In the face of World Championship Wrestling’s unprecedented challenge to the World Wrestling Federation’s stranglehold on the industry, aided by the revolutionary New World Order angle, the WWF decided to stay the course and not panic when they presented In Your House 9: International Incident — 20 years ago today!
While WCW was busy getting the nWo off the ground, the WWF was in a holding pattern, it seemed, dogged by recurring boo-boos (Ultimate Warrior) and a World Champion (Shawn Michaels) that wasn’t exactly the most popular star in the company.
But, with the sudden emergence of Stone Cold Steve Austin and the ultra-hot program between Mankind and The Undertaker, the future was bright for the WWF. With SummerSlam ’96 on the horizon, IYH 9 was an event with an eye on the future, to SummerSlam and beyond.
This week Throwback Thursday on WrestlingDVDNetwork.com takes a look back at In Your House 9, as it appears on the WWE Network, where context isn’t an issue – all previous PPVs and Monday Night RAWs are currently available to watch on the Network.
WWF In Your House 9: International Incident (WATCH)
Date: July 21, 1996 – Location: General Motors Place, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Attendance : 14,804 – PPV Buyrate: 0.37 (>122,000)
Commentators: Vince McMahon, Jerry Lawler, & Jim Ross
Interviews: Vince McMahon, Mr. Perfect, & Dok Hendrix
CHAMPIONS AT THE TIME:
WWF World Heavyweight Champion: Shawn Michaels
WWF Intercontinental Champion: Ahmed Johnson
WWF Tag Team Champions: The Smoking Gunns (Billy & Bart Gunn)
As the show begins we see footage from the Free For All show that aired prior to the PPV (currently unavailable on the Network, but can be found here) of Jose Lothario knocking Jim Cornette on his backside at the conclusion of their face-to-face debate. Vader makes the save and is ready to take out Jose when HBK storms the ring before officials separate the two.
The show opens with Vince McMahon welcoming us to the show as The Smoking Gunns make their way to the ring for the opening contest. With The Gunns in the ring Vince McMahon interviews Skip and Zip from ringside about why Cloudy/Kloudi (Jimmy Shoulders) is no longer their manager and how they don’t need a manager anymore because the fans are behind them.
— “Non-Title Match” (WATCH – 0:53)
The Body Donnas (Zip & Skip) vs. The Smoking Gunns (Billy & Bart Gunn) (WWF World Tag Team Champions) w/Sunny
The story in this one is Sunny, who left Skip and Zip for The Godwinns after the Body Donnas lost the tag straps and then The Godwinns for The Smoking Gunns when the titles changed hands on the Free For All prior to IYH 8: Beware of Dog (currently unavailable on the Network). Aligned with with the Gunns, Sunny began to slowly drive a wedge between the “brothers” that would ultimately spell the end of the team. This is a solid opener with plenty of wrestling action; all four men look strong. Using every heel tactic they can, The Gunns seem to have the match in hand. Bart sets up Zip for the Sidewinder but Sunny draws Billy away from the match, enabling Skip to connect with a beautiful missile dropkick and allowing Zip to pick up the pin at 13:05.
WINNERS are The Body Donnas (Zip & Skip) (Pin, 13:05)
Backstage Mr. Perfect interviews James E. Cornette and the rest of “Camp Cornette” about the incident at the conclusion of the Free For All and the upcoming 6-man tag team main event, which Cornette guarantees they’ll win or else he’ll refund the fans money!
— Singles Match (WATCH – 19:52)
Mankind vs. Henry O. Godwinn (sub. for Jake “The Snake” Roberts) w/Hillbilly Jim
The audio for Henry Godwinn’s entrance, music, crowd and commentary, are muted, for those keeping score. Mankind was originally supposed to face Jake “The Snake” but Jake was “injured” as part of the ongoing storyline with Jerry Lawler. It was all for the best, as Godwinn and Mankind put on a hard-hitting and at times wild match, including Godwinn slamming Mankind on the concrete from the ring apron. Mankind blocks the Slop Drop and sinks in the Mandible Claw for the win at 6:54.
WINNER is Mankind (Submission, 6:54)
Backstage we see Brian Pillman and Raymond Rougeau hosting the Superstar Line where The Body Donnas and The Smoking Gunns continue to argue.
— “Grudge Match” (WATCH – 31:09)
Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. “Wildman” Marc Mero w/Sable
The story in this one goes back to the semi-final round of the 1996 “King of the Ring Tournament” where Mero split Austin’s mouth wide open. This is, for my money, the match of the night. These two tell a great story and put on a helluva match. In the end, Austin takes Mero’s knee out and connects with a devastating Stunner for the 1-2-3 at 10:49.
WINNER is Stone Cold Steve Austin (Pin, 10:49)
Next we see Bob Backlund “campaigning” in the crowd as part of Backlund’s ridiculous “campaign” for the White House, even though he’s in Canada. A promo for the next night’s RAW, featuring The Smoking Gunns versus HBK and Ahmed Johnson, airs.
— Singles Match (WATCH – 46:20)
Goldust w/Marlena vs. The Undertaker w/Paul Bearer
These two battled for the Intercontinental title at In Your House 8: Beware of Dog 2 in a “Casket Match”, a match that turned out to be far better than this one. It takes forever for this match to get going, and when it does get going very little actually happens, which, in hindsight, is the point. Undertaker hits the Tombstone Piledriver and is primed to win the match when Mankind comes through the ring, attacks Undertaker to end that match at 12:08, sinks in the Mandible Claw, and drags the Undertaker through the ring. Lights flicker, the ring fills with smoke. Suddenly Undertaker comes through the other side of the ring and begins to brawl with Mankind all the way to the back. The dull match set the exciting finish up perfectly.
WINNER is The Undertaker w/Paul Bearer (Disqualification, 12:08)
After the match we get a SummerSlam ’96 promo before cutting to Undertaker and Mankind brawling in a “boiler room”. After the brawl, a vignette focusing on the main event airs and Dok Hendrix interviews “The People’s Posse” before the main event.
— “6-Man Tag Team Match” (WATCH – 1:14:42)
“Camp Cornette” (Vader, The British Bulldog, & Owen Hart) w/James E. Cornette vs. “The People’s Posse” (Sycho Sid, WWF Intercontinental Champion Ahmed Johnson (sub. for The Ultimate Warrior), & WWF World Heavyweight Champion Shawn Michaels) w/Jose Lothario
Warrior was supposed to be a part of The People’s Posse but was fired from the WWF after missing a series of house shows to attend his father’s funeral, though Warrior had issues with WWF selling merchandise without giving Warrior a percentage, so both sides had heat. This match is all about setting up Vader and Shawn Michaels’ World title match at SummerSlam ’96. An entertaining match, even if it is a bit long, this one is full of great spots, great wrestling, and fun action. HBK looks to have the match won after attacking Vader with Corny’s racket and sets up for Sweet Chin Music when Cornette grabs HBK’s left foot. Vader connects with a big splash in the corner before delivering a Vader Bomb for the upset win at 24:32.
WINNERS are Camp Cornette (Vader, The British Bulldog, Owen Hart) w/James E. Cornette (Pin, 24:32)
After the match Sid powerbombs Bulldog and Owen and attempts to powerbomb Vader when Vader is rescued. As the heels turn to leave Shawn leaps over the top rope and wipes Vader out. The babyface celebrate in the ring as HBK’s music blares.
The show continues with International Incident: Extra where WWF President Gorilla Monsoon announces that Undertaker and Mankind will face-off in a “Boiler Room Brawl” at SummerSlam ’96. Cornette barges in and demands Vader get a World title shot against HBK at SummerSlam. A music montage of the night’s matches plays and the show is over.
With only one underwhelming match (Undertaker/Goldust) IYH 9 was an above average card that set the stage well for SummerSlam ’96. In spite of WCW starting to make a real push for number one, the WWF kept their heads down and stayed focused on their product. If you haven’t seen In Your House 9, it’s worth watching. Besides the 6-man main event, the Marc Mero/Stone Cold Steve Austin match is must-see, though it may not be as good as their WCW work, for obvious reasons.
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Until next week, see ya at ringside!
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