Viceland’s ‘Dark Side of the Ring’ Wrestles With WWF’s Greatest Controversy: ‘The Montreal Screwjob’

The new documentary series about professional wrestling produced by Viceland has been terrific. Dark Side of the Ring has aired two episodes so far, and they were great. Although I enjoyed their first episode about “Macho Man” Randy Savage and Miss Elizabeth, there wasn’t a whole lot to review. I know the story. It has been told before. Both of them died years ago. Still, it was good to take a trip down memory lane. I heard from someone who is too young to have seen the matches from 30 years ago, and he praised the episode.

My main complaint would be the incorrect information that was posted for some of the events. I don’t understand why they repeatedly get things wrong when you can look up dates and locations so easily. Even their second episode had an obvious mistake about where and when a match took place. However, episode two was very well done.

For years I have suspected that Bret Hart was in on what took place back in 1997. The Montreal Screwjob is without a doubt the most famous event in wrestling history. Questions were not answered in this episode. Actually, I am even more confused. It didn’t end there, either. After the episode, referee Earl Hebner said that he believes Bret Hart knew what would happen. My research has had me going in circles. Writer Dave Meltzer has stated that Bruce Prichard (who was described as Vince McMahon’s right-hand man) did not know about the finish.

However, he has also claimed that Prichard knew on another occasion. Former wrestlers have given their opinions that it was a work. George ‘The Animal” Steele had said that this was his belief in a video, and Scott Hall also thought that the incident was planned. Hall pointed out how the camera zooms in on Vince after Hart spat on him. However, I soon learned that the live broadcast had ended. In fairness, I had lost interest in the business years earlier and was not watching at that time.

One of the most intriguing parts of this episode was the commentary by Jim Cornette. He was on the booking committee, and claimed to have come up with a finish where Bret Hart is screwed. Vince Russo became head writer for the WWF in 1997. During this episode, Russo declared that the finish was his idea. Recently, Russo tweeted that he would be willing to take a lie detector test and thinks that they should be required during interviews for the series. Cornette, who hates Russo, has promised to urinate on his grave. This has evolved into one of our country’s great mysteries. Even if it did take place in Canada. Just go with me here. I say the whole thing belongs to McMahon and his company, which has headquarters in Connecticut.

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There are so many different comments and perspectives. I can’t endorse this show enough. The uncertainty of whether or not Bret Hart was a part of this plan has fueled the fascination with what happened. That’s why I’ve thought that it could be a work. It seems like there has been an unimaginable amount of money to be made. DVDs and books have been sold. This documentary is covering the subject 22 years later, and the topic is still white hot.


Upcoming episodes look very interesting. The next one will focus on Bruiser Brody’s murder. Catch up, and come along for the ride moving forward. All three episodes can be seen Wednesday night, when the latest episode debuts.