It’s Vader Time. That was the tagline for this pay per view which highlighted the importance behind Vaders match with Yokozuna. The pair of them have a lot of history which dates back to Vaders debut in the 1996 Royal Rumble. It wasn’t long after that show that Yokozuna was kicked out of Camp Cornette and instantly became enemy number one. Vader injured Yokozunas leg putting him out of action and tonight Yokozuna returns to battle Vader in the battle of the big men.
In tonight main event Shawn Michaels battles the British Bulldog. At the last PPV we saw Bulldog kicking off about something Michaels had done and this was later cleared up. Diana Smith, wife of The British Bulldog claims that Shawn Michaels tried it on with her, something Michaels has categorically denied. Tonight these two veterans battle for the WWF Championship.
We’ll also get an Intercontinental title match tonight when Goldust defends his title against The Undertaker. Both men are masters of mind games and despite Undertakers problems with Mankind as of late, the dead man gets his first shot at the Intercontinental title on PPV. They’ll meet in a Casket Match. Another match we’ll see tonight is between Hunter Hearst Helmsley and Marc Mero. Back at Wrestlemania XII Helmsley blamed his valet Sable for his loss to The Ultimate Warrior. Mero who had just arrived on the scene came to the rescue of Sable and she has stood by Mero’s side ever since. Helmsley has attacked Mero numerous times hitting his deadly Pedigree and tonight we get a match between the two.
The other match we’ll see tonight is a rematch from Wrestlemania XII between Steve Austin and Savio Vega. These two have had a heated rivalry for many months and tonight they meet in the first ever Caribbean Strap Match. An interesting addition to this match is if Savio Vega loses he becomes the Million Dollar Corporations bitch and but if Savio wins then Dibiase will have to leave the WWF.
Now it’s worth noting that this show did not go as planned. There were big storms in South Carolina which basically turned out the power in the arena. So as a result we get the opening match between Helmsley and Mero and the main event between Michaels and Bulldog. The rest of the PPV was re-scheduled 2 days later so we’ll get the other three matches at the end. So let’s get to it.
We get a video package to start the show giving us the background on Shawn Michaels and British Bulldog. Bulldogs wife Diana claims Shawn Michaels tried it on with her, Michaels denies the accusations.
Vince McMahon welcomes us to In Your House: Beware Of Dog. McMahon is joined by Jerry Lawler who makes some Mission Impossible references, that film must be out around this time.
Hunter Hearst Helmsley vs. Marc Mero
This feud goes back to Marc Mero taking sable from Helmsleys side. Sable is of course Mero’s real life wife but that’s not known here. Mero is the Wildman and he’s joined by Sable whilst Helmsley is joined by an escort. This is actually Marc Mero’s WWE Pay Per View debut. Helmsley has a decent enough record on PPV, his only singles loss came at Wrestlemania XII to The Ultimate Warrior. Mero and Helmsley go straight at it before the bell. This feud goes back to Wrestlemania where Mero and Hunter got into it backstage. Mero comes flying over the ropes at Hunter before throwing him back into the ring and hitting a slingshot legdrop. Helmsley gets back into it with a thumb to the eye. But Mero soon gets the advantage with a reverse Irish whip, a big right hand and a near fall. Mero misses with a shoulder barge in the corner and instead drives his shoulder into the ring post. Helmsley then grabs Mero and throws him into the opposite ring post. Somebody at ringside is screaming annoyingly. Helmsley is actually unbeaten on In Your House PPVs so it’ll be interesting to see how that continues. He’s in control now with an armbar as McMahon warns us about the storms.
Mero tries to get back into the match but his shoulder gives way. Helmsley goes back to the shoulder, throwing Meros arm into the ringpost. The pace of this match is quite slow at the moment with Hunter methodically taking apart Marc Mero’s arm and shoulder. He keeps going to the arm bar in different variations of the hold. Helmsley hits a knee drop on the back of Meros arm which looks pretty painful. The crowd get behind Mero now clapping as he struggles in yet another arm bar. Mero briefly gets back into the match with a roll up but Hunter is first up and he clotheslines Mero down with a big clothesline. Helmsley has defeated the likes of Bob Holly, Henry Godwinn, Fatu and Duke “The Dumpster” on PPV before but I would say Mero is a bigger challenge than all of those. He’s not proving to be so far though as Hunter comes off the top with a double axe handle before going to another arm bar. Helmsley grabs onto the top rope to get more leverage. Hunter hits a bodyslam then goes to the top but Mero gets up and bounces off the ropes to crotch his opponent! Mero goes up to the top with Hunter and hits a hurricanrana!
Mero then hits a flying head scissores, notice how he uses his legs to attack with. The Wildman has the momentum now as he goes to the top and hits a sunset flip which gets him a very close two count. He follows it up with a dropkick sending Hunter over the top rope then goes for a flying plancha of sorts but Hunter gets out of the way. Mero doesn’t land well at all, he looks like he may have hurt his knee there. Hunter rolls Mero back into the ring and then shouts at Sable to watch. He then sets Mero up for the Pedigree but Sable looks away. Hunter drops Mero and goes out to Sable, grabbing her wrist and telling her to watch. He then gets back into the ring and sets up for the Pedigree as well but Mero gets out of it and slingshots Hunter into the ring post. Mero then pins Helmsley for the three! Marc Mero wins on his PPV debut and Hunter finally loses at an In Your House. This match was ok, slowed down by the arm locks.
Backstage to Mr Perfect who is with Camp Cornette. Cornette has a surprise for Shawn Michaels tonight but he’ll reveal that later. But what he will give away is that Owen Hart is going to be British Bulldogs manager tonight. Clarence Mason has his arm in a sling.
Shawn Michaels (c) vs. The British Bulldog – WWF Title Match
Well bizarrely this match won’t be finishing the night, instead it’s up second. I wonder if this is because they’re worried about the storms? Who knows but for whatever reason it is up now. The odds are against Bulldog in this one as not only is Shawn Michaels undefeated at In Your House but also the WWF title has never changed hands on this PPV. This is Michaels second PPV defence of his title after he defeated Diesel at the last In Your House. Clarence Mason gets on the microphone before the bell and says that because of Michaels involvement in Bulldog and Diana Smiths relationship Clarence Mason will be taking Shawn Michaels to court. Shawn is handed some papers and the WWF champion rips them up. Bulldog then attacks Michaels before the bell but it isn’t long before the champion takes the advantage. These two men have never met in a singles match on PPV before. Back in 92 it was Michaels that defeated Bulldog for the Intercontinental title. Bulldog has had title matches on PPV against the likes of Bret Hart and Diesel in recent months.
Back in the ring and Michaels hits a headlock takedown. Bulldog eventually gets out of it and we have some quick wrestling from both men that results in an enzeguri from Michaels and an near fall. Michaels then goes to the armbar once more. Bulldog manages to lift Michaels up onto his shoulder whilst still in an armbar then fall back and drop the champion on his back. Bulldog has the advantage now and hits a big back body drop. Bulldog has had quite the run since turning heel. I’m not sure why Jim Cornette isn’t out here, he must be banned from ringside. Every match that Michaels has had Jose Lothario in his corner he’s won. This could be three from three. Up to now every In Your House PPV had been main evented by either Bret Hart or Diesel. Bulldog goes to a chinlock now and then to a backbreaker, applying the pressure on Michaels back. The challenger then hits a Samoan drop and follows it up with a leg drop for a two count.
Bulldog and Michaels are both in the top 3 for most PPV appearances and top 4 for most PPV matches. These are two of the most grizzled veterans in the company. Both men are tied with 16 PPV wins each, joint 5th of all wrestlers at this point in time. Funnily enough Michaels is joint second for both most PPV draws and most losses of all time too. Michaels goes flying to the outside now as Bulldog continues to take control. He throws Michaels into the railings then into the apron. This is Michaels 8th PPV main event putting him 6th on the all time list and Bulldogs 5th putting him 9th. Michaels gets back into the ring with a slingshot clothesline. both men get up to their feet and Michaels hits a flying forearm before nipping back up to his feet. The crowd love that as Shawn then hits a powerslam and a double axe handle which earns him a two count. Back up and Michaels ducks as Bulldog runs at him and Bulldog goes flying into the referee who goes flying out of the ring. Shawn then goes up top and hits a flying elbow drop. He then sets up for Sweet Chin Music but in comes Owen Hart and instead it’s Hart that receives the finisher.
Bulldog attacks Michaels from behind and goes for the running powerslam but Michaels slips down and shoves Bulldog into the corner before hitting a bridging German suplex. A new referee slides in and counts to three! It’s Bulldogs music that hits though and the referee raises his arm! British Bulldog is announced as the new WWF Champion! But then the original referee gets back in and raises Shawn Michaels hand! Michaels music hits and there’s some confusion. Diana Smith takes off with the title belt though until Gorilla Monsoon takes it off her and gets into the ring. A “HBK” chant breaks out as we go to a replay which shows that both mens shoulders were on the mat for a three. An announcement is then made that Gorilla Monsoon has declared this match as a draw! So Shawn Michaels is still WWF champion but there will be a rematch! A disappointing result but it means we haven’t seen the end from these two.
Now this is interesting. The two matches I have reviewed so far are the only two matches from the original PPV on the WWE Network. There were problems on the evening with lighting and so some of the matches were in complete darkness. So now we’re taken to In Your House: Beware Of Dog 2 which was shot 2 days later. Jim Ross and Mr Perfect are at ringside for this one.
“Stone Cold” Steve Austin vs. Savio Vega – Caribbean Strap Match
Well here we go, the rematch in the light this time. This match is a leather strap match where if Steve Austin wins, Savio must become Steve’s driver. But if Savio Vega wins then “The Million Dollar Man” Ted Dibiase will never be seen in the WWF again. In the dark it was Savio Vega that won this match, can he do it for a second time? To win the match you have to touch all four corner whilst strapped to your opponent. Austin takes the advantage in the early going but Vega comes back into it with a back body drop. Savio has now been in the WWF a year, this PPV marks a year since his PPV debut. This time last year he helped out Razor Ramon who was getting beaten down by Jeff Jarrett and The Roadie. Savio whips Austin then touches two of the turnbuckles before Steve Austin takes him down. Austin whips Vega with the strap now until the two men get into a brawl on the mat. After some brawling on the outside, Austin ties up Savios leg and tries to drag him around the ring whilst he touches the turnbuckles. Steve makes it to 2 before Savio swings him around and throws him into a corner.
With Razor Ramon gone this has given Savio Vega the opportunity to fly solo. Savio clubs away at Austins back now but Austin backbody drops him over the ropes and as a result Austin goes over with him. Savio whips Austin on the outside now in what has been a vicious match so far. Back in the ring and Savio wraps Steve up in the strap before touching two turnbuckles. Austin grabs onto the bottom rope but Savio still manages to hit a third before Austin drags him to the mat. Austin is up to his feet first this time and he whips Savio. Savio takes the advantage though popping Austin on the to rope then hitting a superplex! Savio is up first and he walks around and hits three turnbuckles but Austin doesn’t let him touch the fourth. This is a rematch from Wrestlemania XII where Austin beat Vega after hitting him with the Million Dollar Championship. It’s Austins turn now to make his way around the turnbuckles, he hits two before Vega comes at him. Austin goes for a Tombstone but Savio reverses it but then Austin reverses it but Savio falls out of the ring. Austin goes up to the top now but Savio pulls him to the outside and into the guard rail!
Both men roll into the ring and Savio gets Austin up on his shoulders before touching one turnbuckle, two turnbuckles then Austin rolls down but Savio hits the third turnbuckle. Savio then slowly walks to the fourth but Austin drags him back! Austin hits a piledriver much to the liking of Ted Dibiase. Dibiase calls for another piledriver but as Stone Cold goes for it, Savio back body drops him. Austin then locks on the Million Dollar Dream! Savio walks over to the corner and touches one, then two but he fades. Savio losses consciousness but then dives onto a third turnbuckle before falling back in Austin to get out of the hold. Both men get up and Austin drops Vega on the corner. Austin then wraps the strap around Savios neck and drags him around the ring. Steve touches two turnbuckles and Savio touches them too. Steve makes it three and so does Savio. Savio then pulls Austin back, not allowing him to make it three. Austin pulls the strap but he pulls it too hard and Savio flies over Austin and touches the fourth corner! Savio Vega wins!
Austin walks off down the entrance ramp leaving Ted Dibiase in the ring with Savio Vega. Vega grabs the microphone and tells them to cut his music. Some “goodbye” music then hits and Savio sings over the top of it with the whole crowd. It’s a sad way for such a legend to leave the company. Ted Dibiase really is a legend of the company. As for this one, Savio Vega defeats Steve Austin in what will probably the end of this feud.
We then get a shot of Shawn Michaels chatting to some fans on his laptop.
Vader vs. Yokozuna
This is the battle of the behemoths. Vader has won two of his three PPV matches, his only loss coming in the Royal Rumble. Yokozuna us actually joint 10th for most PPV wins up to this point, with 10. He’s joint with Earthquake in case you were wondering. Both men get straight into it, exchanging right hands. Yokozuna is 5th of all time for PPV main events with 9. He’s a former two time WWF champion and a former tag team champion. No sign of Mr Fuji for this one. The referee breaks it up and we start again with both men staring at each other across the ring. At the last In Your House Vader defeated Razor Ramon. It’s taking a while to get this one started as both men do sumo poses but Vader bottles it every time they look to charge at one another. Finally Yokozuna charges at Vader taking him off his feet then Yoko follows it up with a clothesline over the top rope. Vader gets back into the ring and hits some hard rights and lefts but Yoko grabs his leg and takes him off his feet again before elbowing him. Vader rolls out of the ring holding his leg. Vader then limps back into the ring hitting right hands but once again Yokozuna takes Vader down and drops an elbow.
Vader takes the advantage with a cheap show then continues with big right hands to the side of Yokozunas head. Vader then tires to slam Yokozuna but his back cant take it. Yoko then takes Vader down with a slam before squashing him in the corner and hitting a Samoan drop. The former 2 time WWF champion then motions for the Banzai drop and drags Vader over to the corner. Yoko goes up to the middle rope but Jim Cornette gets up on the apron. He goes to hit Yoko with the tennis racket but Yoko grabs it and throws Cornette into the ring. Yokozuna is clearly distracted by Jim Cornette now. He headbutts his former manager then drags him over to the corner and looks to go for a Banzai drop on him! Vader pulls his manager out of the way though and Yoko hits the mat hard. Vader now goes after Yokozunas leg before hitting the Vader Bomb for the three! Vader defeats Yokozuna and continues his decent PPV record. The right result I believe. Yokozuna seems to be in the twilight of his career whilst Vader is still such a new commodity. I can see Vader going on to fight for the World title before long.
Now to a promo with Jerry Lawler for King Of The Ring. Afterwards Jim Ross lets us know some of the matches at King Of The Ring which include the rematch between Shawn Michaels and British Bulldog for the title.
Goldust (c) vs. The Undertaker – Casket Match for the Intercontinental Championship
The final match we have tonight is a casket match between Undertaker and Goldust. The Intercontinental title is on the line as Undertaker just appears behind Goldust. Undertaker has never battled on PPV for the IC championship. He starts well throwing Goldust into the corner and hitting him with throat thrusts. There’s a gold casket outside made especially for Goldust. Undertaker throws Goldust onto the casket and the champion freaks out. Marlena and Paul Bearer are at ringside for this one. Undertaker hits Goldust with right hands on the outside. Both men get back into the ring now and Undertaker twists Goldust arm and goes to the top rope, balancing along it and jumping off with a big right hand. Undertaker then chokes Goldust in the corner before throwing him to the other corner but Goldust hits an elbow and slams his challenger. Goldusts opponents have just got bigger and bigger from Marty Jannetty to Bam Bam Bigelow to Razor Ramon to Ultimate Warrior to The Undertaker. Bigger in importance is what I mean.
Goldust hits a Tombstone but Undertaker sits right back up. It is Goldust with the advantage now though as he goes to roll Undertaker into the casket. Undertaker gets rolled in but Undertaker won’t let him shut the lid. Undertaker gets back into the ring and hits a big boot but he can’t follow it up as Goldust back body drops him out of the ring. The two men go at it outside now as Goldust slams Undertaker into the ring steps then chokes him with some cable. The two men then get back into the ring and it’s Undertaker with some boots and right hands. Goldust reverses an Irish whip though then locks on a sleeper. Undertaker is out of it as Goldust lets go then rolls Undertaker into the casket. He cant close the lid though as the dead man gets his arm out. Goldust gets on the casket to try and close it but Undertaker forces the door open. Both men get back into the ring and Undertaker hits a huge clothesline. He then hits another big clothesline and both men go flying over the ropes. The former WWF champion grabs a chair but Goldust boots him in the face and clotheslines him down.
Back in the ring and Goldust hits a powerslam before going to the top and hitting a clothesline. Goldust then pins Undertaker and counts himself a three but you can’t win this match by pinfall dummy. Goldust drags Undertaker but the dead man hits him with a right hand. Goldust then twists the arm and goes for Undertakers move off the top but Undertaker drags him off the top! Undertaker motions for the Tombstone and hits it right next to the casket! Undertaker opens the casket and Mankind is in there! Mankind jumps out and shoves his finger down Undertakers throat! That’s Mankinds finisher the Mandible Claw. He forces Undertaker into the casket and shuts the lid! Goldusts music hits! Goldust retains his Intercontinental title thanks to Mankind! After Mankind and Goldust have left Paul Bearer opens the casket and Undertaker has gone! This match was good fun. Quite short but they got a lot in and it was an entertaining match between two decent workers.
And that in all it’s bizarre glory was In Your house 8: Beware Of Dog. The actual match quality was really quite good throughout. Mero got a big win over Helmsley in the opener and both men came out of that one looking pretty good. Shawn Michaels and The British Bulldog drew their match and we found out later that we’d get a rematch between the two at the next PPV, King Of The Ring. That’s really good for Bulldog who can’t stay out of the main event at the moment. It also means that this whole “Shawn Michaels is a womaniser” storyline continues which has been quite strong so far. There aren’t a lot of other contenders for the title at the moment unless you look to Vader so it’s fine to continue on with Bulldog.
Then came “Beware Of Dog 2” which started with Savio Vega and Steve Austin. This match did take place on the original PPV but was in the dark for the most part. The result for this one was the same though and had a great ending. Really enjoyed this match, for me it was match of the night. Both men put on a hell of a show and Savio Vega winning means Ted Dibiase leaves (to go to wCw) and Steve Austin now goes forward with no manager. A big win for Savio, arguably his biggest win to date. Vader and Yokozuna then had their big battle. It wasn’t a technical masterpiece by any stretch of the imagination but an alright match between two huge guys. Vader wins which was the right move, it’ll be interesting to see where he heads now. He’s definitely one of, if not THE strongest heel on the roster. The final match was between Goldust and Undertaker and these two guys put on a decent match too. Undertaker doesn’t lose many (he’s got a 63% win record up to this point) but with Mankind getting involved it doesn’t affect him too much. Goldust looks to go on to feud with Ahmed Johnson whilst Undertaker deals with Mankind.
Overall this was a bit of a mess with the technical problems but the match quality was really good. This is unsurprising when you look at guys like Shawn Michaels, Steve Austin, Hunter Hearst Helmsley and The Undertaker on the card. Only Goldust, Shawn Michaels, Vader and Bulldog fought on the last pay per view which is an interesting statistic. I think a lot of these guys (Hunter, Austin, Savio, Yokozuna, Vader, Mero) will be big candidates to go on and win the King Of The Ring so it’ll be fun to see how that one pans out. I would probably not go back and watch this show but it did feature some good matches.
Overall Rating: 59/100 (Ranked joint 8th out of 56)
Match Of The Night: Steve Austin vs. Savio Vega
Worst Match Of The Night: Vader vs. Yokozuna
Surprise Of The Night: Technical Difficulties!
Worst Booking Of The Night: None
Wrestler Of The Night: Savio Vega
IYH8 Will Be Remembered For: Ted Dibiase leaving/technical problems