WWE‘s Survivor Series is approaching fast. The 2018 and first post-Evolution iteration of The Only Time When Raw And Smackdown Go Head To Head (besides those other times) includes two matches involving women: a 5-on-5 tag team elimination match and the Champion vs. Champion’s Friend/Rival/It’s Complicated/Get Well Soon, Becky match of Ronda Rousey vs. Charlotte Flair. Before it was derailed by injury, the women’s singles match was the most highly anticipated on the card, an extremely uncommon occurrence if not a first in the history of this PPV.
Over the thirty-one previous Survivor Series events, women wrestled in a total of twenty-seven matches. Some had multiple women’s and/or mixed tag and/or intergender matches, and the 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1996, and 1997 shows didn’t include any female wrestlers. Some of the matches are forgettable, some terrible, and some show highlights. Like I did before this year’s SummerSlam, I’m going to look back on the history of women on the autumnal WWE Big Four show, and rank all the Survivor Series matches in which women wrestled.
27. Debra, The Fabulous Moolah, Mae Young, and Tori def. Ivory, Jacqueline, Luna, and Terri Runnels, 1999
The Survivor Series best remembered for the debut of Kurt Angle and Stone Cold getting hit by a car also includes an eight-woman tag match that contains so much almost unbelievable garbage you can’t even get offended about any of it. It’s the Mr. Burns thing of all the diseases attacking you at once.
At this point in 1999, the WWF Women’s Championship picture centers around Ho-era Ivory, Mae Young, and the Fabulous Moolah, the latter both 76 years old. In this match, Ivory is joined by heel ladies with a range of wrestling experience, Jacqueline, Luna, and Terri Runnels, whose character right now is that she’s a MILF with breast implants. The old ladies are joined by Tori and Debra, whose character right now is also that she’s a MILF with breast implants. Puppy jokes abound on commentary and an embarrassing “we want puppies” chant breaks out early. If you’re going to chant for a woman to get her tits out, you might as well chant, “get your tits out!” It’s the name number of syllables and everything!
Anyway, the old ladies are too old to wrestle, the crowd and commentary are dumb and sexist, and Tori’s shirt gets ripped off when a fight breaks out between all the women at once after Moolah pins Women’s Champion Ivory. The match also feels way too short for one in which someone is supposed to earn a title shot in a way that isn’t a fluke. Every aspect of this match is bad, and the worst of the Attitude Era on display.
26. WWE Divas Championship match: Nikki Bella (with Brie Bella) def. AJ Lee (c), 2014
In retrospect, it kind of works for Nikki Bella to start her status quo figurehead villain/ Longest Reigning Divas Champion storyline with such a dumb, cheaper than cheap win. That being said, here is this entire match: AJ Lee goes over to Brie Bella on the apron, Brie kisses her, Nikki hits her with a clothesline, and a Rack Attack wins her the match and the title. Because it’s 2014 and WWE is starting to value women more, commentary connects this to how Lee kissed Brie’s husband, Daniel Bryan, at WrestleMania to cost him a match against Sheamus, rather than just going OMG girl-on-girl. However, that’s definitely why the kiss was a part of this, and this barely-a-match is not at all good in itself.