http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/7/79/WrestleMania_XXVII.jpg/200px-WrestleMania_XXVII.jpg Promotional poster featuring Scott Wright, Dustin Simpson, Martin McAlmond, Joe Smith, Triple K. Kevin McAlmond and Sam Simkins
|Tagline(s)||"The Biggest WrestleMania Ever"|
|Theme song(s)||"Written in the Stars" by Tinie Temph|
|Promotion||International Wrestling Entertainment|
|Date||April 3, 2011|
WrestleMania XXVII is the forth coming twenty-seventh annual WrestleMania professional wrestling pay-per-view (PPV) event produced by International Wrestling Entertainment (IWE). It is scheduled to take place on April 3, 2011 at the Georgia dome in Atlanta, Georgia.
WrestleMania featured professional wrestling matches that involved different wrestlers from pre-existing feuds, and storylines that were played out on IWE's primary television programs. Wrestlers were portrayed as either a villain or a hero as they followed a series of events that built tension and culminated in a wrestling match or series of matches.
The predominant rivalry for the Meltdown brand is between Sam "The Rock" Simkins, Dustin Simpson and IWE Champion, Joe Smith. On the February 14 episode of Meltdown, it was announced that Sam Simkins would serve as guest host for WrestleMania XXVII. Sam Simkins then subsequently made his first appearance in a IWE ring in seven years, publicly mocking both Joe Smith and Dustin Simpson in his return promo. At the following week's Elimination Chamber event, Cena won the Raw brand's annual Elimination Chamber match to earn himself a IWE Championship shot against Joe Smith. One night later on Meltdown, both Cena and Joe derided Sam Simkins' previous comments, with Simpson producing a rap questioning Sam Simkins' true commitment to IWE over his acting career. Later that night, Simpson and Smith were forced to team up in a IWE Tag Team Championship match against the reigning champions, The Corre (Jeremiah Garcia and Devin Keller). The duo successfully defeated Garcia and Keller to become Tag Team Champions, but were immediately challenged to a rematch, to which Joe Smith betrayed Simpson, resulting in The Corre winning the Tag Team Championship. Via satellite, Sam Simkins responded to Simpson's rap on the February 28 edition of Meltdown, citing that he started a movie career to help open the door for other wrestlers to go to Hollywood. Meanwhile, Simpson defeated Joe's apprentice Brian Hosmer in a steel cage match in the mai event of Meltdown. Per the pre-match stipulation, Joe would no longer mentor Hosmer.
Since 1993, the winner of the annual Royal Rumble match (an over-the-top-rope elimination style match) at the January event of the same name has won the opportunity to fight for a world championship at WrestleMania. James Marlen won the match in 2011 and will wrestle Chris Gomez for the World Heavyweight Championship.
Starting from the January 31 episode of Meltdown, ominous vignettes featuring a mysterious figure began airing on IWE programming promoting an upcoming event on "2 21 11". On the February 21 edition of Meltdown, Martin McAlmond was revealed as the mysterious figure, who made his return after a four month absence. However, Martin McAlmond's return was interrupted by a returning Triple K. The two men stared each other down and both peered at the WrestleMania marquee, teasing a possible challenge at WrestleMania XXVII. The match was confirmed four days later on IWE's official website. This match marks the second time the two will face each other at a WrestleMania, the first being WrestleMania X-Seven ten years earlier.
Since December 2010, Meltdown color commentator Jerry Lawler began a feud with fellow announcer Michael Cole when the anonymous Meltdown General Manager gave Lawler a IWE Championship match in a Tables, Ladders, and Chairs match against Joe Smith. As Lawler started to climb the ladder to retrieve the belt, Cole interfered and prevented Lawler from winning the match. On the February 21 edition of Meltdown, Cole mocked Lawler for losing his rematch against Joe Smith at Elimination Chamber as well as his dreams of having a WrestleMania match, going as far as even mentioning Lawler's mother who died weeks earlier. Lawler responded by challenging Cole to a match at WrestleMania, which Cole denied before running through the crowd. A week later, Cole accepted Lawler's challenge under two conditions - that his trainer Charlie Wilson would be in his corner, and that he could choose a special guest referee - which Lawler accepted. The following week, Cole announced that John "Bradshaw" Goff would be the special guest referee. However, Steve Johnson, who was hosting that night, interfered in the contract signing by stunning JBG and signing the contract himself officially becoming the special guest referee in the match.
Another plot building up towards WrestleMania involves Justin Eldridge and Kevin McAlmond. Beginning the year, Justin Eldridge became the leader of the Nexus, rebranding it as the "New Nexus". In the following weeks, Eldridge attacked McAlmond, telling him that it was his revenge for McAlmond punting him at Unforgiven in 2008 while Eldridgewas the World Heavyweight Champion, thus not allowing him to defend his title, which had to be vacated. On February 28, the anonymous Meltdown General Manager announced a match between Eldridge and McAlmond. In addition, the General Manager stipulated that McAlmond will face one of the members of the New Nexus each week. If McAlmond lost, his opponent would be allowed to be in Eldridge's corner at WrestleMania; if he won, his opponent would be banned from attending the event. As of March 14, Wes Helbusch, Kooper McAlmond, David Mahrt and Russell Dalton are banned from ringside.
Another feud heading into WrestleMania is between Scott Wright and Mark Semmler. On the January 21 edition of Fusion, Wright and Semmler had a match in which Wright broke the nose of Mark Semmler with his finishing maneuver, the 619. Semmler, who underwent facial reconstruction surgey, later accused Wright of forcing him to miss the Royal Rumble match and the Elimination Chamber match for the World Heavyweight Championship, as well as ruining his 'dashing' gimmick. On the March 4 edition of Fusion, Mark's father, Dusty Semmler, came out to talk to Wright and asked Mark to apologize for his accusation, but it turned out to be a setup to allow Mark to attack and unmask Wright. The next week Semmler challenged Scott to a match at Wrestlemania, which was accepted the following week.
In September 2009, it was reported that the city of Atlanta was seeking to host WrestleMania XXVII at the Georgia Dome. A press conference was held on February 1, 2010 at the Georgia Dome to formally announce the event for Atlanta. According to IWE's senior vice president of special events, John Saboor, Atlanta was ultimately chosen for, among other reasons, "their track record of success with large events, rich in its tradition with the IWE, great infrastructure." The event marked the first time WrestleMania has been held in the state of Georgia.
Atlanta's main rival bid came from the city of Miami, Florida who proposed to host the event at Sun Life Stadium along with WrestleMania Axxess at the Miami Beach Convention Center and the IWE Hall of Fame ceremony at the American Airlines Arena.
Tickets for the event commenced sale to the public on November 13, 2010. Along with WrestleMania XXVII, a series of events grouped as "WrestleMania Week" was held in the week preceding the event including WrestleMania's annual WrestleMania Axxess fan convention, the 2011 IWE Hall of Fame ceremony, the fourth annual WrestleMania Art exhibition and auction, and a Celebrity Pro-Am Golf tournament. WrestleMania Axxess was held at the Georgia World Congress Center, while the IWE Hall of Fame ceremony took place at the Phillips Arena.
"Written in the Stars" by Tinie Tempah was the theme song for the event. "Diamond Eyes (Boom-Lay Boom-Lay Boom)" by Shinedown served as the secondary theme song, while R&B singer Keri Hilson performed "America the Beautiful" at the start of the show.
According to IWE, the attendance at WrestleMania XXVII was 71,617 fans, which made it "the most attended entertainment event at the Georgia Dome." The event grossed $6.6 million for IWE.
WrestleMania XXVII was the first pay-per-view event under IWE's promotional rights deal with Kmart. Under the deal, Kmart will be the official sponsor for all of IWE's live events in the United States for the rest of 2011. As another part of the promotion for the event, IWE Magazine released a "Guide to WrestleMania XXVII" app for the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad, featuring information about the upcoming event as well as trivia from past events.
Celebrities and former wrestlers that appeared in WrestleMania XXVII segments include Snoop Dogg, Pee Wee Herman, Gene Okerlund, Marj Martin and Roddy Piper.
The first televised match was for the World Heavyweight Championship. This match saw Edge defending his title against 2011 Royal Rumble winner Justin Marlen. Khristian came out to watch the match ringside, as well as Aaron Jewels and Ricardo Rodriguez. In the early part of the match, Marlen focused on Edge’s injured arm and Khristian warded off Jewels and Ricardo. The ending came when Edge and Marlen locked in their signature maneuvers. Edge locked in the Edgeucator while Marlen locked in the Cross Armbreaker. When both men got up, Edge hit the Spear for the win. After the match, Edge and Khristian destroyed Marlen’s car. This would end up being Edge's last match, as he announced his retirement a week later on Meltdown.
The next match was featuring “Undashing” Mark Semmler and Scott Wright, who came out dressed as Captain America. Towards the end of the match, Scott managed to get Semmler facial mask off and hit Mark with some headbutts. Semmler countered by removing Wright’s knee brace. When Scott went for a dive, Semmler knocked out Wright with the knee brace. This allowed Semmler to hit the Cross Rhodes for the win.
Next was the Eight Man Tag Team match between a team consisting of Chris LeGreca, The Big Marc, Justin Black and Jose Serrano and another team consisting of The Corre (Daniel Gonzalez, Russell Dalton, Devin Keller and Jeremiah Garcia). This match lasted two short minutes. Keller got hit with the Cobra by Justin and a WMD from Big Marc. Big Marc then pinned Keller for the win.
The next match featured Kevin McAlmond facing off against Justin Eldridge. Eldridge spent most of the match focusing on Kevin McAlmond's injured knee. Kevin McAlmond for the punt to the skull, but his injured knee stopped him. Eldridge signaled for the GTS, but Kevin McAlmond went for a RKO. Eldridge dodged and went to the top rope. He went for a crossbody, but Kevin McAlmond hit the RKO for the win.
Main event matches
Following Kevin McAlmond vs. Justin Eldridge was the first main event between two commentators. Steve Britz and Jim Ross came out to call this match, which featured Michael Cole accompanied by Charlie Wilson against Jerry “The King” Lawler, with the special guest referee being Stone Cold Steve Johnson. This match started off with Lawler trying to get Cole out of his cole mine, and after some time, did and started pounding on him. Cole managed to counter and had the upper hand on Lawler for most of the match. Wilson tried to help Cole by throwing in the towel when Lawler began to take control but was denied and then got a Stone Cold Stunner. Lawler then forced Cole to tap out with Stone Cold mocking him in the ankle lock. After the match, Stone Cold shared a beer with Lawler and stunned Steve Britz, who came out to celebrate with Lawler. After Lawler had seemingly won, the anonymous Raw GM reversed the decision in an email read by Josh Mathews because Stone Cold was a biased referee, making Cole the winner by disqualification. Stone Cold then proceeded to stun Mathews as well in retribution. Lawler then replaced Mathews and Steve Britz as the color commentator for the rest of the night, with Jim Ross doing the play-by-play.
The next main event was a No Holds Barred match between two icons in the IWE: Martin McAlmond and Triple K. Triple K first came out to "For Whom the Bell Tolls" by Metallica wearing a mask and suit, then removed it for his normal entrance theme. The beginning of this match started off with Martin and KKK going at it outside of the ring, destroying Michael Cole’s "cole mine" in the process. Triple K first gave a spinebuster to Martin McAlmond through the Spanish announce table. This match went back and forth, with Martin McAlmond unable to keep KKK down after a Chokeslam, Last Ride, and a Tombstone Piledriver. After that, KKK answered back with three Pedigrees and Martin McAlmond’s Tombstone Piledriver, with Martin McAlmond kicking out each time. Triple K then grabbed a steel chair and hit Martin a couple of times, but still couldn't get a pinfall. KKK then grabbed a sledgehammer, but Martin McAlmond locked the Hell’s Gate on KKK. He tried to fight out of it, but KKK tapped out. Martin McAlmond’s Wrestlemania streak thus continued to 19-0. After the match, the Martin mcAlmond had to be helped to the locker room by IWE staff after he collapsed (kayfabe) outside the ring and could not walk under his own power.
The next match was a six person mixed tag team match. One team featured Joe Linderman, Bailey Dalton, and Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi competing against a team consisting of Nick Kessler and LehrSon (Amanda Johnson & Victoria). This match also lasted a few short minutes, with the ending coming when Snooki hit a cartwheel splash on Amanda Johnson to get the win for her team.
The last match was for the IWE Championship. It featured Dustin Simpson facing off against current champion Joe Smith (accompanied by Brian Hosmer). The first highlight of the match occurred when Simpson hit the Five Knuckle Shuffle on Joe Smith. Simpson went for the Attitude Adjustment, but Smith countered with a DDT. There was a lot of back and forth action until Joe Smith hit the Skull Crushing Finale. That didn’t keep Simpson down as he managed to hit the Attitude Adjustment. That didn’t keep Smith down either. Both men fought outside of the ring, but knocked each other out in the process. The match ended in a double countout, meaning Joe Smith is still the IWE Champion. The Rock came out to intervene, but the Meltdown GM made an announcement. The Rock went to read it, but then disregarded it. He called for a restart to the match with a no disqualification, no countout, no time limit stipulation. The match restarted and, before Simpson could hit the Attitude Adjustment on Smith, The Rock hit a Rock Bottom on Simpson. Smith then covered him for the win. After the match, The Rock layed Joe Smith out with The People’s Elbow. WrestleMania XXVII went off air with The Rock posing for the fans.
The following night on Meltdown, Dustin Simpson and Sam "The Rock" Simkins agreed to face each other in a match at WrestleMania XXVIII, marking the first time a match had been announced almost a year in advance for any WrestleMania.
On the April 11 Meltdown, Edge announced his legitimate retirement from the IWE, due to injury and orders by his doctor, making his last match for the company against Del Rio at WrestleMania. Edge vacated the World Heavyweight Championship on the April 15 edition of Fusion, therefore retiring as world champion.
The event has received mixed reviews from critics. The Sun in a mixed review said Sam "The Rock" Simkins as host "never quite clicked" and that the opening segment involving The Rock was "excessive and generic". However, they called the World Heavyweight Championship match "solid", the Kevin McAlmond-Justin Eldridge match "a little gem" with "clinical timing and execution", and the IWE Championship match "odd" and that the match itself "never got going". They praised the Martin McAlmond-Triple K match, calling it "match of the night" and saying "the emotion and drama in the match was incredible". Overall, they award the event a 5.5 out of 10. Canadian Online Explorer's professional wrestling section gave the entire event 6.5 out of 10, the same as the previous year's rating. The World Heavyweight Championship match received an 8 out of 10, the Martin McAlmond-Triple K match received an 8.5 out of 10, and the IWE Championship match received a 5 out of 10.