wrestling / Video Reviews

Dark Pegasus Video Review: The Summerslam Anthology — Summerslam ’90

August 17, 2009 | Posted by J.D. Dunn
The 411 Rating
Community Grade
Your Grade
Dark Pegasus Video Review: The Summerslam Anthology — Summerslam ’90  

Summerslam ’90: The Heat Returns!

by J.D. Dunn

Reprint from 2007ish

It’s summer of 1990, and the U.S. is on the verge of a major military conflict with Iraq (the first time). The WWF was trying like the dickens (yeah, I said it) to get the Warrior as over as Hogan was. It didn’t work.

  • August 27, 1990
  • Live from Philadelphia, Pa.
  • Your hosts are Vince McMahon and Roddy Piper.

  • Opening Match: Power & Glory (w/Slick) vs. The Rockers.
    The Rockers were in a holding pattern at this point, but the alleged original plan was to build a feud here, have the Harts drop the titles to the Rockers, allowing P&G a tag title feud. That never happened due to politics and the infamous broken turnbuckle match. I guess everything turned out okay for Shawn, though. Shawn has an injured knee coming into this match, so Hercules hits him in the leg with his chain, providing a convenient storyline reason for Shawn not to do anything. I believe this was also around the time Shane Douglas started teaming with Marty as an honorary Rocker. Funny how things work out. Janetty and Herc screw up a slam-reversal spot early, but having Janetty carry the match probably isn’t the ideal situation at this point. Janetty hits the thrust kick (Sour Chin Music?). A fistdrop gets two, but Herc breaks up the count. Janetty tries the O’Connor Roll, but Herc nails him with a clothesline, and P&G finish with the superplex/splash combo at 5:59. No Shawn = no fun. P&G destroy Shawn’s knee after the match to give him some time off. 1/4*

  • Mr. Perfect whines about having to defend the Intercontinental Title to an unknown quantity in The Texas Tornado. He was *supposed* to be facing (and losing to) Brutus Beefcake, but Beefcake had his face caved in during a parasailing accident when Jim Brunzell’s knee hit him in the face. Nasty stuff.
  • Intercontinental Title: Mr. Perfect (w/Bobby Heenan) vs. The Texas Tornado.
    Perfect outclasses him with wrestling moves early. Von Erich fires back with a clothesline that topples Perfect to the floor. Tornado goes after the arm, but Perfect clotheslines him and starts slapping him around. Tornado comes back with the Iron Claw, which was not really over outside of Texas at this point. That sets up the discus punch (and epic sell, of course) for the win and the title at 5:13. The WWF soon realized that Kerry Von Erich was not the most stable leg on the dresser (so to speak), so Perfect took the title back at a TV taping later in the year. Not bad for the time given, but then Curt Hennig was always willing to put over a newcomer with his bumping. *

  • Backstage, Heenan demands — DEMANDS, I SAY – a rematch for the title on behalf of Perfect.
  • Queen Sherri vs. Sapphire.
    This is the Sherri “Thunder” Lyger look for Martel tonight. Sapphire is a no-show, so Sherri wins by forfeit. [N/R]

  • A worried Dusty Rhodes says he hasn’t seen Sapphire, but he’s concerned that her mysterious benefactor may have something to do with her disappearance. Hmm. Who do we know that has a lot of money?
  • The Warlord (w/Slick) vs. Tito Santana.
    Tito did such a good job putting Warlord’s old running buddy, Barbarian, over that they figured he’d do a good job here. Warlord slams Tito into the post and works the lower back. Tito blocks a charge and hits the Flying Forearm. Warlord gets his foot on the ropes, though, and finishes with a powerslam at 5:29. Tito could drag a solid match out of anyone, which is why everyone else got pushed around him. *

  • Demolition (the Ax, Smash & Crush version) call the Legion of Doom “second-rate imposters.” Hopefully, I don’t have to explain why that’s ironic.
  • WWF Tag Team Titles: Demolition vs. The Hart Foundation.
    First Fall: Smash and Crush for Demolition. The Harts isolate Smash’s arm early (“game plan”), but Crush catches Bret in mid-air and slams him. Crush gets cradled for two. He tags out but knees Anvil from the apron to allow the Demos to take over. Bret tags back in and gets a hot nearfall off a Russian Legsweep. Why on earth would that get a hot reaction? Crush sneaks in and legdrops the Hitman as he’s covering Smash. That allows the Demolition Decapitation at 6:18.

    Second Fall: Bret continues to get pounded by Crush. He desperately hits a clothesline and makes the HOT TAG TO NEIDHART! Anvil fires off forearms and powerslams Smash for two. Bret whips Anvil into a shoulderblock, and the Harts set up for the Hart Attack, but Crush tosses the ref for the DQ at 10:35.

    Third Fall: Bret gets two off a sunset flip as Ax sneaks out and hides under the ring. The Harts try their whip-your-partner trick again, but Smash avoids. Neidhart powerslams Bret into a cover on Smash for two. Smash rolls to the floor, and Ax slides in. The ref gets caught up in a brawl between Crush and Neidhart while Ax & Smash prepare to finish Bret with the Demolition Decapitation. The Legion of Doom comes down and breaks it up, though. Neidhart slingshots into a shoulderblock on Crush, and Bret cradles him for the win and the titles at 15:49. Really fun match, and it was nice to see Demolition getting a taste of their own medicine after months of cheap heel tactics. Neidhart was supposed to be fired after this match, but the Harts vs. Rockers transition match was so bad that it was wiped from the books, and the Hart Foundation got stuck with a long title reign. The big question is, though, why not just transition directly from Demolition to the Rockers since Shawn and Marty would have garnered a lot of sympathy babyface heat and their win would have been more dramatic. ***1/4

  • Lots of interviews follow.
  • Jake Roberts vs. Bad News Brown.
    The Big Boss Man is the special referee. I don’t remember the exact cause of the feuds here, but basically Brown thinks everyone is a cracker. He also has a sewer rat to counteract Jake’s snake. Why not a mongoose? As with many Jake PPV matches, he goes for the DDT early, and Bad News keeps ducking out. Bad News wins a brawl on the outside. Back in, Jake avoids a fistdrop and sets up for the DDT. Bad News backdrops out of it, though. Bad News finally gets sick of the match and this Jake with a chair for the DQ at 4:45. Bad News tries to squash Damien, but Boss Man saves the snake. Bad News starts to go after the Boss Man, but he finds he’s outnumbered and heads to the back. This would be Bad News’ last significant appearance. He was apparently very upset about never getting a significant run with anyone at the top outside of Randy Savage, despite promises made by Vince McMahon. He’d wind up in Calgary again for a while, hoping to get a job as a booker with an indie, but nothing ever materialized. He died of a heart attack earlier this year, which is truly sad because most of his best work is buried in Calgary footage that no one will ever see. The Kayfabe reason for Brown getting kicked to the curb was that he manhandled Jack Tunneyon an episode of “The Brother Love Show.” *1/2
  • Speaking of…
  • The Brother Love Show
    Evil turncoat Sgt. Slaughter warns the U.S. not to interfere in Iraqi affairs or else we’ll get our collective ass kicked. See, even *he* knew it, Dick Cheney!

  • Sean Mooney interrupts his own interview with the Orient Express to give us a breaking news update…
  • …we have a Sapphire sighting. Unfortunately, it’s kind of like that bigfoot footage. Slightly blurred and quick. All we see are knuckles dragging and someone going behind a door. Okerlund thanks the maker that she’s safe.
  • Jim Duggan & Nikolai Volkoff vs. The Orient Express (w/Mr. Fuji).
    Volkoff and Duggan sing “God Bless America” before the match and are at least as bad as Volkoff and Zhukov used to be with the Soviet National Anthem. Fuji breaks it up with a cane, and the Express attacks. It doesn’t last long, though, as Duggan finishes with the 3-Point Charge at 3:22. Take that… people who don’t look like us! 1/4*

  • Dusty Rhodes tries to get Sapphire out of the dressing room, but there’s no answer.
  • Before the next match, Ted Dibiase and Virgil reveal that they have purchased Sapphire. They overpaid. I don’t even know what they promised her, but they overpaid. Sapphire would disappear soon after, which made the turn that much more nonsensical.
  • Dusty Rhodes vs. Randy Savage (w/Sensational Sherri).
    Rhodes is so distraught that Savage is able to attack him in the aisle. Rhodes fires back with rights and hits a dropkick. Sherri tosses herself in the middle and slips Savage her purse. That’s enough of a distraction for Savage to nail Dusty with the purse and get the pin at 2:16. Can you believe this would have been a dream match only two years earlier? 1/4*

  • Hulk Hogan dedicates his match with Earthquake to the fallen Tugboat. Um, what about Hercules and Jim Duggan? Poor Herc was so distraught at the thought of being squashed by the Earthquake that he took solace in the warm, loving, caring, caressing arms of Paul Roma.
  • Hulk Hogan (w/the Big Bossman) vs. Earthquake (w/Dino Bravo & Jimmy Hart).
    I don’t remember the exact reason, but Bossman is subbing for Tugboat Thomas, who was supposed to be in Hulk’s corner for moral support after Earthquake attacked him. Quake overpowers Hogan early and blocks a slam. Hogan blocks a charge and knocks Quake down with a roundhouse right. Bossman and Bravo each get involved, but Hebner is in a good mood after having gotten some poon the parking lot, so he lets it go. I know. It’s a disturbing though, but what else could explain him letting such blatant interference go? Quake works Hogan’s back and actually works in a Boston Crab, which is a “wrestling move” that you didn’t often see him use on this side of the Pacific. Hogan collapses under another slam attempt, and Quake grabs a bearhug. Hogan fights out of it but runs right into a powerslam. Quake hits a pair of Earthquake Splashes, but Hogan hulks up, slams him and drops the leg. Normally, that would be the end, but Hebner is arguing about the Big Bang Theory with Dino Bravo and doesn’t see Jimmy Hart break up the pin. Hogan goes to the floor and slams Earthquake on a table. Hogan slips back in before the 10-count to pick up the cheap win at 13:10. Well, that was lame after 13 minutes of inaction. Hogan and Bossman fight off the Canadians after the match. Hogan really should have gone over cleanly here after all the carnage Earthquake was causing. 3/4*

  • WWF Heavyweight Title, Steel Cage: The Ultimate Warrior vs. Rick Rude (w/Bobby Heenan).
    Pinfall or escape rules. Rude dares Warrior to start the match up at the top of the cage, so Warrior does. They fight on top, an Rude falls back into the ring. Warrior comes off with a double ax-handle. Rude finally ducks out of the way of a charge and takes over. Warrior powers out of the Rude Awakening, but his splash finds Rude’s knees. Rude hits the Rude Awakening on the second try, but instead of going for a pin (or for the door), he climbs up to the top of the cage and tries a fist drop. Even Heenan is yelling at him for that one. Warrior punches him in the gut and goes for the door, but Heenan slams it on his head. Bobby tries to pull Rude out, but Warrior has a grip on Rude’s tights, pulling them down as Rude goes toward the door. Heenan gets pulled in and takes some big bumps. Gotta admire a craftsman. A press slam knocks Rude out, and Warrior is able to go over the top at 10:04. The fans came to see Hogan and the Earthquake, so this was the equivalent of one of those matches they tack on at a house show. 3/4*
  • The 411: Warrior continued to bomb out for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that Hogan was always there to save the day if it went just the slightest bit wrong. It wasn't until 1993, when they were forced to find someone new, that guys like Bret Hart were able to get over. The PPV isn't that good outside of the tag title match, and the big angle here centered around Sapphire who would disappear almost immediately after this show.

    Thumbs down.

    Final Score:  4.5   [ Poor ]  legend

    article topics

    J.D. Dunn

    Comments are closed.