WWF Summerslam 1989
FEEL THE HEAT. Fuck yes, Tony Schiavone and Jesse Ventura are calling the show.
Hart Foundation vs Brain Busters
Holy shit, what an opening match. Arn and Tully are the tag champs, but because they weren't when the match was signed, this match is non-title. Bret and Tully begin. This is great for both guys to be calling, as Jesse has the experience with the Harts and is a huge fan of theirs even as faces, and Tony of course had been calling Arn/Tully matches for years at this point. The Hart Foundation are playing all the Southern heel team tricks on Arn, which is great. There's even some JCP style camera work in this. Harts have completely dominated this match. A real clinic from the Foundation, who are a step ahead at every...step. The Horsemen finally get into the match when they bait Anvil into missing a splash in the corner. Tully accidentally pushes Anvil into the hot tag. Anvil powerslams Bret onto Tully. Brain distracts the ref, Arn comes off the ropes with an ax handle, and steals the pin as the illegal man by covering his head. This was so enjoyable. Like a great weekend drive. Just a nice drive through the country.
TO THE MEAN GENE. DUSTY RHODES, daddeh! Too bad he has to face Honky Tonk Man. Dusty rambles crazy Dusty shit.
Honky Tonk Man vs Dusty Rhodes
I love Dusty and all, but hopefully this is very short. Obviously, Dusty out dances HTM. Jimmy accidentally hits HTM with the guitar. Bionic elbow gets the win. Sean Mooney caught up with HTM on the way out. He was concussed and confused.
TO THE MEAN GENE. Gene is with Demolition and Hacksaw. Duggan has a Demolition mask.
Mr. Perfect vs Red Rooster
Perfect is wearing the singlet he wore in his first Nitro match. It fits a little better here than it did in 1997. Taylor slaps the shit out of Perfect for doing a chicken dance. Weird thing of Rooster going to slam Perfect, but his knee buckling or something, and it ended up being some proto Northern lights bomb kind of thing. Not sure what happened. He seems hurt, as he's moving very gingerly and the match wraps up shortly after with a Perfect Plex.
TO THE MEAN GENE. Rick Rude and Bobby Heenan are the guests. Ultimate Warrior has promised to regain the IC Championship tonight. Promises are made to be broken.
Rockers/Tito Santana vs Fabulous Rougeau Brothers/Rick Martel
All these French Canadians. Disgusting. Also disgusting is Ray's mullet. It is aggressive. There is double and triple teaming from the faces 10 seconds in. Dirty cheaters. Marty eats a hard superkick right in the sternum. Martel does everything he can to avoid Tito. He don't want none. Tito ends up as the FIP. Man, Tony is SO excited to call this show. It's wonderful. Crowd really loves Tito. I wish Ray had been the Mountie. He's much better than his brother. HBK gets the hot tag, crowd goes banana. The match breaks down with all 6 in the ring, plus the managers fucking around, and somehow Martel steals the win from Marty.
Tony narrates a package of the history of Rude/Warrior.
TO THE MEAN GENE. Warrior is ranting and raving. Something about straight jackets and rubber rooms and eating Andre The Giant.
Rick Rude vs Ultimate Warrior WWF Intercontinental Championship
Rude's kicks and punches have zero effect on Warrior. Oh shit, press slam to the floor! And a suplex on the floor. Warrior ain't fucking around tonight. And a slam on the floor. Poor Rude. Rough night for him. Warrior just dominating here. Then Brain distracts him as he's going up top. What a dummy. Rude focuses on the lower back of Warrior, which IMO is the best spot to work on a muscle dude. Nothing will fuck your world up like a lower back injury. Warrior powers out of the Rude Awakening. There is a ref bump. He's down for an absurdly long time. He comes to to count the pin on a Warrior piledriver, but Rude had his foot on the ropes. Rude sets up for a piledriver, but then hits a fucking GANSO BOMB. DANGEROUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUS! Roddy Piper randomly walks out to ringside. Rude swivels his hips at him. Piper then moons him, revealing that he wears only a jock strap under his kilt. That's...weird. Also the whole thing is very homoerotic, even by pro wrestling standards, which is extremely homoerotic by default. The distraction of Piper's asshole allows Warrior to recover and hit the press slam and splash for the win. New champion!
TO THE MEAN GENE. Gene speaks with Mr. Perfect, who talks about his win earlier in the night. Then Roddy Piper comes in, talking about Pete Rose and Voyager 3. THEN Ronnie Garvin walks in wearing a tux. He has a special assignment tonight. THEN Bobby Heenan and Rick Rude storm in complaining about Piper. What an interesting segment. I don't recall WWF ever doing a revolving door promo segment like this.
Twin Towers/Andre The Giant vs Demolition/Jim Duggan
A lot of beef in this match. Poor Andre. He's trying so hard, though. Not only did Duggan wear a Demolition mask, but he has USA flag face paint on underneath. Imagine you're Andre. You've been doing this shit since the early 60s. You're a literal giant, and you can't even walk without being in agony. And in the twilight of your career, you're stuck with working with Jim Duggan. What a miserable end to your career/life. There's a lot of random brawling in this. Demolition are super over as faces. Duggan hits Akeem with the 2x4, and Smash pins him. God damn cheaters.
TO THE MEAN GENE. Ted DiBiase and Virgil are with Gene. Ted has a match with Jimmy Snuka coming up. It is a very racist promo.
Hercules vs Greg Valentine
Ronnie Garven is the special guest ring announcer, and he shits all over Hammer and Jimmy Hart. More guys Tony is very familiar with. At this point, I think Tony Schiavone might be my favorite play by play guy. Love that dude. Hammer wins with his feet on the ropes in pretty short order. Garvin announces Herc as the winner. Hammer attacks Garvin.
TO THE MEAN GENE. Macho and ZEUS are with Gnee. Sherri has a god damn cauldron. OF MENACE. This is amazing.
Ted DiBiase vs Jimmy Snuka
Ted tries to attack from behind, but Snuka saw that shit coming. And then he saw Ted attacking from behind when he was tied up with Virgil. Does Snuka have eyes in the back of his head? Perhaps he was just watching the screens. Snuka tries his leap frog spot and the whole thing goes to shit. I don't know whose fault it was, but it was a mess. Snuka was so clearly juiced out of his mind during this period. He was in his mid 40s at this point, yet bigger than ever. The big lump on Snuka's spine is weirding me the fuck out. Snuka and Virgil get into it. It got Snuka counted out. Impressive win for Ted. Virgil got hit with the Superfly Splash after the match.
TO THE MEAN BROTHERJACKDUDE. Hogan and Brutus Beefcake get crazy. These two have been hanging and banging for a while now, dude. Now Hulk is rambling about the Hudson River. He's also rambling about packages on his back and secret weapons.
Randy Savage/Zeus vs Hulk Hogan/Brutus Beefcake
The Genius gets to do an intro for this. The whole heel team is in black and silver, which is a nice touch, since Hogan and Beefcake aren't matching at all. Jesse calls Liz a "little tramp". He assumed she was the secret weapon, but she's nowhere to be found. She gets her own entrance. To Macho's music. The entire Zeus storyline is so weird. Where it was acknowledged that Hogan/Zeus were making a movie, but Zeus got mad on set and came into the WWF to get his revenge. As his movie character. And there was at least one angle where Kurt Fuller showed up in character as Brell. Even though they acknowledged everyone was an actor for a movie. Zeus no sells everything Hogan does. Obviously, Hogan and Savage wrestle most of the match. Zeus isn't even a wrestler, and Brutus sucks. 100% of Zeus' moves are chokes. If his finisher was the Tongan death grip, I'd understand. It's actually fascinating that they booked this match to go nearly 30 minutes when one of the guys involved wasn't even a trained wrestler. Hulk, of course, no sells Macho's elbow. He didn't even Hulk up. He just stood up and flexed, then started fighting Zeus. Hulk pins Zeus with the legdrop. After the match. Hulk atomic drops Sherri, and then Liz hits Sherri. And THEN Brutus cuts Sherri's hair. Rude as fuck.
This was a fun show. Hart Foundation vs Arn/Tully could have gone on for 3 hours. Just a great pro wrestling match. Warrior/Rude was good. Main event was what it was, but Jesse and Tony calling the action made everything better.