August 26, 2006
Scott Criscuolo & Justin Rozzero
November 27, 1991
Joe Louis Arena
Buy Rate: 2.2
Announcers: Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan
Tatanka (Chris Chavis) defeated Kato (Paul Diamond) in 7:41
1) Ted DiBiase, the Mountie (Jacques Rougeau), the Warlord (Terry Szopinski), and Ric Flair (Richard Fliehr) defeat Bret Hart, Virgil (Mike Jones), British Bulldog (David Smith), and Roddy Piper (Roderick Toombs)
Ric Flair pins British Bulldog with a cheap shot to the head at 10:55
Roddy Piper pins Warlord with a double axe handle at 16:59
Ted DiBiase, Mountie, Bret Hart, Virgil & Roddy Piper are disqualified at 22:47
Fun Fact: Well, as you can see above, the moment has finally arrived. Ric Flair makes his WWF PPV debut in the opening match. Flair began his career in the AWA, training under Verne Gagne. After a brief stint in Georgia, he arrived in Jim Crockett Promotions (Mid-Atlantic) in 1975. Feuding with the likes of Bobo Brazil, Greg Valentine, and Jimmy Snuka, Flair captured numerous tag titles as well as the US Heavyweight Title. He also survived a terrible plane crash that killed 2 men and broke Flair’s back. After being told his career was over, he returned just 10 months later, and had a cup of coffee with Vince Sr’s WWWF in 1976 (his first match is on the Ric Flair DVD set, a must purchase for any wrestling fan.) Then on September 17, 1981 Flair defeated Dusty Rhodes to win his first NWA World Heavyweight Championship. From there he cemented his legacy with numerous World Title reigns and many legendary feuds and matches. His promos are second to none, with one-of-a-kind catch phrases like “To be the man, you gotta beat the man”, “Ric Flair is a 60-minute man”, and “What’s causin’ all this?” From 1984-1989, it was calculated that Ric Flair averaged 37 minutes a match. During a feud with Barry Windham in 1987, the two men wrestled 90-minute draws on house shows. Unheard of in today’s wrestling world. Of course his legacy as an awesome heel was solidified when he collaborated with Arn Anderson, Ole Anderson and Tully Blanchard to form the greatest heel faction in professional wrestling history: the Four Horsemen, managed by J.J. Dillon. Their trail of championships, promos, and heel beat downs knows no equal. Then there’s the “trilogy”, which is the three awesome TV matches he had with Ricky Steamboat in 1989, all 5-stars and all workrate clinics. By 1991, Flair was butting heads with WCW boss Jim Herd about Flair’s future. Herd wanted him to cut his hair, don an earring, and be called Spartacus. Flair laughed and left for the WWF. He also took the World Heavyweight Championship belt with him, since he hadn’t received his deposit for the belt back from WCW. When Herd balked at paying the deposit, Flair told Vince he had the WCW World Title and Vince told him to bring it with him. Eventually WCW sued and got the belt back, but since Flair had already been seen on WWF TV with it, Vince had him carry around one of the Tag Team belts and covered by having Jack Tunney claim he was distorting it on TV since it wasn’t a recognized title. He made his TV debut on the 9/9 edition of Prime Time Wrestling, which includes a hysterical Bobby Heenan making fun of all the backstage workers as he prepares for Flair’s arrival.
Fun Fact II: On the 9/28 episode of Superstars, Ric Flair was on his way to the ring for a jobber squash match. As he’s walking he sees announcers Vince McMahon, Randy Savage, and Roddy Piper at the table. Piper and Flair (real life best friends) had been sniping at each other since Flair arrived. Well, rather than go to the ring, he goes to the broadcast table and baits Piper into a fight. While Flair jaws with McMahon, Piper turns his attention and Flair cracks him in the head with the title belt. Chaos ensues, and eventually Vince McMahon takes an accidental wooden chair shot from Piper. It was the first time McMahon was involved in an on-air dispute. This immediately made Flair the top heel in the WWF in one fell swoop, as the angle was red hot.
Fun Fact III: On the Sunday before this show at the Survivor Series Showdown, Ted DiBiase defeated Virgil to regain his Million Dollar Championship. As the match closed in on 10 minutes, the new heel in town, Repo Man (formerly Smash of Demolition) came to ring side and smashed Virgil in the face with the belt, helping DiBiase gain the last laugh on his former bodyguard.
Scott: Well, the moment has finally arrived. The greatest wrestler of the past 30 years makes his return to the WWF. This, of course, is very different. This opener is dripping with excitement and psychology. Everyone wants a piece of the “Nature Boy”. From Piper, to Bret, to even Bulldog all the hot babyfaces wanted a shot at Flair. Looking back, was there ever a sweeter team of awesome heels on one side than Flair, DiBiase, Mountie and the always massive Warlord in Survivor Series history? I think not. That babyface team wasn’t bad either. The action is hot and heavy, and of course the Gorilla/Bobby announce team makes for an even better dynamic. The end is kind of cheesy, as there’s a brawl in the ring and the referee disqualifies everybody except Flair, because he was tossed outside and wasn’t involved in the brawl. A cheap way for Flair not to lose, but it served its purpose. He’s still Flair and he’s still fucking awesome. What a different and fresh dynamic for the WWF, as no one had arrived from another promotion with this much hoopla and pageantry. As for Flair, his night isn’t over yet. Grade: 2.5
Justin: Well, here it is…Ric Flair’s long awaited WWF Pay-Per View debut. The crowd is red hot, especially when Flair and Piper finally tangle half way through the match. There is really a great array of workers in here, so each match-up produces solid results, and add that to a pair of heated, long running feuds in DiBiase/Virgil and Bulldog/Warlord and you have a pretty damn good opener. After having the biggest year of his career, Virgil will now close 1991 out in a slump and would never reach the heights he saw over the past 10 months again. British Bulldog has also had a solid 1991, picking up 2 PPV wins before bowing out in this match, but he too would experience a down turn in fortune as 1992 rolls around, but luckily for him the second half of his year would end up being pretty good. Over the few months leading to this show, Bret Hart had really carved out a nice niche for himself as the mighty fighting champion of the I-C division, taking on any and all challengers and starting out his singles career on a high note. Rounding out the team is a man who spent all year in the commentary booth: Roddy Piper. After staying out of in ring action (in any major way) for over a year, Piper is goaded back into action by Ric Flair in a continuation of their wars from Mid Atlantic in the early 80s. Piper would have a solid run coming before heading off into another retirement. First up on the heel team, we have Ted DiBiase, who has had an up and down 1991, but as the year is coming to a close, he seems poised to reestablish himself as a player, which he would do in the New Year, but just in a different way than expected. The Warlord also had a solid 1991 and was perfectly suited for his role as heel monster. His solid in ring work and look even earned him a few Title matches with Hulk Hogan at house shows throughout the year. The third member of the team is the Mountie who had been in a bit of tailspin since spending the night in the hoosegow, courtesy of the Big Boss Man. Things would look for the Mountie in 1992, but that would be short lived. Finally, we get to the Nature Boy who became a powder keg the second he walked in the door. Most men work their way up the ladder, but when you are Ric Flair, you start at the top, and the top for him included two men: Roddy Piper and Hulk Hogan. He gets to lay a beating on Piper here, but would sound off in a massive way in just a few more paragraphs. All in all, this is a pretty fun match and quite the spectacle to see all the great talent surrounded by such a hot crowd. A better ending really could have made this match a classic, but it is understandable why they did what they did. Grade: 3
***Randy Savage comes out to do an interview with “Mean” Gene Okerlund on the heels of his reinstatement by WWF President Jack Tunney. Savage had wanted a piece of Jake Roberts after Roberts and Undertaker crashed the wedding reception at Summerslam with a cobra. On the 11/23 episode of Superstars, Roberts baited Savage (who couldn’t be involved in a confrontation while under “retirement”) into the ring after Roberts won a squash match. Savage chases him in, and Roberts eventually overpowers Savage and ties him in the ropes. He then takes out a cobra, which bears his fangs into Savage’s arm. The blood oozing out of his arm was great for television. This was heavy duty stuff at the time because the big question was whether that Cobra was de-venomized. Savage is unhooked, and is swinging wildly at Roberts, delirious. Piper leaves the broadcast table and Elizabeth comes out to help Savage who is disoriented from the bite. As they fight to get Savage on the stretcher, there is an absolutely awesome visual of Roberts sitting in the corner laughing in heel delight as the cobra is standing to attention in front of him. Savage put a 900 number up for fans to call and ask the WWF to reinstate him. Tunney indeed does that, and the Savage vs. Roberts match was set for the next PPV, This Tuesday in Texas. ***
ORDER THIS TUESDAY IN TEXAS…RIGHT NOW!
2) Texas Tornado (Kerry Adkisson), El Matador (Merced Solis), Jim Duggan & Sergeant Slaughter (Robert Remus) defeat Colonel Mustafa (Khosrow Vaziri), Hercules (Ray Fernandez), the Berzerker (John Nord) & Skinner (Steve Keirn)
Sgt. Slaughter, El Matador, Jim Duggan & the Texas Tornado
Sgt. Slaughter pins Col. Mustafa with a clothesline at 7:57
El Matador pins Hercules with a fist drop at 12:04
Sgt. Slaughter pins Skinner with a roll-up at 13:30
Jim Duggan pins Berzerker with the 3-point tackle at 14:17
Fun Fact I: A couple more debuts here, obviously not as notable as Ric Flair. First we have the Berzerker, who is portrayed by John Nord, who’s well known in the AWA as Nord the Barbarian. He originally came in with the name “The Viking.” That changed after a month or so. The other debut is Skinner, the tobacco-spitting redneck from the Everglades, which is quite a change from this person’s previous character. Steve Keirn used to be ½ of the former tag team The Fantastics with Stan Lane. Decked out in white tights, white suspenders and a bow tie, The Fantastics were a hot team in the AWA and UWF, but Keirn has traded in his playboy look for a torn plaid shirt, a pair of khakis and a spittoon.
Fun Fact II: Tito Santana was off TV for a few months, and came back dressed as a matador complete with green jacket and pink hat. He claimed he went back to his homeland to refocus himself and that if he could learn how to avoid and defeat bulls, then he could do the same in the ring. Not much more to say here. He returns at this PPV and takes the place of the recently departed Ricky Steamboat, who was originally scheduled to be in this match.
Fun Fact III: Slaughter decided that being against his American fans went on long enough, so on the 9/28 Superstars there was a vignette of Slaughter apologizing for his affiliation with Iraq. On the 10/12, 10/26, and 11/9 Superstars Slaughter was filmed at various national monuments (Lincoln Memorial, statue of Paul Revere, and Statue of Liberty) asking his fans for forgiveness with the memorable quote “I want my country back!!!!!!” Slaughter was a last minute addition to this team, as he replaces Jim Neidhart, who was injured in an attack by Ric Flair after a match between the two. Then, as he was being carried back, Neidhart was assaulted and injured further by the Beverly Brothers. Neidhart would do color commentary for a while before returning to ring in late December.
Fun Fact IV: Hercules was a last minute replacement in this match, as he is filling the spot left open by the recently departed Big Bully Busick. Busick is nothing more than a footnote in WWF history, but he did have a brief mini-feud with the Macho Man that started when he showed up in the audience of Prime Time Wrestling and was picking on kids in the audience. The only thing Busick really contributed to the WWF was his manager, who would stick around for quite a few more years: Harvey Wippleman. This is also Hercules’ final non Rumble PPV appearance. His final record is 5-14-1. He is 0-4 at the Royal Rumble, 1-4-1 at Wrestlemania, 2-2 at Summerslam and 2-4 at Survivor Series.
Fun Fact V: This is also the final PPV appearance of Colonel Mustafa, also known as the Iron Sheik, of course. He would show up for a cup of coffee in the 1992 Royal Rumble, but his final PPV record is 2-4: 0-1 at the Royal Rumble, 2-1 at Wrestlemania, 0-1 at Summerslam and 0-1 at Survivor Series.
Fun Fact VI: The hits keep on coming, as this is the Texas Tornado’s final PPV match as well. He will be in the…you guessed it…1992 Royal Rumble, but that would be about it for Mr. Von Erich. He would hang around for some of 1992, but wouldn’t see another PPV match. Sadly, about a year after he leaves the WWF, Von Erich would lose his long running and well publicized battle with his drug addiction and would end up shooting himself on the family ranch in February 1993, just adding another sad chapter to the cursed Von Erich legacy. His final PPV record is 5-2: 0-2 at the Royal Rumble, 1-0 at Wrestlemania, 2-0 at Summerslam and 2-0 at Survivor Series.
Scott: Not much of a match here, just a chance for Slaughter to redeem himself in front of the fans, and what better way to do that than team with Jim Duggan? Ugh. Some observations from this match: First, Texas Tornado continues his downward spiral. I mentioned in the Summerslam review how he was mumbling to himself when he was in the ring after introductions. It was even more prevalent when he came into the ring for this match. Who knows what he’s taking, but it seems ages ago he was the Intercontinental Champion. Second, who was a more popular cult figure among wrestling fans than the Berzerker? His Bruiser Brody-type “HUSSSS….HUSSSS” is pure comedy and brings so much to the horns and the sword he carries around. Third, I love Tito Santana and the workrate, effort and loyalty he brought to the WWF. Did he really need a character change? He became a glorified jobber, why didn’t he just stay the same normal character? I don’t get it. In any event, the face team runs the table and wins the match. Grade: 2
Justin: Man, for a match that means absolutely nothing there sure were a lot of replacements, character changes and debuts in this match. The heel lower mid-card is strengthened a bit with two new interesting characters in the Berzerker and Skinner. Skinner would actually put in a solid couple of years and have some good undercard matches. He is one of those underrated wrestlers who didn’t get the gimmick or push he deserved but always brought it and put on a solid match none-the-less. The Berzerker, on the other hand, was actually booked quite strong throughout his tenure. He was a big guy and decent enough in the ring and had a pretty entertaining gimmick. The other half of the heel team has seen better days. Hercules has been around for 5 years and has been a staple of our PPV reviews, but, outside of a brief appearance in the 1992 Rumble, this is the last we will see of the Mighty One. He has had many ups and downs, but was a true Vince Loyalist, as he always had a PPV slot and a decent push no matter what. Also making his final appearance, outside of the 1992 Rumble is Col. Mustafa, also known as the Iron Sheik, who was about four years past meaning anything at this point in his career. Over on the face side, we have the newly repackaged Tito Santana, who went back to his native Mexico to learn discipline as a bullfighter. He would stick around as El Matador for a couple of more years before finally riding into the sunset. Also on the team is a man whose stock has fallen severely over the past 12 months: the Texas Tornado. His star is fading fast, and he wouldn’t see another major feud or PPV match for the rest of his Federation tenure. Rounding out the team is a couple of faces with a new found friendship. After battling earlier in the year, Hacksaw Duggan has forgiven Slaughter and invited him back into the good ol’ USA. Slaughter’s face run would be brief and he would even serve as the special “referee enforcer” for a few months before he settled in to a backstage role. Well, that about sums up this match: a lot of change and fluctuation for such an easily forgettable match. Grade: 1.5
***Jake Roberts comes out to reply to Randy Savage’s interview and their upcoming match at This Tuesday in Texas. Roberts was on such a roll as a heel, it’s a shame this will be short-lived. If you haven’t bought the Jake Roberts DVD yet, please do so. The promos this man cut over the years and the moments he gave us are indescribable. When the cobra bit Savage, and Roberts was sitting in the corner grinning as the cobra stood to attention is a visual I will never forget. This could easily be a candidate for feud of the year for 1991. We will have more in our next review. ***
ORDER THIS TUESDAY IN TEXAS…RIGHT NOW!
3) The Undertaker (Mark Callaway) defeats Hulk Hogan (Terry Bollea) to win WWF World Title with a Tombstone on a steel chair at 12:43
Fun Fact: The big moment of this feud that led to this match was on the 11/16 Superstars, in the Funeral Parlor. Hulk Hogan came out to counter the claims of Ric Flair that he is the “Real WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION”. Flair comes out to jaw with Hogan face to face. As this is happening the casket standing up behind Hogan opens and Undertaker comes out to blindside Hogan and beat him down. Roddy Piper and Randy Savage come from the broadcast table with chairs to protect Hogan (although the still shot on obsessedwithwrestling.com looks like they’re attacking Hogan). Taker rips the cross off Hogan (ala Andre before Wrestlemania III) and drops it on him. Another awesome segment in what has become a red-hot second half of 1991.
Scott: WOW. This was a total shock to me, to my brother (who was cheering and throwing pretzels at me), and probably anyone else watching this match. Most people didn’t take Undertaker seriously at the time and thought this was just a stop on the road to Hogan vs. Flair at Wrestlemania. Well, that obviously didn’t happen, as the combination of backstage issues and the gaining popularity of Taker’s character led to this shocking title change. Of course this would not be without controversy, as Ric Flair would come out to slip a steel chair into the ring. The ref was being distracted by Paul Bearer, and Taker dropped Hogan onto the chair. Now, there was a lot going on backstage involving Hogan, Vince and the booking. Hogan was slated to retire in 1992, and supposedly they needed to get the belt off him so he could win his final match at Wrestlemania without having a title attached to him. The other reason that is still speculation is that Hogan was hesitant to get in the ring with Flair because Hogan would be exposed in a match against a man that is clearly the better wrestler. That of course is rumor, although some would think that’s fact. Regardless, it was clear Hogan’s cheers were dwindling and some of the crowd was clearly pleased that Undertaker won the match. Later on Jack Tunney would announce that Hogan would get his rematch at the special This Tuesday in Texas PPV. Grade: 2.5
Justin: Well, where do we start with this one? Hogan’s mighty Kingdom is finally beginning to crumble. After a solid 8 years on top of the mountain, Hulk’s fan base was shrinking rapidly. Sure, he would still garner a solid entrance pop, but after that the majority of cheers turned into LOUD boos. As further evidence, Undertaker (a despised heel at this point) is cheered when he pins Hogan to take the title. Flair’s interference here would logically lead to a big blow-off between the top two stars in wrestling history, but as we will see, Hogan seemingly avoided that at all costs. I really can not understand why Vince didn’t force these two into a huge PPV match. They came close at Wrestlemania VIII, but we will explain that fiasco when we get there. Anyway, this match is pretty shitty until the final minutes when Flair and Perfect interject, and finally give Hogan what he deserves: a steel chair under his bald head. Looking back on this, it is sad to think how they used ‘Taker as a pawn in the petty politics of Hogan, as his first title reign is pretty much a joke. Anyway, this is worth checking out just to see Hogan’s fantasy world go down the drain and it is fun to laugh as he struggles to save it all. Grade: 2
4) The Beverly Brothers & the Nasty Boys defeat the Rockers & the Bushwhackers
Jerry Sags (Jerry Sagonovich), Brian Knobbs (Brian Yandrisovitz) and Blake Beverly (Mike Enos)
Brian Knobbs pins Luke with a clothesline off the second turnbuckle at 5:21
Beau Beverly pins Butch with a double slam (Blake) at 10:14
Shawn Michaels pins Beau Beverly with a backslide at 13:53
Blake Beverly pins Shawn Michaels after Michaels was knocked down by Beau’s legs at 19:40
Jerry Sags pins Marty Jannetty with a Small Package at 23:04
Fun Fact: Another PPV debut, and that’s the Beverly Brothers, Beau and Blake. Their real names are Wayne Bloom and Mike Enos, who were a solid mid-card team in the AWA.
Fun Fact II: As we entered the final months of 1991, an air of tension was starting to form around the Rockers. They seemingly argued during every match, and especially after big losses. Every time, though, they put their differences aside and made up. The rough waters would continue here, as Shawn is accidentally kicked by Beau, who was being slammed by Marty and pinned, leading to a face to face confrontation while the match was still going on. The two would patch things up again, but it was clear that the rift was getting worse.
Scott: This match was simply to extend what was about to become one of the defining moments in wrestling history. Tension had apparently been building between the members of the Rockers, and they had tried to keep things together on TV. After winning a big match at Wrestlemania VII they are left off the Summerslam card, which was a head-scratcher. Here, they, along with the always-over Bushwhackers, take on the former tag champions and a new team, the Beverly Brothers. The Rockers are cruising along and are about to get rid of Blake Beverly. While Michaels is fighting in the corner, Jannetty was bodyslamming Beau to the canvas; Jannetty swung Beau’s legs into the back of Michaels’ head, knocking him to the canvas. Michaels is then pinned by Blake Beverly. Michaels is clearly pissed off and storms out of the ring yelling at his tag team partner. Jannetty then tries to battle the heels 3-on-1 but it’s futile as Sags finishes him off and the heels celebrate. The Rockers have been a solid babyface team for about 4 years but now it seems the wheels are falling off. This reaches a head at the turn of the New Year. Other than that this match means absolutely nothing. Grade: 2
Justin: Scott about summed it all up above. The match was basically a 23-minute showcase for the new heel force, the Beverly Brothers, and to help advance what would become a major storyline with the Rockers. The match is a little too long for what it needed to be, but I guess they had to fill the card out somehow. The Beverlys were a solid pick up and would help solidify the heel tag scene. Other than that there really isn’t much else to say here, besides there is one big moment story-wise and a big win for a new team. Grade: 2
ORDER THIS TUESDAY IN TEXAS…RIGHT NOW!
5) The Legion of Doom & Big Boss Man defeat IRS & the Natural Disasters
Hawk (Mike Hegstrand), Animal (Joe Laurinatis)
IRS pins Boss Man with a briefcase shot at 6:23
Hawk pins Typhoon when IRS accidentally hits Typhoon with a briefcase shot at 9:37
Earthquake is counted out when walks out in anger
Hawk pins IRS with a clothesline off the top rope at 15:21
Fun Fact: This match was originally scheduled to be Sid/Boss Man/LOD vs. Jake/IRS/Disasters, but it was changed to a six-man tag just days before. Sid and Jake were the captains, stemming from the Summerslam Wedding incident, where Sid saved the Savages from Jake and ‘Taker. However, just a few weeks before the match, Sid tore his biceps and had to be removed from the match. After they announced Sid being pulled, they kept teasing that the match would be a handicapped 4 on 3 situation (even as late as the Survivor Series Showdown, which aired 3 days before the show, as the heel team cut a promo on how they would kill the faces because it was 4 on 3.) However, speculation was running rampant that Randy Savage would be re-instated for the event to take Sid’s place, as this was shortly after Jake had his cobra attack Savage on Superstar. On the SS Showdown, McMahon was even pimping a 1-800 vote line on whether fans thought Savage should be re-instated or not. Just before the show, Jack Tunney announced the match would be three on three, and that Savage WOULD be re-instated the following week for This Tuesday in Texas (ORDER NOW!).
Scott: After a hot beginning to this show, it limps to a lifeless end with a heatless 6-man tag match. The LOD were tag champs, and still the darlings of the tag division. Boss Man is always over, so the face team was fine. IRS was still building heat as a credible heel, and the Disasters seemed to turn face in mid-match when Earthquake walks out on IRS after Irwin accidentally whacks Typhoon with his briefcase. They don’t actually turn face for a few more months. Hawk and Animal finish IRS off, and that’s that. This finishes a big year for the greatest tag team ever, as they hold the straps and gain a big following. 1992 would be very different. Not much more to say, as this show drags to a crawl after a really hot start. Grade: 1.5
Justin: Man, talk about a poorly organized show. The PPV started off red hot, but ever since Undertaker walked out as Champ, the crowd hasn’t been given much to get excited about. This match is decent enough, but the show could really have been saved if they pulled the trigger and put Savage in, but I guess I understand business-wise why they held off another week. The Boss Man is kind of floating aimlessly. He has a minor Superstars style feud going on with IRS, but other than that he pretty much spends the next half year bopping around to hot crowds but without a real feud. The Legion of Doom continues to roll along and dominate the tag division, much as they have for most of 1991. 1992 would be a lot shakier for the Road Warriors, but for now they are on top of the world. IRS is starting to carve out his niche, but still doesn’t have much heat on him, so the crowd can’t get into him here. The Natural Disasters are still a solid team, but were in need of a makeover of sorts, and they would get one in the next couple months. This match could have been a lot hotter with Sid and Jake Roberts in there, but it just wasn’t meant to be. That is all really…except…ORDER THIS TUESDAY IN TEXAS…RIGHT NOW! Grade: 1.5
Scott: This show as a whole was nothing more than an advertisement for the next PPV. There were some important moments, including the PPV debut of the great Ric Flair. He put on his typical great performance. It did look kind of silly that everyone in the match was DQ’d except for him, but it really didn’t matter. Obviously the shock of the night was Hogan’s title loss to Undertaker, as everyone thought this was just another title defense and we were on a collision course to Hogan/Flair. This was the beginning of Hogan’s kingdom showing signs of crumbling. It was evident the pops he had been getting for the last 6 years were slowly starting to fade. Other superstars were getting just as popular, and Hogan was not quite used to it affecting his popularity. He clearly did NOT want to face Ric Flair, or he really wanted to retire in 1992 and no later. Whatever the reason, what was a simple course to action to the biggest main event in Wrestlemania history was clearly thrown off course. Undertaker was WWF Champ 1 year after his debut, an unheard of proposition in professional wrestling, let alone Vince McMahon’s universe. But under the circumstances Taker was becoming popular and Hogan obviously didn’t care. We’ll see in the next review how much worse this mess gets. Two other issues coming from this: The red-hot feud between Randy Savage and Jake Roberts reaches a zenith in the next review, and the growing tension between Shawn Michaels and Marty Jannetty. 1991 started with the Ultimate Warrior as champion, now he’s MIA. The Undertaker was only a couple of months with the promotion, and right now he’s WWF Champ. What a difference 11 months makes. Usually this means the year is over, but we have one more show to do. An experiment that was years ahead of its time, but would be very important as the pertinent storylines of the moment unfold. As a whole this show was pretty good, but it’s balanced with a hot start, and a very flat finish. Final Grade: B-
Justin: Well, this show does not stand the test of time at all. Flair’s debut and the opening match steal the show, and Hogan jobbing was a major story, but the rest of the show is really sub-par and sputters to a heatless end. The weird thing is, they seemed like they cared less about this pay-per view, as they pimped Tuesday in Texas ALL NIGHT. They kept building to that, and acted like this show meant nothing, because that show would be the huge pay-off to all these feuds. In a way, it was almost like a huge episode of Superstars, or even a This Tuesday in Texas Countdown Show. Again, I understand the business end of pimping your next PPV, but it really wasn’t fair to those who ordered this show (although they did witness a huge debut and a rare title change, so maybe they don’t have too much to bitch about). Anyway, you could tell the Survivor style matches were starting to get a bit played out, and Vince put them on hold for a year in 1992. The whole pay per view has a weird, dark feeling to it (probably because it centered on the Undertaker) that would pretty much characterize the end of 1991, as the whole Federation was thrown into a state of flux and confusion for the next few months. Anyway, an average Survivor Series, saved only by Ric Flair’s debut and Hogan getting screwed over in the middle of the ring. Final Grade: C
Runner Up: Ric Flair (big impact)
Non-MVP: Hulk Hogan
Runner Up: Sid/Randy Savage/Jake Roberts (all left out of show)