Remember when Richard Nixon died and all anybody would talk about is reopened relations with China? Or when Scott Weiland died and everyone suddenly talked as if they had listened to Stone Temple Pilots on purpose at any point during the last 15 years? When Charles Manson dies, we bet all anyone will want to talk about is his underrated career as a folk rock musician.
And y'know - maybe that's the way it should be. Maybe it's important to reflect on the positive aspects of people's lives in the days immediately following their deaths. For that matter, Charles Manson actually was a pretty great songwriter and would've wound up recognized for it eventually if he hadn't gone and done all that bad stuff that he's known for instead.
Anyway, that brings us to how WWE handled the 2014 death of The Ultimate Warrior. The timing was, of course, downright spooky. Conspiracy theorists wonder if Warrior didn't know he was on his way off the mortal coil and reconciled with WWE just in time to give a Hall of Fame speech and beat The Grim Reaper to his own proverbial finish line. He was even fixating on his own death while ostensibly advertising a WWE video game.
However, while admitting they hadn't always seen eye-to-eye with Warrior about everything, WWE executives pretty much brushed the many, many controversies surrounding their onetime golden boy under the rug in the weeks following his untimely passing. And that was the correct move to make. But it's been a year-and-a-half since then and we're free to point out some of Warrior's lesser qualities without feeling like jerks for disparaging someone who just died.
It is no longer too soon.
Thus, here we're examining the insane, unpleasant sides of Warrior the human being, as opposed to Ultimate Warrior the character. For many who dealt with him outside of the ring, without the facepaint, it was like being trampled by a herd of elephants and being run over with lawnmowers. Sometimes it was horrifying. Other times it was funny! For instance, this one time.....
15 Andre The Giant Punched Warrior In The Face
14 Rick Rude Also Punched Warrior In The Face
13 Linda Hogan Said Warrior Was Gay
12 Warrior Chickened Out of a Shootfight With Kevin Nash
11 Warrior Refused to Appear On Byte This
10 Warrior Pooped On Davey Boy Smith and Bruce Hart’s Ex-Wife
9 Warrior Also Pooped on Heath Ledger
Heath Ledger left us with the greatest live action portrayal of the most iconic comic book villain in history, broke new ground with mainstream depictions of homosexuality in Brokeback Mountain, plus A Knight’s Tale was kind of an okay movie! As recounted by Sabotage Times, Warrior wrote that it was good Heath Ledger died, because Warrior hated drugs. “I do have to agree that he was a great father,” wrote Warrior. “After all, Leather Hedger did what it took to kill himself. His kid is without a father, yes, but the negative influence is now removed and his own child has the chance for a full recovery.”
8 Warrior, One-Man Poop Factory, Couldn't Hold It In For Katrina Victims, Either
But if there’s one thing Warrior hated more than the drugs he didn’t get to do himself, it was soggy poor people. Especially if they wore clothes similar to those rap stars might wear. He also hated the scientifically demonstrated link between poverty and obesity, so much so he ignored its existence. He also hated expensive sneakers, for some reason.
“Have you ever seen so many fat people?” wrote Warrior, of the tens of thousands of individuals whose city had essentially just been destroyed by Hurricane Katrina. “Poverty of what? Having enough to buy so much food to eat that you become obese?.....Designer clothes made by rap stars? $200 Nikes? Free medicine and free health care?....What the hell, then, do we call the scenes they shoot out of Africa that they use to lay guilt trips down on all of us?”
7 One Time, Warrior Got Paid $500,000 For Maybe Five Minutes Worth of Work
For a while, it was widely believed Warrior demanded a substantial payday in exchange for showing up to SummerSlam ‘91, the same weekend of the show. In fact, he had sent the demand for payment - which he claimed was owed to him for WrestleMania VII - seven weeks prior to SummerSlam.
If we conclude that Warrior had already been paid for WrestleMania, this means he essentially held WWE up for a roundabout SummerSlam bonus. At Summerslam, he was booked to spend about two minutes chasing Col. Mustafa out of the arena while Hogan and Sgt. Slaughter had a singles match.
6 Vince Tried To Hire Warrior Back More Times Than He Wants To Admit
5 Warrior Was Basically a Walking, Accidental Parody of The Right Wing
Okay - So Warrior’s politics.
Contrary to what some people will tell you, Warrior was a great promo. He had tremendous stage presence. But absolutely no one has or ever will make the case that he was a great wrestler. In fact, it’s not inaccurate to say he was an outright mediocre to below-average wrestler who never had a good match without an opponent doing most of the work for him.
Warrior’s outlook on economics - typical of right-leaning thinkers - assumes that society is or should be a meritocracy, wherein an individual accumulates wealth in accordance with the quality and quantity of their contributions. But Warrior himself was living proof that society is not a meritocracy. Warrior became a millionaire even though he was objectively bad at his job, and didn’t even do it for very long.
4 Warrior Did A Bizarre Shoot On Hulk Hogan That Might’ve Been Accurate
3 Warrior Made Out With Orlando Jordan
2 Warrior Really Disappointed A Lot of People
Y’know, let’s say, hypothetically, you grew up as a big Ultimate Warrior fan. You proudly wore a little birthday party-quality version of his facepaint, ran around the house body slamming your Ultimate Warrior Wrestling Buddy doll, and you have fond memories of attending a live show where the Warrior actually arrived as advertised and performed. That whole sentimental, nostalgic shebang is what you've got.
Then you got a little older and realized you were into different things than your classmates. Coming out was a struggle, as it often is for individuals of your persuasion, but you eventually found yourself a relatively well-adjusted adult despite the roadblocks society placed in your way due to a sexual orientation you didn’t pick.
1 Warrior Ignored A Dying Warrior Superfan
In his autobiography - My Real Life In the Cartoon World of Pro Wrestling - Bret Hart tells a ruthlessly damning anecdote regarding Warrior’s empathy for his fans or staggering lackthereof.
According to The Hitman, a young fan “in his last few hours” had been sent via Make-A-Wish to meet Warrior during a house show in Omaha, Nebraska. Hart observed the boy - on a stretcher in full faux-Warrior regalia, accompanied by his parents - waiting by Warrior’s locker room through much of the night while Warrior stalled on showing his face. Later, Hart noticed the trio had left and assumed the meeting had transpired as planned.
Then, he discovered the family had merely been moved outside so as not to distract Warrior from his pre-match ritual of running and yelling. And they never even got their stupid meet-and-greet.
“As we rounded a corner down a backstage ramp, we came upon the boy and his weary family, who had been moved there so as not to get in the way of Warrior’s entrance," writes The Hitman. "I thought, 'That lousy piece of s@#$.'”
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