Summerslam 1995: A Retrospective Look

Discussion in 'The Wrestling Archives' started by Dagger Dias, Jun 8, 2014.

  1. Dagger Dias

    Dagger Dias Natural 20
    Staff Member Global Moderator

    Sep 22, 2008
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    This summer I'll be looking back on each of the previous Summerslam events, one by one. Every few days I will submit a new topic until we reach 2014's edition of the 2nd biggest brand in WWE.

    This thread will be for discussing.... Summerslam 1995!


    Summerslam 1995 took place on August 27, 1995. It was held at Civic Arena in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Here are the results of the matches from this show:

    1. Hakushi defeated The 1-2-3 Kid in a singles match (09:27)

    2. Hunter Hearst Helmsley defeated Bob Holly in a singles match (07:10)

    3. The Smoking Gunns (Billy and Bart) defeated The Blu Brothers (Jacob and Eli) (with Uncle Zebekiah) in a tag team match (06:09)

    4. Barry Horowitz defeated Skip (with Sunny) in a singles match (11:21)

    5. Bertha Faye (with Harvey Wippleman) defeated Alundra Blayze (c) in a singles match for the WWF Women's Championship (04:37)

    6. The Undertaker (with Paul Bearer) defeated Kama (with Ted DiBiase) in a Casket match (16:26)

    7. Bret Hart defeated Isaac Yankem, D.D.S. via Disqualification in a singles match (16:07)

    8. Shawn Michaels (c) defeated Razor Ramon in a Ladder match for the WWF Intercontinental Championship (25:03)

    9. Diesel (c) defeated King Mabel (with Sir Mo) in a singles match for the WWF Championship (09:14)

    Now, here are some discussion questions concerning the event:

    What was your favorite match on this show, and why did you like it the most? What about the worst match of this show, why did you like it the least?

    If you could change a few things about Summerslam 1995, what would it be and why?

    You may only use wrestlers who were available at the roster at that time or make changes that could have realistically taken place in August 1995. Please keep in mind the situations going into the show such as who could actually have been pushed into a title match, or what songs existed back then if you wanted to change the show's theme music, and so forth.

    You may only discuss Summerslam 1995 in this thread. The remaining Summerslam events will be getting their own retrospective threads, any posts regarding other events will be considered spam and you risk getting an infraction.

    Discuss! :)
  2. The Brain

    The Brain King Of The Ring

    Mar 8, 2009
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    Don't believe all the criticism. SummerSlam 95 wasn't THAT bad. Yes, the main event was God awful. Yes, the roster was a little thin. No, this was not as big as some of the past SummerSlam events. With that said it is still an enjoyable show to watch. It certainly wasn't torture to sit through as some have suggested over the years. The WWF was going through a rough time but they did a good job with what they had.

    The 123 Kid vs. Hakushi was a good opener. It was a fast paced high flying match that was just slightly ahead of its time and a little preview of the new style that was coming in. Hunter Hearst Helmsley vs. Bob Spark Plug Holly may have seemed like pointless filler but it was a good introduction to Helmsley on ppv. I've got mixed feelings about Bret Hart vs. Isaac Yankem. I'm not crazy about someone making their in ring debut against a main event guy on a big ppv. On the other hand that did make it seem like we had a big new star. It was just kind of hard to accept an evil dentist as a new star. Even in 1995 I think fans just kind of knew that this goofy gimmick was just an introduction and this guy would eventually be a big player. I didn't expect him to be around 19 years later but considering what Yankem became I don't mind this match. One match that I think is a little overlooked is the casket match between Undertaker and Kama. I thought this was actually a very good match. There had been a few casket matches by this time but I think this was the one where they found a good formula actually using some spots with the casket instead of just trying to roll the opponent in.

    My favorite match has to be the IC ladder match. I've heard some people say they prefer this match over the famous WM10 ladder match. While I don't agree with that I certainly see why some have that opinion and wouldn't bother to argue it. This was different from the first match which was a good thing. A lot of times in matches like this a rematch is simply a repeat of the first. There was a whole different flow to this match which made it different enough to stand on its own. I have to say I wasn't crazy about the way the match came about. HBK vs. Sid was already announced and was the feud going on at the time. That summer Gorilla Monsoon took over as president of the WWF. He literally just said he wanted to see a rematch from WM10 and Sid got booted from the match. Since the history was there and the match was good it made up for the lack of story but I would have liked to have seen a little more thought put into the build here.

    My least favorite match was the main event. Diesel vs. Mabel just didn't do it for me, or for anybody else for that matter. I give credit for WWF trying to make Mabel into a main event threat but it just wasn't working. Maybe somebody like Hogan or Hart could have gotten a better match out of Mabel, but Diesel vs. Mabel was just bad.

    One thing I found odd about this show was how the tag champions were just left off. It's not so much that the title weren't defended but this show could have used a little more established talent. I would have done one of two things. Either postpone the Davey Boy Smith's heel turn and have him and Lex Luger challenge Owen Hart and Yokozuna, or I would have done Davey's heel turn a little sooner and had him challenge Diesel in the main event. Now that I think about it there is a third option. Leave Davey's heel turn alone and have him vs. Lex Luger. Either way Davey should have somehow been on this show.
  3. CrucifiedRaven

    CrucifiedRaven The Evenflow Effect

    Aug 12, 2012
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    I remember this being a pretty poor show. And looking at it on paper, it looks terrible for a big PPV.

    Best match:
    For me would have been Shawn/Razor in the ladder rematch from WMX, even though it was pretty random. What is the reason for the Michaels/Sid match being scrapped? That was the main feud they had been building up.

    Worst match:
    The main event, Diesel/Mabel. I don't know how they ever thought Mabel would be a main event player. They had a lot of big guys who were built up for one-off matches like Bundy and Kama and that's what became of Mabel as well. They wasted the King of the Ring on him, only for the purpose of him losing at SummerSlam. Much like WMXI, Bret and Undertaker were also wasted in insignificant midcard feuds. I think both Bret/Lawler and Undertaker/The Million Dollar Corporation had both been going on for far too long.

    As for changes, this is what I'd have liked to see:

    WWF Championship
    Diesel 'C' vs Bret "Hitman" Hart

    I think this would have been far more intriguing than Mabel and Isaac Yankem. I'd have Bret take the title here instead of a couple months later at Survivor Series.

    No Holds Barred Match
    Shawn Michaels vs Psycho Sid

    This was the main match they were building towards. Not sure why it didn't happen, but Michaels was above the IC strap at this point and this would have continued to build him to the title shot at WM12.

    Undertaker vs King Mabel

    I'm assuming I can't change the fact that Mabel won the KOTR, so he's getting a big push regardless. But I'd have this feud start at SummerSlam, and still build towards their future casket match. Undertaker should have moved on from the Million Dollar Corporation at this point.

    WWF Intercontinental Championship - Ladder Match
    Jeff Jarrett 'C' vs Razor Ramon

    They had been feuding over the title ever since the Royal Rumble, and it probably could have stretched out to SummerSlam in a proper blow off where Razor finally regains the title. If Razor Ramon didn't get injured earlier around the KOTR, I would have had him win the tournament as well.

    Lex Luger vs The British Bulldog

    I guess they didn't know that Lex was going to show up on Nitro a week or so after this show, so they couldn't bury him on his way out. But regardless, I think this power vs power match between the two tag team members should have happened. In the WM series of these retrospectives, I proposed having this match at WM11 because I think it would have been a good feud, turning Luger heel again instead of Davey. I think the fans always loved Davey as a face.

    WWF Tag Team Championship
    Yokozuna & Owen Hart 'C' vs 123 Kid & Bob Holly

    This is unfortunate. The tag division was pretty weak, especially on the babyface side of things. Yoko and Owen had just defeated The Smoking Gunns and The Allied Powers, so they didn't have many teams left to feud with.

    HHH vs Savio Vega
    Blayze 'C' vs Faye
  4. Cub McCallister

    Cub McCallister Pre-Show Stalwart

    Mar 5, 2014
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    This summerslam has good and bad matches with the main event being terrible in my opinion and the card needs to be changed for the better:

    1) Hunter Hearst Helmsley Vs Fatu.
    This can be a nice opener with HHH getting the win over Fatu.

    2) Tatanka Vs Adam Bomb
    Filler Match.

    3) Owen Hart & Yokozuna (C) Vs Smoking Gunns Vs Blu Brothers Vs Holly & Kidd
    Wwf Tag Titles Match. This would be a good addition to the card where hart and yoko retain the straps in a heel manner.

    4) Lex Luger Vs Crush
    This would be a good match for both men who are strong and Crush would go over Luger and that would lead to his departure.

    5) The Undertaker Vs King Mabel
    Casket Match. Have Mabel go over Taker to give him a better push.

    6) Bret Hart Vs Kama Mustafa
    Have this match instead of Issac Yankem and have Lawler go to Kama to take out Hart.

    7) Razor Ramon (C) Vs Jeff Jarrett
    Intercontinetal Title Ladder Match. They were feuding over the title and have Ramon retain the title again.

    8) Shawn Michaels Vs Sycho Sid
    No DQ Match. Have Sid go over and pummel Michaels in the process.

    9) Diesel (C) Vs British Bulldog
    Wwf Title Match. Have Bulldog win the KOTR tournament and challenge diesel to a fight for the gold and turn heel in the process.
  5. Wrestlingaholic

    Wrestlingaholic Championship Contender

    Feb 9, 2014
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    Severely underrated ppv, people are swayed by the poor main event. The early vestiges of the attitude era were starting to be seen here (very early) in that this card had some very physical matches and the ppvs that followed continued the pattern.

    Best match was obviously the ladder match
  6. Pedigree1

    Pedigree1 AJ Lee calls me everynight!!

    Jun 19, 2011
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    Let me try this again my browser crashed and i was about to hit send..

    Anyway,this was actually a decent PPV despite the lack of starpower for this year.. Definitely a transition period.

    The opening segment was quite good.. Definitely ahead of its time,and a sign of things to come like the brain said.. Great match..

    The tag team champions were not on the card,which is a head scratcher to me.. Davey Boy,turned heel why not at least have him on the card.. I would have dumped that pointless Horowitz vs Skip match and have had Davey Boy demolish Luger in a match.. They needed to have davey on that card.. HHH solid debut,was great.. A sign of things to come from the Future King of Kings,good debut PPV wise..

    Of course my favorite match was HBK vs Razor. Amazing chemistry between these two and some argue that this match was better than the original at WM.. I kinda give the edge to the WM match but this one was just as good.. Worth the price of admission alone..

    The ME match,was well awful.. Mabel god bless him,did not belong anywhere near a Main event match let alone a title match.. This is where the lack of starpower really hurt WWE i felt they just didnt have any other options at this point.. Mabel tried he did,but this match just did not deliver
  7. Judah's Lion

    Judah's Lion the Icon

    Apr 5, 2010
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    SummerSlam 95 is a bit of an oddity. it was hit and miss for sure, with some decent hits and big misses. yet it is still a bit under-rated and overly criticized. with all due respect to those that have stated, both on this forum and on others regarding this time period, i don't feel that the roster was too thin to put together a decent card. just some bad booking decisions leading to this event and some names inexplicably left off for the night. where were Owen Hart, Yokozuna, Lex Luger, British Bulldog and Sid?

    i love Hakushi vs. 123 Kid as the opener. it really was a tad ahead of its time and a really fun match to watch. that said, i'd still switch it up, for better or for worse. Triple H vs. 123 Kid is my change. they'd have a good to great match also and it'd be a fun foreshadowing of years to come.

    Smoking Gunns vs. Blu Brothers stays as is. just a random tag filler. i'd also keep the Women's Championship match the same.

    Tag Team Titles: Owen/Yokozuna vs. Men on a Mission. Yokozuna and Mabel were both huge guys obviously but still decently agile for their size. it'd be fun to see them square off here i think. champs retain and Mabel goes heel here instead of months prior as he did.

    Luger vs. Bulldog seemed like a natural fit. they were tag partners and so the tension and split is as organic a story there is. personally i'd want to see Luger the heel and Bulldog the face since i enjoyed both men in those roles than the reverse.

    Taker in a Casket Match was good for here. certainly a big match feel for SummerSlam. but his feud with the Million Dollar Corporation was already over a year old, so i'd do the gimmick but switch the feud. have Taker win King of the Ring and feud with Jerry Lawler instead.

    speaking of Jerry Lawler, his feud with Bret Hart lasted over 2 years by this point. so extending it even more with his evil dentist was just too much for me. pit up Lawler with Taker in the Casket Match and free up Hart for other things. as crazy as it sounds, i'd do Hart vs. Hakushi here. their match on Raw is a hidden gem and would be even greater on this stage.

    IC Title: Razor vs. Psycho Sid in a No DQ Match. Razor/HBK in a Ladder (re)Match was good to great, but never had a chance competing with their original at Mania X. plus the lack of storyline for this match hurt it. so i'd do Razor vs. Sid here instead.

    WWF Title: Diesel vs. HBK. in my world, Diesel would have won the Royal Rumble in 95 and beat Bret Hart for the World Title at Mania 11. then here at SummerSlam, you can do Diesel vs. HBK in what was their Mania 11 match.

    so there's my SummerSlam card, again, for better or for worse.
  8. HeenanGorilla

    HeenanGorilla Championship Contender

    Apr 20, 2011
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    Weak time for WWE, but the Razor/HBK ladder match was MUCH better than their WrestleMania match. Not a lot of reasons to ever pop this DVD in, but that match will keep that disc out of my garbage can.
  9. THTRobtaylor

    THTRobtaylor Once & Future Wrestlezone Columnist

    Jun 2, 2006
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    This was pretty much the nadir of Summerslam a.k.a. The Kliq Summerslam and the point where after this things could only get better in the WWF.

    A bad Wrestlemania followed by some even worse talent decisions (Mabel being pushed, Bam Bam being allowed to leave despite being in the main event just months earlier for one, the advent of the "gimmick enhancment talent" like Salvatore Sincere, TL Hopper) and the switch to monthly PPV's without a roster to back it up bit hard at SS95.

    Some creative at the time was good but just mishandled, case in point was Davey Boy's turn on Diesel. It clearly should have been at Luger's expense and while Davey was a great heel after than, being "fed to Diesel" shortly after his turn set the tone that he couldn't and wouldn't get the big belt. Luger's contract was expiring THAT day... so you do the proper thing and he puts someone over if he hasn't signed that deal by bell time... King of The Ring would have indeed been better served by a Davey/Luger final to cement the turn and setting Davey up for a title match at Summerslam.

    However the one caveat here is that I THINK this was about the time he caved the guys skull in for coming on to his wife, so legal issues may have kept him off the card.

    Before I get into it, let's look at what was there...

    The opener was match of the year and still in my top 5 ever. I was a big fan of Hakushi/Jinsei Shinzake from my tapes and was buzzing when he came to the WWF... even if his initial booking was wrong (Bret could have lost on that debut and it not hurt at all) by this time the writing was on the wall that the character hadn't worked... He was a little too ahead of his time, Shinja hadn't worked as a manager and the comedy ethnic face role beckoned... However he did put on this one last stand so to speak in the match with Kid showing the first Space Tiger Flying Drop on WWF TV for one... that move to this day astounds me, that someone can do such complex moves and literally backwards leap over a top rope in one motion.

    Kid did a great job and it was "up there in" great openers for the big 5 events.

    Skip and Sunny's debut was memorable again as I knew them from SMW tapes (all I could get in the UK) and I REALLY liked Tammy back then. She looked hot, Chris looked strong in the ring and even though the ridiculous Horowitz push prevailed... it showed the right way to debut a lower mid heel... brag, underestimate, lose, recover stronger.

    There is always debate over the 2 ladder matches and while this was strong I always preferred the first... I liked the idea of the Ladder as a weapon more than their "you can't use it as one" in the 2nd match. By then neither guy really should have been around the IC title picture as they were above it and that title around Hakushi, Davey Boy or even Bret's waist would have been far more valuable. Imagine Bret v Davey for the IC again 3 years later? or Shawn v Bret for the IC... would have loved to have seen that more than this.

    So what was wrong with the card...

    A lot... but not because of poor matches as such, just REALLY bad choices in the run up to it. The decision was clearly already made the belts were going to Shawn and Diesel and thus the champs Owen and Yoko were left off the show... That was a massive mistake that robbed a great match from the card... Davey and Lex could have split up with Davey siding with Owen and "ejecting" Yoko from the group... The Gunns were close to being worthy and there was a bucket load of makeshift teams/talent that could have had a match with Owen and Yoko, even heel v heel... Why not have Bundy and Tatanka for example with DiBiase buying the shot?

    King of The Ring was a massive error for WWE, giving it to Mabel purely to try and give Diesel a "big as him" opponent wasn't smart. There were heels not used on the show like Jeff Jarrett who would have fit into the "one off title shot" better if they really weren't going to use a bigger name... The ONLY true positive to be taken from it and it really is a pivotal shift is Mabel was then put in with Taker...and hurt Taker badly... that caused them to change tack from "Monster of the Month" to making The Deadman a serious contender and start him working with the top workers... make no mistake he was not the legendary worker at that stage and his true gift hadn't been discovered... that he learned and improved exponentially by working with Bret, Shawn, Foley, Austin and the like. Mabel got a lot of stick for his "clumsiness" but it's the biggest factor in creating the Phenom... without it, Taker is gone to WCW by 97.

    Bam Bam leaving was in no small part down to him not being on this show. It was a perfect time for him to re-emerge as a face, perhaps teaming with Diesel in a tag team main event or taking on Sid or Bundy from the Corporation?

    I suspect a LOT had to do with Vince wanting to reduce payoffs for the show, so some of the bigger names were left off it as this was the "crunch time" for WWF money wise.

    They survived it, and the upward trend began shortly after with the debuts of Goldust, Steve Austin but perhaps the thing that is worst about this show is the sheer duplicity of some of the people involved... Lex knew what he was doing and was basically gonna screw Vince the following night... does that mean he was "hurt" and couldn't compete? Also this would have been right about the time Hall began serious talks with Bischoff... he would have at least been approached and he probably had a good idea that he would be able to take Nash with him as their contracts were up at the same time, they they still ran guys like Shane Douglas and Bam Bam out of the territory, even though they knew they likely weren't gonna stay.

    If VINCE had had any inkling
  10. Mac

    Mac Pre-Show Stalwart

    Mar 2, 2014
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    This ppv was a massive fail. Bad booking, and leaving stars off the show made no sense to me. My favorite match was easily Shawn/Razor, IMO it's better than the first one. Hakushi/Kid was good too. Anyway on top of bad booking and leaving stars off the show. The ones that made it on were put in bad angles/ programs (except Shawn and Razor). Despite the roster being thin, they still had enough stars on the roster to put together a good show. These are the changes I would make.

    Opening match- 123 Kid vs Hakushi

    I'd leave this as is. Great opener and a pretty underrated match.

    British Bulldog vs Lex Luger

    Bulldog just turned heel so why not have him face Luger instead. Since Bulldog was headed for a big push, giving him a win over a Luger would've been huge.

    WWF World Tag Team Championship Match- Owen Hart/Yokozuna(c) vs Smoking Gunns

    No reason for the tag champs to not be on the card. Especially considering who were the champs at the time.

    Grudge Match- Undertaker vs Mabel

    In my world Mabel never wins the KOTR. But he still gets his singles push. Plus the Million Dollar Corporation feud had ran its course at this point. This feud starts at the KOTR during their tournament match. Mabel gets a signature win over Taker here.

    Hunter Hearst Helmsley vs Savio Vega

    Showcase match for HHH and Vega who was getting a decent push at this point.

    Intercontinental Championship Match-Shawn Michaels(c) vs Razor Ramon
    This match stays as is.

    Sid vs Bam Bam Bigelow

    Both guys had history and were semi feuding with each other around this time.

    WWF Championship Match- Diesel(c) vs Bret Hart

    You give Diesel a win over Hart here knowing that Hart would get his win back later in the year.
  11. Cub McCallister

    Cub McCallister Pre-Show Stalwart

    Mar 5, 2014
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    I think this was the worst Summerslam ppv in years, my card would be:

    1) Hakushi Vs The 1-2-3 Kid
    Singles Match. Stays the same, nice opener here with 1-2-3 Kid getting the win.

    2) Hunter Hearst Helmsley Vs Savio Vega
    Singles Match. I saw this on someone else's card and it would be a decent match with HHH getting the win.

    3) Yokozuna & Hart (C) Vs Smoking Guns Vs The Blu's Brothers Vs The Bodydonnas
    Wwf Tag Team Title Four Corner Elimination Tag Team Match. Have this on the card with the Smoking Guns getting the win and the titles.

    4) Alundra Blayze (C) Vs Bertha Faye
    Wwf Womens Title Match. Stays the same.

    5) The Undertaker Vs Kama
    Casket Match. Stays the same, I liked this match.

    6) Bam Bam Bigelow Vs Psycho Sid
    Singles Match. Add this to the card with Sid getting the win.

    7) Bret Hart Vs Isaac Yankem
    Singles Match. Stays the same.

    8) Shawn Michaels (C) Vs Razor Ramon
    Wwf Intercontinental Title Ladder Match. Stays the same, I enjoyed this match.

    9) Diesel (C) Vs The British Bulldog
    Wwf Title Match. I would have this as the main event with Diesel getting the win here and then having Yokozuna, Owen Hart and Mabel all interfering after the match and attacking the champ only for Luger to run out and make the save.

    That's my card and I think its better than the original card.

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