WWE WrestleMania 36 Night 1 Reactions and Post-Show Podcast Review

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Night 1 of WWE WrestleMania 36 is in the bag, meaning it’s time to look back on what happened and assess the damage, praise the positives and talk about what went down.

As I’ve been doing lately, I kept track of my reactions and thoughts throughout each segment tonight. There were some positive moments here and there with plenty of negatives, too.

Check them out below, as well as my regular Smack Talk Pay-Per-Viewpoint post-show podcast at the end of this post, which reviews the event in more detail.

Without further ado, here’s what was running through my mind during WWE WrestleMania 2020 Part 1:


The Kickoff

  • Well, at least they finally announced which matches are happening. Jeez. 2 new ones and an alteration announced earlier today. Ridiculous.
  • To be honest, I spent most of the Drew Gulak vs. Cesaro match trying to put out metaphorical fires and fix all my coverage all over the place, since WWE waited until the last minute.
  • One thing I did get to see that I liked a lot, though, was the airplane spin. That was fun. Cesaro and Drew Gulak are great, and what I saw, I enjoyed for what it was worth. That’s not saying much, as it’s a random pre-show match on the most flat WrestleMania of all time, but still, at least it wasn’t bad.
  • I’m kind of used to all these Skype chats with WWE Backstage and such already. People who owned stock in Zoom and all must be super happy now.
  • A video package America the Beautiful. Strange.
  • Even weirder was the opening video package with the pirate stuff. Not a fan.
  • I wonder what this intro with Rob Gronkowski and Mojo Rawley would have been like if it wasn’t just 2 bros talking to nobody but each other.

Women’s Tag Team Championship Match: The Kabuki Warriors (c) vs. Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross

  • I’m glad JBL is on commentary.
  • Bliss seems fired up and energetic. I like that and appreciate it a lot.
  • Alexa is indeed cute, Kairi. I agree.
  • Why is Nikki clapping to rally the empty crowd?
  • This is pretty good. It’s still awkward as hell, but they’re trying their best.
  • New champions? I didn’t see that coming.

Elias vs. King Corbin

  • So the payoff for the whole Elias fall thing was that he’s just able to wrestle, as scheduled? How lame is that? It’s not like this match had any real buzz to it.
  • Zzzzzzz.
  • Dud. This did nothing for me, and I’m a fan of both guys.

Raw Women’s Championship Match: Becky Lynch (c) vs. Shayna Baszler

  • Oh God. This stupid truck. This is what, the fifth time we’ve seen it? There’s no crowd reaction, obviously. There’s no sounds or anything. This is PAINFUL. Good lord. Why? And Becky Lynch’s mean mug walking into the Performance Center just made me chuckle, instead of think that shit’s about to go down.
  • Smackety smack smack. If they keep striking each other like the start of this, this could be fun.
  • Man, I really miss the crowd popping for some of these things. Seeing Becky fight back would have had the audience excited.
  • So my WWE Network glitched out for me for the ending of this and absolutely refused to let me rewind. I completely missed the finish and I don’t know when I’ll get a chance to watch it if it doesn’t let me rewind. Wonderful.

Intercontinental Championship Match: Sami Zayn (c) vs. Daniel Bryan

  • I was really looking forward to this, but I’m not loving it so far.
  • Wait…it’s over? What the hell?
  • Wow. I’m so, so underwhelmed. This was very disappointing, I didn’t like the ending and…ugh…this sucks.

SmackDown Tag Team Championship Match: John Morrison (c) vs. Kofi Kingston vs. Jimmy Uso

  • Clickety clack.
  • Obviously, this is not at all what this could have been. I’m enjoying it so far, but I’m sad that it isn’t the real match in front of the crowd and all. I hope we get the real triple threat done properly soon.
  • Morrison’s flips always look fairly effortless. No idea how he does that.
  • Kofi’s jump and hurricanrana was great. Dangerous, but great.
  • Morrison with the tightrope and the Spanish Fly was sweet.
  • “Come on, man! Push through!” is that for yourself or for everyone else in solidarity? #JimmyHoffa
  • I’m enjoying the trash talking in this match, like Jimmy Uso saying he’ll flatten Kofi like a pancake.
  • They used a crash pad for Jimmy for that fall on the outside, right? I sure as hell hope so. Off-camera, so it would have been safer.
  • I loved this ending!!!

Kevin Owens vs. Seth Rollins

  • This is just a match. As I’ve been saying for a while, a regular singles match was just not good enough for this to be a 5+ month build’s payoff.
  • They’re trying. I’ll give them that. That’s because they’re two great performers who actually care about their performances. I’m just struggling to get invested in it. None of this is their fault. It’s the environment and the booking that they probably had no say over.
  • A disqualification ending? At WrestleMania? Come on. This is ridiculous. This is some Monday Night Raw crap and there’s no reason for this feud to continue even longer after dragging it out so damn long.
  • Phew. Restarting it as No DQ saves it.
  • Owens jumping off the WrestleMania sign was cool. Listening to Rollins grunting afterward made it seem even better, as that no doubt hurt like hell.
  • Very glad Owens won and this feud should be over and done with.

Universal Championship Match: Goldberg (c) vs. Braun Strowman

  • I wonder how “unique” this is going to be. By that, I mean how many spears they’ll have Goldberg do to beat Strowman in what, 3 minutes?
  • Okay, 3 spears. That’s it.
  • Wow, okay. There’s no way he’s picking him up for a Jackhammer, so I guess it’s 4 spears.
  • Ha. 3 powerslams. Gotta balance it out.
  • 4 powerslams and…wait…the end? Strowman won!?
  • Okay, I’m a huge Strowman fan, so I’m very, very fond of this, even though it’s underwhelming how it happened.

Here, we got a promo for WrestleMania next year in Los Angeles. Good lord, please make sure it’s better than what we got this year.


Boneyard Match: AJ Styles vs. The Undertaker

  • There is absolutely no way WWE maintains the music rights to this song for future broadcasts.
  • I’m not fond of American Badass. The Undertaker is my #2 favorite of all time, but by that, I mean The Deadman. Still, it makes sense here…to an extent.
  • So how are all these druids following the “no more than 10” gathering rule?
  • What did Styles nail Undertaker with?
  • “Get up” = the theme of this match.
  • Of course AJ got that tractor started in the first try. He’s a country boy with the farmer’s strength.
  • Missed opportunity to have Undertaker change his attire when he popped back up, but I still loved that moment.
  • “You still wanna talk? Hey, what’s my wife’s name?” – ha!
  • I was hoping Undertaker would say “You think I’m going to bury you? Nah. You’re going to bury yourself” and hand the shovel to Styles.
  • Hahahahahahahaaha the light show of The Undertaker’s logo, as if it’s someone’s front lawn on Halloween.
  • What the hell was WrestleMania this year?

Stay tuned for for more opinions on the show as a whole in the latest edition of the Smark Out Moment wrestling podcast SMACK TALK, which will be posted below.

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