We’re back with more Into the Vault and it’s a march to finish out 1996. Let’s get into WWE Survivor Series 1996 from November 17, 1996.
The third Series bout of the night? Oof. With the Fake Diesel and Razor? Le double oof. This is WWE experiencing a lack of consistency.
Then it’s short—which I’m not complaining about—and placed towards the end of the show. This should’ve probably swapped with another Series bout since Bret vs. Austin was so lengthy.
Actually, given that it was short, it’s in the right place. Three matches over 20 minutes back-to-back in 1996 WWE just wasn’t going to work for fans.
Also, it ended in a DQ which is just…weird for a Series match.
I really don’t know why the second Survivor Series match featuring Jake the Snake, Marc Mero, Rocky Maivia, and The Stalker against Goldust, Jerry Lawler, Hunter Hearst Helmsley, and Crush was so long.
The one would’ve benefited from being shorter. It wasn’t bad at all but the first elimination bout was going to make it hard for the other two to match.
In the first Survivor Series bout of the night, we saw the Godwinns and the Can-Am Express team up to face the British Bulldog, Owen Hart, and the New Rockers.
Both teams had some talent on them with the team managed by Clarance having the stronger concentration. What saved this was the Godwinns and the New Rockers getting eliminated.
When it was down to Davey Boy and Owen against Furnas and LaFon, things really picked up. Honestly, WWE Survivor Series 1996 could’ve just featured this match and two Survivor Series bouts.
I feel that it gets tired when an Undertaker-Mankind match pops up and I gush over it. I love brawls, these two excel at them, and they’re good at worst.
This one was no different except for Paul Bearer being in a shark cage—which I never understood as a stipulation. I guess handcuffing a manager to the ring isn’t enough.
Of all the matches on the card, Taker vs. Mankind had the best time given. It meant they had to come with it in 15 minutes. Not the best match of their rivalry but one of the better ones on the show.
This showdown is a very high Mid-Tier. It just fell short of that 7.5/10 to float it over.
The Bret vs. Austin match on this card is similar to Taker vs. Mankind: really good but not their best encounter. This is the technical bout in their series and from that aspect, it’s damn good.
As an entertaining, exciting WWE bout? Ehhhh. The crowd wasn’t into it until the end but I dig it. That said, I’m certain 11-year old me would’ve yawned at this.
Rounding out WWE Survivor Series 1996, Sycho Sid ending HBK’s WWE Championship reign. The crowd was tired with all this Superstar Shawn stuff Vince was doing as well as the Jose Lothario stuff.
HBK ran with it and the result was Sid getting over big time. This wasn’t a mind blowing match or anything but it was pretty good. It floats into extremely good territory thanks to the lively crowd.
WWE Survivor Series 1996 Verdict: Mid-Tier (6.6/10)
An above-average effort from WWE for this show. Survivor Series 1996 was going to be a hard review because the PPVs at the time just had to have multiple, lengthy Series matches of varying quality.
When I see WWE Survivor Series pre-Attitude Era, I know it’s going to match quality chicanery. Or just general chicanery, something’s happening.
In this show’s case, it was an issue of card arrangement. It’s just like listening to an album where some tracks being moved into another position would boost things for your listening enjoyment.
WWE Survivor Series 1996 is the same here.
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