The Road to Wrestlemania Rewritten: 2016

An in-depth rewrite and analysis of the World Wrestling Entertainment television programming from the Royal Rumble 2016 through to Wrestlemania 32. New feuds, better storylines, and a Wrestlemania worth watching...



I've been a wrestling/sports entertainment fan for a long time. Most of my life really, though my interest has ebbed and flowed as my perspective has changed. When I was younger, I was a fan because the Undertaker was cool, Steve Austin said things I wouldn't dream of saying to my boss, and the Rock and Chris Jericho could make me love them and hate them all in the space of a single promo. [Read more]

Part One: Taking the Fastlane

Episode One

The Monday Night Raw after the Royal Rumble [January 25, 2016] opens with The Authority celebrating their championship victory at the Royal Rumble. Triple H, Vince McMahon, and Stephanie McMahon announce that a review of the entire locker room would take place, and they make it clear that a decision on the #1 contender would be made later in the night... [Read more]

Episode Two

Opening the 28th January 2016 episode of Thursday Night Smackdown, The New Day emerge, hoping to save us all from the misguided thoughts of wrestlers like The Rock, who mocked them on Monday Night Raw, and the crowd for listening to an outdated movie star. They are soon joined by Stardust, another victim of The Rock's jibes, who questions his lineage and quality. [Read more]

Episode Three

"Thou shalt not intentionally provoke the Beast."

That is the commandment Paul Heyman lays down as he and Brock Lesnar open Monday Night Raw. Determined to reclaim what is rightfully his, the Conqueror's advocate pulls no punches as he states that for conspiring to eliminate him from the Royal Rumble, Brock Lesnar will, at his convenience, and with great pleasure, retaliate in kind... [Read more]

Episode Four

While being interviewed about coming to the aid of Sasha Banks on Monday Night Raw, Banks interrupts Becky Lynch, claiming she didn't need the help that was offered, and certainly didn't need friends. Lynch in turn replies that she is not Banks' friend, but when she sees someone in trouble, she helps; and Banks needed help. [Read more]

Episode Five

All three contenders for the World Heavyweight Championship open Monday Night Raw, as Stephanie McMahon oversees the in ring contract signing. Cutting off Paul Heyman as much as she can, Stephanie focuses on getting it signed and getting as far as she possibly can from the three of them before the fireworks. [Read more]

Episode Six

The show opens with Chris Jericho preparing for his match with AJ Styles by questioning Styles' talents, then calling him down to the ring. But before the two can clash, they are interrupted by The Social Outcasts, who insist that both Styles and Jericho leave the ring, as no one is really interested in seeing either of them; it's all about the Outcasts. [Read more]


Episode Seven

Once again, Monday Night Raw begins with Dean Ambrose wanting to get in the face of Brock Lesnar. Unlike previous episodes though, this time Stephanie McMahon is the one that answers Ambrose's challenge. With Ambrose looking for a fight, Stephanie schedules him a match: an Intercontinental Championship match, against Tyler Breeze, Stardust, Neville, and Kevin Owens. And if Roman Reigns interferes, Ambrose loses the match, and his place in the #1 Contender Match at Fastlane... [Read more]

Episode Eight

The final episode before Fastlane opens with the Tag Team Champions coming to the ring to berate their four challengers, and to declare that they will remain the champions until long after Wrestlemania. They are interrupted by the arrival of all four teams, who each declare that they will be the ones to go to Wrestlemania. Stephanie McMahon emerges, and with a smile, organises a Fatal Four Way Match to start the show... [Read more]

Episode Nine

The pay per view opens with a Tables Match between The Usos and The Dudley Boyz. Having each cost the other a place in the Tag Team Tournament final, both teams are looking to settle a score. As the match progresses, Jey Uso hits a Samoan Drop on D-Von Dudley, landing painfully on an overturned table that doesn't break. Bubba Ray is there to retaliate though, hitting Bubba Bombs on Jey and Jimmy. [Read more]

Episode Ten

The second half of the pay per view begins with the rubber match between Chris Jericho and AJ Styles. With only two matches between them previously, the two wrestlers take their time looking for an opportunity to strike, testing their opponent's defences.

Jericho looks to ground Styles, slowing the pace of the match right down with a series of holds, most of them armbars. A dropkick sends Styles crashing out of the ring, as Jericho takes the fight ringside, using as much of the arena as he can get away with to wear down his opponent. [Read more]

Part One Summary

With part one of the rewrite in the books, I want to have a quick look back over the previous ten episodes, and compare the overarching storylines created with what the WWE televised. I'll also have a quick look at the storylines I left out, though you could argue that any match I changed could conceivably have been a storyline, so I'll stick to the major ones - namely, the storyline changes that affected the Fastlane card. [Read more]

Part Two: A Roadblock Lies Ahead

Episode Eleven

Monday Night Raw opens with Vince McMahon, standing in the centre of the ring, beside his newly created Legacy of Excellence Award. Vince talks about the foundations his father built, and the new heights he has taken the business to, and how he wants to start recognising the fantastic work that those that continue to further the business go to. And so, the award is presented to... [Read more]

Episode Twelve

Setting in place more building blocks in this ongoing rivalry, and further establishing the Wyatt Family's dominance over the WWE, the first match of the episode pits Erick Rowan against the mouthpiece of The New Day, Xavier Woods. [Read more]

Episode Thirteen

Shane McMahon opens this episode of Monday Night Raw to a standing ovation. Soaking in the crowd pop, he thanks them for being every bit as amazing as they had been in days gone by.

He then apologises. Because he can't say the same for the WWE. Vince's poor booking choices, the power-hungry obsessions of Triple H and Stephanie, and the overall poor show quality have left many fans disheartened. Disenfranchised. [Read more]

Episode Fourteen

Dean Ambrose comes to the ring, a little worse for wear after all his beatings of late, and takes a seat in the centre of the ring. He talks about how he likes to live by more of a five second plan than a five year plan, living the life in front of his face. And how, while that gets him in trouble sometimes, it also means he has a championship match at Wrestlemania. And he takes his time, happy to do things at his own pace. [Read more]

Episode Fifteen

The show opens with Vince McMahon strutting his way to the ring, confidence back after regaining the upper hand in episode thirteen. He tells the crowd that he hoped they enjoyed the brief return of his soon to be former son, Shane, but that they had better get something through their heads: The Authority was here to stay. Their legacy was built upon more than blood. And Stephanie McMahon and Triple H will take the company to places Shane isn't even worthy of thinking about. And to ensure that, well. Vince has chosen his own personal champion to face the challenger. A champion he created... [Read more]

Episode Sixteen

Before the episode, two more matches for Roadblock are announced. Building on the theme, four wildcard NXT wrestlers get a chance to enter the Andre the Giant Battle Royal.

At the start of the show, footage of the attack on Dean Ambrose and Jack Swagger is shown. It includes the aftermath, during which Bo Dallas is clearly seen with the Social Outcasts watching over Jack Swagger as he is stretchered out... [Read more]

Episode Seventeen

During the pre-show commentary, it is revealed that the card has changed slightly. Not the matches, but the order. Dean Ambrose and Brock Lesnar almost came to blows backstage, and after some debate, the match has been moved to the start of the card, before they disrupt the rest of the show... [Read more]

Part Two Summary

I'll be honest: I haven't really been looking forward to writing this post.

It isn't that there aren't some things I'd like to discuss about the storylines that I'm building, or the way some of the changes have affected wrestlers, or even how this platform will allow the stories to be pushed towards Wrestlemania.

No, the reason is fairly simple: It means I have to talk about WWE Roadblock. [Read more]

Part Three: The End of the Road

Episode Eighteen

Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman come out to gloat about Roadblock, and how they ended Dean Ambrose and the Wyatt Family. Vengeance served, sayeth the Beast. Now, Jack Swagger.

Paul Heyman says that, if Swagger wants to serve himself up as the sacrifice, fine. Lesnar has earned a walk in the park. He'll take the paycheck, end Swagger's career, and then he'll take back his title. [Read more]

Episode Nineteen

Thursday Night Smackdown opens with The Miz talking about how he wants to challenge Kevin Owens to an Intercontinental Championship title match at Wrestlemania. But first, he has two people he needs to explain a few things to.

With that, he welcomes his two guests to MizTV: AJ Styles, and Sami Zayn. [Read more]

Episode Twenty

For the first time in years, Shane McMahon, Stephanie McMahon, Vince McMahon, and the Undertaker stand together in the ring, though the wariness of all concerned is obvious. Damien Sandow paces at ringside, clearly still hurting from the attack the previous week, but still on both feet. [Read more]

Episode Twenty-One

With just over a week before the Social Outcasts collide with the League of Nations on the Grandest Stage of Them All, Curtis Axel looks to regain a little momentum against the Bulgarian Brute, Rusev.

The only problem is that Rusev is an unstoppable monster. [Read more]

Episode Twenty-Two

Four wrestlers. One championship. A lot of history.

With Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn barely able to keep from attacking each other long enough to make a tag, AJ Styles and Dolph Ziggler take advantage, working relatively well together to use Kevin Owens' refusal to tag his partner against them, driving Zayn into their corner and keeping him trapped there; Owens, watching from the turnbuckle, seemingly struggles, stopping himself from shouting out several times. But his pacing becomes more frustrated. [Read more]

Episode Twenty-Three

With a large percentage of the roster resting in preparation for Wrestlemania, attention turns to the Andre the Giant Battle Royal, and attempts to qualify for the event by those on the cusp of the card.

In the first of these matches, the Lone Wolf Baron Corbin takes on one half of the Hype Bros in Mojo Rawley. Rawley gets in the face of Corbin early, daring him to try and take him down.

Unfortunately for Rawley, that is exactly what Corbin does. [Read more]

Wrestlemania Preview

After four months of development and writing, we are finally at the end of the road. Wrestlemania. The culmination of more than twenty storylines, countless twists and turns, and more than a few "WHY?!" moments.

But before we get to the episodes themselves, a challenge is necessary. A prediction challenge, to be precise. [Read more]

Episode Twenty-Four

The early goings of the match are fairly even, as more time is spent taunting their opponent than wrestling, with a few rough shots thrown in. Miz uses Jericho's showboating to loosen the straps of the turnbuckle pads, but the referee catches him doing it; though while the referee is fixing them, Miz hits Jericho with a microphone. [Read more]

Episode Twenty-Five

With no obvious favourite heading into the ladder match, Jey and Jimmy Uso, Fandango, Tyler Breeze, Stardust, Kalisto, and Sin Cara throw themselves into the fray, scrambling for a ladder and the space to climb it. The Usos work in tandem, taking down their opponents before throwing themselves over the ropes into a crowd of wrestlers. Kalisto flies high, crashing down onto the fallen wrestlers. [Read more]

Episode Twenty-Six

Enzo and Cass lead a raucous crowd as they prepare for their championship match, ripping a cutting promo about the stagnant state of the division, declaring that it would be revitalised, starting tonight. [Read more]

Episode Twenty-Seven

Becky Lynch and Sasha Banks work together in the early stages of the match, looking to remove Charlotte from contention. The champion is forced to retreat outside the ring, giving Banks and Lynch an opportunity to fight one on one. Banks dominates initially, until a returning Charlotte breaks her momentum, allowing Lynch to hit Bexplexes on both opponents. [Read more]

RtWR 2016: Summary

It's all come to an end. Did it end how you thought it would? Or did you get worked... [Read more]