The storylines in wrestling are what keep the audience’s mind attracted to the product, as a well build feud with a compelling backstory can make wonders for the wrestlers, as well as intriguing the fans to actually sit through the whole feud. If a wrestling character or feuds don’t have the proper story put on to it, the “entertainment” part of it is diminished and only the technicality of the wrestling goes into the product. So the creative has to come up with the best of storylines built with proper backstories for the wrestlers and is crucial for creating some iconic characters as well as iconic matches as well for the promotion.
The Attitude Era in the WWE probably have some of the most intriguing and entertaining storylines in the history of the company, as the creation of so many characters and pitting them against each other as well as coming up with some unique antics helped WWE win the Monday Night War against WCW. Be it coming up with iconic stables like D-Generation X or The Ministry of Darkness or The Corporation, the creative unearthed some amazing storylines which not only entertained the fans, but brought a sense of intrigue and anticipation to tune into the product week in, week out. The people in creative are responsible for digging out new storylines for the product each week, as the demanding fans seem to grow tired of anything which is dragged for a month or above.
But while the WWE has brought the viewers with some amazing storytelling, there’s always a bad to a good as some very horrible stories also came into existence in the product. We’ve seen disgusting stuff like the Katie Vick angle or a character like Boogeyman appear in the WWE, and it’s probably more shocking to realize that there were worse storylines which were pitched to Vince McMahon. Thankfully these storylines never came into existence and were changed at the last moment, as most of them could’ve ruined the stable shape of the company.
15 Ken Shamrock’s Love Angle With Sister Ryan
Ken Shamrock is remembered by many as the dangerous MMA wrestler who terrorized many in his short years for the WWE. Shamrock was billed as “The World’s Most Dangerous Man” upon his debut in the WWE, and went on to dominate many wrestlers with his impressive MMA style of wrestling as well as his brutal, hard-hitting style. The King of The Ring winner was also once given a terrible storyline by Mr. McMahon to “strengthen” his popularity. After Ken stopped working as a henchman for Mr. McMahon, he went his own way and was accompanied by his on-screen sister Ryan Shamrock, a girl who many other wrestlers tried to hit it off with. Ken was actually dating Ryan (actual name Alicia Webb) in real life wen Vince McMahon pitched an idea where the siblings would be revealed as lovers. The incest angle was pathetic and Ken immediately went to Vince McMahon and declined to work on such an idea, indicating that it would be a bad example for his little children. McMahon was apparently upset over this, but Ken was absolutely right on declining this idea which would’ve tarnished his image in the company.
14 New Jack “Stabbing” John Cena
John Cena is definitely one of the toughest and hard-working superstars in the WWE for the past decade, as he has maintained his passion for the company in spite of gaining immense popularity. Cena has gone through his share of extreme matches, mostly in his early days in the company where he competed in many hard-core matches and shed quite a lot of blood for the company. But if he had to go against a madman like ECW alumni New Jack, even Superman Cena would probably back out of this fight. During Cena’s feud with Carlito over the US Title in 2004, Cena was shown to be “stabbed” by Carlito’s bodyguard, Jesus. He wasn’t really stabbed, but this was used to increase the intensity in their feud. So apparently New Jack came to WWE later on with an idea revealing himself as the one to have stabbed Cena, exempting Carlito and Jesus and potentially making for a feud between himself and Cena. Many superstars apparently threatened to walk out of the company if they hired New Jack, and the idea was instantly declined by Mr. McMahon as Carlito and Cena went on to have a compelling feud.
13 Booker T Being Stalked by Goldust
Booker T has had to deal with a lot of stuff since coming into the WWE, from being tagged alongside Goldust to being involved in a hideous feud with the Boogeyman, but a storyline for him being stalked is probably at the top of the list. Booker T and Goldust were a quirky but entertaining tag-team in 2002, as Booker went on to tag with the bizarre one himself for a couple of months during which they even won the World Tag Team Titles. But after a short reign, they decided to break-up and go their own ways as Goldust started to get weird shock attacks and more eccentric after it. So a year later in 2003, Booker was talking to Jon Heidenreich in a segment when he discovered a note which said “I Still Remember”. Speculation began on someone stalking Booker T, with Goldust being predicted by many to be doing this because of him being Goldust. But this was obviously discarded as this segment was never mentioned again after this, and Goldust was soon released by the company.
12 Muhammad Hassan To Win The World Championship
Muhammad Hassan’s character was probably one of the most controversial ones in the WWE’s history, as this Muslim who was pro-Islam and even indicated being pro-terrorism garnered incredible heat from the crowd. Hassan would become one of the top heels of the company for a while, wrestling with the best of Smackdown! and was pitched for greater things. Hassan was actually pitched to win the World Heavyweight Championship from Batista at the 2005 Great American Bash, as reveled by his friend and on-screen manager Daivari. But a controversial segment on Smackdown! when Hassan started “praying” after a match between Daivari and The Undertaker, as five men dressed in black beat down the Deadman and carried him off to the back was received with incredible backlash, as it indicated terrorism. Hassan suffered from this, as he went on to lose a match against The Undertaker and would soon be released by the company who wanted nothing to do with his controversial character as the poor man was a victim of backstage politics in the company.
11 The Plans for Imposter Kane
Remember Imposter Kane? Yeah the mimicked gimmick of the masked Kane being portrayed by Luke Gallows. There were actually a lot of plans for this “imposter” Kane as the real Kane (Glenn Jacobs) was contemplating retirement about that time. So in 2005, Kane started to hear some mystical voices during some of his matches and in one segment an imposter Kane wearing his older attire and mask came and choke-slammed the real Kane in a match against Shelton Benjamin. This continued to a match at Vengeance when the real Kane defeated his imposter, and later on went to reclaim his mask. The original plans for Imposter Kane was to have him become the real Kane, as the one Glenn Jacobs was portraying was to be revealed as someone who had imprisoned the real one and stolen his identity. This storyline was discarded because fans thought it to be too confusing (which it was) as Jacobs decided to stay in the company and serve well as the Big Red Machine.
10 The Driver Who Ran Over Stone Cold
So in 1999, Stone Cold Steve Austin who was at the peak of his popularity at the time, needed some-time off in order to have a neck surgery and then rehabilitation on it. There had to be some method to get him off TV for a couple of months, so the WWE went with the story where Stone Cold would be run over by a car, leaving Steve laid out for months recuperating from injuries. After coming back, Austin would try to look for who had run him over, with Rikishi revealing that it was him who did it and “he did it for The Rock”. The original plan pitched to this was the Driver to be Austin’s wife at the time, Debra. Debra wasn’t that popular at the time and this would be something which escalated her to a vicious heel, possibly siding with Austin’s nemesis. But the idea was almost instantly declined by both Debra and Austin, as Austin didn’t like the idea of his wife trying to murder him.
9 Christopher Daniels Was Supposed To Be In The Brood
Many might know Christopher Daniels as one of the most prominent guys in the successful era of TNA, with his feud with good friend AJ Styles making them both very popular. A certified king of the independent circuit, not many might remember Daniels’ time at the WWE or even him being in the company in the first place. He was mostly used as a jobber in the company in its B-shows like Sunday Night Heat and never really prominently made it in the company. But Daniels was originally pitched to be a member of the “The Brood”, the vampire themed stable who rose in popularity in the Attitude Era. Gangrel revealed in an interview that Daniels was originally planned to be a member of the villainous stable, but Edge got Christian in the stable, leaving Daniels to go back to jobbing and leaving the company in 2001. If we are to imagine, a lot of things could’ve changed for Daniels had he been in the Brood as he could’ve become a mainstay in the company for the long run if he excelled in the faction.
8 Goldust Wanted Breast Implants for his Character
Ever since the Goldust character debuted in the WWE in 1995, everyone has been mystified by the absolute bizarre antics of the character. Dustin Runnels (the son of Dusty Rhodes) has been so compelling with his portrayal of the character that he legitimately starts to feel uncomfortable after a point of time. So one could only imagine the crazy plots which were pitched in the open Attitude Era where Vince McMahon jumped quite a lot of boundaries to get better ratings than WCW. So Goldust in order to get more relevant in the competitive era pitched in an idea where he would be getting breast implants and it would be filmed to be showcased in a RAW event. Some had doubted the character’s sexuality at first even though many were sure of it being a man, and Goldust wanted to add a bit more of that bizarreness to his character by pulling this stunt. It was even apparently approved by some of the writers, but they decided to nix it in the end and not go on with this grotesque move. As If Goldust wasn’t already this discomforting, watching him getting breast implants and appear with boobs would be an utter nightmare for everyone.
7 Mr. Kennedy as the Illegitimate Child of Mr. McMahon
Mr. McMahon has had a lot of storylines based on and around himself after establishing himself as this dictatorial heel in the WWE after the Montreal Screwjob, with so many angles being played with his character in focus. One of these storylines was when in 2007, it was discovered that McMahon had an illegitimate son with another woman while being married to Linda McMahon. It was all played out in the course of some weeks, with the son being revealed to be part of the WWE roster and on one Raw, the “lawyer” decided to finally reveal who it was. So after minutes of anticipation, it was revealed to be the leprechaun Hornswoggle who McMahon could never appreciate as his “son” and tortured in the following weeks. What most people might not know is that Mr. Kennedy was pitched to be his son. Kennedy was supposed to get a major push as part of him being McMahon’s son, but Kennedy violated WWE’s wellness policy and got a 30 day suspension just as the idea was unravelling. So it went on to Hornswoggle and Kennedy’s WWE career got worse by each year, finally making for a bitter ending when he left in 2009.
6 Lex Luger Winning the WWE Title at WrestleMania X
After Hulk Hogan left the WWE, the company needed someone to portray the All-American Patriot which everyone loved Hogan for. So Vince McMahon hand-picked the muscular Lex Luger for it, and it didn’t go so well to say the least. Luger got a huge push ahead of more talented stars like Bret Hart and Shawn Michaels, as McMahon pushed him over to roof to try and make him become the top guy of the company. McMahon wanted Luger to go over at WrestleMania 10, where he was originally booked to win the WWE Title from Yokozuna and then lose it to Bret Hart later on. But Luger apparently got drunk at a New York bar the night before WrestleMania and a New York newspaper covered the incident as a reporter got to know what will happen and revealed it in the article. So McMahon decided to punish Luger for it, as he went on to lose the match via DQ as Bret would go on to win the title from Yokozuna in the main event, leaving Luger to lament on his mistakes.
5 Mr. McMahon’s “Death”
With all the stunts WWE have pulled so far, Mr. McMahon’s death was probably the most shocking at the time, even if it lasted for only a week because of the Benoit tragedy. In 2007 in an episode of Raw, Mr. McMahon entered his limousine which blew up in flames leaving everyone shocked with what happened. Originally, there was to be a 3-hour funeral episode for the Chairman’s death the next week. Later on it would be revealed that Linda McMahon orchestrated his death and Mr. Kennedy would be revealed as his illegitimate son and try to inherit the company. That would lead to a feud between Kennedy and Shane & Stephanie for who will control the company, with the conclusion happening at WrestleMania 24 where Vince would return alongside Kennedy. While it’s quite remarkable to even believe this sort of a deep storyline was in place, one could expect this sort of stuff out of Vince McMahon’s eccentric head in order to get his product to the top, as we’re to imagine what could’ve been had that Benoit tragedy not occurred.
4 Snitsky and Heidenreich Breaking the Streak
The Undertaker’s WrestleMania streak is a legacy in itself and before Brock Lesnar ended it at WrestleMania 30, the thought of ending it was starting to turn into a myth. Even the mightiest of wrestlers couldn’t seem to put down the Deadman at the grandest stage of them all, as the streak which something which Vince himself didn’t want to end. But in 2005, there was a storyline pitched where the team of the sadistic Snitsky and Heidenreich would end the streak in a tag team matches against the Brothers of Destruction. Snitsky and Heidenreich were feuding with the respective brothers at the time, and this was pitched to elevate into the top heels of the respective WWE brands. But when Kane got injured, this idea was nixed and Randy Orton was given the opportunity to end the streak as part of his “Legend Killer” gimmick by Taker himself, but he declined it out of respect. It could be interesting to think off Undertaker’s streak being defeated in a tag team match, but not many would’ve liked someone like Snitsky and Heidenreich to do it.
3 Chyna as the First Female WWE Champion
The late, great Chyna might have made some bad personal decisions in her life, but she was definitely the “Ninth Wonder of the World” when it came to wrestling. Chyna was definitely the most dominating and influential female wrestler in the company’s history, and Vince McMahon wanted to do something historic with her character. Chyna was actually pitched to become the first ever female WWE Champion at SummerSlam 1999, where she was to defeat Stone Cold Steve Austin for the title. If one’s to track the build-up to SummerSlam 1999, we can see that she actually gets a huge victory on Raw which could’ve allotted her right into the title picture and a match against Austin seeming a possibility. But with SummerSlam closing in, this idea was nixed by the company who got cold feet on such a possibility happening and discarded it as “Chyna not having enough in-ring skills” as Mankind went on to win the WWE title in the event. The thought of a female WWE Champion probably won’t appear anytime soon, but if some was to become one, it was definitely Chyna.
2 The Undertaker to Debut as The Gobbledy Gooker
The Undertaker’s character is one of “THE” legendary ones in the history of wrestling, as the Deadman has been terrorizing wrestlers with his terrifying, mystical gimmick ever since his debut. His Deadman gimmick is what made him this famous, and his showcase of this gimmick is what cemented him as such a legendary wrestler for the company, as one could imagine what it would’ve been like if he wasn’t given this gimmick in the first place. Originally at first, WWE was confused as to what gimmick it would give to Taker, and even planned to initially debut him as The Gobbledy Gooker, where he’d have to wear a chicken costume. Thankfully this was swiftly dismissed by the WWE creative team who later on thought on giving him a Viking gimmick, but went ahead with The Deadman gimmick at Survivor Series 1990. Thankfully the creative weren’t that stupid to actually make someone as intimidating as The Deadman wear a chicken costume and wrestle as “The Gobbledy Gooker”, as we probably can’t imagine the WWE without the terrorizing figure of The Phenom.
1 Batista Assault Storyline
Batista is probably one of the most devastating, hard-hitting wrestlers of his time with his “Animal” gimmick making him seem like a strong contender no-one would like to mess with. His character was on the rise in 2006 as he just came off a promising World Heavyweight Title and tagged with Rey Mysterio to try and win the Tag Titles from MNM. So in a plot for Batista and Mysterio to call off their match to MNM, Melina would call Batista to the locker room to “seduce him”. The storyline had the two have sex, after which Batista simply said “Thank You” and went on to win the match with Mysterio. Melina would hold a press conference in the next Smackdown where she would accuse Batista off “Sexually Harassing” her as Batista would be seen as being interviewed by the press on the accusation. But the storyline was soon dropped as Batista would get injured at a house show, and probably for the better as Batista wouldn’t want a rapist tag to his resume (even if it’s in WWE) as that would hamper his progress as a no-nonsense, destructive beast.