No-where was the hand-wringing 'are they too muscular?' griping of today's IFBBB – just 12 superb athletes, female bodybuilders at their muscular peak.
Lenda Murray had just won six in a row after taking the crown from female muscle legend Cory Everson.
But her dominance of the sport was about to be ended by relative newcomer Kim Chizevsky.
Kim was incredible in every department with massive thick quads, doorway wide delts, shirt-ripping biceps and insane conditioning.
While Lenda still had the edge on graceful lines and balance Kim had the sheer quality muscle mass and the world had a new female bodybuilding champion of real class.
In third place was the ever popular ex-gymnast turned muscle athlete Natalia Murnikoviene. The Lithuanian may have been shorter than Kim and Lenda but her rear lat spread was the most shockingly muscular on stage.
Elsewhere in the field was a gorgeous Laura Creavalle looking almost athletically lithe next to the mass monsters, an insanely huge and ripped Vickie Gates and a couple of top quality English girls Andrulla Blanchette and Joanne Lee.
Full results of the 1996 Ms Olympia female bodybuilding contest
1st Kim Chizevsky USA
2nd Lenda Murray USA
3rd Natalia Murnikoviene Lithuania
4th Laura Creavalle Canada
5th Vickie Gates USA
6th Nancy Lewis USA
7th Eva Sukupova Czech Republic
8th Andrulla Blanchette England
9th Melissa Coates Canada
10th Sue Meyers USA
11th Joanne Lee England
12th Beatrix Gluck Germany