'WWE Vintage’ TV Report #280 – October 13th, 2013
Shown on Sky Sports in the U.K.
By Stephen Lyon.
This week's theme: Stone Cold Steve Austin career retrospective show. Matches included: Bobby Eaton vs Stunning Steve Austin for the WCW TV title (WCW Worldwide, June 1991); Ricky Steamboat & Shane Douglas vs the Hollywood Blondes for the WCW World Tag Team titles (WCW Worldwide, March 1993); Mikey Whipwreck vs Superstar Steve Austin for the ECW title (ECW November to Remember ppv, November 1995); The Ringmaster vs Matt Hardy (Austin's WWF in-ring debut, WWF Raw, January 1996); and Shawn Michaels vs Stone Cold Steve Austin for the WWF title (WWF Wrestlemania 14 ppv, March 1998).
The biggest news is that this show has had its' biggest makeover since May 2010. Amongst the changes made on today's show were:
- Name of the show has changed slightly, with 'Collection' being dropped, and the show now being known simply as 'WWE Vintage'.
- Brand new logo, great new opening credits featuring many of the all-time wrestling greats and cool new theme music as well, very reminiscent of Coldplay's 'Clocks' song.
- New feature during the show called 'Vintage Versus', which was a video package highlighting a dream match between a star of today and yesteryear. Today's feature was Steve Austin vs CM Punk.
- Factoid boxes occasionally displayed on screen during various matches. Thankfully this was kept to a bare minimum.
With all the changes made, plus the content, this was a fantastic show this week. This was easily one of the best Vintage shows ever. WWE production is nearly always great, but this was on another level. This is the best tv show that WWE produces each week.
Show was hosted by Gene Okerlund & Renee Young.
1) Stunning Steve Austin (w/Lady Blossom in his corner) defeated Bobby Eaton to win the WCW TV title. This match aired on the June 29th, 1991 edition of 'WCW Worldwide', taped in Birmingham, Alabama on June 3rd, 1991. Announcers for this match were Tony Schiavone & Gordon Solie. Only the last few minutes aired here. Austin long blonde hair in a ponytail here. Austin worked over Eaton's shoulder. Eaton made a comeback, catching Austin with a swinging neckbreaker. As he went for the pin, Lady Blossom climbed into the ring as a distraction. Referee Nick Patrick was inadvertently bumped, with Blossom then scratching Eaton in the eyes, unseen by the ref. Austin then rolled up Eaton for the cheap victory, to win the WCW TV title.
2) The Hollywood Blondes (Steve Austin & Brian Pillman) defeated Ricky Steamboat & Shane Douglas to win the WCW World Tag Team titles. This match aired on the March 27th, 1993 edition of 'WCW Worldwide', taped in Macon, Georgia on March 2nd, 1993. Announcers for this match were Tony Schiavone & Jesse Ventura. Last few minutes of this match aired here. The Blondes worked over Douglas, leading to Steamboat making the hot tag. Steamboat cleaned house, and even tossed Austin over the top rope - which should have been a DQ, but was unseen by the referee. Steamboat suplexed Pillman, then connected with a crossbody off the top. Austin broke up the pinfall attempt. Finish saw Austin nail Steamboat with a belt shot in the back, leading to Austin placing Pillman on top of Steamboat to score the pinfall victory and win the tag team titles.
Clips aired from the documentary that featured on the 'Stone Cold Steve Austin - The Bottom Line on the Most Popular Superstar of All Time' 2011 DVD release, with Austin talking about being fired from WCW and enjoying a spell in ECW. Comments from Mick Foley and Eric Bischoff (circa 2003) aired, adding to the story.
3) ECW World Champion, Mikey Whipwreck defeated Superstar Steve Austin to retain the title. This match took place at the 'ECW November to Remember 1995' pay-per-view event, held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on November 18th, 1995. Sole announcer for this match was Joey Styles. Austin spoofed Hulk Hogan, delivering a big boot and legdrop for a nearfall. Austin dominated Whipwreck, giving him a Stun Gun on the top rope for a nearfall. Surprisingly, Whipwreck grabbed an enormous handful of Austin tights, to the point Austin's tights were almost pulled down, and rolled him up for the fluke pinfall win. Austin destroyed Whipwreck afterwards.
4) The Ringmaster (w/Ted DiBiase in his corner) defeated Matt Hardy. This match aired on the January 15th, 1996 edition of 'WWF Raw', taped in Newark, Delaware on December 18th, 1995. Announcers for this match were Vince McMahon & Jerry Lawler. This was Austin's first WWF in-ring match on tv. Austin had a buzzcut and was wearing green trunks and white boots. Matt Hardy was a 21 year old short-haired jobber here. Austin won quickly after a stun gun on the ropes and applying the Million Dollar Dream on Hardy.
The famous 'Austin 3:16' speech from Austin, that occurred at the June 23, 1996 WWF King of the Ring ppv, was shown. Back in the studio, Gene Okerlund called this 'the single most important interview in wrestling history'.
Next came the 'Vintage Versus' segment, featuring CM Punk and Austin. This segment was AWESOME. They showed a minute or two of Punk career highlights, including the backstage segment from Raw when Punk and Austin crossed paths in June 2011, and a minute or two of Stone Cold career highlights. They then aired an edited version of the terrific CM Punk/Jim Ross/Steve Austin sit-down interview, taped in August 2012 to promote the WWE '13 video game. Previously it had been made available on the internet, but I believe this may have been the first time this footage has aired on tv. After this segment, Punk vs Austin seemed like a huge dream match. Maybe some day....
The famous Vince McMahon/Mike Tyson/Steve Austin segment from the January 19th, 1998 edition of RAW aired in full.
5) Stone Cold Steve Austin defeated Shawn Michaels to win the WWF title. This match was the main event of the 'WWF Wrestlemania 14' pay-per-view event, held in Boston, Massachusetts on March 29th, 1998. Announcers for this match were Jim Ross & Jerry Lawler. The last few minutes of this bout aired. Michaels dropped a top rope elbow on Austin, but was cocky with his pinfall attempts. He soon paid the price when Austin pinned him for the win after a stunner. Mike Tyson delivered a fast count, and raised Austin's arms. Austin handed the DX-t-shirt-clad Tyson an Austin 3:16 t-shirt. Michaels confronted Tyson about changing sides, but Tyson decked him with one punch. The Austin era had begun.
Closing thoughts: Excellent show this week. Love all the changes made. Austin had an incredible career and this show - although only one hour in length - did it justice, cramming as much into the show as possible.
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1) Stunning Steve Austin (w/Lady Blossom in his corner) defeated Bobby Eaton to win the WCW TV title ('WCW Worldwide' - Birmingham, Alabama: taped on 03/06/91, aired on 29/06/91).
2) The Hollywood Blondes defeated Ricky Steamboat & Shane Douglas to win the WCW World Tag Team titles ('WCW Worldwide' - Macon, Georgia: taped on 02/03/93, aired on 27/03/93).
3) ECW World Champion, Mikey Whipwreck defeated Superstar Steve Austin to retain the title ('ECW November to Remember 1995' pay-per-view event - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: 18/11/95).
4) The Ringmaster (w/Ted DiBiase in his corner) defeated Matt Hardy ('WWF Raw' - Newark, Delaware: taped on 18/12/95, aired on 15/01/96).
5) Stone Cold Steve Austin defeated Shawn Michaels to win the WWF title ('WWF Wrestlemania 14' pay-per-view event - Boston, Massachusetts: 29/03/98).
Please note: I DO NOT sell DVDs or tapes of any of these shows. Sorry!
I hope you enjoyed this week’s report. For other reports like this one, be sure to check it out my website archive at http://www.classicwrestlingreports.com .
It’s no longer updated, but this website carries all of my previous WWE Classics tv reports that have been featured on the old WrestlingObserver.com website.
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Until next week, have a good week.
St Helens, England, U.K.