Written By: Matt Peddycord
WWF Saturday Night’s Main Event #17
October 29, 1988
(taped on 10/25/1988)
The current WWF Champs were as follows:
World Champion: Randy Savage (3/27/1988)
Intercontinental Champion: Ultimate Warrior (8/29/1988)
World Tag Team Champions: Demolition (3/27/1988)
Women’s Champion: Rockin’ Robin (10/7/1988) (yet to be aired)
Tonight, Jake Roberts tells us Rick Rude will know everything there is to know about pain about knowing about pain. Well, something like that. Also, Rick Rude has Cheryl’s face stenciled on his pants. Oh that is hot. Later on, Bossman changes the words to the Miranda Rights. Can he do that and still arrest people? And later, The Hart Foundation get another shot at the tag team titles. With Jimmy Hart no longer in their corner, can they win the belts back on their own? HAKU! (excuse me) squares off with the Hulkster, but apparently a valet in Hogan’s corner who does absolutely nothing at all will make a difference! It’s time for Saturday Night’s Main Event!
Your hosts are Vince McMahon & Jesse “The Third Blues Brother” Ventura.
Jake Roberts (w/Cheryl Roberts & Damien the SNAKE~!) vs. Rick Rude (w/Bobby Heenan)
Rude got his tights ripped off by Jake the last time he had Cheryl stenciled on his tights. Now he’s wearing those same tights again! Will he ever learn? Weird start. Roberts looks for a brawl and then grabs a wristlock. Rude breaks free and avoids a DDT by hitting the floor. Back in, Rude goes to the eyes and takes over with punches and turnbuckle smashes. He lays in some forearms on the back and gyrates over at Cheryl. Rude starts to pay too much attention to her and turns around into a clothesline. Jake unloads and Cheryl gets in a slap. Heenan objects to the ref, so Cheryl gets sent to the back. Probably to slip into something more comfortable for Rude after the match. That sets up our first commercial break. After the break, Rude and Roberts are on the floor. Roberts gets shoved off into the ringpost. Back in the ring, Roberts comes back and calls for the DDT, but Rude backdrops out. Rude hits the Flying Fist Drop for 1-2-NO! Rude ducks a right hand and then gets nailed with a DDT out of nowhere! Heenan climbs up on the turnbuckle and waves for somebody to run down. With Rude KO’ed, Roberts starts to yank off the degrading tights. Heenan runs over and stomps away on Roberts for the DQ. (7:31) Here comes Andre. He saves Bobby from certain doom. Jake goes after Andre with Damien. Andre is scared stiff. He can’t move! Jake throws the snake on Andre – causing the Giant to faint as Damien crawls all over Andre! To actually see Andre scared of something is really something. Basically an angle transition match. **½
WWF Tag Team Champions Demolition (w/Mr. Fuji & Jimmy Hart) vs. The Hart Foundation
Just a rematch from SummerSlam. Anvil makes the mistake of beating Ax to the other side of the ring into Demolition territory to get double-teamed. Neidhart counters a suplex on Smash and the Harts take over. Bret comes in and hits a flying elbow for two. Smash surprises Bret with a clothesline and throws him into the corner for the chest-first bump before tagging out to Ax. Anvil gets drawn in for some double-team stomps and chokes. Bret receives the double-team sledges from Demolition. Bret comes back with a clothesline and tags Neidhart. He gets rid of Ax and hits the STANDING POWERSLAM on Smash for 1-2-NO! Ax makes the save. It breaks down and the Demos gets tossed into each other. Meanwhile, Jimmy Hart’s Rougeau Brothers come down to ringside. Bret and Neidhart apparently hold off Ax, Fuji, Jimmy and Raymond, but they forget about Jacques who tosses the megaphone to Smash. Neidhart gets WHACKED and the champs retain. (5:56) Another angle transition match. *½
Hulk Hogan (w/Elizabeth) vs. King Haku (w/Bobby Heenan)
They show a clip of Harley Race missing the diving headbutt on Hogan and landing on the table – injuring the King in the process. Now we have King Haku! Liz says that she and Hulk have a *date* with royalty. Oh, I hope Randy Savage isn’t watching! He’s going to be SO pissed! Haku starts out strong on the Hulkster, but misses one punch on the mat and Hulk is back up and running with his usual offense. Heenan grabs an ankle as Hogan comes off the ropes to allow Haku to take control with a judo chop to the back of Hulk’s head. Haku applies a nerve hold and THRUST KICKS Hogan out to the floor. He tries to come off the apron onto Hogan, but Heenan gets pulled in the way. While Haku tries to help his manager, Hogan puts on the crown and poses in the ring. Ventura ~ “All he did was pull a manager in front of him and now he can claim the crown?!” Bobby gets taken to the back as we go to commercial. AND WE’RE BACK! Hogan pounds away, but Haku catches him with a clothesline. Haku hits a suplex, and it’s HULK UP TIME! Three punches, Big Boot, LEG DROP! You know the drill. (6:22) Together, Hogan and Liz cup their ears so they can hear the crowd yell and scream better. She has this really awkward look on her face. Poor Randy. *
Ken Patera vs. Dino Bravo (w/Frenchy Martin)
Geez, how many times did we have to sit through this match in 1988? Well I didn’t have to sit through all of them, because I was only two years old. Patera wins a shoulderblock battle and Bravo hits the floor. Back in, he unloads on Patera. Patera reverses a corner whip and delivers a ten-count corner punch. He goes for the FULL NELSON, but Bravo runs off to the corner to prevent that from happening. Bravo hits the inverted atomic drop and the SIDE SUPLEX gets the win. (3:02) Should have done Bravo/Duggan here since that’s where the real feud was at, but I guess they wanted to hold off on it. ½*
Big Bossman (w/Slick) vs. Jim Powers
This is Bossman’s SNME debut. He had only been around since June and was already gearing up for a Hogan feud. Hey, why not. He’s big – it says so right in his name. Plus, their cage matches were pretty good. Powers was still part of his jobber tag team known as the Young Stallions with partner Paul Roma. Bossman beats the crap out of Powers. His mini-comeback is cut off with a BOSSMAN SLAM. And that will do it for Powers. (2:48) Just a squash to introduce Bossman to the SNME crowd. ¼*
We close with the Hulkster vowing revenge on the Big Bossman for beating him down with a nightstick a week earlier on Superstars. Oh yeah, and Andre also tells Jesse to NEVER mention snakes around him ever again.
Final Thoughts: For the most part, a really subpar show. Roberts/Rude is the only thing worth seeing. Everything else sucks. Pretty much everything did in the WWF at the time due to overkill of every possible combination of the talent from the last three years. Thumbs down for SNME #17.