WWF Prime Time Wrestling - December 25, 1989
by Scrooge McSuck
Note: I reviewed this way back when it first aired on WWE 24/7, but that review was so half-assed, I finally caved in and popped it into the old player for a real go-around this time.
- Your hosts for tonight are Gorilla Monsoon, Bobby Heenan, and over in a secondary studio, Hotrod, Rowdy Roddy Piper. According to Piper, Santa Claus is going to be on the show, thanks to a bet from the previous week. It turns out to be Bobby Heenan all dressed up. In the center of the Primetime Studio is a poster hyping No Holds Barred: The Match/The Movie, a PPV I'm sure everyone forgets was put on. Piper goads Heenan into getting into Holiday spirit, or pay up the money he owes.
- The Ultimate Warrior (IC Champion) vs. Brian Costello:
We've got Tony Schiavone and Lord Alfred Hayes calling the action, so I'm guessing this is a Primetime Squash Exclusive, or they just decided to add new commentary. Costello attacks with a series of axehandles, but Warrior REALLY no-sells it and whips him to the corner. Warrior looks under the ring for his stash, ignoring any offense Costello tries mounting. Warrior no-sells a clothesline. Inset promos from Earthquake and Dino Bravo. Irish whip, and Warrior connects with a clothesline. Gorilla Press Slam by the Warrior, and the splash finishes it at 1:34. After all that, I think they pulled this from Superstars, but like I said, added new commentary, because they can.
- Update, courtesy of WWF Magazine. This coming wednesday, the No Holds Barred PPV will take place, featuring a tag team match, taking place inside of a steel cage, between the teams of Hulk Hogan and Brutus Beefcake, and Randy Savage and Zeus. We go back to the Survivor Series, courtesy of Coliseum Home Video, where Zeus treats Hulk Hogan like a dradle, but gets Disqualified for tossing the referee around. We get a promo from the heels, and they've got a cage wall set up in front of them to make things more important looking.
- Tito Santana vs. Bad News Brown:
We're Joined in Progress, from the November show held at Madison Square Garden with Gorilla Monsoon and Hillbilly Jim calling the action. Bad News is hurting outside the ring, and Santana chokes him after coming back into the ring. Santana with mounted punches in the corner, but he's doing it very slowly. Bad News with a blow to the midsection, and now he's undoing one of the turnbuckle pads. Brown hammers away on Santana with rights and headbutts. Santana blocks being rammed and sends Brown into the exposed buckle, instead. Santana works over the leg of Brown then calls for the end. Brown counters the Figure-Four with a take-over, but fails to hit the Ghetto Blaster. Santana with the Flying Forearm, but Brown is knocked out of the ring. Brown grabs a chair, but Santana grabs it for a Tug-of-War. The action spills out of the ring, and they brawl until it's a Double Count-Out at 4:24 (JIP). Santana is showing intensity, but the finish was crap. I have this show taped somewhere, and remember this match going somewhere in the 15-20 minutes range.
- Bobby Heenan, dressed as Santa still, starts acting like himself, claiming Santa is a fake, and it's the parents buying all the presents. TELLING IT LIKE IT IS! "Tis the season to be swerved! There is no Santa. Santa is a shame. The guy in the discount store just came out of detox." Heenan claims Santa sounds like a crminal with all of his alias, then questions how anyone can believe that Reindeer fly.
- The Bolsheviks vs. W.T. Jones & Todd Becker:
We've got Schiavone and Alfred calling the action again, but this appears to be from a Wrestling Challenge taping. Volkoff had returned not too long before this, after nearly a year of Zhukov being a weekend scrub in singles and random tag matches. The Russian anthem gets sung, of course. The faces distract them, and get whooped for their troubles. Volkoff works over Becker and nails his crappy spinning kick. Inset promos from the Bushwhackers, and I think I've seen enough matches between those two teams to know how bad they can be. Jones tags in for his turn to get squashed. Volkoff whips Jones to the corner, and Zhukov nails a clothesline to the back of the head. That's enough for the three count at 1:39. Todd Becker gets the same treatment after the match.
- Roddy Piper comes onto the main studio and gets up in Santa's face. Heenan threatens if Piper hits him, then Piper will be suspended from hosting Primetime Wrestling. Heenan calmly gets up and continues to trash Santa Claus, prompting Piper to clothesline Heenan and beat the crap out of him, despite Monsoon's attempts at calming him down. We come back from a commercial, and Piper tries to explain his passion for his actions. I wonder why they never blew off the Piper-Rude feud on television.
- Richard Charland vs. Barry Horowitz:
We're Joined in Progress again, this time from the Maple Leaf Garden in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. I'm pretty sure this is pulled from the October show, but I'm not 100% sure. We've got Monsoon and Hayes calling the action. Charland with a side headlock applied, followed by shoulder block. Charland takes Horowitz over with another headlock. Horowitz escape with an elbow to the side of the head, followed by a knee lift. Whip to the corner is reversed, but Charland misses a charge. Horowitz taunts with a pat on the back, then stomps away. Horowitz throws Charland into the corner, then takes him over with a hip toss. Horowitz works over the arm, then applies a wristlock. Monsoon and Heenan constantly trash how much Charland hasn't been impressing them here. Horowitz with a scoop slam, then rolls up Charland for a two count. Irish whip, and and Horowitz connects with a running high knee. Whip to the corner, but Horowitz misses a charge. Charland hammers away, then nails Horowitz with a dropkick. Irish whip and a back drop from Charland, and now Horowitz wants mercy. Irish whip, and Charland catches Horowitz in an Airplane Spin, and thats enough for the three count at 6:13. 3/4* Horowitz's antics were pretty entertaining, but Charland didn't bring much to the table. The verbal deconstruction on commentary continues.
- We go to Sean Mooney and the Event Center. We've got pre-recorded comments from Rick Rude and Bobby Heenan, who have issues with... well, I don't think I have to say anything. Next we get a promo from Hercules, who wasn't doing much at this point of his run.
- The Genius and Mr. Perfect are at a Golf course, and Perfect sinks a Hole in One, in between making threats to the WWF Champion, Hulk Hogan. There's another feud that just kind of ended before a proper televison blow-off, unless you count that lame match on Saturday Night's Main Event following Wrestlemania VI.
- Bret "Hitman" Hart vs. Greg "The Hammer" Valentine (w/ Jimmy Hart):
We're coming to you from the Meadowlands Arena in Meadowlands, NJ for this one, with Tony Schiavone and Lord Alfred Hayes calling the action. I'm not sure, but this was probably from the early summer, when Bret was pushed into singles for a little while before having the carpet pulled from under him. Lockup to start, and we get a clean break. Lockup #2, and this time Valentine with a shove. Lockup #3, and this time Bret shoves Hammer down. Valentine tries to boot him, but Bret catches it and connects with an atomic drop. Bret heads outside after Jimmy Hart, but he's smart enough to avoid a sneak attack from Valentine, hammering away on him on the apron. Bret with a snapmare, followed by an elbow drop. Bret drives an elbow to the top of the skull, then applies a chinlock. Valentine takes it into the corner, and they exchange some stiff blows. Bret staggers Valentine with a bionic elbow and a headbutt, and a dropkick finally puts the Hammer down. Whip to the corner, but Valentine hits the post on a charge attempt. Back in the ring, and Bret takes Valentine over with an arm drag, then applies an armbar. Valentine with a slam, but Bret holds onto the armbar. We cut back to the studio for a commercial break. We cut back to the match, and Valentine tosses Bret out of the ring. Jimmy Hart trash talks him while Valentine gathers his senses from the beatings he had been taking. Valentine finally brings Hart back in the ring, and drops a series of elbows, followed by some choking. Valentine hammers away on Bret in the corner, then whips him hard across the ring. Valentine pounds away on the back of Hart, then covers for a two count.Valentine covers again for another two count. Valentine applies a chinlock, then opts to rake the eyes. Valentine with a small package for a two count, followed by a headbutt to the midsection. Valentine tries pinning down Bret by the wrists, but Bret won't stay down for the three count. Bret gets the knees up in between the legs of Valentine, and now both men are down. Valentine quickly nails Bret with a stiff clothesline, then scoops him up for a back breaker. Valentine heads to the second rope, but he ends up missing an elbow drop. Bret hammers away with rights, and Valentine eventually takes a face-first dive to the canvas. Bret with a scoop slam, followed by a leg drop. Bret with a beautiful snap suplex for a two count. Irish whip, and Bret with a fist to the midsection, followed by a roll up for another two count. Bret with a side back breaker, then he heads to the second rope for an elbow drop, but here's Mr. Perfect to create a distraction. Valentine nails Hart from behind, then nails an elbow to the back of the head. Valentine stomps away on the knee, then he turns the Hart Breaker around. Bret blocks, kicking Valentine off into the corner, then covers for a two count as the bell sounds at 18:44 for a Time Limit Draw. I think a little bit was clipped out for the commercial break. **1/2 Not as good as I was expecting it to be, but it was still a decent little match for a second rate house show. I don't understand the inclusion of Mr. Perfect here, though.
- Brother Love Show time, and his special guests this week are the WWF Champion Hulk Hogan, and his personal sidekick, Brutus "The Barber" Beefcake. Guess what they're trying to promote. If you guessed No Holds Barred: The Match/The Movie, then you win... well, nothing. For the record, the match was something taped at a Wrestling Challenge taping, with a lackluster crowd, and the match barely went past 10-minutes.
- Hercules vs. Craig Green:
We're back to the Superstars of Wrestling stuff, but with Schiavone and Hayes again. I can tell, because of all the blurring. Hercules over powers the jobber, and puts him down with a shoulder block. Hercules rams him into the buckle a couple of times, followed by a hip toss. Hercules with an armbar. Hercules continues to have the most boring squash match, ever. Hercules with a scoop slam, and the "back breaker" submission ends it at 2:08. Not even an inset promo, which goes to show that Hercules had NOTHING going for him.
- Back in the studio, and Roddy Piper is being removed from the Primetime Wrestling hosting gig for attacking his co-host. He doesn't take it with quiet dignity and grace, obviously.
- Mark Young vs. The Genius:
Interesting match... Young is the son of Jay Strongbow, but disappeared quickly after his debut, and I don't think he really surfaced anywhere else. We're Joined in Progress, from Fort Wayne, Indiana. The two exchange aerobic techniques until Young takes Genius over with a series of arm drags and a hurracanrana for a two count. Young with some break-dancing in the rng, while the Genius takes a breather. Back in the ring, and Young misses a dropkick. The Genius stomps away on Young, but tends to taunt the crowd more than anything else. Genius remains in control with nothing more than punch and kick stuff. Young fights back and takes him over with a back drop. Irish whip, and Genius takes him down with a crucifix for the three count at 2:51. I don't know if this was supposed to be a squash match, or not.
- Dusty Rhodes is on the special interview stage, and he's got a Christmas present for himself, and it's in the form of his new manager, the sweet Sapphire, the Dusty Rhodes super-fan who has been hanging around WWF arenas for the past few months.
- "Superfly" Jimmy Snuka vs. "Macho King" Randy Savage (w/ Sensational Sherri):
It's time for our feature match of the night, and we're back to the Maple Leaf Garden, the same show that the Charland/Horowitz match was pulled from. Savage does a lot of stalling, not unlike him from this part of his career. Lockup to start, and Savage with a knee to the midsection. Irish whip is reversed, and Snuka nails Savage with a chop. Snuka with a kick to the midsection, followed by a diving headbutt. Snuka with a snapmare from out of the corner, followed by a fist drop from the second turnbuckle. Snuka remains in control, doing his usual offense, boring me to tears. The action spills outside of the ring, and Snuka unwisely goes after Sherri. Back in the ring, and Snuka is still controlling the action. Irish whip, and Snuka with another kick to the midsection. Back to the action after a brief commercial break, and Snuka nails Savage with a headbutt. Irish whip, and Snuka with a knife-edge. Savage goes for a piledriver, but Snuka blocks and back drops free. Snuka heads to the top rope, and he connects with a double chop to the neck. Sherri has the referee distracted long enough that Savage was able to kick out of a pinfall attempt. Savage nails Snuka with a running high knee, and the referee gets taken out in the process. Savage heads to the top rope, and comes off into a fist from the Superfly. Snuka with a scoop slam, then he heads to the top rope for a headbutt. Sherri gets in the ring, but Snuka sets his attentions to her. Savage accidentally nails Sherri with a running knee, and Snuka puts him down with more chops. Snuka has Savage trapped in the ropes, but he's too stupid to finish him off. Sherri comes in and nails Snuka with the loaded purse, and puts Savage on top of him. Sherri then makes sure the referee makes the three count at a trimmed 9:19. The commercial break conveniently clipped out all of Savage's offense, but both men are so sweaty, this match had to have gone nearly 20-minutes. DUD Not much to see here, especially when half of it was clipped out, for whatever reasons. After the match, Jim Duggan saves Snuka from any further beatings.
Final Thoughts: The typical conclussion to an episode of Primetime Wrestling. The exclusives weren't mind blowingly good, and the squash matches were a waste of time, but the studio segments featuring Monsoon, Heenan, and Piper really made the show watchable. I wish they would release a DVD of just the Monsoon and Heenan segments from these shows. I'm sure they'd be more entertaining than a lot of the stuff that's seen the light of day on DVD.
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