Sometimes the difference between a champion and a chump is solely based on the ability to cut a good promo. Pure wrestling prowess has so little to do with popularity that sometimes it's the ONLY thing that gets you over with the crowd. History has even been made out of promos, like Austin 3:16 and CM Punk's pipe bomb, and the moment that you hear them you just know that you're witnessing greatness.
But sometimes promos and vignettes were destined for failure from the very start. Can you imagine a scenario where Dusty Rhodes would ever have to replace your toilet? Have you ever tried to really listen to what The Ultimate Warrior has tried to say through all of his yelling? Were you as horrified by WCW's "Seven" character as everyone else was? These are all examples of times when people were left more confused than they would have been had they not even cut the promo at all.
While the argument can be made that live television plays a huge part in the amount of mistakes people make, sometimes they're so distracting that there's no turning back. Honorable mentions: Hogan's "Silverdome" gaffe at WrestleMania XXX, Jumping Jeff Farmer's ridiculously painful promo where he barely gets out full sentences, and who could forget about the majority of Scott Steiner's classic mic work. You better believe he still made the list though and for obvious reasons.
Buckle up, because these 15 promos might get a little out there. We hope you enjoy!
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15 2 Cold Scorpio Makes Kids Dance to School
So, let me get this straight: a group of three foot tall kids are playing basketball before school in obviously frigid conditions, one of them shoots a basketball over the rim (which is almost impossible from their height), a limo pulls up behind the hoop and the ball bounces in through the open sun roof, where 2 Cold Scorpio emerges and posterizes an unbeknownst kid. Scorpio then asks them if they should be in school, offers to take them there, denies them the joy of riding in his stretch limo, and instead tells them to dance all the way to school. Did he even mention that he's a wrestler?
14 The Miz Only Had One Job
You'd think that a guy with so much television experience prior to joining WWE would know his way around a microphone just a tad, but he fumbled around and messed up so badly during his Raw debut hyping the Divas Search competition, that it’s almost painful to watch. Here's what I can gather from his rambling: "We ALL know that the sexiest women in the world, are, or the sexiest women on television are in WWE. And tonight we're going to search for the next WWE Diva. Now, to vote for these beautiful young ladies, you have to vote... go to... to the haha, go to uh, go to uh WWE... dial 86946 and vote for your favorite Diva Search contestant and text message your favorite Diva Search girl [unintelligible] to her name. So now let's bring out the Divas!" Poor guy.
13 Lex Luger Hates Your Shirts, Billy
Lex Luger almost became the next Hulk Hogan for WWE, but his mic skills were never that great and he couldn't carry the torch to drive the company into the mid '90s. That job went to Bret Hart instead. Anyway, back to Luger. Let's see if I can point out the things that Luger tried to do but failed miserably: properly say "despicable," correctly name the promoter, know the name of the PPV, confirm if he could be paid for the show, tell the people at home that he's one of the biggest "legends and stars ever in this... GOD!," and take off his shirt in a timely fashion. That whole debacle lasted only one minute and I don't think a single thing went right the entire time. Great promo, Lex.
12 Juventud Guerrera Smells What He's Cookin'
The Juice is loose! Talk about a guy that can be sued by multiple major companies in the blink of an eye. Juventud Guerrera blatantly stole The Rock's gimmick to try to make himself famous and it looks like he also stole the slogan for Starburst just for good measure. Juvi was cutting a promo in the ring for XPW and here's a quick rundown: "Finally the Juice has come back to Philadelphia! It is a pleasure for the Juice to be in a juicy house. XPW has been doing the best decision ever to bring the Juice to the juicy house. (fans turn on him quickly) Shut up! F**k you!" He continues to drop more and more F bombs, then tells the crowd that you don't have to respect the best one, not the great one, but the juicy one. "Because he's allll about the juice." What does that even mean?!
11 Ric Flair Loses His Mind… and Clothes
The Nature Boy has had a very long history as being one of the greatest stick men in the entire world. He's always had that intangible, the charisma in and out of the ring, so to see him absolutely lose his mind -- and his clothes -- in the middle of a promo over the course of six minutes was absolutely hilarious. For whatever reason, he decided to throw around his Armani suits, his Perry Ellis pants, his $30,000 Rolex watch, and his $2,000 alligator skin belt all around the ring, and he even tossed his Gucci shoes into the crowd. Then he hit the ropes, strutted around for a few seconds, and dropped an elbow on a figment of his imagination. Oh, and he also ripped up $100 bills in front of the crowd, which they didn't seem to enjoy all that much based on their collective gasps. To top it all off, he handcuffed himself to the ring ropes and dangled in between them, wearing only his boxers and his black socks, all just to call out Eric Bischoff. I think I get it, actually.
10 Sid Has Half a Brain to Cut Promos
Sid Vicious, Sid Justice, Sycho Sid… whatever incarnation of the same character he was at the time, he was always questionable on the mic. In one of the most replayed promos of all time, Sid was confronting Scott Hall and Kevin Nash when he uttered the infamous saying, "You know and I know that you are only HALF the man that I am! (applause break) And I have HALF the brain that YOU do! (confused laughter break)." Hall and Nash couldn't contain themselves in the middle of the ring and the rest of the promo didn't even matter. He still maintains that it wasn't a mess up, but c'mon man, that doesn't make any sense...
9 British Bulldog is Bizarre!
I guess it doesn't take very long to botch a promo and this one is a prime example of that being true. In a matter of mere seconds, The British Bulldog Davey Boy Smith was shown arriving at the arena, exiting his car and asking a crowd of gathered fans who they thought was going to win the Royal Rumble. Before anyone really had a chance to answer truthfully, he exclaimed that he was definitely going to win because he has a history with Royal Rumbles and he was going to remake history by winning that night's Royal Rumble, because he's "bizarre!" No idea why you had to ruin your promo at the goal line, Davey...
8 Jake "the Snake" Roberts Has 22 to Your 21, I guess?
No, this isn't the famous "wallowing in the muck of Avarice" promo that is a thing of legend. This one is a promo that he cut directly before a match while he was clearly inebriated that features ramblings about Jim "the Anvil" Neidhart not wanting to play cards against him because he'll cheat. "You wanna play 21? I got 22. You wanna play blackjack? I got two of those, too. You wanna play Aces and Eights? Maybe I got too many of those, too." I guess I understand where he was going with the casino theme, but it's not the best idea in the world to cheat and get 22 in a game of 21 (or blackjack for that matter, which, you know... is the same exact game). Cheat to win, Jake. It's a much better strategy.
7 Scott Steiner Teaches Us An Astronomy Lesson
Something about the Earth rotating at a 47 degree axis to have the stars line up for the equinox so you can see the big dipper? What?! Scott Steiner's mic skills are a thing of beauty, but exactly what they mean no one has a clue. Every promo he's ever cut includes at least one or all of the following: size DOES matter, he's a genetic freak, he's got a following of freaks and THEY understand that size matters, the largest arms in the world belong to Big Poppa Pump Scott Steiner, and oh, that size matters. This promo, for some reason, he thought would be a great opportunity to teach us all a lesson in astronomy, though.
6 Hulk Hogan Makes it Clear
Pretty sure he calls himself "the gay guy" at one point, not that there's anything wrong with that (no, not at all!/Seinfeld). Hogan and Vince McMahon were duking it out on the mic when Hogan constantly fumbled by saying, "If you think I was just the right guy, at the right place, at the wrong AT the RIGHT time... let me say it one more time so you completely understand, McMahon... If you actually think I was just the right gay GUY... I had a match with you a couple uh... I had a... I had a match with The Rock a couple of weeks ago, and you were the one I wanted to get in the ring." An absolute train wreck. But a fun one to watch.
5 Seven Stares at Children in the Night
Dustin Runnels has had such a weird career that he's actively quit characters on screen on more than one occasion, which not too many people have been able to do before. It's hard to follow in the footsteps of a legendary father like Dusty Rhodes, but sometimes you have to put your foot down and tell the creative team that you don't want to dress up like Uncle Fester and stare at children through their windows while they sleep. Seven was a character that did just that and the vignette they shot disturbed so many parents at home that the character was dropped immediately. What were they thinking?!
4 Dusty Rhodes Loves Plumbing
Why? Why did Vince McMahon decide this was a good idea? This vignette is two and a half minutes of Dusty Rhodes (who apparently was already sweating profusely) going into a woman's house and doing some run of the mill plumbing in her bathroom. I get that he was supposed to represent the "every man," but how did this idea follow all the way through from concept to creation? They talk about the water being chocolate brown, he somehow takes the entire toilet full of crappy water outside without spilling it everywhere, and he replaces it with a brand new porcelain throne that he just happened to have lying around. From start to finish, I was completely confused. This is a wrestling show, right?
3 Road Warrior Hawk Explains "Hard" To Ric Flair
Uhh, Hawk? Are you suggesting that… are you saying you're going to… did your promo fall off the rails too quickly and you had to improvise a way to get out of this absolute mess? "There's been a lot of sports writers and sports editors flapping their yaps about us getting soft? Ahh hahaha! ... I'll tell you what, there's one part of our bodies that's soft, and it ain't soft all the time, if you catch my meaning. Ric Flair, you're gonna find out what hard is all about, because from the time I get in the ring with you, it's gonna be a hard night, all night long... When I get done with you, Space Mountain is going to be closed for repairs." I really hope he's not saying what we're all thinking, right?
2 The Ultimate Warrior Wants Hulk to Hijack a Plane
It was pretty obvious that The Ultimate Warrior was going to be on this list, but exactly which promo to pick was a tough choice. In the end, we had to go with arguably his most famous one where he told Hulk Hogan (who was "traveling with normals by conventional means...?") to hijack the plane and take over the controls from the two pilots who have already made the sacrifice (?), dispose of them, shove that control into a nose dive and then he would be entering a world close to Parts Unknown (?!). It's a really intense promo and was actually pretty ahead of its time, but it's also a real head-scratcher that goes all over the place especially because he wasn't talking about what they were going to do in the ring, instead it was more about hoping that Hogan would commit suicide before he even made it to WrestleMania VI? Whoa...
1 Of Course We Included The Iron Sheik
If you want to talk about insane promos, The Iron Sheik is the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world and for very good reason. Never shy on the microphone (and more recently Twitter), he cut some of the most insane promos of all time, but to this day I have absolutely no idea what any of them ever meant. In fact, if anyone wants to subtitle any of the various videos that are floating around on the internet, I'd be very interested to try and figure out exactly what he's trying to say, and that's not only because of the obvious language barrier. In this video, you can see The Shiek going on one of his classics rants that's funny and uncomfortable to watch at the same time.
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