Saturday Night’s Main Event – Episode 3
November 2, 1985
Rich: Let’s not sugar coat it, the first two episodes of Saturday Night’s Main Event sucked. Sure, it was a different era and a 15-minute bearhug was able to entertain us endlessly as long as we were seeing the stars but by any measure they weren’t great shows. On paper, episode three looks to be the best yet with Terry Funk making his debut, Randy Savage vs. Tito Santana and Ricky Steamboat…. oh, he’s against Mr. Fuji, nevermind.
Larry: Fuck it, I actually enjoyed the first episode of SNME, but it certainly wasn’t any kind technical in-ring masterpiece. This episode though, looks great on paper. Most importantly, it’s the in-ring debut of Randy ‘Macho Man’ Savage on this card. For those that don’t know, I’m a huge Savage mark, which makes this show a de facto must-see for your boy.
It’s the Halloween episode of Saturday Night’s Main Event, let’s get right to it!
Rich: We start the show off with Bobby Heenan practicing a pumpkin dunk, think apple bobbing but instead of apples you have pumpkins and instead of water you have chocolate for some reason. Maybe it was an 80s thing, I dunno?
We get a bunch of pre-show promos from Hogan, Andre, Piper, Ventura and more. The best part for me is Ventura trying to dress in a ridiculous Halloween costume but looks like standard Jesse, he may even be conservative.
Terry Funk can’t be bothered to wear a costume but he’s got a mouth full of chaw, that-a boy. Back to the arena we see a kid wearing the most hideous thing I’ve ever laid eyes on:
What the fuck is that?!? I know it’s supposed to be Hogan but that makes the famous Bret Hart mask look presentable. That thing is going to give me nightmares.
Larry: The GenPop is out in full force for the Halloween Edition of SNME. The live crowd shots of this show are amazing. Look at some of these fuckin’ guys! Including, but not limited to, the guy with the GIANT HOGAN HEAD MASK. A true VOW follower — show yourself and get a shout out on Twitter! That thing is the only thing creepier than the WON/F4W-famous ThunderLips Doll. It’s like Hogan’s face melted.
Terry Funk vs. Junkyard Dog
Rich: This wasn’t bad. The crowd was molten so it’s hard to say it was bad at any level, clearly for the its time it was super over. JYD just isn’t very good despite Funk’s best efforts. Jimmy Hart (manager of Funk) played a huge role throughout the match and he’s one of the best. Funk won after hitting JYD with the megaphone and the crowd HATED him. It’s not a match I’d ever watch again, but it works in the context of this show. We also got to see Jimmy Hart’s underwear, so at minimum this has to be two Hogan heads. TWO HOGAN HEADS~!
Larry: Terry Funk opens the show in rare form. Not only does he spit some chaw at a camera, but he wants to finish branding the black guy. Vince loves his not-so-subtle racism. But The Dog, he is all business. The second he lays his fist into Funk’s face, the crowd gets white hot. They want all of life’s evils to happen to Funk and not only Funk, but his entire family. But, Funk here was pretty awesome, eating all of JYD’s offense. Every time the Funksters gets some offense in, the crowd wants to slit their wrists. So much heat when Funk wins, but crowd comes alive when JYD saves himself and gives Funk and Jimmy Hart their comeuppance, including branding Jimmy Hart’s ass. This was short and fun. Crowd made this match come alive.
Rich: Pie-eating contests time. Iron Shiek is in a custom Batman outfit with Nikoli Volkoff as Robin. Randy Savage is dressed as Tarzan and Elizabeth’s Jane outfit turned millions of American boys into men this night. Of course, Tito Santana is Zoro.
Larry: THESE COSTUMES. What in the fuck is Mean Gene wearing? Capt. Lou with an extended squash over Bundy in the pie eating contest. Pictures are the only thing that could do this scene justice.
Rich: We get a flashback to Uncle Elmer’s wedding and the whole redneck crew is sitting in the ring waiting for Roddy Piper. Jesse Ventura comes ringside and I think we have a match between the Hillbilly’s and Piper at the next SNME but nothing confirmed.
Back to Mene Gene and we have the pumpkin dunk and holy god Elizabeth’s Jane costume. If you’ve never participated in a pumpkin dunk contest you apparently stick your head into a giant vat of chocolate and grab mini Pumpkins by your stem. Doesn’t look like fun whatsoever, what would be fun is Elizabe… sorry, you have to see it, seriously, she’s never looked better.
Larry: SPOILER ALERT! This program is either one of the dumbest Vince has ever done or one of the most self-aware. I want the heels to absolutely destroy these fuckin Duck Dynasty rip-offs. What GenPop’r in their right mind would cheer for these inbred fucks? Can’t wait for next week to see Roddy, The Body, and Ace to cheat their way to a flawless victory. LIZ’S LEGS. I say God Damn. That’s all I got as the heels tie it up in the Halloween Olympics, 1-1 as Bobby The Brain bobs seven pumpkins out of a pool of chocolate. Wut?
Hulk Hogan & Andre the Giant vs. King Kong Bundy and Big John Studd
Rich: Vince said this had the potential to be the greatest tag team match ever. And guess what, it wasn’t that, that was Godwins vs. Smoking Gunns but this was really solid. Yes, seriously, it had a ton of action, way more action than you would expect from these guys. Andre was barely in, Hogan was moving around with some grace, Bundy was solid and Studd was moving around quite well. Why was this match good? I don’t know but it was!
Larry: Hogan is eating his bandana on his way to the ring…he means business. He has got no time for trash like Bundy and Studd and their heel tactics to get disqualified against Andre. Speaking of cheaters, Andre would choke Bundy with his straps once again. For two good ol boy faces, these two guys cheat an awful lot. At least Jesse notices. Opening stages of the match have the faces with the advantage with Hogan keeping up a fast pace Yeah, really. Then Andre gets caught in the ropes and the heels go HAM on Hogan and they beat the shit out of Andre leading to another disqualification. I feel ripped off. There should be a huge blow off tag match with these guys at some point, but I don’t recall ever seeing one.
Randy Savage vs. Tito Santana
Larry: Tito Santana…you are nothin’ but garbage.
Savage gets all the buys. ALL OF THEM.
That was the go-home promo leading up this event on Prime Time Wrestling. Savage hadn’t been in the WWF for more than six months at this point. In June, he went through the ‘Hottest Free Agent – Choose The Manager’ gimmick which led to the debut of Liz in late August. Billed as one of the top free agents in all of wrestling, he had been squashing jobbers like Swede Hanson, Rick McGraw, Special Delivery Jones and Mario Mancini for months on the house show circuit and getting promo time on TV. He would lose to Santana in Puerto Rico a week before this event leading to this title match. It would be the first taste of Macho Madness in the ring for a large portion of the WWF’s national audience. His in-ring Rookie Card, if you will. Anyway, Savage and Tito would run the B-circuit with a variation of this match hundreds of times. The crowd was hot for the match and it all worked, but it was three minutes. One Hogan Head for each minute…for historical purposes. A week later, Savage would wrestle in his first WWF pay-per-view. The rematch to this double-countout match would happen in February and would appear on Prime Time Wrestling…Savage would beat Santana for the Intercontinental Title and hold it until WrestleMania III in the famous Steamboat match.
History beckons the Macho Man!
Rich: It’s hard to properly rate this one because you look at the two guys, you assume it’s going to be good and hell, it was really good but man oh man was it short. Everything here was hot and the crowd was super into Tito and super hot on Savage, it’s a real testamant to how WWE use to create stars and how the cream really did rise to the top. You can tell, even from this three minute match, that Savage was going to be something special here. Anyway, the match itself, it was solid, good back and forth action… it’s about what you would expect from these two.
Ricky Steamboat vs. Mr. Fuji
Rich: For those unfamiliar with a Kung-Fu match it is essentially two wrestlers (at least one must be of Asian descent) doing a normal wrestling match except the match starts with them doing the Praying Mantis pose. Oh and they train like Karate guys do, you know, breaking bricks, wooden boards, screaming, salt, all that good Asian stuff. This match was horrendous, just god awful. As mentioned, they started off doing “Kung-Fu” things but it was just a normal match after the first few seconds. Steamboat did what he could but Fuji was just the dirt worst at this time. This was awful.
Larry: This is a KUNG FU match. Mr. Fuji really did suck back then. Like, really bad. Steamboat though…the man can go. Not even a million beautiful Steamboat crossbodies off the top could save this shit show.
Larry: We end the show with Mean Gene clearly copping a feel of Liz. And that’s all I got.
Rich: Larry isn’t exaggerating, people freaked out about Jerry Lawler staring at Paige’s ass… wow, go watch this. This is a good 15 seconds of Gene clearly staring at Liz’s ass as she walked away. Mind you, he wasn’t just in the background, he was the focal point. You had the guy who is supposed to be talking to you the audience instead staring at Elizabeth’s derrière.
That’s it for Episode 3, join us THIS SATURDAY for a recap of Episode 4.