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Dark Pegasus Video Review: Survivor Series 1990

September 18, 2007 | Posted by J.D. Dunn
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Dark Pegasus Video Review: Survivor Series 1990  

Survivor Series 1990
by J.D. Dunn

  • November 22, 1990
  • Live from Hartford, Conn.
  • Your hosts are Gorilla Monsoon and Roddy Piper.

  • Opening Match: The Ultimate Warrior, Texas Tornado & The Road Warriors vs. Mr. Perfect & Demolition (w/Mr. Fuji & Bobby Heenan).
    This was during the transition from Ax & Smash to the infinitely less interesting Smash & Crush. Nice to see the hair plugs are working for Bill Eadie. Hawk jumps Smash to start, and we get the dream LOD vs. Demolition match-up. The match breaks down into a brawl, and Ax gets pinned after a powerslam at 2:59. Hawk winds up playing face-in-peril for a while, which doesn’t really matter because he doesn’t sell anyway. He gets the hot tag, causing the match to disintegrate into another brawl, and both Demolition and LOD are disqualified at 7:12. That leaves Perfect in a one-on-two with Von Erich & the Warrior. Warrior goes nuts, tossing Heenan into the audience and nearly taking out Referee Shane McMahon at ringside. Perfect gets pinballed around the ring until Von Erich misses a corner charge. That staggers Kerry long enough for Perfect to finish with the Perfectplex at 10:38. Warrior charges in, but Perfect catches him with another Perfectplex. Warrior kicks out at two. Perfect stays on him, but Warrior keeps kicking out. Warrior makes the big comeback and finishes with the flying shoulderblock and splash at 14:07. Bleh. Survivor: The Ultimate Warrior *

  • Dusty Rhodes, Koko B. Ware & The Hart Foundation vs. Ted Dibiase, Honkytonk Man, Greg Valentine & The Mystery Partner (w/Jimmy Hart & Virgil).
    The Mystery Partner turns out to be…the Undertaker! And talk about a great debut! They cut to the crowd for some guy’s reaction, which is somewhere around **GULP!** He dominates both members of the Hart Foundation (who were the tag champs at the time). Koko tags in, and the Undertaker cowers in fear! Well, okay, no. Instead, he just sidesteps Koko’s charge and finishes him with the Tombstone at 1:43. Valentine calls for a tag, so Taker accommodates him, even though Take had everything well in hand. That allows the babyfaces to get at least some offense. Bret gets caught in the wrong corner, but makes the hot tag to Anvil. Neidhart comes in and kills Honky with a powerslam at 4:33. Dusty gets some offense in on Dibiase. Neidhart comes in for more of the same but gets tripped up by Virgil. That provides enough distraction for Dibiase to jump Neidhart with a clothesline to send him packing at 5:55. The heels come up with a new strategy: every time they get in trouble, they tag in the Undertaker. Dusty dominates Dibiase but allows him to fall into the heel corner where the Undertaker can tag in. Taker destroys Dusty and finishes him with a double ax-handle off the top at 8:31. Dusty goes after Brother Love, prompting the Undertaker to follow him down the aisle, and he gets counted out at 9:24. Well, there’s one way to eliminate him without him having to get beat. Somehow, in all of that, Bret small packages Valentine for the pin at 10:02. Bret jumps Dibiase immediately and hits a pescado. Bret dominates back inside, but Dibiase reverses a whip, sending Bret into the turnbuckle. Bret trips over Dibiase and appears to tweak his knee, but it’s all a ruse! Bret rolls Dibiase up for two. Virgil’s interference backfires, and Bret gets another two. Bret goes for a crossbody, but Dibiase rolls through with a handful of tights for the win. Not much of a match until Dibiase and Bret got in there, but the debut of the Undertaker is certainly historic. Oh, and if you’re a longtime fan and thinking to yourself, “Wasn’t there a team called ‘The Undertakers’ before Mark Callaway showed up in the gimmick?” you’d be right. The Puccio brothers (you know one as ECW’s “Big” Sal E. Graziano) used to wrestle under the gimmick until Vince bought it from them specifically for Callaway. He also gave the former Undertakers a small run in the WWF as “Double Trouble.” So now you know. **

  • Jake Roberts, Jimmy Snuka & The Rockers vs. Rick Martel, The Warlord & Power & Glory (w/Slick).
    Martel sprayed Jake in the face with his perfume “Arrogance,” so Jake is still partially blind at this point. That has to rank as one of the stupidest feuds of all time, but I guess it had its own sort of internal logic. The Rockers use their speed to confound the Warlord early. At this point, it was getting obvious that Shawn was more motivated than Marty. Jake tags in, so Martel scurries out. Warlord tags back in and trades blows with Snuka. Marty comes back in, though, and has his crossbody countered to a powerslam at 5:17. Jake assists Shawn on a rana, and they doubleteam the Warlord. Shawn winds up playing face-in-peril for a while, even selling for Paul Roma. Interesting thing I heard a while back: when Shawn held out in 1993, WCW wanted to include him in the new Four Horsemen group with Flair, Arn & Orndorff, but when he re-signed with the WWF, the spot fell to – Paul Roma. Of course, that goes against a lot of backstage cannon that we already know, but it’s interesting to think about. Martel rolls up Snuka with a handful of tights at 9:46. Jake comes in but can’t get at Martel before he tags out. Of course, Martel cheapshots him once Jake turns his back. Shawn does some good stuff with Roma, but Herc gets the blind tag and elbows Shawn in the back of the head. Power & Glory doubleteam Shawn for a while and finish him at 15:18. That leaves Jake alone in a four-on-one. Jake hits a desperation DDT on the Warlord, but Martel sprays him in the eyes again, causing Jake to chase him to the back for the countout at 18:05. Shawn nearly carried seven guys to a good match. Nearly. *1/2

  • Sean Mooney catches up with the Hulkamaniacs (Hogan, Jim Duggan, Tugboat and the Big Bossman). Everyone here looks like a complete idiot…especially Mooney. Hogan offers to defeat Iraq if Bush needs him. Ask again in about 17 years.
  • Hulk Hogan, Jim Duggan, Tugboat & the Big Bossman vs. Dino Bravo, the Earthquake, Haku & the Barbarian (w/Jimmy Hart & Bobby Heenan).
    Just to screw with my head, Duggan and Haku do a pretty good little sequence. Well, that is until Duggan hits the wussiest back elbow you’ll ever see. Sadly, Haku, probably the best wrestler in the match, catches a Bossman slam at 3:16. Bossman, the only other decent wrestler at that point, works for a bit with the Barbarian. Duggan hits a few shoulderblocks on the Earthquake, but Jimmy Hart yanks down the ropes, spilling him to the floor (in plain view of referee Shane McMahon). Duggan grabs his 2×4 and wallops Earthquake for the DQ at 6:12. Hogan jumps in and goes toe-to-toe with Earthquake, utilizing a manly eyerake. He delivers slams all around and small packages Dino Bravo at 8:00. Bossman tries to chop down the Earthquake tree, but Quake catches him on a crossbody. Hogan shoves them over for two, but Earthquake squashes Bossman at 9:10. Hogan tries to slam Earthquake but fails both times. See, that’s silly because he was successful the first time. You want to build to the babyface’s success not drop off from it. Quake and Tugboat go at it about a year before they’d form the Natural Disasters. Tugboat is doing all right, but Hogan drags Earthquake to the floor for a brawl, getting both Tugboat and Earthquake counted out at 11:33. Well, that was pretty selfish of Hogan. If he’d let Tugboat do his thing it might be a two-on-one. Anyway, that leaves Hogan versus the Barbarian. Barbie hits his clothesline, but Hogan hulks up and finishes with the legdrop at 15:50. Hogan beats up Bobby Heenan for kicks. Heenan actually takes the best bump of the PPV. **

  • Quick interviews from fans. Some kid flashes gang signs! I’m shocked that they would leave in such vile…what? He’s deaf? Oh. Um. I’d like to apologize to the deaf community. Btw, I’d swear one of those fans is Matt Stryker.
  • Macho King dishes out the cranberry sauce of hate for the Ultimate Warrior.
  • Nikolai Volkoff, Tito Santana & the Bushwhackers vs. Sgt. Slaughter, Boris Zhukov & the Orient Express (w/Gen. Adnan & Mr. Fuji).
    FEEL THE STAR POWER! Before the match, Sgt. Slaughter stops to make fun of the troops because he had Thanksgiving dinner in the comfort of his own home while they have to eat in the desert. Tito nails Boris with the flying forearm at 0:49. The Whackers finish Kato at 1:49. Tito finishes Tanaka at 2:13. Well, this is like a metaphor for the first Iraq war. I don’t know how they justify all these clean finishes! Finally, Slaughter gets in and kills Nikolai. He finishes with an elbowdrop or something at 5:26. I’m actually doing picture-in-picture with Starrcade ’90 at this point, just so I can finish the show. The Bushwhackers go at 6:32 and 6:55. That leaves Tito and Slaughter. Slaughter, whose main offensive move is the eyerake, slowwwwwwly works Santana over. The ref gets bumped so there’s no one to see General Adnan poking Tito in the back with the flagpole. Well, there’s outside ref Shane McMahon, who was probably busy thinking about getting his Benz detailed. Slaughter applies a horrible Camel Clutch for the submission, but the ref decides he actually did see Adnan and disqualifies Slaughter at 10:36. This was stupifyingly bad. You will never see anything this bad…ever. O

  • Wait. I take that back because Mean Gene stands by near the egg, which had been hyped for weeks. And…it’s hatching. It’s…it’s the Goobledegooker. See, he’s a guy in a giant turkey costume. Specifically, he’s Hector Guerrero in a turkey costume. I would laugh, but there’s a real tragedy in that Hector was a fantastic wrestler – at least as good as Eddy and maybe better – but his two shots at the big time were this and “Lazertron.” Well, at least this thing was forgotten about immediately afterward, at least as far as the WWE is concerned.
  • Timeout. CHRIST ON A CRACKER, THIS SHOW SUCKS!
  • Time in. Note how Hogan muscles in on Warrior’s interview time. Not that I mind on this occasion.
  • Grand Finale: The Ultimate Warrior, Hulk Hogan & Tito Santana vs. Ted Dibiase, Rick Martel, the Warlord, and Power & Glory (w/Slick & Virgil).
    These are all of the survivors, conveniently divided among face and heel lines. I know it’s the Kayfabe era, but wouldn’t it be more realistic (and interesting, really) to put Dibiase with Hulk, Warrior and Tito to make the sides even? See, it’s this kind of creatively bankrupt booking that allowed the bottom to fall out in the early nineties anyway. Tito hits Warlord with a crossbody at 0:30. Dibiase avoids a flying forearm and covers for the point at 1:54. Hogan tags in but play face-in-peril. Power and Glory hit their finisher, but that’s just asking for trouble. Roma falls to a clothesline at 5:38. Warrior tags in and destroys Martel. Hulk tags back in and continues the beating until Martel just walks out at 7:20. Hogan destroys Dibiase, who was at the end of his singles usefulness. The legdrop finishes Dibiase at 8:38. Warrior tags in and splashes Herc to finish off the match at 9:08. Brisk, inoffensive and meaningless outside of trying to give Warrior one last rub. *1/4
  • The 411: The best match tops out at **, and the PPV is thoroughly pointless, notable only for Undertaker's debut (which *is* pretty cool) and the Grand Finale concept, which was never repeated. While there were worse shows, this one perfectly demonstrates the kind of stuck-inside-the-box thinking that killed the WWF from 1990-1992.

    Thumbs way down.

     
    Final Score:  3.0   [ Bad ]  legend

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