Over the years, WWE has had huge success with television. They boosted the game with prime-time programming as well as syndicated TV shows while amping up the production values of their shows. While fans may complain about there being too much melodrama and skits, there’s no denying that without WWE’s influence, wrestling television today would look a lot different. Of course, this means there’s a lot that’s happened on TV the company regrets. It’s not just bad angles and characters or the botches. These are moments infamous for being not just terrible but downright horrific to watch today and bad to see even at the time.
Some are just insulting, some are stupid and others…are very, very disturbing. A few have been mentioned in WWE's “what were we thinking?” segments but others are ignored totally as WWE prefers to leave them buried in the past. There are a lot of options but these are the biggest of the bunch. Moments that WWE totally regrets ever got on the air and have even edited out of broadcasts on the Network or home video. Here are 15 moments WWE wants fans to forget were ever broadcast and show how the company has its bad memories.
15 15. Skin Slips
This is a very large spectrum and it's no surprise WWE tries to ignore it. When you have some amazingly gorgeous women in skimpy outfits, the potential for wardrobe malfunctions is rather large. Thus, it’s probably no surprise that at various points, a Diva has shown off a bit too much than intended. One surprising bit is that in a bikini contest from 1998, Jacquline was censored for her skimpy outfit while Sable’s famed “handprints” are shown. Later, in a UK PPV, Sable pulled Jacquline’s whole top off to show her chest briefly. But that’s hardly the only case ever of a Diva showing off more than planned.
14 14. Fan Interference
“Love the show but don’t be the show.” WWE tries to push that a lot and it sometimes works but sometimes doesn’t. The post-Mania “RAW” has become famous for fans hijacking the broadcast with constant chants WWE hates. For years, the company has edited fan reactions to, say, drown out boos for a guy meant to be the face. But some fans take it too far and actually try to get involved with the matches. In 2003, RVD faced Eddie Guerrero in a ladder match when a fan ran in to push Guerrero off the ladder. He was dragged out by security and the moment was edited out of home video releases of the battle.
13 13. Gail Kim’s Walk Out
WWE has famously had issues of folks leaving the company in a huff. No one can forget then Women’s champion Alundra Blayze showing up on “Nitro” to dump the title in a trash can. But one moment that WWE prefers not to broadcast was the exit of Gail Kim. After a decent run in 2003, Kim traveled to TNA and soon became a major star as the leader of the Knockouts division. In 2008, Kim returned to WWE in hopes of using her TNA tenure to boost herself more. However, she was denied the same opportunities and feeling lost in the division. Rather than try to smooth over differences, Kim decided to handle it her own way.
12 12. Hassan’s Attack on Taker
Muhammad Hassan had good potential and of course WWE decided to ignore it all. He was pushed at first as an Arab-American angered over the stereotypes of his people. Naturally, WWE decided to play up every one of those clichés with him in a keffiyeh and praying on his knees. Not helping was his backstage attitude as the guy was a massive jerk who rubbed everyone the wrong way. This led to plenty of bad blood.
11 11. HLA
2002 was not a good year for WWE creatively. The brand split was still rough and while “SmackDown” was doing well with talent and Paul Heyman’s booking, RAW was just terrible. A key example was when newly appointed GM Eric Bischoff announced that he would be giving fans “hot lesbian action”. Fans had to double-check to make sure Vince Russo wasn’t still booking. That WWE was thinking they could entice fans with something that could be seen on the Internet spoke volumes as to the problem with this entire plan.
10 10. Billy & Chuck
This was going to be a big media event but it totally blew up in WWE’s face. From the start, Billy Gunn and Chuck Palumbo had been pushed as obviously having homosexual tendencies. They had a stylist Rico, they acted up being fey and took time oiling each other up before bouts. It soon led to them announcing a commitment ceremony on SmackDown that turned into a wild affair. It got major press with the idea of WWE presenting a gay couple in a business infamous for not treating that lifestyle well, although some gay groups protested. Then the segment aired.
9 9. Shane Electrocution
8 8. Katie Vick
7 7. Trish Barking
Before she became one of the best female workers of her generation, Trish Stratus was little more than eye candy. She looked hot in her outfits and was pushed for her beauty. That included a bit in 2000 where she became the on-air mistress for Vince while Linda McMahon was recovering from a “stroke.” This led to segments of the two making out in front of Linda in a wheelchair and it was rather disgusting to watch. But it got worse when Vince turned on Trish and forced her to strip to her underwear in the middle of the ring. He then proceeded to make her get on her hands and knees and bark like a dog.
6 6. Rosie vs. Donald
Vince McMahon often wants to jump on something that’s mainstream to push WWE more. Sadly, so many of his efforts end up blowing up in his face. Here was a key example as in 2007, Donald Trump (then just the reality show star and billionaire) started one of his usual feuds, this time with Rosie O’Donnell. Never one to ignore a bad idea, Vince decided to announce that the two would settle their differences on RAW. Out came two very bad lookalikes in terrible wigs who proceeded to have a “match” that can generously be called a debacle. The fans loathed it to the point where they actually chanted “TNA!” during the “bout.”
5 5. Lawler’s Goldust Promo
4 4. Mike Adamle
On a Network segment of “biggest blunders,” Mike Adamle got his entire separate section. He seemed to have promise with experience in broadcasting and a decent look so WWE wanted to use him. But from the moment he called Jeff Hardy “Jeff Harvey,” Adamle was soon mocked as one of the absolute worst broadcasters in wrestling history. His constant botches and terrible lines (“you Jamaican me crazy!” on Kofi Kingston) had fans howling and ripping into him. On that special, Vince admits he thought he could use that heat by making Adamle the GM of RAW. That turned out to be a total joke with “Adamle Originals” that were rather bad to say the least.
3 3. Mickie Grabs Trish
Already a top star from OVW, Mickie James got a push in late 2005 as an obsessive fan of Trish Stratus. It built up complete with Mickie kissing Trish and when Trish rebuffed her, Mickie turned heel. She was shown inside a room filled with Trish pictures and bragging of her “love” for her now turned to hate. This led to the WrestleMania 22 match where, to the surprise of the announcers, the Chicago crowd totally backed the heel Mickie. She played it up with nutty stuff and they ate it up in droves.
2 2. Mr. McMahon “Death”
1 1. Benoit Tribute
When word of Chris Benoit and his family's death broke, the wrestling world was in shock. The initial thoughts were that it was a home invasion or some sort of accident and fans took to social media to praise Benoit’s past. WWE thus canceled all matches on “RAW” which opened with Vince in the ring of an empty arena saying they were calling off the “Mr. McMahon memorial service.” The episode instead became a two-hour tribute to Benoit, showing off some of his best matches and moments with wrestlers doing interviews talking about how wonderful Benoit was and his amazing work.
The problem, of course, was that by the time the show was over, the truth was coming out on how Benoit had killed his wife and son before hanging himself. Thus, WWE had just spent two hours paying tribute to a murderer. The “SmackDown” tribute was set but was instead preceded by a video of Vince saying how things had changed. Right afterward, WWE began their blacklisting Benoit from the records and naturally want to forget they paid such honor to a man who disgraced the business.
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