Is WrestleMania 13 the least inspiring line up of all the WrestleMania's on paper? Perhaps not (IX was particularly pathetic) but prior to the show was there really all that much that stood out as "must-see"? I'd argue not. Perhaps the hotch-potch of matches that made the card would have somehow been transformed if the original plan (which would have involved Shawn Michaels "returning the favour" from WM XII for Bret Hart) had gone ahead but whilst the line-up seemed uninspiring and unimportant at the time, history proved it to be anything of the sort.
For this was indeed the night that Stone Cold Steve Austin took a giant step towards genuine super-stardom. That his match with Bret Hart here was an afterthought once original plans had fallen through is perhaps just rewards for Austin, who was extremely unlucky during his WCW career. (Indeed just think how his two biggest moments in his "breakout" - here and King Of The Ring 1996 both came about as last minute changes to long-term plans). There isn't much more to be said about this classic Submission match (other than to, perhaps, praise Ken Shamrock's turn as guest referee) only to stress that it is every bit the five-star classic people say it is. It's a good job it is as well, or else the memory of WM 13 would be very poor indeed. The opening three matches are all fairly pointless (who would have thought here that The Rock and HHH would prove to be future world champions after their dull matches with The Sultan and Goldust respectively) and as decent as Owen Hart & Davey Boy Smith's clash with Mankind & Vader is it would have to be regarded as a disappointment given the talent involved. Amazingly, the Chicago streetfight pitting the Legion Of Doom (long since washed up) and Ahmed Johnson against The Nation Of Domination is a riot, and it's certainly better than the main event, where Sid and The Undertaker go for far too long and do little of any interest.
WrestleMania XIV represented a genuine turning point for the WWF. The signing of Mike Tyson (after WCW baulked at his asking price) to be guest enforcer for the main event was a masterstroke. Steve Austin was on the verge of becoming THE biggest name in the WWF and his match here against Shawn Michaels OFFICIALLY made him the number one in the promotion. Considering the genuine pain Michaels is in during this match it's amazingly good. At the time I considered the undercard to be full of gem's as well, but it's safe to say that not everything has aged as well as the main event. The 15 team battle royale to open the show was a spectacle, but nothing else, whilst Taka Michinoku's Cruiserweight title defence against Aguila is blatant card-filler. Things take an upturn next as HHH shows GENUINE promise for the first time in a thrilling tussle with Owen Hart and although it may seem a little tame today, the sheer excitment of Sable's in-ring debut was, at the time, amazing and marked her out, for what it's worth, as a genuine star in the company (as well as finshing her husband Marc Mero's career for all intents and purposes). The Intercontinental Title match between The Rock and Ken Shamrock is entertaining enough but is outshone by a riotous "Dumper Match" between Cactus Jack & Chainsaw "Terry Funk" Charlie and the New Age Outlaws. Rounding off the undercard, Kane and The Undertaker may not give us a great match but it is, once again, a spectacle (even if, at the time, I felt Kane should have won). Anyone who was a fan of Steve Austin and the "attitude" era of the WWF should get this to see where it all kicked into gear.
Perhaps this is a tagged classic for Steve Austin fans (albeit his two matches here are readily available elsewhere) but both shows are entertaining. 13 is saved by the Hart/Austin match but that is by no means the only reason to watch it. XIV is the night when the WWF's renaissance truly started and whilst not all of it has aged well, it is still a highly enjoyable show today and is well worth a second look.Read more ›
If i could use half stars, i would rate this as 3 1/2 stars.
Headbangers vs. New Blackjacks vs. Godwins vs. Doug Furnas/Phillip LaFon- This was ok, but that's it. Having two teams go out that fast just didn't work at all and this might as well have been the Godwinns against the Headbangers. Not terrible, but not great at all. Rating: D
Intercontinental Title: Rocky Maivia vs. The Sultan- This is just like the first match. It's just ok. The Rock hasn't hit is stride yet, and just in case you didn't know, The Sultan is Rikishi. Rating: D
HHH vs. Goldust- This went on nearly 15 minutes. This was far too long and far too boring. Rating: D
Tag Titles: Owen Hart/British Bulldog vs. Mankind/Vader- Nothing special at all here and the ending completely sucked. This was a disjointed mess the entire time and it went over 16 minutes. It's not completely horrible as the talent in there brings it up but still, this wasn't anything special in the slightest. Rating: D+
Steve Austin vs. Bret Hart- This is one of the greatest matches of all time. It's a war from start to finish and also one of the most complex matches you'll ever see. Bret was fighting time and the new Attitude in the form of Austin and despite the absolute best he could do, he couldn't get his way in the end. The fans are as big a part of this match as the guys out there, making Austin the new hero and Bret the top heel in the company in a single match. Excellent match and 100% required viewing for fans. Rating: A+
Nation of Domination vs. Legion of Doom/Ahmed Johnson- This is an entertaining match. It's a total brawl from the minute the bell rang and they kept it up for about ten minutes. All kinds of weapons, all kinds of violence and Ahmed showing off the whole time. This match was fun and they did exactly what they said it would be: a fight. Rating: B-
WWF World Title: Sid vs. Undertaker- This was very lackluster. It goes on for a bit too long, and wasn't too interesting. Rating: D+
Overall: This is a show where one match was supposed to be a classic and it was. The other good match was more or less by accident and meant nothing. Poor Mania and one of the worst ever. Overall rating: D+
Tag Team Battle Royal- This was awful. The ending was known far before the match ended, the eliminations were awful as they went far too fast, and there were WAY too many people in the ring at once with 30 being in there at the beginning. Rating: D
Light Heavyweight Championship: Taka Michinoku vs. Aguila- The match was fine but at the same time, this was rather pointless. It's the definition of filler as there was no reason to care about any character. Rating: C-
European Title: HHH vs. Owen Hart- This was a pretty solid match but they needed a few more minutes. I liked it though as Owen and HHH were both good in the ring with HHH being a shell of what he would become. Rating: B-
Marc Mero/Sable vs. Luna and Goldust- I didn't really like this match. It's not bad considering who is involved though. Rating: D+
Intercontinental Title: The Rock vs. Ken Shamrock- This was very quick but it did the job it was supposed to. Shamrock looked like an animal here and he massacred Rock with relative ease. It's a decent match, nothing else really. Rating: C
Tag Titles: Cactus Jack/Chainsaw Charlie vs. New Ago Outlaws- It's a mess, but it's a fun mess. Foley and Funk worked their butts off, and the match was okay. Rating: C
Undertaker vs Kane- While not great from a technical standpoint, this match's build up was out of this world. The feel of this match was great, so it makes you forget about the actual wrestling. It's a little too long though, and that puts it down a bit. Rating: C+
WWF World Title: Steve Austin vs. Shawn Michaels-It's obvious who was going to win here, but we watched to see how Tyson would play in and how Austin would do it. Looking back now and knowing how much pain Shawn was in because of his back, this match goes way up in impressiveness for me. Rating: B
Overall: If there's ever been a show where the torch was completely passed, you're looking at it. Austin winning the title finally is as about as important of an event as you can possibly have in company history. However, even with the Taker match, the solid work elsewhere and only two bad matches, you really do have an all around solid show. It's not great, but it's certainly worth checking out. Overall rating: C+
I recommend this set if you really are into your wrestling. One show is good, the other pretty bad, so if you are a casual fan. Watch the recommended matches online and skip buying this dvd.Read more ›
Love these tagged classic dvds ya get 2 awesome dvds 4 the price of 1 ..I purchased this set for the hbk austin and tyson match up at wrestlemania 14 and was able to watch for the 1st time a full event of wrestlemania 13 and Man the Bret hart stone cold battle will rock you straight outta your seat ..Another great tagged classic set here and recomended for any WWE Fan