No wrestling fan needs an introduction to the Attitude Era for it still remains the most enjoyable era in WWE’s history. With The Rock, Steve Austin, Kurt Angle, Chris Jericho, and Triple H being main event attractions, the company used to attract almost three times the audience it does today.
However, many New Era fans or the independent wrestling connoisseurs have often lambasted Attitude Era fans for looking at that period through rose tinted glasses, alleging that the quality of life of that generation's wrestlers was pathetic and that the type of entertainment irked many, especially the family audience. Despite their accusations, the Attitude Era remains the golden period in the history of the business, which almost the entirety of the wrestling fan base would love to revisit.
With that being said, the accusations of the New Era fans are partially right as it had numerous ugly secrets that have been unearthed recently. The secrets make the Attitude Era stars look unholy, with almost everyone on the roster committing certain acts, which they now regret. Most of the secrets were revealed in shoot interviews and criminal reports, and WWE can only hope that their fans forget those in the long run.
A few secrets that we have discussed are unconfirmed as they remain only rumors. Accordingly, we insist that you take the unconfirmed secrets with a pinch of salt. As always, if you disagree with any of the entries or feel as though other lesser-known rumors should be in this article, let us know by dropping a comment either on the website or on any of our social media accounts.
15 Lita: sleeping her way to the WWE
While Steve Austin and The Rock worked together to put WCW out of business, Lita and Trish Stratus strove to put Women’s Division on the WWE map. Sable and Sunny helped revamp the Women’s Division; however, it is safe to assume that the Lita-Stratus rivalry elevated women’s wrestling to an unprecedented height. However, the laurels hardly came easily.
Many insiders allege that Lita slept her way to WWE as she allegedly offered sexual favors in return for wrestling training during her rookie years; she did go through an unbelievable amount of hardships to perfect the moonsault, apparently. Given how insane the wrestling business used to be, this rumor should hardly surprise the fans. However, after numerous title reigns and a WWE Hall of Fame induction, Lita deserves plaudits for her passion for learning the ropes.
14 Bret Hart: his Sunny days
Most veterans earn the fans’ respect shortly after retirement. The WWE Universe grew to love even Ultimate Warrior and Shawn Michaels despite hating on them during their peak years. However, Bret Hart has chosen to tread a different path altogether as he has now earned the wrath of the Internet Wrestling Community for criticizing indie darlings such as AJ Styles and Seth Rollins. During his prime, though, he was widely considered one of the most respectable figures in wrestling.
However, the Canadian wrestler was far from the saint most of his hardcore marks make out him to be. HBK, who himself came across as a womanizer during the Attitude Era, accused him of engaging in an extra-marital affair with Sunny.
The Hitman later divulged his marriage infidelities in his autobiography, although he denied ever having an affair with Sunny.
13 Vader: being belittled by HBK
Big Van Vader had earned a large fan base even before setting foot in a WWE ring, thanks to his illustrious spells with NJPW and WCW. After winning the WCW World Heavyweight Championship thrice, many expected the super heavyweight wrestler to replicate his success in the McMahon Empire; however, his strained relationship with The Kliq ultimately brought down his chances of reaching the heights he should have.
While many wrestlers become friends with those they once feuded, HBK proved an anomaly as he often made foes in that way. At a house show, Vader, who is known for his strong style, apparently yanked HBK's hair before delivering blows incessantly. An infuriated HBK threatened Vader, stating he would engineer his pink slip if he ever yanked his hair. In a subsequent SummerSlam bout, HBK even publicly humiliated Vader for missing a spot. A monster being frightened by someone who weighs only half as he does is shocking, to say the least.
12 Chyna: custom-made breast implants
The word "trailblazer" is thrown around for fun in the wrestling industry today; however, it suits Chyna perfectly as she became the first female wrestler in a long time to be recognized for reasons other than sex appeal. Winning the Intercontinental Championship and Hardcore Championship, she made a name for herself before letting betrayal, depression and drug abuse ruin her life.
In her autobiography If They Only Knew, Chyna, real name Joan Marie Laurer, revealed that she shelled out $6,000 for breast implants that suited her gigantic frame – she stood at 6 feet tall – after her first set of implants ruptured during a match. The initially custom-made implants soon became a hit in the plastic surgery market as she became a model for Chyna 2000s, a model of implants suited for muscular women.
11 Bubba Dudley: wanting to direct adult films
TLC matches were one of the major attractions of the Attitude Era, and no one can claim credit for making the match famous as much as The Dudley Boyz, Hardy Boyz, and Edge and Christian can. The Dudley Boyz were the backbones of the Attitude Era’s Tag Team Division, and a then-stuttering Bubba Ray Dudley’s penchant for putting female talents through the table amused fans of the yesteryears. However, he had a fondness for one more thing that should amuse his fans more.
The former TNA Heavyweight Champion apparently had a strong penchant for directing adult films. With the aid of his pal Rob Black, who entered the wrestling business in return for his favor, he went on to direct pornography. With pornography and the wrestling business being in an unacknowledged symbiotic relationship for years now, his interest in porn direction should not amaze hardcore fans.
10 John Bradshaw Layfield: getting knocked out by Joey Styles
John Bradshaw Layfield has been known to be a backstage bully for years before becoming likeable, like many other seasoned veterans. Although he spews out gibberish from the announcers' desk every now and then, his real life character, according to recent rumors, has become less obnoxious.
However, during his prime run as a heel, he rubbed then- WWE rookie Joey Styles the wrong way. While Brian Christopher and Paul London backed out, the former ECW employee stood up for himself as he humiliated the former WWE Champion in front of the roster. While the self-professed "Voice of the Indies" decided to play down the incident, JBL apparently took notice of his antics; legend has it that he changed his attitude completely after being humbled by a non-wrestling talent.
9 Chris Jericho: sleeping with Kelly Kelly
Despite Steve Austin, The Rock, Triple H, and The Undertaker dominating the main-event scene, Chris Jericho managed to hold the WWE Undisputed Championship after defeating the Texas Rattlesnake and People's Champion on the same night. He is currently one of the very few Attitude Era stars to be still relevant.
Y2J seems to have a clean sheet, with every insider and smart mark holding him in high-esteem. However, he does have a stain on his reputation. Despite being married to Jessica Lockhard, who even appeared with him on the show Ellen once, he apparently had a fling with Kelly Kelly, who has a decorated dating resume. Pictures of him kissing the former ECW stripper made their rounds on wrestling forums. Although he remains married, he shall now hope he had never succumbed to the urges on the road.
8 Dwayne Johnson: beef with HBK
The Rock was easily one of the pillars upon which the WWE built the Attitude Era. Thanks to his outstanding promo skills and unmatched charisma, he managed to sweep the fans off their feet; it is safe to say he was one of the first few feels to be cheered by the audience. Throughout his wrestling career, he has wrestled many all-time greats, including Hulk Hogan, Steve Austin, Goldberg and John Cena. However, he never locked horns with Shawn Michaels, at least inside of the WWE ring.
Legend has it that HBK, during The Kliq's peak years, disrespected Johnson's grandmother, Lia Maivia, who worked as a promoter for Polynesian Pacific Pro Wrestling, when he traveled to her hometown. From there on, The Rock refused to work with HBK. The fans would definitely have paid huge amounts of money to see the two all-time greats tear each other apart, with microphones in their hands and inside the ring. The Johnson-Michaels missed opportunity definitely ranks among the Sting-Undertaker and Steve Austin-CM Punk type of missed opportunities.
7 Kurt Angle: sleeping with Jacqueline
Kurt Angle signed with WWE in 1998. Despite being green at the time of signing, he swiftly learned the ropes as he managed to earn 11 title reigns, becoming a Grand Slam Champion in the process. Despite not being adored as much as Steve Austin, The Rock, and Triple H are, hardcore fans acknowledge his accomplishments; it is safe to say he will receive the loudest pop in recent history if the WWE brings him on as a surprise entrant in the 2017 Royal Rumble. Despite turning 49 next year, he still has a great chance of following in the footsteps of Goldberg.
However, despite his fantastic wrestling resume, he also did something during his peak years that he should now regret. He allegedly slept with Jacqueline while on the road, with his wife Karen Angle being oblivious of everything all the while. However, karma, as they say, came back to bite him as Karen Angle legally became Karen Jarrett a few years later.
6 Goldust: almost getting breast implants
Goldust played arguably the most bizarre characters of any Attitude Era star, with his homosexual gimmick coupled with his strange attire being completely different from what the fans had been accustomed to seeing. His hitting on The Undertaker may not have looked all that strange at that time, but those who were never around to witness that live should feel weird watching Goldust hit on The Phenom of all people.
Vince McMahon is known for his insane business ideas (look no further than XFL), but none should be as crazy as requesting his male employee to get breast implants only to further the character. Apparently, Goldberg even pondered going under the knife. Thankfully, he opted against getting one. Imagine missing out on the Golden Truth segments.
5 Shawn Michaels: being a Heartbreak Kid
Shawn Michaels sowed seeds for the Attitude Era, taking in part in the Montreal Screwjob of Bret Hart before The Hitman joined WCW. Despite leaving the McMahon Empire for the better part of the Attitude Era due to an unfortunate injury, HBK played a major role in the success of the Attitude Era. Ironically, the death of The Kliq's influence was one of the major reasons behind the success of Attitude Era.
During his peak years, HBK slept around apparently. According to the grapevine, HBK had orgies with his fans; he even sabotaged Chris Candido's long-term relationship with Sunny as the latter chose to sleep with the Face That Ran The Place (sorry not sorry) behind her boyfriend's back. While his politicking is also equally well documented, his sexual escapades win him his place on this list.
4 Mick Foley: abusing blue cheese
Mick Foley was one of the major attractions of the Attitude Era as he was entirely different from what the wrestling fans had previously been accustomed to. While the Montreal Screwjob marked the birth of the Attitude Era, his winning the WWE World Championship on live television ensured it became the most successful period in the company's history. His win also served to dethrone WCW as the big dogs in Monday Night War. Given his admirable personality, he hardly has any dark accusation against him.
While the characters he portrayed seemed bizarre, with Dude Love, Mankind, and Mick Foley all producing segments that only a few wrestlers can, his absolute best in-ring invention did not originate inside a WWE ring, or a TNA ring. Apparently, he used to spread blue cheese under his armpits before his matches while being an amateur wrestler to have an edge over the opponent much before the bell. While this seems an abominable move, we can all praise Foley's intelligence now.
3 Luna Vachon: being used by Fabulous Moolah
Luna Vachon returned to the WWE upon the birth of the Attitude Era after spending a year with the company in the early 90s. Her dark persona and chemistry with real-life husband Gangrel ensured her gimmick became a success. Although she never won a championship throughout her reign, she was influential enough to be ranked 14th in WWE's official list that ranked the most influential women in the company's history.
Coming from a wrestling family — her father Paul Vachon and Aunt Vivian Vachon themselves were wrestlers — she escaped the abuses that came with being under the Fabulous Moolah's wings. However, she had her share of abuses, as she was forcefully sent as a 16-year-old novice to be photographed by an elderly man. Although no nudity was involved, she allegedly felt as though she was taken advantage of; the Fabulous Moolah's wrestling academy is a source for many such dark secrets.
2 The Undertaker: Fear of Cucumbers
The Undertaker debuted much before the birth of the Attitude Era, and much like Attitude Era's biggest star Steve Austin, his WWE career kick started under Ted DiBiase's wings. However, he made his transition from a giant peripheral talent to a superstar thanks to his superb ring psychology during the Attitude Era. With factions taking the center stage in the WWE then, The Phenom took things to a different level with his Ministry of Darkness faction.
However, despite being the most frightening figure in the WWE ever, this one secret proves he is very much a normal person. Paul Bearer revealed in a shoot interview that he feared cucumbers as much as other wrestlers feared his mind games in kayfabe. Apparently, his storyline father made him puke twice just by ensuring he set his eyes on cucumbers. Here is hoping the WWE does not write any segment with The Undertaker and cucumbers.
1 Steve Austin: assaulting Debra
Steve Austin was the poster boy of the Attitude Era. After shedding the Ringmaster moniker and adopting the "Stone Cold" nickname, he proceeded to enjoy arguably the most successful WWE run of the recent years. Tussling with Vince McMahon and the WWE head honchos, he managed to legitimize the show, thereby drawing more fans than ever before.
However, he could never be the poster boy that Dwayne Johnson and John Cena are, courtesy of his domestic abuse history. Debra Marshall, his ex-wife, revealed that he beat her three times, and that she was issued a gag order by the WWE. His ex-partner, Tess Broussard, has confirmed the same; it is alleged that his steroid usage made him the monster he was. Despite his dark history, he seems to have turned his life around for good.
Leave A Comment
Looking for an AD FREE EXPERIENCE on TheSportster?Get Your Free Access Now!