My apologies to Drew McIntyre. I also apologize to pretty much every superstar who will be performing on day 2. If WrestleMania 36 ended with just a 1-day, 3-hour show, The Undertaker and AJ Styles would have made it worth staying up and watching.
The good thing, there is a day 2, and even more exciting is the anticipation of a second gimmick match outside the closed Performance Center studio.
Sure, I’m entertained by WrestleMania so far. Each performer is giving it everything they got in the most unlikely of situations. The fault would never be put on them. In fact, I’d go so far as to say I’ve been more impressed by each match and the dynamics of the story, given the lack of such, during the 3-hour spectacle.
Every matchup has been unique in its portrayal on the grandest stage. If you excuse this WrestleMania from every other in past history, you can appreciate the work given to entertain all of us.
However, I believe there’s only one exception to that rule.
Undertaker AND AJ Styles proved that without a ring, without a crowd, without announcers, and without much build, you can tell the most wonderful and beautiful story. One that rivals the WrestleMania events of before.
The chemistry between the two was exactly how you’d imagine the main event of WrestleMania to be. WWE took two veterans, but with completely different fight styles, and made wrestling magic.
No, it wasn’t like watching a 30-minute in-ring technical matchup between Shawn Michaels and Kurt Angle. It’s not fair to compare this match to any other match, because it wasn’t a match. It was a fight.
It was a beautifully drawn out cinematic masterpiece that drew you away from the saddened world around us and allowed you to sit back (or for some, sit on the edge of the seat), and become mesmerized by its film and its editing.
All too often, the main event of WrestleMania is settled with some form of controversy attached. WWE made the right call by making the boneyard match the main event of night one. No other match on the card could have done such justice this match did for the company on the biggest night of the year.
This wasn’t an Undertaker match you should compare previous affairs to either. This was an Undertaker fight that future matches and character development should be studied upon.
There’s no need to have every match shot and filmed in a cinematic POV. Professional wrestling can still survive in the current filming style. However, with consideration of many factors, including health, age, move set, and story build, positioning the Undertaker in this setup, demonstrates that the deadman character will never fade away into darkness based on current product and talent.
Not everyone will agree to have loved this as much as I did. But, not only did the boneyard gimmick match pay off, it could arguably be the greatest last ride for the Undertaker – IF that were to be.