Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Old School Wrestling Review: SummerSlam 1990

It’s been a little while since I watched SummerSlam 1990, but I have a lot of notes on it, so I’ll be reviewing this one off of my notes. This was the first Pay Per View we’ve watched since we started going through the old school shows where Jessie Ventura wasn’t on color commentary and I have to say, right away I missed him.

We’ll get right into it with the first match.

Power and Glory (Paul Roma and Hercules) (with Slick) vs. The Rockers (Shawn Michaels and Marty Jannetty)

Shawn gets attacked by Hercules in the knee prior to the match so he can’t wrestle the event, or so the storyline goes. In actuality, Shawn has to have knee surgery, so it becomes a handicapped match where Jannetty has to wrestle the whole match himself. He does a great job, all things considering. I personally think Hercules does a better job as a good guy, putting over the mid cards, but meh. Even though Power and Glory won, Jannetty gave a good match, so it keeps the Rockers’ momentum going, and gives Shawn an excuse to get his surgery done.

The Texas Tornado vs. Mr. Perfect (the Intercontinental Champion) (with Bobby Heenan)

The Texas Tornado, who I hadn’t seen before, is one of the Von Erich’s. They are a very famous wrestling family who were struck with a lot of tragedy. This one, Kerry Von Erich, wrestled with only one foot, the other is a prosthetic. If I hadn’t been told that, I would not have noticed. I know he’s a great wrestler from a wrestling family, but I have no history with him, so I’m rooting for Mr. Perfect.

Unfortunately, just like the last pay per view, Perfect gets stuck in a losing match. At first I thought the match was going great. Then at the end, once again Perfect gets slammed into the ring post, then Tornado hits his finishing moves and the match is over. It bites that Perfect keeps wrestling and losing at the main shows, it makes his gimmick not work and Perfect deserves more.

Sensational Queen Sherri vs. Sapphire

Sherri comes out in this insanely glittery outfit, she looks like a cat who ate a pound of silver paint, it’s crazy! Sapphire doesn’t show up and Sherri wins by forfeit. I knew that Sherri wasn’t going to wrestle in that outfit, she looked like some cat demon with the way she was prowling around the ring. It was terrible and awesomely over the top.

The Warlord (with Slick) vs. Tito Santana

Warlord is boring and slow. There, that’s the match. Tito tried. Oh goodness he tried to make the match interesting, but Warlord was not having any of it. Warlord won. Forgettable match. At least Piper’s commentary was funny.

The Hart Foundation (Bret Hart and Jim Neidhart) vs. Demolition (Smash and Crush) (Tag Team Champions)

The Hart Foundation finally has their entrance gear and got a true promo! This is a two out of three falls match, the first one I think I’ve really seen all the way through. The first fall went to Demolition. But, for a few moments before the fall, it really seemed like Bret would get the first fall. Exciting!

The second fall went to the Foundation because of a disqualification as Demolition hit the referee. Bret is hurt, so the third member of Demolition sneaks under the ring. The match really starts to heat up. Demolition starts switching up with their third member under the ring for a fresh guy, being good heels and all. The Legion of Doom comes out to help the Hart Foundation and it allows the Foundation to get the win in the confusion. It was an awesome match! Crazy, and one of the best tag team matches I’ve seen thus far. I really liked seeing a two out of three falls match and one with the third member under the ring, it really made the heels stand out as being truly bad guys and made the match have an extra level of excitement.

Jake Roberts vs. Bad News Brown with Big Boss Man as the special guest referee

Promo -
The promo for this match was a bit of a fumble because Damien, Jake Robert’s snake, kept misbehaving and getting his coils in the way. It was kinda funny and cute. There was also this “Harlam Sewer Rat” angle and it was really stupid. I’m never going to believe they lugged out 200 pounds of sewer rats to ring side. Nope. Sorry.

Match -
The match was bad. Bad News is a good heel but he’s not a good wrestler. Jake pulls most of the weight during the match, but it’s a good thing the match is so short. If it wasn’t short, I would have been frustrated with the match. Jake won so he got to take out Damien. Good, I didn’t want to see the stupid “sewer rats.”

On a side note. I’m always impressed with how well Jake handles Damien, considering he doesn’t like snakes. I can tell Jake is very smart and analytical by just how he handles Damien so matter of factly. He doesn’t let himself get bothered by the creature he hates, he just closes that part of him away and deals with it like it’s some continuation of ring psychology or something. It’s fascinating, in a way.

Brother Love and the reappearance of Sgt. Slaughter

This is exactly like the current day Zeb Colter, declaring war on non-Americans and so on, or all the other very controversial political commentating segment. Remember JBL and the border patrol? I remember hearing about that segment. Anyway, these kinds of segments are all over wrestling. Politics through wrestling is important, it gives people a forum to get their opinions out without needing to resort to true anger. You can get mad at Brother Love instead of getting mad at your actual brother who just might happen to think a little bit like Brother Love. But I digress.

Nikolai Volkoff and Jim Duggan vs. The Orient Express (Tanaka and Sato) (with Mr. Fuji)

Hacksaw is so pro-American and this is a political match. With the first Bush war going on, it’s pretty crazy with all the Middle East stuff going on. This is almost a way for people to get out some of their feelings in a healthy and mature way. Duggan even does some football moves. It’s a way to be patriotic without being to the extreme that Brother Love took it. They showed through the Brother Love segment how it could go too far, and Duggan kind of showed how to do it a little better, I suppose. I might be thinking too far into it all. Obviously Volkoff and Duggan win the match. Politics and all.

Randy Savage (with Sensational Queen Sherri) vs. Dusty Rhodes

This match starts out with the Million Dollar Man Ted DiBiase bringing out Sapphire with a ton of money. Quite the lesson to the kids, money can buy your woman from you, Dusty Rhodes. The match itself was quick and Sherri’s purse makes another appearance. Macho Man has another great match and another win, even if he was just used to further the plot of Rhodes vs. DiBiase.

Hulk Hogan (with The Big Boss Man) vs. Earthquake (with Jimmy Hart and Dino Bravo)

It’s been so nice not having all Hogan promos and instead having Rhodes promos up until now. Earthquake seems so silly so I can’t take the feud seriously in the slightest. Both Hogan and Earthquake are gassed after two moves so the match is in slow motion. At some part Hogan starts ripping off part of the referee’s shirt while he was in a hug hold? What in the heck Hogan? It doesn’t make any sense. Of course Hogan kicks out after two of Earthquake’s finishers and does Hogan’s patented punch, boot, slam, leg drop on Earthquake. Outside of the ring, Hogan manages to do a bodyslam on Earthquake and all hell breaks loose and Hogan does his whole “Oh shoot, I took down the Earthquake after being finished, brother, brother, brother!” shocked look.

Anyway, Earthquake gets disqualified so Hogan can win, blah blah. Sure, Hogan doesn’t get a pin, per se, but he made sure he comes out the strong looking guy and gets to do his 45 minutes of posing. At that point in the show I’m missing Jessie Ventura’s commentary and wanting Warrior to come out.

Finally the Main Event! 3000 pounds of steel cage!

The Ultimate Warrior (WWF Champion) vs. Rick Rude (with Bobby Heenan)

They actually show how they put the cage together during the show, so if you want to see how they put one together in 8-10 minutes, watch this one. It’s pretty cool. The gaffers have it down to an art.

Promo -
Warrior’s promo is brilliant! The Declaration of Independence reworded to be the Declaration of INSANITY! He blew Hogan’s promo out of the water. Ha! Warrior comes out and immediately puts the cage construction to the test by bouncing on it.

Match - 
The match is far better than the Hogan one. The characters are livelier, the match doesn’t drag on. Though some segments are slow, mostly it’s only because it’s a steel cage match and recovery time is inevitable. The whole thing is fun. Warrior has a lot more energy than I expected, though he’s no Bret Hart or Randy Savage. He knows enough to hold his own, which I wasn’t expecting given what’s all been said about him.

This match is the last hurrah for Rick Rude as he was leaving for WCW. It is a great send off for him. I’ll miss his matches and his feud with Warrior has been so much fun, including the ridiculous “pose-down” that was so funny. I’m glad Warrior won the match, but I’m glad it was Rick Rude in the main event with him.

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