WWE & TNA Forum
Wrestling News
Loading...


Go Back   WrestleZone Forums > The WrestleZone Forum Archives > The Wrestling Archives
Register FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read
Arcade vBookie

 
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #1  
Old 10-29-2012, 11:17 AM
The Brain's Avatar
The Brain The Brain is offline
Global Moderator
X-Division Champion
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 2,573
The Brain is getting phone calls from TNA...The Brain is getting phone calls from TNA...The Brain is getting phone calls from TNA...The Brain is getting phone calls from TNA...The Brain is getting phone calls from TNA...The Brain is getting phone calls from TNA...The Brain is getting phone calls from TNA...The Brain is getting phone calls from TNA...The Brain is getting phone calls from TNA...The Brain is getting phone calls from TNA...The Brain is getting phone calls from TNA...
Default Undertaker's Streak: The Early Years

After reading several WrestleMania threads over the years there seems to be a common opinion regarding the use of the Undertaker during his early years. For this thread I am going to discuss three of Taker’s earliest matches and attempt to make you realize they were the right matches for him at the time.

WrestleMania VII vs. Superfly Jimmy Snuka

I don’t read as much criticism about this match as the other two I will discuss but there seems to be a lot of people who don’t care for this one either. When thinking about this match please keep the timeframe in mind. Taker debuted only four months before WM7. He got a good push from the beginning but was not set up to join WWF and immediately take over the main event. Jimmy Snuka was a good opponent for a new up and coming star. Snuka was clearly past his prime but he still had a legacy and a reputation. Many people seem to forget that Superfly was the original Phenom in the WWF. Taker beat Snuka convincingly and became the Phenom to start a streak that no one ever planned.

WrestleMania IX vs. Giant Gonzalez

This is the match that probably receives the most criticism. A lot of people actually think Taker should have wrestled Hulk Hogan at this event. That makes no sense. This was Taker’s third mania and although he was one of the bigger stars in the company by this time, he was not yet the star he would go on to become. Taker vs. Hogan had already happened so it’s not like Taker wasn’t ready for him but it didn’t make sense at the time. Taker was over as a face so why would he go against the biggest face ever in his return match after a one year layoff? There would be no logical story for Hogan to return and target Taker, and no reason to turn the fans against Taker.

Giant Gonzalez was the right opponent for Taker at WM9. In 1993 nobody was thinking about giving Taker some kind of legendary name as an opponent for mania so 20 years later his WrestleMania resume would look more impressive. People want to go back in time and play fantasy booker. That’s fine. I do it too. When you do that you can’t use your knowledge of the future to criticize the past. Do you really think that anyone thought Taker would eventually be 20-0 at mania and the streak would become such a huge story? Of course not. Undertaker vs. Giant Gonzalez was the right match for 1993 despite you looking over his list of opponents 20 years later and not liking Gonzalez’s name being part of the list. But Brain, it was such a shit match. It doesn’t matter. That match was all about the visual. A 7’7 giant towering over Undertaker was quite a sight. How would Taker handle someone so big? Sure, the match was shit but so what. The hype was there and that’s just as important. Taker vs. Gonzalez was an intriguing match in 1993. If you were watching back then you wanted to see it. That’s what matters.

WrestleMania XI vs. King Kong Bundy

I guess Bret Hart would have worked but it’s not like that was a must see match in 1995. I’m not going to defend this one as much as I did Gonzalez but I don’t think Bundy was a bad choice for Taker’s opponent at WM11. Bundy was a big star in the 80s and recently returned to the WWF. There were obviously hopes that Bundy could pick up where he left off years earlier and be a top heel again. The only way to make that happen was to put him against a top face. The WWF gave up on Bundy after that match but when Bundy returned it was reasonable to think he could be a top guy again. If you watched WM11 for the first time years after it happened, you probably thought the match was garbage. If you watched WM11 live you probably thought the match was garbage. If you were watching the WWF in 1995 before WM11 you probably thought Taker vs. Bundy was a good match for mania. Sometimes things don’t work out but that doesn’t mean it was wrong to try.

I’m not saying these were my favorite Taker matches or that they compare to some of his others. My point is you should not take what you know in 2012 and use that information to criticize what was done 20 years earlier. I think we all agree that the streak was something the just happened over time. It was not planned and when they realized what happened by chance WWE wisely decided to make a story out of it. If in 1991 Vince sat down before mania and said ‘I want this guy to be a big star and go undefeated at WrestleMania for 20 years. Let’s put him up against the biggest names possible so his streak looks impressive a couple decades from now’ you would have an argument against these matches. Clearly that did not happen and Vince booked his shows based on the reality of the time. How can you fault him for that?
sendpm.gif
  #2  
Old 10-29-2012, 11:45 AM
deanerandterry's Avatar
deanerandterry deanerandterry is offline
Registered User
WCW TV Champion
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Calgary
Age: 28
Posts: 1,758
deanerandterry scored a win over Santino Marella...deanerandterry scored a win over Santino Marella...deanerandterry scored a win over Santino Marella...deanerandterry scored a win over Santino Marella...deanerandterry scored a win over Santino Marella...deanerandterry scored a win over Santino Marella...deanerandterry scored a win over Santino Marella...deanerandterry scored a win over Santino Marella...deanerandterry scored a win over Santino Marella...deanerandterry scored a win over Santino Marella...deanerandterry scored a win over Santino Marella...
Default

Well you're right Brain but then again you already knew that.

It's not fair to take a situation that happened 20 years ago and measure it by today's standards you most certainly have to look at it from the time frame it was done. I agree with all the matches that it was the best thing for Taker to do at that specific time in all cases. Giant Gonzalez was a pretty awful wrestler but it wasn't about that, at the time it made perfect sense. Wippleman was pissed off with what Taker did to Kamala and promised a bomb shell, who better to use than a guy who makes Taker look small and through sheer size alone looks like he could annihilate the dead man? At WM9 there was really no one else for Taker to face and at the time he was the perfect opponent. I still remember being excited for their return match at Summerslam as a kid because I wanted to see Taker finally beat this guy for all the shit he did to him throughout their feud.

Bundy was the same thing. I still remember his return vignettes when he came back. They booked him to be unstoppable, had him return squashing guys doing his infamous "five count" and at the time how would anyone know that Bundy couldn't pick up where he left off? Of course they didn't and had to try and once again Bundy was a great heel in his time, was a monster and was a great person to feed to the Undertaker.

With Taker having high quality matches in his later years it makes it easy to trash Taker's earlier matches by comparison but that happens a lot. Even though the matches were awful it doesn't mean from a booking decision they were bad ideas. Sometimes the match doesn't live up to the hype and as a result you get people bitching about things such as this. Frankly I think its unfair for any new fan to comment on such things because they weren't around and they only know the match itself, they don't know the build up and don't understand why it was done in the first place.
__________________

Last edited by deanerandterry : 10-29-2012 at 11:47 AM.
sendpm.gif
  #3  
Old 10-29-2012, 11:55 AM
shooter_mcgavin shooter_mcgavin is offline
Registered User
WWE Women's Champion
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 986
shooter_mcgavin worked a dark match on ECW recently...shooter_mcgavin worked a dark match on ECW recently...shooter_mcgavin worked a dark match on ECW recently...shooter_mcgavin worked a dark match on ECW recently...shooter_mcgavin worked a dark match on ECW recently...shooter_mcgavin worked a dark match on ECW recently...shooter_mcgavin worked a dark match on ECW recently...shooter_mcgavin worked a dark match on ECW recently...
Default

Regarding Undertaker and King Kong Bundy ... I believe this was a war between Taker and The Million Dollar Corporation. Now with the exception of Debiase, who wasn't fit to wrestle anymore, from the get go I would think Tatanka would have made a better opponent. Tatanka had a huge following and was a pretty big deal during that era.

As for Undertaker at WMIX you are probably right that Gonzales was the best option at a time when the roster was rather thin. I would think Undertaker might have Wrestled Yokozuna if WMIX had Bret facing Savage or Hogan instead. Though looking back Yoko was in line for a monster push and wouldn't be surprised of Yoko went over that night meaning the streak would never had happened.

Any yes Brain you are right, the first real big match Taker had at WM was against Diesel though, to be honest, I never really like that match ant thought it was boring. As blasphemous as it sounds I actually enjoyed Taker vs. Sid more at WM13, and yes I thought that match was ok. His first "great" match was a year later with Kane and even then it took 3 years for another epic match up with Triple H.

Last edited by shooter_mcgavin : 10-29-2012 at 12:04 PM.
sendpm.gif
  #4  
Old 10-29-2012, 02:50 PM
ItsTimmyB ItsTimmyB is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 7
ItsTimmyB is looking to come up from OCW...
Default

Bundy was the largest guy in the Corporation therefore it made more sense for DiBiase to send Bundy after 'Taker.

Tatanka wasn't a big guy.

Same thing with Giant Gonzalez. The match was shit, but it was an era where fans wanted the larger than life. Who else could have stood toe to toe with 'Taker?

A match I would have wanted to see was Taker/Yoko at Mania following Yoko and Co beating 'Taker in that Casket Match at Survivor Series. 'Taker comes back to get his revenge on Yoko at Mania... (Although TBH I don't remember 100% the chain of events leading up to that years mania.)

Taker beat Jake Roberts in his second Mania match. Roberts is considered one of the best ever (more for his psychology, but he's still Jake "The Snake").

I often wonder when VKM decided 'Taker would have this epic streak. Was it at 5-0? 10-0? It seems like it was, at first, just a fortunate accident.
sendpm.gif
  #5  
Old 10-29-2012, 06:37 PM
Somewhat Large Gonzalez's Avatar
Somewhat Large Gonzalez Somewhat Large Gonzalez is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 44
Somewhat Large Gonzalez is looking to come up from OCW...
Default

The only other possible opponent for WM9 would have been Bam Bam Bigelow. However, I'm fine with the GG match. Brain is right; it was all about the spectacle of seeing a monster tower over The Undertaker. I was a kid at the time, and GG freaked me out.
sendpm.gif
  #6  
Old 10-29-2012, 06:58 PM
dimice76's Avatar
dimice76 dimice76 is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 36
dimice76 is looking to come up from OCW...
Default

I've posted this a million times but we should never forget, that if Nash (Diesel) wasn't going to WCW, he would of beaten 'Taker then jump into his feud with HBK. Also the match with Jake was originally suppose to be 'Taker as a heel vs a Face Sid Justice. 'Taker would of lost that match as Sid was going to launch into a huge face run leading to an eventual showdown with Hogan later on. So the streak could of ended before it even began.
sendpm.gif
  #7  
Old 10-29-2012, 07:57 PM
HBsam31's Avatar
HBsam31 HBsam31 is offline
Totally Reeking of Awesomeness
X-Division Champion
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Age: 34
Posts: 2,482
HBsam31 scored a win over Santino Marella...HBsam31 scored a win over Santino Marella...HBsam31 scored a win over Santino Marella...HBsam31 scored a win over Santino Marella...HBsam31 scored a win over Santino Marella...HBsam31 scored a win over Santino Marella...HBsam31 scored a win over Santino Marella...HBsam31 scored a win over Santino Marella...HBsam31 scored a win over Santino Marella...HBsam31 scored a win over Santino Marella...HBsam31 scored a win over Santino Marella...
Default

I don't have a problem with any of these matches even looking back. The match with Jimmy Snuka was a great first Wrestlemania opponent for Taker. Snuka had a storied career and was the original phenom of the WWE. He was at the end of his career, but was still a huge win for Taker. THe Giant Gonzalez match, like others have said including The Brain was more about the spectacle than anything else. Did anyone really think we were going to get a match of the year from that one? The only thing I would have changed was I would have had Taker go over clean. Gonzalez wasn't really used much after that, and I am sure they knew they weren't going to get much more out of him than they did so why not have Taker get the pin. Bundy was a huge heel in his day, and while he didn't work out as well when he came back he was still the largest man in The Million Dollar Corporation. It made sense at the time for him to defend the corporation against Taker at Mania. The match that i find the most odd in the streak was the Undertaker vs Big Show and A Train at Mania 19. I can't remember the circumstance of that match, was Taker supposed to have a partner or something? Taker vs big Show would have made more sense to me. It's hard to look back now and say this should have been that way or this should have been this way, and overall I think everything went as best as it could as far as streak opponents go.
sendpm.gif
  #8  
Old 10-30-2012, 09:30 AM
RicSpade's Avatar
RicSpade RicSpade is offline
Mr. All-in
WWE Diva's Champion
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: michigan
Posts: 494
RicSpade is looking to come up from OCW...RicSpade is looking to come up from OCW...RicSpade is looking to come up from OCW...RicSpade is looking to come up from OCW...
Default

Honestly I would've loved Taker vs Luger at wm9, instead of him vs Henning. Yes it built the WM 10 match with the referee angle, but I mean your trying to get over a guy as a heel, and it would've made the face turn a little later make sense.
__________________
What if Raven knew it really was all about him to begin with? Would he have continued to wonder what about him?
sendpm.gif
  #9  
Old 10-30-2012, 10:19 AM
dd23beatlesfan1's Avatar
dd23beatlesfan1 dd23beatlesfan1 is offline
Registered User
Comedy Jobber For Life: AKA Santino
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Age: 30
Posts: 272
dd23beatlesfan1 is looking to come up from OCW...dd23beatlesfan1 is looking to come up from OCW...dd23beatlesfan1 is looking to come up from OCW...dd23beatlesfan1 is looking to come up from OCW...dd23beatlesfan1 is looking to come up from OCW...dd23beatlesfan1 is looking to come up from OCW...dd23beatlesfan1 is looking to come up from OCW...dd23beatlesfan1 is looking to come up from OCW...
Default

Of the three matches brought up in this thread by the Brain, the only one, even as a fan watching at the time and thus understood the buildup and all that, that I agree with was the first match with Jimmy Snuka.

Honestly I had never heard anyone criticize that matchup until a day or two ago where I read the worst booked Wrestlemania events thread and someone mentioned that Taker should've had someone better than Snuka to fight. I wholeheartedly disagree with that assessment. The Brain was pretty much spot on. Taker was still a rookie who only debuted 4 months prior to the event at the 1990 Survivor Series. Taker shouldn't have been in a main event match at that point nor was WWE planning on putting him in the main event that quickly I don't believe. And Jimmy Snuka was the perfect guy to put him over. A future HOFer (at the time), and one of the "living legends" wrestling at that time period. Keep in mind that at one point in the 80's Snuka was the top babyface in the WWE (before Hogan arrived), so Snuka was a one time huge star, and Taker dominating him as he did was perfect booking. Snuka was definitely the right guy. Could've there have been someone else? Maybe. Texas Tornado might not have been bad as he was pretty popular at that point and had just come off an I-C title run, but overall Snuka was the right choice.


When we get to Wrestlemania IX, however is when I start to disagree with the Brain. Not to discredit the angle going in. It made sense and yes the match wasn't meant to be a classic as hardly any of Taker's feuds in his first few years were meant to be about good matches, and as a young kid watching, yes I was in awe of Giant Gonzalez. But even still, I think they could've come up with something better for Taker than Giant Gonzalez. I personally feel that Bam Bam Bigelow would've made for a much better opponent. The angle would'nt have been quite the same as Bam Bam had nothing to do with Harvey Whippleman, and obviously Bam Bam didn't tower over Taker, but Bam Bam was bigger weight wise and could've been a big threat to Taker. And the match would've been WAYYYYYY better. I actually think it's ridiculous that Bam Bam wasn't even on the card at Wrestlemania IX at all. A matchup with Taker would've given Taker a better, more interesting feud, and match, and it would've given Bam Bam a spot on the card like he should've gotten.

As for Wrestlemania XI. Bundy was a better choice than Giant Gonzalez was for Taker at Wrestlemania IX. If they were gonna continue the Taker/Million Dollar Corporation feud like they did, than Bundy was the right choice. Yes, Tatanka was more established at this point than Bundy (although Tatanka was already losing his heat and stature at this point anyway), but I don't think anyone would've viewed Tatanka as being a threat to Taker. Bundy was the right choice, again, unless Bam Bam had nothing to do at Wrestlemania (which obviously wasn't the case). But with that said, I'm still of the belief that WWE was ready for a big time Wrestlemania championship matchup between the top two babyfaces of the company at that point, TAker and Bret. Forget Diesel. Diesel was Vince's top babyface, not the fans. To the fans, Taker and Bret were the top two dogs. And I don't think this is just "looking back-fantasy booking" going here. Keep in mind that less than a year later, Taker and Bret finally had their first one on one matchup as babyfaces at their peak, at the 96 Rumble. I think Taker at this point was ready to move beyond the giant/behometh feuds and move into the championship picture and main event with Bret. People might say it wouldn't have drawn, but you're telling me that HBK/Diesel was a better draw than what Taker/Bret could've been? No way. As has been pointed out a lot. Diesel/HBK didn't need to be for the championship. THey had their own feud going. And actually it might have benefited Kevin Nash to not get so rushed into the World Title picture like he did. But with that said, beings they weren't gonna go that route, then sticking Taker with the Million Dollar Corporation and thus King Kong Bundy was a solid booking move.

Another possibility would've been to save the blow-off match of the feud with Taker and Yoko for Wrestlemania XI rather than have it at Survivor Series 94. Though I think it would've been a stretch to build that feud for such a long time. It was ready to end by Survivor Series 94.


But point being, while Taker's choice for opponents at that time frame made sense and were logical, especially at that time, that doesn't mean that they still couldn't have come up with better stuff (even with what they had at the time).
sendpm.gif
  #10  
Old 10-30-2012, 02:42 PM
The Fabulous Rougeau's's Avatar
The Fabulous Rougeau's The Fabulous Rougeau's is offline
Registered User
Knockout Champion
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 619
The Fabulous Rougeau's is looking to come up from OCW...The Fabulous Rougeau's is looking to come up from OCW...The Fabulous Rougeau's is looking to come up from OCW...The Fabulous Rougeau's is looking to come up from OCW...The Fabulous Rougeau's is looking to come up from OCW...The Fabulous Rougeau's is looking to come up from OCW...The Fabulous Rougeau's is looking to come up from OCW...The Fabulous Rougeau's is looking to come up from OCW...
Default

Can't really find fault in Takers WM VII or IX matches because he was still young and on his way up. However, by WM XI, he started to emerge as a top face with his battle with Yoko, and once he returned by SS 94 he should have stepped back into a top face role. Instead they started the whole thing with DiBiasi and the Million Dollar Corporation that lasted too long and had too many poor opponents for Taker.

Once Taker came back at SummerSlam he should have been placed in bigger storylines against top WWF talent. Back then, that talent consisted of;

Bret Hart
Diesel
Shawn Michaels
Razor Ramon
Lex Luger
British Bulldog
Owen Hart

These are the guys he should have faced. Not fake Taker, IRS, Bundy and Kama.
__________________


All American Boys
sendpm.gif
 


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:40 AM.

monitoring_string = "afb8e5d7348ab9e99f73cba908f10802"
Contact Us - Clear Cookies - Lost Password - WrestleZone Forums - Archive - Privacy Statement - Terms of Use - Top - AdChoices

Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
WrestleZone.com is a property of CraveOnline Media, LLC, an Evolve Media, LLC company. 2014 All Rights Reserved.