Recently, Stephen Amell (CW’s Arrow) showed up on Monday Night Raw as a fan and was confronted by Stardust. Amell has made no secret that he wants to let his fan flag fly and host Raw or even wrestle a match. Hopefully, we can see the Cosmic Superstar take on the Starling City vigilante in a “Salmon Ladder Match.” Or once Goldy's all healed up, we can see the Dust Brothers take on Arrow and Diggle in a Glades Tornado Tag Match.
Amell’s appearance was another in a long line of great celebrities appearing in wrestling. Thanks to the Rock and Wrestling Connection, WrestleMania and Hollywood’s elite have gone hand in hand, but that doesn’t mean they’ve all been worthwhile encounters. Some, no matter how much publicity the business might have gotten, are forever black marks on wrestling history.
We all know what number one will be, but some others on this list might shock you.
15 You Wanted the Best…
KISS, one of the greatest rock bands in history, also has the panache and stage presence that is tailor made for wrestling. Unfortunately, they decided to hook up with WCW, so we didn’t get much. Luckily, the band didn't compete in War Games, but we did see up and coming wrestler Dale Torborg be given the gimmick of Yhe Demon. Sadly, the KISS concert used to introduce the character was a very low rated segment of Nitro. Since Eric Bischoff had believed in the character and before being removed from power, Torborg wasn't given any sort of push and when WWE bought the company, Torborg decided to join his dad Jeff Torborg as a baseball coach instead of trying out for the WWE. So the character wasn't that terrible, just a power struggle within WCW that makes the celebrity connection wasted and worthless.
14 No, Not a Pissed Off Ernest Miller
It’s the final Raw before Survivor Series, one of the biggest shows of the year. The main event for the show has the jobs of all the faces on the line. The WWE Network has a free preview going on and the best way that WWE can drive people to check out the event is…Grumpy Cat. For a faction that preaches always doing what’s best for business, this couldn’t have been good for business at all.
The Miz and Mizdow are always up for anything they get thrown at them and the pair tried to convince Grumpy Cat to be Miz’s co–star with a stuffed version of himself to be a stunt cat. Luckily, Grumpy Cat didn’t have as much to do as other Raw hosts and wasn't given huge amounts of screen time.
13 The Iconoclast Didn’t Seem to Care
It should have been one of the most triumphant entrances of all time. It should have been the soundtrack to a conquering hero, who silenced all of his critics and had truly cracked the glass ceiling and climbed into the upper echelon of the WWE roster. One thing CM Punk asked for, and received, when he re-signed his contract in 2011 was for to be able use his entrance music from Ring of Honor: Living Colour's Cult of Personality. Punk has always simply walked out to the ring without a lot of hamming it up, except for declaring "it's clobbering time."
When it was announced that the band would be playing him out for his big match against The Undertaker at WrestleMania 29, fans got giddy at the propect of the most popular guy in the company getting the star treatment. Instead, Punk did what he always did and simply walked out to the ring, making the band play a fast and incoherent version of their hit song. Clearly, Punk was already dissatisfied with his place in the company and this entrance showed it.
12 Jim Carrey Gets All Method
The King of Memphis, Jerry Lawler gained national exposure in 1982, when Andy Kaufman came to Memphis and tried to get one over on the King. The two of them also appeared together on Late Night with David Letterman, where the two men got into a fight on the air, shocking Letterman. However, it was all staged, but the pair refused to break kayfabe. In reality, Lawler and Kaufman were good friends and Kaufman’s appearances in Memphis might be the biggest moments of Lawler’s career.
Unfortunately for the King, Jim Carrey didn’t get the memo that King and Kaufman were actually friends and the actor went so method when filming Man on the Moon, the biopic of Kaufman’s life, that he terrorized Lawler on set and even demanded that he be given the King’s patented piledriver. Lawler and the film’s lawyers refused which sent Carrey into a tizzy and he hocked a big loogey at Lawler, which incited him. According to Lawler, the two would reconcile and Carrey even sent him a kingly gift, a record collection of songs sung by pro–wrestlers. It probably softened the blow, but Carrey’s antics still made for an uncomfortable film shoot.
11 Another Carey, Another Forgettable Appearance
Yes, we're aware that Jim Carrey and Drew Carey have different last name, but we couldn't resist the cool title for the entry.
Now, Carey might have gotten inducted into the Hall of Fame for his appearance at the 2001 Royal Rumble, but let’s all have a little bit of that LayCool “Real Talk.” Superstars all probably feel the same as us, in that some random cameo that means nothing, except taking someone's spot in one of the biggest matches of the year, just isn’t right. But in 2001, that’s exactly what happened when Drew Carey entered the Royal Rumble. Luckily, he entered early at number five–but still long enough for Jerry Lawler to make it seem as if he eliminated The Hardy Boyz (luckily they eliminated each other). In a bit of coincidence, Kane became the unofficial Ohio Welcome Wagon, when he came out to destroy Ohio’s other favorite son. Inadvertently, he was saved by Raven, who smashed Kane with a Kendo stick before Carey eliminated himself.
Carey’s appearance begs the question, when will the Ohio Wrecking Crew of Pete Rose and Drew Carey exact their vengeance on the Big Red Machine?
10 Who is the Real Doctor of Thugonomics?
To his credit, at least he knew he was a heel. Kevin Federline was a talentless wannabe rapper who hit the jackpot and married Britney Spears (also talentless but hot and more succesfful than K-Fed). While promoting his album, "Playing with Fire," Federline showed up a few times in WWE to help Johnny Nitro against John Cena. He even interfered in the Champion of Champions match at the 2006 Cyber Sunday, nailing John Cena with King Booker’s world title, helping Booker win the match.
The rapper then challenged Cena to a match on the 2007 New Year’s Day edition of Raw, which of course the Champ accepted. The match was no–DQ and, thanks to interference from Nitro and Umaga, Kevin Federline would pick up the win. Obviously Cena haters probably loved this, but when the guy is booked to beat everyone and then is pinned by a non–athlete, much less a non–wrestler, it pretty much makes the rest of the locker room look bush–league. Thankfully, Federline needed the outside assistance and he didn’t win a title, otherwise he might have eked out our number one slot.
9 The Whole Concept Was Terrible, So Why Wouldn’t the Payoff Be?
The UFC had begun to receive a lot of the attention in the late 90s for both good and bad reasons. Knowing this, the WWE decided to pit their tough guys against one another in something called Brawl for All. The announcers would proclaim "it's not wrestling, it's not boxing, it's Brawl for All." They did all they could do to say we're trying to be UFC without actually saying it. Supposedly, the tournament was going to be a vehicle to push Dr. Death Steve Williams to the moon, and he was even paid the prize money before the tournament started. Nobody expected Bart Gunn to be that good. Gunn would KO Williams in the second round and go onto win the whole tournament, which not a lot fans liked, generally chanting "boring" during these bouts.
Gunn was then foolishly booked in a match with Butterbean at WrestleMania XV, which makes our list for the worst celeb moments of all time. This sad bout lasted all of 35 seconds and was incredibly boring.
8 The Naked Gun 44 and 4/4ths
The Deadman has seen a lot of things in his lengthy career with the WWE. He is actually the Omega and the Alpha, the last character from the Hogan era and the first wrestler of the New Generation. This also meant he was involved in some... interesting story lines. Playing an undead creature from the grave will do that to a guy. At the 1994 Royal Rumble, it took every heel in the company to 'kill' The Phenom, helping Yokozuna defeat him in a casket match. The Undertaker ascended to the heavens and was not seen again until Ted DiBiase brought the man back. Paul Bearer was telling the entire world that this man was an Under–faker and that at SummerSlam, the true Deadman would return. This brought us comedy legend, Leslie Nielsen, who would vow to solve the mystery of The Undertaker. Nielsen would roam around Chicago’s United Center in poorly written skits guest starring George Kennedy. Comedy and The Undertaker just don’t mix.
7 I Guess the Ruff Ryders Weren’t Available
Poor WCW, there didn’t seem to be anyone in that office that knew about anything towards the end. Every decision made seemed worse than the last. It was a poor man’s version of the Producers. B–list rapper Master P. thought it might be a good idea to forge a relationship with WCW and signed a deal that would help him promote his music. WCW tried to get this over big time. They created a stable called the No Limit Soldiers, which featured Konnan and Rey Mysterio. Naturally, these rappers had to feud with people who thought “Rap is Crap,” so the Curt Hennig stable, the West Texas Rednecks, was born (never mind that Hennig is from Minnesota). According to "the Death of WCW," Master P. was given $200,000 per appearance. All you can say at this point is way to go WCW.
6 The Rev Gets Raw
What was the WWE thinking when they booked one of the most polarizing political figures in history to guest host Raw? The same thing they always think: all publicity is good publicity. This is how we get segments like Y2J and MVP bickering over how great a man Rev. Al Sharpton is. Naturally, he’s so divisive that the WWE Universe attempted to boo him out of the building. Sadly, like a virus you just can’t shake, he stayed for the entire show. Sharpton was there to promote the fact he was going to be discussing reform with top politicos in Washington, which led to MVP demanding some reform on Raw and a tag team title match with Mark Henry against JeriShow.
Unfortunately for the eyes and ears of the WWE Universe, this wasn’t the last we’d see of Sharpton. Jillian Hall would come out and ask Sharpton to help her with her music career (see, since he used to be James Browns’ tour manager). This led to her usual awful singing with a rendition of “Living in America.” Hopefully, this is the last time politicos will appear in wrestling, unless it’s the former Governator or the Body.
5 WrestleMania ‘Half Time Shows’
When it comes to WrestleMania, the WWE always tries to book great celebrities to take part in the show. However, for every Ray Charles (still the best rendition of America the Beautiful WrestleMania has ever heard) or Motorhead, there’s that cringe inducing moment where a musician is performing and the fans are heading to the concession stands. Not to mention, a match could be taking place when these performances are going on. Note to Mr. McMahon, WrestleMania doesn’t need half–time shows if you’re going to book crappy acts like P. Diddy and Skylar Grey (who have played at least two events). Even Kid Rock was barely relevant when he played a medley at WrestleMania 25. Please keep the musical performances to America the Beautiful and playing certain Superstars out to the ring.
4 The Tonight Show with Eric Bischoff
In theory, showing the nWo taking over all facets of the media was pretty cool. Having sports’ bad boy, Dennis Rodman join their ranks was a coup for the company. Eric Bischoff and Hulk Hogan taking over the Tonight Show for a few segments was also pretty cool and a great idea. The idea just wasn’t worth it if the payoff was a main event at WCW’s show Road Wild (which in itself was a bad idea, an outdoor show in the middle of a biker festival with zero live gate) involving Jay Leno and Diamond Dallas Page teaming up to take on Hulk Hogan and Bischoff. The most lasting memory of the match was Leno wringing Hogan’s arm for what seemed like forever because all of the cameramen at ringside wanted to snap a picture. No matter how funny and influential the former King of Late Night was, he should not be inflicting pain to any wrestler, much less the most influential wrestler of all time.
With one slip of the tongue, Jeremy Piven became a pretty disliked guy on Monday Night Raw. It’s not so much that the guy said SummerFest instead of SummerSlam, it’s just that it became clear that the guy was not a fan and was only on Raw to hawk his new movie with Ken Jeong, 2009’s “The Goods.” Yes, that’s what all guest hosts were on Raw to do, but most of them were still fans–Shaq, Hugh Jackman, Seth Green. These guys have been die–hard fans for years and it showed. Luckily, Piven is quick on his feet and since the fans turned on him, he turned heel and tried to attack John Cena, but the slip–up definitely made the fans completely sour on their guest host.
2 At Least it Wasn’t the Shockmaster
If there’s one thing you’ll realize while reading this list, it's that while WWE might have occasionally missed with their celebrities, WCW barely hit and almost always missed. Even when the in–ring action was cooking on all cylinders, they still didn’t know how to tie in celebrities. This is why things like RoboCop happened. The 1990 Capital Combat PPV had the subtitle, the Return of RoboCop. You would think that this meant he’d be all over the PPV or that actor Peter Weller might make an appearance or that RoboCop would somehow wrestle a match. All of these, except for maybe Weller showing up, seemed pretty terrible, but nothing was as bad as Robocop rescuing Sting from a locked cage. WCW strikes again, trying to tie an R–Rated movie into a PG event.
1 The Blackest Day in Wrestling History
David Arquette winning the WCW World Heavyweight Championship was the obvious choice for the worst celebrity wrestling moment of all time. We all know that this is a scripted sport, however, very real athletes have won the WCW (former NWA) heavyweight title, like Harley Race, Ric Flair, Gorgeous George, and Sting to name a few. Spray painting the belt was bad enough, but giving the belt to some actor to hype a movie is stupid. However, that wasn't all Arquette was used for. Then-wife Courtney Cox and her 3000 Miles to Graceland co-star, Kurt Russell, showed up on Nitro to convince the actor that he wasn't a wrestler. If you were in denial about WCW tanking at that point in time, putting the strap on David Arquette, who’s barely believable as an actor, this was the wake–up call you needed.
In fairness to Arquette, a huge wrestling fan, he questioned the decision immediately and was completely against the idea. Blame the genius himself, Vince Russo, for this one.
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