The SmarK Rant for WWF Survivor Series 1994
Live from San Antonio, TX
Your hosts are Vince McMahon & Gorilla Monsoon
The Teamsters (Diesel, Shawn Michaels, Owen Hart, Jim Neidhart & Jeff Jarrett) v. The Bad Guys (Razor Ramon, 1-2-3 Kid, British Bulldog, Fatu & Sionne)
Well, the Teamsters ARE known for their laziness and greed, so it would fit that Nash would be captaining this team. Interesting that only the team captains get entrance music this year. The storyline was more that Shawn and Diesel were having a domestic squabble as tag champions than any real issue between Ramon and Diesel. Kind of weird what a non-issue Ramon was even though he was IC champion for another three months after this. Owen starts with the Kid while Fatu is forced into wearing boots by THE MAN, and this is apparently an issue for him. Kid fights off both Harts but runs into an Anvil elbow in a weird spot, allowing the heels to take over. Kid spinkicks JJ out of the ring (giving us our first “right in the mush” of the evening) and Barbarian comes in with a press slam. Jarrett comes back with a flying clothesline for two. Next up, it’s Owen v. Bulldog and they do the cool wristlock sequence, leading to Owen getting pummelled in the face corner and slammed. Bulldog with a sunset flip for two, but Owen lays him out with the enzuigiri and the New Foundation tries some double-teaming. That backfires because Neidhart is useless, and Fatu comes in but has trouble with his footwear. What a stupid storyline that was. And really, wasn’t there ANY other Samoans available to replace Samu? They just had to give Barbarian another payday? Just use Fatu’s brother! Jarrett grabs a headlock on Ramon and quickly gets tossed for his troubles, and back in he gets double-teamed by Ramon & Kid. Razor tosses the Kid at him for a bodypress that gets two, but Jarrett comes back with an abdominal stretch to slow things down. Kid reverses, so Jarrett hiptosses him over the top rope in a cool spot missed by the camera. Back in with Fatu, who still can’t get his shit together, and Owen gets a leg lariat for two. Fatu comes back, finally acting like a human being months into his babyface run, but Diesel comes in and finishes him with the powerbomb at 13:30. Kid tries next and flies in with a sunset flip off the top, but Diesel casually shrugs him off and another Poochiebomb ends the night at 14:14. Sionne in next and he slugs away, but he walks into ANOTHER powerbomb at 14:45. Bulldog comes in and gets booted to the floor and apparently gets counted out at 16:00. Razor tries a cradle on Diesel for two and the flying bulldog for two, but Diesel puts him down with a clothesline and now Shawn finally wants into the match. He had a legit broken hand at the time, which explains his not factoring into the match thus far. Razor keeps fighting against Diesel and manages to slam him, but can’t get the Razor’s Edge. Diesel finally gets the powerbomb and Shawn tags himself in for the big finish, but then demands that Diesel hold Ramon steady for the fateful superkick. And of course Ramon moves and Diesel eats it. And now he’s had ENOUGH and turns babyface, fighting off his own team members and chasing Shawn back to the dressing room, giving Ramon the countout win over all five heels at 21:26. Survivor: Razor Ramon. Good action before the rapid-fire eliminations and storyline kicked in and killed the match dead, but man what a stupid finish. And really none of the match went anywhere. **1/4
Meanwhile, Shawn leaves the arena, dumps Diesel, and tosses the tag team titles on the ground on the way out. Hopefully he’ll have better luck with his next bodyguard!
MIDGET MADNESS: The Royal Family (Jerry Lawler, Cheezy, Queezy & Sleazy) v. Clowns R Us (Doink, Dink, Wink, Pink)
No midgets mixing with normals allowed in this match, which is how it should be. Doink quickly gets a clownzuigiri on Lawler, but Lawler’s attempt fails. And we get some midget comedy with everyone running over him on the mat. Doink with some slams and the clown midgets all try to pin Lawler with no luck. Lawler actually sells getting a Burger King crown put on his head and we get an attempt at a chicken fight that goes badly. Finally Lawler uses his old standby, the phantom object, to take over. Really, that’s a heel tactic that no one does anymore and it’s ridiculously easy heat. Pantomime a foreign object in your hand, get a cheapshot with it, hide the “object” in your tights. Doink makes a quick comeback, but a bodypress is rolled through by Lawler for the pin at 10:45. So basically Lawler is eliminated as well. The clown midgets double-team Cheezy in the corner, but Wink gets caught in the heel side and Lawler holds him down for a pin at 13:32. Pink comes in and Lawler drops Cheezy onto him for the pin at 14:33. So Dink is alone and he holds his own and gets a flying bodypress for two on Sleazy, but they roll him over for the pin at 16:00 to finish this off. Survivors: Jerry Lawler and his pet midgets. Jerry Lawler is so proud of himself that he fires his own midgets, resulting in a 6-on-1 midget revolt against him. Never trust a midget! This was as horrible as you could imagine.
WWF title, submission match: Bret Hart v. Mr. Bob Backlund
Bob runs away a few times to start, but Bret grabs a headlock and goes to work on the neck. Going back and reading the Observers from this time and it’s hilarious how much Meltzer hated Backlund at the time. I mean, he just buried the guy every chance he got. He summed up Backlund even getting to his point as “a cute idea gone haywire” and noted that they were trying to appeal to completely the wrong audience with it. So Bret works on a headlock while we get a shot of Bret’s she-devil wife Julie, and Bret reverses a crossface attempt into a suplex. Back to the headlock, but Bret misses the middle rope elbow and Bob takes over. Bret goes after Owen and nearly gets crossfaced, but fights it off and Bob goes to work on the arm. This gives me the chance to think about the changes in wrestling over the years and how long people stick around. Bob’s original reign ended in 1983 and this was 1994, 11 years after that. Those were like two different worlds and Backlund was some sort of bizarre time-traveller from the past when he did this comeback run. But think about today’s business, and how many guys from 11 years ago are still around and still in the same position. Rock was already winding his career down in 2003 and he just came back and won the WWE title again last year! Hell, the last time I did a review of this show was 15 years ago! No wonder the business is so stale. Anyway, Bret goes to a figure-four now, but Owen walks away from his towel just in case he’s tempted to use it. Backlund reverses the hold and then gets to the ropes to force a break, so Bret goes back to the leg again. They slug it out and Bob gets a piledriver, but can’t get the crossface. Bret comes back with his own piledriver and a bulldog and it’s the FIVE MOVES OF DOOM, but Bulldog chases Owen around during the Sharpshooter, allowing Owen to sneak in and break the hold. Bulldog stupidly charges on the floor and hits the stairs, knocking himself unconscious and thus removing the possibility of throwing in the towel. Bob finally gets his crossface and the crowd is freaking out, although Davey Boy may be legally dead at this point and no one seems to care. So Bret is in the hold for NINE MINUTES, which gives me time to go make popcorn and feed my cat, while Owen has a babyface turn at ringside and tearfully talks Stu and Helen into throwing in the towel on Davey’s behalf. Meanwhile, Davey still hasn’t moved and probably has a fractured skull or something. Finally, Helen caves into Owen’s tears and throws in the towel, giving Backlund the WWF title again at 35:20. Backlund of course wouldn’t even make it to the next episode of Monday Night RAW with the belt. The final 10 minutes were some cool mindgames on Owen’s part, but there was just too much nothing leading up to it. AND WHAT ABOUT BULLDOG?! **1/2
The Million Dollar Team (Tatanka, Bam Bam Bigelow, King Kong Bundy & The Heavenly Bodies) v. Guts & Glory (Lex Luger, Adam Bomb, Mabel & The Smoking Gunns)
Tatanka throws chops on Luger to start and gets a suplex, but Lex no-sells all of it and comes back with clotheslines. Mabel tosses Dr. Tom around and flattens him with a bodypress at 4:08. Del Ray comes in and walks into the Bossman slam, so we get the Bundy v. Mabel showdown. That goes nowhere and it’ Mabel v. Bam Bam, and Mabel “hits” a leg lariat that misses by 2 feet and goes up. Bigelow slams him off in an impressive spot and goes up with a sunset flip, but Mabel sits on him and they both go tumbling to the floor for countout of Mabel at 7:30. Del Ray superkicks Billy Gunn for two, but a backslide gets two. Adam Bomb comes in and hits the slingshot clothesline on Bigelow, but Bundy gets a cheapshot and the Lunasault finishes at 9:19. Del Ray works Luger over, but walks into the STAINLESS STEEL FOREARM OF DOOM and gets pinned at 11:10. The Gunns double-team Tatanka, but he knocks off Bart with the Papoose To Go at 15:00. Luger and Billy work Tatanka over, but Bundy comes in and drops an elbow on Billy to finish him at 17:40. So Luger is alone 3-on-1, the world’s greatest choke artist against the most useless heel stable ever. The heels work Luger over forever, but Luger cradles Tatanka for the pin at 23:32 before Bundy splashes and pins him at 23:40. Survivors: Bam Bam Bigelow & King Kong Bundy. Pretty dull stuff. **1/2
Meanwhile, Mr. Bob Backlund FEELS LIKE GOD.
Casket Match: Undertaker v. Yokozuna
Your special referee is Chuck Norris, long before he became an internet meme. Taker chases Yoko around the ring and goes old school, but walks into the samoan drop. Yoko tries for the casket, but Taker necksnaps him to escape. Yoko comes back with a legdrop and they fight into the casket, but that goes nowhere. Yoko tosses him and takes over with some choking, but Taker goes up with the flying clothesline and that seems to be it for Yoko. The heels start coming out to re-enact Royal Rumble 94, but they didn’t count on CHUCK NORRIS being there this time. This still gives IRS time to run in and put Taker in a sleeper and into the casket, but Undertaker arises and he’s pissed. Clothesline and big boot puts Yoko in the casket, and Taker slams the lid shut at 15:24 to avenge himself. It was what it was. *
I know this tends to be a polarizing show to say the least. I just found it really, really dull tonight and had no real connection to any of the elimination tag matches. Your overall enjoyment will probably depend on what you get out of the Bret v. Backlund title match, so for me it’s a thumbs in the middle show.
Tags: Bret Hart v. Bob Backlund, Chuck Norris, Diesel & Shawn Michaels, Survivor Series 1994, WWE Network, WWF