With Jessie unfortunately going on an indefinite hiatus, I'm going to take over the series he created which I really liked, TV Time Remaining. For the uninitiated, this will basically be review of the main events (“main event” in this case classified as the last match on the show) from a whole year of TV. Unlike with the first of these articles a while back, these will now be split into four pieces per year for easier reading. Part 1 will cover January through March, part 2 - April through June, Part 3 - July through September, and the final part will cover October through December.
1. Mini Vader vs. Mascarita Sagrada Jr. (1/4/97) – 3
Before the match even began, I could tell this wasn’t going to be taken seriously at all as Todd Pettingill did a redition of one of the most annoying songs of the 90s, Macarena, while changing the words to make fun of Sagrada. I have to comment also on the lighting. This particular show was lit like shit and every surrounding the ring was really, really dark. Not sure where Mini Vader came from but he was moving around really good and took a wild bump after he missed a big corner charge and delivered a hard powerbomb late in the match. Sagrada busted out some sick aerials, including a huge dive to the floor. This felt more like a time killing sprint but it was fun for what it was.
2. Rocky Maivia vs. Razor Ramon #2 (1/11/97) – 3
Ok, I have to admit, this wasn’t the actual main event of this episode. A tag match with Furnas & LaFon agains the Headbangers closed this episode out but only about two minutes of it aired. This was the last match to air in full on this episode. I have to say, it was lit much better and you could clearly see the whole venue. Besides this little stint, did Razor Ramon #2 ever have a career anywhere? I didn’t hear much about him before or since. Also, why is the Honky Tonk Man at ringside? As for the match itself, it felt sort of sloppy in parts, much like the super nacho platter served at the restaruant they were wrestling in this night. Rocky took a beating for what seemed like the duration of the match after throwing two straight dropkicks to begin things. Can’t believe that Razor got beat with one of the crappiest shoulderbreakers I’ve ever seen.
3. Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. Goldust (1/18/97) – 2
This was the only episode to take place in a night club outside of New York as this was in San Antonio, the night before the Royal Rumble. I got pretty excited to hear this match announced for the show but was rather disappointed as this was barely a five minute match that morphed into a huge brawl courtesy of Terry Funk. Opening minutes before the first commercial were good but that was about it.
4. Sycho Sid vs. Crush (1/25/97) – 3
This certainly was a strange match on paper. I don’t think these two ever fought before or since. Sid tried to bang Crush’s head into the steps but missed. Gotta give it to Crush though, he sold it anyway. I enjoyed this because it had a brawling feel to it instead of a straight wrestling match. Sid reversing the heart punch was pretty much a a given. Interesting finish as Sid hit the powerbomb but instead of getting the pin, he grabbed a chair and started swinging it widly. Fairly decent match this was.
5. The Headbangers vs. The Godwinns (2/1/97) – 3
Trivia time! This is actually a re-match from the first ever Shotgun match when the Headbangers were dressed as the Flying Nuns. Phineas working as the face in peril was pretty good but both teams just seemed to be coasting. Headbangers hit a few nice offensive moves but it was painfully obvious that the crowd just wasn’t into this. Henry had some really shitty punches off the hot tag. The no contest finish with both teams brawling into the crowd felt like it was made up on the spot since the show ran out of time. Not much to see here.
6. The Godwinns & Aldo Montoya vs. Faarooq, Crush, & Savio Vega (2/8/97) – 4
First off, I should mention that the score on this is based on the fact that this was originally a singles bout between Savio and Aldo that got converted into a six-man when the Godwinns and the Nation wandered down to ringside. Aldo doing some of the best selling I’ve seen thus far on this set during the singles portion and just taking some killer kicks fro Savio. At the end of this whole segment, it really seemed pointless to make this a six-man since the Godwinns never got tagged in. Highlight of the six-man portion was Aldo busting out a nice DDT. Aside from that, it was basically a three-on-one handicap match with Aldo just getting completely squashed. Finish was really convoluted with a huge brawl around ringside and Aldo getting pinned in the chaos. Probably the best of the best of the night club main events as this was the last episode to air from those type locations.
7. The Headbangers vs. The New Blackjacks (2/22/97) – 2
This started as yet another match in a seemingly endless series between the Headbangers and the Godwinns but after about 30 seconds, the Blackjacks interfered, beating up the Godwinns. I was enjoying seeing Windham and Bradshaw stiff the Headbangers until there was MORE interference from the stupid Godwinns.
8. Henry Godwinn vs. Bradshaw (3/1/97) – 3
I was hoping that these two would have a pretty rough and rugged match but sad to say that was not the case here. Sure, there were a few hard hitting spots, like Hank’s big ol’ belly-to-belly suplex and Bradshaw countering with a big boot but most of this felt like they were just going through the motions. Of the two, I’d say Bradshaw was definitely working a bit more snug. Switcheroo at the end by the Blackjacks was a unique way to end it although it’s been done to death since.
9. Doug Furnas & Phi LaFon vs. Aldo Montoya & Bob Holly (3/8/97) – 4
Montoya and Holly seem like the world’s most random pairing, especially with them still using their old wacky gimmicks from 1995. The pace on this was pretty quick and brisk and the nearfall sequences with Holly and Furnas were surprisingly good and had the crowd into it. Montoya took a vicious head-and-arm suplex towards then end that made me cringe. Only thing I didn’t like about this was the really sloppy Doomsday Device attempt by Furnas and LaFon. Other than that, probably my favorite match out of this project thus far.
10. Hector Garza vs. Heavy Metal (3/15/97) – 4
Lucha on Shotgun? Sure, why the hell not. The matches on here seem to be more random by the week. Garza was the star of this match, busting out a wild dropkick at the beginning and taking a wild bump on the steps. Heavy Metal’s punching didn’t do a thing for me. I’ve seen a light wind have more effect than his shodding offense. Mat work here was decent, but nothing really extraordinary. Another fairly enjoyable match.
11. Goldust vs. Tony DeVito (3/22/97) – 2
Squash time and Goldust just destroyed DeVito, the poor schmuck. Pillman on commentary had me rolling saying that at least DeVito “will get a hot lunch” for competing. God, that was huge load to lift on the Curtain Call for Goldust to finish off the match.
12. The New Blackjacks vs. R.T Williams & Rod Bell (3/30/97) – 2
A match here in the vein of the old Steiner squashes were the Blackjacks just murder these hapless souls. Clothesline and brawling were featured by the Blackjacks as were neck braces and ice packs for the jobbers afterwards.