Re: When to start watching from in 1997?
My advice is to start watching from mid 96 when Russo was promoted to the WWE creative team.
WWE already became edgier mid 96 with Austin 3:16, the buried alive match and promos, the "Shitman" promo and Brian Pillman with a gun segment. 1997 was a great year but some 97 storylines started back in 96 like Nation of Domination, Bret-Austin rivalry, Taker feuding with Paul Bearer etc.
Try to find everything from the Russo Era (mid 96 to September 99).
Of course every wrestling fan should have the shows from 2000 but there was something in the air during the Russo era 96-99 you can't explain, you need to watch it.
Also, ask for a LiveWire show from October 1996 with McMahon, Cornette and Russo in the same room (that is impossible today) also with Sunny & Michael Hayes and Paul Heyman calling and bashing McMahon and WWE. Pure gold and more entertaining than most current storylines.