By Nicholas Jason Lopez
While its progression to realism from a cartoonish image was evident towards the latter half of 1996, the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) still struggled to shake control from its rival organization – World Championship Wrestling (WCW). WCW was in a stretch where it’d dominate television ratings for 84 consecutive weeks.
This show was peppered with potential from a standout opener between Leif Cassidy (now known as Al Snow) and Flash Funk (better referred to as 2 Cold Scorpio), a passable “Armageddon Rules” match from The Undertaker and The Executioner that went all over the arena/set and a good effort from its WWF Intercontinental Championship bout between Champion Hunter Hearst Helmsley and Marc Mero.
The rest was showered in shrouds of ridicule as enthusiastic as the sights of Fake Diesel and Razor Ramon on our screens. Even good ‘ol Jim Ross on commentary couldn’t do much for us. We’ll also investigate the ideological mess that was the WWF World Tag Team Championship match.
In the battle of “Powerbomb Vs. Sharpshooter,” powerbomb emerged victorious, but it was our collective brains that got powerbombed in the end.
You could tell how much the WWF needed a shakeup headed into 1997.
To top it off , the namesake of the show – Vader – wasn’t even on the card. Good riddance to WWF 1996.
In Your House 3 was mostly known for its unique “Tripleheader” main event, which was the WWE Tag Team Champions Owen Hart/Yokozuna fighting against WWE World Champion Diesel/WWE Intercontinental Champion Shawn Michaels, with every Title up for grabs, as whoever got pinned would lose their respective belt(s) to the person who pinned them.
The rest of the event was well… very 90’s. We saw glimpses of future failures (Savio Vega’s initial babyface run, Dean Douglas, the list goes on) and we also saw some breakthrough performances from the likes of The British Bulldog, Bam Bam Bigelow and Bret Hart.
Those of you who may remember this show best for the “World Premiere” of “Double J” Jeff Jarrett’s “Alone With My Baby Tonight” and surely enough, who could forget that lovely moment in history?
When it comes down to it, there was plenty of Double J on this show to go around. Pretty much dominated the show’s first half.
The best match on the show also involved Jarrett, so it’s a give-and-take situation. The rest of the night was characteristic of what was problematic with WWE in the mid-90’s. We’ll get into it below.
When you look at a show like this, it had all the characteristics of a typical mid-90’s WWE show: cartoonish gimmicks, cheesy promotions and a solid push of main-eventers.
This was the first installment of the “In Your House” monthly Pay-Per-View shows and for a first time, things were pretty good in terms of entertainment, as you had some decent storylines headed in, particularly the feud between Bret Hart and Jerry Lawler that was prominent here.
That said, we present this as the “Throwback PPV” of May 2015.