Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan are in the booth, live from San Antonio, Texas. According to thehistoryofwwe.com, the show drew a sellout crowd of 8,000. The show drew a buyrate of 1.00, which roughly equates to 140,000 buys. Those were less than half of the number of households that bought Survivor Series, making the WWF quickly abandon this experiment of doing small, cheap, weekly pay-per-views.
A replay of WWF Champion the Undertaker and Paul Bearer’s promo at the end of Survivor Series is shown.
Opening Contest for the Intercontinental Championship: Bret Hart (Champion) (25-0-3) defeats Skinner (11-2-1) via submission to the Sharpshooter at 13:47:
This was originally booked to be Bret defending the title against the Barbarian but it was switched for unexplained reasons. Some young female fans lose their minds when Bret gives one of them a pair of his shades, hyperventilating like they are attending a Beatles concert in the 1960s. Skinner gets a jobber entrance, which does not say much for his prospects. Bret deconstructs the man from the Everglades for five minutes until Skinner rakes his eyes and throws him shoulder-first into the ring post. This unleashes Skinner’s boring offense until he uses a shoulderbreaker for two. He follows that up by blasting Bret with a gator claw, but he fails to keep the attack going on Bret’s shoulder, prompting Monsoon to conclude that the challenger is dumb. Skinner delivers his inverted DDT finisher, but Bret kicks out. Surprisingly, there was no effort made to protect it by having Skinner delay a cover. A Skinner dive off the second rope eats boot and that triggers the moves of doom. Bret is mad that the second rope elbow drop fails to get a three count, allowing Skinner to use an O’Connor roll for a near-fall. Skinner goes to the top rope but Bret slams him off and the Sharpshooter allows Bret to retain. Heenan makes the ridiculous claim afterward that Bret has ended Skinner’s undefeated streak even though Skinner lost twice before this and one of those losses was to Bret on the November 18 edition of Prime Time Wrestling. This was a decent opener but it was all Bret because Skinner’s offense was putrid. Rating: **½
Sean Mooney interviews Jake Roberts. Roberts says he made Randy Savage flail like a child two weeks ago and that he got a rush seeing Elizabeth scream about it. He adds that WWF President Jack Tunney is responsible for anything he does in the ring.
Gene Okerlund talks with Randy Savage and Elizabeth. Savage promises to crush Roberts with the big elbow for the 1-2-3. That will give him a rush when he celebrates with Elizabeth.
Randy Savage (0-1) pins Jake Roberts (22-1) after the flying elbow drop at 6:25:
Appropriately, Savage blitzes Roberts from behind during Roberts’ entrance but Roberts recovers by using the referee as a shield and nailing Savage in the gut. Roberts works over Savage’s bandaged left arm but never goes for a submission. Savage blocks the DDT by ramming Roberts into the corner and Roberts sells his ribs as Savage comes off the top rope with the big elbow. This was a fun brawl that fit the tone of the feud, coming off as more of a fight than a wrestling match. The big shock was Savage going over clean in the feud’s first televised encounter. Rating: **¾
After the bell, Savage tries to grab a chair, but a ring attendant will not let him enter the ring. So, he grabs the timekeeper’s bell. However, referee Earl Hebner pulls it away from Savage and that distraction allows Roberts to catch Savage with the DDT. Roberts does it a second time and teases leaving before returning and going underneath the ring to pull out a black snake bag. That brings Elizabeth out to avoid a reprise of Superstars two weeks ago and she screams at Roberts to leave him alone. Roberts refuses to listen, DDTing Savage a third time and going for the bag. Then, Roberts grabs Elizabeth by the hair and slaps her. The crowd is so shocked that the incident does not get the heat one would expect. WWF referee Danny Davis intercedes afterward, and WWF President Jack Tunney follows, finally getting Roberts to head to the locker room. This whole bit was brilliant and made fans think Roberts won round one of the feud even though he lost the in-ring portion.
Okerlund catches up to Roberts, who runs down Elizabeth for begging for someone like Savage. He argues that he felt good when he DDT’d Savage but slapping Elizabeth gave him the best feeling of his life. He begs Savage to bring Elizabeth back for their next encounter so he can touch her again. As Roberts walks away, Okerlund loses any feeling of impartiality, yelling for Roberts to “Get to get the hell out of here!”
The British Bulldog (37-2-3) pins the Warlord (w/Harvey Wippleman) (24-4-2) with a crucifix at 12:48:
Having these two circle back to each other shows that the WWF does not have a good idea of what to do with either man. Considering the lack of good heel teams, reforming the Powers of Pain would not have been the worst move for the Warlord or Barbarian at this point. There is a fast start where the Bulldog takes the Warlord off his feet with a missile dropkick but when the Warlord takes charge his more deliberate offense slows things down. The Bulldog loses the fight over a piledriver and that results in a sunset flip spot where each man exchanges near-falls. The Warlord applies the full nelson but he still fails to lock the fingers like at WrestleMania VII. After a long while, the Bulldog refuses to give up so the Warlord tosses him to the canvas. That is not a good idea, though, as the Bulldog counters a blind charge to mount a comeback and gets a near-fall from a vertical suplex. The Warlord grabs the top rope to block a running powerslam and falls on top of the Bulldog for a two count. Then, the Bulldog bounces off the ropes and traps the Warlord in a crucifix to go three-for-three against the Warlord this year on television. The full nelson spot went too long but seeing these two throw bombs on each other never gets old. Rating: **½
Mooney interviews Randy Savage, who is irate over what happened in the ring. As he paces and falls on the ground, he screams about how it is his fault that Roberts got his hands on Elizabeth and that he will not have any control in getting a piece of Roberts.
Ted DiBiase & Repo Man (w/Sensational Sherri) defeat Virgil & El Matador when DiBiase pins Virgil after Repo Man knees Virgil in the back at 11:28:
The early sequence between El Matador and Repo Man is sloppy and the crowd heat gets better when DiBiase bumps over the top rope twice for Virgil. A Virgil blind charge puts him in peril. DiBiase gets two from a gutwrench suplex before a Virgil swinging neckbreaker off the ropes cues a hot tag to El Matador. Repo Man eats a flying forearm but DiBiase trips El Matador when he goes for El Paso del Muerte. Repo Man tosses a distracted El Matador to the floor, where DiBiase takes him to the steps and that puts El Matador in peril until a double clothesline spot with Repo Man allows Virgil to get a hot tag. Repo Man interrupts a pin when Virgil gives DiBiase a side Russian leg sweep and all hell breaks loose. In the midst of that, Sherri tries to hit Virgil with her shoe but heel miscommunication results and DiBiase takes the blow. However, Repo Man knees Virgil in the back and that is enough to put Virgil down for a three count. That finish was weak, but the crowd was into most of this, especially when Sherri got involved. Rating: ***
Okerlund interviews Hulk Hogan, who hypes himself as a designated hitman for his fans. He promises to regain the WWF Championship tonight.
WWF Championship Match: Hulk Hogan (3-1) beats the Undertaker (Champion w/Paul Bearer) (32-0) with a schoolboy roll up to regain the title at 13:11:
True to his word, WWF President Jack Tunney shows up to watch the match but chooses to sit in the aisle rather than close to the timekeeper. The Undertaker does not show a lot of respect for the WWF Championship Belt, carrying it in one hand and nearly letting it touch the ground. After Hogan gets in the ring, Bearer tries to help the Undertaker put the boots to the former WWF titleholder but is quickly knocked out of the ring as Hogan takes the fight to the champion. A hot shot counter is botched so the Undertaker merely pulls Hogan to the floor and starts choking to reverse the match’s momentum. Hogan fights out of a long claw hold and the Undertaker botches another move, this time tripping before he can hit the flying clothesline. They get back on the same page so that the Undertaker can do the move for a near-fall and when he goes for the ropewalk, Hogan pulls him off the top rope. A weak hulk up begins, cueing Ric Flair to come down the aisle. Tunney intercepts him and Hogan takes Tunney’s chair and smashes Flair in the back, causing him to fall on top of Tunney and knock him out. Hogan re-enters the fray against the Undertaker and Flair hops on the apron with the chair but heel miscommunication results. The Undertaker eats a big boot and Bearer hops on the apron to hit Hogan with the urn, but heel miscommunication happens again, and Hogan takes out the urn’s ashes, throws them in the Undertaker’s face, and rolls him up to inaugurate a fourth title win. As those events happen, Flair pulls Tunney off the floor so he can see them. As the description attests, the ending had overbooking times ten but the chaotic ending, and Tunney witnessing it, will matter later. The overbooking also covered for the Undertaker’s zombie-like wrestling and made up for some of the botches, possibly caused by nervousness. It is a classic case of a match being awful from a technical perspective but raised to passing standards by a hot crowd and extracurriculars. Plus, the title changed hands so that has to count for something. Rating: **
After the bell, Tunney talks with the referee. Heenan begs for a restart on commentary, but nothing happens.
The Last Word: This was a good show, helping to cleanse the stink of a lackluster Survivor Series pay-per-view less than a week earlier. The San Antonio crowd was hot for every match, elevating a bad main event into something worth watching. One keeps wondering if the WWF ran the Hulk Hogan-Ric Flair program too soon because Flair running interference against Hogan is getting him more heat than showing up in September and proclaiming himself “the real world’s champion.”
Up Next: WWF Superstars for December 7!