would Cassidy stand there as Funk danced in front of him? Doesn’t make sense to me but regardless, a positive way to kick off the show.
Winner: Flash Funk over Leif Cassidy via 450 Splash!
(WWF Tag Team Championship Match) British Bulldog & Owen Hart © W/ Clarence Mason vs Fake Razor Ramon & Fake Diesel
Heel vs Heel again? Can we not just have some babyface tag teams? Owen to take on Diesel, Diesel corners Owen. Elbows in the corner, Irish whip with Owen leap-frogging Diesel before Diesel shoves off Owen who was landing big rights. Owen looks on confused, Diesel shoves down Owen. Diesel lands a military press slam, two AAA wrestlers join us at ringside and want a piece of Bulldog. Owen is pissed at Bulldog for not focusing, Bulldog and Razor are in the ring now. Bulldog goes after Razor, headbutt after headbutt with Razor being rocked repeatedly.
Austin is here at ringside, Bulldog lands a flying crossbody but Bulldog cannot focus anymore. Bulldog is brawling with Austin, the referees are getting involved with officials coming in here. Austin wants a piece of Bulldog, the referee allows the match to continue. Razor lands his discuss punch on Bulldog, Bulldog basically no-sells it and brings it Owen who wrenches the arm over and over. Clothesline by Razor, Owen is roughed up on the outside by Diesel. Razor smashes Owen off the buckle before working the arm, you think Razor would work the ribs. Knee to the spine, big stomp from Razor. Diesel comes in with huge kicks, sidewalk slam from Diesel. Tag to Razor, pump-handle toss from Razor.
Two for Razor, reverse chin-lock from Razor. Owen escapes but Razor swats down Owen, tag to Diesel who misses an elbow drop before booting Bulldog and tagging Razor. Razor is rocked by Owen’s right hands before Diesel drags Owen to the corner. Irish whip with Owen blocking with an elbow and then a boot, enzuigiri from Owen. Bulldog comes in, right hands to Razor. Massive clotheslines to both, noggin-knocker. Scoop slam and leg drop on Razor, two for Bulldog. Suplex for two, Diesel breaks it up with Owen in there too. Owen and Diesel spill to the floor, Razor and Bulldog are in the ring. Razor misses a corner splash, Running Powerslam is countered. Razor was going for The Razor’s Edge but Owen lands a spinning heel kick and Bulldog jacknife-covers for the pin.
Well there is a lot of confusion about this one for me personally, I am not sure where Clarence Mason goes or does with this group as Camp Cornette imploded long ago, I am also confused by this heel vs heel match dynamic because yeah, it happened a lot in The Attitude Era but this is the second time this has happened with Owen & Bulldog battling The Smoking Gunns last time. So what do you get? You get a match where the fans cheer Bulldog & Owen in a half-hearted manner before the match ends, thank God Bulldog & Owen are so good.
Winners: Owen Hart & British Bulldog over Fake Diesel & Fake Razor Ramon via Spinning Heel Kick!
(WWF Intercontinental Championship Match) Hunter Hearst Helmsley © vs Wildman Marc Mero W/ Sable
Helmsley is champion, Mero is the challenger. Helmsley has been in the doghouse for a number of months, maybe things are changing. Mero and Helmsley trade holds with Mero gaining control. Cheers at ringside for Sable, both men trading control still. Shoulder block from Mero, Helmsley backs up. They blow a number of spots before we get back on track with a hip-toss, dropkick and clothesline from Mero. Apron axe handle from Mero, whip to the buckle and back body-drop from Mero. Helmsley shows resiliency by flap-jacking Mero into the buckle. Helmsley looks for the pedigree but Mero back-drops Helmsley to the floor. The champion hides behind Sable before blind-siding Mero with a massive right. Mero is whipped hard into the steel steps, Sable cheers on the challenger.
The official stops Helmsley from using a chair, tilt-a-whirl back-breaker from Helmsley for two. Abdominal stretch from the champion, Helmsley cheats and pushes Earl Hebnar. Hebnar pushes back Helmsley, Mero sends Helmsley to the buckle but Helmsley counters with his boot. Helmsley takes too long though and eats a boot to the face, inverted atomic drop from Mero. Mero ducks a clothesline and lands a flying clothesline. Right hands from Mero, Helmsley flips out of the buckle into a knee-lift. Head-scissors from Mero for two, Mero lands a top rope hurricanrana. Dramatic camera-shift what happened, Mero was going to go for The Wild Thing but Helmsley shoves Hebnar into the ropes causing Mero to tumble to the mat.
Call-back to a finish from one of their earlier matches results in Mero landing his Merosault for two, Mero clotheslines the referee by mistake. Neck-breaker from Helmsley, Helmsley grabs his championship. Mero blocks with a boot, right hands floor Helmsley. Helmsley is rolled up but there is no referee, the referee comes back to life for a close two. Helmsley takes a tumble to the floor, tope con hilo from Mero. Goldust is here, Goldust clocks Mero and Helmsley, is this the night of interference? Mero beats the ten-count and wins by count-out but Mero is not done and Mero wants to hit The Wild Thing.
I am not a huge Mero fan, it just hasn’t clicked with me despite the number of matches I have seen at this point. Mero can be exciting, Mero can be interesting and Helmsley is a good enough opponent to carry Mero but this match was nothing special and another match tainted with interference. That would be two back to back and it’s such a flat finish to the match. However, what really terrifies me is the possibility of a triple threat between these three!
Winner: Marc Mero over Hunter Hearst Helmsley via Count-Out!
(Armageddon Rules Match) The Undertaker vs The Executioner W/ Paul Bearer
Undertaker looks for revenge against the man who attacked him with a shovel and saved Paul Bearer from the hands of Taker. The Executioner’s outfit is utterly ridiculous and I love it, Taker pummels Executioner. Back body-drop, Irish whip and boot by Taker. Executioner is whipped to the buckle, Executioner is tied in the tree of woe with Taker stomping away on Executioner. Taker takes his eyes off the balls and Executioner comes into the match before Taker lands a scoop slam. Executioner dodges the elbow drop, clothesline to the floor but Taker lands on his feet. Bearer cracks Taker with the urn, no effect but Executioner’s clubbing blows work. Mankind chop-blocks Taker, it-s two on one here now.
Taker eats a clothesline but sits-up, Taker pummels both Executioner and Mankind. Mankind is thrown through the set, the camera man catches Mankind falling through the door. Mankind and Executioner continue to batter Taker though, Taker fights and fights and we have security in the ring who have pepper-sprayed Mankind. Taker and Executioner are brawling backstage, Mankind is tied up in a straight-jacket at ringside and Taker makes his way back to pummel Mankind. Clothesline from Taker, Tombstone Piledriver. It’s over.
Yeah Taker dominated this one, not even with Mankind by his side did Executioner look like he had a chance, odd to view a Taker match as mindless filler but that’s what it comes off as here, that feud must be over then? I feel it should not, Taker never got his hands on Paul Bearer but ok.
Winner: The Undertaker over The Executioner via Tombstone Piledriver!
(WWF Championship Match) Sycho Sid © vs Bret Hart
Go time! Big point before the bell even rings, Bret Hart is cutting a promo and Shawn Michaels’ music interrupts The Hitman, The Hitman who is calm and collected usually, flies off the handle and says he’s “sick to death” of Shawn Michaels.
Bret jumps Sid, right hands from The Hitman. Stomps to the ribs, headbutt and gut punches, Sid is rocked early on in this match before Sid sends Bret to the buckle and lands a clothesline. Scoop slam by the champion, running boot to the back. Bret rakes the eyes and begins brawling back into this one, Sid’s face is raked off the ropes. Gut punch and snap-mare by Bret, elbow to the nose from The Hitman. Headbutt to the groin, Sid begins brawling back into this one with Sid grabbing Bret as Bret tried to out-run the monster. Bret hammers away on Sid in the ring before Sid dumps Bret to the floor. Sid rips the protective mats, Bret blocks a potential powerbomb and rams Sid into the ring-post three times.
Bret drops a middle rope axe handle, knees to the spine from the challenger. Back-breaker from The Hitman, elbows to the spine from Sid. Modified camel clutch from Bret, whip to the buckle and elbows from Bret. Snap-mare and a leg drop from Bret, Bret headbutts Sid down and stomps him in the corner, Bret exposes a steel turnbuckle behind the referee’s back. Sid blocks being rammed into the buckle but eats a beautiful belly to back suplex, two for the challenger. Suplex by Bret, Bret’s Rope Elbow Drop for two. Bret is running through all his attacks, working on the back of Sid. Sid keeps coming back though, Sid yanks Bret off the top rope. Big right hands from Sid and a big boot, powerslam for two. Short-arm clothesline by Sid, Sid misses his next attack though allowing Bret to try a sharpshooter but Sid shoves off Bret.
Austin is here, chop-block by Austin. The same attack that took out Bulldog, Bulldog comes out here to attack Austin. It’s a clusterfuck, Bret cannot stand on his leg, The Hitman is hobbling around the ring with Sid not sure of what happened. Sid clubs down Bret, Bret is sent into the exposed buckle (they repeat the spot after blowing it the first time). Chokeslam from Sid for two, Bret dodges a clothesline from Sid and clotheslines Sid to the floor, both tumble to the floor. Bret takes the chair from HBK at ringside, Sid smashes Bret in the back. Sid and HBK lock eyes, nothing happens at first. Sid pie-faces HBK, this will lead to only one thing, Sid whips Bret into Michaels and this allows Sid to nail his Powerbomb for the win!
Interference seems to be the theme of the night but this was a lot of fun, Bret’s psychology is perfect as per usual, Bret goads Sid into making a mistake, attacking the big man from behind, trying to frustrate him into making that big mistake. It pays off as Bret dominates, cracking the back of Sid on multiple occasions. Austin comes out turning the tide of the match with a massive chop-block and once HBK is involved, it all falls apart for The Hitman. Bret attacks HBK after the bell, we are so close to Bret turning full-heel and I am all for it, The Hitman is being screwed constantly so makes all the sense in the world for Bret Hart to snap. Solid end to the pay per view with plenty of intrigue built for what happens next!
Winner: Sycho Sid over Bret Hart via Powerbomb!
That was WWF’s In Your House 12: It’s Time! A PPV that borders on average or slightly below, you have three championship matches with nothing of significant par the main event. Cassidy and Funk have a very competitive match which should have set the tone for the night but most of what followed was disappointing or going through the motions. Not a fan of heel vs heel unless someone is turning and believe me, it won’t be Owen Hart or British Bulldog so it’s awkward and the challengers have an awful gimmick to try and overcome which simply won’t be happening. Mero vs Helmsley was fine, nothing special and the finish reflects that, Undertaker vs Execution felt like an extended squash. Happy for the two to get a payday but nothing of note there while the main event is a solid match with great story-telling after the final bell. Bret Hart and HBK are destined to collide, they despise one another while Sid continues to collect victims as a dominant WWF Champion. Something has to happen, what will it be? That’s the end of 1996 and it’s brighter than 1995 for sure but will 1997 bring more success? Join me next time to see, thanks for reading and remember: there’s always another night!