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Attitude Era Classics: WWF Survivor Series 1997

WWF Survivor Series

November 9th 1997

Molson Centre, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

Announcers: Jim Ross & Jerry Lawler

Attendance: 20,593

Buy-rate: 0.89

The 1997 Survivor Series will forever be remembered as the most controversial pay per view in WWE history. This is because of the ending of the WWF title match between Shawn Michaels & Bret Hart. This is often referred to as “The Montreal Screwjob”. How did it come about? At Wrestlemania 12, “the boyhood dream came true” for Shawn Michaels after he defeated Bret for the title, Bret took 6 months off to rest (he was originally going to shoot a TV show but it got cancelled). The idea was for the two to have a series of matches for the title and in the end; Bret will embrace Shawn and put him over. Shawn had a difficult run as champion as business in the WWF was poor.

Bret returned in November ’96 and Shawn was still the top babyface. Shawn forfeited the title due to a knee injury and that he had “lost his smile”. In Bret’s view, Shawn didn’t want to put Bret over at Wrestlemania 13 where a re-match was to take place. With Shawn out injured, Bret turned heel at Wrestlemania and had a unique gimmick where he was heel in America but a babyface everywhere else. Shawn ‘recovered’ from his injury. Although they weren’t directly feuding, they began to take shots as each other on air. According to both guys, they were encouraged to do this and despite making it personal (Bret called Shawn gay because of his dancing and intro) it was done professionally. This all came to an end when Shawn suggested that Bret was having some “Sunny Days”, meaning that he was having an affair with WWF Diva, Sunny (Sunny has said in many shoot interviews that she’d wouldn’t dream of doing such a thing and considered Bret a close friend). Bret felt that Shawn crossed the line and this lead to a fist fight between the two. Shawn walked out and threated to quit the company.

Even though there was genuine hate between the two, they worked together at Summerslam where Shawn was the ref for Bret’s title win over the Undertaker, making Shawn heel just like Bret. Shawn & Undertaker headlined the next two pay per views whiles Bret, who was the champion, was treated like an afterthought and had to put up with a lame feud with The Patriot. Shawn also won the European title off Davey Boy Smith at One Night Only, a UK exclusive event, this infuriated Bret as he felt Shawn had a lot of influence in the booking of this match. In 96, Bret signed a 20 year contract where he’ll receive $1million per year but Vince McMahon told Bret that he could no longer pay him that much due to on-going financial problems the company was experiencing.  A re-match was signed for Survivor Series between Bret & Shawn. Bret mentions in his book that he spoke to Shawn and told him that he had no problem putting him over if that’s what McMahon wanted. Shawn thanked him but told him that he’s not prepared to do the same for him, which lead to Bret saying that he’ll not put Shawn over at Survivor Series. It’s worth pointing out that Bret had a creative clause in his contract meaning that he had full control over his bookings.

November 1st 1997, 8 days before Survivor Series, Bret signed for WCW for $3million per year although he has gone on record to say that he wanted to stay out of loyalty. With Survivor Series coming up, no one knew what the finish was going to be. Vince feared that if Bret refused to lose the title, he could show up on Nitro with the WWF title. The issue was very real and no one knew what was going to happen. I’ll talk more in depth about the outcome of the “screwjob” at the end of the show.

 

The opening video package focuses on the highly personal rivalry between Shawn Michaels and Bret Hart. The two men were unable to stand one another, both on screen and in reality at this point in time. We them head into the arena where our now regular announce team of Jim Ross & Jerry Lawler welcome us to the show. We also had a French ring announcer too.

 

The Headbangers (Mosh & Thrasher) & The New Blackjacks (Bradshaw & Windham) vs. The Godwinns (Henry & Phineas), Road Dogg & Billy Gunn.

The Godwinns are no longer tag champs here, having lost the belts to a team not in this match that I’ll get to later. As far as the face team go, the Headbangers have really had their brief moment in the spotlight coming off their previous title run, whilst the New Blackjacks never really had that moment to begin with. Hey at least the Bangers are still over. The real story here is the new team of Road Dog (formerly Jesse James) and Billy Gunn (Rockabilly) who were thrown together in the past few weeks with their singles careers not going anywhere at the time, when Rockabilly turned on his former mentor by smashing the Honky Tonk Man with his guitar. They don’t even have a team name yet, but they would go on to become the face of the tag division over the next year or so. The match is a very weak start to the show though, especially when the Godwinns and Blackjacks are in the ring as the crowd just does not care. Blackjack Bradshaw score the first elimination of the match as he eliminates Henry Godwinn within minutes following a roll up. The Godwinns get a measure of revenge on the Blackjacks a few minutes later though, as Phineas comes in and takes Barry Windham out with a clothesline. Mosh comes in and quickly ends up going at it with Billy Gunn, but Gunn wins that exchange as he counters a bulldog attempt by Mosh into a face plant to eliminate the Headbanger. Thrasher and Phineas now go at it as Lawler asks JR where Vince is. JR replies that he has no idea. Meanwhile Thrasher takes out Phineas with the Stage Dive to even the teams up once more. Road Dog comes in and plays the cowardly heel for a bit as he and Bradshaw get set to face off, but some heel teamwork by the future Outlaws turns the tables on the faces. Billy draws Bradshaw’s attention whilst Road Dog comes up from behind and quickly rolls Bradshaw up to score the cheap pin. With the match now two on one, Thrasher does his best to fight off his opponents, but he ends up falling to legdrop off the top from Gunn, which scores the victory.

Survivors: Road Dogg & Billy Gunn

Rating: *

The survivors were a new team on the block so it was necessary to put them over strong. They would end up as tag team champions before the year is over. The match itself however, was boring and not a good way to kick off a show.

 

The Truth Commission (Jackyl, Sniper, Recon & The Interrogator) vs. Disciples of Apocalypse (Crush, Chanz, Skull & 8-Ball)

Ah yes, the next phase of the Gang Wars. Since the Nation had moved on from the wars between the DOA and the Boricuas, of course we needed another group to join in the affray. That group was the Truth Commission, led by the Jackyl, a group comprised of South African soldiers or something of the like. The break out star of the group would be the massive Interrogator, but considering he didn’t even go very far that should tell you all you need to know. The DOA are still over, despite not being very exciting, although this is the end for their leader Crush, who would quit the WWF following the events later on in the night. I said that the opener was pretty basic, but this match was even worse. Little under a minute into the match, the Interrogator scores the first elimination of the match as he pins Chainz with a sidewalk slam to put the Commission at the early advantage. Skull comes in and evens things up by eliminating the Jackyl with the exact same move. Jackyl joins the commentary team following his elimination as Recon comes into the match and gets beat up. 8-Ball ends up taking him out with a clothesline shortly after. Sniper is in next and he evens things up by taking out Skull with a bulldog. There have been countless non-tags so far and the announcers are even ripping on the officiating by now. Crush comes in and beats on Sniper a little before tagging 8-Ball back into the match. Interrogator tags himself in and eliminates the other bald twin with a terrible looking sidewalk slam. Crush is now all on his own and he manages to fight off Sniper, eliminating him with a tilt a whirl slam, which again was executed incredibly sloppily. We finally get put out of our misery a few second later as Interrogator disposes of Crush with a sidewalk slam, ending his opponent’s WWF run.

Survivor: The Interrogator

Rating: ½ *

It was a refreshing change from “Los Boricuas vs. DOA” but my God was this bad! The Interrogator was booked to be a threat but his offence was poor. It just showed that he was pushed too quickly in an attempt to create new stars.

 

Up next, we hear from the fans regarding the main event between Shawn Michaels and Bret Hart. We then see Austin participating in an online chat backstage. He returns to action tonight.

 

Team USA v Team Canada is up next but before we get there, we hear from both teams. We first go to team USA in our next elimination tag match, led by Vader. Among others, he’s joined by newcomer Steve Blackman, who says that whilst he is nervous, he’s ready to defend his country. We then cross over to team Canada, led by the British Bulldog. They rip on America before promising victory tonight.

 

Team USA (Vader, Steve Blackman, Marc Mero & Goldust) /w/ Sable vs. Team Canada (British Bulldog, Jim Neidhart, Phil Lafon & Doug Furnas)

So here we come to what is effectively end of the US vs Canada feud that pretty much started right after Wrestlemania and reached its peak back at Canadian Stampede. We have a few returns to talk about here. First Furnas & Lafon, who have been out of action for the past few months following a car accident. They returned on Raw is War leading into this show, officially turning heel in the process by joining in on a beat down on Vader led by the Hart Foundation. We also see the return of Marc Mero, who has been out of action following an injury in February. He’s still a face here, but he’s becoming more and more heel like as the weeks go by, not being happy with Sable’s rising popularity in the company and becoming jealous of his valet. Speaking of heel turns, Goldust is also on the way there, having recently dumped his long time partner Marlena, claiming that their relationship was stopping him being the man he wanted to be. He would undergo a weird transformation over the next few months, but for now he is set to team with his fellow Americans. As for Blackman, he’s basically portrayed as a fan who jumped the rail to come to Vader’s aid against the Foundation on a recent episode of Raw. Of course, Team Canada would ordinarily be the heels here, but we are in Montreal so we have the reverse dynamic going on again as far as the crowd is concerned. Team America is using Patriot’s theme (or Kurt Angle’s theme as it would become). It’s worth pointing out that team Canada is made up of 2 Americans, 1 Englishman and 1 Canadian. Mero and Bulldog start this one out as we get going. We get a few combinations going at it in the early going, with the newcomer Steve Blackman coming into the match soon enough. JR quickly talks about Blackman not being used to this environment, and that proves to come into play as he ends up getting into a brawl with Furnas and Lafon on the outside, getting counted out in the process to become the first man eliminated in the match. With his team at the disadvantage, Vader comes in and hits the splash on Neidhart to even the score up shortly after. Vader continues to build momentum as he takes out Lafon with the Vaderbomb a few minutes later. Furnas comes in looking for revenge for his partner, but Vader tags Mero in. Furnas and Bulldog go at it with Mero for a bit, but Furnas ends up rolling up Mero to score the elimination. Mero leaves ringside with Sable in tow. Vader comes back in and goes at it some more, with Goldust still not having entered the match at all. Vader goes to tag him in, but the Bizarre One drops off the apron, causing Vader to get beat down some more. The Mastodon eventually has enough and slaps Goldust once he gets back on the apron, which constitutes a tag. Goldust decides to just walk out though, and he leaves Vader alone, getting counted out as JR is all over him for abandoning his partner and his country. Vader fights back and hits the Vaderbomb on Furnas to bring the match down to him and Bulldog. Bulldog immediately hits Vader with the ring bell without the referee seeing it and wins the match via pinfall for Team Canada. Bulldog quickly exits the ring. The look on his face suggests that he’s concerned about what’s going to happen with Bret in the main event tonight.

Survivor: The British Bulldog

Rating: ** ½

A decent match and a huge step up from the previous matches. The seeds were planted for the Vader/ Goldust feud due to Goldust’s lack of participation and costing his team the match. Marc Mero would begin to show signs of a heel turn after this match because he was growing jealous of the reactions Sable was receiving.

 

We now see a video package highlighting Kane’s path of destruction since arriving on the scene at our last PPV. We then hear from Mankind who vows to give this next match everything he has, even if it takes him out in the process.

 

Mankind vs. Kane /w/ Paul Bearer

So Kane obviously made his first appearance last month at Bad Blood, after months of hype from Paul Bearer. After laying out his brother the Undertaker with a tombstone on that night, Kane has been on a rampage for the past few weeks, interfering in random matches and beating the hell out of anybody that got in his path. This match is basically stemming from a recent attack that saw Kane destroy Dude Love with a chokeslam out of the ring. After spending the last few months in his fun loving persona, Foley reverted back into his Mankind character, looking for revenge here. The match itself is just a glorified squash designed to make Kane look strong. The whole match is wrestled with the red lights from Kane’s entrance still shining down on the ring, which was a cool look since they were still just building up the character here much like the lighting Sin Cara has for his matches. Having said that, getting rid of it in the long run was definitely the right call. This is a quick, stiff brawl, with Kane putting Mankind away with the tombstone piledriver.

Winner: Kane via pinfall

Rating: **

A glorified yet entertaining match, it’s surprising at just how much punishment Mick Foley was willing to take in order to make Kane look dominant. Taking a lot of punishment would be Foley’s trademark throughout the Attitude Era.  This did what it was supposed to do as Kane’s first proper match, establishing him as a dominant monster, so overall you can’t really complain too much about this one.

 

Backstage, Michael Cole is interviewing Vince McMahon and Commissioner Slaughter regarding the main event. Slaughter acknowledges the tension between Shawn Michaels and Bret Hart so he has hired extra security just in case things got out of hand. In a strange moment at the time, Michael Cole asks Vince “Who’s going to win?” Vince struggles to find the words before saying “I don’t know”. Did Michael Cole suspect something was going to happen? I don’t know but it was interesting hearing that knowing what was going to happen later on.

 

Following that we head to the face team in our final elimination tag match of the night. Shamrock and co say that they are ready to go to war with the Nation.

 

Nation of Domination (Faarooq, Rocky Maivia, D’Lo Brown & Kama Mustafa) vs. Ken Shamrock, Ahmed Johnson & Legion of Doom (Hawk & Animal)

First off I should mention the fact that the Legion of Doom are the new WWF Tag Team Champions, having defeated the Godwinns to finally end their long standing rivalry on an episode of Raw is War a few weeks before this show. Ahmed Johnson has turned face again following his brief run in the Nation of Domination and is once again feuding with the faction, because he never does anything else. Shamrock has also recently had issues with the Nation, and would go on to have a lengthy rivalry with Rocky soon enough. This Nation incarnation is far better than the original by the way, as I have said before, as despite Faarooq being the leader, its really here to get Rocky over as an effective heel. We see that push continue as Rocky scores the first elimination in this one within minutes as he hits the Rock Bottom on Hawk to take out on half of the tag champs from the match, putting the faces at the initial disadvantage. Of course Hawk kicked out right after the fall because he can’t look too weak despite his best days being long behind him. Speaking of men who have outlived their usefulness, Ahmed comes in next and cleans house. He goes at it with Faarooq and surprisingly takes out the Nation leader with the Pearl River Plunge, eliminating him from the match and effectively ending that feud for good. Johnson goes at it with D’Lo for a bit, but his moment in the spotlight doesn’t last too long, as Rocky comes in and eliminates the powerhouse when Faarooq, who is still at ringside, trips him up. Johnson and Faarooq brawl back up the ramp. Hey I guess that feud isn’t going to end after all. We now go for a few minutes with different rotations of guys as the crowd start to chant ‘Rocky sucks’. Animal and Kama end up fighting in the ring, but D’Lo intervenes and attempts to distract the remaining Road Warrior. Kama gets a kick in, but decides to show off for a bit, which ends up costing him as he falls to an Animal roll-up to be eliminated, evening the score up to 2 on 2. The remaining men continue to fight, as the Nation members use heel tactics behind the referee’s back. Animal gets the tag back in but Billy Gunn and Road Dog make their way back out to ringside wearing LOD armour. This results in Animal getting into a fight on the outside, with the future Outlaws throwing dust in his eyes. Unable to see, Animal ends up getting counted out and leaving Shamrock on his own. Rocky and D’Lo work over their opponent, but Shamrock comes back and locks in the ankle lock on Brown, leading to the submission elimination. With Rocky and Shamrock being the only men left the officials are preoccupied with getting D’Lo out of the ring. In true heel fashion, Rocky takes advantage by smashing Shamrock with a chair, but its not enough to keep him down. He builds momentum and eventually applies the ankle lock to cause Rocky to tap out.

Survivor: Ken Shamrock

Rating: ***

The best elimination match of the night. It established Shamrock as a threat to the Nation and took over Ahmed’s role as the main rival to the Nation for the next few months. Shamrock & Rocky would feud with each other throughout 1998. As I’ve mentioned many times before, the Legion of Doom were well past their prime and totally out of place too. Ahmed Johnson looked well knackered; his weight would balloon before being released in early ’98.

 

A video package plays recapping the Austin/Owen feud.

 

WWF Intercontinental Championship

Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. Owen Hart© /w/ British Bulldog/Jim Neidhart/ Doug Furnas & Phil Lafon

Just to recap, Austin defeated Owen back at Summerslam to win this title, but during that match a botched piledriver resulted in Austin suffering a career threatening neck injury, forcing the new champion to relinquish the title. Owen defeated Faarooq last month at Bad Blood to win a tournament to crown the new champion with the unlikely assistance from Austin, who revealed that he ensured that Owen won the title so that he could take it from him on his return. That return comes tonight, as the toughest SOB in the WWF competes in his first match since Summerslam. He gets a nice pop, although since we are in Canada, Owen manages to draw a louder ovation making his way down the aisle with the rest of Team Canada from earlier in the night. Neidhart attempts to jump Austin before the match, but gets a stunner for his efforts. Owen jumps his challenger and we get going. The match is very basic but thats understandable considering Austin’s injury was only three months prior. Austin fights back a starts stomping a mudhole in the champion, whilst Owen does his best to get intentionally disqualified to save his title. Austin rakes Owen in the eyes however and follows up with a Stunner on Owen to win the I.C title once more.

Winner and NEW WWF Intercontinental Champion: Stone Cold Steve Austin via pinfall

Rating: *

You can tell Austin has been rushed back into things as he’s quite limited in his mobility for this one. Obviously, this was all about Austin getting his revenge on Owen rather than the match itself. Austin would reinvent his style as an excellent brawler that would carry him to the top of the wrestling world.

 

We get a video promo hyping up the new “attitude era” that was being adopted by the WWF. This would be the first time we’ll see the new scratch logo. We now get a video package for our upcoming main event. Backstage we see Michaels with DX to some huge crowd heat. After he makes his entrance we also see Bret backstage with his son.

 

WWF Championship

Shawn Michaels vs. Bret “Hitman” Hart ©

Michaels charges him in the middle of the ring right away, but Bret comes back with punches. Clothesline sends Michaels to the floor. Face first into the post. They brawl into the crowd with Bret getting the upper hand. They fight around ringside where a bunch of referees show up, plus Commissioner Slaughter and Vince McMahon. JR mentions the speculation surrounding Bret’s future. It leaked on the internet and in the dirt sheets that he had signed with WCW, but obviously on WWF TV they never said that. Michaels whips him into the steps. He chokes Hart with a US flag. Now Michaels tosses him into the crowd. Hart backdrops him over the rail and onto the floor. They fight up the aisle, Hart gets another backdrop. JR says Vince is out there to try to get the match started. Suplex on the floor by Hart. The intensity in this match is about as real as any wrestling match you’ll ever see even though they worked snug as Hart said in his book. Most of the fight outside the ring is won by Hart. After about seven minutes of it, Hart tosses him in. Now the bell rings to officially start the match.Hart chokes Michaels with the Quebec flag to the approval of the crowd. Atomic drop for Hart. Michaels comes back with the flying forearm. He chokes Hart with the flag. Michaels is really jawing with fans in the front row. They go outside and he drops Hart with a face first suplex on the steps. He then beats on Bret with the pole of the Canadian flag. Back in the ring, double axehandle for Shawn and then a front facelock to slow it down. Bret powers out of it and then works over the knee with elbow drops. Michaels fights back with a bodyslam and a crossbody is countered into a two count for Hart. Time for my favorite move in all of wrestling: the figure four around the ring post by Bret Hart. I love that spot. He works over the left knee of Michaels and then sets him up for a figure four leglock right in the middle of the ring. He turns it over after about a minute and Hart grabs the rope to break it. Michaels does his flip into the turnbuckle, Russian legsweep gets two for Hart. Suplex gets two. Backbreaker for Hart. He goes up top, leaps off with a fist and Michaels pulls Hebner in front of it so that Hebner takes the blow. Cue ominous music…Michaels rakes the eyes. Hebner miraculously gets to his feet faster than any ref in the history of wrestling. Michaels spreads Hart’s legs and steps through with his right leg. He hooks his arm. He turns Hart over into the Sharpshooter. Hart reaches back with his right hand. While he’s doing this, Hebner is telling the timekeeper to ring the bell. We would learn later (although can’t see it on the broadcast) that Vince McMahon told the timekeeper to “ring the fucking bell” many times. This happened while Michaels was getting pushed onto his face with Hart trying to counter it. Hart was in the hold for maybe four seconds. The crowd’s response is utter shock. All JR can manage to say is “What happened?” a few times. Bret leans over the ropes and spits right in Vince’s face. Shawn, acting as if he is angry, grabs the belt and walks off with Hunter right beside him, as well as Gerry Brisco pulling him along. JR: “You talk about controversy. This crowd is livid. Michaels with a Sharpshooter has become champion. And Bret Hart is standing in disbelief.” I never realized it before, but Jerry Lawler never said anything after the surprise finish.

Winner and “NEW” WWF Champion: Shawn Michaels via “submission”

Rating: *** ½

The match is always overlooked in favour of what happened at the end but the match itself is actually very good. The brawling was intense and the spots were carefully timed and they were on their way to having a special match.

 

Bret Hart is standing in the ring with the rest of the Hart Foundation looking very dejected as we come to the end of the show.

 

My thoughts on the Screwjob

I always get upset whenever I think about the way Bret left the company. The planned finish was a double disqualification finish and then Bret would hand the title over to Vince the next night on RAW. That was the plan and Vince agreed to it. Bret would never have gone to WCW with the title. He didn’t want to bury Vince’s company like that; he had too much respect for the business to do that. Some people may argue that Bret was in the wrong not to drop the title to Shawn, me? He did the right thing. Shawn disrespected him as Champion by refusing to do the job for him plus Bret had creative control in his contract too so he was free to drop the title the way he wanted to. I understand Vince’s paranoia about Bret showing up on WCW programming with the title but he should have allowed Bret to do what he wanted to do. He was the one who allowed Bret to leave too, Bret didn’t want to leave he wanted to stay out of loyalty but with the financial problems Vince was facing I guess Bret left as a favour. It’s funny to think how Vince couldn’t afford to pay Bret $1million a year yet he could pay Mike Tyson $5million for 3 months work.

So how did the Screwjob come about? Triple H was the one who suggested screwing Bret out of the title whiles Gerald Brisco suggested the possible finishes. Funny enough, when talking about the match with Shawn & Vince, Bret suggested the spot where Shawn gets him in the Sharpshooter. It was like handing the loaded gun over to the killer. Pat Patterson wasn’t told. Pat was a road agent and was very close to Bret. He too thought that it would be a double DQ finish, if Pat found out what was about to happen he would have told Bret. Earl Hebner only found out on the day. Shawn filled him in about when it was going to happen, a few days before; a tearful Earl Hebner told Bret that he’d refuse to screw him over.

After the match, we found out that Bret destroyed a few TV monitors and motioned the letters “WCW” with his hands and went backstage. Vince McMahon confronted him in the locker room and Bret decked him. He had a black eye for weeks! The locker room wasn’t happy about it, a few boycotted Raw the next night. A few guys actually quit the company in protest. Shawn was told by Vince to act as if he wasn’t a part of it but the truth was revealed in 2002 when Shawn talked about his involvement in the Screwjob.

This match created the whole “Mr McMahon” character, the most profitable heel the WWE has ever had. The next 4 years saw the WWF do incredible business in terms of pay per view and merchandise revenue. You can blame Bret for being stubborn and refusing to lose in Canada and losing to Shawn but if Vince asked Bret to drop the title to Undertaker, Stone Cold or even Mankind, I’m pretty certain that Bret would agree to that but Vince didn’t want that as Shawn v Bret was the money match. They wanted to save Austin’s title victory for Wrestlemania, Undertaker was having his feud with Kane and Mankind (who would revert to his Cactus Jack gimmick) would be teaming up with Terry Funk to help bolster up the tag team ranks. Bret proposed forfeiting the title the next night on Raw but he refused to put Shawn over because of Shawn’s insistence that he would never put Bret over.

I think Vince drove Bret away in a move that was not needed. He should have found ways to make them work together like professionals for the betterment of the company. In a perfect world, Bret and Shawn should have been friends (like they were before their feud in ’96), Bret would have continued to wrestle for the WWF for another 3-4 years and retired. He would never have spent a second in WCW (who completely wasted him if you ask me) and he would have prevented his brother, Owen, from doing stupid stunt that cost him his life in 1999. Thankfully, everyone has made peace. Bret and Vince were able to mend the fence and this lead to a Hall of Fame induction and that amazing DVD which highlighted his legendary career. It took time for Bret and Shawn to make peace but they finally did in 2010 on an emotional edition of Raw. This also led to a DVD where Bret and Shawn sat side by side and talked openly about the Screwjob. It’s was surreal watching it but also emotional moment finally seeing these guys being friends again knowing what they’ve both went through. One of my life mottos is “Living in the past, there’s no future in it” and certainly true for these guys.

 

Best Match: Shawn Michaels vs. Bret Hart – This match is always overlooked because of the finish but the match was good and was on its way to being a special match.

Worst Match: The Truth Commission vs. Disciples of Apocalypse – Horrible match. The most acrobatic move in the entire match was a bulldog.

Attitude Era Moment: The Screwjob – The most talked about moments in wrestling history and it helped create the Mr McMahon character.

 

Top 5 Superstars

1. Bret Hart – He gets the top spot because he was nothing but loyal for the WWF and helped carry the company during the dark times. It was an awful and humiliating way to go.

2. Stone Cold – His return was fun.

3. Shawn Michaels – His involvement in the Screwjob was wrong but he was a great heel in the match.

4. Ken Shamrock – His character was catching on at this point. He was booked great here.

5. The Rock – Showed glimmers of what was to come in the future. Felt a lot more comfortable as a heel.

 

Superstar Rankings

Shawn Michaels – 19pts

Bret Hart – 18pts

Undertaker – 14pts

Stone Cold – 12pts

Owen Hart – 3pts

Mick Foley/ Vader/Ken Shamrock – 2pts

British Bulldog/ Kane/The Rock – 1pt

 

Overall Show Rating (Out of 10): 4

This is a show which is only remembered for one thing and it’s what happened after the main event. The undercard was poor and forgettable but there were key performances from “the future of the WWF” such as Stone Cold, The Rock, Kane and Mankind. Four names who would help carry the Attitude Era.

 

Pay Per View Rankings

One Night Only – 7.5

Summerslam ’97 – 6

Ground Zero – 4

Survivor Series ’97 – 4

Bad Blood – 3

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4 comments on “Attitude Era Classics: WWF Survivor Series 1997

  1. therealmidcard
    September 5, 2013

    People give Bret far too much credit. He was a talent, not an executive. He shouldn’t choose who he puts over, and where. Yes, the same goes for Shawn, but it doesn’t make the sentiment apply any less to Bret. He chose to go to WCW for more money. Nobody made him do that. If he was so loyal, he’d have balanced his books and stayed as the top guy for Vince. He didn’t need to have more money. I’m pretty sure he was still earning in a year more than I will in a lifetime, hardly hobo wages. He made a choice, TOLD management what he was and wasn’t going to do, and was shown the hard way what happens when you do that. The screwjob couldn’t be more justified in my opinion, and made for fascinating viewing.

  2. therealmidcard
    September 5, 2013

    In relation to the elimination matches.. Boy did they have a terrible mid-card roster at that point. No wonder WCW was bossing it. Even the names and gimmicks made you want to cry, let alone the “wrestling” – Chains, Sniper, Recon, The Interrogator? LMAO. At least they put it on early.

    • Rif Rasslin Inc
      September 7, 2013

      There were some terrible guys on the roster at the time, but the seeds were planted for the ‘attitude’ era and thankfully, things would improve in 1998.
      *Rif Van Der Sheriff
      RifRasslin@hotmail.co.uk
      @RifRasslin

  3. Pingback: Attitude Era Classics: WWF Survivor Series 1997 | RIF RASSLIN' | Alpha Channel

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