The SmarK Retro Rant for WWF Survivor Series 1993
– Live from Boston, MA.
– Your hosts are Vince and for the last time on a WWF PPV, Bobby Heenan.
Adam Bomb, IRS, Diesel and Rick Martel v. Randy Savage, Marty Jannetty, 1-2-3 Kid and Razor Ramon.
Can you IMAGINE the drug bills on the babyface side? They’re gonna make some coke dealer VERY happy. So anyway, Mr. Perfect was supposed to be captaining the babyfaces, but he disappeared from the WWF, leaving us with Savage. Interesting how Vince still didn’t think enough of Savage to put him in the main event instead of the opener. Ramon starts with Martel to continue that heated rivalry and they trade wristlocks, but Martel elbows out. He gets a bodypress, but Razor rolls through for two and hits him with the blockbuster slam for two. Ramon gives him a series of atomic drops and Martel tags out to Adam Bomb. Bomb overpowers Ramon (nuclear power > cocaine + alchohol) and wants a test of strength to really hammer the point home. See, now Ramon’s character is all about machismo, so it makes sense that he’d be easy to sucker into that kind of thing. Ramon suplexes out of it, triggering a miscue between the heels and a total meltdown. Luckily IRS calms things down, and Bomb starts taking it out on the Kid instead. Great bumps from Kid as Bomb and Diesel tee off on him. He knew EXACTLY how to make them look like monsters. Diesel gets a gutwrench suplex (Crowd: OOOOOH!) and the big boot (Crowd: OOOOOH!), but Kid comes back with a flying headscissors, and Savage gets the hot tag. He runs wild and destroys everyone, gets rid of everyone but Diesel, and then finishes Big Kev with the big elbow at 10:18. Great stuff.
Martel tries attacking Macho and gets nowhere, so he lets IRS have a go. Savage gets a bodypress and a pair of clotheslines and brings in Razor, but Martel gets a cheapshot from the apron to take over. He drops elbows on the back and Bomb comes in for the double-team. IRS drops an elbow and gets a legdrop for two, and we hit the chinlock. Ramon fights out and brings Savage in, and he goes up to finish, but Crush distracts him and he’s pinned at 16:46. Glad they didn’t go with the wussy countout finish. In the Coliseum Video EXCLUSIVE version, Savage heads back, past the Gorilla Position, and searches for Crush. Riveting. Back to the ring, Adam Bomb beats on Marty and Martel goes to an abdominal stretch, but misses a blind charge. Back to Razor, and he chokeslams IRS and finishes with the Razor’s Edge at 19:32. Martel attacks from behind and it triggers a huge brawl, allowing IRS to nail Razor with the briefcase, giving us the countout at 20:41.
Martel goes after the Kid and they do a nice stalemate sequence before Kid goes to the arm. Over to Bomb, and this time Kid counters with speed and puts him on the floor, then tries a tope suicida…and gets caught. Whoops. Nice spot. Back in, Bomb levels him with the slingshot clothesline, but misses a blind charge and gets rolled up for two. Kid fires away with kicks, but can’t get the tag to Marty. Martel hits Kid with a gutwrench for two. Martel goes up and gets caught, and finally it’s hot tag Marty. Into the turnbuckles for two. Kid & Jannetty get the double elbow on Martel and Kid finishes with a sunset flip at 25:49. Marty with another one on Bomb to end it at 26:02. Survivors: 1-2-3 Kid and Marty Jannetty. Boring middle portion, but the rest was great stuff. ***1/2 Kid & Jannetty would of course have one last upset in them a few weeks later on RAW.
Meanwhile, Ray Combs interviews the Hart family. It’s so sad having to shoehorn Shawn Michaels into this feud. As if anyone would ever care about a Bret v. Shawn match at Survivor Series.
Bret, Keith, Owen and Bruce Hart v. The Blue Knight (Greg Valentine), The Black Knight (Jeff Gaylord), The Red Knight (Barry Horowitz) and Shawn Michaels
The Hart women are at ringside and Georgia has a crying baby with a soother. I know it can’t be Teddy at this point, but MAN the resemblance is astounding. All he would need to do is get fired by the WWF multiple times and it would be uncanny. Shawn starts with Bruce and gets run into the Red Knight as a result. Bruce controls Shawn with an armbar and it’s over to Keith, who reverses a suplex into a small package for two. Keith works on the arm, but Shawn brings in Red. Owen quickly dominates and hiptosses him, so it’s over to Black. He gets triple-teamed by the Harts, so Blue comes in. Bret clotheslines him for two and the Harts work him over. Bruce gets caught with a cheapshot and Red gets a butterfly suplex for two. Black pounds Bruce down, but falls victim to a backslide for two. Shawn dumps Bruce and drags him back in, but Bruce hits his finisher (a clothesline, no really) and makes the tag to Bret. Bret rolls up Black for two and gets a small package for two. Middle rope elbow gets two. Owen hits him with the leg lariat and a brawl erupts, as all the heels collide and Owen finishes Black with a missile dropkick at 10:48.
Bret works on Red’s legs, and Keith continues on with that. Yes, this match CAN get more boring, why? Here’s the problem with it, besides the obvious one of replacing Jerry Lawler at the last minute with Shawn Michaels: Clearly the dynamic of the original match was supposed to be the Hart Family being forced to eliminate all the Knights before they could even touch Lawler, but here Shawn actually started the match, so there’s no payoff. Anyway, Blue works on Keith’s arm, not even trying to hide his identity. Ray Combs, on commentary, gets the unintentional shoot comment of the show when he notes “This is painful to watch.” Word. The beating of Keith just drags on and on until Bret gets the hot tag and finishes Red with the Sharpshooter at 18:00. Blue attacks Bret and tosses him, and back in Shawn takes over on Bret. Back elbow gets two. And it’s time for the chinlock. Over to Blue, who gets two. Owen comes in and hammers away in the corner, and Shawn bumps out and takes a punch from Stu. Owen follows with a pescado, and finishes Blue back in the ring with a Sharpshooter at 23:44. So it’s Shawn by himself, and he superkicks Bruce for two. Bret comes in and whips Shawn around the ring, and gets the legsweep for two. Shawn goes to the eyes, so Bret tags Owen in, and Owen accidentally collides with the blinded Bret and Shawn rolls him up for the pin at 27:25. And so begins Owen’s heel turn. Bruce clotheslines Shawn for two and goes to a sleeper, and then Bret comes in and tries to finish, but Shawn runs away to end it at 30:55. THANKFULLY. *1/2
SMW Tag titles: The Rock N Roll Express v. The Heavenly Bodies
Still weird, even in the age of WWE owning everything. The Bodies toss Ricky and get dragged out of the ring themselves as a result, and Ricky hits them with a tope. Back in, Robert controls Del Ray with a flying headscissors and Ricky comes in for the double elbow. Pritchard comes in and hammers away in the corner, but Ricky hits the Bodies with hiptosses. The RNR do double monkey-flips out of the corner and the row-boat spot, which was just looking archaic even in 1993. The Express were never really able to reinvent themselves for the 90s and it shows. Ricky controls Del Ray with armdrags, and heel miscommunication results in the Express clearing the ring. Back in, Pritchard catches Ricky with a powerbomb (“Kind of like Adam Bomb’s Atom Smasher” notes JR, neutered by Corporate even back then). Over to Del Ray for some tasteful grinding, and Ricky gets tossed and moonsaulted by Del Ray. Back in, that gets two. Powerslam gets two, as Pritchard cuts off a comeback attempt. Del Ray with a snap suplex. A side slam into a Pritchard bulldog gets two. See, now fans GET this stuff. The subtle 80s offense and goofy spots fade away after a while, but take Ricky Morton and beat the everloving fuck out of him and people will POP. Del Ray tries a powerbomb and Morton reverses to a rana for two. He gets a small package on Pritchard for two. Del Ray comes in with a moonsault press for two, but Ricky DDTs both Bodies, and it’s hot tag Robert. Ricky rolls up Del Ray, but Pritchard tosses him for a nice bump. Robert calls for the DQ, but that’s not illegal in the WWF and I bet no one watching in the arena got that whole sequence. RNR with a double dropkick on Pritchard, but Del Ray hits Robert with the racket and the Bodies regain the titles at 13:40. Crowd didn’t get it, but as an SMW fan I was digging it. ***1/4 Now, if Ricky and Robert had really wanted to go national again, there was a way. A couple of years after this Jerry Lawler brought them into Memphis against PG-13, and they wrestled as pretty much carbon copies of Tully & Arn, managed by a manic Mark Curtis, and THAT was the reinvention that could have made them stars again. If you’ve never seen that match, I’d highly recommend checking it out because it’s the craziest shit ever.
Bam Bam Bigelow, The Headshrinkers & Bastion Booger v. The Doinkwhackers & Doinks on a Mission.
Truly high concept comedy here. Doink himself is not even involved in the match, so this must be near the point when Matt Borne left. Seems to be a running theme tonight. I don’t think anyone’s ever actually nailed his departure date down. The crowd chants “We want Doink”, clearly annoyed by bait-and-switch once they realize that Doink is not actually in the match, but the babyfaces just kind of act like they’re cheering for them. So onto the alleged comedy, as Butch hits Samu with a water balloon and pins him at 3:00. Just accept it. Over to Booger, who drops a leg on Butch, and Bigelow chokes away on the ropes. Booger sits on him for the pin attempt, but gets distracted by a banana and gets pinned by Mabel at 5:58. Over to Fatu, who is armed with Afa’s turkey dinner, and hammers on Luke with it. Mo comes in on a scooter, however, and Bam Bam’s had it. Fatu goes up with the flying splash, but slips on a banana peel and gets pinned at 8:53. Yes, THEY LITERALLY did the “slip on a banana peel” finish. Bam Bam is alone and slugs it out with Mabel, then puts him down with a shoulderblock. The Doinks all dogpile on him and pin him at 10:55, however. Probably one of the worst matches in the history of the Survivor Series. -*** The “real” Doink appears on the video screen to taunt Bigelow afterwards, but I don’t think it’s Borne.
Lex Luger, Undertaker, Rick Steiner and Scott Steiner v. Ludvig Borga, Yokozuna, Jacques and Crush
C’mon, where’s Undertaker’s flag outfit to go along with the rest of the team? What a prima donna. Scott starts with Jacques and hits him with an overhead suplex for two, and we’re over to Rick. Jacques wisely brings in Yokozuna, but Rick overpowers him and puts him on the floor. Back in, the Fanatics pound on Rick in their corner, but he goes up and hits Borga with a flying forearm for two. He goes up again with a flying bodypress, but Borga rolls through for the pin at 5:08. That looked REALLY bad. I think they had to go home early there because of an injury to Rick. So Scott comes in and presses Jacques into Crush’s arms. Jacques playing the coward who hides behind the bigger teammates is pretty funny stuff. Wrong match for it, but funny. Crush hammers on Scott, but walks into a butterfly bomb and Scott clotheslines him down for two. And here’s Macho Man, but Crush doesn’t bite. He works on Scott’s leg, but now Savage fights his way through the Usual Gang of Idiots again, and the brawl is on. Crush is counted out at 11:39.
Back in the ring, Jacques holds a rear chinlock on Scott and puts him down with an elbow for two. Piledriver gets two. Hot tag to Luger and he goes to the middle rope with an elbow for the pin at 14:06. Really? Well I guess this IS the event where people traditionally get pinned by clotheslines. So now we just need to get rid of the last of the deadwood in the form of Scott Steiner, and here’s Borga to do that. Borga puts him down with a clothesline and hits a corner splash, then clotheslines him again on the way down. Borga to the top for AIR FINLAND (I don’t even know what that might have been, but it needs to exist), but Scott superplexes him for two. Yokozuna has had enough of this bullshit and no-sells a Frankensteiner attempt, then finishes Scott with the Hulkbuster at 17:00.
So finally the actual main event, with Luger & Undertaker v. Yokozuna & Borga. Yoko chokes away on the ropes, but misses the big fat splash and Luger slugs away. Yoko clotheslines him down, however, and Borga comes in for a punt to the ribs. Bobby’s line about Undertaker coming up with a basketball team “for guys six feet and under” actually makes Vince stop and think for a second. He will be missed on RAW so I’ll enjoy him while I can. Yoko whips Luger around and then misses the corner splash, and finally Undertaker comes into the match 21:00 in. DDT for Yokozuna, but he walks into a belly to belly suplex. He keeps sitting up and Yoko keeps putting him down, finally getting the butt splash. A second one misses, however, and they fight to the floor for the double countout at 23:24. LAAAAAAAME. I know why and where they were going with it, but still, LAAAAAME. So that leaves Borga and Luger and you’d think Luger can’t possibly fuck THIS one up. Borga with a sideslam for two. Delayed suplex gets two. Powerslam gets two. Clotheslines get two. Luger comes back for a double clothesline that puts both guys down, but now Fuji gives Borga the salt bucket to take over. That gets two. Luger makes the ALL AMERICAN COMEBACK with a powerslam for two, and the STAINLESS STEEL FOREARM OF DEATH finishes at 27:58. And then the giant WTF ending sees Santa Claus coming out to celebrate with Luger. Yeah, OK. **1/2
1993 was a BAD year for PPV. Recommendation to avoid.