Brett Mix’s- WWF “Survivor Series 1987” Review:
“OOOOO Yeah, the Survivor Series!, Honkeytonk MAN pushed Elizabeth dowwwn and now at the Survivor Series he’s enters the DANGER ZONE…” –Randy “Macho Man” Savage
-This was the 1st Annual Survivor Series event.
-This event was added after WrestleMania III, to market the success from Hulk Hogan and André the Giant’s rivalry. Vince McMahon threatened cable companies who aired the NWA’s Starrcade (which was going head-to-head with Survivor Series on Thanksgiving night, 1987) instead of Survivor Series would not be allowed to broadcast WrestleMania IV. Most cable providers gave into McMahon’s threat and only a handful aired Starrcade.
-This event took place on Thanksgiving Day, November 26th, 1987 and was held at the Richfield Coliseum in Richfield, Ohio in front of 21,300 fans.
-Gorilla Monsoon and Jesse Ventura did commentary for the event.
-Now onto the PPV……………
1) Opening Contest- Randy “Macho Man” Savage (with Miss Elizabeth), Jake “The Snake” Roberts, Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat, Brutus “The Barber” Beefcake, and Hacksaw Jim Duggan vs The Honky Tonk Man (with Jimmy Hart), Hercules, Danny Davis, Ron Bass, & Harley Race (with Bobby Heenan) in a Five on Five Survivor Series Elimination Match
Jesse Ventura and Monsoon get a good ovation coming out wishing everyone a happy thanksgiving, Ventura gives Monsoon a cheapshot about his weight, but come on…it’s Jess.
They went over the rules well to begin the first ever Survivor Series event, as well as highlighting the feud between Honky and Macho meanwhile running down most of the card.
Ventura said the first time said Mania three Hogan would take on Andre in a Survivor Series match.
Back in these days the whole Survivor Series gimmick was all about the traditional match types.
So The first match of the first-ever Survivor Series was the first-ever Survivor Series elimination match. Macho Man Randy Savage, Jake Roberts, Ricky Steamboat, Brutus Beefcake and Jim Duggan faced WWF Intercontinental Champion The Honky Tonk Man, Hercules, Danny Davis, Ron Bass and Harley Race.
A ton of star power involved here so the anticipation was huge for this opener and the crowd was hot.
Randy Savage had recently turned babyface after a feud with Honkytonk Man. His unique charisma was hard to dislike so the babyface turn came only natural.
A little backstory, Honky Tonk managed a major upset by taking Steamboat’s IC title on June 2nd, 1987. So both Savage and Steamboat who earlier in the year had a legendary feud and match but were now alligning on the same sides as babyfaces against the reigning IC Champion, Honkey Tonk and that’s me.
Race came out with Bobby Heenan, Hercules followed, Outlaw Ron Bass, Dangerous
Danny Davis who got a tremendous amount of heel heat came out next to his own entrance theme. Honky claimed to be the greatest IC Champion of all time and was captain of his team.
Savage captained his own.
All babyfaces got a great pop until Savage and Liz came out and obviously blew the roof off the place.
The Federation had so many great IC contenders as character’s during this time and this elimination bout further proved that to be case.
The match began with Brutus Beefcake and his terrible ring attire and Hercules.
Herc tied up with Brutus until hit a reverse chinlock after a snapmare. Bruti fought back and hit leapfrog and a sleeper.
Davis got tagged in Bruti swung himinover the top rope and Jake the Snake dropped Davis.
Savage was tagged in and Davis was thrown headfirst to the corner. Steamboat came out next and then dropped a chop.
Harley Race came in out of desperation by a Davis tag. Steamboat nailed Race with a karate chop and both men exchanged blows. Steamboat caught a high knee from Race.
Steamboat was thrown out of the ring twice and came back in showing amazing flexibility and leverage impressing the fans. The Dragon caught a lot of punishment from Race, a belly to belly suplex is hit. The punishment continued to Steamboat until Hacksaw clotheslined Race on the floor. Both men risked the countout and at 4:11 and got counted out.
Big Ron Bass scoop slammed the Snake until he tagged in Savage who drops an elbow on Bass after pushing him into the corner with a knee. Ventura says there is nobody better then Savage when Macho is on his game. Bodyslams over and over to Bass and he nailed Honky on the apron. Bass took advantage on Randy Savage as he had focused on Honkytonk on the ring apron.
Honky came in for the first time but Savage fought back. Bass caught an elbow shot and then got back bodydropped.
Bass ran into the Barber who hit a charging high knee, he didn’t see the tag from Savage and Bass was gone at 5:18.
Honky worked over Beefcake. Anytime Honky was in the ring Savage wanted in with him. Honky with an arm-ringer. Hercules tagged in and now they began to isolate Beefcake with an arm-bar applied taking out the left arm of the Barber. Honky remained on Beefcake. Honky eventually finished off Beefcake after all that punishment in the center of the ring with a Shake, Rattle N’ Roll. This came after Bruti fought back with reverse atomic drop. Bruti was dragged from the outside allowing Honky to eliminate Beefcake at 6:53.
The Macho Man not very happy came in but Herc eventually started to wear him down. Savage delivered big elbow to Honky and then Roberts connected but couldn’t hit the ddt.
Honky in control on the Snake, Davis came in and delivered punishment until Roberts swung the momentum.
The Snake put away Davis with his very own DDT at 11:12.
Left was Honky and Herc up against Roberts, Steamboat and Savage.
Honky got frustrated as he couldn’t put Jake away. Out of a headlock Jake hit a highknee lift. Herc tags in just before Macho can tag in himself. Jake hits a hiptoss and makes the hot tag to the Dragon.
Steamboat off the ropes chops Herc and even Honky on the apron. The crowd goes wild. Steamboat with another thrust chop to Herc slams him down and chops his throat.
Macho Man tagged in by Steamboat!
Savage put away Hercules with his signature elbow at 16:19.
Three on one now.
Honky Tonk all alone with the Mouth of the South.
Savage took Honkey apart until he ran into the corner turnbuckle and Honky delivered knees into Savage’s back. Off the ropes Macho ducked a clothesline and dropped an elbow on the head of Honky.
Savage tags in Steamboat who chopped Honkeytonk Man. Jake is tagged in and the crowd chant ddt.
Honky brought to his knees and Savage throws his elbow at Honkytonk Man. Macho drops the double axehandle on Honky. An atmoic drop and Honky runs away.
In the end at 18:56 the match was over after Honkytonk man was counted out.
Fans seemed happy with the result despite Honky recieving major heel heat for walking out.
The remaining survivors were Macho Man Randy Savage, Jake Roberts, and Ricky Steamboat.
This match was a tremendous opener, with the main story being the babyface push of the Macho Man and how he’d do anything to take on Honky for pushing down Elizabeth earlier on.
2) The Fabulous Moolah, Rockin’ Robin, Velvet McIntyre, and the Jumping Bomb Angels (Itsuki Yamazaki and Noriyo Tateno) vs Sensational Sherri, The Glamour Girls (Leilani Kai and Judy Martin) (with Jimmy Hart), Donna Christanello, and Dawn Marie
Females who could actually work and given the time to prove that is never a bad thing.
Here we go.
The match’s bell rings and it’s clear Moolah means business as did Sherri who was announced at 160 pounds, Jess says it’s a tad to beefy for his liking.
Some solid in-ring action.
Velvet McIntyre pinned at 1:57 Donna Christianello with a victory roll and we hav out first pin of the match.
Velvet hit Kai who came in and Rockin’ Robin comes in as does Dawn Marie.
Those two clash for a bit. A nice snapmare and Sherri is back in landing a dropkick.
Nice sequence between Marie and Robin.
At 4:10 Dawn Marie is pinned by Rockin’ Robin after a flying crossbody.
Now we have Yamazaki and she’s on fire.
The Jumping Bomb Angels continued to show the Federation just what the were capable of doing. Even Jesse says he can’t believe it.
Double underhook suplex. The Angels isolated their competition until Rock N’ Robbin comes in with Sherri.
Moolah’s team had a 5-3 lead. At 6:50 Rockin’ Robin is eliminated by Sensational Sherri at 6:50.
Some intense action picks up when the Ladies grab at each others hair. A catapolt sends Robin fling. Moolah comes in to her defense and shows who’s still boss.
Moolah at her age proved she could certainly still go.
After nearly five minutes of showing great power she was then eliminated by a younger Judy Matin.
Fabulous Moolah pinned Judy Martin at 10:52 after a double clothesline.
The Jumping Bomb Angels who always remained impressive took over on Judy Martin. Martin was held in he crab by Tateno into a modified version of a sharphooter submission hold to weardown her competition.
Out of no where Martin got a victory roll but just a two.
Sherri tagged back in and drobe Martin to the canva head first. Soon McIntre tagged in.
She go the upperhand on Marie.
A top of hiplocks here.
Kai comes in and hits a double underhook suplex and goes to pin with a bridge, the bell rings but it’s called off. Joey Marella doesen’t stand by his decision.
A Boston Crab or a Slingshot is teased but she eventually gives Sherri a big swing.
From the corner Sherri is turned into a victory roll by Velvet by pinning the Champion much like Owen did to Bret at Mania X. Ventura speculates it’s got to put her in position for a #1 contender spot.
So at 14:54 Sensational Sherri is pinned Velvet McIntyre by after a victory roll.
A double underhook by an Angel to Judy Martin, Lelalni comes in and scoops it into a double under-leg hook to a body scissors.
Velvet McIntyre is defeated by Leilani Kai after an Electric Chair Drop at 17:20. Velvet loves leverage moves and she is rolled out and eliminated.
Two on Two and the Mouth of the South seemed worried outside the ring.
Leilani Kai beaten Itsuki Yamazaki by a flying crossbody pin at 18:31.
Two on one now, Martin is left.
The Mouth of the South is knocked off the apron, a clothesline by the Angels who win the match.
In the end at 20:10 Noriyo with a Flying Sitout Clothesline last eliminated Judy Martin to win the match.
The Jumping Bomb Angels were the Survivor’s.
This match definitely dragged, twenty minutes is a long time for a female match, even if it’s filled with women who can work.
Solid none the less.
3) Strike Force (Tito Santana and Rick Martel), The Young Stallions (Paul Roma and Jim Powers), The Fabulous Rougeaus (Jacques and Raymond), The Killer Bees (Jim Brunzell and Brian Blair), and the British Bulldogs (Davey Boy Smith and Dynamite Kid) vs The Hart Foundation (Bret Hart and Jim Neidhart) (with Jimmy Hart), The Islanders (Haku and Tama) (with Bobby Heenan), Demolition (Ax and Smash) (with Mr. Fuji), The Bolsheviks (Nikolai Volkoff and Boris Zhukov) (w/Slick), and The New Dream Team (Greg Valentine and Dino Bravo) (with Johnny V.) in a Survivor Series Elimination Match
A ton of talent here.
So many great tag teams. Strike Force (before they broke up months later at Mania 5) had recently taken the tag title’s off the Heel Hart Foundation so bad blood had been there to make things all the more interesting.
Get ready for a lengthy classic here.
The match began with Volkoff and Martel of Strike Force before he became the Model. A sunset flip by Martel and then a slugfest broke out.
The first elimination came after Tito Santana eliminated Boris Zhukov of the (Bolsheviks) at 1:30. Good exchange there.
Ax comes in until Brian of the Bees joins Bravo. A solid headbutt lays him out. Dynamite comes in.
The Dynamite Kid and Smash go at it. Dynamite drops a headbutt. The second elimination of the match came after one-half of Demolition Ax pinned Jacques Rougeau of the (Rougeau Bros.) Missed Diving Crossbody pin at 6 minutes.
A drop toe-hold by Brian of the bees to the Anvil, Roma comes in and then Demolition take part Roma. Haku is tagged in.
Frequent tags and isolation make this match really work. Demolition work over the Young Stallions and slam them to the mat.
One of the bees missing a high crossbody and now the Rougeau’s have been eliminated around the seven minute mark. Eight on both sides, four on four now.
The action fast and furious and Monsoon calls it. Powers missed and the Anvil comes in. Anvil lifts up Powers and Haku got a two.
A tag made to Roma and Haku missed his charge. Roma unleashed inthe corner and ran into Ax of Demolition.
A shoulder breaker where Demolition specialize nails Roma.
Bravo com in and hits a powerslam. Dino gets a two. Smash of Demolition found himself DQ’d at 9:00 eliminating him from competition. Both guys had to leave.
The Hitman comes in.
Bret Hart worked on Dynamite in the corner, a man he considered the best worker. Eventually Dynamite tagged in Toma.
Martel of Strike Force with an irish-whip and a backdrop. Martel goes for the Boston Crab and was clobbered by the Anvil.
Neidhart with a slingshot to Martel but he got his boot up in the corner.
Tito Santana (Strike Force) is put out by Jim Neidhart at the 12 minute mark after Neidhart took care of business.
Both Strike Force had to take the former champs serious now.
Valentine who barely got a chance to work here drops some weight on Roma. Anvil comes in a hits a stun gun on Roma.
Anvil holds him for a reverse thrust kick by Haku and only a two count, Roma showing toughness. Valentine with a single-leg trip to Roma and the
Hitman hits a back-breaker.
Ventura was absolutely right when Ventura said the needed to pin Powers and Roma due to the isolation. Roma somehow tags in but the Anvil regains control. Valentine goes to the top and drops on Powers until Bret come in and slingshots him until he misses a dropkick.
In comes Dynamite to a tremendous ovation and Bret kicks out. Hart backdropped. In comes Roma who missed an elbow and Haku met Brian of the Bee’s who hit a backdrop. Haku rammed into the head of Dynanmite.
A headbutt and Haku moves out of the way.
Amazing action, and workrate.
Bulldog powerslams the Hitman once tagged in.
Tag made as Haku come in the hard way.
Bulldog powerlammed Haku.
Dynamite tagged in and flying headbutt connects to Haku.
Dynamite might of got the worst of that one Monsoon speculated and it turns out he did
as a reverese thrust kick by Haku throws out Dynamite and the Bulldog’s are gone.
So around the twenty minute mark The Dynamite Kid representing the (British Bulldogs) is put out by Haku.
Dino Bravo drops Powers.
The Anvil and Bravo started to work together. The Hart Foundation showed where they excelled a a team progressing well and Bret slams his opponent’s back into the corner.
Valentine comes in and deliveres high knees. Bavo hits a side suplex on Santna incomes the Hammer who goes for thefigure four.
A sunetslip on Valentine out of no where gets him as the place erupts
Then at 24:00 Greg Valentine (New Dream Team) is put out by Paul Roma after a Diving Sunset Flip.
Tag made to jumping Jim and he hits a high knee to the forehedof the Anvil.
It doesen’t take a Rocket Scientist to learn who was doing the best work in this match, the Hart Foundation.
However at this moment the Anvil was being disected until the Hitman came in and turned the tide.
Bret so quick turns a leapfrog by Roma into an offenive jab to the gut. Tama comes in and works over Roma.
Double slingshot by the Islanders to Roma but he kicks out as Haku missed a legdrop. Jim of the bees drops a leg and then a facebuster.
The Hitman is back in the match which is always nice to see. Roma couldn’t put Bret away after a vertical suplex.
Tama comes in and the Islanders deliver a headbutt to Paul Roma but he hits a beautiful desperation arm-drag. Roma hit with a nice standing dropkick.
The Anvil runs over Roma and he gets a two.
Anvil tags in Hart to take care of usiness and with Poewers in his hands tags in Brunzell of the bees. He rams Hart into the corner. A mid-air collisio between both men.
Brunzell in control of Bret is dropkicked by Haku for extra momentum behind the official’s back.
So Bret Hart of the (Hart Foundation) is put out by “Jumping” Jim Brunzell after a Roll over around the thirty one minute mark.
The chant of weasel filled the area as this Classic continued. Haku hits a perfect shoulder breaker to Brunzell. A slap on the traps but Brunzell got some momentum to get out of it.
The climax becomes enthralling as it goes back and forth between Haku and Brunzell, a suplex by Haku gains him a two count.
A powerslam b Roma but Tama makes the save. The Islanders double-team. Roma managed out his corner and he looked for a hot tag to Blair and got it.
Tama sent Blair to the ropes and hit a spinning thrust kick but not before tunting. A missed elbowdrop and Blair hits a backrop and scoops Haku upon entering and slams the Islanders together head-first.
A dropkick but Haku makes the save.
Out of no where a man posing as Blair with a mask made the pinfall.
It went down as that in the end at the 37:00 mark Tama of The Islanders were defeated by B. Brian Blair after a Sunset Flip.
The Survivor’s were Killer Bees and Young Stallions.
Amazing workrate for a match as lengthy as this.
This is a match of the year candidate.
It really felt like it was in an nwa match in a wwf territory which is pure win.
This Classic is one of the very best Survivor Series Elimination Matches of all time.
4) Main Event- André the Giant, One Man Gang, King Kong Bundy, Butch Reed, and Rick Rude (with Bobby Heenan and Slick) vs Hulk Hogan, Paul Orndorff, Don Muraco, Ken Patera, and Bam Bam Bigelow (with Oliver Humperdink)
The Main Event was here and the Hulk and Andre feud was still as big as ever in 87.
The match began with Muraco and Rude exchanging right’s in the corner.
Mr. Orndorff comes in next and takes care of Rude with some power moves.
Next in is Hulk to a huge ovation as expected tearing the Ravishing one apart. Rude was slammed down and Bam Bam then planted himself down.
Bam Bam scooped up Rude and hit a gorilla press. In comes Patera and all five members of the face team had now disected Rude.
The first elimination came when the Hulkster pinned Butch Reed in about three minutes with a legdrop.
Somehow Rude managed a tag to the Natural Butch Reed who got more shots from Bam Bam, Muraco and then Orndorff. Butch Reed ran into Hogan’s boot on the apron. A double clothesline sent the Natural down and we had out first pinfall.
Andre said he wanted Hogan and Hulk said he wa legal but Marella had none of it saving the drama for later and in came Ken Patera.
Patera was waved over by Andre.
After Andre was actually brought down a bit other heels like the Gang and Rude came in to gt beaten on by guys like Orndorff and Muraco who made frequent tags.
Patera worked on the Gang until he almost scored a three after a crossbody off the ropes. High knee but evebtually One Man Gang’s power overtook him and in the corner Rude
choked out Patera behind the official.
Gang applied a fron facelock wearing him down.
Unbelieveable crowd support here for Patera but the Gang had done his damage. Ventura on commentary wisely points out that the Gang is being isolated by the heels. Patera out of desperation tried to fight back but a splash off the ropes from the Gang takes him out.
So the second elimination came when The One Man Gang eliminated Ken Patera after a 747 Splash at around the eight minute mark.
Reed and Patera are gone, one from each team.
Four on Four, Hulk came in right away to take down One Man Gang until Bigelow tagged in. Bam Bam with some hard forearm shots until he met the Gang head to head.
Rude and Orndorff went at it. Orndorff took him apart and he wanted a piledriver until from the outside Rude had some help. Rude took advantage.
At the ten minute mark Rude eliminated Ondorff at around the ten minute mark after a pinfall with a rollup after interference from Bundy.
Rude posed. The Rock came in and took apart Rude, Bam Bam came in and suplexed him, Hogan took out Rude with a high knee.
Muraco back in and with Hogan’s help took out Rude to the fan’s delight, fast, exciting action, three on three.
So Muraco put out Rude a minute later after a slam.
Big Bundy, One Man Gang and Andre were left for the heels while Hogan, Bam Bam and Muraco were left for the faces.
Heels caught Muraco in the corner. One Man Gang and Muraco went blow for blow.
Muraco tried to slam Gang but couldn’t hold him, somehow he managed to stay alive adding to the drama.
This time, The Rock isn’t so lucky.
Two minutes later that same 747 splash One Man Gang utilized earlier came into play ths time eliminating Muraco at 13:00.
The Rock is gone.
Hogan complains that Andre on the apron helped out. Three on two. Bam Bam is in now and if he’s gone, it’s all up to Hulk.
Bundy threw Bam Bam to the floor.
Ventura says Heenan’s team has saved Hogan for last as it’s all part of his master plan. Bundy took apart Bam Bam and eventually missed an elbow shot.
Andre went to hit Bam Bam and with his agility he rolled over and ducked the tag bringing in Hulk.
The fans went wild!
Hogan and Andre!
Hogan gave Andre the Giant shots!
The Hulkster cleaned house on the other side and was about to set up Andre for a legdrop but Bundy brought him out of the ring to the floor.
Hogan slammed Bundy to the floor. Hogan slams him again.
However a couple of minutes later Hulk Hogan is Counted out after Bundy and the Gang prevented Hogan from re-entering the ring.
Fans were shocked to say the least and they treated this with a chorus of boo’s.
Bam Bam is the only babyface left.
Bigelow took apart Bundy with a clothesline and an elbow shot but he kicked out. Everone in attendance still shocked Hogan was gone was fully behind Bam Bam now who catches Bundy with a dropkick.
Around the 18 minute mark a Pinfall following a Slingshot from Bam Bam to Bundy took away King Kong Bundy.
Bam Bam now had two obstacles to overcome, The Gang and The Giant. No easy task for a man as fatigued as Bam Bam.
The One Man Gang having a “field day” according to Monsoon taking down a fatigued Bam Bam. Bigelow fought back but slowly.
A few minutes later One Man Gang tried his splah but Bam Bam avoided it and got him!
The place went crazy.
One on one.
The Giant stepped up and took on Bam Bam.
No one could beat the Giant, surely. The fans were on the side of Bam Bam though.
Bigelow used his unique speed and agility to escape the big guy. Bam Bam runs into the corner and The Giant drove his shoulder into Bam Bam.
A front facelock into a double underhook.
In the end at around the 22:00 minute mark André The Giant defeated Bam Bam by a butterfly suplex to become the lone Survivor keeping him look strong.
It was quite the shock to see Hulk eliminated here earlier on.
Hogan came back with the title and took down the Giant and the fans roared so despite the heel winning the fans left on a positive note.
This match was unpredictable and booked extremely well. Terrific old school fun.
Final Rating for WWF Survivor Series 1987 = 8/10
This show was the original, the one that started it all. For that reason it’s of course special but it didn’t have a single bad match on the card. Now there were only four matches but one was a classic, a couple were great and one was rather solid. This is a great event to pick up, especially if you like the old school Elimination style matches.