FEEDBACK: WrestleMania XX

This Friday on Rewind-A-Wai, Wai Ting and I are reviewing WRESTLEMANIA XX from Madison Square Garden in New York City.

This show was chosen by Espresso Executive Producer Chad Olsen

Please leave us your quick feedback and any questions about this time period in WWE history for the two of us to answer on the show.

Rewind-A-Wai will be released Friday morning for all members of the POST Wrestling Cafe.

Sunday, March 14th, 2004
Madison Square Garden
*Triple H vs. Chris Benoit vs. Shawn Michaels for the World title
*Eddie Guerrero vs. Kurt Angle for the WWE title
*The Undertaker vs. Kane
*Bill Goldberg vs. Brock Lesnar w/ Steve Austin as special referee
*Randy Orton, Ric Flair, and Batista vs. Mick Foley and The Rock
*Big Show vs. John Cena for the U.S. title
*Christian vs. Chris Jericho
*Sable and Torrie Wilson vs. Stacy Keibler and Miss Jackie in a Playboy Evening Gown Match
*Victoria vs. Molly in a Title vs. Hair Match
*Scotty 2 Hotty and Rikishi vs. The Bashams vs. The APA vs. World’s Greatest Tag Team for the SmackDown tag title
*Booker T. and Rob Van Dam vs. The Dudley Boyz vs. La Resistance vs. Garrison Cade and Mark Jindrak for the World tag titles
*Chavo Guerrero Jr. vs. Rey Mysterio vs. Billy Kidman vs. Tajiri vs. Ultimo Dragon vs. Jamie Noble vs. Nunzio vs. Funaki vs. Shannon Moore in a Cruiserweight Open for the Cruiserweight title

Hey guys

I was 13 years old watching this at a bar in Myrtle Beach with my Dad. The place was jammed and everyone was popping for just about everything. The highlights being: Trish turning on Jericho, Undertakers return as the dead man, and the place nearly exploded when HHH tapped out to the crossface. I specifically remember The final shot of Eddie and Chris celebrating in the ring together with their respective titles, and the whole bar was giving them a standing ovation - still gives me chills when i think about it!

Nostalgia aside, rewatching this show was surprisingly easy. The tag matches did what they were meant to do, a lot of the singles programs were very entertaining, specifically Christian vs Jericho, and both World Title matches were absolutely superb. Angle vs Eddie was so well laid out and the 3 way is arguably my favourite of all time, next to Daniels, Joe and Styles.

All in all, a long but very entertaining show


The most memorable match for me was Goldberg/Lesnar, and not in a good way. Do you think there is any chance that we get this same type of performance this year especially if Brock knows he is on the way out?

This show was hit and miss in terms of in ring. Kane/Taker have always been pretty awful together, the lingerie match wasn’t anything, Goldberg/Brock was dreadful but is entertaining in completely the wrong way now and there was a lot of rushed multi-man matches that meant very little. The flip side is that Jericho/Christian had a potential show stealer, Angle/Guerrero was everything I was hoping for at the time and the World title triple threat was a match of the year that was only kind of beaten when the 3 had a rematch a month later.
One of the things that stands out to me is how WWE made this feel like a truly important milestone, they spent so much time hyping the show and even after. I bought a special edition box of the show that had a ton of extras that just made the event feel huge. I find it funny that they did this with 20 while 10 and even 30 didn’t get such treatment. Wanted to get your guys thoughts on this and more so do you feel WWE will make a big deal of a numbered Mania again or are they sticking to moving away from the numbers?

This wrestlemania is a product of a confused time. While having incredible title matches and solid opportunities for people like Orton, Batista and Cena to shine (all three who would obviously carry the company over the next few years), you also have an awkward lingerie match, an awkward Goldberg/Lesnar match, and a LOT of confused multi man matches which seemed like a desperate attempt to get everyone on. Glad Ultimo got a chance to do a Mania though. Can’t complain. The bad was forgettable and the great was exactly the opposite. 8/10.

This is a tough one for me. At the time, 16 year old me was just getting into wrestling outside of WWE and becoming a bit smarter about the business. So Benoit was quickly becoming a hero of mine as the best in ring worker in the company, and I was so happy to see him finally rise to the top. This made WM20 one of my favorite PPV’s for a long time until…

Now watching back, it’s only an ok Wrestlemania all the way through with a couple big highlights being Angle/Eddie and Jericho/Christian. The Lesnar/Goldberg match is funny to watch back now after the last year they had together. It’s just still hard to watch Benoit matches and especially a show that focused on him (and Eddie) in the main event.

Before 2007, WM20 was one of the best WMs. Now its not as easy to watch anymore due to both Benoit and Eddie deaths. That ending with both holding each others hands in celebration gives the show an almost haunting feeling now. On the other hand WM20 was the first WM I watched live and I remember it fondly. This was the first mania where they really pushed the nostalgia factor and hall of fame. I even remember the Spike TV top 10 WM matches countdown aired before this and Ill list it if you are interested in picking it apart. ranked from 10-1

Angle/Benoit from WM17
Hogan/Warrior from WM6
Shawn/Austin from WM14
WM1 main event tag
Bret/Austin from WM13
Rock/Hogan from WM18
Savage/Steamboat from WM3
Razor/ Shawn from WM10
Triangle ladder match from WM16
Overall Winner: Ironman match from WM12

The opener was hot as Cena was beloved at this point and time, poor Ultimo Dragon tripped on his way to the ring, Christian and Jericho had a solid bout, and Goldberg and Lesnar had the weirdest WM match ever in terms of crowd reactions.

The two main events were outstanding but the Benoit one is a hard blow for any wrestling fan due to what happened. Believe me the documentary on Benoit WWE is much more disturbing to watch now compared to his matches. In the end while forever shrouded by the Benoit, WM20 is a solid show and gets a 7/10.

I travelled to this show from the U.K with a friend at the grand old age of 19. It was our first long haul trip without parents, so my view of the show will be quite rose tinted. We were massive John Cena fans at the time, and I walked away from the show with a Word Life baseball tee and Chain. We were hugely excited to see the Undertaker’s return, and his entrance with Paul Bearer was a moment I won’t ever forget. We also saw Undertaker getting into a limo leaving his hotel in Times Square the following morning, and it is the only time I have genuinely been starstruck to the point of just stopping dead in the street.

The event itself was great, pretty much all of the stars of the time were on the card and I remember enjoying the Rock n’ Sock vs Evolution match a lot. Jericho/Christian was fantastic, and the turn was made even better as a result of the long build up the feud had. The main event was also a really good, well paced match.

Another memory that sticks out was a guy who was sitting next to us, not a huge wrestling fan it seemed, ragging on Mysterio’s attire choice after he lost Cruiserweight Open, saying “That’s what you get for coming dressed as The Flash, dude!”. He was also very confused by the constant booing during Lesnar/Goldberg.

Finally, a shout out to the Tick Tock Diner near MSG and their delicious ‘Disco Fries’, it was a hot bed of wrestling fans after the show with some people offering up their Ringside chair to the highest bidder.

I give it a 9/10 using Basic Thuganomics.

There is a video package at the beginning of Vince, Shane and a baby sort of implying that Shane would become the heir apparent.
I stopped following wrestling not long after this, and returned to it about four years ago and saw that Shane had gone and Stephanie was now in that position.
Do you know whether there was a plan for Shane to take over not long after Wrestlemania XX, or was it an opportunity to show off Vince’s grandchild? That video package certainly felt like a passing of the torch.

Looking back it’s amazing how this Wrestlemania seems to be remembered most by the Goldberg and Brock sham of a match. I enjoy a good train wreck so I still get sick pleasure watching how that match turned out. Without the crowd reaction it was the most basic match they could’ve put on.

The main event is probably one of favorite matches ever. I’m one of the few who can watch a Benoit match without issue so I still enjoy the drama and story of this match. The way HBK got into the match is still fairly lame in my book but I didn’t complain about how the match turned out. There was always that doubt when watching the match live that Benoit would lose. The ending was perfect and the post match was a scene i’ll never forget.

Overall I give this show a 9/10. The main events delivered and the filler was basic but not offensive. Couldn’t ask for much more in a Wrestlemania.

I was 13 at the time of this show and I hadn’t watched any wrestling for well over a year but I stayed up all night (I’m in the UK) to watch WrestleMania XX because I’d heard my favourite wrestler since I was 9 had won the Royal Rumble. I don’t remember being really gripped by anything in the main body of the show. I was gripped by the main event though. I don’t remember a lot of action from the match but I remember being on the edge of my seat the whole time. I’d struggle to recall a match I was ever more invested in. I had the volume on my TV set to like 2 so I wouldn’t wake my family up, but I popped really loud when Benoit won and the moment with Eddie and Chris, both world champions, was really special. I know it’ll never appear on one of WWE’s sentimental video packages (and shouldn’t) but even now it comes to mind when I think of “WrestleMania moments”. This is the show that rekindled my love of wrestling.
I went to school the next day on 0 sleep, raving about the match I just watched and made 3 new friends over a shared love of wrestling who are still my good friends to this day. I quickly discover Ring of Honor, TNA and FWA, who ran shows a bus ride away from me. Wrestling has been my happy place ever since. I haven’t gone back to rewatch it in a long time but because of it’s significance in my life I have to give it a solid 10 bald Molly Hollys out of 10.

I feel like this Mania was right into that 2000-2004 period of where the cards were stacked of talent and it was full of star power. i feel like eddie-kurt was edde’s last true great match as i feel his body betrayed him and handicapped him into having the great matches he was known for.

2 questions

  1. is the Four horsewomen curtain call from takeover brooklyn 2015 the closest thing to we’ve had to a heartfelt special moment like eddie and benoit’s closing scene?

  2. do you guys have an idea on who was on the creative team at this time? how much influence did paul heyman have?

Anthony From Los Angeles
I loved the spot in the Evolution vs Rock’n’Sock Connection match where Flair takes the back bump but then stops Foley from getting the hot tag by trapping his ankle from the back position. Shortly after, Batista came in and took wrist control to throw a couple lariats Foley’s way, I was like “RAAAAIIINNNMAAAAAKEEEEERRRR!!!”

Definitely a better match on paper than in execution. This card brought out the worst in the brand splits, where they had 2 fourway tag title matches, both under 8 minutes long, or the 10 man cruiserweight gauntlet in under 10 minutes, it felt more important to cram everyone on instead of having a great match. The awesomeness of seeing Ultimo Dragon was entirely negated by the fact he was eliminated in under 4 minutes. I was very excited to watch Taker vs Kane, but outside of the entrance, it was really lackluster. Both heavyweight title matches were good, but it felt this night lived and died with Goldberg vs Brock, which was horrible. 4 untied boots out of 10.

I stopped watching wrestling after Wrestlemania 10 so this is the first time I’ve watched this show. There are some great matches here especially the 2 Championship bouts but the rest of it felt a lot like filler matches and werer’t that exciting.

It’s incredible how bad the Goldberg vs Lesner fight actually is. I’d heard about it and watched some highlights but never sat through the whole thing. I hated the inclusion of Austin as well and can’t believe the 2 wrestlers agreed to let him ‘stun’ them both post match.

I’m not a fan of these matches with 6+ wrestlers unless its the TLC or MITB matches so the multiple team tag matches weren’t for me.

It was fine, i did fast forward a little (sorry) 5/10 from me.