Undercard Overhaul is one fantasy booker's attempt to write the future, offering suggestions and stories to improve WWE TV while operating under a single, unbreakable code: make it memorable, make it wrestling.
Today's chapter pitches an ongoing plot to bring Shawn Michaels out of retirement for one more match, D-Generation X against the Brothers of Destruction at WrestleMania 28.
Kane drags Cena's father out of the crowd and choke-slams him through the Spanish announce table.
Seeing his father in a quivering heap sends Cena over the edge. He brutally attacks Kane with a steel chair, hitting him over and over again. But the Big Red Machine just keeps laughing and begging for more.
Triple H and a mob of security has to drag Cena to the back, practically frothing at the mouth as a euphoric Kane collapses on the ramp, job well done.
The arena goes dark, Undertaker's bells toll and Kane is mysteriously gone when the lights return.
The next night on Raw, WWE Chief Operating Officer Triple H limits Cena to Raw and banishes Kane to Smackdown, separating them before anyone else gets hurt.
He orders Cena to get his head straight before being interrupted by the Undertaker, who viciously attacks the COO in an attempt to goad him into a match at WrestleMania.
Instead of fighting back, Triple H fights out of a Tombstone and escapes up the ramp. Despite the chorus of boos, he's intent on keeping his word: all business, no pleasure and never the two shall meet.
(The Dead Man is already advertised for this show, Feb. 20 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.)
On Smackdown, Triple H is talking shop with Teddy Long when he's confronted by Kane.
The Big Red Monster is angry at Triple H for undermining his plans for John Cena and sneers at the COO for not accepting the Undertaker's challenge.
Kane calls Hunter a coward, says he's too afraid to face his brother again, and promises that Triple H (like Cena) will learn to embrace the hate.
Paul Bearer appears on Raw to warn Triple H of a terrible future if he doesn't accept the Undertaker's challenge, calling him a slave to mortality.
But Triple H maintains his composure. He's not going to let personal issues cloud his judgment. He's got a company to run and a family to feed.
Bearer continues to moan as we cut to commercial, "I warned you, Triple H! The blood is on your hands!"
On Smackdown, Curt Hawkins is frustrated at not getting any opportunities on Raw or Smackdown.
In an echo of Sean O'Haire, Kane convinces Hawkins to embrace the hate and make a statement, draw strength from his anger and attack Royal Rumble winner Sheamus. Teddy Long won't be able to ignore him then.
Sheamus slaughters Hawkins but Kane appears to be growing stronger, wringing his hands and smiling at the damage he's caused.
On Raw, Triple H receives a special delivery, presumably from the Undertaker (if the black wrapping paper and purple bow are any indication). Inside the box is a photo from Triple H and Stephanie's wedding in some gnarly evil frame.
Hunter scowls for a moment, obviously angry, before throwing the photo in the garbage and storming off, which segues into a commercial.
When we come back, Triple H is on his way to the ring to make some other kind of announcement, completely unrelated to the Undertaker's gift. He's still playing it cool.
On Smackdown, Kane continues to play with people's lives, telling Heath Slater and Johnny Curtis that Epico and Primo are offering a Tag Team Championship match to the first team who goes down to their private locker room and signs the contract.
Slater and Curtis get lost in the creepy bowels of the building, trying to reassure one another that "it's gotta be around here somewhere" and "surely we're almost there."
Cut back to Slater and Curtis outside a door marked "Tag Team Champions," somewhere down a dark hallway, and the door opens before they can knock. Slater peeks his head into the dark room and they're both pulled into the shadows by black-robed figures.
Shawn Michaels arrives on Raw to persuade Triple H to fight the Undertaker one more time.
"You might be the only one who can do it," Shawn says. "After everything we've been through, he's the one that's always got away. You have a chance to change that, Hunter. You can redeem every one of us but you've got to accept the match."
Triple H wants it, he does, but WWE comes first and it's just not going to happen. Let some young stud face the Undertaker. He's got bigger things to do.
Teddy Long invites Shawn Michaels to Smackdown as a motivational speaker, where he offers the roster some advice about WrestleMania.
HBK goes to leave but he's jumped by Heath Slater and Johnny Curtis, now bare-chested and wearing black boots, tights, and lucha masks (not unlike CM Punk's old hood).
The hate-fueled tandem drop Shawn at Kane's feet, who gives him a message from the Undertaker—"It only gets worse for Hunter from here"—before throwing him into a (gimmicked) windshield.
Shawn Michaels arrives on Raw and demands a match against Kane at WrestleMania.
Triple H tells him to calm down, reminds him that he's retired and that he's suspended Heath Slater and Johnny Curtis until they've undergone psychiatric evaluation.
Shawn says that's not good enough, that Hunter has been dodging Undertaker for weeks and the Dead Man's only going to escalate his tactics until Triple H accepts the match.
"What do you want me to do, Shawn?" he asks. "I've got a lot on my plate right now. The board of directors is breathing down my neck, watching everything I do and this year's WrestleMania will make or break my future with the company."
"The board of directors can suck it," Shawn replies, angrily walking away.
On Smackdown, Kane arrives to find out that he's been barred from the building. The poor guard who tells him that Triple H has suspended him for a week eats a patented uppercut for his troubles; there's a huge brawl between Kane, the guards and some of the wrestlers who came to assist the guards.
Kane is finally forcefully escorted off the premises.
Triple H is walking to his car to end the show when it erupts in a giant fireball. Despite their absences, Kane and the Undertaker can still send a pretty clear message.
Shawn Michaels opens Raw in the ring.
He says that if Triple H isn't going to do anything about Undertaker and Kane, he will and challenges the Brothers of Destruction to a handicap match at WrestleMania.
The Brothers come out, of course, and start a two-on-one brawl against the Heartbreak Kid. They're really doing a number on Shawn when Triple H's music hits and Hunter clears the ring with a sledgehammer.
"I didn't want to do this," he says, "but it's out of my hands now. You wanted me to embrace the hate, Kane? You wanted a match with me at WrestleMania, Undertaker? Well, you're on. You're both on. Undertaker and Kane, the Brothers of Destruction, will face D-Generation X at WrestleMania! No disqualifications! No count-outs! No holds barred! April 1st, me and Shawn are gonna put this thing to rest once and for all!"
On Smackdown, Triple H is about to sign his resignation when Stephanie stops him with a fax. The board wants to wait and see how this thing plays out. He looks at his wife, then back down to the fax and grimaces.
Shawn Michaels laces up his boots for the first time in two years.
He and Triple H go out there with Undertaker and Kane and tear the house down as only they can, all four men able to rely on each other in turn to hide any shortcomings of age.
Undertaker and Kane simultaneously Tombstone Shawn and Hunter for the win, extending Undertaker's streak to 20-0 in the only match on the card that can rival John Cena and the Rock in terms of magnitude and sheer excitement.
I can see it now: there are bodies everywhere and Jim Ross is screaming, "With God as my witness, none of these men may ever compete again!"
If you enjoyed this installment of Undercard Overhaul, you might also enjoy previous entries in the series.
Vol. One featured the Celtic Connection; the Funky Fossils; Heath Slater No More; the Savage Samoans; and the Cole-Guerrero Coalition.
Vol. Two featured Marked for Death; Kofi Kingston, Problem Solver; Christian's Curse; Attention-Seeking Hypochondriac; and Atten-Hut!
Vol. Three featured S.O.B. Inc.; Jack Swagger, American Ambassador; Resurrect the Hardcore Championship; Diversify the Divas; and "I'm Tyler Black and I'm Here to Wrestle."
Vol. Four featured Cena to Smackdown; the African Embassy; Stereotypical Struggle; Johnny Curtis, Ultimate Hero; and Perry Saturn Enters the Royal Rumble.
Vol. Five: Power Trip Edition featured Exit Ace; Enter Austin; Teddy Long's Happy Ending; Commission...er Rules; and Triple H Talks Titles.
Vol. Six featured Jericho Wins the Rumble; the War of English Pedigree; R-Truth Done Gets Culture; Full-Blooded Irishman; and Christian, Ultimate Altruist.
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