In his 30+ year career, The Undertaker became one of the most respected men in professional wrestling. Throughout his career, he worked hard to maintain a mystique in front of fans, holding true to his on-screen character at all times.
However, after an episode of Monday Night Raw in 2002, multiple members of the WWE roster banded together to try to get Undertaker to break character in front of the live audience. The Undertaker had teamed with Booker T and Goldust in the main event, and afterward Booker performed his signature Spinaroonie to a huge fanfare.
When the show was off the air, multiple members of the roster came out to do their own version of the Spinaroonie, including The Rock, Triple H, and even WWE Chairman Vince McMahon. Despite the crowd cheering on The American Badass, he left the arena without performing the move himself.
During a recent interview with Chris Van Vliet, The Undertaker was asked about fellow wrestlers trying to get him to break character. Van Vliet asked specifically about The Rock inventing the People’s Elbow as an outlandish move to try to get The Undertaker to laugh, and ‘Taker confirmed that he remembers that being the reason behind the move.
“I do. You know what, I always thought that was the hokiest ever, but iconic, right? And always to get me to laugh.”
“He Never Got Me To Do A Takeroonie” – The Undertaker On Not Giving In To Vince McMahon
Continuing, The Undertaker recalled the infamous night that Vince McMahon tried to get him to break character and do a Takeroonie. He says the fact that he didn’t perform the move is the one battle he ever won with the WWE Chairman.
“There was such a time period there where, I think that was the company’s goal was to see who could get me to break. I mean, it was nonstop. We spent an hour and a half one night after a TV event in Seattle trying to get me to the Spinaroonie. Booker T swerved me, we’ve been doing this same match after TV tapings that was our advertised dark match. We’ve been doing it for weeks, and, you know every night I’d get on there and say let’s have Booker do a Spinaroonie, everybody go crazy.
“Well, Booker gets the microphone one night and completely swerved me, which was all set up. Vince was in on it, everybody was in on it. You know? He tells his sold out crowd and Seattle that he wants to see a Takeroonie, and I was like you son of a bitch, I was p*ssed. And here they come, one after another, just I mean everybody on the roster, everybody, Rock comes down, Triple H comes down, Big Show’s down, everybody’s down and doing these absolutely awful Spinaroonies.”
When The Undertaker went to leave the arena, he says Paul Wight (then wrestling as Big Show) came out to confront him on the order of Vince McMahon, but said he’d punch the giant if he tried to physically force him into anything.
“And I remember, I remember seeing my spot to leave because the ring is full of people now, right? And the crowd is going nuts trying to get me, everybody’s chanting Takeroonie and all this. And I finally saw my spot and I jumped out of the ring and I headed back to the back. And I looked over my shoulder and here comes Big Show, Vince had sent Big Show to come get me right and he came through that curtain.
“I said, I said you may kill me and eat me, but I’m gonna punch you in the face if you touch me. Vince, never forgive me. Because I always told him, I don’t care who you are, what you do, you’ll never get me to do that. And you don’t tell Vince that you can’t or won’t do something, because it becomes his passion in life. But I can honestly say he never got me to do a Takeroonie. So, I won. That’s the one battle I won with Vince.”
If you use any quotes from this transcription, please credit Insight with Chris Van Vliet and link back to this article with a h/t to Inside the Ropes.