Summerslam (1997) Poster

(1997 TV Special)

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Bret Hart's Last SummerSlam Appearance
Big Movie Fan11 January 2003
SummerSlam 1997 was one of many great PPV events in 1997 (a fantastic year for the WWF). It had great matches throughout.

At the time of this PPV, The Hart Foundation had been feuding with stars such as Steve Austin and Shawn Michaels and there were some strong happenings in this event.

One good match pitted the late British Bulldog VS Ken Shamrock in a match where the Bulldog would eat dog food if he lost. An entertaining match-up.

The late Owen Hart faced Steve Austin in a match memorable for the fact that Owen nearly ended Austin's career (by accident). Despite what people say, it was not intentional on Owen's part;it was an accident which does happen in wrestling. Worrying about it, especially when Austin made a full recovery, is pointless.

Hart Foundation member, the late Brian Pillman faced Goldust in a match where Pillman would have to wear a dress if he lost. He lost-and wore a dress on subsequent WWF PPV events.

The best match of the night was Bret Hart VS WWF Champion The Undertaker in a match officiated by special referee Shawn Michaels. The stipulation was that if Bret Hart lost, he would never be allowed to wrestle on American soil again. It was a strong match and the presence of Hart's enemy Shawn Michaels added to the match. In the end, Bret Hart took the WWF Title for a fifth time thanks to inadvertent help from Shawn Michaels. This would be Bret Hart's last SummerSlam appearance.

SummerSlam '97 is worth checking out.
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A ticking clock
SlyGuy2123 May 2018
Warning: Spoilers
1st Match: HHH vs Mankind, Steel Cage match. In order to prevent Chyna from interfering for the 80th time, these two are having this match. I keep forgetting that these matches used to have the thick bars instead of just steel mesh. for some reason, it looks like they actually hurt themselves against the cage, which really adds to the match. The typical spots are all here, the near escapes, the getting pulled back over the cage, all that, but it flows better than most other cage matches. Foley hits Hunter with a piledriver, don't worry, we'll get there. The gimmick is also kind of pointless because Chyna gets involved any way, irksome to me. The big spot in the match is Foley doing a Superfly Elbow off the top of the cage, if you look closely you can see Chyna missing her cue before the spot, which is weird. The match is a pretty good way to start the show, and the best match these 2 have had so far. Rating: 4/5

2nd Match: Goldust vs Brian Pillman. I believe this is Pillman's first singles match on a WWF PPV since he joined them. His gimmick is fire, unfortunately the match doesn't give him a lot. It's over in 7 minutes, and was more a comedy match than anything. Decent for what it is though, sad that this would be one of his last matches. Rating: 3/5

3rd Match: The Godwinns vs The Road Warriors. The Godwinns are swearing revenge for LOD accidentally breaking Henry's neck awhile back, don't worry, we'll get there. The Godwinns come out with a Confederate flag, and are apparently full heels now, of course they'd get booed anyway cuz of who they're facing. This has the typical heel/face tag team stuff, but it works well. The real awkward part is that the story revolves around breaking someone's neck as revenge for an accident. Maybe too extreme for my tastes. Decent win for LOD. Rating: 3/5

4th Match: Ken Shamrock vs The British Bulldog. This only really serves to push Shamrock's unstable gimmick, as he gets beat on for most of the match, yet explodes when hit in the face with dog food. He destroys the can over Davey Boy's skull, then chokes him out for like 3 minutes. It did a lot to further his character, but a decent match at it's core. Rating: 3/5

5th Match: Los Boricuas vs The Disciples of the Apocalypse. So after getting fired from the Nation of Domination, Crush and Vega created their own teams and started this gang war angle. More than likely an attempt to copy the nWo, but without any real heat, at least yet. Aside from Vega, Crush, Brian Lee, and one dude with a REALLY hairy back, I don't know anyone here. The match is pretty dull, none of these guys have any real connetion to the crowd, or any impressive moves, so it just exists until the Nation show up (with a now-heel Ahmed Johnson) and cause the Disciples to lose. An attempt to build a feud that didn't work. Rating: 2.5/5

6th Match: Stone Cold Steve Austin vs Owen Hart, WWF Intercontinental Championship. This is THAT match. It had a good story going into it, both guys were good, the match goes really well for 99% of it, then Owen botches a piledriver and almost snaps Austin's neck. It's bad, real bad, it started a history of neck problems for him that led to his retirement in 2003. The match then ends awkwardly, with Austin using a really weak roll-up to beat Owen. Awkward, but understandable. Austin is then rushed to the hospital and would be OOA for a few months. This is the main reason the show is remembered, and while the match is good up until that point, I don't feel comfortable giving a rating to it. I won't give it my usual rating, or hold it against the show as a whole, because it was an unfortunate accident. Rating: None.

7th Match: Bret Hart vs The Undertaker, WWF Chmapionship with Shawn Michaels as the referee. Several stories going into this. Bret has said he won't wrestle in the US again if he loses, same goes for Michaels if he favors one guy over the other, and Taker may be a murderer. It works out a lot better than you think, as the crowd is super into this. Bret almost tears Taker's leg off, as Shawn just tries to maintain control of this brawl. We get some appearances from Paul Bearer, Pillman, and a noticeably concerned Owen Hart. The match is very good though, eventually leading to nice ending where Bret spits on Michaels, then Michaels accidentally nails Taker with a chair. Shawn then begrudgingly counts the three and leaves. The crowd pulls a WCW and fills the ring with trash, as the timer starts on Bret's match with Shawn in Montreal. Despite the finish, I liked how this match goes a lot, so I just might consider it being on my "Match of the Year" list. Rating: 4.5/5

Final Rating: 7 out of 10. Despite the ticking clock that is Austin's match, and the decent at best mid-card, the show is still pretty entertaining.
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It has some memorable moments
callanvass6 September 2016
Warning: Spoilers
Live from East Rutherford, NJ

Attendance 20,213

Your commentators are Vince McMahon, Jerry Lawler & Jim Ross

Steel Cage Match

Hunter Hearst Helmsley (W/Chyna) Vs Mankind

Mankind wins. This is one of the most underrated cage matches. It had great drama and a lot of exciting action. Chyna's interference made Mankind's improbable win all the more special.Foley and Triple H were beginning to show the great chemistry they would have in the next couple years. I also liked Mankind paying tribute to Jimmy Snuka by dropping an elbow from the top of the cage. If you're a big Mick Foley fan, you know he hitchhiked to MSG to watch Jimmy Snuka face Don Muraco in a Steel Cage Match.

***1/2 out of 5

Governor Christie Whitman is presented with the WWF Championship. She got booed pretty loudly.

Loser Wears a Dress Match

Goldust (W/Marlena) Vs Brian Pillman

The loser is forced to wear a dress the next night on Raw. Goldust wins after Marlena nails Pillman with her purse. This was a mediocre match. Goldust was in the midst of a failed face run and this feud wasn't very engaging. The crowd wasn't that invested either.

*1/2 out of 5

The Legion of Doom Vs The Godwinns

LOD wins after delivering a spike piledriver to Henry Godwinn. This was a below average match. As legendary as LOD is, they aren't miracle workers. It was often boring to watch.

*1/2 out of 5

European Championship

The British Bulldog (C) Vs Ken Shamrock

Bulldog wins by DQ after Ken Shamrock snaps. He applies a choke hold to The Bulldog and refuses to let go. Officials try to stop Shamrock, but Shamrock takes them all down with belly to belly suplexes. Shamrock snapping was pretty cool, but the match itself is very forgettable. The British Bulldog resorted to a reverse chinlock way too many times in this match.

*1/4 out of 5

Los Boricuas Vs The DOA

Los Boricuas wins, thanks to interference from The Nation of Domination. Yikes! This was really bad. It sapped all the energy out of the building and seemed to drag on forever. This gang warfare stuff might have been cool at the time, but it doesn't hold up very well now.

3/4* out of 5

Intercontinental Championship

Owen Hart (C) Vs 'Stone Cold' Steve Austin

Austin wins the title. This is a pretty good match between these two. It's mostly famous because Owen Hart broke Austin's neck with a tombstone piledriver. This would affect Austin's career in many ways. His career would be shortened and he would be forced to permanently turn into a brawler. It's amazing that Austin was able to muster up the strength to roll up Owen. He's a gutsy performer.

***1/4 out of 5

WWF Championship

The Undertaker (C) Vs Bret Hart

The guest referee is Shawn Michaels. Bret Hart wins the title after Shawn Michaels accidentally nails The Undertaker with a chair. This match certainly had its moments, but it's a bit too inconsistent to be anything overly memorable. I thought it started off slowly and picked up after a while. The inconsistency brings it down. Shawn Michaels would turn heel after this.

**3/4 out of 5

This PPV is a decent one. I definitely enjoyed it to a certain extent. Thankfully, Austin's career wasn't over after this, otherwise the WWE would have been in big trouble.

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There is some good stuff and bad stuff
amanwhorocks29 March 2014
Warning: Spoilers
1. Cage Match: Hunter Hearst Helmsley Vs. Mankind - For me, that was their best match. Mankind uncled HHH and then climbed first. 9/10

2. Goldust Vs. Brian Pillman - Yeah, Pillman, who is class better than Goldust had to job, *sigh* 6/10

3. The Godwinns Vs. Legion of Doom - Totally uninteresting match. 5.5/10

4. WWF European Title Match: Champ-TheBritish Bulldog Vs. Ken Shamrock - Double DQ in an unnecessary match. 5/10

5. 8-man Tag Team Match: Los Boricuas Vs. Disciples of the Apocalypse - Waste of time. A few jobbers... 5/10

6. WWF Intercontinental Title Match: Stone Cold Vs. Champ-Owen Hart - It was good thing, until Stone Cold got Hurt, by inverted Piledriver. 8/10

7. WWF World Heavyweight Title Match: Bret Hart Vs. Champ-The Undertaker - Bret again became World Champion. I like that 8/10
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Legitimate Super-Show
bh_tafe330 July 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Summerslam 1997 was a successful and entertaining event, headlined by a long awaited, well hyped WWE title match between Bret Hart and the Undertaker, given the catchy title "Hart and Soul." The night was built around the New Hart Foundation, who featured in four of the seven matches, three of which were for Championships.

The night started off with Mankind taking on Hunter Hearst Helmsley in a steel cage match. This match is famous for the enthusiastic interference of Chyna who slammed the cage door shut on Foley's head, and Foley's flying elbow off the top of the cage near the end of the match. Foley was able to jump off the top of the cage to the outside, negating Chyna's presence, and get the victory, before leaving to the Dude Love theme.

Next saw Goldust, accompanied by Marlena, taking on the Hart Foundation's Brian Pillman. Goldust was able to get the victory thanks to his wife, who smashed Pillman in the head with a glass jar out of the ref's sight, giving Goldust an easy roll up pin for the victory. Bad start to the night for the Harts.

Next up saw the Godwinns (Henry and Phineas) take on the Legion of Doom (Hawk and Animal). This was probably the worst match on the card, but had a memorable finish with the LOD doing a two man pile driver on Phineas to get the pin.

Did you know that the unsuccessful million dollar giveaway used on RAW in 2008 wasn't the first time the WWE had tried something like that? They were doing something similar right here at Summerslam 1997 with Million Dollar Chance Sweepstakes. Not great television more than a decade later, though I'm sure those who entered and won enjoyed it.

Brings us to the first Championship match of the night, with the British Bulldog putting the newly instated European Championship on the line against former UFC Heavyweight star Ken Shamrock. These two have a passable match, which the Bulldog wins by disqualification. Part of Shamrock's act was that he would snap during fights and couldn't be controlled. He snaps in this fight and gets carried away, hitting the Bulldog with a Vaseline jar and gets DQ'd. Not to be perturbed, he throws Bulldog back into the ring and puts him in a sleeper, with a bunch of refs coming out to pull him off the unconscious Bulldog. The Hart Foundation are 1 out of 2, and that win was not convincing at all.

Next it's time for an eight man tag team match between Los Boricuas and the Disciples of the Apocalypse. This one breaks down very quickly and then the Nation of Domination come out to get involved. I think Los Boricuas won the match, but the brawl went considerably longer. So who's the dominant faction in the WWE after this result? The answer of course is none of these three.

Brings us to the infamous Intercontinental Championship match between Owen Hart and Steve Austin. The build going into this had been solid, with IC Champion Owen pinning Austin in the main event of the previous month's Canadian Stampede PPV and then bragging about it for weeks on TV. Owen put his IC Title on the line against Austin under the proviso that the loser would have to kiss the winner's butt. And the two went out there and were having a perfectly entertaining match until Owen messed up a pile driver and broke Austin's neck. Austin was able to win the match in farcical fashion, getting Owen in a cradle that wouldn't have kept a toddler down for three, and was the new IC Champion, until he was forced to forfeit the title the following night due to the injury. This was a bad moment for all concerned and completely over shadowed an otherwise fine match and made the Hart Foundation 1 for 3 for the night.

Now comes the main event, with The Undertaker putting the WWE Title on the line against Bret Hart with Shawn Michaels guest refereeing. Michaels had been interviewed earlier in the night and had confirmed that he would not get another title shot if he showed any bias against his bitter enemy Bret Hart. Hart, in the meantime had vowed never to wrestle in the USA again if he lost. Hart and Undertaker had a good match, with Hart really pushing his luck with Michaels and eventually spitting in his face after Michaels had taken a chair off him. Michaels then attempted to hit Hart, who ducked, with the chair, but instead hit Undertaker. Michaels had no choice but to make the count and Hart was WWE Champion for the 5th and final time.

Michaels had earned the Undertaker's wrath, while Taker had problems of his own, with his former manager Paul Bearer threatening to reveal a dark secret from his past now that he had lost the title.

There you have it, Summerslam 1997, a legitimate Super-Show that paid off the story lines going in and set up later ones. Overshadowed somewhat by Austin's injury, but still an entertaining show today. If Austin's injury had been tragic, nothing could prepare fans for the fate of his former tag team partner, Brian Pillman, just two months later.
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I laughed my ass off during this pay-per-view
goodxxgod-29 July 2004
Warning: Spoilers
I was laughing so hard during this pay-per-view and you'll have to read this review to find out why.

Warning Spoilers!

Mankind vs. Hunter Hearst Helmsley(Steel Cage):

This match was a very good opener for a pay-per-view, I was expecting this match to be later in the show but it was all good. Both these men put on a good match in the cage, even Chyna got involved in the action by trying to ruin Mankind's chances of escaping the cage but eventually Mankind was able to escape the cage, but not before pulling a Superfly and delivered a diving elbow to HHH from the top of the cage.

Goldust vs. Brian Pillman:

I have to admit I was rooting for Brian Pillman when I saw this match but Goldust was able to get a cheap victory when Marlena(Terri Runnels) hit Pillman with her purse which had a brick inside.

L.O.D vs. The Godwins:

I never really cared for this feud between these two teams but if I wanted anyone to win it would have been the Legion Of Doom, and they did win so I guess everything worked out for the better.

British Bulldog vs. Ken Shamrock(European Championship):

I always hated Ken Shamrock and I was a big Hart Foundation supporter so I was behind the Bulldog 100% and it seemed like he was doing pretty good until he put dog food on Shamrock, and then Shamrock went crazy and started hitting all the ref's, the match eventually came down to Shamrock putting the sleeper hold on the bulldog until eventually he let go and left.

D.O.A vs. Los Boricuas(Eight Man Tag Match):

I really didn't give a rat's ass about this match so all I will say is that Los Boricuas won.

Owen Hart vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin(Intercontinental Championship):

This was a pretty good match even though Austin dominated the match I still have to say this was the second best match of the night even though Owen Hart lost, I hoped that Austin would have been gone for good when he broke his neck because I hate him.

Bret Hart vs. The Undertaker(World Wrestling Federation Championship):

This was the best match of the night and as far as I'm concerned Shawn Michaels being the special guest referee didn't effect the match at all even though most people would say that if it wasn't for Shawn Michaels, Bret Hart wouldn't have won but that's a load of bullcrap Bret once again proved that he's the best there is, the best there was, and the best there ever will be, and the reason I was laughing was because before the pay-per-view the stupid Americans(I'm Canadian)were putting Bret Hart down and when he won they all shut the hell up! hahaha!

So overall a good pay-per-view with the right man prevailing in the end(Bret Hart).
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