During a recent episode of “Grilling JR”, Jim Ross discussed not being a fan of The Undertaker making a gimmick change to The American Badass, but ultimately it being the right thing to do. Here’s what he had to say:
The reinvention of the Undertaker was timely. This was largely Mark Calaway’s idea. He was ready to cut his hair, he was ready to change his gothic-like image, the macabre and all the unique powers that the Undertaker possessed, etc., etc. Same logic, Conrad, that you and I have talked about many times. When a main event talent has an opportunity to contribute to their program, to their storyline, then they have skin in the game now, and egocentrically, and being alpha males, the last thing anybody wants to do is be involved in a failing scenario, and Undertaker reinvented himself, and obviously by the pop, so important, he was right on the money. It was time, and the fans ate it up. They believed in the character but now they believed in Undertaker 2.0. So I thought it was well done, and my hat’s off to ‘Taker because it was his idea.
I was not a big proponent of that change, because I loved the Undertaker presentation as it was. He kept getting better at it, better at it, more things were done to embrace it and to embelish it, so I was hoping we were making the right decision, and I got my answer in about 10 seconds when he came out in that new attire, new everything, I saw the answer, clear as day. I heard the answer as well.
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Credit: Grilling JR. H/T 411Mania.