Sunday, 19 June 2011

Obituary 'Macho Man' Randy Savage

‘Macho Man’ Randy Savage
November 15th 1952 - May 20th 2011

No one can deny the popularity of the Macho Man. A huge draw, loved and well respected by the masses for his wrestling credentials and climb to the top to become well respected WWE Champion.

Randy Savage was best known for a number of roles. Champion, King and not forgetting his fairytale dream with the late Miss Elizabeth, he spoke volumes to the audience, whom were there to see him just as much as Hulk Hogan, Roddy Piper and Bret Hart.

Golden couple Wrestling will EVER see

Savage had classic matches over his 32 year career, from 1973 – 2005.

In 1985 Savage locked horns with Tito Santana in his first major feud. It was at the Boston Garden on Feb 24th ’86 where Savage claimed the Intercontinental title from Santana for the first time, after using a foreign object.

Intercontinental Champion

Facing former ally Hogan and tackling Bruno Sammarantino and George “The Animal” Steele added more fruits to his labour. It was when Steele developed a crush on Miss Elizabeth that these two fought consecutively. Savage won both challenges from Steele, with the IC Title in play, as defending champion. He also defeated his at Wrestlemania II.

Will You Marry Me? Oooh Yeah!!

Steele caused Savage a problem, one year on, at Wrestlemania III. He pushed Savage off the top rope in his match with Ricky Steamboat. ‘The Dragon’ defeated Randy, enduing his impressive 14 month reign as champion. The match was regarded as one of the greatest in its generation. Both of them had near 2 falls until Steamboat won after the 19th near fall. It was also credited with match of the year 1987 by Pro Wrestling Illustrated and The Wrestling Observer.

Carried to the ring. SO jealous!
His next biggest achievement came when winning the King of the Ring tournament. Eventually defeating The Honky Tonk man, whom self proclaimed was the greatest ever IC Champion. However with an interruption from The Hart Foundation & manager Jimmy Hart, Honky was disqualified, and Savage failed to regain the IC Title, but America’s hero, ‘The Hulkster’ came to save Savage after a request from Miss Elizabeth. Thus beginning the formation of the Mega Powers.

The Mega Powers

Gaining the big one came for Savage at Mania number IV, in which he entered a 14 man tournament filled with very strong competition. Overcoming those odds, Savage claimed his first WWF Championship, which he held for well over a year. He defeated ‘Million Dollar Man’ Ted DiBiase in the finals.

The Mega Powers (Savage, Hogan & Miss Elizabeth) defeated The Mega Bucks (Andre The Giant & DiBiase) at the first ever Summerslam to strengthen their tandem. They also captained and won at the 1988 Survivor Series, defeating the Twin Towers (Big Boss Man & Akeem)

In early ’89 Hogan adopted Miss Elizabeth as his manager also. Savage wasn’t too pleased with this development and the problems between the two arose. The Hulkster accidentally eliminated Savage in the Royal Rumble to which Miss E had to break them up on the outside from almost brawling over it. Later on, Macho Man abandoned Hulk in a tag match against the Twin Towers, which Hogan still managed to win. This signalled the end of the pairing. Fans couldn’t believe it was the end.

Lemme tell ya sumthin' Mean Gene..

After 371 days as WWF Champion, Randy Savage lost the title to Hulk Hogan, at Wrestlemania V. Hogan later went on to feud with Savage, which was penultimately fought at Summerslam’89. Teaming with Zeus (from Hogan’s movie – No Holds Barred), Macho lost to Hogan and his partner, Brutus Beefcake. It culminated at the following PPV – No Holds Barred, in which Hogan & Beefcake won, which was contested inside a Steel Cage.

Haku lost his title of ‘King’ to Jim Duggan, whom then was defeated by Savage. He became known as The “Macho King”. His real life brother, Larry, as The Genius, crowned him in a coronation ceremony on TV, which was a welcomed touch. Ted DiBiase gifted him with a sceptre. This became a multiple use in matches for King Savage.

Macho King then, still King now..

After feuding over a year, Hogan and Macho finally met for the last time, February 23 1990. Savage kicked out at a 2 fall, but referee – James Buster Douglas (a boxing heavyweight champion, popular at that time) counted the pinfall to Hogan. Savage was displeased and displayed this by slapping the ‘ref’, who then retorted with a punch to Savage’s face.

Feuds with Dusty Rhodes, Ultimate Warrior and Sgt. Slaughter followed through. He also recruited a new Queen. Queen Sherri (Sensational Sherri) assisted Macho King for a while.

Savage had a career ending match at Mania VII. Queen Sherri, embarrassed to be associated with her losing King, smashed Savage as he was down. Miss Elizabeth (who happened to be among the audience), decided to jump the barricade and tend to he former love. The fairytale was complete. And the fans lapped it up. They were a part of this too. They sadly divorced in real life in ’92 on September 18th. Flair used this as the basis for their feud after Elizabeth left the WWF at this time.

Queen Sherri looking fierce!

Upon his return (retirement is a dirty word in wrestling), he began feuds with Jake “The Snake” Roberts (briefly involving Undertaker) and Ric Flair, whilst then teaming with Warrior.

Turning his hand to the announce desk, he also provided colour – commentary, whilst only wrestling occasionally in between. (93-94)
Got his mega boa's on

Macho’s contract expired (at the end of October 1994) and he had made the choice to leave for rival company WCW (World Championship Wrestling). He rightfully received an on air tribute/video package, which some believed may not have happened.

Over in WCW, old feelings were resurfaced instantly by the company. Capitalising on the WWF feud, Savage mentioned feelings toward Hogan (whom had left for WCW some time ago) and was its WCW Heavyweight Champion. He saved him from a beat down, all the same.

Taking Avalanche as his first feud, he then gravitated towards Sting. (WCW’s version of Undertaker in terms of reputation) They both teamed up to defeat Avalanche. Shockingly, from the crowd, a drag- dressed Ric Flair was there too! (WCW felt they had a coup of wrestlers they poached from the WWF at this point) and resumed their feud from the WWF, in a different house.

Played it's part in Flair-Savage-Liz feud
In January 1996, Savage brang Elizabeth back to mainstream TV, in WCW, as his valet. She later turned on him in favour of Flair, costing Randy his WCW World title. It was revealed these two had been in cahoots to set up VIP treatment.

At superbowl VII, Savage became a fully fledged member of the nWo. Hogan was already among it and once again Savage added in Miss Elizabeth.

On June 15 1988, he took time out to recover from 2 serious knee injuries. Savage returned later on in the year to have a girlfriend of 19, his valet – Gorgeous George. Joining her afterwards were Madusa, and Miss Madness, who became known as Savage’s Team Madness. Savage lost a title due to Madusa and Miss Madness feuding and thus disbanding the group shortly after. A later feud with celebrity Dennis Rodman was in the pipeline.

He also made appearances and wrestling from 2004 - 2005 in TNA (Total Non-stop Action). He left shortly after a disagreement with a planned finish between him and Jeff Jarrett, whom he was scheduled to defeat for the NWA World Title and then drop back to him roughly one month later.

Randy Savage had influences outside of wrestling too. He appeared in movies such as Ready To Rumble, Spiderman (in 2002) and most recently, animated movie Bolt, in 2008. Also releasing a rap album in October 2003, Be A Man, and becoming a public figure for SlimJim. He was synonymous with the fast food chain in the 90’s and well renowned for it.

On May 20 2011, Savage sadly passed away after colliding his vehicle with a tree head on after suffering a heart attack at the wheel. His wife, Lynn, received minor injuries. On May 30th Vince McMahon paid tribute in an article for Time magazine.

The Macho Man’s legacy will continue to be renowned for his contribution to the wrestling world, his reputation drawing in millions of people worldwide and investing in him and what he transcended through the TV screen, as well as his influences left with us.With his vibrant colours, personality and smooth bearded heroics, at 58 years old, Savage has given us more than enough to be proud of. Macho Man – we salute you!


All Star Savage

The WWF's Top Trump 

©  Max Waltham 19th June 2011

Feel free to comment, follow, subscribe or vote in the poll/s. Thank You

1 comment:

  1. really nice article. a good read.