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WWF Saturday Night’s Main Event #4 – January 4, 1986

WWF Saturday Night’s Main Event #4 – January 4, 1986

After sitting through the worst episode of Monday Night RAW, I really needed entertaining to watch. So that brings us back to, in my opinion, the greatest era of professional wrestling ever, the eighties and SNME. Tonight’s episode comes to us from Tampa, Florida and our main event features Jesse Ventura back in the ring, along with Roddy Piper and Cowboy Bob Orton v. The Hillbillies in what should be a fun brawl. The only title that has changed hands is the Women’s title, which is now held by Moolah again, after the infamous Spider Lady incident. Otherwise the champions are, World Champion Hulk Hogan, Intercontinental Champion Tito Santana and Tag Team Champions Greg Valentine & Brutus Beefcake. So let’s get to tonight’s episode, which unfortunately is not from the original broadcast, but from 24/7 so hopefully nothing major is missing.

We open the show with Hulk Hogan & Mene Gene making smoothies outside the arena at poolside. Hulk calls it his patented Python Protein Drink and Gene takes a sip. We see Piper and Ventura surrounded by bikini girls as they watch the Hillbillies in the pool. Because this is from 24/7 our opening music is some horrid generic thing, sounds like it was made on a Casio keyboard by a six year old. Vince McMahon welcomes us to Tampa and then goes over the matches for tonight as Jesse Ventura comes to the broadcast booth. Jesse makes fun of the Hillbillies and says he was double teamed last week, and is the first announcer to step in the ring and take care of business. Ventura makes a few sports references, and Vince says he’s glad he doesn’t have to listen to Jesse, to which Jesse says he has a replacement for tonight, Bobby Heenan. Bobby joins Vince, and says he hopes he can live up to Jesse Ventura’s broadcast skills, as Vince sends it to Mene Gene. Gene is standing by with Roddy Piper & Bob Orton, Piper says the Hillbillies like to eat pig feet and play banjoes. Piper asks how people would like to have Uncle Elmer for an uncle, as Jesse joins his teammates. Ventura pats Gene on the head, and promises the Hillbillies are going down.

1. Roddy Piper, Bob Orton & Jesse Ventura v. Hillbilly Jim, Uncle Elmer & Cousin Luke. As team Piper comes out we get the flashback to the wedding, and then back to Gene with the Hillbillies. Jim says they are athletes and will behave as professionals, and says family pride is on the line. Cousin Luke? What happened to Cousin Junior? I need answers damn it! Once again the music is replaced with another song, which again sounds like a cheap Casio keyboard. Jesse starts out with Elmer, and Jesse distracts Elmer and pokes him in the eye, then punches and chokes him. Elmer gets one shot on Jesse and he’s on his knees, one more punch then a lifting choke, as Ventura is rammed into Jim’s boot and Jim comes in. Jim with a side headlock as Bobby starts to yell at Vince. Jesse gets a knee to the midsection of Jim and tags in Piper, Jim tags in Luke, and Piper offers a handshake. Luke grabs the hand and kicks Piper, but Piper fires back and tags in Orton. They do a double team, and then Orton starts to stomp on Luke before tagging Piper back in. Piper with a chop to the throat and a big knee takes down Luke. Piper with a side headlock, and Orton tagged in and unloads on Luke. Luke hits a headbutt as Jesse is tagged in, and Jesse with a snapmare, then walks over Cousin. Another quick tag, to Roddy Piper, as Ventura holds Luke, Piper slaps him, then another tag, and Piper holds Luke for Orton to come in off the top rope. Orton tags Piper back in, but Luke overpowers Piper in the corner and tags Jim, but the ref didn’t see it. Orton slams Luke and Piper back in, but Luke makes the tag to Elmer, and the ref sees it. Piper and Elmer slug it out, and Elmer gets the better of Piper, than locks in the bearhug. Piper pokes the eyes and all six men in the ring. The Hillbillies knock Piper’s team out of the ring as we go to commercial. We come back and all six in the ring again, as Heenan blames the Hillbillies for breaking the rules. Piper with a series of headbutts on Jim, but Jim returns fire and Piper slaps Jim multiple times. Jim responds with an armbar, but Piper gets Jim in the corner and tags in Ventura. Ventura works the arm of Jim and Orton back in for a few forearms, but Piper back in. Jim avoids the shot, and Luke tagged in. Luke a house of fire opens up on all three men, Piper behind Luke and gets a sleeper. All six in the ring again, as Jesse getting crushed by Elmer in the corner, as he ref is with Jim, Orton uses the cast on Luke. Piper locks the sleeper back on, and the ref counts Luke out. 3.25/5 a fun match, which was chaotic and entertaining. It was a lot better than expected considering the Hillbillies are not great wrestlers, and Jesse didn’t wrestle often back then, but I enjoyed the match. Jesse comes over to Heenan and Vince, and thanks Heenan for his work on the microphone. Jesse tells Vince he’s going to be unemployed and Heenan will take his place. We now go back outside to Mene Gene who’s running a waterslide competition between Jimmy Hart & JYD as we get highlights from last month. Jimmy says at the last SNME Dog humiliated him, and tonight he’s going to humiliate JYD. Dog says he has one stipulation; Jimmy has to wear the red underwear. The open the gates, and Jesse says JYD got a false start and an unfair lead. Jesse is at poolside with Terry Funk, and says someone at the top gave JYD a head start. Jesse asks Terry what he’s doing at pool side and Terry says tonight when he wins the World title and the press takes his picture he wants a great tan. Terry says he will be on the cover of Sports Illustrated, and Jesse says SI is not there, and Terry threatens SI. Jesse sends it to Gorilla Monsoon who shows highlights of the Funk/Hogan match from Denver where Funk knocked out Hogan with the branding iron, and then branded Hulk. From there we go to Gene with the Hulkster, as Gene asks if he has any plans for revenge. Hulk says he has a special surprise for Funk, JYD will be in his corner and JYD says he will keep Jimmy Hart from interfering.

2. Hulk Hogan v. Terry Funk. Funk already in the ring as Hulk and Dog come to the ring, Hart and Funk bail out. JYD gets a hold of Jimmy and pushes him into a chair and stands over him as we go to commercial. We come back as the bell rings, and they lock up, and Terry whipped into the corner, then the opposite corner as Hogan follows with a clothesline and Funk to the cement. Hulk looks weird in light blue shorts, just seems wrong on so many levels. Funk is back in the ring, as Jesse calls him middle aged and crazy, Funk chops the Champ and gets whipped in, then trips over Hulk and almost fall out of the ring, so Hulk clotheslines him out. Funk back in the cement, as JYD stands over Jimmy Hart, Funk slowly gets back in the ring. Hulk with a side headlock, and Funk pushes him in, and Hulk runs over Funk repeatedly, and Funk bails out again right on the timekeepers table. Funk throws a chair in the ring, and Hulk takes a seat while he wants for Terry. Funk back in the ring again, and wary to look up, but gets Hogan in the corner and chops Hulk, but Hulk spins him around and opens up on him. Hulk whips Funk in the corner, and flips to the apron. Hulk pulls him back in, and then hits a belly to back Suplex for a two count. Funk with a pair of headbutts, into a side headlock and a kick to the groin, which the ref missed. Funk climbs the ropes, and Hulk shakes the ropes and Terry lands in the wrong way. Hulk with an atomic drop, then whips Funk in and hits a big lariat, then drops the elbow. Hogan stands over Funk, then locks in a side headlock, Funk pushes him in and Jimmy grabs the foot. Hulk chases him, and Jimmy hides under the ring as JYD and Hulk corner him. Hogan back in, and with the ref checking on Hart, Funk uses the tape to choke Hogan down. Funk throws the tape away before the ref sees it, and then nails Hulk with the piledriver and covers Hulk for a near fall. Jesse screams it was a slow count, and Vince disagrees as Jesse is getting irate. Terry stomps the Hulkster, as JYD watches on. Terry unloads on Hulk, but Hulk starts to Hulk Up! Hulk with three punches, Irish Whip, back elbow, another whip in, big boot and Jimmy jumps on the apron. Hulk goes for a Suplex while Terry on the apron, and Jimmy nails Hulk in the stomach so Terry falls on top for a pin, but Hulk has his foot on the ropes. JYD runs over and nails Jimmy, as Funk argues with the ref, as Funk turns around Hulk nails him with the lariat for the win. 3.75/5 a great match, as Terry bumped like a pinball for Hogan and made Hulk look like a million bucks. Terry outside with the ref, and lays a beating on him. Funk starts throwing chairs in the ring, as Hulk stands tall with his World Title, as Jimmy Hart is still down on the cement. We comeback from commercial, as Terry is dragging Jimmy backstage by his ankle, which looks hilarious. After the replay we go to Mene Gene with the Hulkster & JYD, as Hulk calls Funk boy, and tells him come back in the ring. JYD calls himself Deputy Dog, which for some reason makes me laugh. We go outside with George Steele and Lou Albano playing in the water, and then to Jesse Ventura with Randy Savage and Elizabeth. Elizabeth looks great in a blue bathing suit; Jesse asks if he’s nervous about Steele since he’s unpredictable. Savage says he’s a Macho Man and Steele is just an Animal and a Macho Man can never be scared of an Animal. Savage says he’s going to teach Elizabeth to swim as he throws her in the water, while Jesse laughs like a hyena.

3. Randy Savage v. George Steele. Randy and Elizabeth make her way to the ring while Vince chastises Jesse for laughing, Jesse says wait till Randy teaches her to parachute! As Randy Savage is distracted by the crowd, Elizabeth holds the ropes and George makes his way over to Elizabeth. George pats Elizabeth’s arm, as Vince compares them to King Kong and Jessica Lange. Savage jumps in the ring and starts yelling at Elizabeth, as Capt. Lou holds Steele back. The ref looks like Dean Malenko, or is that just me? Steele quickly chases Savage out of the ring, Savage bounces back in the ring and Steele chases him out again. Savage quickly climbs the ropes, and Animal goes back, they lock up and Steele grabs Savage by the hair and tosses him out. Steele chases after, but distracted by Liz. Savage starts to climb the ropes, and Steele spots him so Savage jumps back down. Albano gets Steele back in the ring, and Savage catches him and starts choking Steele. Animal uses his power to pound Savage down, and Savage bails. Savage sweeps the legs of George and pulls him outside. Savage starts to pound Steele, and Steele comes back, Savage runs and puts Elizabeth between them. Savage back in, and Steele follows and slams Savage down hard. Animal then eats the turnbuckle and throws the stuffing at Savage, who rolls out of the ring, while Steele continues his meal. Savage back in, and Steele starting at Elizabeth gets caught by Savage who hits a double axe handle for the win. 1.75/5 not a great match, but its Steele what can you expect. Savage quickly picks up Elizabeth over his shoulder and carries her out, and gives us a nice cleavage shot! For what it was, it was a fun match, but nothing really major happened as most of the match was Savage running. Vince says Steele has fallen in love with Miss Elizabeth, as we go back to Gene and Hogan at poolside. They introduce a video of the highlights of 1985, but since this is the 24/7 version it has generic music. I believe it was originally “When the Going Gets Tough” by Billy Ocean. Still a pretty cool little trip down memory lane. I found it on Youtube, so it’ll be posted at the end of this recap!!! Jesse says they intentionally left him out, as we go to Nikolai Volkoff and Freddie Blassie with Gene. Volkoff says his match tonight is for respect, as Sheik comes in and does his usual, which makes the show! From there to Cpl. Kirchner with Jesse Ventura, boy he lasted long! Kirchner says he’s able to survive and prevail anywhere in the world. Kirchner says the best man will win and it will be him. Jesse tells Kirchner to show people how to enter water and he goes down a zip line and drops in the water.

4. Nikolai Volkoff v. Cpl Kirchner. Kirchner was brought in as a replacement for Sgt. Slaughter who left the WWF to go to the AWA when there was a disagreement about Slaughter working with GI Joe. Kirchner had a short run with WWF, before heading to Japan as Leatherface from the Texas Chainsaw Massacre movies. Nikolai requests that we all rise for his singing of the Soviet National Anthem, which goes over like a fart in church. Kirchner’s music cuts off Nikolai’s singing, as Jesse protests the interruption of Nikolai’s singing as we go to commercial. This is a peace match, whatever that means. Volkoff overpowers Kirchner, and we get a clean break, as they lock up again, and another clean break. Nikolai with a go behind into a takedown, Cpl rolls through and locks in a headlock, then takes over the big man. Both men have agreed to not use any cheap shots, and keep the match scientific. Volkoff powers out of the headlock, as we get a test of strength, as Sheik looks on from ringside. They wind up in the ropes again, and another clean break, surprisingly. Volkoff with another go behind, into a takedown and a bridge for a near fall. Nikolai goes for a slam, and Cpl goes behind and rolls him up, but Volkoff kicks out. Kirchner back to the headlock, back in the corner and another clean break, Jesse says he is surprised by this. Kirchner back to the side headlock, is that all he knows to do? Cpl into a hammerlock, Volkoff pulls the ankle out, and comes off the ropes. Kirchner puts the boot up, and Volkoff avoids the boot with a cartwheel? Holy crap, where the hell did that move come from!!! Volkoff hits a shoulderblock to take Kirchner down, Volkoff off the ropes, and Kirchner with a nice armbar. This crowd is insane for this match, making it even more exciting. Volkoff goes for a slam and Kirchner with a small package for a near fall. In the ropes again, and no clean break as Nikolai with a knee to the midsection. Nikolai with a hotshot on Cpl and drops a knee on Kirchner for the win. 3.75/5 a great match made even better just by the crowd reaction. I forgot how impressive both guys can be and Volkoff surprised me with the cartwheel. Didn’t expect that from the big Russian, very cool. As Sheik and Volkoff celebrate Kirchner gets up, with fire in his eyes, and nails both men. Kirchner slams the Sheik, but gets caught, however he rams their heads together and Sheik and Volkoff bail out. We now get the recap of the Fuji/Steamboat feud as we go to commercial. We come back to Don Muraco, the original Rock, coming out of a pool surrounded by bikini babes. Mene Gene standing by with Fuji and Muraco, as Gene says JYD is going to be a problem for the two of them. Fuji says in his country they eat dogs, way to be racial Vince, classy!! As Fuji & Muraco enter the ring, Gene is with Steamboat & JYD. Steamboat says he’s been hung, hit with a chair, but he has not been beaten, and Steamboat says he has the best partner tonight. JYD says Fuji & Muraco are a bad influence on the kids and they will get rid of them.

5. Mr. Fuji & Don Muraco v. JYD & Ricky Steamboat. Dog and Steamboat come out to “Grab Them Cakes” as we go to commercial, only JYD and Hogan have had the right music tonight! Muraco and Fuji jump their opponents before the bell, as Muraco takes the dog down while Fuji tosses Steamboat out. Fuji slams Ricky on the floor, while Muraco with a big knee on the Dog. Muraco whips the Dog in, but JYD reverses and backdrops Muraco. JYD with a snapmare, but misses the headbutt, and Muraco makes a tag. Fuji with the chops on the Dog, but the Dog comes back with a big slam, and Fuji backs off. Dog goes after him, but gets caught and Muraco tagged in, and the Dog slams him. Muraco in the wrong corner and Steamboat with a cheap shot, as Dog works over Muraco with a vicious headbutt to the nose. Fuji back in, and chops JYD down, and tags Muraco back in. Don drops a big elbow on JYD, as Muraco readies for the piledriver, but Dog counters. Muraco makes the tag, and Fuji cuts off JYD and keeps him down, as Muraco comes back in. Muraco stomps the Dog, and drops a knee. Don whips Dog in the corner, but misses the blind charge, and Steamboat tagged in. Steamboat chops Muraco in the corner and whips him in and chops his down, then chops Fuji. Dragon continues to chop Muraco, then slingshots him into Mr. Fuji, as Steamboat climbs the ropes. Dragon with a crossbody, but Fuji saves the match, as Muraco tags Fuji in. Fuji goes for a back Suplex, but Steamboat lands on his feet and tags in JYD. JYD with a big headbutt on Mr. Fuji for the win. 2.75/5 yet another fun little match, as everyone kept a quick pace, even if it was a short match. After the match Steamboat chops Muraco out of the ring, while JYD headbutts Fuji again. Fuji rolls out of the ring, while Muraco gets a cheap shot on Steamboat. We come back from the commercial to Jesse Ventura with Vince McMahon closing the show, as Vince says the best part was Hulk’s title defense. Jesse says no, the best moment was when he was in the ring as he dares anyone to do what he does. As the show closes with a generic song, while the 85 video replays again.

Match Recap

1. Roddy Piper, Bob Orton & Jesse Ventura beat The Hillbillies in 8:00 3.25/5
2. Hulk Hogan pinned Terry Funk in 8:30 3.75/5
3. Randy Savage beat George Steele in 4:06 1.75/5
4. Nikolai Volkoff pinned Cpl Kirchner in 4:32 3.75/5
5. JYD & Ricky Steamboat beat Mr. Fuji & Don Muraco in 5:19 2.75/5

This was yet another fun episode of SNME, with Funk/Hogan being the best of the bunch. The little poolside things were cute and were just fun to watch, especially Savage and Elizabeth. The Six Man Tag match was hectic and fun to watch as all Ventura’s team was great, and it was nice to have Heenan on commentary, forgot how awesome he was. The World Title match was remarkable; as Funk just sold everything did like he was shot out a cannon, making the match. Volkoff and Kirchner impressed me, as that was a short match, but entertaining as they did the clean break gimmick right to the end before Volkoff then used a cheapshot on the Corporal to win. The other two matches were good, as the Savage/Steele started the year long story of George’s fascination with Elizabeth, which carried right to Wrestlemania III. The tag match was the end of the Steamboat/Fuji feud, as Fuji would basically from in ring action soon after, and Muraco would join up with Orton to form a team. All in all another fun filled show from the WWF, and worlds better than the horrible episode of Monday Night RAW from last night.

And now the Youtube portion of the post,
here’s the 1985 video, as it was originally aired

Here’s the opening portion with Vince, Jesse & Heenan

Hulk Hogan vs Terry Funk

Steamboat/Dog vs Fuji/Muraco

Enjoy, episode five coming soon!!!


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