Revisiting a WWE’s Survivor Series tradition that began on Thanksgiving Day 1987

November 23, 2017 - WWE

As we prepared for Thanksgiving on Thursday, it gives us a eventuality to revisit a impulse in time 30 years ago, when a initial Survivor Series eventuality reached airwaves in a dusk hours of Thanksgiving Day. The categorical eventuality was a review that would turn a tradition — a five-on-five rejecting tab review between teams captained by Hulk Hogan and Andre a Giant. The dual had met several months before during WrestleMania III, and a eventuality was a approach to serve their argument with another large payoff.

WWE on ESPN contributors Sean Coyle and Matt Willis sat down and watched a categorical eventuality of that initial Survivor Series together. Cue it adult on a WWE Network, and follow along.

Event: 1987 Survivor Series
Location: Richfield Coliseum; Richmond, OH
Date: Nov 26, 1987
The Matchup: Hulk Hogan, Paul Orndorff, Bam Bam Bigelow, Don Muraco and Ken Patera contra Andre a Giant, One Man Gang, King Kong Bundy, Rick Rude and “The Natural” Butch Reed

Coyle: Before we burst into a initial categorical eventuality in Survivor Series history, let’s start with a integrate of records to mangle a ice.

– The initial 4 Survivor Series events were comprised of usually normal Survivor Series rejecting matches (1987-90).

– On tip of being a initial non-WrestleMania PPV in WWE history, this uncover also went head-to-head with Starrcade.

Willis: I’ve always enjoyed carrying pay-per-views with a thesis like this. Especially with a stream priduct, with large matches frequently given divided on Raw and SmackDown, this unequivocally sets these events detached from weekly programming.

Coyle: Consider this PPV featured dual other 5-on-5 Survivor Series matches, and afterwards a 10-on-10 version, this authorised a lot of talent to be featured in a singular way

Willis: Tag group wrestling has rebounded over a past integrate of years, yet usually dual or 3 years ago, it would’ve been extraordinary to consider that there was a time when WWE had 10 dedicated tab teams to put on a 20-man review like that.

Coyle: Couldn’t determine more. You prepared to flog this thing off, Willis? Main eventuality time?

Willis: Hogan-Andre, Part II. we can’t wait.

Coyle: Let’s do it.

The heels lead a approach to a ring

Coyle: Look during Rude, oozing with charisma. Doesn’t need to contend a word. Wearing tights featuring trade lights and travel signs.

Willis: Rude was implausible — usually a facial countenance was adequate for him to be a good heel. And Bobby Heenan following right behind. He was a manager on 3 of a 4 matches on a label this night.

Coyle: And incorporating his rivalries into his attire. That’s creation right three.

Willis: Ahead of his time.

With Rude, King Kong Bundy, One Man Gang and Butch Reed in a ring, Heenan takes a microphone to deliver Andre a Giant.

“Ladies and gentleman,” pronounced Heenan. “And we use that tenure loosely.”

Coyle: Here comes Andre. There was never was and will never again be a some-more intimidating steer in pro wrestling.

Andre a Giant had mislaid to Hogan during WrestleMania III, after winning his matches during a initial dual WrestleManias.

Willis: Imagine if Andre was during his earthy rise for this feud.

Coyle: Even where he was during that point, he took Hogan to a subsequent level. Speaking of Hogan, now we’re saying Okerlund talk a fired-up Hogan and his group before a match.

Willis: Hogan’s shtick always worked best when he was conflicting a widespread force, like One Man Gang, Big Boss Man or Earthquake. Speaking of Hogan, a border of his bandana is in his eyes. we don’t consider we could hoop that.

“I’m inspired and I’m here to survive,” pronounced Paul Orndorff.

“I’m here to bake this place down,” offering Bam Bam Bigelow.

Willis: Bigelow wrestling as a face, alongside Hogan, always struck me as a surprise. A big, nauseous male with conduct tattoos and a green demeanour on his face? As a babyface in a 1980s?

“Listen to a acclaim for Bam Bam,” Gorilla Monsoon said, on commentary.

“I don’t know why. He’s ugly,” Jesse Ventura weighed in.

Coyle: Yeah, Bam Bam was always in his component as a heel. we was always a large fan of his, though. Unique look, implausible athleticism for his size, and we was a large ECW guy, so we enjoyed his run there as well. He had a fun adversary with my guy, Taz.

Willis: Bigelow could even chuck in a moonsault or cartwheel. Also on a group was Mr. Wonderful, Paul Orndorff, a foe-turned-friend for this match. He famously conflicting Hogan and Mr. T (with Roddy Piper as his partner) during WrestleMania I.

Willis: It’s substantially best that Gang and Bigelow go full bodysuit. No approach to review to Rude and Muraco.

Coyle: True story. we always desired a abandon on Bigelow’s attire.

Willis: The gait of this review has been fantastic, and a throng is totally into it.

Coyle: Yeah, there is no slack in this one.

Willis: Patera’s perm doesn’t mount adult conflicting Rude’s perm. He finished a good run during it though.

Coyle: As shortly as we contend there’s no delayed down, Patera gets stranded in a rest reason with One Man Gang.

Coyle: Multiple rest holds. Patera fights back, yet One Man Gang continues to browbeat and Patera is a initial to go out on his team.

One Man Gang eliminates Patera with a clothesline.

Willis: Not a cleanest finisher. Gang gets Patera with a feared combo of a clothesline, followed by collapsing onto your opponent.

Coyle: Hogan came in quickly and now Bam Bam is in there holding it to One Man Gang.

Willis: The throng pops outrageous for Bigelow removing tagged in. He debuted with a lot of fanfare, as managers were competing to get his services.

Coyle: A newly-turned babyface, Orndorff, is in there with Rude now, and again he’s on fire. He brought a ton of energy into this match.

Rude rolls adult Orndorff, with a handful of tights, for a pin.

Coyle: But…it wasn’t enough. Rude rolled him adult in stereotypical heel fashion, holding a tights.

Willis: Orndoff had usually called for a piledriver, too.

Coyle: Hogan’s group continues to use a discerning tab techniques.

Muraco hits Rude with a powerslam, dusk adult a eliminations with dual apiece.

Willis: Rude roughly kicked out, yet fell plant from a contingent of descent maneuvers from a Hogan team.

Coyle: The good thing about this review is a delayed build to a Hogan and Andre encounter.

Willis: Andre has let his teammates take a complicated lifting.

One Man Gang hits a large dash onto Muraco for a elimination.

Willis: Hogan angry to a arbitrate about a shot from Andre that led to a splash. But Hogan’s strike a authorised male from a outward all match. I’m job out a hypocrisy.

Coyle: We are down to Hogan and Bigelow contra Andre, Gang and Bundy. Two-on-three.

Willis: Big strike by Bigelow from a Bundy clothesline. Sent him conduct over heels.

Coyle: Bam Bam with a good display in this match. He had all a collection to be towering to a subsequent level, yet never utterly reached those heights.

Willis: Especially interconnected adult conflicting 3 bigger heels.

This was Bigelow’s PPV debut. He’d also seem in a WrestleMania IV WWE championship tournament.

Coyle: Still an overwhelming character. Bigelow is unequivocally holding a violence here.

Willis: we desired Bigelow’s work underneath Ted DiBiase in a Million Dollar Corporation. And it says something that WWE devoted him adequate to give him a WrestleMania mark conflicting Lawrence Taylor.

Coyle: That’s true, we was indeed during WrestleMania 11. we vividly remember amatory Shawn Michaels vs. Diesel. It was one of my favorite early matches as a kid.

Willis: Bigelow gets a tab to Hogan!

Coyle: We finally get Hogan vs. Andre here. They are chopping a ruin out of any other. Hogan is all dismissed adult here and cleaning house.

Willis: Neither wanted to give an in. to start, yet Hogan takes advantage by bashing Andre’s conduct in a corner.

Coyle: Bundy pulls Hogan out of a ring as a arbitrate starts a count. Huge impact by Hogan to Bundy on a outside, yet Hogan gets counted out.

Hogan’s rejecting leaves Bigelow 1-on-3 conflicting Andre, Bundy and Gang.

Coyle: This was a shocker to me, Hogan being left mid-match. It kept Hogan protected being separated by approach of a count out, yet this was always a large startle to me.

This was Hogan’s initial detriment during a PPV. He wouldn’t be pinned/submitted/counted out during another PPV until WrestleMania VI in 1990 conflicting a Ultimate Warrior (he had DQ and conflict stately eliminations before that).

Willis: Yeah, it was a approach to give Andre one behind though him wanting to pin Hogan.

Coyle: Exactly. It also gave Bigelow a theatre to uncover what he had. And now Bigelow is removing a improved of Bundy here with headbutts and dropkicks.

Bigelow gets a pin on Bundy after a slingshot dash from a apron.

Willis: That’s a pierce we didn’t see from even much-smaller superstars in those days. It’s a contrition to consider Bigelow’s initial run was finished reduction than a year later.

Coyle: One Man Gang is in there. we roughly forgot he was still in a match. He brought a rest binds in an differently fast-paced match.

Monsoon gives Bigelow a 50-1 shot to win. Ventura points out that a Minnesota Twins were 150-1 to win that year’s World Series. Which they did.

One Man Gang misses a top-rope splash, Bigelow covers him — now it’s usually him and Andre.

Willis: The Gang, not accurately seemly from a tip rope.

Coyle: No, not during all.

Willis: That was a feet-first splash.

Coyle: Bigelow is regulating his astonishing speed to avoid Andre, yet Andre catches adult to him.

Andre catches Bigelow with a double-underhook suplex to be a solitary survivor.

Hogan earnings to a ring and hits Andre with a belt, promulgation him from a ring.

“What a bruise loser!” cried Jesse Ventura.

Coyle: Andre gets a win, Hogan gets a celebration. It’s one approach to send a throng home happy, we guess.

Willis: Heenan’s revelation Hogan he needs to put a pretension on a line to get Andre. we wish he was mic’ed adult for this.

Coyle: Fun fact: Hogan never mislaid another normal Survivor Series review after this one. He won 4 straight. Not usually did he win 4 straight, he survived in any of those matches.

Willis: His usually singles review during Survivor Series was a flattering large one. In 1991, he mislaid a WWE Championship to a Undertaker.

Coyle: That was a initial Survivor Series to underline a non-traditional Survivor Series rejecting match.

Ventura comments that he was so disturbed that Hogan stole a spotlight that he competence come out of retirement to take his title.

“[Andre] survives everything. You wish him, we got him!” exclaimed Heenan. “Hogan, we miserable human.”

Coyle: This was a final pay-per-view eventuality before WrestleMania IV, when it was Randy Savage’s time to shine.

Willis: Savage participated in a opening match, heading his group to feat over a common led by a Honky Tonk Man.

Coyle: I enjoyed this initial Survivor Series categorical event. Was it a classic? No. But it was a well-designed match, well-worked for a many partial (minus One Man Gang’s try during a top-rope splash). It was what it should have been, entertaining.

Willis: Yeah, given a distance of a competitors involved, a review flew by. If we watch progressing matches on a card, a gait of this one was most some-more discerning and fun.

Coyle: Yeah, a 10-on-10 rejecting review progressing on a label lasted scarcely 40 minutes.

Willis: With a difference of Butch Reed, we consider everybody came out of this review looking flattering good.

Coyle: I agree. Again, with a difference of Gang’s top-rope flop.

Coyle: The initial Survivor Series was such an critical event, not usually since it went head-to-head with Starrcade, yet it got a round rolling in terms of some-more visit compensate per views. And demeanour where we are currently — pay-per-views are a cornerstone of a WWE’s storyline direction.

Willis: Yeah, and they did good going head-to-head with that Starrcade label in ’87, that was packed. But Vince McMahon pulled utterly a energy pierce and finished certain his eventuality was core stage, melancholy to secrete WrestleMania IV from wire providers who aired Starrcade. Can’t blink a impact of that, either.

The fallout continued as Andre degraded Hogan in a argumentative finish during The Main Event in February, yet was forced to empty a pretension when he attempted to sell it to a Million Dollar Man. In a 14-man, one-night contest during WrestleMania IV, Randy Savage won a WWE championship.

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