Ranking SummerSlam - #26: 1994 - Undertaker vs. Undertaker



(The one with the million throat chops)

Welcome everyone to my look back at every SummerSlam main event. This series is much in the same vein as BIGPALE's awesome series on every Wrestlemania main event from back in the spring. Seriously, if you haven't read that yet go check it out and come back. I'll wait for you. (Find it here:

A few ground rules before we start. This series will go in reverse order and will finish with the number one entry on August 17th, the day of the 2014 edition of SummerSlam. I'll look at only the last match of the show* and I'll attempt to explain the events leading up to each main event Even in cards where there were two main matches, only the last one counts. Each ranking is a combination of in-ring quality and both build before and after each match. When in doubt, I go with my gut. At the end of each article I'll rank each match on the five star scale and leave a clue for the next day's article.

*There are two SummerSlams that end with ten-second Money In The Bank cash-ins as the technical final match of the show. For purposes of this article, I'll look at the match before each cash-in and include the cash-in as part of the match preceding it, seeing as how the cash-ins are a direct result of the match right beforehand.

Without further ado…

God God was this match brutal.

Let's set the scene. At the 1994 Royal Rumble the Undertaker lost a casket match to Yokozuna, and it took just about every mid-card heel to stuff the Undertaker into the casket. As the heels were wheeling the casket away, 'Taker appeared on the big screen vowing vengeance.

Fast forward a bit, to after Wrestlemania X. The "Undertaker" reappeared! Well, no. Instead of Mark Calaway, the role was played by some guy named Brian Lee.

Lee was led not by Paul Bearer and urns, but by Ted Dibiase and his money. He looked like the Undertaker, wrestled like the Undertaker, moved like the Undertaker, but he clearly wasn't the Undertaker. 'Taker left a face, while this guy (called Underfaker by just about everyone, so we'll use that name here) was a dastardly heel, aiding the Million Dollar Man in his quest to be the Million Dollar Man.

Meanwhile, Paul Bearer, himself also a face, accused DiBiase and the Underfaker of being, well, fake, and said that he would debut the "real" Undertaker at SummerSlam to fight the fake Undertaker.

If this sounds absurd, it gets better. In Vince McMahon's never-ending quest to incorporate as many celebrities into his shows as humanly possible, Leslie Nielson was brought in to solve the "mystery" of the two Undertakers. To say these skits fell flat is a vast understatement. It wasn't Nielson's fault, the writing was just awful.

While the two Undertakers were doing their thing, Owen Hart was turning heel on his brother Bret. What started with a misunderstanding at the '93 Survivor Series lead to a full-fledged heel turn for the younger Hart when he literally kicked Bret while he was down at the 1994 Royal Rumble. The two Harts would feud for much of 1994, and would settle their differences in a steel cage match at SummerSlam.

I'm assuming the vast majority of people reading this have the WWE Network. Great! Open up a new tab in your browser and watch this cage match. Just a superb showing by two of the best wrestlers in the world, and the WWF Championship was on the line too! I won't spoil how the cage match ends in case you forgot (or never knew in the first place).

So, you had a title match, in a cage, between two brothers who had been at each other's throats for nine months. Seems like a great main event, right?

You obviously don't know Vince McMahon very well. His fetish for big wrestlers means that the Taker vs. Faker match, not the Bret-Owen instant classic, would close the #2 pay-per-view of the year.

To be fair, the entrances were cool. Faker came out first, led by DiBiase (and his great music). Then Paul Bearer and a bunch of guys in robes – a theme for Undertaker angles for two decades – pushed out the same casket that Taker had been buried in at the Rumble. Instead of the Undertaker, however, was a giant urn. Bearer, in full-blown Paul Bearer mode, grabbed the urn as the lights went out in the arena.

Then the urn itself started glowing as Paul Bearer started cackling and beckoned the real Undertaker to the ring. Undertaker started walking to the ring in all his majesty. He entered the ring. The real Taker was wearing purple gloves, while the imposter was wearing grey gloves.

The two stood face to face. The bell rang and the plane crashed into the mountain.

Whether it was because of his early 90s gimmick as an indestructible undead zombie, or because the man in the trench coat wasn't allowed to show he could actually wrestle, early 90s Undertaker matches were slow, boring affairs. Now, one guy in ultra-slow motion has limitations. Two guys in ultra-slow motion kills a match, and these two were moving in first gear the entire night.

The match itself was nothing but throat chops, Irish whips, kicks and Paul Bearer being great on the outside. There was such little heat, and the crowd was so dead, that Vince McMahon (who makes Matt Striker sound like Gordon Solie) had to say multiple times that the crowd was in "stunned silence" because they didn't know how to react to the two Undertakers throat-chopping each other all night.

No, Vince, the crowd was silent because this match sucked.

It was nine minutes long and felt twice that. The Undertaker tombstoned the Underfaker three times and buried him the casket. That was the end of the Underfaker. No rematch, no nothing. Just one bad match at SummerSlam and that was that. Brian Lee didn't come back for two years, when he was in a biker gang during the WWF's "everyone needs to be in a group" phase.

Curtain Jerker's Star Rating – ¼ star, and only because Paul Bearer was his usual awesome self.

Up next – tomorrow's match was also two big stiffs trying to follow a great semi-main event one match before.

The FanPosts are solely the subjective opinions of Cageside Seats readers and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cageside Seats editors or staff.