The Undertaker
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The Undertaker Took Inspiration From Slasher Icons, Tried To Be ‘As Far From Everybody Else’ In WWE

The Undertaker is inspired by some of the silver screen’s most infamous monsters.

Speaking on the True Geordie podcast, The Undertaker explained how the original concept of his “Deadman” gimmick evolved over the years. Undertaker says the character initially had some Western flair to it, but he saw it as an opportunity to stand out in a way that was different from the then-current roster in the early 1990s.

“When I was given the character, it was presented to be on storyboards with the original likeness, which was Vince’s brainchild. It was his character and it was based off the old western Undertaker, and the two guys go out on Main Street, they have a gunfight, the undertaker comes out and measures them for their box. That was the original concept. So I’m presented that,” he explained.

“[I] started thinking about [how I] wanted to stand out in the current product by delivering a different promo than Hulk Hogan, Randy Savage etc, typical interview style — I’ve always noticed that when people are screaming and yelling, you might look and see what the noise is, but you’re not too interested. But when people talk low and slow, that’s when people lean in because they wanna [know], what is this guy? What’s he saying? So that was one of the big things,” Undertaker explained. “I’m not gonna be a screamer, I’m not gonna be a guy over the top, saying ‘brother’ every other [word].”

The Undertaker then shared how he began to study famous slasher movie villains like Michael Myers of Halloween and Jason Voorhees of Friday the 13th. He says he worked to take elements of each character and fit them into what he was doing as a wrestler.

“I started studying characters, like I’d watch Friday The 13th and Jason Voorhees and these indestructible monster characters, right, Michael Myers. And I’m like, ‘okay this is cool, I can do this. I can get hit and I can get beat but when I sit up, oh people are gonna lose their mind’ because those things usually keep people down and now this just keeps coming. He just sits up and he’s just like this indestructible monster. So I’m studying all this and I’m putting it up against what everybody else is doing. And there’s just a stark contrast in what I was doing and what [they] were doing, all the way down to the black and the gray,” he said. “Just real monotone colors where everybody else is getting color and as loud.

“And I was trying to be as far from everybody else as I could. So yeah I studied all those gory movies and all those characters and tried to figure out okay what can I take from Jason Voorhees and what can I take from Michael Myers and incorporate it and make it my own. So yeah there was a lot of studying done in how to take things, make them mine,” he noted, “and then make them work in the realm of sports entertainment.”

Read More: The Undertaker Has ‘Always Been Fascinated With Death,’ Recalls Taking Naps In Caskets Backstage In WWE

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