#91 – Hart v Undertaker v Austin v Vader, In Your House 13: Final Four, February 16, 1997

We begin our Road to WrestleMania this year with a stop in Chattanooga, TN to see if we can find Shawn Michael’s misplaced smile and review one of Black Cat’s favorite matches, the four way between Steve Austin, Bret Hart, the Undertaker, and a bloody, bloody Vader. Please support the podcast by visiting flairchop.com where you can buy our tremendous “mail-order wrestling gimmicks” t-shirt, posters, and the box set of our first 50 episodes. You can also get a free OSWP sticker by leaving a comment on the iTunes store.

This episode has been archived. It is available either by ordering the physical “OSWP Season 3 box set” with episodes 76-100 or it can be instantly downloaded in a digital version of the “OSWP Season 3 complete set” with episodes of 76-100. The physical box set will always be our favorite, as it comes with a full color booklet featuring art by our friend Dean Stahl and looks great on your bookshelf next to your coliseum home videos. The instant digital download version also comes with high resolution PDFs of the booklet that you can view on your computer. Both the physical box set and the digital download come with two bonus episodes featuring our reviews of the Clash of the Champions 9 and the Royal Rumble 1988. These episodes have never been available on flairchop.com. But if you only want to hear this one episode, we also offer the option of instantly downloading just the individual episode for a small price.

This episode has been archived in the Season 3 digital box set available for $9.99 at the OSWP Merch Store!


  1. Rusty Brooks Biggest Fan says:

    Thanks so much for uploading this today guys. My car broke down and I have to bum a ride to work tomorrow. Unfortunately, I have to work late, and no one can (or wants to) give me a ride home, so I am going to walk (10 miles) home in the cold and dark. But I will have this Podcast to life me up and give me wings, as I glide through the ghettos and underfunded highways to my crib after a hard days surfing the net and avoiding work!

  2. Great episode as usual guys! I think the idea of this Final Four match was that these were the last four guys in the Royal Rumble. But, in doing some quick Wikipedia research, it looks like Diesel was in the final four, and Vader would have been number 5. So I’m not sure why Vader got in and Diesel was out. After some more research, I have found out that Diesel was actually Jim Ross’ fake Diesel, so that makes much more sense why he was not in this match. Vader’s bloody face on the cover of RAW magazine was one of the memories I’ll always remember. I was 14, and yes, the combination of blood and bikini clad divas was right up my alley. I remember the picture of Vader mugging for the camera pushing his split open head towards the camera.

    This was also the beginning of the end for Bret with WWF. Obviously, Survivor Series was the true end, but I remember a very special episode of Monday Night Raw. It may have been one of those that was aired on a different night due to a dog show or something, but it featured Bret Hart vs Sid in a cage. This was the infamous “This is bullshit” Bret promo, and perhaps the first time someone sweared on cable television. Again, right up my 14 year old self’s alley.

    Thanks for bringing back the great memories! And also for not reviewing the rest of the card! Marc Mero vs Leif Cassidy, Faarooq/Crush/Savio vs Bart Gunn/Goldust/Flash Funk, Rocky Maivia vs HHH (probably a decent match), and Furnas/LaFon vs Bulldog/Owen (10 minute tag title match ending in a DQ). In Your Houses were basically one match cards, and I think this proves it.

  3. Frankie S. says:

    Jerry Lynn Intro is Terrible! Goldust Forever!!!!

  4. Did Jerry Lynn refer to this as the “Old School Wrestling Broadcast”? That is old school.

    Great work, as usual!

  5. It’s funny that Black Cat confused Raymond Rougeau with Jacques Rougeau because I just heard an interview with Kevin Steen, who was trained in part by Jacques Rougeau. He said the Fabulous Rougeaus don’t speak to each other because Jacques is such a sleaze bag.

    Did Steve Austin land with only one foot on the floor at the 1997 Rumble before he hopped back in and eliminated Bret Hart? I thought he was straight up eliminated but jumped back in before a referee could notice that he was out. Either way, they’re genius ideas. Just two years before that, Shawn Michaels saved himself from elimination when only one of his feet touched the floor before he got back in and eliminated the British Bulldog. I think it was also the 1997 Rumble when Jerry Lawler landed on one foot and tried to jump on one foot back to the steps before someone hit him and he was out. And don’t get me started on how creative Jamie Noble and Kofi Kingston are when avoiding elimination from battle royals and Royal Rumbles, but I’ll have to wait until those events are 10 years old.

    I LOVE TICKET TO RIDE. What a great game. Black Cat, I recommend Galaxy Trucker if you haven’t played that one. That one, too, has very convoluted rules.

    Was there an explanation on why the Undertaker was deemed the number one contender heading into Wrestlemania 13?

    I am very interested to know what’s the story behind the final bit where the wolfman calls and leaves a message for Robert.

  6. I have to agree with Jerry Lynn, don’t go messin’ with the Minnesotan accents, brother~! 🙂

  7. Rusty Brooks Biggest Fan says:

    Great podcast guys.

    We saw the Road Warriors at a WCW house show around 1996 or so. They had gone back to WCW for a short period before returning to the WWF. After the show we saw Hawk and Animal out in the parking lot getting into their car.

    This guy we knew from college yells, “hey Hawk…. HEY HAWK!”. Hawk was just getting in the car, but as my friend yelled his name, he got back out of the car and snarls, “WHAT!?”. My friend goes, “I heard wrestling was fake..”. Hawk then snarls back, “WHY DONT YOU COME OVER HERE AND FOUND OUT HOW FAKE IT IS M****** F*****”. I am paraphrasing here, but I am 99% sure this is what Hawk said to him. My friend stepped back slowly.

  8. Drappstar says:

    Comic long boxes, reminiscing about RAW in the 90s, Ticket to Ride, Howard Finkel, concerns about cleanliness at the Best Western. You guys are tugging at my heartstrings. Awesome that Dre’s impression of Gordon Ramsey sounded like an Angry Bill Dundee about to do his 67th heel turn in USWA. And Vader’s masks were always completely weird but over with my younger self. I especially loved the metal minotaur-looking one that would spout steam magically after he would do that weird pandering chop salute to the crowd. I like to imagine Leon White loading up the mask with dry ice or whatever necessary ingredient (“Gotta hurry, it’s almost Vader time!”), smiling eagerly before pressing his eye socket nervously (“Gosh I hope it stays in.”) and heading out to the crowds. Looking back on it, how did we root so easily for anyone who had iron-on looking letters reading “It’s [my wrestler name] time!” on his singlet?

  9. What a great way to celebrate Wrestlemania season!

    It’s tough to reconcile the sometimes dubious undercards, but it feels like 1997 has everything I’m not getting now. The colourful characters and interesting personalities go without saying, but it’s the sense of causality that’s key. What a fantastic run! To chain from Royal Rumble and Final 4 all the way into ’98 and beyond. You could review those PPVs like chapters in a epic saga. Too many classic moments to list. Stuff mattered! Terrific! Looking forward to your follow-up!

    I did some research and to answer your question, I believe the first ever Fatal 4-Way was in June of 2010. You’re welcome. Even if I’m not sure I like what you’re implying about Kevin “Mr. Charisma” Kelly.

    Keep up the great work, guys. Would love to hear more Vader matches!

  10. Nostalgia Queen says:

    The reason behind the Final Four match was this: Stone Cold Steve Austin was eliminated by Bret Hart but the referees, who were busy with the brawling Mankind and Terry Funk, didn’t see the elimination. Austin goes back into the ring and illegally eliminates both Vader and Undertaker then illegally eliminates Hart winning the Royal Rumble match. I do believe WWF president Gorilla Monsoon reviews the tape and then sets up the match with Austin and the 3 men he illegally eliminated at the Rumble for the #1 contender match at Wrestlemania 13. When Shawn Michaels forfeited the WWF title it was decided that the winner of the match would be crowned WWF champion.

  11. Dear OSWP Family:

    If you guys haven’t watched WWF WrestleMania 13 between episode 91 and 92, here’s my review of it, so in a sense, I watched it for you!


  12. Tough as Nails says:

    Ahhhhh! Another new podcast just came out. Two steps forward, one step back on my quest to get current with Old School. This podcast was solid as always…I really am surprised at how little Vader there has been over the episodes. I don’t ever really remember being blown away by the guy, but I was always impressed with his ability to lose so often yet still seem indestructible.