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WWF Prime Time Wrestling (5.15.1989) Review

August 22, 2019 | Posted by Adam Nedeff
Haku Prime Time Wrestling
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WWF Prime Time Wrestling (5.15.1989) Review  

-Originally aired May 15, 1989.

-Your hosts are Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan. Gorilla confirms that despite the Brain’s strenuous objections and attempts to negotiate an alternative, we WILL air the Duggan/Haku bout this week. Even worse news, Gorilla also confirms that Heenan hasn’t been invited to the “No Holds Barred” premiere party.

-From “Superstars,” with new lower-third graphics and new logo. Rugged Ronnie Garvin is your referee for this bout.

-They lock up as Vince points out that the shorter hair is a good look on Beefcake, so the “humiliation” by Savage didn’t really get anything accomplished. High knee by Beefcake sends Leone to the floor. Back in, Beefcake slams him, and the sleeper finishes.

-Bobby wonders how “mean” a guy can truly be when he’s only 4’8″, which leads to…


-Mean 4’8″ Gene looks back at the “ill” Ted DiBiase’s surprise assault on Jake Roberts last week. We get dueling promos afterward, and Jake warns he’s not playing around. Jake would have some real life trouble with the law that caused this angle to be re-worked in mid-stream, and we’re going to find out later that Jake actually has a “career-threatening neck injury” due to DiBiase’s attack.

WARLORD (with Mr. Fuji) vs. TIM HORNER

-Horner applies a hammerlock and Warlord just hiptosses out. Horner pops him with a right hand, but Warlord catches him coming off the ropes with an elbow to the chin that wakes this crowd right up. Horner tries going to the second rope, but Warlord catches him coming off with a powerslam for three. Horner’s fate is kind of funny. He quit the NWA because he refused to job to Lyle Alzado’s character on an episode of “Learning the Ropes” and ends up signed by the WWF to be a jobber. So he refuses to job in a fake worked wrestling match and the only work he can find is doing jobs in real worked wrestling matches.

NON-TITLE: DEMOLITION (Tag Team Champions) vs. HONKY TONK MAN & GREG “The Hammer” VALENTINE (with Jimmy Hart)

-From “Wrestling Challenge.” Smash atomic drops Greg and whips him into the corner, but Hammer catches him mid-charge with a knee and goes for the figure four. Smash fights him off, so Honky steps in and immediately gets mauled by both opponents. Honky fights back and Jimmy is yelling “New champions!” and ignoring the non-title status of the match. Bungled spot as Ax and Greg don’t seem to agree on HOW Ax should be countering a backdrop, and it ends up looking like Ax literally has brass balls and Greg knocks himself out running into his crotch.

-Referee gets bumped out to the floor and we have a melee in the ring with all four men. Jimmy Hart’s megaphone ends up in there too, but Ronnie Garvin hauls ass into the ring and sounds the bell before anything else can happen, giving the win by DQ to Demolition. Honky and Valentine attack Garvin post-match. This is as good a match and angle as you could get on Wrestling Challenge.

-Bobby Heenan sensed some weaknesses in Ax and Smash during the last match and thinks he knows just the team to finally pluck those belts away from them.


-Hillbilly Jim says he wants to get in the ring and tussle with anybody in the WWF, even Boris Zhukov. Way to aim high, Hillbilly. Next we hear from Bobby Heenan. Some guys in the WWF need snakes and boards to get ahead. They aren’t giants.

-From Boston Garden. It’s Lanny Poffo’s first match with the new persona and he runs down the Bruins, Sox, and Celtics in his poem for maximum effect. And by maximum effect, I mean he gets beaned by a cup of beer to a huge pop.

-Powers clotheslines him down and Genius stalls for a bit. Back in, and a dropkick sends the Genius back out. Suplex by Powers, and the Genius retreats one more time. Come to think of it, I don’t think we’ve ever seen Lanny Poffo and Danny Davis at the same time.

-Back from commercial, Powers wrings and snaps the arm repeatedly. Powers stays with the arm, but Poffo fights him off with punches and kicks. Chinlock by the Genius and the crowd unleashes the “boring” chant on cue. Lanny releases the hold and goes for a corner charge, taking a NICE bump when Powers gets out of the way. Genius fights back, slamming Powers down and coming off the top rope with a somersault splash for the three count. Lord Alfred dubs his finisher “the honor roll,” which would be a better name for a pinning combination, not a high-impact move. Pretty indifferent here. I love The Genius character but the match didn’t do anything for me.


-Tony Schiavone gets a rare turn at Special Interview duty, welcoming Miss Elizabeth to the platform. Jesse calls her a tramp to Vince’s disgust. She pledges her allegiance to Hulk Hogan and promises to be his manager for as long as Hulk needs her. Hulk and Liz as a combo was a problematic combo for a lot of reasons, obviously, so this is really the end of the Miss Elizabeth character as a full-time thing, and she’s pretty much a “guest star” for the next three years.


-The Barbarian continues trying to get the ball rolling as a singles star, but he has the wrong-ass manager to get that accomplished. Koko B. Ware puts Frankie through hell as the bird squawks and tries to maintain his balance while Koko screams that he’s ready for the Barbarian AND Randy Savage.

-Jim Neidhart implores us to see No Holds Barred.


-From “Wrestling Challenge.” Oh, hey, I have a trading card with this match on it! Hit Man slams him down as Gorilla mentions that Danny Davis is the referee, having been rehired for that position on a probationary basis. Gorilla oddly adds that he’s heard a rumor that Ted DiBiase paid to have Davis reinstated, which seems to imply that Danny is going to be a heel referee again, but they didn’t do that. Bret slams Wagner into position, and the ONE MOVE OF DOOM finishes, as the second rope elbow is enough to put Wagner away.


-From “Superstars.” Bad News attacks from behind as Jesse reminds us to see No Holds Barred because he has a cameo in it. Bad News chokes him out while Vince and Jesse also discuss Danny Davis and tell us he won’t be wrestling anymore. And it actually leads to a funny reaction from Bad News as Danny reprimands him for choking, and Bad News, shocked, yells “What happened to you?!” Ghetto blaster puts Stock away.


-From “Superstars,” where Jesse Ventura is upset because no one told him that Brother Love was being pre-empted for the Elizabeth segment.

-Double avalanche by the Towers while we hear from Demolition. Big splash by Akeem finishes.


-Honky wants a big hit…with his guitar. The Bushwhackers say things.


-From “Superstars.” Warrior attacks before the bell while we hear from Rick Rude, telling Warrior to get it all off his chest while he can. Warrior throws Burke to the floor and brings him back in for a hard clothesline. Big splash finishes.


-Hey, this is a neat combo! Blazer catches Arn in a drop toehold and works the arm. Arn backs him into the corner to break free. Blown spot that actually ends up looking cool as Owen tries to counter a corner charge by leaping over Arn, but his timing is off and he lands on Arn’s shoulders, and Arn collapses.

-Everyone tags and Koko throws punches at Tully Blanchard. Some stealth chicanery by the Busters sends Koko tumbling over the top and onto the floor. Back in, Tully applies a chinlock but Koko elbows out. He charges at Tully, but Tully gets out of the way and sends Koko back out to the floor. Koko finally gets the hot tag and Blazer tags on both Busters. Tully gets dropkicked to the floor and Blazer focuses on Arn in the ring. Tully and Koko start brawling on the floor while Blazer goes to the top rope to finish off Arn. Referee goes to the floor to break up Koko and Tully, so Arn seizes the opportunity to shake the ropes so that Blazer loses his balance and lands balls-first. Referee finally gets the melee broken up and walks Koko back to his corner, so Tully dashes into the ring for a spike piledriver, and that finishes. Good match, great dastardly ending.


-From “Superstars.” Vince and Jesse are in great form during the entrances here as Jesse says Vince should be one of the four jobbers carrying the throne to the ring (“Of course, one corner of it would be leaning down a bit”).

-Duggan clotheslines Haku down. Haku tries a shoulderblock and Duggan doesn’t budge. Haku tries it again and Duggan meets him with a hiptoss, and a forearm blow sends Haku retreating to the floor. Haku gets some offense going, but Duggan gets fired up by a shot to the head and throws lefts and rights at him. Haku smacks him with a clothesline, but misses a splash, and Duggan acts quickly, hitting the three-point stance right away to get the win and take the crown. Heenan is beside himself and grabs the crown and cape before Duggan can claim them. Duggan pretty much squashed Haku here and it’s weird how they’re trying to turn it into a feud after something this one-sided.

The final score: review Average
The 411
The switch to shorter matches from TV tapings has done this show a world of good. This week was a breeze to sit through.