Will The Undertaker's "Deadman" Persona Ever Return to WWE?

The Undertaker recently returned to WWE television for the Monday Night Raw 30th Anniversary special, but it wasn't in the form fans expected. Instead, Mark Calaway drove down to the ring on a motorcycle in his "American Badass" persona, something not seen on Raw in nearly two decades. "The Phenom" said in his new interview with Ariel Helwani that WWE had his classic black hat and trenchcoat ready for him to make his classic iconic entrance, but noted how he personally turned down the idea as he doesn't believe he'll ever bring "The Deadman" back.

"They had a different vision, They didn't even know that I wasn't going to have the hat and coat. They totally thought I was coming [out as] old Undertaker. I was like, no. That's part of me and the storytelling, right? When I lifted the curtain, and when I lifted it back and pulled it back, that's gone. It's gone now...I won't bring the hat and coat back out, no," Calaway explained (h/t Fightful).

The Undertaker on Struggling With Retirement

Calaway was recently on the Hawk vs. Wolf podcast and discussed his struggles with retirement. After years of struggling to find the match he felt was a fitting career finale (which turned out to be the cinematic Boneyard Match with AJ Styles at WrestleMania 36), he announced his retirement in 2020. He has since repeatedly stated in interviews that he'd love to compete in another match, but feels his body can no longer perform at the level fans are expecting from him. 

"I would be [out there] without any hesitation at all if I thought I could deliver a performance that people expect when they see my name on the card. I would do it, but I know I can't," Calaway said. "It's been a horrible transition. I don't know that I'll ever find a passion like I did for actually being in the ring. I'm doing the one-man show, and I'm enjoying that it's new to me. I can pour myself into it again, but I don't know if I'll ever have that passion that wrestling gave to me. And then again, I watch the product, and I'm like, 'damn, I would have done that differently. Why won't you work!'"