We start out tonight’s show, the greatest WWE show of the entire year, with… Fifth Harmony dressed in red curtains, singing “America The Beautiful.” On one hand, this is perhaps the most boring of all-American songs we’ve got. On the other hand, this is Texas, and I’m just glad we didn’t get a few hundred guns going off while this was being warbled nigh-incoherently. The intro video we get after this is… well… it’s good! But I’m biased, because anything slow-motion involving a shot of the Undertaker is something I’m going to give five stars to regardless. Also: Kelsey Grammar is narrating it.
Tonight, we’re reminded — over the sounds of Fort Minor’s “Remember The Name,” no less — that we’ve got Vince’s son, Vince’s son-in-law, and Vince’s chosen one to look forward to. Oh, and some other people.
Welcome to WrestleMania 32, y’all!
Kevin Owens vs. Dolph Ziggler, Sami Zayn, The Miz, Stardust, Sin Cara, and Zack Ryder – Intercontinental Title Match
The Miz has a gorgeous gold coat on, Ziggles has got some fancy new gear too, and Sami is getting a huge pop as you hear everyone singing along to his theme! Next out is Stardust dressed like his daddy, followed by Sin Cara, who has gone for white and the biggest shoulder-pads you’ve ever seen – and then Zack Ryder, in silver and purple, saying ‘I’ve waited my whole damn life for this’ – that’s so adorable and awesome.
KO out last, in a new KO shirt for KOMANIA! We also get a view of the other language commentary teams, which includes FUNAKI!
- Everyone dives out for a ladder except KO
- Gorgeous neckbreaker from Zack Ryder to Stardust, very impressive
- Miz trying to take everyone out, and is the first up a ladder, with Sami and Ziggler pushing it over
- Blue Thunder Bomb from Sami to Ziggler, OLE CHANTS
- KO interrupts to throw Sami into the ladder, but Sami counters, runs towards KO – and gets thrown into the ladder
- Rough Ryder to KO, and Zack climbs to boos, Ziggler climbing the other side and Stardust tilting the ladder
- Sin Cara tilts the ladder for Stardust
- Sami Zayn crawls into the ring to more ole chants to straighten the ladder
- Miz grabs the bottom to get in the way, Sami kicks him away
- Sami somersaults through the ladder, over the top rope and into everyone expect KO
- Sami comes around the ring for a DDT to Owens as he pulls the ladder into place and climbs
- Sin Cara grabs Sami and gets him down, before climbing himself
- Sami tilts Sin Cara, who manages to springboard off the top rope into everyone else for a HOLY SHIT chance as the refs check everyone’s okay
- Superkicks from Ziggler to Sami, leaving him the only man in the ring, but Stardust comes in with a disaster kicks, before Ziggler takes him down, then Sin Cara, then dodges a Rough Ryder
- Ziggler climbs, KO pushes the ladder and both take a superkick to stagger them
- Stardust finds his own personal Dusty covered ladder, bless him, what a cutie! Dusty chants as Stardust has the ladder above his head and takes down everyone but Miz, who hits Skullcrushing Finale onto the Dusty ladder
- KO hits a KO on the Dusty ladder to Miz, and flings the ladder out, to boos from the crowd
- Sami launches himself at KO, leaving him in the corner, running in for a Helluva Kick, but KO gets the boot up first
- KO frogsplash from the top rope onto Sami’s who’s balanced on the ladder!
- KO setting up a ladder, but clearly not himself, Miz runs in and gets a pop up powerbomb for his troubles
- Zack Ryder climbs the ladder, throws a huge elbow drop onto Miz from the top if the ladder
- Ryder climbs the ladder and reaches for the title, Ziggler coming in to headbutt him out of the way
- Ziggler and Ryder come off the top of the ladder HARD, Ziggler’s knee out as he climbs up again
- Owens grabs the bad leg, pop-up Powerbomb!
- Queen’s Crossbow from Stardust to Owens, then a kick from Sin Cara to Stardust
- Sin Cara climbs the ladder, Zayn in to pull him away, but knocked away, Owens sending Sin Cara through a ladder and Stardust, breaking the ladder
- Owens climbs the ladder alone in the ring, but Sami’s right there, the two trading blows at the top of the ladder
- Sami gets his hand on the title, and KO pokes the eye, taking him down to the floor
- Zayn from the floor, throws Owens over his shoulder into the ladder, looks… pretty rough spot
- Sami seems torn between his friend and the title, but climbs anyway, ole chants high
- Miz tips Sami off the ladder, and climbs it himself, all the boos of the crowd, and he showboats, holding the title
- Zack Ryder climbs up and pushes him off
ZACK RYDER WINS! The ‘woo woo woo’ chants from the audience, and his dad’s in the ring hugging him and crying – Zack is absolutely stoked and this is so lovely. His first WrestleMania, and so special, the first time his music has ever been played at WrestleMania, after a decade long career, and this is just… beautiful.
A stunning match, and a well-deserved win, too. Good on you, Zack.
Before the next match, we get a lovely shot of the arena, probably with people still on the outside trying to get in. Note to any future WrestleMania arenas: make sure your ticket machines work. Just a thought!
Chris Jericho vs. AJ Styles – Grudge Match
We get the same promo we had earlier on the kick-off show, and then out comes Chris, in a new jacket, with rainbow colours just to really annoy homophobe AJ. He’s also still in purple trunks. Put some pants on, boy.
AJ has given up on his blue and black tonight for white, black and red, in a weird style that looks like chaps at the front and football pants at the back? I’m not loving it, honestly.
- Starts off with Jericho throwing himself in, and the two of them grapple with hands on faces and necks
- Duelling ‘AJ Styles’ and ‘Y2J’ chants – AJ seems to be winning it so far, as Jericho gets booed
- Lovely little headscissors from AJ to Jericho, who ends up outside the ring and throws things around with a temper tantrum
- Jericho runs around the ring with AJ after him like the Benny Hill show
- Some deep arm drags, Styles putting a special swing onto it
- The two trade chops and blows for a moment
- This match is very, very fast, both men really showing what they can do
- Styles launches himself outside the ring straight into the boot of Jericho
- Neckbreaker on the second rope to AJ Styles
- Looks like AJ’s caught his elbow on the mat and grazed in a little
- Delayed suplex from Jericho to AJ and a cover for two
- Styles and Jericho grapple in the centre of the ring
- Faster-paced movement from Styles and a running forearm into Jericho’s jaw, followed by a kick to Jericho’s face
- Jericho gets the Walls of Jericho locked in after countering a roll up
- Styles does a moonsault off the second rope into a neckbreaker to Jericho
- Styles moves and leaves Jericho hung up over the second turnbuckle, right in the plums
- Up to the top rope, very slowly, with Jericho calling Styles an idiot
- Both men come off hard into the centre of the ring, Styles landing face first, Jericho landing hard on his stomach and struggling to his feet
- Jericho goes for a roll up, Styles rolls through
- Pele Kick from Styles but Jericho catches him pushes him into the Walls of Jericho again, with a good shot of the bleeding graze on the elbow
- Styles reverse Walls of Jericho, and the two trade punches before Styles manages to lock in the Calf Crusher
- Jericho rolls into a pin, breaking the hold, but AJ kicks out at two
- Styles going for the Styles Clash, Jericho fights out, gets him on the back and throws him over the top rope
- Codebreaker from Jericho, but it’s a slow cover from a dazed Jericho, so it’s a kick out at two
- Jericho goes to attempt the Styles Clash, but Styles fights out, folds Jericho, but the pin isn’t quite solid enough
- Jack-knife cover from Styles as the two trade pins, and then a Styles Clash from AJ, Jericho kicking out barely at two
- THIS IS AWESOME chants
- Lovely lionsault from Jericho but it misses
- AJ comes off the top rope, a full tucked somersault before he lands, covering Jericho, but once more only for two
- Jericho lies in the centre of the ring, and AJ calls for the crowd to get up
AJ Styles leaps from the top rope, and Jericho manages to hit the Codebreaker, and pin Styles for the win on the biggest stage of them all! Jericho looks genuinely shocked and ruined, facially, as he’s helped out of the ring by a referee, his mouth bleeding and his breath heavy and staggered. And we get a short commercial break so we can catch our breaths!
We get nice shots of Stephen Amell and Bill Simmons, before Maria Menounos interviews the happiest Zack Ryder we have EVER seen! All he wanted was to hear his music being played at WrestleMania, y’all, and now he’s got the goddamn Intercontinental Championship.
The New Day vs The League of Nations
“Awwww WrestleMania!” Here come The New Day! Except instead there’s a 20 foot box of BOOTY-O’S… which… tilts, falls, and opens, spilling cereal all over the ramp and… and…
The New Day came out of the box, and they’re dressed like Saiyans. The New Day are Saiyans, y’all! And I’m pretty damn sure Xavier is related to Vegeta. I’ve had dreams about this. Possibly erotic dreams.
Next out is the League of Nations, and I”m not sure they can do a better entrance than– oh. They all have little trunks now! And Rusev looks incredibly good, jeez. Sheamus doesn’t look bad in red, and I will go on record saying that despite everyone’s concerns about redheads wearing red. Sheamus can pull it off (mostly because he’s supposed to look pasty). The bell, rings, and…!
- Sheamus vs Kofi, with Kofi taking control for long enough for a Unicorn Stampede!
- Still can’t get over Xavier’s hair, y’all.
- Xavier vs Rusev: ow ow kicks ow
- New Day chants all over the place
- Xavier with actual retaliation for ONCE
- Del Rio with tiltawhirl backbreaker on Xavier, oh jeez
- Big E trying to wreak vengence, but ref ain’t havin that, yo.
- Del Rio murdering Xavier with running enzuigiri noooooo!
- Tag on Sheamus (Rusev: “GET YO ASS UP”)
- Now Rusev pounds on Xavier (heh), Kofi yelling from a distance ‘I WISH YOU WOULD’ and I’m writing fanfic in my head again, thanks
- Okay I feel like Xavier is the main roster version of NXT’s Enzo considering his ability to look like he’s dying while still managing to pull off some crazy-ass moves
- Kofi tagged! Kofi going in hard and fast, taking down sheamus AND rusev
- Trouble In Paradise reversed into Cloverleaf? Sheamus lifting Kofi, who’s still punching on him…
- Rusev kicking Kofi from the outside, like a true heel
- TWO count, har har, sucks to be you, League
- Sheamus v Kofi: Kofi keeps kicking the ever-charging Sheamus
- Big E gets a big tag
- BIG E TAKES OUT THREE LEAGUERS diving out the ropes
- Kofi now legal tag! And gets murdered by Del Rio outside the ring with dat double heel stomp, OW
- IS XAVIER LITERALLY THE ONLY ONE LEFT??? OH GOD HE IS
- Xavier with FAILED ROLLUP even with the trunks grab
- Surprise Bullhammer! SUDDEN BROGUE KICK! SHEAMUS WITH THE PIN FOR THE WIN!
- LEAGUE WINS! … 😦
The League celebrates the only way they know how: by linking arms and yelling at people about how dominant they are. Barrett grabs a mic, and the crowd immediately boos. Barrett names them all, rolls his R’s perfectly for Del Rio, and calls them all a unit. A unit that no three people can beat.
Cue… Shawn Michaels. In ring gear. (!)
And Mick Foley. Also in ring gear. (!!)
And… Stone Cold. In. Ring. Gear. …Ish. (!!!)
The three of them stand there for a moment, drinking in the cheers, and then they make their way to the ring, Mick very clearly limping — but Shawn very clearly being in shape. Very clearly. Hot damn.
There’s a stand-off in the ring between Team Legends and the League, and… ATTACK!
Shawn’s on Del Rio, Foley brings out MISTER SOCKO for Sheamus for a Mandible Claw! Stone Cold’s on Rusev, Sweet Chin Music on Del Rio, Stunner on Rusev! New Day shoves Barrett into the ring! Sweet Chin Music! Mandible Claw! STUNNER!
Stone Cold hauls Barrett clear outta the ring, and the New Day enter. Their music starts up, and they start boogying. The three legends look at little confused and the New Day look wary but friendly! Oh god, Shawn’s bootyshaking. Mick’s turn! He’s… hip wiggling. C’mon, Stone Cold, you know you wanna join in, right? Right…? He’s just staring at Xavier and… oh god. Oh god STUNNER! Let this be a lesson to all: no one makes Stone Cold dance. Not even Xavier freaking Woods.
The ‘cold ones’ come out, and the legends share a drink in the ring. The crowd cheers are deafening. I figured Stone Cold would make an appearance this year, but I didn’t expect the other two. I’m pleased with Shawn in particular, who likes kicking around heels despite his BFF being more or less the top heel currently on the active roster. “Nobody’s perfect,” he’d likely say with a wink. One of these days I’ll cave and write Shawn Michaels fanfic.
Dean Ambrose vs Brock Lesnar
The beast incarnate has entered the arena, followed by the holder of his leash, a grinning Paul Heyman. As they both strut down the ring with complete and utter confidence, I say a few hundred prayers for Dean Ambrose, because he sure as fuck is gonna need ‘em. Also, he’ll probably need that chainsaw, so I hope he remembered to bring it. Lesnar gets all of his appropriate pyro, and… Heyman interrupts Eden to shoo her out of the ring. Heyman’s got this, madam. “Ladies and gentlemen…” Lesnar is from the University of Violence, according to Heyman, and the crowd whoops and hollers, because violence is exactly what they want to see in this match.
Dean Ambrose finally makes his entrance, with his usual jeans and a jacket, wearing a shirt that has the Suplex City sign but with the DA logo spraypainted on. I’m hoping that’s a sign of how the match will go.
Bell rings, and…
- Lesnar immediately on the attack, suplex #1!
- #2, and Dean’s on the ground but grinning
- #3, and Lesnar’s bouncing on his heels while Dean rolls outta the ring
- Lesnar goes looking for him, but Dean’s got a kendo stick, thwackthwackthwack!
- Lesnar with knees for days and… #4! #5!
- Lesnar throws the stick away while Dean goes searching for another weapon
- Lesnar gets to him before he can grab anything useful
- Lesnar now has two kendo sticks and Dean’s in the center of the ring on his knees
- Lesnar breaks the sticks because he don’t need no stinkin sticks — #6!
- Dean giving a thumbs up to the ref because WHY NOT.
- Lesnar’s pretty much doing strong style against Dean — #7!
- Kendo stick? NOPE, Lesnar steps on it and possibly also Dean’s fingers
- JBL cackling while Byron calls that disturbing
- Dean stumbles up and… slaps him LOL
- Dean with an attempted comeback but… #9!
- Brock going fishing with Dean by using a kendo stick
- DEAN WITH THE LOW BLOW “THAT’S HILARIOUSSSS!”
- Lesnar rolls outta the ring and Dean follows by DIVING OUT
- Dean digs under the ring and… oh. Oh shit. The chainsaw. Vroom?
- #10! Chainsaw goes flying, of course.
- Dean with a… piece of… something, at Lesnar’s head
- And also a steel chair!
- SUPER SUPLEX #11 OFF THE TOP ROPE
- “You sunova bitch.” – Lesnar
- DEAN WITH THE FIRE EXTINGUISHER IN LESNAR’S FACE, ACTUALLY SETTING IT OFF
- Lesnar can’t see! Dean comes at him with a chair! Running double foot thing with the steel chair!
- Dean on the top rope with the steel chair… oh god Dean… across the face on Lesnar! TWO COUNT.
- Dean’s elbow is scraped but he does not give a shit, because he’s now bringing out ALL THE STEEL CHAIRS apparently. ALL OF THEM. EVERY SINGLE CHAIR.
- #12! But Dean misses the chairs thankfully!
- DEAN COUNTERS AN F5 INTO A DDT ON THE CHAIRS! TWO COUNT
- Dean just flat out removes his shirt, because WHY NOT.
- OH SHIT IT’S BARBIE. DEAN HAS BARBIE OUT. AND IS KISSING IT. OH GOOD LORD. “BATTER UP, BITCH!”
- #13 onto the chairs! Barbie goes flying!
- F5 onto the steel steps!
- Pin for… the win? Lesnar wins???? Uhh.
So that was… certainly… something that happened. Lesnar and Heyman exit, and Dean is left lying on the heap of steel chairs. He crawls to a sitting position against the ropes, catching his breath, and Lesnar tosses the fire extinguisher into the ring before walking out. This felt short. Short and… hm. Unsatisfying? We got a few kendo sticks and some steel chairs, but to have the chainsaw and Barbie right there, but then to not use them? Ignoring all of Chekov’s Guns is just… weird. I mean, it’s also weird for this storyline to end with ‘and thus, did Dean not prove his status as the iron man of the company. Also, Brock is still a beast, just in case you forgot.’
There’s a commercial for Snickers that implies that Charlotte turns into Zack Ryder when confused, and this amuses me so fucking much. What amuses me more: Dolph Ziggler can ‘woooo!’ better than all three of them.
Charlotte vs. Becky Lynch vs. Sasha Banks – WWE Women’s Championship Match
Triple threat time! So, this is for the newly minted WWE Women’s Championship, and boy it’s a pretty thing, isn’t it? Becky comes out first, all steampunk wonder in purple and gold, and then it’s cousin Snoopy to the rescue for Sasha Banks – shame the girl singing is flat as all hell. Out comes our Sasha in red and gold for Eddie Guerrero and her signature coat. Lasty, our last ever diva’s champion, which is great because I can stop capitalising it, Charlotte, dressed like something from a pageant, in the style of her ancient father Ric Flair – the robe is made from his jacket from his retirement match – is that a good omen? She’s in Flair blue tonight, of course, and that horrible tacky pink butterfly belt. I hope they don’t just retire it, I hope they burn it. If they retire it, they might find it again.
- Interesting to note that if you believe in these sorts of things, Charlotte’s wearing silver, when the other two women are wearing gold
- ‘Genetically superior’ from JBL – take a shot. To the head.
- Sasha and Becky take Charlotte down fast, then turn on each other Becky getting a fast pin on Sasha
- Jack-Knife cover from Sasha to Becky, Charlotte breaking in, and… are we going to just do pinfalls forever
- Becky rolls out of the ring after a pin, leaving Sasha and Charlotte in the ring, with a lovely rana from Sasha to take Charlotte down
- Ric standing at ringside…. I’m so over this bullshit, honestly. Make him go away
- Sunset misses from Sasha, Becky hits with a German suplex, then catches Sasha with an armdrag and submission hold.
- Charlotte drags Sasha out of the ring by her feet and springs her into the ropes
- Becky leaps onto Charlotte and spares a look for Ric. I swear, Flair, you touch her and they won’t find your body
- Arm DDT from Becky to Charlotte in the ring, but Charlotte kicks out at two
- Charlotte dragging Becky off the top rope and pinning her, but Becky’s quick to kick out
- Charlotte looking for Figure Four, Becky gets out of it as Sasha gets back in the ring
- Becky catches Sasha’s feet on her shoulders and throws Sasha out of the ring, going for Charlotte and looks for the disarmer
- Charlotte in the Disarmer, Ric climbing onto the apron, ref stopping it as Charlotte cried ‘Dad’ because we really needed to make her seem more like daddy’s girl
- Sasha thrown back out easily, Charlotte hits Figure Four, can’t get into Figure Eight due to arm pain
- Frogsplash from Sasha from the top rope to Charlotte, pin for two
- LET’S GO SASHA
- German suplex from Becky to Charlotte as Sasha’s sent out of the ring again
- Becky gets the cover but Sasha breaks the pin
- Sasha and Becky locking up, Charlotte taking a breath, Becky rolling up Sasha for two
- Double knees to the chest from Sasha to Becky, and Becky rolls, looking exhausted
- Gorgeous spot with Sasha launching out of the ring into Charlotte almost in a pin roll up position
- Sasha and Papa Flair have a WOO off
- BECKY TAKES OUT RIC FLAIR YES THIS IS WHAT HE FUCKING DESERVES HOW DARE YOU KISS BECKY WITHOUT HER PERMISSION I HOPE THAT ACTUALLY HURT
- Sasha and Becky in a crumpled heap on the floor outside the ring
- Charlotte hits a beautiful moonsault from the top rope onto both Becky and Sasha
- THIS IS AWESOME chant
- Double Natural Selection from Charlotte, pins Becky, kick out at two, pins Sasha, kick out a two
- Again, same pin repeats, both kicked out at two
- Charlotte throws Becky in the ring post and the male commentary team disrespect the women in the ring by wondering if Ric is okay
- Electric Chair with Sasha and Charlotte, Becky flying in to break it up
- Becky pins Charlotte for two and a half, almost holding my breath before that pin broke
- Disarmer from Becky to Charlotte, Sasha breaks it
- Two rounds of Banks Statement to Becky from Sasha
- Figure Four from Charlotte to Sasha, finally getting the Figure Eight, Becky pulling Sasha free to save the match
- All three women exhausted, Flair chops from Charlotte to Becky and Sasha, before they both retaliate, beating down Charlotte
- Spear from Charlotte to Sasha, taking her out of the ring, Becky taking Charlotte to the corner
- Sasha comes in, joining Becky at Charlotte first, then pushing Becky away
- Bexploder from Becky from the top rope, with Sasha hung up on the top rope
- “I love you baby” from Charlotte to Sasha, overheard
- Sasha gets free and goes for Charlotte, to be pushed away
In the end, Charlotte gets Figure Eight on Becky Lynch, and Becky has to tap out, Charlotte becoming our first ever WWE Women’s Champion. We get another camera angle showing Ric Flair pulling Sasha away from breaking the submission hold, so… heels be heels, I guess.
I can’t say I’m exactly overjoyed with the result, I really wanted to see the title on Sasha or Becky, but the story carried through and that was a beautifully long match, which is… incredible. People were more into that than the Ambrose/Lesnar fight, and that’s amazing, so in the end, if it brings Bayley up, and we get the Four Horsewomen competing for a title that actually deserves them? That is going to be awesome.
Shane McMahon vs The Undertaker
The cell comes down onto the ring, and… here comes the moneyyyy! Shane snuffles his way around happily, the crowd going wild as money with Shane’s face on it flutters down from the rafters. His kids then comes out, doing their own little mini-shuffling, and oh my god this is the most adorable thing. These are the future corporate villains of the WWE, y’all! The Dolla Dolla and his three cents trot to the ring, and Shane hands his kids over to his wife and mom over the barricade. Shane enters the ring like it may be the last time he walks anywhere, and as he paces back and forth… the lights go dark.
The Deadman has arrived.
Fire and smoke cover the arena, and the lights go out. Blue lights and lightning flicker everywhere… and then he comes out. Long coat, big hat, black circles around his eyes. He walks so slowly I feel like I could take a bathroom break without missing anything, but this is my favorite superstar of ALL TIME, so I’m going to watch every millisecond of this. For half a second, I wonder if the druids only show up during non-cell matches because they’re afraid he’ll toss them into the cell.
Shane watches closely, kind of in awe and maybe a little bit afraid. He’s smart enough to be afraid, anyway. But I don’t think he’s just afraid for himself — the future of the company is at stake, here.
The door closes. The bell rings.
- Shuffle shuffle shuffle. (shuffle shane shuffle?)
- Commentary says Shane has muy thai and jiu jitsu training, but the Undertaker is an undead lightning wizard sooooo…
- Taker going in for offense now, and– OOF. OW. JEEZ. FUCK. To Shane in the corner.
- Shane thrown outside the ring, Taker just ambling on after him, doot doot…
- Shane keeps attempting to punchpunchpunch and then Taker’s just like POW with one hit and Shane’ll go down to one knee.
- Shane with a sudden flying elbow! But Shane looks worse off, because of course he does.
- Oh good lord Taker looks like he’s gonna pummel Shane so hard Shane’s gonna turn into mush. RIP in peace, Shane-O-Mac.
- Taker with the steel steps, meanwhile Shane’s like ‘oh shit’ and gets back into the ring, beckoning Taker…
- Shane stomping on Taker’s neck but Taker drags him out anyway, slamming him to the ground, oww…
- Running leg drop on Shane on the apron, JESUS OW.
- In the middle of the ring now, attempted Last Ride, and… done! But a two count pin!
- Taker’s a little bit surprised. “Typical,” he’s probably thinking to himself. McMahons never stay down.
- Taker grabs the steel stairs and slides them into the ring…
- Shane’s on the floor but he’s — he’s got Taker in a triangle submission! Taker’s a LITTLE BIT ANNOYED ABOUT THIS.
- Taker foaming from the mouth now, and… Taker pushes Shane’s shoulders down, causing a break in the submission, womp womp!
- Shane gets Taker to the steps but Taker… CHOKESLAMS SHANE ON THE STEPS!
- Cover! TWO count!
- Taker’s looking like, “REALLY? Goddamn McMahons.”
- Taker goes for the elbow but Shane rolls away and Taker goes RIGHT onto those steel steps with a CLANG. Ow.
- Shane pulling himself up to a chorus of clapping and cheering… Taker’s also getting back on his feet…
- Shane just beckons him again for more, and Taker runs at him but gets a DDT into the steps instead! PIN AND A TWO COUNT for Shane.
- Taker’s looking like he’s starting to regret this fight, and then ANOTHER elbow from Shane. Followed but a PIN FOR A TWO COUNT. Taker gets out with the sit-up and then punches and–
- HELL’S GATE! Shane’s fighting! And fading!
- Shane’s fighting! STILL! Waving the ref away… fading… SLIPS OUT! Reverses it and…
- SHANE WITH A SHARPSHOOTER ON THE GODDAMN UNDERTAKER!
- Taker eventually powers the hell (ha ha) out of it, to Shane’s frustration.
- Dueling chants of “UNDERTAKER” “SHANE O MAC!”
- Shane pummels Taker in a corner… in a corner? Is this a setup for what I think…?
- HERE COMES THE TRASH CAN.
- Shane kicks Taker a few times just to keep him down… shoves the can at him like “you BEST hold this, buddy.”
- Shane climbs to the top rope on the opposite end… and…
- COAST TO COAST HITS! Taker’s damn near out like a light, eyes dazed…
- Cover and a KICKOUT AT TWO!
- Shane looks up, then moves the stairs and climbs out of the ring…
- Shane grabs a goddamn BOLT CUTTER from under the ring and starts to cut the bolts from the cell…
- Taker’s on him now, and they trade blows, but both of them look a little punch drunk now
- TAKER DRIVES SHANE THROUGH THE LOOSE CELL WALL AND ONTO THE GERMAN ANNOUNCE TABLE!
- Spanish announce table clears the fuck out because they know better… Taker clears said table, tossing a monitor at Shane for some payback from the LAST time they were at a table.
- Shane against the barricade… Shane in the audience, Taker following…
- Taker takes off his shirt, gets on top of the… table? Barricade thing? Oh god the throat signal!
- Picks Shane up for a Tombstone but SHANE REVERSES INTO A SLEEPER OH SHIT SON
- SLEEPER HOLDS ARE APPARENTLY TAKER’S ONE WEAKNESS
- TAKER BREAKS THE SLEEPER BY DROPPING HIMSELF INTO A TABLE WITH SHANE STILL HOLDING ON
- The RETURN OF THE TOOLBOX. TOOLBOX AT TAKER’S FACE! Possible blood?
- Both on their feet, but then… ANOTHER TOOLBOX SHOT TO TAKER! TOOLS GO FLYING
- Shane’s… oh god no don’t you dare Shane DON’T YOU DARE
- HE’S GONNA DO IT. HE’S GONNA CLIMB THE CELL. HE’S GONNA CLIMB THE FUCKIN CELL. THERE HE GOES.
- OH MY GOD NO DON’T KEEP CLIMBING
- JESUS FUCKING
- HE’S ON THE TOP OF IT WHAT THE HELL
- The current chant: “PLEASE DON’T DIE!”
- OH my god he’s going to do it.
- He’s gonna fuckin do it.
- Sign of the cross and…
- HE DID IT HE ACTUALLY DID IT
- JBL: “FOR THE LOVE OF MANKIND”
- Jesus Christ even Taker looks worried. He got outta the way at the last second, of course.
- Shane finally opens his eyes after a good minute, and Taker slowly hauls himself up as well.
- Shane looks up at Taker, standing over him… grabs his pants to pull himself up to his knees… and beckons him for more. DUDE.
- Taker hauls Shane onto his shoulder, carrying him back into the ring. Jesus, they’re both looking like dead men walking. “SHANE… O MAC!” chant.
- Taker beckons Shane this time around. But Shane does it back, despite being on his knees…
- Tombstone on Shane! Pin for the win? …Taker wins.
Max Landis is seen in the crowd, throwing his hands up as if to say, “Really? THAT’S how we end this story? What the hell?” And I have to say I agree, because as good as the match was… why did it have to end like this? Because nothing changed. At all. Vince still runs Raw, Shane’s dead to the WWE Universe, Taker’s still shuffling around in the darkness, and life goes on. I guess that’s the lesson we’re supposed to learn here, but if it is, I’m pretty sure we’ve learned this lesson about a million times over the years.
The Deadman shuffles back up the ramp, and a medical buggie beep-beeps its way down to see about Shane McMahon. As he’s secured and carted off by medical staff, Shane gives a thumbs-up, and the crowd cheers, though it’s subdued.
There was literally no point to this match. Nothing in the story changed. Why. Why.
Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal
So people start filing in for the Battle Royal, and if you squint you can see pretty much every midcarder that didn’t get a match tonight. Also, some entirely random-ass folks
…What the hell? DDP is here! NOW I’m here for this, if only to see how many people he can toss out before he gets his inevitable toss by one of the giants. Also: why is Baron Corbin here? Nobody cares about you, buddy, go back to Ring of Honor! (Har har har.)
Wh… what? Shaq? SHAQ? Why tho.
So uh… the bell rings, I guess…
- Shaq and Show and Kane double chokeslam attempt, but they reverse and chokeslam Kane instead. “BOOM SHAKA LAKA!” Christ.
- Fandango boogies! And gets tossed.
- SANDOW SIGHTING! Gets tossed. Goddammit.
- Shaq vs Show, constant stare-down. JUST KISS ALREADY.
- CHOKESLAM BATTLE? And then everyone attempts to TOSS THEM BOTH!
- Shaq and Show eliminated! GOOD!
- WHY IS TATANKA HERE THO
- DDP eliminates a member of the Ascension because why not!
- …BUT WHY IS TATANKA HERE
- Rose vs Tatanka WHY THO
- Why’d Swagger get thrown so early– and Tatanka’s out WHY WAS HE EVEN THERE
- ALL FOUR OUTCASTS ARE STILL IN. I AM ROOTING FOR ALL OF THEM.
- R-Truth with some offense against Axel! And gets thrown out. Womp womp.
- Goldust eliminated! OUTCASTS STILL STANDING! VICTORY LAP IN THE RING!
- Kane stands up. Uh oh. Runs the other way and– Baron Corbin. Uh oh part two.
- Axel eliminated! Rose eliminated!
- Chokeslam from Kane to Corbin GOOD.
- Heath caught by Mark Henry aaaaaaaand eliminated.
- Tyler Breeze eliminated by Mark Henry…
- Kane vs Mark Henry… Kane and Darren Young eliminate Mark Henry!
- Darren and Bo both eliminated by Kane!
- CORBIN ELIMINATES KANE????!!!!?!?!??!!1/1/1
And lo, the sloppy Baron Corbin wins the Battle Royal, to the cheers of… no one in particular, because a) he’s a heel down in NXT, and b) before that he was a guy nobody liked who had attitude for miles and a sloppy moveset. But hey, a Big Guy from the main roster didn’t win, so uh… I count it as a victory. For a given definition of the word. Ahem.
The Rock’s Obligatory Yearly WrestleMania Segment
So after the Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders do their thing for a while, The Rock comes out, then pauses and retrieves a… fire canon? For reasons. I guess. The Rock has a flamethrower and it’s still somehow not enough to get me excited right now. …Oh. He lit his name on fire. Okay. Cool, I guess? Anyway, the Rock strides down to the ring while being heralded in by the cheerleaders, because why the hell not.
After a “ROCKY” chant, Rocky himself does his best to drum up crowd excitement and sell us a product, and that product is… maybe this WrestleMania. And maybe the last match. Who knows? …Oh. He just wanted to let everyone know that they broke attendance records. We’re now at just over a hundred thousand. Is that even the limit of this arena?
He’s about to say something else, when–
The Wyatts come shuffling into the arena, fireflies covering the crowd. Bray and his boys, minus Harper, lurch into the ring, while Bray introduces himself. He’s dressed in his Sunday best, y’all, including his apron which is probably made up of human skin. Bray says he has chosen The Rock, like a pokemon, because something something he’s a lie, something something not the people’s champion. It’s not The Rock’s moment, Bray says, and I’m inclined to agree. He also says it’s not the crowd’s moment, and they entirely disagree. It’s Bray’s moment, see! Somehow. Despite not being in any matches tonight.
Rocky’s response is basically, ‘what the hell, guys,’ followed by making fun of Bray’s accent and Erick’s possibly-related parents and Strowman being breastfed ‘since he was 27’. Oh boy, gotta love The Rock and all his ridiculously juvenile put downs. Weirdly, he goes on to compliment Bray on his ability and his charisma, but then says the ‘eater of worlds’ is actually the ‘eater of hot pockets’. Brays says he wants to kick down a door, not just knock. For a split second, I want to believe Bray can go over The Rock. So badly. But no, instead The Rock takes off his shirt and demands either Bray or ‘these two inbred duck dynasty bitches’ fight him in an actual legit match.
What. Why tho.
Bray does some thinking, some whispering, and then… he sends in Erick Rowan.
Bell rings, and… Erick is pinned in six seconds. Well, The Rock said he wanted to set records.
Strowman enters now, along with Erick and Bray, and…
DOO DOO-DOO DOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!
It’s now Cena and Rocky versus The Wyatts. Not an official match, but a brawl, and here we go! Rock Bottom to Strowman! Erick going for a ride and… YOU CAN’T SEE ME! Five Knuckle Shuffle on Erick! And an Attitude Adjustment on Erick! Attempted Sister Abigail on Cena but Rocky puts Bray down instead! And here we go… THE MOST ELECTRIFYING MOVE IN ENTERTAINMENT… THE PEOPLE’S ELBOW on Bray!
We end this segment with the Wyatts once again getting beaten down by people who didn’t need a win, LOLCENAWINS, and juvenile Rocky being a dick for a good twenty minutes. Hooray for WrestleMania!
I need a drink, and I don’t even drink.
Triple H vs. Roman Reigns – WWE World Heavyweight Championship Match
Stephanie McMahon is the Mad Queen and no amount of explaining this sight is going to do this any justice. After a video implying that her subjects are all voiceless blind slaves, she stands on the throne above the entrance, dressed in leather and spikes, with Trips’ skull crown on, and then proceeds to cut the most diabolical heel promo about the authority that I’ve ever heard. She ushers in THE GAME, Triple H, who strides in along with Steph and trailed by a gaggle of skull-faced drones all holding shadows of the WHC title.
This shit just got real, y’all.
After pecking her husband on the lips real quick and nice-like, it’s Roman’s turn to come out.
To a giant chorus of boos.
Lots of nice pyro, at least. My brother comments that the crowd sounds like it’s been muted a little bit, and I can believe him, because at some point they get unmuted and the boos roar in once again as if they were cut off. Roman strikes a pose, and I notice he’s wearing black and gold, very similar to a certain Crossfit Jesus. Who I miss. A lot. Sigh.
Sidenote: Christ, Steph looks insane. No, seriously, check out that look in her eyes! I will never, ever believe her calling anyone else crazy ever again. Pot, kettle, etc.
The bell rings…
- Trips on the ground and gets booed to hell.
- “ROMAN SUCKS” chants, jesus. My brother moans about how painful this is to watch. So far, I agree. This is cringeworthy.
- The Roman Smirk is out, and he’s mocking Trips now.
- Lockup after a smack or two, and more boos…
- Every hit given by Trips is getting wild cheers. Every hit given by Roman? Boos.
- Trips with a low blow thanks to Steph distracting the ref! And the crowd cheers.
- Trips bleeding right above his right eye for some reason…
- Another “ROMAN SUCKS!” Chant, while Steph looks on, smug af.
- Trips takes Roman to the announce table again, slamming his head against it over and over…
- Reigns fights back and reverses, throwing Trips over the table.
- Hi, Max Landis behind the announce table! o/
- Swinging neckbreaker from Trips to Roman!
- The boos with every headbutt Roman gives to Trips, jesus.
- Sign: “SPANISH ANNOUNCE TABLE REPAIRMAN”
- After a bunch more things happen that basically consist of ‘Yay Trips, Boo Roman’ there’s a Samoan Drop from Roman to Trips, which goes about as well as you’d expect.
- Trips rolls out from an attempted Superman Punch…
- Roman with a running forearm! We found the five Roman fans in the crowd!
- NXT chants? …Because Trips. Of course.
- It’s actually slightly more fun to watch Max’s reactions, not gonna lie.
- Roman spears Trips through the barricade! It Legit breaks and they fall into the audience.
- Sign: “BOOOOO ROMAN REIGNS.” Welp.
- I swear I’m hearing a “BORING” chant.
- Steph’e being all “forfeit the match he’s totally hurt you guys!” And Roman just cocks his fist and… GETS IT CAUGHT BY TRIPS.
- TRIPS WITH THE BAD ARM IN A SUBMISSION.
- Steph: “C’mon, you know you want to!” Roman growling in reply.
- “QUIT” chant. Jesus.
- Roman gets out of it but Trips still has his arm and Roman’s screaming…
- Roman picks him up WITH HIS BAD ARM and slams him onto the mat for a… two count.
- Steph is on the sidelines basically demanding a blood sacrifice. “Break his arm off! You know he deserves it!”
- Another slam with one arm by Roman, and now both are on the mat half out of it.
- Roman’s “OOWAH” is just met with “BOOOOO.” Triple H attempts a Pedigree but Roman tosses him over the ropes instead…
- “NA KA MU RA!” chants, OLE chants, and… Roman pins Trips but Steph LITERALLY PULLS THE REF OUT OF THE RING.
- They’re all in the ring, and Trips uses the ref to pull himself up, then immediately moves aside, but so does the ref, and–
- STEPH EATS ROMAN’S SPEAR oh god that sounded so bad
- VENGEANCE PEDIGREE TO ROMAN for a two count.
- SUPERMAN PUNCH ON TRIPS.
- RUNNING KNEE ON ROMAN. Two count!
- Steph pulls out the sledgehammer… gives it to Trips…
- TWO Superman Punches to Trips despite him having the sledgehammer…
- PIN FOR THE WIN. Roman wins!
Roman raises the title, and I’m distantly aware of the fact that commentary seem to be a hell of a lot louder, possibly to make sure the boos get muted more. There’s pyro everywhere, including outside of the arena, and the camera can’t decide whether it wants to focus on the outside pyro or Roman celebrating on the inside. He doesn’t exactly look happy about it — at least not nearly as happy as Seth Rollins did last year — but I guess it’s less happiness and more ‘it’s about damn time’ for him, considering how many times that title has slipped through his fingers.
And that’s how we end WrestleMania 32, y’all. Roman is the champ, the evil Authority have been defeated, and… we’ll see what fallout happens on tomorrow night’s Raw, I guess. I feel cheated, somehow, though. The villains were fleshed out and thoroughly mad with power, and then… well… Roman was there. It didn’t feel… victorious, y’know? I don’t know.
Maybe I’m just overthinking this. We’ve got a new Intercontinental Champion, at least? And a new… um. Hrm. No, I think that’s it. Oh, but AJ Styles w– no wait, he lost. Okay, but the New Day– got beat, too. And then Xavier got a Stone Cold Stunner. But Dean Amb– no. And Charlotte’s still the champion, only carrying a different title now. And the Undertaker won, so Shane doesn’t get control of Raw. And Baron Corbin won, but as far as I know nobody really cares about him. And Cena and Rocky beat the shit out of the Wyatts, who can never seem to get a decent win on anyone anyway.
Well, the Raw After ‘Mania is supposed to be amazing, right?