After portraying such characters as Unabomb, the Christmas Creature, and evil dentist Isaac D. Yankem, Glenn Jacobs’ wrestling career took its most successful turn when he debuted as Kane in October of 1997.
The debut took place during the main event of WWE’s Badd Blood: In Your House pay-per-view, with the Big Red Monster costing his storyline brother The Undertaker a victory in the first ever Hell in a Cell match against Shawn Michaels. The two men would be linked for the rest of their careers, with Undertaker inducting Jacobs into the WWE Hall of Fame as part of the class of 2021.
Speaking in a recent interview with Fox News, the real life mayor of Knox County opened up about taking on such a drastic character shift in the late ’90’s, saying it was different than he’d originally envisioned but that he was excited to be The Undertaker’s brother.
“I was pumped because it was The Undertaker’s brother and you cannot ask for anything better than that. That’s literally the Holy Grail of characters in WWE.
“When I first saw the character in the conceptual art, that did throw me a little bit because that’s not what I had in mind for the character. That’s not what Undertaker had for the character and some other folks that I had talked to. We all thought it would a lot grittier and have like a Michael Myers or a Jason Voorhees look – you know, someone that had been institutionalized and escaped or something like that.”
“Vince McMahon Was A Genius” – Glenn Jacobs On Kane’s WWE Origin
Continuing, Jacobs revealed that WWE Chairman Vince McMahon had a specific vision in mind for the Big Red Machine, one that would see Kane as a multifaceted character. Jacobs believes Vince’s vision was “genius” as it had more layers than what he was originally picturing for the character and was different to anything that had been done previously.
“Vince McMahon’s idea was Kane was really hiding his failings and compensating for all of the things that made him weak and all that kind of stuff by being a superhero and the operative word with Kane was not evil, actually, it was cool. You wanted Kane to look cool and be cool.
“And that was one of the times I realized Vince was a genius because he had taken what was some superficial psychology on our part and gone a lot deeper into it and into the mind of this character already deeper than I had. If we’d done the Jason Vorhees, Michael Myers look it would’ve been OK, but that’s been done before. But the Kane character and the Kane look was completely different than, I think, anything that ever really been done.”
In another recent interview, Glenn Jacobs said that he isn’t ruling out a return to WWE. He hasn’t competed inside the squared circle since a brief appearance in the 2021 Royal Rumble.