Thursday, April 1, 2010

Was the Ultimate Warrior replaced by an impostor?

And so the Ultimate Warrior was back, picking up where he left off. Or was he? If this new man wasn't the old Ultimate Warrior, then who was he? Kerry Von Erich? Jim Powers? Some unknown 6-foot-2 muscleman? After all, the WWF has pulled similar switches over the years. The Killer Bees' whole gimmick was based on their masquerading as one another; there was the Dave/Earl Hebner switcharoo at WrestleMania III; the Undertaker (Mark Calloway) was replaced for a stretch by Brian Lee (known lovingly to fans as "the Underfaker"); Jim Ross brought imposter versions of Diesel and Razor Ramon to RAW after Kevin Nash and Scott Hall, the men who originally played the roles, defected to WCW in 1996.

Which is all to say that even if rumors of the Warrior's actual death were unfounded, the idea of replacing him wasn't at all unlikely.

And for anyone looking for clues, the Ultimate Warrior's career sent off many more signal flares than did all of the Beatles' album art and reversed tracks after Paul McCartney "died." There were the thanatophilic promos, the morbid feud with the Undertaker, and now, upon his return, a new grudge against voodoo doctor Papa Shango, another mystical overseer of the hereafter