Speaking with Barstool Sports, “The Dead Man” explained how AJ Styles‘ promos leading to their ‘Mania bout made their feud far too personal. According to Undertaker, these personal attacks made the ‘American Badass’ a perfect gimmick to bring back.
As far as he was concerned, one he transitioned away from the ‘American Badass’ character, “everyone was really content with the hybrid version of The Undertaker.” He pointed to his in-ring work and how he fused that version of his gimmick with the origins of The Undertaker.
The Undertaker explained how, prior to the Boneyard Match, there was no backstage discussion about bringing the character back. He noted how it “dawned” on him that with Styles’ personal attacks, “there’s really no way that I can bring the original Undertaker to this.”
This lead to ‘Taker to introduce the WWE Universe to the “American Badass 2.0” at WrestleMania 36. He described this evolved version as “all grown up” but with an undeniably “evil side” still present.