Miss Elizabeth

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Miss Elizabeth
Miss Elizabeth.jpg
Miss Elizabeth in 1986.
Birth name Elizabeth Ann Hulette
Born (1960-11-19)November 19, 1960
Frankfort, Kentucky
Died May 1, 2003(2003-05-01) (aged 42)
Marietta, Georgia
Professional wrestling career
Ring name(s) Miss Elizabeth
Billed height 5 ft 6 in (1.68 m)[1]
Billed weight 115 lb (52 kg)[1][2]
Billed from Louisville, Kentucky[3]
Debut July 30, 1985[2]
Retired August 17, 2000

Elizabeth Ann Hulette[2] (November 19, 1960 – May 1, 2003),[2] best known as Miss Elizabeth, was an American professional wrestling manager. She gained international fame from the mid-1980s to the early 1990s in the World Wrestling Federation, and the mid-1990s in World Championship Wrestling in her role as the manager to wrestler "Macho Man" Randy Savage. She died as a result of a drug and alcohol overdose on May 1, 2003 in the home she shared with wrestler Lex Luger.[4]

Early life[edit]

Elizabeth was born in Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky.[5] Elizabeth graduated The University of Kentucky with a degree in communications.[2]

Professional wrestling career[edit]

While working at International Championship Wrestling shows,[1] Hulette met Randall Poffo, a professional wrestler with the stage name "Macho Man" Randy Savage.[2] They eventually married in December 1984.[2]

World Wrestling Federation[edit]

1985–1987[edit]

In the summer of 1985, the WWF did an angle (a fictional storyline) in which all the managers in the promotion were competing to offer their services to Randy Savage.[2] During a match on July 30, 1985 in Poughkeepsie, NY, several managers were at ringside in hopes that he would name one of them as his new manager. After the match, Savage thanked the managers for their consideration and then asked that his new manager come to ringside.[2] An attractive, unnamed woman then came down to the ring, and announcer Bruno Sammartino remarked, "She must be some sort of movie star," referring to her glamourous sex appeal.[2] It was later revealed that her name was Miss Elizabeth. Elizabeth's WWF debut aired on the August 24, 1985, edition of WWF Prime Time Wrestling.[2] From that point on, she was the manager of Randy Savage.[6]

Miss Elizabeth's first major angle was during Savage's feud with George "The Animal" Steele in 1986.[2] In the angle, Steele fell in love with Elizabeth, angering Savage and leading to a series of grudge matches between him and Steele.[2] Their feud was one of the WWF's most popular of the 1980s; it carried on for more than a year, thanks to the feral Steele's continued innocent crush on Elizabeth.[2] She also figured prominently in Savage's 1986 feuds with Hulk Hogan and Ricky "the Dragon" Steamboat.[2]

After injuring Steamboat's larynx, Savage lost his Intercontinental Title to Steamboat at WrestleMania III on March 29, 1987. The Savage-Steamboat match concluded with Steamboat defeating Savage.[2] Steamboat later lost the title to The Honky Tonk Man. Honky's insistence that he was the greatest Intercontinental champion of all time instigated a challenge from Savage, the former champion.[2] In their match, which aired on the October 3, 1987, edition of NBC's Saturday Night's Main Event, Honky shoved Elizabeth to the mat before assaulting Savage with a guitar. Elizabeth ran backstage and persuaded Hulk Hogan to rescue Savage to form The Mega Powers, running off Honky and his allies, Bret "The Hitman" Hart and Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart.[2]

Throughout the Savage-Honky feud, a key point was Honky's claim that Elizabeth secretly wanted him more than Savage.[2] In several of their matches, Honky would try to corner Elizabeth, although Savage would always beat him back. In other Savage-Honky matches, a woman named Peggy Sue (usually Sherri Martel, or a dressed-up Jimmy "Mouth of the South" Hart) would harass Elizabeth at ringside, creating an advantage for Honky.[2] At the 1987 Slammy Awards, Honky named Elizabeth "Woman of the Year," but the honor was only to harass her and anger Savage; Savage quickly ran Honky off.[2]

1988–1989[edit]

Miss Elizabeth played a central role in the storyline between WrestleMania IV and WrestleMania V.

The year 1988 was a pivotal one for Randy Savage and Miss Elizabeth. Hulk Hogan, who had been the champion and the foundation upon which the WWF's popularity was built, lost the WWF Championship belt in a match against André the Giant.[2] André the Giant then forfeited the belt to the "Million Dollar Man" Ted DiBiase due to an arrangement that they had prior to the match.[2] President Jack Tunney declared that the belt cannot be forfeited to another individual.[2] A tournament was held at WrestleMania IV to declare a new champion, which Randy Savage won, pinning Dibiase (with Hogan's help) in the finals.[2]

At the first ever SummerSlam, The Mega Powers teamed up against André the Giant and Ted DiBiase, The Mega Bucks with Savage's former tag-team partner Jesse "The Body" Ventura as the special guest referee.[2] Most of the pre-match build-up centered on Elizabeth, who by this time was at the peak of her popularity.[2] The tease for the match was that if things got bad, Elizabeth, billed as the secret weapon of The Mega Powers, was going to wear sexy red panties under her fancy clothes.[2] Towards the end of match, André and Dibiase were in control, so Elizabeth got up on the apron and ripped her skirt off to reveal her underwear which distracted André, Dibiase and Ventura, giving Savage and Hogan time to recover after being knocked out of the ring.[2] The Mega Powers quickly took advantage of the situation and won the match after Ventura made a reluctant three-count (Savage rode Ventura's arm down to the mat to finalize the count).[2]

Elizabeth became the catalyst in the uneasy – and ultimate breakup of – the Savage–Hogan relationship, particularly due to Hogan's overfriendly, overprotective attitude toward Elizabeth.[2] At his behest, Elizabeth accompanied Hogan to ringside for several matches during the fall of 1988, including matches against King Haku, Akeem, and Bad News Brown that aired on Saturday Night's Main Event.[2] In the match against Akeem, Elizabeth's safety was endangered by Akeem and his allies, Slick and Akeem's tag-team partner, The Big Boss Man (who wrestled together as The Twin Towers) when they began stalking Elizabeth. During a climatic point in the match where Hogan was being brutally beaten by Akeem, Big Boss Man grabbed Elizabeth and placed her in handcuffs, stopped only when Savage ran out to make the save; although he checked on Elizabeth's well-being, Savage appeared to be unconcerned about Hogan.[2] At the 1988 Survivor Series, Hogan's obviously friendly behavior toward Elizabeth angered Savage, something pro-heel commentator Jesse Ventura played up during a post-match interview with Savage. Savage emphatically denied any animosity between himself and Hogan, but Savage would become increasingly jealous and wary of Hogan as the weeks went by.[2]

Concurrent with the Mega Powers' feud with the Twin Towers was Savage's feud with Bad News Brown.[2] That feud started when Brown, during a guest appearance on "The Brother Love Show" talk segment, alleged that Elizabeth was "doing favors" for WWF President Jack Tunney (implying she wanted to protect Savage and his Heavyweight Championship reign from Brown). Savage quickly got revenge against Brown.

The tension between Hogan and Savage continued to build at the 1989 Royal Rumble when Hogan "accidentally" eliminated Savage. A hot Savage then confronted Hogan in the ring, causing Elizabeth to rush to the ring to play the role of peacemaker. After the match was over, Jesse Ventura interviewed Savage and claimed he could see problems between The Mega Powers, something Savage unconvincingly denied.

Meanwhile, tension continued to build within the Mega Powers, and on The Main Event, aired on live television on February 3, 1989, From the Bradley Center in Milwaukee, WI., Savage could no longer contain his growing anger toward Hogan. The sequence of events began when Akeem threw Savage onto Elizabeth, who was knocked unconscious from the force of the blow. Hogan immediately ran to Elizabeth's aid and, distraught and fearing the worst, carried her to the backstage area for medical attention; the match continued in the meantime, with Akeem and Big Bossman working Savage over. Elizabeth eventually regained consciousness and asked Hogan to return to the ring. However, Savage, furious over being left to take a beating, slapped Hogan in the face and, after having some choice words, left him to face the Twin Towers alone. (Hogan eventually won the match single handed). Following the match backstage, Savage and Hogan had a loud verbal argument while Elizabeth was receiving medical attention, which culminated with Savage blindsiding Hogan with the championship belt and beating him.

In the buildup to the Hogan-Savage main event match at WrestleMania V, Savage appeared in a series of televised promos accusing Hogan of "lusting after Elizabeth" with video footage of past incidents, edited in a context to push Hogan as a jealous, sore heel. Hogan responded by defending his behavior (with more complete footage from the same incidents, to push him as the face). After weeks of speculation as to whose corner she would stand in at WrestleMania V, Elizabeth announced she would stand in a "neutral" corner. During the Hogan-Savage match, Elizabeth got in the way of both wrestlers several times and was eventually sent from ringside; Hogan went on to win Savage's WWF Heavyweight Championship.

Following WrestleMania V, Savage replaced Miss Elizabeth in favor of Sensational Sherri.

For the remainder of 1989, Elizabeth's appearances were very sporadic. Elizabeth appeared at the 1989 SummerSlam, managing Hogan and Brutus Beefcake as they headlined the show against Savage and Zeus (who appeared with Sensational Sherri); Elizabeth, who rarely became physical with other wrestlers beforehand, tripped Sherri during a critical point in the match. Elizabeth also appeared at a few matches managing Hogan in matches against Savage. Elizabeth also briefly co-hosted WWF Wrestling Spotlight with Vince McMahon.

1990–1992[edit]

Savage remained a heel for many more months, eventually dubbing himself "The Macho King" after defeating "Hacksaw" Jim Duggan for the WWF's "King of the Ring" title in the September 1989. After Savage and Sherri began a heated feud with "The American Dream" Dusty Rhodes and Sapphire near the end of 1989, Miss Elizabeth joined forces with Rhodes and Sapphire at WrestleMania VI, where the two couples were engaged in the WWF's first mixed tag-team match. When Sherri attempted to help Savage double-team Rhodes, Miss Elizabeth grabbed Sherri by the hair. While the two women faced off, Sapphire took advantage of the situation, kneeling down behind Sherri just as Miss Elizabeth pushed her. Sherri lost her balance and gave Sapphire enough advantage to pin Sherri for the win.[7]

Miss Elizabeth disappeared from WWF television until WrestleMania VII, when Savage lost a retirement match to The Ultimate Warrior. Upon his loss, Sherri began beating and kicking the defeated man until Elizabeth, who was sitting at ringside, entered the ring and defended Savage. Elizabeth grabbed Sherri by the hair and threw her out of the ring, reuniting Savage and Elizabeth.[3] Macho Man punctuated the reunion by holding down the ropes for Elizabeth after years of her doing it for him.

The couple then held a heavily promoted on-air wedding billed as "The Match Made in Heaven" at SummerSlam 1991 in New York's Madison Square Garden (the couple were officially married on December 30, 1984).[8] At the wedding reception, Elizabeth opened a gift package containing a live snake, which frightened her; newly-turned-heel Jake "The Snake" Roberts and The Undertaker crashed the reception and attacked Savage. This started a feud between Roberts and Savage, where Elizabeth quickly figured prominently. The first high-profile Savage-Roberts match was at the Tuesday in Texas pay-per-view event, where, after Savage gained a pinfall victory, Roberts beat down Savage, then forced Elizabeth to beg him to stop the beating. Apparently dissatisfied with her begging, Roberts grabbed her by the hair and slapped her across her face. On the February 8, 1992 edition of Saturday Night's Main Event, Roberts, with a steel chair in tow, was waiting in the backstage area for Elizabeth and Savage to come through the curtain after a match. Roberts was about to strike Elizabeth with the chair, but Undertaker stopped him. This started Undertaker's feud with his former ally.

In her final WWF angle, WWF Champion Ric Flair bragged that he dated Elizabeth before Savage met her. Flair's tagline was, "She was mine before she was yours." He showed photos of himself with Elizabeth in casual situations, which were later printed in an issue of WWF Magazine. It was later revealed that the photos were in fact pictures of Savage and Elizabeth, which Flair had doctored. Flair, with Mr. Perfect as his "executive consultant", said that they were going to show a nude photo of Elizabeth on the screen at WrestleMania VIII, although this did not occur. Nonetheless, Flair's claims set up his WrestleMania VIII match with Savage. During the match, Elizabeth made her way to ringside, against the wishes of WWF officials. After Savage pinned Flair to win the WWF Championship, an angry Flair cornered Elizabeth and began to kiss her; Elizabeth slapped Flair away, and Savage began beating Flair until ring officials broke the two up. Elizabeth's final WWF appearance took place on April 19, 1992 during an overseas tour of England; in that match, Savage pinned Shawn Michaels after Elizabeth, who had earlier been sent backstage, returned to prevent Sherri's interference on Michaels' behalf.[9] Despite her departure, the Elizabeth-Flair storyline continued through most of the spring – the most notable highlight was Flair and Mr. Perfect playing a voice mail from a woman identifying herself as Elizabeth, saying she was "waiting at home" and that she "loved" him – until the Savage-Michaels match from England was aired on WWF Prime Time Wrestling in June; the publication of the actual Savage-Elizabeth photos in WWF Magazine came at about that same time.

Shortly after Elizabeth's final WWF appearance, she and Savage divorced. After the decree was finalized late that summer, Savage issued a statement that was printed in WWF Magazine revealing that he and Elizabeth were no longer together, and thanking the fans for their support through the years. The publication of Savage's statement marked, at the time, a rare acknowledgement of the wrestlers' private lives for both the WWF and its flagship publication. Savage continued with the WWF for two more years, and except for the statement in WWF Magazine, his divorce from Elizabeth was neither referred to nor figured into any of Savage's future feuds.

Between her WWF and WCW stints, Elizabeth worked briefly for ESPN as a commentator for Speedboat racing events.

World Championship Wrestling[edit]

1996–1998[edit]

Miss Elizabeth in 1998 after a taping of WCW Monday Nitro.

In January 1996, Miss Elizabeth returned to wrestling as manager for Savage. She later turned into a villain against Savage and became Ric Flair's co-manager in the Four Horsemen. She later turned against the Four Horsemen and joined the New World Order (nWo) alongside Hogan, but seemed to still care deeply for her ex-husband, and eventually joined his side when he too joined the nWo months later. In June 1998, she parted ways with Savage once again by joining Hogan's side of the nWo: nWo Hollywood. Then, she accompanied Eric Bischoff on his way to the ring for the next few months, and derided Savage. Savage coldly reminded her that he "got over her a long time ago" and didn't need her.

Elizabeth briefly married Cary Lubetsky, a South Florida attorney, on December 6, 1997. The wedding was held at the Cuban Hebrew Temple in Miami Beach. The marriage was short-lived, as the couple soon separated and were officially divorced on April 19, 1999.[10]

1999[edit]

On the January 4 episode of Nitro, Elizabeth was seen talking to police detectives. According to the storyline, she claimed that Bill Goldberg was stalking her and that he even accosted her by the water cooler. She then filed charges against Goldberg. Goldberg was arrested later that night for aggravated stalking and taken into custody by police. However, later that night, Elizabeth admitted that she was lying. As it turned out, Elizabeth was a pawn for the nWo so that Goldberg would be unable to have his scheduled title match with Kevin Nash later that night. Due to Goldberg's apparent absence, the returning Hulk Hogan took Goldberg's title shot in the match. Soon after, Elizabeth accompanied Lex Luger, and sometimes Kevin Nash, to ringside. Lex Luger, who was accompanied by Elizabeth at this time to ringside for single matches, was supposed to get ready for the tag team match against Konnan and Rey Mysterio Jr. with Miss Elizabeth's hair on the line and Rey Mysterio Jr.'s mask on the line at Superbrawl IX with Kevin Nash as his tag team partner. However, on the February 18, 1999 edition of WCW Thunder, at the E-Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, a limo pulled up and was driving along with Rey Mysterio Jr. with Luger and Elizabeth inside. As Elizabeth and Luger were getting out of the limo, Rey Mysterio Jr. grabbed the door and slammed it into Luger's biceps, injuring him in the process. Elizabeth was screaming at Rey who yelled "thug life!". As Elizabeth closed the door, the limo left the arena with Luger and Elizabeth inside. Luger was immediately replaced by Scott Hall as Kevin Nash's tag team partner for the tag team match at Superbrawl IX. After Spring Stampede 1999 she took time off on the road with Luger to recover from his bicep injury and go through a divorce with her husband Cary Lubetsky.

2000[edit]

In February, Elizabeth managed the short-lived partnership between Luger and Ric Flair. The three of them were known as Team Package. The trio's main goal was to take down Hulk Hogan, whom Luger had been publicly challenging to a match during the previous few weeks. Hogan made his return to WCW during the February 2 edition of WCW Thunder, and while his back was turned during an interview segment, Elizabeth came into the ring, baseball bat raised. However, Hogan quickly turned around and easily out-muscled the bat from her possession. As a receipt for her dastardly act, and in a throwback to his attacks on Sensational Sherri in the World Wrestling Federation, Hogan picked up Liz and held her up high in the air and delivered his patented atomic drop. However, Elizabeth no-sold the maneuver and quickly rolled out of the ring.[11] Later that week, Hogan called into Bubba the Love Sponge's radio show to discuss his program with Luger, not to mention Elizabeth no-selling his atomic drop maneuver on the previous edition of Thunder. Hogan claimed that Elizabeth refused to take a bigger bump because she wasn't wearing any panties underneath her skirt.[12] Shortly thereafter, Team Package went their separate ways as they fought various members of The New Blood. Elizabeth engaged in short-lived feuds with Vince Russo and Kimberly Page. On May 8, 2000, Elizabeth wrestled in her first official match against Daffney. She then competed in matches against Rhonda Singh and Madusa.

WCW released Elizabeth from her contract on August 17, 2000.[13]

WWE[edit]

At the 2011 Comic Con, the Mattel toy company announced a voting poll for fans to decide the next five figures to be made in their Wrestling Legends series. On August 14, 2011 before SummerSlam, Mattel had wrestling personality Jimmy Hart announce that Miss Elizabeth was one of the five winners (along with King Kong Bundy, Diamond Dallas Page, Arn Anderson and Tully Blanchard.)[14] Before this there had only been two figures released of Miss Elizabeth. The first was from the original WWF series released in 1987 by LJN. The next was in the Power & Beauty set featuring an nWo version of her and Randy Savage released in 1998 by Toy Biz. The figure released by Mattel was later released in Elite series 19 instead of the legends line.

Video Games[edit]

Miss Elizabeth can be unlocked as a non-playable character in WWE 2K14.

Later life[edit]

Elizabeth and Luger stayed together as a couple, after being let go by WCW in 2000. Friends of Elizabeth said the two were planning to get married sometime in 2003. After her departure from wrestling, Hulette began working at the front desk at Main Event Fitness in Marietta, Georgia, a gym that Luger had owned for years after he and Steve Borden opened it during their wrestling heyday.

Elizabeth was advertised to make her first wrestling appearance on television since her departure from WCW in 2000 during the World Wrestling All-Stars tour of Europe in November 2002 and December 2002 alongside Luger.[15] She accompanied Luger on the tour overseas, but didn't appear on a single show.[16][17] Elizabeth never made another wrestling appearance on television after her release from WCW. Luger ended up winning and losing the WWA World Heavyweight Championship in matches with Sting during the tour.[17]

On April 19, 2003, Elizabeth was involved in a domestic dispute with Luger, who allegedly struck her in the garage of their townhouse in Marietta, Georgia. Cobb County police found Elizabeth with two bruised eyes, a bump on her head, and a cut lip. Luger was charged with a misdemeanor count of battery and released on $2,500 bond. Two days later on April 21, Luger was arrested for driving under the influence after rear-ending another car while driving his Porsche. According to the report on the arrest, Luger had slurred speech and bloodshot eyes and could not locate his driver's license. Luger had a 9-mm handgun in the car. Elizabeth was a passenger in the vehicle, and was sent home in a taxicab. Luger was also driving with a suspended license for not appearing in court on March 5, 2003, for a hearing on a previous offense – driving with expired tags and having no proof of vehicle insurance.[18]

Death[edit]

On May 1, 2003, in Marietta, Georgia, Luger called 9-1-1 to report that Hulette was not breathing. She did not respond to mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, and paramedics rushed her to a hospital, where she was pronounced dead. A medical examiner listed the cause of death as "acute toxicity," brought on by a mix of painkillers and vodka.

In wrestling[edit]

Signature moves

Wrestlers managed

Faction affiliations

Nicknames

  • "The First Lady of Wrestling"[2][3]

Entrance themes

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

World Wrestling Federation

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Shields, Brian (2006). Main Event: WWE in the Raging 80s. Pocket Books. pp. 124–125. ISBN 978-1-4165-3257-6. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj "Miss Elizabeth's profile". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved June 14, 2011. 
  3. ^ a b c "Miss Elizabeth's WWE Alumni Profile". WWE. Retrieved June 14, 2011. 
  4. ^ Autopsy: 'Miss Elizabeth' dies from overdose of pills, alcohol AP. The Tuscaloosa News – August 3, 2003
  5. ^ "Kentucky Vital Records". 130 Cert. No. 64633. 1960. 
  6. ^ "WWF @ Poughkeepsie, NY – Mid-Hudson Civic Center – July 30, 1985". The History of WWE. Archived from the original on October 18, 2007. Retrieved November 4, 2007. 
  7. ^ Shields, Brian and Kevin Sullivan (2009). WWE Encyclopedia. DK/BradyGAMES. p. 265. ISBN 978-0-7566-4190-0. 
  8. ^ "Did You Know?!?". WrestleView. Archived from the original on March 29, 2008. Retrieved September 19, 2008. 
  9. ^ "UK Rampage 92 – Sheffield, England – Arena – April 19, 1992". The History of WWE. Retrieved March 18, 2010. 
  10. ^ "Managing at all levels suits Liz fine". Miami Herald. Retrieved August 25, 2007. 
  11. ^ "WCW Thunder – Wednesday, February 2, 2000". DDT Digest. February 2, 2000. Retrieved November 4, 2007. 
  12. ^ "Hulk Hogan Calls In To The "Bubba the Love Sponge" Radio Show To Talk About Return To WCW". Pro Wrestling Torch No.588 – February 12, 2000. February 12, 2000. Archived from the original on March 28, 2008. Retrieved November 4, 2007. 
  13. ^ "Miss Elizabeth 2000 Updates". Official Women Of Wrestling. August 17, 2000. Retrieved November 4, 2007. 
  14. ^ "News From Mattel". Action Figure Times. August 15, 2011. Retrieved August 15, 2011. 
  15. ^ "WWA welcomes 'The Godfather' & 'Perry Saturn'". Lords of Pain. November 11, 2002. Archived from the original on November 9, 2007. Retrieved November 4, 2007. 
  16. ^ "Miss Elizabeth Dead At Age 42". Mike Mooneyham. May 2, 2003. Archived from the original on October 19, 2007. Retrieved November 4, 2007. 
  17. ^ a b "World Wrestling All-Stars Information". Wrestling Information Archive. Retrieved November 4, 2007. 
  18. ^ "Luger's arrests". Marietta Daily Journal. May 4, 2003. Archived from the original on March 30, 2008. Retrieved November 4, 2007. 

References[edit]

External links[edit]