What the World Was Watching: The Action Zone – September 3, 1995

Todd Pettengill and Jim Ross quickly recap some of the events at SummerSlam.

Pettengill and Ross are doing commentary and they are taped from Portland, Maine.  Pettengill tells fans that The Action Zone will have a new format next week due to the WWF’s “new fall season.”

Footage of Barry Horowitz upsetting Skip at SummerSlam is shown.

Opening Contest:  Skip (w/Sunny) (7-4) beats Bob Holly (13-8-1) after rolling through the Pit Stop Plunge and using a Flair pin at 5:07:

Ross refers to Holly as the WWF’s version of Deion Sanders because he plays two sports.  Sadly, Holly’s win-loss record does not denote the same success as his football and baseball counterpart.  Skip works a lot of rest holds until Holly decides to go after Sunny for some weird reason.  That distraction allows Skip to recover enough to roll through the Pit Stop Plunge a few times until he gets close to the ropes, which he uses to score the winning pin and end his three-match losing streak.  Rating:  *

After the match, Skip and Holly keep fighting until Skip eats an atomic drop and runs into Sunny on the apron.  Sunny is knocked loopy as Pettengill laughs and Skip carries her back to the locker room.

Ross and Pettengill discuss the WWF title match at SummerSlam.  Ross says that Diesel was hurt in the ring and will not return until September 15, nine days before In Your House 3.  This is the second time that Diesel has been sidelined with an injury this year, with this injury happening when Mabel butt splashed Diesel on his lower back, which was already tender going into the bout.  Ross and Pettengill then discuss the stipulation of the In Your House 3 “triple header” match.  Cornette gives a pre-taped promo with Owen Hart and Yokozuna, where he claims that his men will win the WWF or Intercontinental title.

Call 1-900-737-4WWF to get a replay of all the post-match interviews at SummerSlam!

Rad Radford (8-3) pins Matt Hardy after a Northern Lights suplex at 3:11:

After taking some losses against main eventers, Radford is back in squash matches to reheat him.  Hardy gets a near-fall from a sunset flip into the ring but that is all the substantial offense he gets as Radford runs through some heatless maneuvers and pins the Hardy brother with a Northern Lights suplex.

Ross and Pettengill discuss Bertha Faye winning the WWF Women’s Championship at SummerSlam!  Pettengill teases Ross that he has a crush on Faye.

A replay of the British Bulldog and Jim Cornette’s interview with Vince McMahon on Superstars is shown.

Doink (8-4) defeats Joe Hancock after the Whoopie Cushion at 2:59:

Hancock gets tired of Doink trying to turn the pre-match referee check into a comedy spot and attacks him before the bell.  Doink counters by putting on a boring clinic of technical wrestling before finally hitting the Whoopie Cushion.  Fans in the crowd showed very little interest in the Doink character, who would make very few appearances after this.

Ross and Pettengill discuss the Shawn Michaels-Razor Ramon ladder match and the Kama-Undertaker casket match from SummerSlam.

Ross and Pettengill discuss the Bret Hart-Isaac Yankem SummerSlam match.

The Superstars match between Bret Hart and Waylon Mercy is shown.

Ross and Pettengill go over the In Your House 3 card.  They announce two new matches for the card:  Bret Hart will face Jean-Pierre LaFitte and Bam Bam Bigelow will face the British Bulldog.  They also hype a special show on FOX that will show some matches from WrestleMania XI.

The Last Word:  This was the last episode of The Action Zone to feature a set of original matches and angles.  The next week’s broadcast featured a studio setup with Pettengill and Dok Hendrix, who recapped the events on RAW and Superstars, with Ross providing a “Ross Report” that tried to give a sports-like breakdown to major storylines and matches.  The WWF made this change because the ratings for The Action Zone never broke 2.0 and did not justify the costs of providing a significant amount of new content.  Since new matches were largely canned from this show going forward, future reviews will focus on RAW and Superstars, with the house show and news breakdowns transferred to the Superstars reviews.  In addition, any original matches that aired on The Action Zone will be recapped in the Superstars reviews.

The company’s house shows went back into New York and the Canadian markets.  Here were the results of some of those shows (courtesy of thehistoryofwwe.com):

Niagara Falls, New York – August 30, 1995 (4,500):  Fatu beat Rad Radford…Skip beat Barry Horowitz…WWF Tag Team Champions Owen Hart & Yokozuna defeated the Smoking Gunns…Bam Bam Bigelow beat Tatanka in an Indian strap match…Razor Ramon fought Waylon Mercy to a double disqualification…Hakushi beat the 1-2-3 Kid…Bret Hart defeated Sid…Shawn Michaels & Lex Luger (substituting for Diesel) beat Men on a Mission.

Sydney, Nova Scotia, Canada – August 31, 1995 (2,000):  Jean-Pierre LaFitte pinned Bob Holly…Goldust defeated Duke Droese…WWF Women’s Champion Bertha Faye pinned Alundra Blayze after Hakushi interfered…Fatu fought Waylon Mercy to a double count out…Hakushi beat El Fuego (independent wrestler Rob Feugo)…Bret Hart defeated Isaac Yankem via disqualification…Yokozuna pinned Lex Luger after Owen Hart distracted Luger…Intercontinental Champion Shawn Michaels beat Owen Hart after Sweet Chin Music when Lex Luger distracted Owen.

Chatham, Ontario, Canada – August 31, 1995 (2,000; sell out):  Savio Vega pinned Rad Radford after a spinning heel kick…Hunter-Hearst Helmsley beat Aldo Montoya after a Pedigree…The Smoking Gunns beat the Blu Brothers after a Sidewinder…Razor Ramon beat Sid via disqualification when Kama interfered…Dean Douglas pinned Man Mountain Rock with a schoolboy…Skip beat Barry Horowitz after a small package when Sunny reversed the cover from the arena floor…The British Bulldog wrestled Henry Godwinn to a double count out…The Undertaker beat Kama in a casket match.

Montcton, New Brunswick, Canada – September 1, 1995 (2,000):  Hakushi beat Duke Droese…Bret Hart defeated Isaac Yankem via disqualification…WWF Women’s Champion Bertha Faye beat Alundra Blayze…Fatu wrestled Waylon Mercy to a double count out…Jean-Pierre LaFitte beat Bob Holly…Shawn Michaels & Lex Luger defeated WWF Tag Team Champions Owen Hart & Yokozuna via disqualification.

St. Johns, New Brunswick, Canada – September 3, 1995:  Jean-Pierre LaFitte pinned Bob Holly after rolling through the Pit Stop Plunge…Fatu wrestled Waylon Mercy to a double count out…WWF Women’s Champion Bertha Faye pinned Alundra Blayze with a Flair pin…Bret Hart defeated Isaac Yankem via disqualification after Yankem pushed the referee…Hakushi pinned Duke Droese after a running senton bomb…Shawn Michaels & Lex Luger defeated WWF Tag Team Champions Owen Hart & Yokozuna via disqualification when Yokozuna hit Luger with the Japanese flag (Note:  This was Luger’s last appearance in the WWF).

Titusville, Pennsylvania – September 3, 1995 (700):  Rad Radford beat Man Mountain Rock…Skip defeated Barry Horowitz…Razor Ramon defeated Dean Douglas via disqualification…Sid beat Savio Vega…Hunter-Hearst Helmsley defeated Aldo Montoya…The British Bulldog wrestled Henry Godwinn to a double count out…The Smoking Gunns defeated the Blu Brothers…The Undertaker beat Kama in a casket match.

And here were some major news items for this week in WWF history (courtesy of the September 4 and September 11 issues of The Wrestling Observer):

*The reported attendance for SummerSlam of 18,062 fans would make it the most attended pro wrestling show in the United States since last year’s SummerSlam, which was held in Chicago.

*The WWF seems to have decided against using the Phantasio character in the future as the Spellbinder was back to doing dates for the United States Wrestling Association (USWA).

*When doing July business comparisons, Meltzer notes that the WWF’s July live attendance is up 52.8%, gate receipts are up 18.5%, and television ratings are up 10.5% over the previous year.  In contrast, WCW has seen an 8.6% increase in live attendance and 15.2% increase in gate receipts, but television ratings are suffering a 9.5% decline.

*Aside from Diesel, some other WWF stars are banged up.  The 1-2-3 Kid is suffering from a bruised hand and a bothersome neck while Goldust suffered an injured hip in his first week on the road.

*Tatanka has been taken off the road for the time being as part of a suspension.  (Note:  This would be in response to a woman from Anaheim, California accusing several WWF wrestlers of sexual assault after a house show on December 29, 1994.  Tatanka and Jimmy del Ray stood accused, with Del Ray getting fired due to budget cuts and Tatanka being suspended for six months).

Up Next:  WWF Superstars for September 9, 1995