Tuesday, March 12, 2024

The History of WWE WrestleMania: VI

In my opinion the worst WrestleMania of all time.  Fight me.....

The Skydome - 4/1/90

'Mania returned to a stadium setting in 1990, with a gigantic face vs. face main event for both of the singles championships.  Hulk Hogan vs. Ultimate Warrior was arguably an even bigger match than Hogan vs. Savage, in that it had never happened before and featured the company's top two babyfaces head to head.

The match itself was similar in style to the Hogan-Savage match from a year earlier, except it lacked a great wrestler to carry the workload.  Hogan and Warrior did what they could, but two mediocre wrestlers squaring off for 20+ minutes can only do so much.  While the aura surrounding the match was pretty epic, the match itself always left me rather bored, and I consider it one of the more overrated matches in WWF/E history.  It was notable however for being one of the few times Hulk Hogan ever jobbed cleanly.  This was a true passing of the torch (which unfortunately didn't really stick, but that's beside the point); a rare example of Hogan acting unselfishly and putting his stamp of approval on a would-be successor.

A titanic battle.....between two mediocre workers.

One of the biggest issues with 'Mania 6 is that the main event was so colossal the rest of the card felt totally underwhelming.  Other than Ted Dibiase vs. Jake Roberts, an okay match for Ted's Million Dollar Championship, there are almost no memorable matches.  Demolition vs. Andre & Haku was notable for being Andre's final North American match (the entirety of which he spent on the apron) and for Demolition winning the Tag Titles for the third and final time, Mr. Perfect and Brutus Beefcake had something approaching a decent match until Perfect's overconfidence cost him, and the Hart Foundation steamrolled over the Bolsheviks to catapult themselves back into the title hunt (which was really a 19-second waste of the company's best team).

Only watchable match other than the main event, really

The rest of the roster was rather haphazardly inserted into various slots on the card, but no other matches of any value came out of it.  Randy Savage for example went from headlining two consecutive 'Manias to being on the losing end of an ill-conceived mixed tag match with Sherri Martel against Dusty Rhodes and Sapphire (interesting how far most wrestlers fell down the card after feuding with Hogan).

Another issue is that the roster was in desperate need of a shakeup.  Most of the players were sort of treading water at this point.  No heels were being put in a position to challenge the babyface champions; in fact Warrior's first challenger was Haku of all people, and he spent the summer feuding with Rick Rude who he'd already beaten soundly a year earlier.  Hogan would recycle his Heavyweight vs. Super Heavyweight formula that summer, delivering stinker after stinker against Earthquake.  1990 was an awful year creatively for the WWF, and WrestleMania VI is a perfect illustration of everything I didn't like about the product.  Along with the first 'Mania, I consider number 6 to be at the bottom of the heap.

Best Match: Hulk Hogan vs. Ultimate Warrior
Worst Match: Big Bossman vs. Akeem
What I'd Change: Where do I start?  Other than the huge money main event and one or two other matches, there's nothing going on here.  Cut the show down to no more than 10 matches and only use your A and B players.
Most Disappointing Match: Oddly, probably Hogan vs. Warrior.  At the time I expected something amazing.  When I watched the show on VHS I was pretty dismayed by the mediocrity of the match.
Most Pleasant Surprise: Yeesh, nothing really.
Overall Rating: 2/10

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