This awkward and sometimes awful life is full of heels. Those who make existence that much less tolerable. Those we loath with the greatest passion. They come at every level: Corporate Scum, Middle-Class Mutants, and the Poisonous Poor. The classes do not divide heels.
There is but one medium where the heel is an acceptable figure: professional wrestling. In this world, everybody loves to hate the heel. In a sense this hatred provides a form of escapism; a therapeutic balance to the real world where outward distain for the heel - such as a boss - can lead to consequence.
The "heel turn" is an effective concept in professional wrestling and one which will never quite diminish in value. Heel turns are used within every promotion to shake up the product and characters alike with the biggest and turn coming in 1996 at a WCW Pay-Per-View known as Bash at the Beach.
The Red-and-Yellow-Vitamin-Taking-Prayer-Saying Hulk Hogan would do the unthinkable and turn his back on the fans by joining forces with the evil Scott Hall and Kevin Nash to form the New World Order. This particular turn would alter the course of professional wrestling.
With Hulk Hogan turned Hollywood, WCW would claim top spot in the industry as the Monday Night War was taken to new heights. Never before had so many people tuned in to professional wrestling. There was something in the air during this time; an undistinguished scent of Order and Attitude.
Of course, the Hulk Hogan heel turn remains the most memorable flip of all time and one which will never be forgotten. In this piece, we will aim to remind you of those heel turns that may have slipped your memory. While lost within scrambled thoughts, these turns remain a radical part of professional wrestling.
These are the top 15 awesome heel turns you forgot about:
15 Eddie Guerrero Turns on Rey Mysterio
WrestleMania 21: Eddie Guerrero and Rey Mysterio would compete in a "friendly" one-on-one contest while also serving as the current WWE Tag Team Champions. That night in Los Angeles, Mysterio would defeat his dear friend in a stellar match.
This did not sit well with Eddie Guerrero who displayed feelings of resentment in the weeks that followed. However, the team remain intact but would eventually lose the WWE Tag Team Championship to MNM.
14 Trish Stratus Turns on Chris Jericho
WrestleMania XX: Chris Jericho and Christian meet in an All-Canadian encounter on the "Grandest Stage of Them All." Following weeks of build and betting over who could Trish Stratus or Lita before the other, Jericho and Christian were ready to fight.
Trish Stratus - who forgave and was romantically aligned with Chris Jericho - would make her way out to the ring to seemingly aid her newfound lover. However, Stratus would pull one over on Jericho and cost Y2J the match.
13 Jim Ross Returns to Raw
Raw is War: Jim Ross would take time off from WWE in late 1998 to deal with an attack of Bell's Palsy. In March of 1999, the beloved announcer would return with a massive chip on his shoulder.
Jim Ross, not pleased with Michael Cole sitting in his chair would make his feeling abundantly clear; going as far as setting up his own announce table outside the ring and calling the action anyway.
12 CM Punk Takes Out The Rock
Raw 1000: CM Punk defends the WWE Championship against John Cena; who was cashing-in a recently won Money in the Bank contract. The match would end with interference from Big Show; making Cena the first unsuccessful cash-in challenger.
When Big Show continued his assault on John Cena, The Rock - who had announced earlier in the program that he would compete for the WWE Championship at the Royal Rumble regardless of the title's holder - would make the save.
11 Brock Lesnar Turns on Kurt Angle
Thursday Night SmackDown: Brock Lesnar - while botching a Shooting Star Press - would defeat Kurt Angle for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania XIX. Humble in defeat, Angle would develop a friendship with Lesnar.
Brock Lesnar would hold the WWE Championship until the first-ever SmackDown exclusive Pay-Per-View, Vengeance. where Kurt Angle would regain the gold in a Triple Threat match that also included Big Show.
10 Shawn Michaels Turns on Hulk Hogan
Monday Night Raw: the fans wanted "one more match" from Hulk Hogan and thanks to Shawn Michaels they were going to get that match, as well as a few more. Michaels would ask Hogan to team with him in order to fight Muhammad Hassan and Daivari.
Shawn Michaels and Hulk Hogan were successful in defeating Muhammad Hassan and Daivari at Backlash. However, this would not be the only partnership between Michael and Hogan as the due would team up again on Raw to face Kurt Angle and Carltio.
9 Triple H Turns on Shawn Michaels
Monday Night Raw: During the 2002 Brand Extension, Triple H was serving as Undisputed WWE Champion. Therefore, "The Game" was not chosen by either side as the champion was set to appear on both programs.
With Triple H no longer WWE Undisputed Champion, a decision was to be made: join Stephanie McMahon - to whom he was "divorced" on-screen - on SmackDown or follow his best, Shawn Michaels over to Raw.
8 The Rock Return from Hollywood
Thursday Night SmackDown: The Rock has found success in Hollywood and would return to WWE to boast about his fortune and fame while talking trash about Hulk Hogan; who he defeated at WrestleMania X8.
Almost a year later, and a rematch was set to take place at No Way Out. The Rock would once again - with the help of Mr. McMahon - defeat Hulk Hogan making the record 2-0 against the "Immortal" one.
7 Lita Turns on Kane
Monday Night Raw: While this heel turn was technically executed on Kane, Lita was already considered on of the most hated people as the fans were wise to the Matt Hardy/Edge incident and voiced their disapproval.
Therefore, this turn was inevitable. In the finals of a Gold Rush Tournament to determine a new #1 Contender, Lita would help Edge defeat Kane in the finals; effectively ending Lita's on-screen marriage to the "Big Red Machine."
6 Mick Foley Turns on ECW
Monday Night Raw: Mick Foley found his voice in ECW where he appeared and performed as the reckless Cactus Jack. While becoming a Superstar in WWE as Mankind, Foley would never hate on his former promotion.
That was until the build towards ECW One Night Stand back in 2006 when Mick Foley aligned with Edge - the very man who had recently defeated Foley in a Hardcore match at WrestleMania 22 - to take on ECW.
5 Edge Heads Towards Main Event Status
Monday Night Raw: In 2004, Edge was still considered a mid-card performer; competing for the Intercontinental and World Tag Team Championship. However, Edge was not satisfied with this position.
While serving as one-half of the World Tag Team Champions, Edge would abandon his partner (Chris Benoit) and make the most important transition of his career. Edge would turn into a top-tier heel.
4 Stephanie McMahon Turns on Her Father
Armageddon: Triple H would face his new "father-in-law" in a No Holds Barred match. The idea being that Vince McMahon was out to seek retribution on behalf of his daughter who Triple H "forced" into marriage.
In the closing moments of the match, Stephanie McMahon would come out and feign hatred towards Triple H; attempting to strike "The Game" with own sledgehammer but hesitating. Thus, allowing Triple H to grab the hammer and use the weapon on Vince.
3 Ric Flair Aligns with Triple H
Unforgiven: In November of 2001, Ric Flair would make a surprise return to WWE as the on-air co-owner of the company. This storyline would fizzle out in early 2002 as Flair return to action as a face.
However, it wouldn't be long before the "Dirtiest Player in the Game" was up to his old tricks. During a World Heavyweight Championship match against Rob Van Dam, Triple H would acquire some help in the form of the "Nature Boy."
2 The Undertaker Goes "Big Evil"
Monday Night Raw: The Undertaker's transition from "The Deadman" to the "American Bad Ass" was the most drastic character switch in WWE history. However, The Undertaker made the biker gimmick work.
During this time The Undertaker - while remaining in "human form" - would once again alter his character as the "American Bad Ass" moniker was soon dropped in favour of "Big Evil." This change of tide would occur with Mr. McMahon and Jim Ross.
1 John Cena Introduces the "Doctor"
Thursday Night SmackDown: the heel turn which you endlessly beg and plead to for has already taken place ... on a much smaller level. When John Cena made his debut in June of 2002, a strong showing against Kurt Angle would make him an instant fan favourite.
John Cena would then move on to form a tag team with Billy Kidman and compete in a tournament to determine the WWE Tag Team Champions. However, Cena and Kidman were eliminated in the first round.
The following week on SmackDown, John Cena attacked Billy Kidman; turning heel in the process. The next step for Cena was to introduce the WWE audience and roster to the "Doctor of Thuganomics."
Of course, that was then; when John Cena was not the hottest merchandise mover in WWE. The odds of Cena turning heel again are low as WWE will never release the teat of its greatest Cash Cow.
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