Much more than your average monthly PPV, WrestleMania is all about the big time. It carries the monikers of The Showcase of the Immortals or perhaps the most relevant here, The Grandest Stage Of Them All.
One of the most anticipated features are the elaborate Superstar entrances to the ring. It’s this high level of production that cements WWE’s position as industry leader and adds an air of mystic to proceedings.
Some have even made a career out of trying to one up themselves each year, with the likes of Triple H, Undertaker and John Cena putting in multiple spectacular ring walks over the years.
Andy Spoors risks the wrath of wrestling fans everywhere and narrows a huge field of contenders down to just 10 of the best WrestleMania entrances. For the sake of variety, the list is limited to no more than one entrance per Superstar.
Shinsuke Nakamura – WrestleMania 34
After winning the Royal Rumble in 2018, Nakamura was on top of the world going into his match with WWE Champion AJ Styles. One of the most popular entrance themes in recent years, the noisy New Orleans crowd had been singing it for most the week on Bourbon Street.
Inside the Mercedes Benz Super-Dome they geared up to sing their rendition once more. Flanked on either side by a string of violinists, Nita Strauss provided a guitar version of the theme much to the delight of the WWE Universe.
Andre The Giant – WrestleMania 3
WrestleMania 3 was a big deal. Set in the gigantic Pontiac Silverdome the PPV broke pretty much every record going for the company in 1987. So huge was the venue, Superstars made their way to the squared circle in mini ring carts.
The main event of Hulk Hogan vs a newly villainous Andre The Giant was the only bout big enough for such an event. Andre crammed himself into one of the motorised rings with manager Bobby Heenan as garbage rained down from the 93,000 fans in attendance. Fans still clamour for the return of the mini ring entrances to this day, but no-one could ever look quite as intimidating as the 7-foot giant making his way down for a match.
John Cena – WrestleMania 23
When in Rome, do as the Romans do. When in Detroit, drive a Ford Mustang. Driving through the downtown area of Motor City, a mysterious Mustang made its way to Ford Field smashing through a WrestleMania branded sheet of glass, the driver was revealed to be WWE Champion John Cena.
Arriving for his match in style is one thing, but to do it when your opponent is Mr. WrestleMania himself, Shawn Michaels, is playing with fire.
Ric Flair – WrestleMania 24
You’d think the stylin’, profilin’, limousine riding, jet flying, kiss-stealing, wheelin’ and dealin’ son of a gun, Ric Flair, would have commanded one of the greatest WrestleMania spectacles for his final match in WWE. This wasn’t quite the case for Ric Flair in Orlando.
Opting for an understated yet classy ring walk, Flair looked the definition of a legend, draped in a blue and silver robe. Pausing for a few seconds, fireworks filled the night sky creating a regal scene ahead of what would become one of the most emotional matches in Mania history.
The New Day – WrestleMania 32
Everything’s bigger in Texas, right? How about a Giant 20-foot Cereal box? Dressed in Dragon Ball Z cosplay, The New Day emerged from an over-sized box of their own cereal, Bootie-Os.
As a kid, the best part of opening a new box of cereal was hoping you’d be the one lucky enough to get the prize fall into your bowl. At WrestleMania 32, Big E, Woods and Kofi Kingston became the surprise ahead of their match with The League of Nations.
Bobby ‘The Brain’ Heenan – WrestleMania 9
One of the greatest personalities to grace WWE with his comedic timing, Bobby Heenan provided another memorable moment in a Roman Empire themed WrestleMania. Due to its setting in Caesars Palace in Las Vegas the sight of Heenan riding a camel to the ring wouldn’t have seemed quite as crazy as it sounds.
Looking terrified the mouthy manager emerged from behind the curtain riding the beast of burden backwards. The image of him trying to intimidate an ostrich into leaving him alone is to this day hilarious.
Triple H – WrestleMania 30
Year after year Triple H lays on some of the best ring walks in the professional wrestling industry. Many a WWE fan has recreated his usual water spray on the ring apron. But you’d be hard pressed to find fans with the kind of capital to recreate his WrestleMania entrances.
From Terminators to Motörhead to a custom-motorbike with police escorts, the range of The Cerebral Assassin’s entrances is simply epic. Wrestlemania 30 saw The Game dressed as a skull king sat on his throne. Unbeknown to the WWE Universe at the time, three future women’s Champions flanked him in Charlotte, Alexa Bliss and Sasha Banks.
In a cool throw-back, Charlotte recreated the entrance with servants of her own at WrestleMania 34.
Undertaker – WrestleMania 29
No stranger to epic entrances, the deadman’s ring walk is enough to strike fear into the heart of any opponent. One of the more impressive WrestleMania stage sets, a mini-New York skyline provided an ominous backdrop for Undertaker’s arrival.
Out of the smoke, multiple arms began to rise from the ground, grabbing and clawing at the legs of Taker. Possibly the souls of his vanquished foes, it certainly made for one of the most striking images ever captured in WWE – and one of the finest WrestleMania entrances.
In an interesting piece of trivia, New Day member Xavier Woods revealed he was one of the individuals clawing at Undertaker!
Shawn Michaels – WrestleMania 12
Picture the scene. Manager Jose Lothario emerges to HBK’s Sexy Boy music much to the confusion of Jerry Lawler and Vince McMahon. He beckons to the rafters of Arrowhead Pond arena.
Ever the showman, the spotlight shines on Shawn Michaels as he ziplines over the crowd, gyrating and leaning back while the audience desperately try to capture the moment. A sea of cameras flash as HBK descends is an image that has long been immortalised on Mania hype videos.
A shining example of just how extravagant the event is.
Will we see any new contenders for the WrestleMania entrances list when WrestleMania 37 begins on the WWE Network? Tune in tonight and Sunday night to find out.