The Undertaker Retires At Wrestlemania 33
Mark William Calaway began wrestling for the WCCW in 1984 at the age of 19 years old. He would move up to WCW from 1989-1990 as Mean Mark Callous, a gimmick that didn’t seem to catch with folks of the time. But during the Golden Age of Wrestling, he signed with WWF in 1990 and debuted as “The Undertaker”. Fast forward to the year 2017, and you have one of the most impressive wrestling resumes of all time. He would go on “The Streak” in which he was victorious in 23 consecutive Wrestlemania’s. He was a 4 time WWF/WWE Champion, as well as 3 time WWE World Heavyweight Champion. He was also the winner of the 2007 Royal Rumble. Known as one of the greatest gimmicks of the Golden Era, New Generation Era, and Attitude Era. He would remain a star in the company through the Ruthless Aggression Era, PG Era, and Reality TV Era. Let’s take a look back at some of the moments that made him a legend in his 27 years at the WWE.
1990 Survivor Series – Debut On PPV
It’s not common to see a person debut on a live pay per view, but the Undertaker made his presence felt in a match against Bret Hart, Jim Neidhart, Koko B. Ware and Dusty Rhodes, eliminating Koko and Dusty before being counted out after taking the fight with Rhodes to the outside.
1991 Survivor Series – First WWF Championship (def. Hulk Hogan)
The Undertaker became larger than life when he became the youngest (at the time) superstar to win the WWF Championship in a match against Hulk Hogan. At that point in time, Hulk Hogan had been the face of WWF since the mid-80’s.
1994 Royal Rumble – I Will Not Rest In Peace Match (defeated by Yokozuna)
The Undertaker was a force to reckon with heading into the 1994 Royal Rumble. He faced off against Yokozuna in a casket match that will elevate his character to new heights. It would take over ten men to finally bring down the Undertaker and slam the casket on the Phenom. He would eventually come up in the Megatron claiming he “Will Not Rest In Peace” and then ascended into the rafters.
1996 In Your House – Buried Alive Match (defeated by Mankind)
The feud between Undertaker and Mankind reached a breaking point in 1996 when the two faced off in the first-ever “Buried Alive Match”. Paul Bearer had switched his alliance to Mankind recently and this led to some of the most intense rivalries in WWE history. After a closely contested fight, a large amount of the lockers started to clear out towards the end of the match as everyone tried to help Mankind bury the Phenom alive. After being buried, lighting will strike the tomb, only to see a purple glove burst thru the dirt…implying to all that Undertaker would not rest in peace yet again.
1998 King Of The Ring – Hell In A Cell Match (def. Mankind)
The Hell In A Cell match proved to be one of the most brutal matches in the history of the WWE. It produced moments that included off script attendance by medical experts. Undertaker tossed Mankind off the top of the cell 30 feet down into an announcer’s table. Later on, in that same match, Undertaker choke slammed Mankind through the cell and straight down into the ring. A tombstone piledriver over thumb tacks sealed Mankind’s fate as Undertaker came out the victor in this gory match.
1998 Unforgiven – Inferno Match (def. Kane)
In the first ever Inferno Match, the two brothers faced off in a match that can only be won by setting the other on fire. After a long brutal fight, the Undertaker finally gained the upper hand and was able to set Kane’s arm ablaze to win the first ever Inferno Match.
2009 Wrestlemania 25 – Icon vs Icon Match (def. Shawn Michaels)
Widely regarded as one of the greatest matches in the history of Wrestling, the two legends faced off for an incredible singles match at the 25th edition of Wrestlemania. Shawn Michaels was Mr. Wrestlemania himself but he couldn’t topple the Undertaker’s Wrestlemania streak which became 17-0 after the match. The match was awarded Five Stars across the board and rivaled the historic matches such as HBK vs Razor Ramon and Stone Cold vs Bret Hart.