WWF Wrestlemania 9
I love when WWF shows would start with music straight out of Lethal Weapon. Gorilla Monsoon is the host, who introduces us to the latest member of the WWF broadcast team: Jim Ross. Caesar and Cleopatra make their way to ringside via elephant. Isn't it weird that baby elephants are like....small adult elephants? Macho is brought out by some hot broads. Brain comes out on a camel. Backwards. Lmao at Macho pulling up Brain's toga so everyone can see his balls. While giving the thumbs up.
Shawn Michaels vs Tatanka WWF Intercontinental Championship
Luna Vachon is making her WWF debut as HBK's manager. Sensational Sherri comes out to watch the match, looking STACKED. Tatanka is still undefeated, and has 2 wins over HBK recently. Things start pretty slow with headlocks and whatnot, then Tatanka gets a big flurry of offense starting with a super arm drag. After a DDT, HBK hurts his shoulder, and that becomes Tatanka's focus. Luckily, HBK's feet work. Superkick. OUTTA NOWHERE. Tatanka fires up and scores a series of near falls. HBK pulled the ref out of the ring at one point. Tatanka hit the End of the Trail, but the ref called for the bell, meaning Tatanka wins via DQ, and HBK retains his title. This is EASILY the best match of Tatanka's career by a very, very wide margin. After the match, Luna attacked Sherri. Tatanka helped her to the back.
TO THE MEAN GENE. The Steiners are his guests. They're going to make their first (and last) WM a memorable one.
Headshrinkers vs Steiner Brothers
SST/Steiners feud is reignited! With JR calling the action, too. Scott and Fatu begin the match. Things get heated in a hurry. Unsurprisingly, things get heated with Samu and Rick, as well. A lot of stiff shots in this, as you'd expect. Scott takes an INSANE hot shot that sees him straight up take a header over the ropes and lawn dart to the floor. Jesus Christ. That's followed with Afa breaking a kendo stick on his back. Man, if this was a jobber match, that would have been the finish. Obviously after such a horrible bump, Scott is FIP for quite a while. Rick finally gets that hot tag and makes the cardinal mistake of trying to double noggin knocker two Samoans. They immediately double headbutt him. YA DUMBSHIT. Then SST randomly attempt a Doomsday Device, which is countered by a powerslam from Rick. I think that was first done to Bobby Eaton in 1991 or 1992. Scott hits a looooooool worthy Frankensteiner on Samu OUTTA NOWHERE to win the match. Very fun, very stiff.
TO THE MEAN GENE. Doink is the guest, and he's desecrated the visage of Julius Caesar.
Crush vs Doink
Doink tries to play a prank on Crush by squirting him with water before the match, but all it did was piss Crush off. Crush beats the clown's ass around the ring and ringside for a few minutes until Doink hits a desperation rope stunner. From there, it seems like a lot of his focus is on the head and neck of Crush. Doink keeps trying to sneak under the ring, and then there is a ref bump. A second Doink shows up OUTTA NOWHERE and blasts Crush with a fake arm. The two Doinks do a mirror act, and the real Doink pins Crush. A second ref (Fonzie) comes out to tell Joey Marella to check under the ring. IT WAS AN ILLUSION! The second Doink is nowhere to be found.
TO THE TODD. Todd is in the cheap seats , asking what the Japanese photographers saw.
Razor Ramon vs Bob Backlund
Bob seems so excited for this. This could have been a weirdly interesting match, but instead it's a sub 4 minute match ending with a small package OUTTA NOWHERE from Razor. I think Razor was super sick or something the day before, though.
TO THE MEAN GENE. It's Money Inc.! Ted bringing out his white money tux. #bigfightfeel.
Money Inc. vs Mega Maniacs WWF Tag Team Championships
Vlad the Superfan sighting! That mother fucker is EVERYWHERE. This is Hogan's first match back since WM 8. Well, one house show match a few weeks before this, but this is his official return after a year off. Beefcake has had all of 2 matches in 3 years, so this should be something. How Jack Tunney signed this to be a title match is anyone's guess. A team with a combined 4 years of time off who hadn't had a match together in 3 years. Why do they deserve a title shot? Some serious questions need to be asked about Jack Tunney's match making. Hogan feels SO out of place here, too. It really felt like the WWF had moved on in his absence, and now he's back and it's like the first time you go back home after moving out. Hogan has an eye that is all fucked up and stitched up. The real story has been disputed for years. Some say it was a boating accident. Some say it was a fight with Randy Savage. The storyline explanation is that Hogan had a weightlifting accident. God, that Beefcake suicide note promo on Raw. Who the fuck cleared that shit? Beefcake is wearing a titanium face mask after destroying his face in a parasailing accident back in 1990. Storyline it was because of Money Inc busting his face with IRS' briefcase. Man, Hogan looks smaller than he did at WM 8, and he looked half as big at WM 8 than he did at WM 7. That damn steroid trial. Let's get things clear, here. Hogan and Beefcake are part timers at best. Ted is on his last legs as a competitor. Which makes IRS the best talent in this match. Money Inc. try to leave, only for an announcement that they'd lose the titles if they walked out being made. Hogan actually ends up as the FIP in this match. I'd love to shit on this match for how garbage it is, but the crowd is very hot for it. The Halliburton is gold for WM, and it finds its way to Beefcake's back. Bruti's mask comes off, and then there is a ref bump. The mask itself becomes a weapon used by Hogan. Lmao, Jimmy Hart turns his jacket inside out, which happens to be striped, and then he counts the pin. Hogan and Beefcake then celebrate as if they actually won because their manager counted the pin. A second ref comes down and disqualifies Hogan for using the mask. About fucking time Hogan got disqualified for cheating. These fucking dolts. Jimmy convinces Hulk/Brutus not to attack Danny Davis, so he throws him out to the ring himself. And then the Mega Maniacs celebrate with Hogan's music as if they actually won. "Time to party!" Post match sees them open the Halliburton, which reveals a brick, some tax forms, and a bunch of cash.
TO THE TODD. Todd catches up with Natalie Cole, who did NOT get any of the money from the Mega Manaics, and then Dan Reichartz, CEO of Caesars Palace.
TO THE PERFECT GENE. Mr. Perfect! Lex Luger has been KOing people left and right lately, including WWF Champion Bret Hart this morning at a brunch event. But Mr. Perfect is perfect, so he's not worried about it. Loooool, Perfect fucks up trying to say the Narcissist AND Lex Luger. Perfection.
Lex Luger vs Mr. Perfect
Perfect frustrates Lex with his speed in the first few minutes. Lex's power and cheap shots change things. Perfect works the leg. After some gnarly chops from Perfect, Lex does a strong Irish whip that aggravates the chronic back injury of Perfect's. It's like we have a match going on here or something. Perfect makes a come back, but Lex does a backslide and actually gets PERFECT's legs in the ropes for leverage to steal the win. I don't think I've ever actually seen that as a finish before. After the match, Lex KO'd Perfect with the metal forearm. Unless Lex has a match with Bret somewhere floating around on an old Colosseum Home Video tape from a very specific 4 month period, this is for sure Lex's best WWF match. And probably Perfect's best between 1991-1993 that didn't involve Bret Hart.
TO THE BACK. Mr. Perfect finds Lex and continues the fight. HBK joined in and attacked Perfect. Pefect Ls.
Giant Gonzalez vs Undertaker
Taker comes out on a Roman funeral chariot, and has a vulture with him. A vulture that doesn't appear to be happy to be there. Man, Gonzalez really was something. That fucking monster. Taker is legitimately 6'10ish and is standing on the second rope. The distance he is above Giant from that point is less than the distance Giant is above Taker when they're both on the mat. Lmao, blatant low blow from Gonzalez. Dead balls walkin'. Petty as fuck. It's a shame that Gonzalez can't really do much, but Taker is really bumping his ass off for him. Giant has the GOAT Punch Out selling. Harvey throws a chloroform rag into the ring while Giant headbutts Paul Bearer. Fonzie sees Giant trying to kill Taker with this, but doesn't immediately call for the bell. He just lets him use it for a while, then gives him a 5 count and disqualifies him. Taker gets taken away on a strecher, Fonzie gets chokeslammed, then Taker returns from his grave, much to the giant's chagrin. Taker puts him down with a flying clothesline and police escort the big man out.
TO THE MEAN BROTHERJACKDUDE. Hulk Hogan is here to give his thoughts on the main event. Between Hogan's disgusting eye and bumbling over his promo, this shit is weird. "Ya know, Bret Hart, a warning to the wise, brother. You're a brother, you're a Hulkamaniac, and since so many people are stepping over the line, I want you to watch this Yokozuna and Mr. Fuji like a cat, brother. I want you to watch every move. And I also want you to know, brother, that me and my Hulkamaniacs are on your side. But as I looked into the eyes of Bret Hart just a few minutes ago, Mean Gene, I know the power of Hulkamania. I know the greatness of Hulkamania. And as I looked into Bret Hart's eyes, I even questioned Hulkamania's own greatness. That's why right now, Bret Hart, I'm issuing the challenge to either you or the Jap, brother. Whoever wins the WWF title, I want the first shot at it. But let me tell you something, Mean Gene: With me, all my Hulkamaniacs, and the attitude that Bret Hart has, I guarantee ya, dude, the WWF title is staying right here in the WWF, right here in the USofA. And whatcha gonna do?"
Did this mother fucker really waltz back in after a year, put himself over, then say he was going to take Bret's title, while also insinuating that Bret was a dirty American, AND a Hulkamaniac who will need Hulkamania to win? This fuckin' guy.
Yokozuna vs Bret Hart WWF Championship
So Bret's already had a pretty rough day, getting KO'd by Lex at the god damn brunch. Imagine getting knocked out at a BRUNCH. By a forearm, not mimosas. Oh shit, Bret starts the match with a shotgun dropkick. OUTTA NOWHERE. Fists of fury, dawgs. It doesn't work out. But what does work is Bret using the ropes to trip and tie Yoko up, getting him down on the mat where he can do some damage. Of course, Yoko being on his feet again negates that advantage completely. But LOL at the USA chants. Y'all know Bret is Canadian. So this crowd is cheering a for a Canadian who is facing an American born Samoan pretending to be Japanese in a a fake Rome in the middle of Las Vegas. Wrasslin. Brain actually brings up how stupid the chant was. Bret gets multiple come back spots, only to get crushed every time. Using his speed to confuse and frustrate Yoko every chance he gets. A turnbuckle gets exposed, and Yoko's fat face finds its way to hit it. Bret then attempts the Sharpshooter, and actually gets it on. Fuji throws salt in Bret's eyes to break the hold. Yokozuna pins Bret. New champion! Hulk Hogan storms to the ring, trying to tell Earl Hebner what happened. Mr. Fuji and Yoko actually challenge Hogan. They'll even put the title on the line. RIGHT NOW. Bret tells him to do it.
Hulk Hogan vs Yokozuna WWF Championship
Fuji accidentally salts Yoko. Ax Bomba. Leg drop. New champion! Say what you want about the booking decision here, Caesars Place lost their shit for Hogan's win. For sure the biggest reaction of the night.
Not only is this not the all time worst show that people have been claiming for years, it's actually quite good. Certainly better than the years before and the next few after.
Tatanka and Yoko had their career matches, Lex had his WWF career match, Crush had probably his best match, the outdoor venue was neat. The effort was certain there for this show. A bunch of angles were set up for the next 5 months of TV: Pefect vs HBK, Luna vs Sherri and presumably Tatanka and Luna's new guy, more fuckery with Crush/Doink, gimmick fuckery with Taker/Giant Gonzalez, Steiners vs Money Inc for the titles, Lex vs Bret, Hogan vs Yoko, and eventually Hogan vs Bret. Now, wrestling is wrestling and Hogan is Hogan, so some plans changed, but just about everything on the show set up one or two new angles coming out of it. Well booked and well performed show.
I think it's unfair to judge this show based on what DIDN'T happen after than hwat happened on the show itself, which was TV through August set up with multiple intersecting angles all leading to Hogan putting Bret over to truly usher in the New Generation. Now, Hogan certainly Hogan'd and ruined some of the plans, and Bret definitely got the shaft in the end, but on this night, in front of this crowd, let me tell you something, brother, the people were happy to see Hulk Hogan as WWF Champion again, dude.