January 19, 1991
Announced attendance: 16.000
PPV buyrate: 440.000
Hi everyone and welcome to my very first review of 1991. We’re starting off with the World Wrestling Federation and one of their marquee events – the Royal Rumble. Joining the featured traditional Royal Rumble match are bouts such as The Ultimate Warrior vs. Sgt. Slaughter for the WWF Championship, The Rockers taking on The Orient Express and more.
Here is the list of champions in the WWF heading into this show:
- WWF Champion: The Ultimate Warrior [champion since April 1, 1990 – previous champion: Hulk Hogan)
- WWF Intercontinental Champion: Mr. Perfect [champion since Nov. 19, 1990 – previous champion: The Texas Tornado)
- WWF World Tag Team Champions: The Hart Foundation (Bret Hart & Jim Neidhart) [champions since Aug. 27, 1990 – previous champions: Demolition)
Enjoy the review!
The hosts are Gorilla Monsoon & Roddy Piper
The Rockers (Shawn Michaels & Marty Jannetty) vs. The Orient Express (Kato & Tanaka)(w/ Mr. Fuji)
We’re starting off the year with The Rockers and you couldn’t get a much more exciting start that that. Slugfest gets things going with Michaels taking a giant double backdrop. Marty comes in to clean house, as now the Rockers double press slam and follow it up with stereo dives to the outside. We get a huge ‘USA’ chant because things were very much heated at this particular time. More on this later! We get a stalemate before Marty dominates Kato with a headlock. Kato fights out of that and they get into a fast sequence that sees Kato armdrag Jannetty right into an armbar, but Jannetty keeps him down with a headscissors. Kato rolls through to escape only for Jannetty to bridge up and backslide him for two. Nice! Off to Tanaka for a double-team move, but Jannetty leapfrogs over Kato and we get a heel miscommunication for a huge pop. Marty armdrags Tanaka to stay in control.
Off to Michaels who stays on the arm. Tanaka pulls the hair to escape and hits a flying forearm for two. Tanaka works a chinlock on Michaels while the crowd claps in support for The Rockers. This crowd is loud, which is always a good thing. The Orient Express miss another double-team move and nearly collide again, but Michaels sends them into each other via a double noggin knocker anyway. Harley Race high knee from Michaels gets two on Tanaka. Michaels works the chinlock while we get a small we will we will rock you chant to really date this show! Tanaka fights out only to walk into a sleeper which Kato breaks with a flying karate chop behind the ref’s back. Tanaka blocks a kick to the gut and hits a brilliant legsweep. Tanaka pounds away and eventually they get into a slugfest in the corner. Kato runs in but Michaels meets him with a moonsault as IT’S BREAKING LOOSE IN FLORIDA! The Rockers clean house by backflipping out of atomic drops and hitting stereo dropkicks to the Japanese followed by dives to the floor.
Michaels hits a delayed vertical suplex on Kato but Tataka breaks up the pin. He goes for a monkey flip out of the corner instead, but Tanaka is there yet again to snap Michaels’ throat on the top rope and turn things around. Even Mr. Fuji gets a cheapshot with the cane to Michaels’ throat, which draws good heat and effectively makes Michaels your rocker in peril! Nice double team splash from the Japanese sends Michaels throat first into the top rope once more. Tanaka works the DEADLY JAPANESE NERVE MASSAGE OF EXCRUCIATING PAIN. Off to Kato as we get to see a Flair flip from Michaels right into a Tanaka superkick that sends Michaels over the top and back to the ring. Jannetty gets pissed and distracts the ref, allowing the heels to hit Michaels with a double clothesline for two. They grab their belt, but Michaels blocks the attack and splashes the belt, which sends the heels into each other. Michaels crawls aaaand… HOT TAG JANNETTY! He cleans house and a powerslam on Kato gets a nearfall. Dropkick gets two more, but Tanaka is there to break it up. They get into a test of strength fighting over a backslide, which Kato wins thanks to a Tanaka cheapshot for another nearfall. Michaels returns the favour by tripping Kato on a criss cross, which gives Jannetty two. Double-team superkick by the Rockers sets up the Rocket Launcher, only for Tanaka to come in and dump Michaels. Kato slingshots Jannetty right into a Tanaka chop. They go for another one, but Michaels punches Tanaka in the gut behind Kato’s back as then Kato slingshots Jannetty… into a sunset flip on Tanaka for the win! The match went 19:15.
- Rating: Early match of the year candidate to kick off the event and the year! The Rockers were always fun and exciting to watch, and even more with a hot crowd that was invested in everything they did. The match featured a number of interesting spots that simply weren’t being done at the time, and thus stood out – including the unique finish. Go out of your way to check this one out. Awesome opener. ****
‘Macho King’ Randy Savage is backstage with Sean Mooney. Savage says he’s the greatest WWF Champion ever and announces he has a commitment with Sgt. Slaughter that, if he wins the title tonight, Savage is the number one contender. Mooney asks if he has the same commitment with Warrior. “SARCASTIC IN YOUR VOICE, YEAAAH” is Savage’s reply!! He takes us to the arena floor where Sensational Sherri is with Mean Gene.
Sensational Queen Sherri baits The Warrior
Sherri can only hope Warrior is as honorable as Sgt. Slaughter is, but she has her doubts. She talks some trash and eventually draws The Ultimate Warrior in. Oh boy does that purple WWF Championship belt look like crap. Looks more like one of those purple Easter Almonds. Sherri asks for a title shot after the match tonight but gets no answer. That’s when things get serious, as Sherri starts seducing Warrior. She has always looked into his lips and wondered what it would be like. She takes off Warrior’s jacket, touches his chest and tries to steal a kiss. Still no answers makes her slowly beg… on her knees. Uh oh! The guys in the front row are losing their shit and this is all quite hilarious to watch. Warrior starts shaking like a maniac and gives her a loud “NO” which doesn’t make Savage happy.
This was a very interesting segment, to say the least! To be honest, something similar was done the next decade with Batista and Melina, and it was much better. There, she tried to seduce him out of a tag title match against MNM and gave him all of it… only for Batista to still get into a tag title match against Melina’s MNM and win the belts with Rey. Here, Warrior didn’t get any of it and ended up without the title as well!
The Big Bossman vs. The Barbarian(w/ Bobby Heenan)
These guys had a tough act to follow after that last segment! So the story here is that Heenan and Rick Rude were talking about Bossman’s mother in late 1990, but Rude left the company and Bossman took on the Heenan family on his way to Heenan himself instead. Bossman has his eyes on Heenan at ringside, which allows Barbarian to take over with a couple of uppercuts. Bossman fights back with a big boot that staggers Barbarian followed by a back elbow that does send him down. Barbarian bails but Bossman goes after him and sends him into the post while Heenan hides on the other side of the ring. He was the best! Barbarian pokes the eye on the apron, but misses something off the top and Bossman sends him flying with a clothesline over the top rope. And the crowd goes nuts. This is a really fun show to watch so far.
Barbarian blocks a Bossman clothesline before dropping him with a suplex and a clothesline of his own. Bossman gets his foot caught in the ropes, allowing Barbarian to slug away. A slam into the post leaves Bossman out on the floor and even Heenan gets his own cheapshot in. Back in a backbreaker gets two. We hit the bearhug while Heenan yells “SQUEEZE EM”! Bossman escapes but walks into an uppercut as Barbarian elbowdrops him a couple of times for two. Back to the bearhug but this time Bossman fights back with an enziguiri! He crawls over and gets two. Bossman misses a charge in the corner and Barbarian nearly steals it with a roll-up. Barbarian charges right into a Bossman stungun for the win… but Barbarian grabs the ropes to break! We get a double shoulderblock for a HOSS COLLISION and a double KO spot. Barbarian goes up for his flying clothesline and this time Bossman gets his foot on the ropes to break. Barbarian charges… right into the Bossman Slam. One. Two. Finger on the ropes! Barb rakes the eyes and hits a piledriver to set up for the flying clothesline once more. Bossman turns around! Barbarian connects… but Bossman rolls through and wins it at 14:15.
- Rating: HOLY COW where did this come from!?!?!?!? This was actually a very good match with a number of awesome false finishes, with the added positive of no one’s finisher being “buried” – they went for the rope break instead. Bossman showed up with his working boots on, as he was simply on fire during this feud with Heenan. Quite the awesome hoss fight. ***1/4
Meanwhile, Sgt. Slaughter and General Adnan are backstage with Sean Mooney. If you think there’s enough turmoil in the world, just wait until he goes out there and defeats The Ultimate Puke for the WWF Championship. The fans need a new leader, and that will be him after tonight. And that’s… an order! Oh boy…
The Ultimate Warrior responds with Mean Gene. Warrior says he gives no orders, he only takes them from his Warriors. He walks into this battle as the ultimate champion and he will walk away as the ultimate victor-aaaaaaaaah!!
WWF Championship – The Ultimate Warrior(c) vs. Sgt. Slaughter(w/ Gen. Adnan)
During the entrances, Gorilla clarifies that the views of Sgt. Slaughter do not IN ANY WAY reflect the views of the WWF. In other words, let’s calm the waters before we get in any major trouble. Warrior runs down as usual and clears the ring before ripping the Iraqi flag for a HUGE pop. Warrior beats up Slaughter with the remainings of the flag, before stuffing it in Slaughter’s mouth and beating him up some more as the crowd loses their collective poop. Slaughter eats some post and a backdrop. A whip into the buckle sends Slaughter down (great bump by Sarge) as he just gets his ass handed to him to the delight of the crowd. Into the other corner, as this time Sarge goes flying over the corner and into the railing. Sherri comes down to ringside and grabs Warrior’s legs on a criss cross, drawing him to the outside for a pursuit… but here’s Randy Savage at the top of the ramp to knock Warrior down with lighting equipment. Holy Moses, NOW this crowd is getting loud!
Warrior tries to crawl his way down the ramp while Sarge keeps distracting the ref and breaking his count. Slaughter puts him back in where he pounds away. Slaughter goes to work on the back with a backbreaker and gets massive heat just by taunting the fans. Slaughter misses a clothesline, however, and they clothesline each other for a double KO spot. Warrior powers his way out of a bearhug with a powerslam, but his back gives out and he goes back down as well. Sarge smartly drops a few elbows to the back and drops him with another backbreaker. Camel Clutch time but Warrior’s feet are under the bottom rope. Slaughter pounds away but HEEEEEE’S SHAKING! Clothesline City by Warrior featuring some of the worst running-the-ropes I’ve ever seen (thank god the ropes never exploded during a Warrior match, which is not impossible – ie: Hart Foundation vs. The Rockers from late 1990 – otherwise Warrior would’ve fallen backwards and possibly broken his neck on the apron the sloppy way he ran those ropes). Flying shoulderblock follows as Warrior calls for the finish… but here’s Sensational Sherri once more. Warrior pushes her inside the ring for a press slam all the way onto Randy Savage on the floor for a very loud pop. Slaughter cheapshots Warrior from behind and chokes away on the ropes, before Savage BLASTS him with a scepter shot to the face. Slaughter pushes him to the middle of the ring, adds an exclamation point with a relatively weak elbowdrop and covers for the win and the title at 12:47.
We get uncomfortable silence from the audience as they hold the announcement of the decision. Warrior runs all the way to the back while a big BULLSHIT chant breaks out. Uh oh. Fink gets on the mic and announces that the winner of this match is… the NEW (crowd gets really pissed) World Wrestling Federation Champion, Sgt. Slaughter.
- Rating: Well, obviously this whole angle was a very cheap business tactic by Vince McMahon and the WWF, taking advantage of a very serious issue that was killing many people on a daily basis. With that aside, the ridiculous heat involved allowed them to have arguably the most simple match in history (another example is Hogan vs. Rock), as they could’ve just stared at each other and the people would’ve reacted to everything. Technically it was a very simple match, even poor if you will, but the tension and the (real life) drama here is what carries it. They did a great job of building up Warrior vs. Savage for WrestleMania VII as well. As far as Warrior’s title reign being over is concerned, it was about time. His reign wasn’t bad but it wasn’t very good either, it was just kind of there taking a backseat to whatever Hulk Hogan was doing, so I’d say it was the smart decision to transition it back to Hogan. Very memorable match due to numerous reasons, elevated mostly by the crowd and the real life tensions. **1/2
I can’t move on without giving props to Sarge for playing this VERY DIFFICULT role and putting his own life on the line. He received a lot of death threats during this period from angry fans and had to wait for HOURS to leave the arenas in order to avoid a tragedy. Not to mention wearing bullet-proof gear or only being able to go out in public when nobody else was doing so. He once told a story, in his interview with Sam Roberts, that the owner of a restaurant early in the morning after a show got really pissed when he saw him walk in, and Slaughter immediately left and went to have dinner in another place before something bad happened. Now repeat this EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. Sarge, you’re a legend and you have all my respect!
WrestleMania VII ad featuring a very excited Vince McMahon doing the voiceover. Vince announces the show will be held in the 100,000 seats arena Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, but it would eventually be moved to the much smaller Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena due to
shitty ticket sales bomb threats. Considering they didn’t even sell out the smaller arena with a little over 15,000 seats, make up your own conclusions!
The Mountie(w/ Jimmy Hart) vs. Koko B. Ware
This is the true definition of filler, as the crowd still has the result of the previous match on their minds and nobody could possibly give a flying burrito about these two. This is the return of Jacques Rougeau, who had his last televised match as himself exactly one year earlier in the opener of the 1990 Royal Rumble event, alongside Raymond against the Bushwhackers. Speaking of cultural differences, here’s a match that wouldn’t be well received well nowadays either – a guy playing a mountie/cop squashing a black dude.
They lockup and get into a stalemate. Mountie misses a back elbow and eats a dropkick that sends him to the floor. A fun criss cross sequence ends with Koko ignoring a Mountie leapfrog and just nailing him in the face as Koko goes to work on the arm. They get into a slugfest and Koko goes flying to the floor off a blind charge. Mountie works the PASSIVE CONTROL MOUNTIE CLAW HOLD OF DOOM, which knocks out Koko. And the crowd. Seriously, I feel bad for these two having to follow Slaugter’s title win.
Mountie chokes away until Koko sunset flips him for two. Mountie dumps Koko while Jimmy taunts the bird at ringside. Koko backdrops his way out of a piledriver but ends up going nowhere as The Mountie slugs away. Koko catches Mountie with a neckbreaker and makes his comeback with a couple of headbutts and a slam. He follows it up with a nice missile dropkick that sees him land on his feet. He gets distracted with Jimmy, though, but still hits a high crossbody for two. Koko then walks into… something (a Bossman slam?) for the win at 12:47.
- Rating: This was really boring. They were in a tough spot on the card, and giving them twelve minutes wasn’t exactly the smartest idea in the world. I feel bad for Jacques Rougeau though, since this was pretty much the introduction of the Mountie gimmick. Highly recommendation… to skip. *
Randy Savage says he’s the greatest of all time and he’s now going after Slaughter. “No one says no to the Macho King. Let him cry. LET HIM CRY!” Savage was the best! Warrior knocks on the door and they run out of there.
Sgt. Slaughter says he told us so while everyone else was aligning with The Ultimate Puke. He has no boundaries and whenever he says he will beat up someone, he will do it. Us, maggots, are all dismissed. He is the new World Wrestling Federation Champion, and that’s an order!
Meanwhile, we get to hear from some of the participants in the Rumble match. Why they stopped doing these is beyond me. Jake Roberts says there will be 29 men out there sweating, but not him, he’s cold and he’ll get to Martel. Earthquake & Jimmy Hart are ready for everyone and have something special for Hogan. Greg Valentine says the real hammer is going to come crushing down on all the other 29 guys. The Texas Tornado promises victory when the clouds go dark and the tornado comes down… something. The Road Warriors put over the ‘every man for himself’ concept. Brother Love & The Undertaker say the only thing everyone else will be doing tomorrow is resting in peace. The delivery still wasn’t quite there. Hacksaw Jim Duggan will be standing next to the corner and knocking them out of the ring, tough guy. Rick Martel knows how things look for Jake Roberts and it will be his pleasure to give him some guidance on his way out of the ring. The British Bulldog is glad he’s a bulldog. Ok? Bobby Heenan & Mr. Perfect promise a perfect victory. Tugboat wonders what will happen if it comes down to him and Hogan. Well, I think everyone knows what that would be, Tugster!
Ted DiBiase says there is a bond thicker than blood – his money, which bought him his bodyguard. Virgil doesn’t look very happy.
Dusty Rhodes & Dustin Rhodes vs. Ted DiBiase & Virgil
This is pretty much Dusty’s last match as a full-time wrestler, as he had already signed a deal with WCW to come back as a booker, pretty much effective after this show. Dustin went with him too, of course. The heels jump the Rhodes to start but get whipped into each other and eat stereo bionic elbows. DiBiase bails and demands Virgil to get in there and face Dustin. Virgil starts off well with a cheapshot only for the youngster to retaliate with a flying clothesline and a dropkick, and Virgil bails. DiBiase bitchslaps Virgil and forces him to get back in there and get the job done. Virgil gets in there and gets clotheslined over the top and back out by Dustin. DiBiase says Virgil is embarassing him in front of all these people and demands to get tagged in.
DiBiase takes down Dustin with a clothesline and pounds away in the corner. Backdrop follows as DiBiase taunts Dusty. Dustin faceplants DiBiase, who finds himself in the babyface corner and eats bionic elbows from both father and son. Dusty comes in and he takes the fight to DiBiase. Virgil comes in to break a sleeper though, and it’s back to Dustin for a dropkick for two, with Virgil again coming in for the save. Virgil comes in as well and for once he actually manages to not fuck things up, getting out of the way of a Dustin charge in the corner and hurting his knee. Virgil goes to work on the leg and rams it into the post. Off to DiBiase for a double-team clothesline, but Dustin moves out of the way and Virgil clotheslines DiBiase instead. Virgil apologizes but DiBiase beats him up and dumps him regardless. Meanwhile, Dusty gets the tag and runs wild, only to miss a charge in the corner and get rolled up to effectively end his active career at 9:57.
Ted DiBiase gets on the mic and reminds you don’t cross the line without paying the price. He proceeds to call Virgil an idiot and demands him to get his Million Dollar belt and put it around his waist, which starts up a Virgil chant! Virgil gets the belt and makes his way back inside, but hesitates and the crowd starts getting really loud. Virgil throws the belt down in frustration, only for DiBiase to remind him of his mother and his family, which leaves Virgil visually shaken. Virgil slowly grabs the belt while DiBiase starts the evil laugh and the catchphrase… HOLY SHIT VIRGIL CLOCKS HIM IN THE FACE! Virgil literally gets a standing ovation and the pop of his life, leaving the ring looking like a million bucks. If you ever wonder if Ted DiBiase is a great worker or not, always remember that he made Virgil look like a star. That should clear up all the doubts!
- Rating: The match and the Rhodes’ were nothing but complete afterthoughts here, with Dusty doing the job on his way out. However, what you need to see here is the post-match angle that saw Virgil finally snap and turn on ‘The Million Dollar Man’. Overall it was pretty fun. **
Hulk Hogan is in the back with Mean Gene. He wishes all the best to those in the war and promises to win the Rumble… but wait, Mean Gene has just been told there’s a rumor that the new WWF Champion Sgt. Slaughter destroyed the American flag. Keyword: rumor. Slaughter actually refused to do this, as it would’ve been going WAY too far. Hogan then botches his lines, which was quite rare and pretty funny to see. And thus, consider this as one the first teases of Hogan/Sarge for WrestleMania.
1991 Royal Rumble Match
#1 is Bret Hart and #2 is Dino Bravo. Bret catches him with an atomic drop and nearly eliminates Bravo, who rakes the eyes to stay in it. Bravo responds with his own atomic drop as now he takes over. He misses an elbowdrop and here comes Greg Valentine at #3. Valentine goes at it with Bravo, which gets their manager Jimmy Hart all worked up at ringside. Jimmy sides with Bravo and allows him to take over briefly, until Hammer rams Bravo’s head into the buckle and puts him out for our first elimination. Valentine hits Jimmy Hart too, as Bret tries to put him out unsuccessfully. Paul Roma is #4 and he briefly sides with Valentine against Hart before taking him out as well. Bret fights back with an atomic drop on Roma and follows it up with the double noggin knocker. Roma & Blues work together to eliminate Bret, but they start fighting each other again instead. The Texas Tornado is #5 with Tornado punches for both Roma and Valentine. Bret slams Roma but misses a middle rope elbow. At this point we get the usual fighting in the corner and the teased eliminations that go nowhere. Rick Martel joins the party at #6 while Valentine sells a Tornado punch with a Flair flop. Bret pounds with great looking STIFF punches to the gut of Martel in the corner. Roma briefly saves him but takes him out with a clothesline. Saba Simba is #7 and the crowd goes mild. Tornado nearly eliminates Martel, which the crowd is very much in favour of! Please get Earthquake or something out here, this house is getting very crowded. Never mind, it’s just Bushwhacker Butch at #8. He completely ignores everyone and just walks around like an idiot, while Saba Simba gets thrown out by Martel. Out comes Jake Roberts at #9 and shit’s about to get real. The match literally stops so he and Martel can get into a massive slugfest, with Roberts finally having the chance to beat him up. Short-arm clothesline sets up the DDT, but Martel bails under the bottom rope. Roberts goes after him and Martel survives elimination. Hercules is #10 to complete the first third of the field.
Roberts gets caught in the ropes for Martel to attack, but thankfully for him Von Erich is there for the save. Tito Santana comes out at #11. Can’t you please send one of your 250 huge freaks so he can clean at least half of this ring? Where’s the Warlord when you need him? Roma goes flying out via Roberts. The Undertaker is #12 and here comes that feeling in the arena again. Bret immediately gets slammed off and out as then UT no-sells everyone’s stuff and chokes Tornado with just one hand. Jimmy Snuka is next at #13 while Butch goes flying out via Undertaker. Tornado jumps on UT’s back, and this just screams bad idea. Valentine joins Von Erich by nailing him with a flying elbow, but UT no-sells it all. They get into a slugfest near the ropes as The British Bulldog is #14. The action is just impossible to follow at this point. Bulldog atomic drops Martel and Roberts joins him for the elimination attempt. We’re halfway through with Smash at #15. He gets into a nice brief sequence that ends with Bulldog nailing him with a clothesline. Martel dumps out Jake Roberts and boy is he pissed. This story had actually been going on for a number of months and it was quite good. Hawk is #16 and the ring is still ridiculously full. It’s just a bunch of stuff happening and everyone laying in the corner. UT and Hawk go at it, which is interesting because just a few months earlier these two were wrestling each other on WCW PPV back when Undertaker (Mean Mark) was briefly a member of the Skyscrapers. Speaking of forgettable WCW tag teams, Shane Douglas is #17. Von Erich and Snuka are both gone via Undertaker and Hawk, respectively. God this Rumble is nothing compared to the previous year’s. #18 is… nobody. Anyway, the match just goes on with the same kicking and punching in the corner. Animal is #19 and the LOD actually put out Undertaker with a double clothesline. Out of EVERYONE, you eliminate him? This match hates me. Hawk quickly follows him out via Martel and Herc. Crush is #20.
Martel is nearly gone at the hands of Santana but he somehow manages to get back in. What a showing by Rick Martel here. Jim Duggan joins us at #21 and at this point I just want Hogan or someone to come out and bury everyone so I can follow the action for the first time in what feels like one hour. FINALLY here comes Earthquake at #22. About damn time. Animal is the first victim as he goes flying off a blind charge. Duggan jumps Quake and unfortunately no one else goes out via Earthquake yet. What did I do to deserve this? Mr. Perfect is #23 and he immediately flies around for Duggan. He goes for the clothesline, but Perfect backdrops him out of the ring and the match. Perfect dropkicks Smash but walks into a Tito clothesline. Hulk Hogan is #24 and I don’t think I’ve ever been happier to see him. Clean this ring up, Hulkster. Do it FOR AMERICA! See ya later, Smash. Hogan goes after Quake, but you just know that won’t result in an elimination. Perfect helps Quake and now Hogan gets worked over by Earthquake. Jesus Christ, not even Hogan to put the geeks out? Haku is #25 and meanwhile Valentine gets thrown out via Hogan after 45 minutes. Martel chokes away on Hogan with the shirt which draws the usual Hogan chant. Jim Neidhart comes out at #26. We get a flying Chico as Earthquake puts Santana away. Lucky #27 is… Bushwhacker Luke. He gets in and he gets thrown out in four seconds via Earthquake. And then he just continues to walk all the way to the back. Yep, it’s the famous moment and the record that would only be broken by Santino Marella in 2009. Brian Knobbs from The Nasty Boys is #28 as this Rumble just won’t pick up. Literally half of the guys are still in it, which is just absolutely mental. Hercules gets (finally) eliminated by Knobbs. Warlord is #29 to no reaction whatsoever. He goes after Bulldog with his trademarked CLUBBING BLOWS OF DOOM and there goes Crush via Hogan. Out goes Warlord as well with a clothesline by Hogan. Thanks for participating, big man. Tugboat enters at #30 which means Randy Savage was supposed to be the 18th entrant earlier, but he ran away from Warrior out of the building earlier.
Knobbs scores another elimination in the form of Shane Douglas. Tugboat jumps his friend Hogan and nearly puts him out, but Tugboat is just asking for the inevitable. And there he goes at the hands of Hogan. Bulldog dropkicks Perfect out and now I want to see that IC title match! Martel dumps Anvil as guys are just being thrown out left, right and centre after about thirty minutes with a handful of eliminations. Bulldog backdrops Haku all the way back to the island. Which leaves us with…
Final five – Hogan, Earthquake, Martel, Bulldog & Knobbs
Martel makes the mistake of going up only to get crotched and eventually eliminated by Bulldog. What a performance by Martel. Bulldog goes next at the hands of Quake & Knobbs. They continue to work together against Hogan as Earthquake splashes Hogan. Quake hits him with the Earthquake splash afterwards… but Hogan hulks up. Double clothesline by Hogan and there goes Knobbs with a big boot. It’s down to Hogan and Quake, and a big boot staggers Quake. Jimmy Hart gets punched off the apron and Hogan wants to slam the giant. He goes for it but Quake lands on top of him. Elbowdrop connects and so does a second one. Piper says on commentary “what a Rumble” but no, Piper. Just no. Quake slams Hogan but again Hogan no-sells it and hulks up. Might as well piss in his mouth at this point, Hulkster. Hogan comes back with the usual and this time the slam connects. A clothesline dumps Earthquake to give Hogan his second Rumble in a row at 65:17.
- Rating: Somehow I don’t think you will see this Royal Rumble match in anyone’s top lists. It definitely has its moments, with Rick Martel being by far the highlight, but overall this can go suck a monkey’s pinky. Really boring Rumble for the most part with the action being impossible to follow for the majority of it. Not good. *1/2
Hogan poses with the American flag to close the show on his way to Slaughter and the WWF Championship.
END OF THE SHOW
Final thoughts: This show is definitely memorable, and overall I’d say it was a fairly enjoyable show. The opener between the Rockers and the Orient Express was absolutely amazing, a true match of the year contender already. Next up, Bossman and Barbarian exceeded my expectations and then some with a really good hoss fight. Then came Warrior and Slaughter, which is what everyone will always remember from this show. This one is not for everyone as it is a really poor match technically-speaking, but I had fun watching it due to the heat. The Mountie’s debut was nothing but a (very long) squash and there’s really nothing to see in that one. The tag match was fine but the post-match angle with Virgil’s babyface turn was amazing. And then came the Royal Rumble Match, which was pretty bad. If you want to judge it based on that alone that’s fine, but the actual show itself featured a number of great matches and segments (let’s not forget Savage and Sherri, who were tremendous as usual here). Bad Rumble match with a very good undercard results in a thumbs in the middle, leaning up for Royal Rumble 1991. 6/10
For comments and/or feedback click here
Considering this is a PPV with a very unique match, there will obviously be some changes to the point system. As far as all the regular preliminary matches go, I will use the regular point system, which you can see here. As far as the Rumble match itself goes, every elimination made will be worth 0.5 points. Getting eliminated will cost the wrestler 0.5 points as well. Also, for every full minute alive in the match, the wrestler earns 0.1 points. As for winning the whole thing, it will earn the victorious wrestler three points.
For those who participated in the preliminary matches:
|Sgt. Slaughter||2.5||1||–||+2 for winning a title||5.5|
|Marty Jannetty||4||1||–||+0.5 for winning the fall||5.5|
|Ted DiBiase||2||1||–||+0.5 for winning the fall||3.5|
|Tanaka||4||-1||–||-1 for losing the fall||2.5|
|Dusty Rhodes||2||-1||–||-0.5 for losing the fall||0.5|
|Koko B. Ware||1||-1||–||0|
|The Ultimate Warrior||2.5||-1||–||-2 for losing the title||-0.5|
And now for those in the Royal Rumble match:
|Hulk Hogan||1.5||3||1||7 (3.5 points)||21 (2.1 points)||11.1|
|Rick Martel||1.5||-0.5||1||4 (2 points)||52 (5.2 points)||9.2|
|The British Bulldog||1.5||-0.5||1||3 (1.5 points)||36 (3.6 points)||7.1|
|Greg Valentine||1.5||-0.5||1||1 (0.5 points)||44 (4.4 points)||6.9|
|Earthquake||1.5||-0.5||1||4 (2 points)||24 (2.4 points)||6.4|
|Hercules||1.5||-0.5||1||1 (0.5 points)||37 (3.7 points)||6.2|
|Tito Santana||1.5||-0.5||1||–||30 (3 points)||5|
|The Undertaker||1.5||-0.5||1||3 (1.5 points)||14 (1.4 points)||4.9|
|Shane Douglas||1.5||-0.5||1||–||26 (2.6 points)||4.6|
|Brian Knobbs||1.5||-0.5||1||3 (1.5 points)||10 (1 point)||4.5|
|The Texas Tornado||1.5||-0.5||1||–||24 (2.4 points)||4.4|
|Mr. Perfect||1.5||-0.5||1||1 (0.5 points)||16 (1.6 points)||4.1|
|Bret Hart||1.5||-0.5||1||–||20 (2 points)||4|
|1.5||-0.5||1||–||18 (1.8 points)||3.8|
|Jake Roberts||1.5||-0.5||1||1 (0.5 points)||12 (1.2 points)||3.7|
|Hawk||1.5||-0.5||1||2 (1 point)||6 (0.6 points)||3.6|
|Paul Roma||1.5||-0.5||1||–||14 (1.4 points)||3.4|
|Haku||1.5||-0.5||1||2 (1 point)||13 (1.3 points)||3.3|
|Jim Neidhart||1.5||-0.5||1||–||11 (1.1 points)||3.1|
|Animal||1.5||-0.5||1||1 (0.5 points)||6 (0.6 points)||3.1|
|Bushwhacker Butch||1.5||-0.5||1||–||10 (1 point)||3|
|Jimmy Snuka||1.5||-0.5||1||–||8 (0.8 points)||2.8|
|Jim Duggan||1.5||-0.5||1||–||4 (0.4 points)||2.4|
|Dino Bravo||1.5||-0.5||1||–||3 (0.3 points)||2.3|
|1.5||-0.5||1||–||2 (0.2 points)||2.2|
|The Warlord||1.5||-0.5||1||–||1 (0.1 points)||2.1|
Thank you so much for reading. Make sure you don’t miss any of the reviews coming up as we approach the seventh WrestleMania. Stay safe!