Sure, there are plenty of wrestling gimmicks that were great despite being a bit out there. For one, there’s Kane, a man who at one time fans were supposed to believe could shoot fireballs out of his hands. Of course, we can’t forget about The Undertaker. For anyone who doesn’t remember, there was a time when he had the ability to shoot lightning and such. The thing about these two examples is that no one cared. Despite the fact that The Undertaker and Kane’s gimmicks haven’t always been the easiest to believe, they’ve both been able to make it work for several years. As some could imagine, this isn’t always the case. Sometimes wrestling gimmicks shouldn’t be wrestling gimmicks. Some gimmicks that come to mind include, but certainly are not limited to, G.I. Bro, Seven, Husky Harris and that whole thing with Bret Hart being a cowboy.
Sometimes storylines ideas should just stay in the minds of their creators and spare the world of their sheer and utter stupidity. Sometimes I do stupid things, and I’m sure you’re guilty of doing stupid things too like rubbing the back of your ear with your fingers and then smelling your hand or getting way too drunk at a bar the night the night you found out your girlfriend cheated on you with Prince Charming.
Anyway, this list isn’t just about stupidity. It’s also about randomness, bizarre wrestling characters that didn’t go over well and host embarrassing/unflattering gimmicks. If this interests you, then grab some popcorn, sit back down and get ready to laugh your behind off.
20. Alexa Bliss (The Fairy Gimmick)
Some fans may not remember, but there was a time when current WWE Raw Women’s Champion Alexa Bliss blew glitter and dressed like a fairy. While this gimmick didn’t last long, she managed to defeat Alicia Fox in the first round of an NXT Women’s Championship tournament. Shortly after her in-ring debut, Bliss was injured and had to miss several months of action. Shortly after her return, she formed an alliance with Wesley Blake and her real-life fiance, Buddy Murphy, a guy who probably receives more death threats on social media than Bliss receives creepy marriage proposals from desperate internet stalkers. Anyway, with Bliss managing the duo, Blake managed to win NXT Tag Team Championships. Other than guiding Blake and Murphy to championship gold, She was also involved in a feud with then NXT Women’s Champion, Bayley, where the two faced off against each other in the main event of an episode of NXT at one point. Although Bliss never captured the NXT Women’s Title, she can say that she is the first superstar to hold both the SmackDown Women’s Championship and the Raw Woman’s Championship.
19. Goldust (Seven)
In 1999, during the beginning of WCW’s demise, Dustin Runnels AKA Goldust made his return to the company and he didn’t seem to happy about it. His new gimmick was supposed to be something like a Sting wannabe ripoff called Seven. Leading up to his return, several vignettes were played to promote the new gimmick. However, the gimmick was dropped out of fear that fans would think that Seven was supposed to be a child abductor. Although we never got to see the Seven gimmick in full effect and I’m sure very few people wanted to anyway, fans did get to witness Runnels drop a few pipebombs on what he really thought about the whole shtick. Not long after that, he threatened to make the powers that be, WCW and TNT’s, lives miserable. He ended his promo by stating that they will never forget the name of Dustin Rhodes and shortly after that, he became known as The American Nightmare, well before younger brother Cody began calling himself as such.
18. AJ Styles (An Outsider)
During his final years with TNA Wrestling, AJ Styles found himself caught in the middle of a feud between the Aces & Eights and TNA. For some time, it looked as if Styles turned heel and at one point, he even joined the Aces & Eights. This was short-lived as he turned on them and eventually defeated Bully Ray for the TNA World Heavyweight Title, making him a two-time TNA World Heavyweight Champion in the process. This reign was short-lived and was also the last title that Styles would hold in TNA Wrestling. Despite the then president of TNA, Dixie Carter trying her hardest to bribe Styles to stay, she was unsuccessful in her attempt to keep him to keep him from quitting. Styles was last seen in TNA holding up the TNA World Heavyweight Title and driving off. Since then he has gone on to have a successful wrestling career in both New Japan Pro Wrestling, as well as the WWE, where he is the current WWE Champion.
17. Booker T (G.I. Bro)
When most people think of Booker T, they think of Harlem Heat, his being a five-time WCW Champion and a Hall of Famer. However, there was once a time when Booker T was known as G.I. Bro, leader of the Misfits in Action stable. During WCW’s last days, Booker T, as G.I. Bro, feuded with The New Blood, which was a stable created by Vince Russo and Eric Bischoff. On a more specific note, Booker T feuded with Shawn Stasiak of The New Blood during this time. Perhaps most notably, the two clashed at the Great American Bash in 2000. Not long after this, Booker T became the second African-American wrestler to become champion in WCW when he defeated Jeff Jarrett for the World title at Bash at the Beach. Then shortly after that, on the final episode of Nitro, Booker T unified the WCW United States Title and the World title when he defeated then World Champion, Scott Steiner.
16. The Undertaker (Mean Mark Gimmick)
Although The Undertaker spent most of his career in WWE, he did have a short-lived run with WCW during the late ’80s and early ’90s. During that time he wrestled as “Mean Mark” Callous. The gimmick wasn’t a total failure as he managed to replace an injured Sid Vicious and join a stable called The Skyscrapers with his tag team partner, Dan Spivey. In the year 1990 at WCW’s Great American Bash pay per view, wrestled then-champion Lex Luger for the NWA United States Heavyweight Title in a losing effort. Shortly after that, The Undertaker made his WWE debut at Survivor Series on November 22, 1990. A year later at Survivor Series, The Undertaker defeated then WWE Champion, Hulk Hogan to win his first WWE Championship. This made The Undertaker the youngest wrestler to win WWE Title at that point. The title reign was short-lived, as he lost it back to Hogan at This Tuesday in Texas.
15. Sgt. Slaughter (Iraqi Sympathizer)
Although Sgt. Slaughter is well known for his iconic military gimmick, it wasn’t he until joined forces with General Adnan and Col. Mustafa that he became WWE Champion when he defeated The Ultimate Warrior at the Royal Rumble in 1991. If you didn’t know or don’t remember, Slaughter wasn’t exactly what you would call a babyface during this time. By not exactly, I mean not at all. He’d get on the mic, do his shtick about how Saddam Hussein was so great and how America was trash, burn things that fans held near and dear to their hearts, kiss the backsides of Adnan and Mustafa, etc. In other words, he was the true epitome of the word heel during the early ’90s and some fans were so outraged by the Hall of Famer’s actions that they went much further than just booing him. By this, I mean some fans allegedly threatened to kill him and his family and blow up the place where he works, which was WWE, or WWF as it was known back then. Some fans would argue that this was, in fact, the peak of his career. Others may disagree and look it as more of a low point and a sad and pathetic way to get some heat.
14. Bray Wyatt (Husky Harris)
Despite the fact that Bray Wyatt isn’t all that great when it comes to winning high profile matches, you can’t deny that the guy is a bonafide superstar. Before he was known as Bray Wyatt, he went by the name of Husky Harris. He went on to become an extremely entertaining person during this time and racked up some serious wins over people who matter… is what I would say if it actually happened. Of course, as you probably know, Wyatt’s run as Husky Harris didn’t get him too far. This isn’t to say it was a total letdown as he did become a member of The Nexus at one point. His most memorable moment during that time was probably when he help Wade Barrett pick up a win over John Cena at Hell in a Cell 2010. As a result of being defeated, Cena was forced to join The Nexus. Still, it wasn’t until he became The Eater of Worlds that he actually became a star.
13. John Cena (The Prototype)
While it may be a surprise to some, there was a time when John Cena wasn’t the main event superstar that we know and love/hate today. There was a time when he was just a jobber, a time when the term “Super Cena” was nonexistent. The time I’m referring to was the early 2000s when John Cena was known as The Prototype. If you think I’m joking, just look up “Shelton Benjamin vs. The Prototype (Dark Match)” for confirmation. This gimmick was totally different from what fans know him as today and may surprise some fans. By the end of 2002, Cena was no longer The Prototype. He was also no longer whatever generic gimmick he portrayed during the start of his first run on SmackDown. He was now known as The Doctor of Thuganomics and despite starting out as a heel, he soon became a crowd favorite after joining Kurt Angle’s Survivor Series team in 2003. Two years later, Cena defeated John Bradshaw Layfield to win his first WWE Championship at WrestleMania XXI.
12. Michael Cole (Heel)
What’s worse than Michael Cole sucking up to babyface wrestlers at all costs and whining about every little thing the heels do that’s considered “breaking the rules” on a weekly basis? I’ll tell you. A heel Michael Cole, who does the same exact thing, but in reverse and is more annoying than he was when he was a goody-two-shoes. This heel turn of Cole kind of started when he expressed his disdain for Daniel Bryan during his NXT days. Eventually, Cole became a full-fledged heel, annoying and anger the fans and some of his peers with antics such as praising The Miz way too much, disrespecting Jim Ross and Jerry “The King” Lawler, aligning himself with Jack Swagger, yelling and screaming like an idiot, being a complete and utter tool, etc. The one good thing this heel turn did, was make fans appreciate Cole as a good guy a lot more because, despite the fact that he isn’t always the best announcer to listen to when you want to be entertained and can be pretty annoying, Michael Cole as a heel is way worse than Michael Cole, the babyface.
11. The New Day (The Church Gimmick)
In 2014, Kofi Kingston, Xavier Woods, & Big E joined forces to form one of the most successful wrestling stables in some time. They called themselves The New Day and if you watched SmackDown in 2002 where D-Von Dudley’s gimmick at one point was a pastor, you’d see some similarities in his gimmick and what The New Day use to be. Thing is, since Dudley was supposed to be a heel, it was okay that people didn’t like him all that much. Kingston, Woods and Big E were supposed to be babyfaces, but by the sound of the booing and jeering from the fans, one would assume they were heels. It wasn’t long before the trio turned heel. When this happened, it wasn’t long before The New Day went from being a babyface tag team that got booed out of the building to a heel tag team fans couldn’t help but cheer for. They eventually went back to being good guys, only this time, instead of getting the Roman Reigns treatment, fans still cheered them. Why is this, you ask? Because New Day rocks… that’s why.
10. Cody Rhodes (Stardust)
You know when you stop and think about the Stardust character, you realize it wasn’t really all that bad. If you refute this claim then go look up The Yeti or Papa Shango on your MacBook or laptop and tell me after that if you think Stardust was the worst wrestling gimmick you ever saw in your life. That being said, the Stardust gimmick had to have been one of the most unintentionally/intentionally hilarious things I’ve ever seen. For starters, there’s that interview in 2015 with Michael Cole, where he asks Stardust if he realizes that he is just portraying a character and that he is, in fact, Cody Rhodes. Stardust doesn’t believe him. You know, if this were the early ’90s, this gimmick may have made more sense, but it wasn’t and it didn’t. As stated in the intro, not every bizarre and outlandish wrestling gimmick is bad and this one was far from terrible. Maybe a little awkward and unneeded, but far from terrible. This isn’t to say it was better than his Dashing/Un-Dashing gimmick because that would be a major reach.
9. Batista (Deacon Batista)
When Batista made his debut on SmackDown, he did so as Deacon Batista. His job was to be a big, scary, intimidating and make it very difficult for small children to go to bed at night. This short-lived gimmick may not have been the crowning moment in The Animal’s career, but hey, everyone has to start somewhere. Anyway, Batista’s role at that time was to accompany Reverend D-Von to the ring… and attempt to help him win matches because as I’ve mentioned in the entry about The New Day on this list, Reverend D-Von was a heel and so was Batista at the time. It wasn’s long before the two feuded for a brief time before D-Von went back to teaming with Bubba Ray Dudley and Batista became a member of Evolution with Randy Orton, Triple H, and Ric Flair. Then came Batista’s first world title win at WrestleMania XXI, where he defeated his former Evolution partner in crime, Triple H.
8. Natalya (Farting)
With Natalya being an exceptional wrestler and all, it’s kind of hard to believe that she is only a two-time women’s champion, having held the SmackDown Women’s and WWE Divas titles a measly one time each. When you add the fact that she has been in WWE for 10 years, it makes it that much worse. I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking that despite the fact that this is true, there’s plenty of women that don’t get enough shine. There’s Sasha Banks, who despite being a four-time Women’s Champion has never had a successful title defense with said Championship, Nia Jax, who despite being billed as a dominant, unstoppable force, always seems to come up short when it counts the most, or how about Mickie James. Despite the fact that most fans want to see her have one more run with the title, it doesn’t seem to be happening. Sure, she feuded with the current Raw Women’s Champion, Alexa Bliss, but she didn’t win the title and at one point she was defeated by a punch. While it’s true that Natalya isn’t the only superstar getting snubbed, she is the only superstar with a gimmick that involved her not being able to control her own farts. I know sometimes comedy and wrestling can be entertaining, but this certainly wasn’t one of those times.
7. Chavo Guerrero (Kerwin White)
Okay. So, in 2005 after WWE’s Draft Lottery that year, Chavo Guerrero began appearing in several vignettes to hype up his transformation from Chavo into Kerwin White. As “Kerwin White,” Guerrero adopted a new catchphrase, where he would end most of his promos with, “if it ain’t white, it ain’t right.” By that, he meant that if you weren’t a white male or female, you just weren’t right in his eyes and that… that’s just plain terrible. He no longer wanted to be known as Chavo Guerrero and denounced his heritage, which gained a fair amount of heat from the fans. Although this worked, it doesn’t take anything away from the fact that this gimmick still sucked. In the end, the Kerwin White gimmick came to a close rather quickly. Although he had a brief feud with Shelton Benjamin during this time, Guerrero reverted back to his Hispanic roots and original (real) name after the death of his uncle and WWE Hall of Famer, Eddie Guerrero.
6. Kevin Nash (Oz)
Does anyone remember Kevin Nash’s first run in WCW back in the early ’90s? No? Yeah? Kind of, sort of? Well, if you do, you probably remember him as being a member of The Master Blasters, with his tag team partners Blade or Iron at one point. Soon after that, he was repackaged as Oz. This gimmick was supposed to be WCW’s interpretation of the movie, The Wizard of Oz. If you thought that basing a wrestler off a children’s book was some sort of snap decision that WCW regretted a month later and the reason for gimmick being stopped was because of that… well then you obviously didn’t watch much wrestling back in the ’90s, buddy. In reality, the Oz gimmick was short-lived because Nash didn’t want to sign a $300/night deal. Not long after, Nash wrestled under another alias called Vinnie Vegas, then he went to WWE and eventually became WWE Champion. Then he went back to WCW and formed the New World Order. Then he returned to WWE as a member of the New World Order. Then he went to TNA Wrestling and there was that whole shtick with The Band and so on.
5. Stone Cold Steve Austin (The Ringmaster)
This may or may not surprise you, but there was once upon a time when Stone Cold Steve Austin was managed by WWE Hall of Famer, Ted DiBiase. During this time Austin was known as The Ringmaster. If you were watching WWE programming at the time, Austin was probably not the reason you tuned in every week. It was the mid-’90s and the Austin 3:16 era wasn’t in full force just quite yet. It wasn’s until he began to show a more aggressive side and become Stone Cold that fans to a liking to him. During his time as The Ringmaster, he was given DiBiase’s Million Dollar Title and feuded with Savio Vega in several matches, with perhaps their biggest encounter being at WrestleMania XII, where Austin got the victory. At the King Of The Ring event in the year 1996, Austin defeated WWE Hall of Famer, Jake “The Snake” Roberts. As a result of this, he became that year’s King Of The Ring winner. On a side, this was the same event that Austin trashed Roberts on the mic after his victory.
4. Kane (Fake Diesel)
Before Kane was known as The Big Red Machine, he was known to some fans as Diesel or at least a wannabe version of Diesel. In the year 1996, Kevin Nash (the real Diesel) and Scott Hall jumped ship from WWE to WCW. They would go on to form the iconic tag team known as The Outsiders, as well as assist with forming the New World Order with Hollywood Hulk Hogan. For multiple years they ran roughshod over WCW and dominated WWE in the rating war. Well, unfortunately, the WWE wanted the legacy of Kevin Nash and Razor Ramon (Scott Hall) to live on. So, instead of creating new gimmicks that were inspired by the two, they decided to take the low road and make carbon copies of both Ramon and Diesel, instead. Since the whole fake Diesel era, Kane has been kicking butt and taking names since the year 1997.
3. D-Von Dudley (Reverend)
If you didn’t know that at one point, D-Von was supposed to be a pastor, then you probably haven’t read the entry on this list about The New Day or Batista. Whether you have or you haven’t, let’s discuss the topic a little bit more. In 2002, The Dudley Boys parted ways via the brand draft. Bubba Ray became a fan favorite and D-Von became a reverend and a heel. If you considered yourself to be a religious person and you witness the actions of D-Von, you’d probably be offended by this gimmick, if you were a fan of The Dudley Boys and you wanted them to remain a tag team, you were probably saddened by their split and if you were a fan of D-Von and didn’t care much for Bubba Ray, you were probably disappointed and thought that he had so much more potential than being and over-the-top parody of currupt preacher, who did the bidding of his boss Mr. McMahon. Eventually, D-Von and Bubba Ray reunited and the Dudley Boys ruled the tag team division once again.
2. Rob Conway (The Con-Man)
Rob Conway is most known for his time in WWE as a member of the heel faction, La Resistance. His tag team partners were Sylvain Grenier and Rene Dupree and their gimmick was the whole anti-American shtick. Sometimes gimmicks like that are kind of cheap and desperate, this time, it was actually a good idea. During that time Conway became a three-time WWE World Tag Team Champion. Things started to go left when he and his tag team partner, Sylvain Grenier began to fight over who was better. Thier split happened during an Intercontinental Championship match that involved both wrestlers and then-Intercontinental Champion, Shelton Benjamin in a triple threat match. After double-teaming Benjamin for several minutes, the two got into an altercation with one another. The match was eventually won by Benjamin, but Conway and Grenier’s feud was still a thing. Eventually, Conway tweaked his character and started referring to himself as The Con-Man.
1. Perry Saturn (…And A Mop)
At one point Perry Saturn, was looked at as a pretty threatening Superstar when he made his WWE debut as part of The Radicals with Eddie Guerrero, Chris Benoit, and Dean Malenko. Then one night, while in a match with an enhancement wrestler by the name of Mike Bell, Saturn freaked out and attacked Bell legitimately during a match. This incident was said to have been the reason Saturn was given a gimmick where he had a relationship… with a mop. Regardless of whether or not this was punishment, let’s just put things all into perspective here. Perry Saturn, one bald-headed, bad, bad man who looks like he could kill you with one arm tied behind his back, turns into a guy who is head over heels, in love with a mop, called Moppy. After this gimmick ended, Saturn began to wrestle sporadically on Sunday Night Heat before he reinjured his ACL. Then in November of 2002, he was released by WWE.
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