Wrestlemania 8 returns to a stadium, and it’s Ric Flair’s first appearance at the event.
Wrestlemania 8 (Results)
Date: April 5, 1992
Arena: Hoosier Dome (Indianapolis, Ind.)
Attendance: 62, 167
SUMMARY: In 1992, the WWF got off to an amazing start with my favorite Royal Rumble of all-time. Ric Flair won the WWF title in the Royal Rumble after surviving from the No. 3 spot. That card set up almost everything for Wrestlemania 8. Ric Flair and Sid Justice eliminated Macho Man. Sid Justice eliminated Hulk Hogan from the Royal Rumble and Hogan prevented Sid from winning the title in the rumble. Those four would end up working with each other at Wrestlemania. Roddy Piper won the Intercontinental title from The Mountie, setting up Bret’s inevitable journey to win the belt back. The card was billed to having a double main event with Justice vs. Hogan and Flair vs. Savage, and the match between Hogan and Justice was billed as potentially being Hogan’s final match.
MY ENJOYMENT RATING: D-plus
FAVORITE MATCH: Roddy Piper vs. Bret Hart. On a card where there were a lot of forgettable matches, this one is the least forgettable. The Hitman and Hot Rod produce a match where the in-ring work was worked at a strong rate with a story. The ending of the match where Roddy was contemplating hitting Bret with the ring bell was dramatic and built well. It set up an ending that was satisfying.
THINGS THAT MADE ME NOD IN APPROVAL: After years of 3.5 hour Wrestlemanias, we fall under the 3-hour mark which is refreshing and this show cruised. Roddy Piper and Bret Hart’s match was one of the few things that delivered. We see glimpses of the greatness of Shawn Michaels in his match with Tito Santana, who now has the El Matador gimmick. While Randy Savage and Ric Flair produced an average match (more on this in the next section), there is something about seeing these two men, who are capable of high-level matches working together in the same ring at the biggest stage of them all in wrestling. There is something to be said about that.
THINGS THAT MADE ME LOWER HEAD IN SHAME: While it was cool to see Savage and Flair work in the ring together for a match, the match didn’t deliver on the lofty expectations. It wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t what I was expecting given the caliber of workers. There was a random eight-man tag match that was a platform for Ray Combs to do a stand-up routine making fun of the heels. I wish that Jake the Snake’s promo gave us a little bit more. He produced a great promo at Wrestlemania 7, and his Wrestlemania 8 was awful by comparison.
Then there was the main event, which deserves a paragraph of its own. We get little insight on why Hulk Hogan was pulled out of the Wrestlemania 8 main event and replaced with Savage. The match between Hogan and Sid was a slow, typical Hulk Hogan match that featured an inexplicable kick out of the leg drop and simultaneous interference by Harvey Whippleman. All this was followed by a disgustingly late run-in by Papa Shango, who Gorilla Monsoon said was the reason for the DQ but that would impossible since Shango wasn’t anywhere near the ring when the bell rang. The Ultimate Warrior ran in to make the save, pyro goes off and the guys pose to close the show.
RANDOM THOUGHT: “Reverse crescent kick? That’s Sweet Chin Music!”
MY ULTIMATE WRESTLEMANIA CARD RANKING: This was a letdown. I was expecting so much more, and if you were just going off of name value, this card should have delivered. Hulkamania was definitely reaching its end, and the main event’s finish was so bad that it took an average card to below average. There is nothing redeemable about this Wrestlemania card, and its lack of impact on the Wrestlemania history book has it ranked behind Wrestlemania 2, 3 and 4.
- Wrestlemania 7 (Review)
- Wrestlemania 5 (Review)
- Wrestlemania 6 (Review)
- Wrestlemania 3 (Review)
- Wrestlemania 2 (Review)
- Wrestlemania 4 (Review)
- Wrestlemania 8
- Wrestlemania 1 (Review)