Jake Roberts Talks Paul Bearer’s Influence On The Undertaker’s Character

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On the most recent episode of the DDP Snake Pit podcast (from AdFreeShows), Jake “The Snake” Roberts had glowing compliments for the late Percy Pringle, better known to wrestling fans as Paul Bearer, on an episode focused on The Undertaker.

Guest host Jon Alba asked Roberts – solo this week without usual partner “Diamond” Dallas Page – his thoughts on the pairing of Bearer and The Undertaker. He said “excellent” mainly because, “Not at any time did Paul Bearer exceed his protégé,” (9:30) adding that Bearer always made sure The Undertaker was the focus.

Roberts then went on to decry overactive managers. He said some managers try to steal the show by what they do outside of the ring. “Jumping up and down or antagonizing some fan or constantly reaching into the ring and grabbing somebody’s leg, if you do that all the time it’s just b******t” (9:55).

Roberts then began to explain how Bearer’s managerial skills helped put over The Undertaker as a character. He noted that Bearer would always go back to his spot and that would signal to the fans that he had confidence in The Undertaker. Roberts added that Bearer’s presence signaled he had no worries about the outcome of the match and that nobody could beat The Undertaker.

Roberts said during the time the two were a tag team, Bearer would always “stay in the background, out of camera view” (11:08) so that the two wrestlers would have the spotlight. He gave effusive praise to Bearer for how he handled Roberts’ character, selling the snake even though they were tag team partners.

Roberts also gave Mark Calaway a lot of credit for The Undertaker’s in-ring success. Roberts said, “It was tremendously hard to work that gimmick. You’d think it would be easy, but it wasn’t, to do it right” (13:40). He noted Calaway did the gimmick right even through the no-sells and fans always anticipating the sit up during his matches

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