The Goldmine: The Greatest WrestleMania Of All Time by Alex Gold

The Goldmine: The Greatest WrestleMania Of All Time by Alex Gold

Considering we are “all in” when it comes to WrestleMania season (and that it’s nearly thirty years since it first aired), now is a good time as any to talk about the greatest WrestleMania of all time (at least according to the only opinion that matters, namely The Goldmine): it’s time to dissect the greatness that is Wrestlemania VI.

The build-up began the day after WrestleMania V, April 2nd 1989, Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino when the WWE announced the first-ever WrestleMania to take place outside the U.S. would happen April 1st, 1990 at SkyDome in Toronto, Canada – WrestleMania VI. At that time no one in their wildest dreams could have foreseen the magnitude of what would happen.

One year later, the card presented by WWE (after weeks of promos, feuds and other build-ups) was Murderer’s Row of WWE’s top superstars: Rick ‘The Model’ Martel, Mr. Perfect, Brutus Beefcake, Jake ‘The Snake’ Roberts, ‘The Million Dollar Man’ Ted DeBiase, The Rockers, Demolition, The Ultimate Warrior, Ravishing Rick Rude and Hulk Hogan. It was the first WrestleMania to be filled with vibrant neon colors and dazzling fireworks, and it was one where many celebrities were in attendance: Steve Allen, Rona Barrett, Robert Goulet and Mary-Tyler Moore just to name a few.

Once Robert Goulet had performed the Canadian National Anthem, the festivities began and the intensity quickly filled Skydome to a fever pitch. Fans (including ‘Edge’ aka Adam Copeland who was in the crowd that night) began the countdown to the Title vs. Title “Ultimate Challenge” main event. For the first time in WWE WrestleMania history, a “good guy” would face another “good guy” as WWE World Champion, Hulk Hogan faced Intercontinental Champion, The Ultimate Warrior.

At the time, The Ultimate Warrior was one of the most charismatic, the most intense, and by far the most electrifying man in the history of wrestling – and make no mistake, his legend still looms over us to this day.

The iconic Hulk/Warrior feud Vince McMahon dubbed during WrestleMania VI opening credit sequence as, “The two most powerful forces in the Universe”, had been building since the latter half of 1989. At SummerSlam ’89, The Ultimate Warrior captured the Intercontinental title by defeating the late, great ‘Ravishing’ Rick Rude. Hulk Hogan had recaptured the WWE title from ‘Macho Man’ Randy Savage a few months prior at WrestleMania V, ending Savage’s year-long run as champion.

At the 1990 Royal Rumble in Orlando, Florida, mid-way Rumble match it came down to just Hogan and Warrior. There wasn’t a person in the arena sitting in their seat. As these two icons went eye-to-eye the crowd was able to glimpse the future – Hogan vs Warrior. From then on until WrestleMania VI Hogan and Warrior engaged in an interesting program – Hogan saves Warrior in certain matches and vice-versa. Neither man appreciative of the other’s assistance.

The Warrior vs Hogan match at WrestleMania VI was truly the icing on the cake of the event, but the undercard was equally as captivating. And for those who maintain the Warrior wasn’t a great wrestler and storyteller, you are wrong. The Hogan/Warrior match lasted almost thirty minutes and told an Academy Award Winning story filled with wrestling moves and athleticism. Warrior bests Hogan, Hogan fakes a knee injury, Hogan gets the upper-hand, Warrior comes back, Hogan comes back, Hogan drops the leg, misses, Warrior gets the splash, scores the pin and becomes the new world wrestling federation champion – and – the Intercontinental champion! Perfection.

As the legendary Gorilla Monsoon would say, “It’s a happening” and WrestleMania VI’s main event certainly was that.

The rest of the WrestleMania VI card was as followed:

Brutus ‘The Barber’ Beefcake took on Mr. Perfect aka Curt Henning, and we got to see The Genius, Macho Man’s real life brother and Perfect’s then manager receive a horrible haircut courtesy of Beefcake. ‘Ravishing’ Rick Rude caught action when he squared off against ‘Superfly’ Jimmy Snuka, in the final match before the main event. The Honky Tonk Man debuted his latest song ‘Honka Love’.

The Big Bossman faced his former tag-team partner the near 500 pounder, Akeem ‘The African Dream’. ‘The Million Dollar Man’ Ted DeBiase attempted to humiliate Jake ‘The Snake’ Roberts. Demolition captured the world tag team titles by defeating Haku and Andre the Giant, collectively, ‘The Collosal Connection’. The Hart Foundation, Bret Hart and Jim Niedhart (Natalia’s father) defeated the uptight Russians, The Bolshivieks. ‘The Model’ Rick Martel defeated Koko B. Ware in the opening bout. Hercules was defeated by Earthquake. The Barbarian bested Tito or (Chico as Jesse ‘The Body’ Ventura called him) Santana. The Orient Express defeated The Rockers, Shawn Michaels and Marty Janetty. There were also other great matches on the card that night but you’ll have to track a copy of WrestleMania VI down in order to appreciate them.

The commentary team for the evening comprised, Jesse ‘The Body’ Ventura (in his last WWE PPV broadcast) and the late Gorilla Monsoon, the greatest commentators in WWE history. How apropos they got to call all the action of the greatest WrestleMania of all time.

WrestleMania VI’s presentation and production values were nothing short of spectacular. Because the distance between the entrance and the ring was so long, WWE created carts to escort wrestlers from the entrance to the ring. Of course, Warrior and Hogan (the main event) did not use carts. In Warrior’s, Always Believe DVD, Warrior tells the tale of how he “told” Vince McMahon that “he was running to the ring,” which Vince obviously approved. We also saw Hogan walk to the ring –  not wanting Warrior to upstage him.

Bringing us the backstage interviews (which all  were genius), was the tag team of the legendary, Mean Gene Okerlund and the great Sean Mooney. These two men know exactly how to “lead” interviews and further storylines. Take note current WWE interviewers. It would benefit you greatly to study how these pioneers “lead” interviews to perfection.

If you’re a true wrestling fan I encourage you to watch WrestleMania VI from start to finish, especially considering WrestleMania 34 is on the horizon. You would be hard-pressed to find any flaw with this magnificent event that gave birth to a bright new WWE future. The Goldmine gives WrestleMania VI his golden seal of approval as the greatest WrestleMania of all time.

What other endorsement do you need?

6 years ago by Wrestle Talk


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