The Undertaker’s Last Hurrah…and This Fan Is Ready
For twenty years (with the exception of the AMERICAN BADASS angle), this entrance would send chills throughout arenas throughout the world, chills that no other entrance could match. In the ring, a 7-foot, 300+ pound giant would wrestle like a luchador: flying clotheslines, walking on the top rope, and more acts of athleticism no normal man of his stature can fathom.
This man’s last match is probably a little less than two months away. As a fan for near all of those twenty years, I am ready for it.
‘Taker is getting old. His build is slowly but surely deteriorating. His in-ring technique is suffering. Hell, his hairline is to the point where he has to (allegedly) wear a wig to his big return to RAW two weeks ago. This is not the same guy who crucified Stephanie McMahon and threw Mankind off the top of the cell. This is a shadow of his former self, and like the TV shows of my youth, he is not showing his age well.
My allegiance to the Undertaker was cemented at the Royal Rumble 1994, when he gave the rebirth speech and floated out of the top of the pre-Titantron. To a little boy just turning seven, he may as well have come out of my TV screen and Tombstoned my dad. This guy not only had the skills in the ring, but he had the showmanship to back it up.
I’ve followed this man through every match, every persona, every step of his career. I am a tried-and-true Creature of the Night, and as such, I feel that I’m qualified to say this: it’s time.
Time for Undertaker’s last hurrah. Time for Mark Callaway to walk down that aisle one more time for one more match. On-camera, I think WWE is hinting at this as well, with Triple H saying “it’s over” and Undertaker asking for “vengeance” for a win that didn’t feel like a win. This is the perfect setup for the end of the Deadman, and I’ve come to terms with it.
If I had my way, the next two months would be a tribute to a man who stayed loyal to one wrestling establishment longer than anyone. Before Stone Cold, before The Rock, before Triple H, before Shawn Michaels…there was The Undertaker. He didn’t jump ship multiple times like Bret Hart and Hulk Hogan. He has been a constant part of WWE and their operations since Survivor Series 1990. WWE should treat him as such.
Have Paul Bearer come back to deliver a message to Hunter on an episode of RAW. Bring back the burning Taker symbol from the Attitude era. Most importantly, film some retro Undertaker and Paul Bearer casket-building promos from the early and mid 90s. Whatever can be done for this man SHOULD be done, because he’s one of the most marketable and successful wrestlers WWE has ever seen.
I have but one request: use the WWE The Music Vol. 3 theme for his Wrestlemania entrance. As much as I like the classic funeral dirge, this song is my favorite WWE theme music of all time.
Truth be told, it’s time to say goodbye to The Deadman. As much as it pains me to admit it, it’s time. Here’s to 20-0 being the last victory for a man who’s been winning for over twenty years.