It sounds a little corny, but I cannot help it. The Undertaker, the character, had to be humanized to be in sync with the reality era and to be afforded with the luxuries of farewell.
One might think that returning as American Badass would have been a simple way. There is, however, one problem that the ABA character is no more culturally relevant. At such a vantage point in ‘Taker’s career, it would rather have a negative effect.
However, there is one commonality.
Not many people would remember, but the transition of the Undertaker from the Deadman to the ABA happened over a long period. In his role as “the lord of darkness," the Undertaker evolved every day to become more humane.
Something similar happened this time as well.
It all began on WrestleMania 26. During the last moments, Undertaker hugged HBK to show his respect. That one moment brought Undertaker into the realms of humanity.
The subsequent feud with Kane was also based on a single point—that Undertaker had become humane. He was no more the favorite demon of the devil. Due to various reasons, he lost all his encounters with Kane. In a way, it helped WWE’s cause.
The end of his WrestleMania match with Triple H was the last step. For the first time in his career, he had to be carted out of the arena. The immortal Undertaker had become mortal, a mere human with all humane limitations.
In his moral defeat last year, WWE planted the seeds for the swansong of the Undertaker. He can claim to have returned to erase images of the last year. He might win his last match in order to affirm his legacy and leave with a victory to rest in peace. Intentionally or unintentionally, WWE found out a way to have him undefeated till the end.
Fans often question the ability of WWE to create and build a longstanding story. The entire saga of the Undertaker, right from the beginning to the very end, is perhaps the apex testimony to the genius of Vince McMahon. We can argue that such genius only wakes up, when it deals with something close to him. But nonetheless, the credit must be given where it’s due.