WWF Survivor Series 1992 (11/25/1992)- Richfield, OH
Happy (American) Thanksgiving, and welcome to BRM’s Monthly “This Day in Wrestling History” Review Series! Because today is Thanksgiving, what better show to watch than a Survivor Series? Well… maybe a Starrcade, but we just did WCW last month and have already done it twice in the past six months, whereas we haven’t done a WWF show yet this year, so what better show to watch than a Survivor Series? And this year we’ve got quite the doozy for you. It’s Bret Hart defending the WWF World Heavyweight Title against Shawn Michaels… but not that one! This is WWF Survivor Series 1992!
HIGH ENERGY (Owen Hart & Koko B. Ware) vs. THE HEADSHRINKERS (w/Afa)- 5.75/10
This was good for what it was, but it was also one of those matches that reminds you that “high-flyer” means something a lot different in 1992 (and especially in the WWF) than it means nowadays. Owen did dropkicks and crossbodies. The Headshrinkers were the only one who did a move off the top rope.
SEAN MOONEY INTERVIEWS NAILZ- The angle is that the Bossman and his friends used to handcuff Nailz to his bed and savagely beat him. How the hell was Bossman supposed to be the babyface (and that’s leaving aside Nailz’s claim that he was innocent of the crime he was imprisoned for).
GENE OKERLUND INTERVIEWS THE BIG BOSSMAN- bad
Bossman claims that Nailz is lying about being innocent… but never denies beating Nailz in the described way.
NIGHTSTICK ON A POLE MATCH: Nailz vs. the Big Bossman- DUD!
The angle here was a little cartoony on its own, but seeing these guys fight each other in their ring gear that was a prison guard’s uniform and a prisoner’s uniform, took it to a whole new level of cartoonishness. It felt like they were actors wrestling in costumes. It felt like someone tried to do a serious angle on GLOW.
Then there was the actual match, which was short, and full of cartoonish selling from Bossman. In this match we were told that the person who got the nightstick down from the pole would be allowed to use it. Bossman got it down first and used it on Nailz, but then Nailz got it away from him and was allowed to hit him with it, even though he was not the one who got it down.
To get over the importance of getting the nightstick, the announcers told us that getting it down would be such a big advantage that the person who was able to use it would surely win… so, of course, the finish was a Bossman Slam as a reversal, no nightstick involved. Then, after the match, Bossman picked up the nightstick and hit Nailz in the face with it FOR NO GOOD REASON, seemingly proving Nailz’s claims correct!
GENE OKERLUND INTERVIEWS RIC FLAIR & RAZOR RAMON- Before letting the heels speak, they showed us a very long clip from Superstars of Perfect deciding to turn babyface and leave Flair’s camp. Bobby Heenan was, in fact, a tremendous weasel. Razor and Flair were both good… until Flair piped in again at the end, all shaky and crazy and cartoonish-like.
TATANKA vs. RICK MARTEL- 6/10
This match is taking place because Martel stole some of the sacred eagle feathers from Tatanka’s headdress (yes. For those of you who don’t know, Tatanka is a Native American. You can be forgiven for not knowing, though, because they’re always very subtle when talking about it on commentary). I love simple little angles like this.
Doink showed up in the aisle to make balloon animals. Vince had no idea who this person was. If no -one knows who this guy is, how did he get on this side of the guardrail? Where is security? They cut to Doink way too much.
Tatanka overcame the work on his back to win. After the match, he reclaimed his sacred eagle feathers.
POST-MATCH SEGMENT- Doink gave the balloon animals to children, but then popped them. I REALLY hope those children were plants.
SEAN MOONEY INTERVIEWS RANDY SAVAGE & MR. PERFECT- great
Perfect in particular was excellent, but I also really loved Randy responding to Mooney saying that he hadn’t seen Flair and Razor so upset before with “just wait until you see them in a little while” after they lose this match.
RIC FLAIR & RAZOR RAMON vs. RANDY SAVAGE & MR. PERFECT- 6.5/10
They had Perfect wait a while before coming out to tease that maybe this was a trap and perfect was going to screw Savage. I wonder if Flair watched this show back, and that’s where he (in kayfabe) came up with the trap he and the Horsemen would set for Sting at Halloween Havoc 1995?
Savage and Perfect got shined up in the beginning, but once the heat started, Perfect started to walk out on Savage. He got about halfway up the aisle before deciding to come back. Perfect eventually got the hot tag and things heated up. Flair took Savage out with a chairshot, leaving Perfect alone. We got a ref bump to set up Perfect getting a visual pinfall on Razor. This was set up by Perfect countering a Razor’s Edge, which led to the best moment of the night on commentary, with Vince declaring that the Razor’s Edge “backfired perfectly,” and the annoyed Heenan responding with “SHUT UP!”
A second referee eventually came in to make the count but Flair broke it up. The other referee regained consciousness, and they both decided to throw the match out. Vince’s guess seemed to be that the heels were DQed for not obeying the tag rules, while Heenan, of course, assumed that Perfect had submitted. Savage got back in with the chair but Razor took him out and Flair put hi in the Figure Four until Perfect got the chair and made the save. We were told that the official decision was the heels getting DQed. Savage wanted to celebrate with Perfect, but it took Perfec a while to get into it, and we ended with a show of respect between them.
GENE OKERLUND INTERVIEWS RIC FLAIR & RAZOR RAMON- good
They’re upset about being “double-crossed.” Razor hinted that he had murdered the last person that double-crossed him.
VIRGIL vs. YOKOZUNA (w/Mr. Fuji)- no rating, GREAT squash
We’re early enough into Yokozuna’s run that he is still being billed as from “the Polynesian Islands” rather than from Japan. He got a full entrance with woman in traditional robes presenting him with flowers.
I usually don’t like squashes on PPVs, but Virgil was definitely a step up from Yoko’s previous opponents and the match didn’t go very long, so I’m okay with it. They did a great job of getting Yoko over as a monster, doing things like having him stagger but not go down on each of a series of dropkicks from Virgil, and have him squash Virgil when Virgil tried to pick him up.
SEAN MOONEY INTERVIEWS RANDY SAVAGE & MR. PERFECT- bad
Pointless, stupid, Thanksgiving-related insults.
SURVIVOR SERIES FOUR-TEAM ELIMINATION TAG TEAM MATCH: Money Inc. & the Beverly Brothers (w/Jimmy Hart & The Genius) vs. the Nasty Boys & the Natural Disasters- 4/10
The way this match worked is that if one member of a team was eliminated, both members were eliminated. Stuff happened until Earthquake pinned Beau Beverly, leaving the babyfaces with a big advantage. IRS eliminated Typhoon with a school boy, then turned around to celebrated, allowing Sags to roll him up to set up a title match. Fine booking, but a dull match.
They showed us some babyfaces working the “Survivor Series Hotline.”
CASKET MATCH: The Undertaker (w/Paul Bearer) vs. Kamala (w/Kim Chee & Harvey Whippleman)- 3.75/10
This is the blow-off to the famous/infamous “Kamala is afraid of caskets” storyline. Is it cartoony? Yes. But Kamala’s facial expressions and especially his body language are SOOOOOOOOO good that he makes it work.
They hit each other. Undertaker did Old School (which I guess at this point was just “School”). They went to the outside and Kamala cut Taker off and sent him into the stairs and hit him with stuff. They did a lot of staggering around selling instead of going down, which I liked for monster vs. monster. Kamala got the bodyslam, but Taker sat right back up. Kamala chopped him and hit another slam but Taker sat up. Kamala hit another chop and a third slam and Taker started to sit up… but then went back down. I don’t think I’ve ever seen that before. Kamala hit a bunch of splashes.
Kim Chee got the urn from Bearer and tried to give it to Kamala, but Kamala didn’t want it. Taker got his hands on it and hit Kamala with it. They did all of this with Whippleman distracting the referee, even though it’s no DQs, and Kamala had used a chair earlier. Taker then pinned Kamala, and the ref counted it and called for the bell. Apparently this operates like a Texas Deathmatch and you have to pin the opponent first before putting him in the coffin and closing the lid which Taker then did. Then he started to nail the coffin shut, and apparently you needed to do that before winning, too. No wonder Kamala was scared of this match! It wasn’t much more than a year before this that something similar was done to the Ultimate Warrior and we were told he was in moral jeopardy, to the point where Randy Savage, who hated Warrior’s, was on commentary telling us that Taker and Bearer had gone too far.
This was short and not very good, but I will at least credit them by saying that it was more enjoyable than I was expecting it to be.
SEAN MOONEY INTERVIEWS SHAWN MICHAELS- very good
Shawn was also the IC Title at this time. He noted that he won the belt from British Bulldog, who had won the belt from Bret Hart, and therefore Shawn would be able to beat Bret for the WWF World Heavyweight Title tonight.
GENE OKERLUND INTERVIEWS BRET HART- Good, other than the fact that he said Shawn’s name an unusually large number of times. He was dropping Shawn’s name at least every other sentence.
WWF WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE MATCH: Bret Hart(c) vs. Shawn Michaels- 7.5/10
Vince wondered if Shawn would have to forfeit the IC Title if he won the world title tonight. Shouldn’t that have been figured out in advance?
This is one of those matches that doesn’t quite hold up as well. I’m sure it was impressive in 1992, and they worked hard and sold well, but the pacing felt a little to slow for the high-energy match they seemed to be going for, and they spent time working over so many different body parts that the story felt like a big jumble. The finish saw Shawn go to the top for a missile dropkick but Bret caught his legs and turned him over into the Sharpshooter… at which point referee Earl Hebner called for the bell even though Shawn did not tap out.
Yeah, yeah. I know. Tapping out wasn’t a thing yet. It’s still amusing to note, though.
POST-MATCH SEGMENT- odd
Bret Hart celebrated with the title, and was joined in his celebration by that beloved Thanksgiving character… Santa Claus?
This was just a bad show. Yes, 1992 was a different time, but this show was just bad. Bad and boring. Soooooo boring. For next month, I’m going to pick something that seems can’t miss.
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