Forget Crown Jewel. Let’s just forget about it. It might be the first of two November events this year, but the second is the one I’m looking forward to and that’s Survivor Series. So today, let’s get ready for it with a look back at the inaugural event!
Piggybacking off the success of WrestleMania III comes the WWF’s Thanksgiving tradition, the Survivor Series! This event was used to capitalize off the momentum and rivalry between Hulk Hogan and Andre The Giant, beginning the 2nd of what would become the WWF’s “Big 4” PPVs. The concept was to have 5-on-5 elimination matches, giving multiple wrestlers the opportunity to settle or continue feuds and rivalries within one match. Vince McMahon would leverage cable companies into showing his PPV and not the NWA’s Starrcade, which went head-to-head with the WWF on the same night. Ultimately, only a handful of providers would run the NWA show due to McMahon threatening to not allow those who did have WrestleMania IV. Enough with the small talk, let’s see who can hang on and survive for his squad at the Survivor Series!
Open: Gorilla & Jesse breakdown the rules for the elimination matches tonight. Elimination can occur by pinfall, submission, count-out or disqualification. Referees can also eliminate a participant at their discretion because of injury.
Backstage: Craig DeGeorge welcomes team captain The Honky Tonk Man and his squad. HTM says his team is ready to play a tune at the Survivor Series that nobody has ever heard before. He calls his squad the best team ever assembled, then warns Elizabeth to stay out of the ring or he may Shake, Rattle & Roll her. On the other side is ‘Mean’ Gene Okerlund with the opposing team and their captain ‘Macho Man’ Randy Savage. Steamboat talks about having scores to settle tonight, Duggan wanting the King to fall and Savage tells Honky Tonk he’s about to enter the danger zone for putting his hands on Elizabeth.
Match #1 Survivor Series Elimination Match: ‘King’ Harley Race, Hercules, ‘Outlaw’ Ron Bass, ‘Dangerous’ Danny Davis & WWF Intercontinental Champion The Honky Tonk Man w/’Colonel’ Jimmy Hart & Bobby ‘The Brain’ Heenan vs. Ricky ‘The Dragon’ Steamboat, Brutus ‘The Barber’ Beefcake, Jake ‘The Snake’ Roberts, ‘Hacksaw’ Jim Duggan & ‘Macho Man’ Randy Savage w/Elizabeth
Beefcake starts the match with Hercules, locking up and there’s a stalemate. Beefcake does a strut, then catches a knee to the midsection and Herc grabs a rear chinlock. Brutus rolls out and tries to drop a fist, misses and Hercules hits the ropes and a shoulder knockdown. Back into the ropes, Brutus locks in a sleeper and gets shoved into the his own corner, bouncing back into a hip toss. Davis & Bass try to come in, getting hip tossed themselves and Brutus is trying to figure out who’s legal. He slingshots Danny Davis in the ring, slamming him and then tagging The Snake. Roberts comes in and goes to the arm, Savage in to maintain the hold.
Steamboat tags, heading up top and coming down with an overhead chop, then a thrust kick. He whips Davis into the corner and runs at him, colliding with the boots and allowing Davis to tag in The King. Race comes in and lands a shoulderbreaker, then rams Steamboat into the turnbuckle. He sends Ricky across, Steamboat blocks and hits a 2nd rope karate chop. They exchange shots, Race tries to send Steamboat outside and both times The Dragon hangs onto the ropes and skins the cat back in. Race with a 3rd try, Steamboat switches the momentum and tosses The King to the floor. Harley recovers quickly, coming back in and delivering a belly to belly suplex for a count of 2. Steamboat crawls through The King’s legs, making the tag to Hacksaw who comes in and clotheslines Race out to the floor. Duggan gives chase and pounds away at The King outside, the referee’s count hits 10 and they have been counted out. ‘Hacksaw’ Jim Duggan & ‘King’ Harley Race have been eliminated.
Jake & Ron Bass enter the ring, Bass with control, slamming Roberts, but missing an elbow drop. Jake tags Savage who comes in with a knee to the back, whipping Outlaw into the corner and following with a back elbow and knee drop, that only gets 1. Macho slams Bass, then goes after Honky on the apron, but pays for it. HTM gets the tag and comes in to do a number on Savage. Macho turns the tide, but gets caught in the wrong corner, Bass coming back in with a back elbow and a 2 count. He whips Savage into the ropes, Macho ducks a clothesline and connects with a running elbow. The Outlaw rakes the eyes and attempts a piledriver, Savage flips him out, but gets caught in a side headlock. Macho backs Bass into the ropes and shoots him in as Beefcake makes a blind tag, Savage ducking down and The Barber with a dropkick, then a cover for a 3 count. ‘Outlaw’ Ron Bass is eliminated.
Hercules comes right in for an elbow drop, but misses and hits Bass instead. Brutus with a slam, but Hercules goes to the midsection and starts to pummel the arm of The Barber. HTM maintains the hold off the tag, delivering more punishment to Beefcake’s arm with a wristlock. Hercules is legal now, still working on the arm, Brutus punches his way out, but Herc hooks the legs and gets Honky Tonk in the match to keep at the arm. Beefcake attempts to strike his way out again, but is not successful. He finally ducks under a right hand and hits an atomic drop, then fires away at the IC Champion. He hits the ropes and Davis with a cheap shot, HTM capitalizes with the Shake, Rattle & Roll to send Brutus packing. Brutus ‘The Barber’ Beefcake has been eliminated.
Savage rushes the ring, he ducks outside and Herc makes a tag, coming in and beating him to the canvas. Davis makes the tag, firing lefts and rights, Macho overpowers him and puts him in the ropes, Honky Tonk tagging in. Into the ropes, Savage ducks a clothesline and tags Roberts, coming in with stinging lefts and rights. He attempts the DDT, HTM slips out and Jake runs into the boots in the corner. Honky hammers away, brings in Herc for more heavy artillery and he covers for numerous 2 counts. Davis comes in with more strikes, distracting the ref for Honky to score a cheap shot, then working over Roberts in the corner. The Snake fires up, absorbing blows and landing a short-arm clothesline. The crowd calls for it and Jake spikes Davis with the DDT for the pinfall. ‘Dangerous’ Danny Davis has been eliminated.
Hercules is in quickly, leveling The Snake with a vicious clothesline and dropping the elbow twice for a count of 2. He contines to pummel Jake, getting him in his corner and double teaming with Honky. Savage comes in illegally to try and help Jake, but when the ref gets Macho back to the apron there’s more double teaming. HTM measures away and drops a fist to Roberts, gaining a count of 2, then going into a rear chinlock. Jake is able to get to a vertical base, driving the elbow to the midsection to break the hold, then hitting the ropes for a kneelift. He crawls toward his corner, but Herc tags in and prevents Jake from getting there, going back to the rear chinlock to wear him out.
The Snake gets to his feet and is able to roll Hercules off, but the big man grabs it again and grounds Jake. Roberts to his feet again, breaking the hold with a jawbreaker and getting the tag to The Dragon. Steamboat is a house of fire, delivering chops to Hercules & HTM. Ricky to the top, bombs away with an overhead chop. He slams Herc, then tags Savage who scales the turnbuckle and hits his patented elbow drop for the 1-2-3. Hercules has been eliminated. Honky Tonk is left all by himself now, Savage unloads with lefts, ramming him in the corner and charging, but HTM moves out of the way. Honky takes the advantage, aggressively clubbing away at Macho. Irish whip, Savage ducks a clothesline and hits a running elbow, making the tag to Steamboat for more punishment.
The Snake’s in now, sending HTM into the ropes and going for a back body drop, Honky tries a sunset flip, but Jake reigns down a right hand. Great teamwork, Savage coming in off the 2nd rope with a double axe handle. He slams Honky Tonk, heads upstairs and comes down with another double axe handle, following with an atomic drop that sends HTM out to the floor. Honky Tonk has had enough and heads for the exit, getting counted out.
Winners & Survivors: ‘Macho Man’ Randy Savage, Ricky ‘The Dragon’ Steamboat & Jake ‘The Snake’ Roberts
- EA’s Take: ‘Macho Man’ is white hot right now, after turning babyface when The Honky Tonk Man proclaimed himself the ‘greatest Intercontinental Champion’ of all-time. Jake Roberts was also still embroiled in a feud with HTM from WrestleMania and Ricky Steamboat was the man that Honky had defeated for the IC Title. Ron Bass had just jumped from the NWA and had a small rivalry with Brutus Beefcake. Brutus continued using ‘The Barber’ moniker after shaving Adrian Adonis’ head at WrestleMania.
Backstage: Broadcast colleague Craig DeGeorge is standing by team captain Andre The Giant and his monstrous squad. Bobby ‘The Brain’ Heenan claims Andre got screwed at WrestleMania when he got a “3 count” on Hulk Hogan. The Giant says he did it once and he will do it again. ‘The Doctor of Style’ Slick talks about how they will be a cohesive unit of ‘animals’ in tonight’s main event. Andre states he’s here for one reason and that’s Hogan’s soul.
Match #2 Survivor Series Elimination Match: WWF Women’s Tag Team Champions The Glamour Girls (Judy Martin & Leilani Kai), Dawn Marie, Donna Christianello & WWF Women’s Champion ‘Sensational’ Sherri w/’Mouth Of The South’ Jimmy Hart vs. Velvet McIntyre, Rockin’ Robin, The Jumping Bomb Angels (Itsuki Yamazaki & Noriyo Tateno) & The Fabulous Moolah
Sherri attacks Velvet and the bell rings, she rams her into the turnbuckles, whips her into the ropes and hits a clothesline. Velvet is whipped in again, ducking a clothesline and hitting a crossbody, then making the tag to Moolah. She prevents Sherri from getting to her corner, proceeding to hammer away. Moolah’s a little overzealous, knocking The Sensational One into her own corner, Christianello making the tag and being brought in the hard way. Moolah with a slingshot, she tags Noriyo who slingshots in the ring with a kick, followed by a dropkick. She goes for another and Christianello avoids it, but Noriyo is too close to her corner and Velvet tags back in.
She irish whips Christianello to the ropes, connecting with a back elbow, a standing dropkick, then a body slam for a count of 2. Christianello fires back, gets flattened by a forearm and then Velvet catches her with a victory roll to pick up the elimination, Donna Christianello has been eliminated. Leilani Kai charges in right after the 3 count, sneak attacking Velvet. She sends her into the corner and rushes at her, Velvet catching her in a headscissors, followed by a dropkick before making the tag to Robin. Leilani drags Robin into the wrong part of town, Dawn Marie tags in and slams Robin to the mat by the hair a couple of times.
Martin off the tag, whips Robin in, Robin ducks a clothesline and lands a crossbody for a near fall, then follows with a dropkick. She attempts a snapmare, Martin hangs on into a roll up for a 2 count, then hits a big boot with Robin coming off the ropes. The champion re-enters the match, hitting a nice running dropkick and then quick tagging Dawn Marie. She sends Robin in and lands a double throat thrust, Robin to her feet and striking back with a clothesline, then a running crossbody to gain a count of 3. Dawn Marie has been eliminated.
Leilani Kai is again quick to rush in right after the 3 count, but she’s a little too aggressive and hammers Robin, sending her into her own corner for Itsuki to tag. Leilani utilizes her size advantage, slamming Itsuki and covering for 2, but Itsuki bridges out. She hops over Leilani and grabs a roll-up, nearly getting 3. Itsuki hits the ropes and jumps into a victory roll for another 2 as Leilani tags out to Martin. Itsuki is still a house of fire, whipping Martin in and landing a couple running knees and a crossbody for a 2 count. Noriyo tags and climbs up top, coming off with an arm drag that sends Martin across the ring into her corner, Sherri making a tag.
Noriyo flips the champion into the ring, sending her in for a back elbow, then a double underhook suplex for a count of 2. Robin comes in now firing away at Sherri and hitting an elbow drop for 2. The Sensational One tags out to Leilani, Robin reverses an irish whip into the corner and hits a monkey flip. Leilani is back up, again using her size to force Robin in the wrong corner and bring Sherri back in, slamming Robin and hitting a suplex for a 3 count. Rockin’ Robin has been eliminated.
Itsuki wastes no time coming in, connecting with multiple running dropkicks, the last one sending Sherri into her corner and Leilani enters the match. She sends Itsuki into the corner, then tosses her by the hair into the canvas. Velvet tagging in, hits the ropes and she counters a tilt-a-whirl attempt into a crossbody for a count of 2. Leilani tags Martin, Velvet bringing her in the hard way and slingshotting her across the ring, then tagging Moolah. The Fabulous One with strikes, a monkey flip and then a dropkick, Martin strikes back and drives Moolah down by the hair. Moolah fights back, taking Martin over into a pinning predicament for 2, then bringing Noriyo into the match.
She gets caught by the hair as soon as she gets in the ring, Martin dragging her into the corner and Leilani tagging, then scaling to the 2nd rope. Noriyo with a shot to the midsection, slamming Leilani down from the 2nd rope, but then missing a dropkick. Leilani whips Noriyo in and connects with a flying double axe handle before tagging the champion, Sherri coming in and driving Noriyo’s head into the mat. Martin tags in, hip tosses Noriyo into the corner, Itsuki tags and gets tossed to the outside, Martin going after Moolah on the apron. Moolah gets pulled into the ring, she hits a dropkick, a clothesline, body slam and then a headlock takeover on Martin.
She grabs the side headlock, Martin pushes her off into the ropes, then uses Leilani on the apron for a double clothesline, makes the cover and gets 3. The Fabulous Moolah has been eliminated. Itsuki jumps Martin, whipping her into the ropes and getting caught with a big boot. Martin tries it again, but this time Itsuki catches the foot and drills her with a big right hand, dragging her to the corner and tagging Noriyo. She starts to work over Martin’s leg, Velvet coming in off the tag to continue the punishment and put Martin in a Boston crab. Velvet switches into a cross leg lock, then going for a surfboard. Back up Velvet, sends Martin in and lands a dropkick, Martin falling into her corner and Sherri tags.
Velvet flips the champion in, but Sherri goes to the midsection and drives Velvet’s face into the mat. She follows with a leg drop and a suplex, tags Leilani who tosses Velvet across the ring into her own corner, Itsuki with the tag. Leilani grabs her and tosses her clear across the ring, then plants her with a double underhook suplex. Itsuki bridges out of a cover, the bell rings inadvertently and Itsuki is able to tag out to Velvet. She gets forced into the wrong part of town, Sherri comes in to try a double team move, Velvet counters and puts the champion in a big swing. She whips Sherri into the corner, reversed, Sherri charges and Velvet hops up on the shoulders, getting a victory roll and pinning the champion. ‘Sensational’ Sherri has been eliminated.
Martin rushes in the ring, clobbering away at Velvet and sending her into her own corner for Itsuki to tag in. They go into the corner and Itsuki comes off the 2nd rope into a sunset flip for a count of 2, following with a rolling headbutt out of an irish whip. Itsuki goes for a slam, Martin keeps blocking and Noriyo tags in, for a double underhook suplex. Martin blocks it once, but not twice, Noriyo covering and getting 2. Martin falls back into her corner, Leilani comes in with a double leg takedown, Noriyo turning it into a body scissors. Leilani gets out with right hands, slingshotting Noriyo across the ring and Velvet tags. She comes in and hits a back elbow, then goes into a roll-up for a count of 2, then hops on Leilani’s shoulders for another victory roll.
Leilani counters, slinging Velvet into the top rope and then back with an electric chair to grab the 3 count. Velvet McIntyre has been eliminated. The Jumping Bomb Angels rush the ring and whip The Glamour Girls into each other, hit simultaneous body slams and then slingshot their opponents onto each other. Order is restored as Noriyo & Leilani stay in the ring, Leilani sending Noriyo into the ropes and Martin with a cheap shot from the apron. Leilani slams Noriyo and heads upstairs, missing a top rope splash. Itsuki tags, climbing to the top and connecting with a crossbody for the 1-2-3. Leilani Kai has been eliminated.
Martin is left all alone, going to work on Itsuki with clubbing blows and driving her head into the canvas. Martin gets Itsuki in a fireman’s carry, lifting her up and planting her face first, she covers and Itsuki gets a foot on the ropes at 1. Into the ropes, Itsuki ducks a clothesline and plants Martin on her backside to the mat, tags Noriyo and then slams Martin. Noriyo to the top, coming down with a knee drop, The Angels send Martin into the ropes and hit a double back body drop as Jimmy Hart gets on the apron. Itsuki dropkicks him to the floor, Noriyo coming off the top with a clothesline to Martin and she picks up the victory.
Winners & Survivors: The Jumping Bomb Angels (Itsuki Yamazaki & Noriyo Tateno)
- EA’s Take: The real standouts of the contest get to be the survivors, as The Jumping Bomb Angels are ahead of their time in terms of American women’s wrestling. Velvet McIntyre is in that category too, as all 3 ladies work a pretty fast pace with some aerial offense. The Glamour Girls and Sherri can hold their own, but everyone else in the match was sloppy at best. The WWF Women’s Tag Team Championships have actually been in existence since 1983, but their shelf life wouldn’t last past the next year, 1988.