I will be reviewing various Saturday Night Main Event's on an irregular basis. While I have most, I'm pretty sure I don't have every SNME, so because of that, I will be reviewing them out of order.
Saturday Night Main Event # 20
March 11th, 1989
Vince McMahon and Jesse Ventura
This was the last major stop before heading to Atlantic City for Wrestlemania 5. The major theme for the night was "Decision of a Lifetime." That decision was Miss Elizabeth's and whose corner she would be in for WM 5, Hulk or Savage. The rest of the night was full of wrestlers trying to gain some momentuem going into Wrestlemania.
Rick Rude w/ Bobby Heenan vs Brutus 'The Barber' Beefcake
Pre-match saw Rude and Heenan telling Mean Gene that this match came about because they're sick of Beefcake making the entire WWF ugly with his haircuts. The match started with a collar elbow tieup with Brutus getting the advantage.
He goes for a pair of punches in the corner, but the second time Rude stops him hits a reverse atomic drop. Rude locks in a headlock for a long time, meanwhile; Andre The Giant comes out. Barber hits his own reverse atomic drop on Rude. Brutus is thrown outside the ring, while the ref is distracted by Rude, Andre sits on and chokes Brutus. Out comes Jake Roberts with Damien.
Rude jumps him though. Andre chokes Jake, but Big John Studd comes down and has a standoff with his former enemy. Jake grabs Damien and throws him in the ring and Andre runs out. Decent short match with Rude selling well. Helps add more to the story of Andre and Jake while Studd would end up the guest referee for the Wrestlemania match. Six Minutes. Two Stars.
Hulk Hogan w/ Miss Elizabeth vs Bad News Brown
It seems as if Bad News Brown had been spreading rumors that Miss Elizabeth was doing "Favors" (Ah, the wholesome days) for President Jack Tunney to help her men out. Since Savage wasn't doing anything about it, Hogan would.
Bad News was a legit badass and one time actually called Andre the Giant out for a fight if he didn't shut his mouth. Andre apoligized. Typical Hogan ending for a match, but the match was a bit different from his norm. Midway through the match, Bad News went to the back and came out with a snow shovel. So cheesy, but I love it.
Hogan hits the big boot, but doesn't go for the cover. He then pulls Bad News to the corner and rams his head to the turnbuckle. But if Pro Wrestling 101 taught you anything, African Americans and Islanders have very thick heads so Bad News no sells it.
Hogan takes a lot of offense until Bad News gets on the mic to tell Hogan what he's going to do (His move, the Ghettoblaster). Big surprise, Hogan ducks. Due to the different ring style of Bad News, this was above average Hogan match. Normally, his TV matches are paint by numbers, this one did things a bit differently. Post match saw Hogan and Elizabeth posing to the crowd. Nine Minutes. Three Stars.
Ted Dibiase w/ Virgil vs The Blue Blazer
Pre-match has an interview with the Blue Blazer. He says he's going to take to the air, whether that means from the top rope, turnbuckle, or the rafters. A very eerie comment looking back. As for Dibiase, this is the first night he's showing off his brand new Million Dollar Championship.
From what I hear it's currently in safe keeping in Stamford. Dibiase jumps Blazer after his trademark backflip into the ring. Blazer doesn't even have time to take off his cape and he's being punched and closelined. Blazer makes his comeback and hits a nice suicide dive through the ropes to Dibiase on the outside.
Back in the ring, Blazer connects with a crossbody from the top rope. Dibiase though catches and hits Blazer with a powerslam. It's a very short match, which is a shame because had they been given more time, even just 5 more minutes they could have put on a great match. Four Minutes. Three Stars.
Miss Elizabeth makes her decision
We head over to the WWF interview stage, which I would love to see the WWE bring back. Mean Gene is with Elizabeth and he sums up Liz's choices, either be in the corner of Hogan or Savage at Wrestlemania.
Elizabeth talks about how hard of decision that has been and that she never thought she'd ever have to make it. Finally, Gene asks Elizabeth if she will be in Hogan's corner. She slowly admits that she won't be. Savage runs out excited that Liz chooses him. Gene, just for confirmation asks Liz if she will be in Savage's corner. She once again replies, "No."
Savage gets upset and tries to pressure her, which brings out Hogan. Liz stands between them like she has been for the year. Segment ends with answers that only brings on more questions.
The Brain Busters w/ Bobby Heenan vs The Rockers
Pre-match interview with the Heenan Family has Arn saying that Bobby is the mind, Tully is the speed and that he's the power, a perfect combination. The Rockers then has an interview, but I'm distracted by Marty and Shawn rubbing their hands every five seconds.
Cut to the ring and The Busters jump The Rockers before the bell. Arn and Shawn fights outside the ring while Tully tries to hit a slingshot suplex on Marty. Marty reverses it and Shawn jumps from the top rope and gets a two count on Tully. The Rockers continue to use double team moves for the next couple minutes.
Finally, once the referee gets only two men in the ring, The Rockers stay in control. Shawn runs the ropes, only to have The Brain pull the top rope down and Michaels falls out of the ring. Bobby gets in a few kicks to the down Michaels, before the referee throws him out of ringside. Once they come back from commercial, but Brainbusters are in control against Marty. Arn and Tully shows that they were one of the best tag teams ever with a lot of quick tags, most of which came without Marty seeing them.
They continue to build towards the hot tag, which finally happens with Shawn coming in and taking out both Busters. Arn and Tully rolls out of the ring while continuing to attack Marty, but Shawn flies out of the ring between the ropes to hit the former Horsemen. All four men fights outside until the referee counts to five.
A cop out ending, but it left open a lot of room for a feud. I'm not really sure why these two teams didn't wrestle each other at Wrestlemania. I can't recall any sort of buildup between their WM opponents (Twin Towers and Strike Force). This was probably the match of the night and felt like it could of been an opening match for the early PPVs. Nine Minutes. Three Stars.
The Brooklyn Brawler w/ Bobby Heenan vs The Red Rooster
Pre-match interview has Heenan calling Rooster a nobody, but he builds up the Brawler by saying he's a bigger and better nobody than the Rooster ever was. Meanwhile, Rooster says that he is a somebody, he's the Red Rooster. I'm not sure whether that was supposed to be a joke or not.
On to the match, Brawler starts off with some punches, a knee and raking of the face. Rooster fights back, but is Irish whipped into the ropes with Brawler setting him up for a back body drop. Taylor instead rolls Brawler up for a small package and gets the three count.
Post match sees Heenan distracting Rooster by getting in the ring, but Brawler runs back in the ring and hits a Northern Lariat on Rooster. Heenan and the famous jobber continues to beat down on Rooster until Taylor makes his comeback and sends Brawler out of the ring, Heenan escapes. Not much of a match, but it helps builds towards Wrestlemania. I do have to question the WWF's choice in booking Booby vs Rooster at Wrestlemania though.
Heenan was always a great person to book in a match, however; Rooster was never over in the WWF. It seems like such a mistake booking one of your top heels (Which Bobby was) against someone the people could give a shit about. Two Minutes. One Star.
The show ends with Savage screaming he's still the champion and destroying things in the back and a special recap video of the destruction of the Mega Powers.
For just one hour, the WWF did a lot to build up Wrestlemania. I would of liked to hear a little more talk about Warrior vs Rude, but they at least had Rude wrestle. There was two really good short matches in Dibiase vs Blazer and Brain Busters vs Rockers.
I really wished the WWE would book the modern SNME's like these old ones. It was a good blend of normal weekly action, but making it appear more important than shows like The Wrestling Challenge and Superstars of Wrestling.
The Brain Busters vs The Rockers
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