If two immensely talented wrestlers are saddled with a gimmick that is impossible to get over, then no one in the promotion gains anything from that team. Not only do the fans have to suffer through something they do not care about, but the wrestlers themselves are put in an impossible situation. When wrestlers do not get over with the fans, it is a sad sight to see. Unfortunately, when a gimmick does not connect, it cannot be forced on them. In the case of some of these tag teams, they really did not connect with fans. And that's the quickest way for a tag team to fizzle out, no matter how talented the members of the team are.
When done properly, tag team wrestling can be incredible to watch. Matches that include tag team technicians like The Andersons, or exciting high-flyers like The Hardy's or even with an emotional connection like The Rhodes Brothers are some of the best professional wrestling encounters. However, when a tag team fails it is truly disheartening because there is more than one wrestler involved in the disappointment.
Some of these teams travelled between multiple promotions, but could not find success in all of them. In fact, there are also some that could not find a good footing in multiple promotions. If they were not in the right place at the right time (and with the right gimmick), there were unfortunately doomed from the start.
Here are The Biggest Tag Team Flops in WWE, WCW and TNA History:
21 All Three - The Harris Brothers
Despite being the only team on this list to appear in all three promotions, they were among the most unsuccessful.
Ron and Don Harris were an active tag team for the better part of twenty years. Even though they had a great look as tough-guy bikers, they were never able to get over with the fans. Whether they were known as the Disciples of the Apocalypse in WWE, Creative Control in WCW or The Disciples of Destruction in TNA, their careers never quite took off.
The Harris Brothers' wrestling ability will never be confused with being fantastic, which is the main reason why their careers faltered for so long.
Both Harris brothers are retired from the ring now, and very few fans have missed them since.
20 TNA - Generation Me
Placing The Young Bucks on a list about tag team flops almost seems sacrilegious, but their run with TNA was a low-point in their career.
Prior to becoming the international stars that they are now, The Young Bucks were known as Max and Jeremy and were named Generation Me for run in TNA. While their in-ring work was always top notch, they didn't experience the same success as they have during their independent run.
Following two years with TNA, they requested their releases, and proceeded to vent their frustrations about their run. Thankfully, Generation Me returned to being The Young Bucks and have taken the wrestling world by storm.
19 WWE - Enzo Amore & Big Cass
A lot of this could be attributed to how Enzo and Cass were booked on the main roster. While the duo was arguably NXT's most entertaining tag team and continued their great promos on the main roster, their booking eventually began to become questionable. Enzo's lack of in-ring skills were more heavily evident on the main roster and the team never seemed to win a big match together. Backstage problems eventually caused problems for them on-screen and once the duo was split up, their weaknesses as performers really began to show. Considering how great they were in NXT, their main roster run was very disappointing.
18 WCW - The Ding Dongs
When some ideas are dug out of the wrestling vault, it makes fans wonder how some promotions were able to achieve success. This is exactly what happens each time that The Ding Dongs are brought up.
In an effort to appeal to the younger demographic, promoter Jim Herd created a wrestling gimmick to interest them. His idea was that a tag team would focus around bells - including being covered in small bells, and ringing a very large bell at ringside to encourage their team mates.
The gimmick was infamously panned, and is consistently listed as one of the worst ideas in the history of professional wrestling.
17 TNA - The Johnsons
Sometimes one person may think an idea is funny, but there is nothing like having an idea rejected on national television to prove it otherwise.
When The Shane Twins debuted on TNA programming, they were the reigning NWA Tag Team Champions. While this is accomplishment should not be discounted, they are more well-known for how they arrived in the promotion. Instead of having them wrestle under their normal guises, they were rebranded as The Johnsons. The issue with their gimmick is that they were made to resemble what their name suggests due to their wrestling attire.
The gimmick received instant backlash and torpedoed the wrestler's careers. They were released from the company and stripped of the championships shortly after their debut.
16 WWE - Jesse & Festus
Sometimes extremely talented wrestlers get sacked with gimmicks that wind up running their WWE runs in to the ground. While Luke Gallows returned to WWE in 2016, his initial run was disappointing on the basis that his gimmick did not allow him to achieve success.
Paired with his "brother" Jesse and named Festus, this country-bumpkin tag team trolled around the Smackdown Tag Team division throughout 2008 without accomplishing much. While Festus' catatonic-turned-aggressive shtick was funny at first, it quickly turned stale and the team fizzled out.
Gallows threw himself directly into the role, but there was little that he could do to invest fans in this tag team. Thankfully, fans have now seen what he can do when given the proper materials.
15 WCW - Ernest Miller & Glacier
Speaking of wrestlers being able to overcome their initial pairings, Ernest Miller must be thankful that he did not stick with his first tag team in WCW.
Upon Miller's initial WCW debut, he came to the rescue of the over-the-top, Mortal Kombat themed Glacier. The odd-duck pairing worked together for the first months of Miller's career. Despite Miller's legitimate karate background and skills, his pairing with a "video game character" didn't connect with fans.
When Glacier ended up turning on him, that is when Miller's true character was actually able to flourish. For those fans that never watched WCW may only know Miller from his cup of coffee run in WWE, but his WCW character did gain traction. Had it not been for him leaving the floundering team with Glacier, he may have never found his footing.
14 TNA - Team Pacman
Following winning the Wrestling Observer Newsletter award for "Most Disgusting Promotional Tactic" in 2007, it was clear that anything Adam Jones touched in professional wrestling would not be well received by fans.
When TNA signed suspended NFL player Adam Jones to a contract, there was much public outcry. However, TNA went ahead and included him in a tag team alongside Ron Killings.
As a clause in his NFL contract, Jones was not allowed to physically compete in the ring - but that didn't stop TNA from giving him a run with the Tag Team Championship.
With one part of the team not able to physically wrestle, along with the negative publicity, this team flopped worse than many others on this list.
13 WWE - The Ascension
If this list was focused on The Ascension's career in NXT, they would not be appearing here at all. However, due to how their gimmick has been mishandled since debuting on the main roster in 2014, they have been a terrible disappointment.
The once dominant NXT team debuted on the main roster to much fanfare. However, their prospects quickly dissipated when they were not afforded the same opportunity as they were in NXT. Gone were the days of a dominant tag team, and they were relegated into a cheap L.O.D rip-off.
Fans saw through how they were being portrayed and the team quickly lost favor with the audience. Considering how much promise they showed in NXT, this flop was a huge disappointment.
12 WCW - David Flair & Crowbar
Even those that have won Tag Team Championships before can end up on the "flop" list.
Despite having some of the greatest wrestling genetics, David Flair was not able to reach anywhere close to the level his father was. Surprisingly, David has two WCW title runs under his belt, including one from short-lived partnership with Crowbar.
Even though they have a WCW World Tag Team Championship reign to claim, it was only for 16 days and they had a big assist during his win.
Their title run was at a time where WCW Championships were changing like nobody's business, so it did little to elevate Flair and Crowbar as a legitimate tag team. Instead, most fans completely forget that they were even involved in the division.
11 TNA - The Band
TNA's most frequent tactic as a wrestling promotion was to try and recycle ideas from WWE and WCW in an attempt to gain popularity.
One of TNA's most infamous WCW re-hashes was the resurrection of the NWO in the form of The Band. Consisting of Kevin Nash, Scott Hall and Syxx/X-Pac, The Band tried to reform an nWo-rip off. The biggest issue with this incarnation was that it did not have nearly enough edge that the original nWo had. Instead, it just seemed like several wrestlers trying to reclaim their former glory.
Despite holding on the TNA Tag Team Championships for a brief reign, this group never caught on with fans and quickly fizzled out. Apparently, the Band was not back together.
10 WWE - Lo Down
Even when the wrestlers are very talented, it's impossible to overcome a gimmick that was doomed from the beginning.
When D'Lo Brown and Chaz were paired together, they were initially given the moniker of being a young tag team looking to progress through the ranks. Instead, they were eventually paired with Tiger Ali Singh, and given a gimmick that didn't do them any favors. They had no connection to middle-Eastern culture, and fans rejected it. What could have been a vehicle for both Brown and Chaz to rise in the tag team ranks was torpedoed and their run together was largely forgettable.
Brown himself has stated that while he enjoyed teaming with Chaz, he hated the rest of the gimmick and considered it one of the lowest points in his WWE run.
9 WCW - Public Enemy
Sometimes a team is meant to flourish in front of one audience, but can perish in front of another. The Public Enemy was well-established in ECW as a hard-hitting tag team with a love for brawling, dancing and tables. Unfortunately, the WCW fan-base didn't know anything about their underground roots, and they floundered in Ted Turner's promotion.
WCW treated The Public Enemy like a joke, and never really gave them a chance to succeed.
None of their ECW roots were mentioned on WCW programming, so fans had no reason to believe in them. Instead, they quickly fell to the bottom of the totem-pole and eventually off of programming completely.
8 TNA - Voodoo Kin Mafia
Once again, we have a couple of former WWE stars, and one of the most successful tag teams of all time, that TNA tried to squeeze some more relevance out of. Their name was already silly enough, as Voodoo Kin Mafia, was a goof off of Vince McMahon's VKM initials. It was a bad joke already and the team ended up flopping in TNA, as the company was once again looking to capitalize on former stars from the big-time promotion rather than building their own stars. It really is a case where the bad name tells you all you need to know about the team.
7 WWE - The Dude Busters
It is very telling how successful Trent Barreta has been since leaving WWE in 2013. However, when he was placed alongside the bland Caylen Croft as The Dude Busters, those shackles were enough to make fans not want to see him.
Wrestling on both SmackDown and ECW, The Dude Busters never caught on with fans. In fact, despite being pushed during their first teaming on ECW, they lost their first match as a team. This meant that fans were instantly sent the signal not to take them seriously, so they turned their attention elsewhere.
Considering that Croft would retire from professional wrestling after the team broke up, his heart was not exactly in it enough to make things successful.
6 WCW - Misfits In Action
The Misfits in Action were given all of the clever names in the book to try and get fans to enjoy them, and were even given a fairly high-profile feud against Team Canada. However, the opportunity was wasted because fans did not care enough to cheer the group. When a team that is covered in patriotism cannot get over in front of WCW U.S. audiences, then something is seriously wrong with that team.
WCW even tried pairing the group with Tylene Buck as Major Gunns, but not even she could make fans interested enough to cheer for the group. This is why WWE didn't bring them in as a unit as part of the Invasion angle.
5 TNA - Brian Knobbs & Jerry Sags
Older wrestlers have always had a problem with stepping out of the spotlight. Brian Knobbs and Joey Sags have never seemed to realize that fans have never exactly wanted them on their television screens either.
Despite being past their prime and completely irrelevant to the current wrestling product, they were brought in to TNA following Hulk Hogan's arrival. The company tried to use them elevate other tag teams like Team 3D, but fans weren't interested in seeing these past-their-prime wrestlers.
In order to make more of an "impact" on the fans, TNA should have been spending their time on creating new acts, but relying on old ones.
4 WWE - The Highlanders
Some talent that comes from the independent scene are able to easily adapt to performing in front of a much bigger crowd. However, some teams are not able to adjust their act for a larger audience and come off like they do not belong in the "big leagues".
When The Highlanders arrived on RAW in 2006, it was evident that their shtick would not translate well to a big audience. Their "fish out of water" jokes combined with their quirks of using their kilts as weapons were not well received by fans.
It may have been great for Rory and Robbie McAllister to get a shot in WWE, but it certainly did not pan out like they hoped.
3 WCW - The Dark Carnival
WCW was well known for changing the course of their wrestlers' characters at the drop of a dime. Instead of building up to someone's face or heel turn, they preferred to do it quickly to try and surprise the audience. All it wound up doing was pulling the trigger to early to no reaction.
The Great Muta and Vampiro had a very short-live alliance, and an even shorter reign as WCW Tag Team Champions. As members of The Dark Carnival, they joined together to defeat KroniK for the championships, only to lose them the next night to another team.
Why would WCW invest time and effort in to a tag team only to have them lose so quickly? This is what WCW did best - ruin a tag team's career through their nonsense booking.
2 TNA - Basham & Damaja
Despite fans usually painting The Basham Brothers as failed tag team during their run in WWE, they were very successful as two-time WWE Tag Team Champions including many successful title defenses against some of the top teams at the time. Their WWE run does not deserve to be spoken of so lowly. Their TNA run however, could certainly be considered a flop.
Like many former WWE talent, The Bashams ended up in TNA under different names, in search of further tag team glory. However, their run only landed them a short feud against the Voodoo Kin Mafia, which they did not come out on top of.
Both Bashams are now retired, and some of that likely stems from how much of a bust their final run was in TNA.
1 WWE - The New Rockers
When a wrestling company has captured lightning in a bottle, it should be harnessed for as long as possible, and then allowed to dissipate. It is fruitless to try and catch lightning twice. When The Rockers were in their prime as a tag team, they were one of the best in the world. This means that they should never have tried to be duplicated. This also explains why The New Rockers fell so flat.
Despite having Marty Jannetty as a part of the group, his pairing with Leif Cassidy (also known as Al Snow) was not anywhere near as exciting as the first incarnation. While The Rockers were an exciting and innovative tag team, this version was much more watered down and was instantly rejected by fans.