Written by: Erick Von Erich from Da Wrestling Site
Hello again, it’s Gorilla Monsoon…and your host, Bobby “the Brain” Heenan! Both are seated behind a desk full of all sorts of crap– including the new WWF Stretchy Dolls, plus the video and LP of “Piledriver: The Wrestling Album II”! Tonight we are exactly one week away from the inaugural Survivor Series. It will be a happening! The Brain is especially pumped for the event. But with so much going on in the World Wrestling Federation, let’s get down to ringside for…
Match 1: S.D. “Special Delivery” Jones vs. Boris Zuhkov
Before they threw to the match, Gorilla mentioned that Boris was a “youngster and newcomer”. This match is from the Sam Houston Coliseum featuring Bruce Pritchard, Duke Doherty and Mike McGuirk on the call. No Slickster for Zuhkov. Note the spelling of Boris’s last name, as the WWF would flop between “Zuhkov”, “Zhukov” and “Nelson” for the next year or so. Match begins as SD armdrags, while the commentators marvel over the size of Boris’s cranium. Boris kicks and pounds, but SD is right back with a hiptoss and a slam. More punchy/kicky from Boris until a chinlock happens. SD backdrops him as they segue into a brawl. SD mistakenly hits the ring post, so Boris quickly follows up by bouncing off the ropes with a flying headbutt/splash to get the pin.
Back in the studio, Gorilla mentions that he’ll be presenting the Brain with a gift, later on. Brain objects, citing all the previous gag gifts that Gorilla has given him over the years. Gorilla, remembering some of these, starts cracking up and loses it.
Match 2: The Young Stallions (Jim Powers & Paul Roma) vs. Gino Carabello & Tom Barnett
Looks like an extra match from a “Superstar” taping, with the commentary team of Bruce Pritchard, Mike McGuirk and….Nick Bockwinkel! One of the early squashes for the Stallions, as they’ve made the transition from jobbers into “superstars” with their own theme music and team name. Roma & Gino begins by trading armbars. Gino is whipped to ropes, as Roma lepfrogs then hip-tosses him twice. Tag to Powers who works the arm, then flies with a high cross-body press off the ropes for a 2 count. Double-team manuever as Powers whips Gino, then takes him down with a drop toe-hold so Roma can connect with an elbowdrop. Powers goes right back to working the arm with a hammerlock, making Bockwinkel happy. They work on Gino some more with a Roma slam and a double-team clothesline. Powers gets 2 after a legdrop, but Gino goes to the EYES and tags in Barnett. He pounds on Powers and whips him in for a reverse elbow. They doubleteam on Powers and choke him on the ropes. Powers blocks a suplex attempt and successfully reverses it. Hot tag to Roma, who comes in for a drop-kick and a flying clothesline on Gino. The Stallions then set him up for their finisher: Roma whips him to the ropes, then drops down so Powers can catch him with a powerslam and score the 3 count.
More studio fun, and Gorilla is reading the latest edition of WWF Magazine, with “Macho Man” Randy Savage on the cover. Heenan is quite thriled that Elizabeth was recently shoved by the Honky Tonk Man.
From the pages of the World Wrestling Federation Magazine…here’s UPDATE with Craig DeGeorge! New tag team champions were crowned recently, as Strike Force was victorious against the Hart Foundation. But all the talk has been of how the titles were won– with Martel’s Boston Crab submission manuever. Next, we’re shown some footage of new champs Tito Santana and Rick Martel celebrating in the locker room with the Junkyard Dog, Bam Bam Bigelow and Sam Houston.
Back in the studio, the Brain is on the phone with Miss Betty, trying to coordinate something once again. But we’re quickly thrown to…
A Very Special Podium Interview with Andre the Giant’s Survivor Series Team
Craig DeGeorge is joined by the entire team: Andre, Butch Reed, The One Man Gang, King Kong Bundy and Rick Rude. Plus, their managers: Bobby Heenan and Slick. They both pump up their team, until the Brain pulls out a Hulk Hogan stretchy doll. They pull the doll in separate directions, until Andre reaches over and grabs its head.
Match 3: “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan vs. “Ace/Cowboy” Bob Orton
From Maple Leaf Gardens, with Gorilla Monsoon and Nick Bockwinkel on the call. This is one of Orton’s final WWF television appearances. Hacksaw will not shut up with his endless “hoooooo” bellows. One lock-up, hoooooo! Walk around, hoooooo! Orton gets in a kneelift and whips him to the corner. Hacksaw reverses and Orton hits the turnbuckle. Hoooooo! They brawl for a bit until Hacksaw ducks and delivers an atomic drop. Orton does a leg takedown, then tosses Hacksaw out in front of Gorilla & Bock. Orton hops out and jabs Hacksaw with the ring microphone. Orton crawls back in and mocks Hacksaw by bellowing: “yeahhhhhhhh!” When Hacksaw returns, they brawl some more, with Hacksaw whipping Orton into the corner. Orton gets his knees up to stagger Hacksaw. Orton then shoves the ref across the ring. As the ref’s back is turned, Hacksaw picks up his 2 x 4 and brains Orton with it. Hacksaw tries to make it look legitimate by applying the shittiest small package this side of George Steele. That’s enough for Hacksaw to get the 3 count pin. Complete garbage, but give Orton credit for carrying the match and doing the job.
A Very Special Mean Gene Studio Interview
“Mean” Gene Okerlund is standing by with his guests: Hulk Hogan’s Survivor Series team.: “Superstar” Billy Graham, Bam Bam Bigelow and Paul Orndorf. Yet they’re minus the Hulkster himself…but that’s soon corrected as Hogan walks in, saying he was “camoflauged”. Oookay. They pump themsevles up, with Hogan mentioning Orndorf’s multiple babyface/heel turns. But Hogan recruited him because he knows all about the Heenan Family. Bam Bam and “The Prophet” Billy Graham each get a few words in. Ken Patera wasn’t on hand for the interview, but that wasn’t necessarily a bad thing.
Andre the Giant video set to the tune of Vince McMahon’s “Stand Back”
For no real reason, we’re shown clips of Andre in the ring. Most are from his babyface days, as he fought Big John Studd, King Kong Bundy and even a bleached blonde Ken Patera.
Match 4: “The Rock” Don Muraco vs. Sika
More from the Sam Houston Coliseum with Bruce, Mike & Duke. Mike is compliemntary of Muraco’s physique, so Duke fires back by saying: “all you broads are alike”. After two initial lock-ups, Sika thumps and headbutts. Muraco rolls out of the ring and Sika keeps preventing his return. Muraco makes it in, leaps on Sika with a Thesz Press and scores teh easy 3 count. Yup, that was it. Although, considering Sika was involved, such a short match wasn’t necessarily a bad thing, once again.
Back to the studio, where Gorilla has a gift box brought in for the Brain. Heenan doesn’t want it. When Gorilla asks him what could be in it, Heenan replies: “Little Beaver?!”
A Very Special Podium Interview with the Hart Foundation’s Survivor Series Team
Everyone is out! The Islanders, the Dream Team, the Bolsheviks, Demolition and the Hart Foundation. All the managers too, with the sole exception of “Luscious” Johnny V, the Dream Team’s manager who was being phased out at this time. Nothing substantial in the interview, as they just hype the Series.
Match 5: WWF Women’s Championship: Sensational Sherri vs. Debbie Combs
Joined-in-progress from Maple Leaf Gardens. Sherri goes for that old staple of women’s rasslin’: the Hair Pull. Debbie applies a snapmare, then a slam for 2. Debbie charges, but Sherri drops, pulls the top rope and sends her flying out to the floor. Gorilla speculates that all of Debbie’s blonde hair hindered her vision. Sherri brings her back in for a a drop-kick, front facelook and another Hair Pull. Debbie monkeyflips her over and scores a quick 2. A skullcracker and a dropkick each score 2 counts for Combs. She follows it up with a slam for another 2. Sherri gets a vertical suplex for her own 2. Debbie hoists her up for an airplane spin… but after spinning she tries to roll Sherri to the mat. Sherri holds on, reverses and rolls on top of Debbie to get the 3 count pin. Women’s wrestling was pretty awful in this time period, but Combs put on a good showing, here.
A Very Special Mean Gene Studio Interview
This time he has the Honky Tonk Man’s team, including “Dangerous” Danny Davis, “Outlaw” Ron Bass and the Greates Intercontinental Champion of All-Time himself. Again, it’s just hype for the event, with Bass trying almost too hard to put himself over. No Herules or Harley Race, though.
Match 6: “Superstar” Billy Graham vs. “The Natural” Butch Reed (w/Slick)
From “Superstars of Wrestling” with Vince McMahon, Jesse Ventura and Bruno Sammartion yakking. Reed attacks instantly and begins stomping all over Graham, or “hammering away” as McMahon puts it. He begins working Graham’s surgically repaired left hip, even working in a chairshot behind the ref’s back. Reed tries something off the top rope, but Graham blasts him and sends him to the floor. He pulls Slick in and applies a bearhug. The Manager-in-Peril Alarm goes off, bringing the One Man Gang into the ring. That triggers the DQ, as the Gang pounds away on Graham. The heels gang up on Graham, holding him down so the Gang can deliver three consecutive splashes. Don “The Rock” Muraco runs to the ring to chase off the heels. Graham does a stretcher job, as this was the end of his in-ring comeback.
To the studio, where the Brain begins whistling “Happy Trails”.
Match 7: British Bulldogs (w/Matilda) vs. the Hart Foundation (w/Jimmy Hart)
(Davey Boy Smith & Dynamite Kid vs. Bret “Hitman” Hart & Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart”)
More Sam Houston stuff, but with the Brain filling in for Duke Doherty. Matilda is annouced as the Bulldogs’ manager. Before you roll your eyes, remember “Headbutt, Dynamite!” As they enter, Matilda goes right after Jimmy Hart, even grabbing his megaphone and chewing on it! Dynamite Kid is quick to start with a shoulderblock and headlock takedown on Bret Hart. Davey comes in to trade armwringer and some criss-cross rope action (jump-jump!) Davey hooks a crucifix pin attempt for 2. Anvil comes in and walks into a drop toehold. Bret is whipped to the corner where he does his trademark THUNK spot. Hart soon fakes an “eye injury”, allowing Avnil to sneak in and get a few shots on Dynamite. Prichard complains about this as “outside interference”, but Heenan vehemently corrects him, citing that it’s not “outside interference” at all, since both guys are legally in the match. Truth! Dynamite manages a flying clothesline on Bret and makes the hot tag to Davey Boy. Dropkicks from Davey clean the ring, then he whips Anvil for a clothesline and a 2 count. All four are briefly in, as Davey hooks a sleeper on Anvil. In the confusion, Bret flies off the turnbuckles and nails Davey in the back of the head. After the ref ushers Dynamite out of the ring, he runs over to see Anvil covering Davey and counts the 3 count pin. Not the best match between these two teams and the ending was a frequently used finish for the Harts. Pirtchard again complains about it being “outside interference”. Sheesh. Heenan states: “two wrongs don’t won’t make a right, but two wrongs make a tag team match!”
As they wrap things up in the studio, Gorilla talks about keeping the mysterious gift for himself…as a reminder of the Brain’s stay on Prime Time. As soon as Heenan hears that, he asks: “what have you heard?!” and panics about possibly being replaced, again. Gorilla opens it to reveal a frozen turkey, which is “symbolic of the Brain”. Ehh, not a great gag at all, but it tied into the whole Thanksgiving motif.
Why’d You Tape This? Just a buncha’ Survivor Series hype, here. It’s always fun to watch these shows to get the pulse of the WWF at any particular timeframe. It’s a little funny how they seemed to be featuring the Sam Houston Coliseum shows, as those wouldn’t air on PTW, much, into 1988 and beyond. Also humorous how the studio desk begins to get cluttered. That soon became a staple of PTW as every week they seemed to add more and more crappy merchandise to the set. Overall, this show is rather so-so, but it would be a good primer before watching the Survivor Series.
34-year-old currently living in Syracuse, New York. Long-time fan of the New York Mets, Chicago Bulls, and Minnesota Vikings. An avid fan of professional wrestling and write reviews/articles on the product. Usually focusing on old-school wrestling.