It is a key element in WWE, being able to add something new to your character every time you return, it allows fans to have a new reason to like or hate you. If you don't change, fans get bored and quickly turn away. It has happened over the years, fans booed Hogan once the red and yellow became tired and worn out.
The fans always want to see something fresh and exciting, this list goes through some major reinventions, from Farooq to The Rock, to Randy Orton. All the superstars on this list made an effort over their careers to keep adding to their character and keep coming up with new ways to present themselves. It gave them all longevity in their careers, and some are still going today due to consistent reinvention. Sometimes it's not always necessary to outright change your gimmick. Sometimes you can have the right gimmick, but after a while you just have to add a new dimension to it. People have often accused John Cena of not doing anything to reinvent his character over the last 10 years, which is why many have grown sick of him.
This list goes through 15 superstars who were able to successfully reinvent themselves in order to save their career and prolong it. Some of them used subtle changes, others made complete 180 degree changes, either way, change is good in wrestling.
The 9th Wonder of the World, The Amazon, The Bodyguard of Triple H and DX. She made a very big mark on wrestling. A core member of DX, and a trailblazer for women in wrestling, Chyna started as the massive bodyguard, and then after a broken jaw, she had surgery and returned, a more attractive but still dangerous bodyguard and finally after competing in the 1999 Royal Rumble, Chyna entered the men's world, and won the Intercontinental Title and became Mamacita with Eddie Guerrero.
14 Scott Hall
13 Chris Jericho
He started in WCW as a generic baby face, not much to him. This was during the nWo period, so it came across as just a very cheesy character. It was not until he was allowed to turn heel that Jericho recreated himself as an arrogant jerk, claiming he was a victim of conspiracy. Since the days of WCW, Jericho continues to find new ways to reintroduce himself to WWE fans, he is certainly a master of the big reveal.
12 Kevin Nash
11 Jeff Jarrett
10 Randy Orton
9 Ron Simmons
8 Charles Wright
7 Triple H
5 The Undertaker
The Undertaker is the most iconic star in wrestling, as his character was reinvented every time we saw him return. The best part of this one is, he made both subtle changes and one major one back in 2000. Changing his attire, or his facial hair, or removing the long hair, or getting a new coat. The leader of The Ministry was the same Undertaker that made his debut with Brother Love, he just evolved and reinvented himself, adding a layer of evil and sinisterness that was not seen in wrestling.
Silence is golden. Sting set out to eliminate the nWo and did so with his actions, saying very few words. His mark was made during this time, although he had achieved great success early in his career. The days of bright colors and Bart Simpson hair were gone, and a completely new Sting emerged, donning black and white, as he went into mourning for WCW.
3 Hulk Hogan
2 The Rock
The nose knows. That's why millions and millions smelled what The Rock was cookin'. He became a household name through The Nation of Domination, a group he joined, but he quickly outgrew them. He went from Rocky Maivia to the most electrifying man in sports entertainment. Even in his run as The Rock, he would make little tweaks to his character, going from the flashy, $800 shirts to a simpler look of a t-shirt and track pants, being more relateable to the crowd as the People's Champion. When the crowd soured on him for pursuing an acting career, The Rock pulled off an amazing heel run as the Hollywood sellout, which was an amazing, but shortlived gimmick, as once again he left for Hollywood and he was just too entertaining to hate.
1 Steve Austin
It had to be him, of course. The man whose entrance theme alone was epic, the glass shattered and all hell broke loose. The bald head, the goatee, black boots, black trunks ... Stone Cold redefined being a 'baddass' in WWE. For a guy who began as The Ringmaster. His journey as Stone Cold did not start smoothly, when he pitched a character based on The Iceman Richard Kuklinski, WWE creative offered him names like Ice Dagger, Fang McFrost and Otto Von Ruthless. Regardless, the transformation from The Ringmaster to Stone Cold was easily the best for WWE, and deserves to be no.1.
Austin's heel run in 2001 was a failure from a standpoint of trying to make the crowd hate him, but it was successful in the sense that it allowed him to try new things, as his character became a little more humorous.
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