Sure, professional wrestling is ridiculous and fake. But when a match takes a surprising turn, sometimes the emotional pain is all too real to fans. Legions of grown-ass adults devolved into mass hysteria Sunday night after Brock Lesnar defeated The Undertaker at WrestleMania XXX, marking an end to professional wrestling’s longest and most celebrated winning streak.
Over the span of two decades, the 6-foot-10, 300-pound wrestling icon never lost a match at World Wrestling Entertainment’s flagship annual event. His famed, 21-0 streak started in 1991 when he took down Superfly Jimmy Snuka at WrestleMania VII. He went on to clobber King Kong Bundy and the Big Boss Man, outmaneuver Shawn Michaels (twice!) and put the finishing moves on Triple H, Ric Flair and The Big Show.
“The Undertaker’s streak was a precious relic preserved lovingly throughout the history of WWE,” wrote Shalaj Lawania on Bleacher Report. “A streak that was born accidentally, and then nurtured into a trophy and one that finally matured as the highlight of every WrestleMania.”
The shocking defeat sent 75,000 fans at New Orleans’ Mercedes-Benz Superdome into a dumbstruck stupor. Within seconds, scores of the crestfallen had taken to Twitter to try to make sense of it all. Those who could summon the words likened the traumatic event to 9/11 or Pearl Harbor. And literally thousands are now looking back at their childhoods and seeing a bloody husk. Here’s a sampling from the fire hose of grief:
The undertaker losing is far and away the greatest tragedy since 9/11.
Undertaker losing was worse than Pearl Harbor and 9/11 combined. — Basedoof The Troof (@SoakedInBIeach) April 7, 2014
I’m pretty sure we can all agree undertaker losing is the worst thing since 9/11 — Justinhudik (@justinhudik) April 7, 2014
Where were you when Pearl Harbor happened? Where were you when 9/11 happened? Where were you when The Undertaker lost at #WrestleMania?
— Aurelio Gonzales Jr. (@AureliOVOXO) April 7, 2014
WWE is scripted and all that shit but damn it took a part of my childhood when Undertaker lost last night.
— Brady Lynch (@Lynchsanity) April 7, 2014
Undertaker losing his WM streak should be breaking news on every news channel right now and on the front page on every newspaper tomorrow
— (@UnofficialNiggz) April 7, 2014
The fact Undertaker lost at Wrestlemania shows judgement day is coming
— I’m On 1 (@Mohammed_Meho) April 7, 2014
Bitch The Undertaker just lost no one gives a fuck about your boyfriend cheating on you.
— Mexican GBE Leader (@vuhsace) April 7, 2014
As of tonight I’m officially a man, Brock didn’t just beat undertaker, but killed my childhood
— Fadrick McFlipperton (@FadyBoutany) April 7, 2014
Telling my little brothers Undertaker lost is like telling a child Santa doesn’t exist so Ima leave it
— Long Live Uncle (@AlmightyJ300_) April 7, 2014
Seeing undertaker lose is like watching my dad get beat up after teaching me how to fight
— Him (@BlazeTheGreat_) April 7, 2014
Bout to lay in my queens bosom and act like Undertaker losing was all a dream
— Tay Robinson (@bye_tay) April 7, 2014
The undertaker streak being broken is like the twin tower going down nobody want to belive or can belive!!!
— Carlos montalvo (@ElNino_De_Oro) April 7, 2014
Watching the undertaker lose is like getting Blue balls. Just fucking and then not being able to finish
— Daniel Bryan (@Cenzo_DeMatteis) April 7, 2014