Wrestling fans have an obsession for not only what goes behind the scenes, but who the people really are away from their gimmicks. We love to see heels become actual faces in real-life, it just adds to our intrigue. However, the role of kayfabe still exists, and some wrestlers such as Bray Wyatt are one’s we still can’t get a full read off of. However, on this list, we identify some of the cooler real life personalities you wouldn’t expect and we also shed a light on the not so cool ones, particularly with the fans.
Most of those that are classified as “un-cool”, doesn’t necessarily mean they live boring lives or anything like that, they just fall under that umbrella for their fan experiences throughout the years. Some of the names despise people approaching them at airports, while others just like to meet fans if it involves money.
We also shed a light on the other side of the spectrum taking a look at Superstars that are actually quite chill, despite their usual “heelish” ways on-screen. There wrestlers are not only great with the fans, but also, popular amongst their peers.
Enjoy the article and like always, be sure to share it with a friend. Also, let us know about a cool experience you had in the past with a wrestler. Who did you like, and who were you disappointed with?
15 Cool: Braun Strowman
This one might come as a big surprise, but yes, Braun Strowman can be classified as cool AF outside of his reckless WWE persona. Strowman is very popular amongst his peers taking photos with several of his co-workers in the last couple of years including Charlotte. Most recently, Strowman was a part of a massive “bro” type of photo featuring Matt Hardy, Titus O’Neil and Roman Reigns during the WWE’s Rome, Italy tour. It’s safe to say he’s in with the cool kids.
If that wasn’t enough, Strowman was also a part of Jericho’s New Year’s party, which clearly shows how well liked he is amongst the cast of Superstars. Aside from the bromances with his peers, Braun is said to be one cool dude in real life and a guy who’s very respectful towards his fans, especially the younger generation.
14 Not: Sasha Banks
Sasha Banks herself has admitted to not being a social butterfly when she takes her gear off, and transforms into her real self, Mercedes Kaestner-Varnado. Outside of her character, Sasha really doesn’t like to be bothered and she’s made that quite clear in the past constantly ripping fans for approaching her in public settings. Particularly in airports, Banks has no chill when it comes to fans approaching her.
When it comes to WWE related meet and greets, or any type of organized event, Sasha’s cool AF with the fans but when it comes to real-life, unfortunately she lands on the not so cool side of things given her reckless past which is well documented with some of the most hilarious candid pictures ever taken with the fans. Take a look for yourselves and you’ll she was none too please on more than one occasion!
13 Cool: Alexa Bliss
If you’ve watched Bliss during shoot interviews in where she acts like her real self, you’re well aware she’s nothing like her on-screen character and quite frankly, one cool chick. She likes the regular things in life like chilling out and watching Netflix, now that’s one chill girl. Her character portrayal of Alexa Bliss is actually fueled by things that annoy her from other people. When Bliss hears or sees an annoying situation, she takes some of it and adds it to her character. Genius? We think so, especially judging by her fantastic abilities which have been well documented as of late.
It remains to be seen what the future holds, but based on the fact that she’s only 25, and already a Raw and SmackDown Women’s Champion, the future looks extremely radiant for the diminutive heel.
12 Not: Seth Rollins
Before we begin to rip into Rollins a little bit, we do praise him for the plethora of pictures he’s taken with the fans over the years. Yes, he has complained about fan interactions in the past, but that hasn’t changed the fact that he still does give fans the time of day as he has numerous fan pics online, even if he doesn’t seem the happiest when taking them.
Rollins has admitted, he’s not a fan of fan interaction outside of the ring and despises people approaching him at airports. Unlike most of his peers that reside out of the Florida area, Seth lives back in Davenport, Iowa, a place where he has friends and family close by. Rollins lives a private life away from the spotlight and it appears like he wouldn’t want it any other way.
11 Cool: Renee Young
On-screen, we’ve seen the professional WWE host Renee Young for a couple of years now. But outside of the ring, she’s extremely different and adjusting to such a “clean” role took some time for Renee, who actually aspired to be a comedian at one point. If you’ve caught her on a podcast in the past, you know she’s one cool chick outside of her WWE demeanor.
Along with having a sense of humor, Young is also said to be quite nice with the fans, as she has several pictures in airports with the members of the WWE Universe. In the pictures, Ambrose doesn’t look too pleased, but the Canadian Renee seems to be her usual joyful self. She continues to climb up the WWE ladder with several new gigs, including landing a spot on the WWE’s reality show, Total Divas.
10 Not: Scott Steiner
At the age of 54, it’s hard to believe Scott Steiner is still bad mouthing the WWE today. He’s still making headlines nowadays, for the most part, because of his outrageous remarks. His most recent comments took shots at both Stephanie and Triple H. It seems like some things will never change, oh boy.
Along with his hatred towards the WWE, Steiner isn’t the most pleasant person to meet outside of the ring which makes it kind of laughable considering that’s what he does nowadays, meet the fans at conventions. Steiner is very short with fans, usually not saying much and just signing without even looking at a person. One story also came out that Steiner told the security to “take his money” after meeting a fan and giving the poor guy minimal dialogue. At this point, it’s unreasonable to expect the guy to change.
9 Cool: Dana Brooke
Making the jump from bodybuilder to pro wrestler, Dana Brooke was a homegrown talent of the Performance Center. She came in with nothing but a positive attitude and that helped her climb a top the ladder. Some claim she wasn’t ready for the call up, but it might have been likeability factor that got her to the main roster so soon.
Taking pictures with Superstars like Dolph Ziggler, and showing up to Chris Jericho’s New Year’s party, it seems quite obvious that Dana is well liked. She’s also a professional outside of the ring, taking her training and conditioning very seriously. In terms of fan interaction, Brooke is great with her supporters and probably, one of the very best, keeping a smile throughout her fan interactions.
8 Not: Bubba Dudley
The first thing Bubba Dudley told Vince when he was hired from ECW was that he wasn’t willing to do anything with the fans. McMahon gave Bubba a look and started to laugh telling him, oh you’ll meet the fans alright. Keeping kayfabe alive wasn’t an option with the WWE, and Bubba learned that right off the bat. It was the opposite to his ECW days when he tore the crowds to shreds, so much so that they actually wanted fight him on multiple occasions, yea that bad.
He has an old school mind set similar to JBL. His fan interactions have brought more bad than good, rarely saying much to those that pay his bills. To his credit, Bubba is still in the business nowadays joining ROH after his previous WWE stint.
7 Cool: Kane
Underrated throughout his career, Kane was rarely on top of the mountain but that didn’t take away from his tremendous work ethic. In real life, that stands true as Kane is regarded as one of the coolest people backstage and a joy with the fanbase. Rarely does Kane ever turn down pics and you can see for yourselves online with his various fan pictures from over the years. Heck, he’s in a political career nowadays which just shows how much of a people person he really is.
Along with his political chops, Kane is said to be one of the most brilliant minds behind the scenes, which is quite shocking given his role throughout his two decade long run. If anything, that just makes him even cooler.
6 Not: Hardcore Holly
Joining the WWE full-time in 1994, Hardcore Holly had an old school mindset similar to JBL. Holly had a lengthy stay with the WWE and it would later lead to a career as trainer for the company. According to the stories, Holly wasn’t the coolest in real life, and quite harsh with the upcoming talents. He would constantly bash former WWE star Santino calling him, “the worst wrestler he’d ever seen”, which is a little harsh don’t you think? He was eventually let go by the company after a 15 year run.
His post WWE life really hasn’t helped his cause, during shoot interviews, Holly seems uninterested and quite bitter about his time in the company bashing the likes of Stone Cold Steve Austin claiming he changed and that fame got to him. Bashing Austin certainly gives Holly the “not cool” label on this list.
5 Cool: Charlotte
She plays the role of an arrogant heel on-screen (although it looks like she’s turning face), but off-screen, she’s nothing like that. Fans to approach Charlotte at meet and greets were quite surprised to see how humble and shy she is away from the camera. She’s also great with the younger fans.
Her character has been exposed on several shoot type of interviews and she always comes out looking so genuine and humble for everything she’s received thus far in her career. Along with that, even her voice changes during the shoots, when she speaks like her natural self, Charlotte has more of a laid back and soft type of tone, kind of like a hippie to be quite honest which makes her pretty darn cool.
4 Not: Konnan
Known as the “Mexican Hulk Hogan”, wrestling pundit Dave Meltzer made the claim that Konnan was more popular than Hulk Hogan himself back in his native land of Mexico. It seems like that fame might have got to his head as the former WCW star is quite cut throat when it comes to the fans, and his ego certainly doesn’t help his cause.
Konnan has stated that he has no time for fans in real-life settings and that he’s not afraid to turn down a picture from a supporter. The Mexican claims he can’t be bothered outside of the ring. Along with that, he’s also been very critical of many talents, including John Cena who he apparently despises after only meeting him once. He was cool and all with WCW joining the Wolfpac, but it seems like that coolness didn’t translate to his everyday life as Carlos Santiago Espada Moises.
3 Cool: Stephanie McMahon
She started off as “the girl with the shy smile”, a name given by Mick Foley back in the late 90s. However, today, McMahon is a huge high up in the company serving as the Chief Branding Officer. McMahon has aided the company immensely in growing the product worldwide.
Her other prowess has come on-screen as she continues to serve as one of the most villainous heels of the entire 2000s. What makes it all so unique is the fact that she’s nothing like that in real-life. Instead, Stephanie is said to be very joyful, along with having a big heart, especially when it comes to talent. Val Venis recalls being creatively frustrated back in his day and when nobody was willing to listen, Stephanie was always there trying to help out. That really shows the type of person she really is off-camera. Along with that, we’ve also seen her lighter side with some funny selfies with a number of talents including Rene Young.
2 Not: Kevin Nash & Scott Hall
This one might be hard to swallow, especially for 90s WWE fans that admired the Kliq, but according to various stories, the two aren’t the greatest people to meet in real life. In fairness, Nash does seem like a funny, down to earth dude, but that side of Kevin only seems to take place alongside his peers. When meeting the fans, Nash has been said to be very uninterested, usually making minimal conversation while just waiting for the next fan in line. To his credit, Nash has admitted that he’s money driven when it comes to the world of pro wrestling.
Scott Hall also doesn’t have the best resume either. He’d show up to events completely out of it in the past, which is quite disrespectful considering fans paid money to see him. He’s also no showed on more than one occasion. It’s a sad reality to face, but our beloved Kliq buddies aren’t as cool to fans in real life.
1 Cool: Roman Reigns
We can hear the boos coming through our computer screens, but yes, given the evidence we have to our disposal, Reigns actually seems like a cool dude away from the camera. The WWE has tried their very best to keep the real Roman under wraps, but we finally got a glimpse of the real guy simply known as “Joe” during an episode of Talk Is Jericho.
We hate to say it, but during the interview, Roman came off looking like one cool dude. He told some awesome tales, including the antics of the “back of the bus brothers” which featured himself, The Usos and at times, Chris Jericho. The group would sit at the back of the tour bus, pound down some alcohol and tell countless stories (admit you wish you were there). Along with that, Roman was very playful during the interview and he even acknowledged his love for the younger fan base. We’re not saying the Roman character is cool, but the real dude behind it known as “Joe” seems pretty cool AF!