WWE Art Of PPV Posters (Part 3) : My Top 12, From Kane To Randy Orton
In the third part of this series of articles*, I would like to present you my 12 favorite pay-per-view posters. In continuity with the Part One**, the slideshow will start in 1997 to end in 2009.
Since 1995, with the new In Your House filler pay-per-views, the posters creators got the occasion to experiment a lot of new things.
The creators have also learned to master a bunch of brand new graphic technologies; and, as you will discover, there has been an artistic revolution in 1997. No more generic posters and ''primitive'' designs.
Of course there have been low visual quality posters in those years, but, as you will see, many of them were great masterpieces.
This poster is the first real masterpiece created by WWE. It took long to finally create such a piece of art, but they came with something very original and memorable.
Since then, the art of pay-per-view posters would never be the same anymore. If it was not for the plain writing and logo, that poster would be perfect.
That Summerslam will be remembered for the Owen Hart's botched piledriver on Stone Cold who broke his neck; that injury never really healed and led Steve Austin to a precipitated retirement.
Also, as the poster suggests, the main event featured Bret Hart against The Undertaker. Shawn Michaels, who was the guest referee, cost the match to The Deadman who lost the WWE Championship; that event ignited the first rivalry between HBK and The Phenom.
King Of The Ring 2000
That poster is artistic perfection. There is no compromise; the concept is great and represents wisely the pay-per-view. The gothic writing and the nice logo are perfectly integrated to the picture.
In the largest King Of The Ring ever with 32 contestants, Kurt Angle emerged victorious in that once-prestigious tournament; this achievement launched his career to superstardom.
Royal Rumble 2001
In the lineage of the 1991's Royal Rumble, that poster reached a pure form of visual art. Awesome logo and overall concept. The poster alone was sufficient to create hype for the upcoming show and to sell it to the viewers.
That edition of the annual pay-per-view was one of the best ever and made history with two still standing records.
On that evening Kane eliminated a record number of 11 wrestlers.
Stone Cold also got his name written in the record books by winning the prestigious battle royal for a third time.
King Of The Ring 2001
The King Of The Ring pay-per-views seem to have greatly inspired the posters' creators; once again, they came with another outstanding piece of art.
It might sound cheesy, but they kept a winning formula and modified it nicely. Same logo as the previous one and same gothic writing, with a simple chair that would look naked without the uncommon background design.
In the 2001 traditional tournament, Edge has defeated Kurt Angle, the reigning King Of The Ring, to become the next breaking WWE icon.
One of the rare poster featuring a woman wrestler not in a swimsuit. That picture strangely reminds me the movie Red Sonja but it's a nice feast for the eyes.
With Torrie Wilson, one of the hottest Diva in WWE history, they could have simply show her in a swimsuit, but they came with a great concept and an original presentation.
In the main event, World Heavyweight Champion Triple H beat Shawn Michaels in a Three Stages Of Hell match (a street fight, a cage match and a ladder match).
A weird poster, but a nice one. A good mix of horror and science fiction movies style featuring Kane.
Not necessarily the best looking poster, but an amazing originality and a unique subtle display of violence far away from the current PG Era.
The most notable results for that pay-per-view were Randy Orton defeating HBK and Christian defeating Y2J and Rob Van Dam to retain the Intercontinental Title; in the main event, Goldberg defeated HHH to become the new World Heavyweight Champion.
December To Dismember 2006
The poster was great with its classic hardcore concept. That artwork has no weakness and is enjoyable to watch because it makes our imagination work.
The card featured various matches and only the ECW Title was on the line in an Extreme Elimination Chamber match; Bobby Lashley has been crowned the new Champion over five opponents.
Judgment Day 2007
That other poster featuring Kane is an amazing representation of what hell could look like. It could be used for any apocalyptic movie or any death metal album cover.
This is one of my favorite because of the awesome graphic details; the logo and he writing are perfectly integrated to create an great evil masterpiece.
Both major Titles have been defended successfully. Edge retained the World Heavyweight Title against Batista and The Great Khali could not take the WWE Championship away from John Cena.
No Mercy 2007
Randy Orton's dememted look and the overall concept made a classic pay-per-view poster.
The bird on in Orton's hands is intriguing and make us wonder what he will do with it; squash it or let it free?
A poster that can make work our head like this fully deserves to be called a masterpiece.
During that event, Triple H was put in three matches; he won his first match against Randy Orton to become the new WWE Champion; he then defended his Title by beating Umaga; and, at the end of the evening, HHH lost the belt to Orton in a last man standing match.
Survivor Series 2007
A brutally good looking poster featuring Edge with a chainsaw in the middle of a destroyed ring.
Not the best logo or writing, but it's a great piece of art.
There as been only one traditional Survivor Series match and it probably marked the beginning of the end for that pay-per-view.
In the main event, Batista retained the World Heavyweight Title against The Undertaker in a Hell In A cell match; but it was not without Edge's interference.
An outstanding apocalyptic scene perfectly representing the theme of the pay-per-view. There is nothing wrong in that image and the intense look on Batista's face complete it very well.
In a triple threat bout, Edge became the new World Heavyweight Champion by defeating Batista and The Undertaker. On the same night, Chris Jericho defeated Randy Orton by disqualification to the WWE Title didn't change hands.
Survivor Series 2009
Not the greatest poster all-around, but there's an amazing combination of humor and war theme concept. It would look better without the ''Degeneration-X'' word that is not well integrated to the image.
For the last Survivor Series in WWE history, there were two triple threat matches for both major titles; in addition two traditional Survivor Series elimination matches took place.
Both reigning champions retained; The Undertaker beat Big Show and Y2J then John Cena defeated Triple H and HBK.