Friday, April 13, 2007

WWE Undertaker


The Phenom




Image Courtesy:tv.yahoo.com


The Undertaker has been a long time favorite of mine. From the first time I saw him I have been a fan of his. His dead man routine is one of the most identified routines in the history of WWE. Born as Mark Calaway, he is however more famous by his ring name of ‘The Undertaker’ and his numerous other nicknames. He is considered as one of the most professional men in the World Wrestling Entertainment roster.


Although he became famous at the then WWF, he made his debut with their rival WCW. There he was an emerging star and even had a famous match against Lex Luger at the time. But he however truly blossomed at the WWF. Although he was initially introduced as Kane the Undertaker, he later on dropped the Kane part from his name and adopted the simpler name of “The Undertaker”. This character was on a mortician in the old western movies. The character‘s trademark was being supposedly impervious to pain and possessing supernatural powers.


He made his Wrestlemania debut in 1991 defeating the legend "Superfly" Jimmy Snuka. His popularity soared from there on and the rest as they say is history. He has an unbelievable win-loss record of 15-0 at Wrestlemania with the latest victory coming at the recently concluded Wrestlemania 23 at the expense of Batista and thereby winning the World Heavyweight Championship.




Image Courtesy: wikipedia.org


He has had many famous feuds over the years and some equally great matches along the way. But in my mind he will always be remembered for two of the greatest Hell in the Cell matches of all time. In 1997 Undertaker had won the WWF Championship title a second time and was defending it against Bret Hart at Summer Slam. The tension in the match was intensified with the decision to make Shawn Michaels the guest referee, who was having a feud with Bret Hart at the time. During the course of the match Bret Hart spit on Shawn Michaels and the latter promptly tried to give a steel chair shot to Hart. However the Undertaker took the hit costing him his WWF championship.


This set up the first Hell in the Cell match between Michaels and Undertaker at the In Your House: Badd Blood in 1997. As an added incentive the winner was given the chance of becoming the number one contender for the WWF championship. The match was completely fresh and innovative. The creativity and originality that these two professionals whipped up was truly unbelievable. Undertaker dominated the match throughout with Michaels fighting back several times. At one point Michaels got the Undertaker tangled in the two top ropes, momentarily immobilizing him. However when Michaels tried to charge at the Undertaker the latter flipped him over the top ropes and on top of a cameraman and injuring the cameraman.




Image Courtesy: wikipedia.org


While the injured cameraman was being taken out of the ring the two superstars took to the top of the cage and began to fight from the top. At one point Michaels was trying to outrun the Undertaker by climbing back down the cell. He was left hanging off the side when the Undertaker stomped on his hands, causing him to fall through the Spanish announce table at ringside from a height of around 10-12 feet. The fall he took is still spectacular to watch. Undertaker followed this up with two chair shots which seemed to have sealed the match. However Kane would come out on his debut and give the Undertaker a tombstone and allowed a bloody HBK to put his arm over the Undertaker and win the match. The match will not be forgotten by any who saw it.





If the first Hell in the Cell match was spectacular then the second one involving the Undertaker and the Mankind (Mick Foley) was absolutely horrific. It was held at the 1998 King of the ring tournament and Mankind wanted to upstage the first Hell in the Cell match and devised the plans for the notorious scenes to follow along with Terry Funk. The match will forever be remembered for the two falls that Foley took which most certainly curtailed his career and has left him injured for the rest of his life.


The match started off with both contestants going at one another from the top of the ring. Sections of the cage buckled and broke through under their weight. After a short battle, The Undertaker threw Mankind off the top of the cage through the Spanish announcers' table 16 feet below, narrowly avoiding monitors and other A/V equipment. Medical technicians quickly rushed to his aid and were wheeling mankind out of the arena. All the people there were genuinely concerned including Vince McMahon. But Mankind got up and despite having a dislocated shoulder came and climbed the top of the cage and continued the match




Image Courtesy: wikipedia.org


What happened next was not planned by either the Undertaker or Foley. The Undertaker chokeslammed Foley on the roof of the cage and that that section of the cage gave way under the weight of it’s impact making Foley fall hard into the ring knocking him out cold for a full 2 minutes. To make matters worse, a steel chair lying on the roof of the cage fell through and struck Foley in the face, dislocating his jaw and knocking out one and a half teeth as well as creating a large cut beneath his lip.


The Undertaker himself was wrestling with a broken bone in his foot and he jumped through the hole in the roof on to the ring. Even in his heavily injured state Foley introduced some thumbtacks into the ring. It is a wonder that the two men were able to work the match for much longer after that. Thankfully the Undertaker ended the horror by giving mankind a chokeslam into the thumbtacks and finsihing him off with a tombstone. The match left Foley with a dislocated jaw, a dislocated shoulder, a bruised kidney, 2 broken ribs, one and a half missing teeth, a concussion, and 14 stitches for the cut beneath his lip. Both men defied the limits of physical torture to provide a truly classical and brutal match.




Image Courtesy: wikipedia.org


Undertaker from that point has gone on to change his gimmick as well as reinvent himself. So much so that he is the current winner of the Royal Rumble for the first time. He is also the reigning World Heavyweight Champion. Lot of new young superstars will be trying to challenge him for the title in the coming but what cannot be challenged will be his legacy.



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9 comments:

Geauxing Red said...

I've always enjoyed watching the Undertaker. When Smackdown came to New Olreans a couple years ago (back when Cena was on it and started his "Chain Gang") nothing and I mean NOTHING made that place come alive as it did when the lights went down and the first "dong" sound of his intro began.

I've seen both Hell in a Cell matches you mentioned. The one with HBK is my favorite but I'm so in love with Shawn (sweet chin music all the way, baby). The one with Mick is so brutal you can barely stand to watch it yet there is no way you can't possibly turn away (but truthfully, most of Cactus Jack's matches tend to make me cringe, his poor wife).

His legacy is untouchable to most. Few, in my opinion, can never be touched and Undertaker is most certainly one of them.

Edmund Lau said...

Hi Biby,

You're a wrestling fan also? I'm a huge fan of the Undertaker as well. :)

Anyway, great blogs you have. I'm posting a link on my page to yours immediately.

~ Edmund

waz said...

thanks to Biby Cletus for his comment at me blog! :D
nice entry on Undertaker! i'm a huge fan as well!!! he is GOD! :D

Mistgarden said...

Wow. I had no idea that people were
really reading my posts. Thank you
for the comment and the compliment.
I will try to keep up on the bloggs
while I still have the internet.
I know that I'm going to lose it in
about a month or so. But please by
all means enjoy the stories while I
can still write them. =)
Mistgarden

KJ said...

Hey..u got a cool blog too but how came across my blog?

Mulatto Jesus said...

Great Undertaker content. Thanks for the comment.

MJ

christian said...

Wow, what a crazy random blog! Great post on the Undertaker, but how could you leave out the Undertaker v. Undertaker match!! I lost interest in the WWF a couple years after Macho Man won the title in the Wrestlemania tournament but the Undertaker almost brought me back. Good stuff

Anonymous said...

The Undertaker was never introduced as 'Kane The Undertaker', he has always been known as 'The Undertaker', he made his debut under the name 'The Undertaker' and has always been called that. 'Kane' was introduced as his brother.

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