Episode 85: The Main Event on NBC: Hogan vs. Andre ’88

WWE still refers to our topic today as, “the most watched wrestling program in American TV history.” February 5, 1988, was the first time pro-wrestling had been on network TV since 1955 and 33 million viewers tuned into NBC to see the biggest rematch in history: Hulk Hogan vs. Andre the Giant for the WWF World Championship.

The largest audience in wrestling history was in for a treat: “How can there be two Dave Hebners?” Bruce breaks down arguably the best angle in WWF history and it was so good Meltzer even wrote, “Everything worked so well it was scary.” We break down everything from that night and the weeks leading up to it. How did the WWF negotiate to get a slot during prime time, when was the decision made to switch the title, how did word leak out, how were tickets selling for WrestleMania IV relative to III, why did this show happen in Indianapolis, what was Ebersol’s involvement since he wasn’t with NBC at the time, who put together the graphics and backdrops, who produced the promos for the show, when and where were those shot, why didn’t the main event close the show, what was different between Saturday Night’s Main Event and the Main Event, whose idea was Peggy Sue, when was it decided that Honky wouldn’t drop the IC title, who bought thousands of tickets to WrestleMania, the new World Title, who gets the credit for the evil twin idea, why there were empty seats in the arena, who the director was, who shot the Hulk Hogan training montage and why they used Jake Robert’s theme, and much more about the biggest show in WWF history!

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