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.
With the first WWE Pay-Per-View held in Canada since WrestleMania VI five years prior, the “In Your House” series continued to invade the houses of professional wrestling fans in the 90’s, giving us trademark mid-90’s WWE – outlandish characters, strong emphasis on promos and athleticism in the tag team and main event matches.
Compared to some of the past IYH’s, this show ranked up in the better half, with a fast-paced two hours with some riveting matches, nothing ever getting slow or boring, even though some of the overbooked finishes were questionable.
All on that below.
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.