Wrestling News, Analysis and Commentary

 
News  -/-  Recaps  -/-  Columns  -/-  Features  -/-  Reference  -/-  Archives  -/-  Interact  -/-  Site Info
 

Donate to Online Onslaught!
CLICK HERE TO HELP KEEP OO ALIVE!
MAIN PAGE
NEWS
     Daily Onslaught
RECAPS
     RAW
     SmackDown!
     PPV
     NWA-TNA
     Heat
     Velocity
     Other 
COLUMNS
     Obtuse Angle
     RAW Satire
     The Broad
         Perspective

     Inside the Ropes
     OOld Tyme
         Rasslin' Revue
    
Circa/Dungeon 
     Title Wave
    
Crashing the
         Boards

     Deconstruction
     Smarky Awards
     Big in Japan
     Guest Columnists
     2 Out of 3 Falls
     Devil's Due
     The Ring
     The Little Things
     Timeline
    
SK Rants
    
The Mac Files
     Sq'd Circle Jerk
     TWiFW
FEATURES
     RAW vs. SD!:
         Brand Battle
 
     Cheap Heat 
     Year in Review
     Monday Wars
     Road to WM 

     Interviews
REFERENCE
     Title Histories
     Real Names
     PPV Results
     Smart Glossary
     Birthdays 
ARCHIVES 
INTERACT
     Message Boards
     Live Chat 
SITE INFO
     Contact
     OO History

If you attend a live show, or have any other news for us, just send an e-mail to this address!  We'd also love to hear from you if you've got suggestions or complaints about the site...  let us have it!

 
OO ROAD TO WRESTLEMANIA
Road to WrestleMania X-8: A Compulsive 
Fan's Guide to the Granddaddy of 'Em All
Part One of Four

by Rick Scaia
OnlineOnslaught.com

 

A Year-by-Year Guide to WrestleManias Past...

Every WrestleMania has had at least one signature moment... sure, some Manias are remembered more fondly than others, others deserved to be panned, but none have been completely forgotten. Here, I'll try to capture the highlights, flavor, (and maybe a few personal reminisces) of each event in bullet form.

For more detailed recaps of each event, please make use of the link to the Scott Keith Rant for each event.  They should give you plenty of material to help you kill time until the meatier portions of the Road to WM Feature are published, serial-style, in coming days!  [Just please don't tell anybody at SportsLine that I'm using them as my own personal OO Archive!] 

Here are some of the highlights of the first 17 years of "WrestleMania."

WrestleMania
Capped off with Hulk Hogan and Mr. T vanquishing the evil duo of Roddy Piper and Paul Orndorff, this event also featured Andre the Giant beating Big John Studd in a bodyslam challenge match, the hated tag team of the Iron Sheik and Nikolai Volkoff winning the WWF Tag Team Titles from Barry Windham and Mike Rotundo, and King Kong Bundy squashing SD Jones in 9 seconds. Celebs in attendance included Cyndi Lauper (who managed Wendi Richter to a Ladies' Title victory over Lelani Kai), Muhammad Ali (who was a guest ref for the main event), Billy Martin, Liberace, and the Rockettes.
(READ SCOTT KEITH'S FULL RETRO RANT FOR WM1)

WrestleMania 2
The only wrestling event to ever emanate from three separate venues, the second WrestleMania saw Hulk Hogan emerge victorious from a bloody cage match against King Kong Bundy. At other venues, highlights included Andre the Giant winning a 20 man Battle Royal (that featured many NFL stars), the British Bulldogs winning the WWF Tag Team titles from the Dream Team, and Mr. T getting a disqualification win over Roddy Piper in a boxing match. Notable celebs included Ozzy Osbourne (who is obviously the coolest celeb ever at WrestleMania), Tommy Lasorda, Elvira, and the "Where's the Beef?" lady.
(READ SCOTT KEITH'S FULL RETRO RANT FOR WM2)

WrestleMania III
WrestleMania may well have peaked in its third year, drawing a record indoor crowd to watch Hulk Hogan bodyslam and pin the seemingly unbeatable Andre the Giant. This show also featured what is widely regarded as one of the greatest matches since the advent of PPV, as Ricky Steamboat won the InterContinental Title from Randy Savage. Although he remains active to this day, Roddy Piper also "retired" from wrestling after beating the late Adrian Adonis at this event. Celebs of note included Alice Cooper, Bob Uecker, and Mary Hart.  This was my first WrestleMania, as it aired on a big screen closed circuit TV in my hometown; Steamboat/Savage was so intense, I actually bruised by hand POUNDING on the metal railing in front of me!
(READ SCOTT KEITH'S FULL RETRO RANT FOR WM3)

WrestleMania IV
The WWF Title was up for grabs in a 14-man tournament. In a second-round battle of favorites, Hulk Hogan and Andre the Giant went to a double disqualification, eliminating both men from contention. In the eventual final, Randy Savage got help from Hulk Hogan, and defeated Ted DiBiase to begin his first reign as WWF champ. Demolition began their domination of the WWF tag scene at this show as well, winning their first titles by beating Strike Force. Bob Uecker was back again for this 'Mania.  At four hours long, this still clocks in as the longest WM ever.
(READ SCOTT KEITH'S FULL RETRO RANT FOR WM4)

WrestleMania V
The "explosion of the Mega Powers" took place at this event, as Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage tossed aside a successful year of teaming up to battle for Savage's WWF Title in the main event. Hogan walked away the new champ, beginning his second reign. Highlighting the undercard was Rick Rude's win over the Ultimate Warrior to become the IC champ. Roddy Piper made a non-wrestling return to the WWF here, hosting a special Piper's Pit, and humiliating Brother Love and Morton Downey Jr. in the process.
(READ SCOTT KEITH'S FULL RETRO RANT FOR WM5)

WrestleMania VI
The Ultimate Warrior stepped to the head of the class, eclipsing Hulk Hogan in the "title vs. title" main event of WM6 to take over the reigns of the WWF. The match, between two men not usually well regarded for their ring skills, still ranks among the most memorable and dramatic of all time. Also at this show -- which filled up the Toronto SkyDome -- Roddy Piper proved retirement can be temporary by returning to brawl against Bad News Brown. Steve Allen was among the celebs to turn out for the show.
(READ SCOTT KEITH'S FULL RETRO RANT FOR WM6)

WrestleMania VII
Playing off the recently-ended Gulf War, the "Real American" Hulk Hogan topped off one of the more embarrassing feuds in WWF history by defeating "Iraqi sympathizer" Sgt. Slaughter to regain the WWF Title in WM7's main event. Randy Savage, following in Roddy Piper's footsteps, also wrestled in a meaningless "retirement" match, losing to the Ultimate Warrior. This 'Mania also saw the end of the original Hart Foundation, as Bret Hart and Jim Neidhart lost the WWF tag titles, and moved into singles action. Willie Nelson was chief among the celebs in attendance.
(READ SCOTT KEITH'S FULL RETRO RANT FOR WM7)

WrestleMania VIII
The third "dome" WrestleMania, this show featured a double main event. For starters, Randy Savage toppled Ric Flair (making his only WM appearance) to win the WWF Title for a second time. Closing out the show, Hulk Hogan settled for a DQ win over Sid Justice when Papa Shango interfered; the Ultimate Warrior made a shocking return to the WWF to save Hogan. Also on the show, Bret Hart won his second IC Title, beating Roddy Piper. This WM also marked the beginning of Shawn Michaels' post-Rockers singles career, as he handed Tito Santana his seventh consecutive WM loss.  I was there in person in Indianapolis, making this my only live WM.
(READ SCOTT KEITH'S FULL RETRO RANT FOR WM8)

WrestleMania IX
Yokozuna made history on this night, as the only man ever to win the WWF Title and lose it via pinfall in the very same night. In the scheduled main event of the show, Yoko pinned Bret Hart to win the strap; less than two minutes later, Yoko was pinned by Hulk Hogan in an unscheduled, but sanctioned, match. Earlier on the show Hogan had teamed with Brutus Beefcake in an unsuccessful attempt to win the WWF Tag Titles from Money, Inc. This is widely regarded to be one of the least entertaining Manias....  yet, in one of my more shameful displays, I felt so strongly attached to my newfound role as "WWF Cheerleader" at the time that I found it necessary to strongly praise the show in an RSPW debate versus the Immortal Herb Kunze.  Ouch.
(READ SCOTT KEITH'S FULL RETRO RANT FOR WM9)

WrestleMania X
After a "tie" at the Royal Rumble, both Lex Luger and Bret Hart were scheduled to receive WWF Title shots at this 'Mania. Luger failed in his attempt, losing to Yokozuna. But Bret Hart rebounded from a loss to his brother Owen (in a fantastic show-opener) to defeat Yoko, as both men were wrestling their second match of the night, to win his second WWF Title. However, stealing the show was another of the Great WrestleMania Matches of All Time, as Razor Ramon topped Shawn Michaels in a Ladder Match for the IC Title. Burt Reynolds was among the celebs tapped to appear on the show; he may not have been totally sober.
(READ SCOTT KEITH'S FULL RETRO RANT FOR WM10)

WrestleMania XI
Lawrence Taylor made sports page headlines when he faced Bam Bam Bigelow in one of the co-main events of the eleventh 'Mania. LT won the match, as he was seconded by an "All Pro" squad (including former WCW star -- and former husband of WWF star Debra -- Steve McMichael) and serenaded by Salt 'n' Pepa. In the other marquee match, Diesel retained the WWF Title, beating Shawn Michaels. Both Bigelow and Michaels would turn babyface in the near future.
(READ SCOTT KEITH'S FULL RETRO RANT FOR WM11)

WrestleMania XII
One of the truly memorable 'Manias, #12 saw Shawn Michaels defeat Bret Hart nearly 65 minutes into an "Ironman" match to win the WWF Title. Neither man dropped a fall in 60 minutes of action, and the match progressed to overtime. In another unforgettable affair, Roddy Piper and Goldust brawled in a Hollywood backlot before the battle moved to the Anaheim Pond, where bloodied Piper finally beat and defrocked Goldust. WM12 also marked the beginning of the Ultimate Warrior's latest short-lived return to the WWF, as he beat Hunter Hearst Helmsley.
((READ SCOTT KEITH'S FULL RETRO RANT FOR WM12)

WrestleMania 13
Nearly six years after he first pinned Hulk Hogan to become the WWF champ, the Undertaker finally made good on an opportunity to regain that coveted strap, beating Sid in the title match main event of this show. But the match that nobody will ever forget from the thirteenth 'Mania was Bret Hart and Steve Austin's Submission Match. The two men reversed roles in the course of the match, as Austin -- despite being badly bloodied and a loser in the match -- was treated to a standing ovation by the crowd while Bret was booed after the match.  An awesome match on an otherwise dreadfully lacking edition of WrestleMania.
(READ SCOTT KEITH'S FULL RETRO RANT FOR WM13)

WrestleMania XIV
Without a doubt, the big story at the fourteenth WrestleMania was the participation of boxing mega-star Mike Tyson in the main event.  Tyson, who had masqueraded as a member of the Shawn Michaels-led Degeneration X, turned on Michaels in the main event world title match, assisting Stone Cold Steve Austin in gaining his first WWF Title in front of an ecstatic crowd.  Also on the show:  the Undertaker made it seven wins and zero losses in WM matches, while Rocky Maivia made his second successful IC Title defense in as many WM appearances.  Pete Rose and Gennifer Flowers were among other non-Tyson celebs on hand.
(READ SCOTT KEITH'S FULL RETRO RANT FOR WM14)

WrestleMania XV
It seems like decades ago, but it was only back at WM15 that the Rock was a hated heel...  and it was at that show that he was struck down by the beloved Steve Austin, as Stone Cold won the WWF Title in the WM main event for the second consecutive year.  While the Undertaker and Big Bossman soiled the Hell in the Cell gimmick with a plodding affair, the undercard was spruced up by the near in-ring assassination of Bart Gunn by Brian "Butterbean" Esch in a brutal Brawl For All match.  The show also saw the PPV wrestling debut of Shane McMahon as well as a a heel turn for Triple H that turned out incredibly well.  Also of note:  Pete Rose returned to WrestleMania for the second consecutive year, to once again be Tombstoned by Kane.
(READ SCOTT KEITH'S FULL RETRO RANT FOR WM15)

WrestleMania 2000
For the first time since the original WrestleMania, the main event at the Granddaddy of 'em All featured more than two men.  And for the fist time ever, a heel won said main event.  In a four corners match, Triple H made WWF history by retaining his WWF Title over the Rock, Mick Foley, and the Big Show.  But the show was stolen by the undercard, which featured the strongest "debuting class" of talent EVER at a WrestleMania:  WM rookies Chris Benoit, Chris Jericho, and Kurt Angle battled for the "EuroContinental" title, while fellow rooks the Dudleys, Hardys, and Edge/Christian waged war in a wild Tables and Ladders match.  And again, Pete Rose appeared and made a (futile-but-hilarious) attempt to avenge himself upon Kane.
(READ SCOTT KEITH'S FULL RETRO RANT FOR WM2000)

WrestleMania X-7
Nine years after the WWF last used a dome for WM, nearly 70,000 fans packed the Houston AstroDome for what was immediately hailed by fans as an Instant Classic.  The undercard itself was stellar, featuring: (1) the Hardys, Dudleys, and Edge/Christian wowing fans for the second straight year, (2) a surprisingly high-spot-laden Sports Entertainment Segment between Shane and Vince McMahon, (3) a technical masterpiece between Kurt Angle and Chris Benoit, and (4) the Undertaker's best WM match ever, as he defeated Triple H.  But the main event stole the headlines as Steve Austin took the WWF Title from the Rock, but shockingly turned heel in the process, marking the second consecutive year a heel left Mania with the big strap.
(READ SCOTT KEITH'S FULL RETRO RANT FOR WMX-7)

What will be the memories we take away from the eighteenth installment of WrestleMania? We'll find out soon enough....

Road to WM Navigation
HOME  -/-  YEAR-BY-YEAR  -/-  WINNERS & LOSERS  -/-  
OBSCURE OBSERVATIONS
  -/-  WM X-8 PREVIEW

E-MAIL RICK 
RETURN TO OO FEATURES HOME


  
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Bonding Exercises
 
RAW RECAP: The New Guy Blows It
 
PPV RECAP: WWE Night of Champions 2012
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: 18 Seconds? NO! NO! NO!
 
RAW RECAP: The Show Must Go On
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: The Boot Gets the Boot
 
RAW RECAP: Heyman Lands an Expansion Franchise
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Losing is the new Winning
 
RAW RECAP: Say My Name
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Deja Vu All Over Again
 
RAW RECAP: Dignity Before Gold?
 
PPV RECAP: SummerSlam 2012
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Backfired!
 
RAW RECAP: Bigger IS Better
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Hitting with Two Strikes
 
RAW RECAP: Heel, or Tweener?
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Destiny Do-Over
 
RAW RECAP: CM Punk is Not a Fan of Dwayne
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: The Returnening
 
RAW RECAP: Countdown to 1000
 
PPV RECAP: WWE Money in the Bank 2012
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Friday Night ZackDown
 
RAW RECAP: Closure's a Bitch
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: In-BRO-pendence Day
 
RAW RECAP: Crazy Gets What Crazy Wants
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Five Surprising MitB Deposits
 
RAW RECAP: Weeeellll, It's a Big MitB
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: #striketwo
 
RAW RECAP: Johnny B. Gone
 
PPV RECAP: WWE No Way Out 2012
 
RAW RECAP: Crazy Go Nuts
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: You're Welcome
 
RAW RECAP: Be a Star, My Ass
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Needs More Kane?
 
RAW RECAP: You Can't See Him
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Lady Power
 
RAW RECAP: Big Johnny Still in Charge
 
PPV RECAP: WWE Over the Limit 2012
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: One Gullible Fella
 
RAW RECAP: Anvil, or Red Herring?
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Everybody Hates Berto
 
RAW RECAP: Look Who's Back
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Care to go Best of Five?
 
RAW RECAP: An Ace Up His Sleeve
 
PPV RECAP: WWE Extreme Rules 2012
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Sh-Sh-Sheamus and the nOObs
 
RAW RECAP: Edge, the Motivational Speaker?
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: AJ is Angry, Jilted
 
RAW RECAP: Maybe Cena DOES Suck?
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: No! No! No!
 
RAW RECAP: Brock's a Jerk
 
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Back with a Bang
 
RAW RECAP: Yes! Yes! Yes!
 
PPV RECAP: WWE WrestleMania 28

 

 

 


All contents are Copyright 1995-2014 by OOWrestling.com.  All rights reserved.
This website is not affiliated with WWE or any other professional wrestling organization.  Privacy Statement.