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WWF Prime Time Wrestling (12.11.1989) Review

October 2, 2020 | Posted by Adam Nedeff
WWF Prime Time Wrestling 12-11-1989 Roddy Rowdy Piper
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WWF Prime Time Wrestling (12.11.1989) Review  

-Originally aired December 11, 1989.

-Your hosts are Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan in Studio A, Rowdy Roddy Piper in Studio B. Piper’s shtick this week is that Honky Tonk Man is in the feature match, so Piper has brought a guitar to strum throughout the show. Gorilla says that Piper was playing Christmas songs earlier and they sounded fantastic, and Bobby goes on a tangent; he hates Christmas music, the lyrics are pointless, and carolers irritate. Heenan says that the worst part of living in Beverly Hills is that if he throws water at the carolers, it won’t freeze.


-Dusty ducks a punch and struts to celebrate. Backdrop by Dusty and he calls for the elbow right away, but Brawler goes to the floor and suckers Dusty into following him. Dusty gets rammed into the post, much to the concern of that dedicated Dusty Rhodes fan who’s at ringside again this week.

-Back in, Brawler wrings the arm, as you often do in a Brooklyn-style brawl, Brawler tries an elbow and misses, and now Dusty takes him out to the floor and rams his arm into the post. And so that leads to a nice story, with Dusty doing exactly the same offense that Brawler dished out on him, working the shoulder over and wringing the arm. Brawler backs Dusty into the corner and rams him to break, but Dusty knocks him right back and drops the elbow to finish. Can’t believe I’m saying this but that didn’t go long enough. They seemed to be building to something and then the finish just happened out of nowhere.


-No Holds Barred! Coming December 27. Mean Gene recaps the Survivor Series, where Hulk was choked out, and then due to oxygen deprivation, he actually cut a promo afterward where he yelled “Well cut my legs off and call me Shorty!”


-Joined in progress from Toronto. Trivia, for those of you who have read Bret Hart’s book: This is the same card where Bret was damn near killed by a blown spot from Dino Bravo.

-Spinning kick by Volkoff, whom I like to imagine yelling “SPIN MOVE!” as he does that. Bearhug by Volkoff and the crowd is chanting “Boring” in less than one second. Rivera takes the hint and punches free from the hold right away. They seem to have some legit miscommunication going and Volkoff just shoves Rivera into the corner repeatedly while they try to figure out what they should actually do here, and Volkoff settles on “The hell with it, bearhug.” Rivera fights free and goes for a bodypress, but Volkoff rolls through and rolls him up for three, and the crowd cheers. Toronto really is bizarro world.

-Heenan still doesn’t believe that Piper can play the guitar. Piper tries to make a bet with him: If Piper can play one full song on the guitar by the end of the show, Heenan has to show up next week and be completely pleasant and full of Christmas cheer through the entire episode.
-Joined in progress from Toronto. They slug it out, but Genius goes to the eyes. Hillbilly responds with a big boot and that deadliest of 80s wrestling moves, the hand clap. Genius is on the mat but he makes the best of it, yanking Hillbilly by his overalls out to the floor. It turns into a brawl, and Genius makes it back into the ring first for the cheap count-out. I hope Toronto got ONE good match this month.

-We go back to the Survivor Series, where Boss Man dished out some hard times to Dusty Rhodes.


-From Superstars of Wrestling, and that Dusty Rhodes fan is at ringside yet again. Elbow and a headbutt by the Boss Man as we get pre-taped words from Boss Man, promising that he has something special in store for Dusty.

-Slick again gets distracted by the Dusty Rhodes fan, but Boss Man himself stays focused, and the Boss Man slam finishes. WWE Network dubs Boss Man’s babyface music over the post-match stuff and it feels completely wrong. Boss Man puts the ball and chain on Lawson, dropping the ball on his stomach and then using the chain to choke him out. Slick goes out and gets in Slick’s face, and she rears back and slaps him. That brings Boss Man out to ringside and he threatens to get violent with her, and that brings Dusty out for protection, giving her a human shield and walking her back to the locker room, where she’ll be safe. Man, how bad is your life if an ’80s pro wrestling locker room is your best hope for safety?


-Greg Valentine fumes at how Ronnie Garvin has ruined everything that Valentine has spent ten years building in the WWF. Hercules promises that the 1990s will be his decade.


-Akeem attacks before the bell. Duggan attacks back and knocks him down with a big right. Akeem tries a charge but misses. Duggan goes for an Irish whip, but Akeem reverses it follows with an avalanche. Mighty African groin thrusts wear down the proud American’s neck, and he applies a bearhug, akin to the bears one finds in darkest Africa. Gorilla suggests that Duggan could break it by reaching around, but we haven’t reached Attitude era yet, so Duggan remains helplessly trapped in a repeated succession of extended hugs for ten minutes, like a Southern Baptist at a family reunion.

-Big splash by Akeem misses and Duggan gets his second wind, ramming Akeem into the turnbuckle over and over. Akeem tries an Irish whip as a last ditch effort, but Hacksaw moves out of the way of the avalanche and rolls him up immediately for three. I’m actually completely shocked that we got a clean finish out of this match. It was 90% hugging though.

-So Bobby has considered Piper’s bet. Bobby’s stipulation: If Roddy doesn’t play the song, he has to forget Christmas altogether. No celebrating of any kind, and no music.


-Stone gets outsmarted by Luke on an attempted clothesline, with Luke just grinning like a goof at him while Butch sneaks in and clotheslines Stone from behind. Battering ram follows and the ‘Whackers have totally cleared the ring. Jobbers go back in but get clotheslined right back out. Horowitz and Stone regain their bearings and actually manage to overwhelm Luke for a bit. Stone chokes him out with the tag rope and the jobbers are actually cohesive enough to block a tag. Horowitz tags in and misses an attempted dropkick, and it’s hot tag Butch. Battering ram and the double stomachbreaker finish after a surprisingly eventful squash match.


-Brother Love is really, really angry to start off and brings out Ravishing Rick Rude and Bobby Heenan. They’re all furious about what Roddy Piper did to Brother Love two weeks ago, and they commiserate about how Roddy Piper has made all three of them look stupid over the past four months, and Rude is just ready to explode because Piper hasn’t gotten any kind of comeuppance from it. Great segment, as Rude really came off as a man pushed over the edge here.

“The Million Dollar Man” TED DIBIASE (with Virgil) vs. RENO RIGGINS

-DiBiase tries to pay Reno to throw the match. Reno refuses at first, but DiBiase slaps him with the money, and Reno turns around and leaves the ring. DiBiase turns his back to celebrate his victory, and Riggins heads up to the top rope and connects with a missile dropkick. Flying headscissors by Riggins, and DiBiase runs over to the ropes and goads Riggins. He backdrops Riggins out to the floor, and DiBiase is good and mad now. Hard clothesline by DiBiase, followed by a powerslam, and the Million Dollar Dream ends it. Another unexpectedly fun squash match.

-So finally, it’s the big moment where Piper plays the guitar, and Piper just happens to swivel his chair so his back is to the camera as he expertly “plays” the guitar. Heenan sees through it and refuses to honor the bet.


-Red Rooster thanks the fans for the support because his career is going exactly the way he wants it to go. Holy shit, really? Meanwhile, Mister Perfect is demanding a title shot.

-Rick Martel models some more fashions.


-The body glitter was an odd touch that nobody seems to talk about when reminiscing about this team. Ax and Smash ax and smash their opponents all about. The decapitator finishes quickly.

-Heenan is still refusing to honor the terms of the bet, but Gorilla is holding him to it.


-Honky stalls for a bit before finally locking up, only for Tito to elbow him out to the floor. Back in, Tito works the arm while Jimmy throws a tantrum. Match goes to the floor and Tito makes the mistake of rolling Honky back into the ring first and then rolling in himself, and Honky pounces on re-entry.

-Back from commercial with Tito caught in a chinlock. Tito fires back with punches and turnbuckle shots. Tito starts working the leg and sets up for the figure four, but he gets distracted by Jimmy, Honky attacks with the megaphone, and we’ve got a DQ. Eh.

-Bobby is still complaining about the bet, so Piper finally agrees to a new bet. If Piper wins, Heenan not only has to be the nicest, most pleasant, full-of-Christmas-cheer person in the studio, AND he has to wear a Santa suit. If Heenan wins, Piper has to crawl around the studio on his hands and knees and apologize to Heenan and Rick Rude for all the trouble he’s caused. They agree to the bet, and Gorilla announces at the close of the show that they’ve settled on a wrestling trivia contest to determine the winner.

The final score: review Average
The 411
Some of the star/star encounters were drags, but the squashes were surprisingly good TV this week.