The concept of "Survivor Series" matches was that teams of five (later, four) would strive to survive in a tag match where eliminations could occur by pinfall, submission, disqualification, and count-out, and the match would continue until an entire team was eliminated. The first few years featured these matches exclusively until 1991. In the following years, events featured at least one of these elimination matches but not always as the main focus of the show.In November 1997, the infamous Montreal Screwjob shifted the theme of the event from survival to screwjobs as the WWE Championship matches often ended with highly unusual controversies for the next several years.
Below is the complete list of each Survivor Series event with the headlining match listed:
- 1987: Andre pinned Bam Bam Bigelow to become sole survivor.
- 1988: The Mega Powers eliminated King Haku to become survivors.
- 1989: WWF Champion Hulk Hogan pinned Ted DiBiase to become sole survivor.
- 1990: WWF Champion Warrior & Hogan won a Grand Finale Match of Survival.
- 1991: Undertaker beat WWF Champion Hulk Hogan for the title.
- 1992: WWF Champion Bret Hart forced IC Champion Shawn Michaels to submit.
- 1993: Lex Luger pinned Ludvig Borga to become sole survivor.
- 1994: Bob Backlund upset WWF Champion Bret Hart in an submission match.
- 1995: Bret Hart pinned WWF Champion Diesel to win the title.
- 1996: Sid pinned WWF Champion Shawn Michaels to win the title.
- 1997: Shawn Michaels beat WWF Champion Bret Hart for the title.
- 1998: The Rock beat Mankind for the vacant WWF title.
- 1999: Big Show beat WWF Champion HHH and The Rock for the title.
- 2000: Stone Cold Steve Austin wrestled Triple H to a no contest in a No-DQ match.
- 2001: The Rock pinned Stone Cold to win the Winner Take All match.
- 2002: Shawn Michaels survived the first Elimination Chamber to win the title.
- 2003: World champion Goldberg pinned HHH to retain the title.
- 2004: WWE Champion JBL pinned Booker T to retain the title.
- 2005: WWE Champion John Cena defeated Kurt Angle to retain the title.
- 2006: Batista beat World champion King Booker to win the title.
- 2007: World champion Batista beat Undertaker in Hell in a Cell.
- 2008: John Cena pinned World champion Chris Jericho to win the title.
- 2009: WWE Champion John Cena beat DX in a Triple Threat match.
- 2010: WWE Champion Randy Orton beat Wade Barrett with John Cena as guest referee.
- 2011: John Cena & The Rock defeated The Miz & R-Truth.
- 2012: WWE Champion CM Punk beat John Cena and Ryback.
WWE released The Survivor Series Anthology on DVD on November 3, 2009.