Padraic Toolan, Tom Casola, Amerigo Diehl, Lowlife Louie Ramos and Brian Damage
It doesn’t matter if it was WWF, ECW, WCW, AWA or elsewhere.. Who were the top five worst gimmicked wrestlers of all time?
5. Nailz – a convict who accused The Big Boss Man of abusing him in prison. This one never had a chance. The best thing he ever did for WWE was try to kill Vince McMahon and then prove himself to be a lunatic at the steroid trial.
4. The Goon – I got nothing. This one absolutely sucked.
3. The Yeti – IT’S THE YEH-TAY! The Dungeon of Doom in itself was awful, and this was the worst of the bunch. Why the fuck was the Yeti dressed like a mummy? Thankfully they dropped the gimmick after one match.
2. TL Hopper – Tony Anthony got one step up from the Dirty White Boy in Smoky Mountain. Apparently Vince thought he looked like a plumber. So… fuck it, let’s have a wrestling plumber. Thinking about it… was this really a step UP? At least he was a main eventer in SMW… and had the Dirty White Girl.
1. The Fat Chick Thrilla – Mike Awesome was, well, awesome, until… GOD DAMNIT! He fucked fat chicks. That’s the gimmick. HE FUCKED FAT CHICKS! Maybe they were trying to get more popular with the fat girl fan base? Who the hell knows, but Awesome’s career never recovered.
05) DING DONGS – probably the worst tag-team gimmick. This was the brainchild of WCW Executive Vice President Jim Herd, and this masked duo debuted in the summer of 1982. Under the masks were preliminary wrestlers Jim Evans and Richard. They had bells on their wrists and ankles, and conveniently a bell was attached to a ring post, and the man standing on the apron would ring the bell until his partner came in, and then it was HIS turn to ring it. Needless to say they were consider more of DONGS then Dings, and they faded very quickly. In case you want to see this, here is their debut match
04) WHO – What? No, Who! Huh? Not Huh, but Who! Yes, I know it sounds like a bad rip-off of Abbott and Costello’s “Who’s on First”, and maybe that is what this was supposed to be. This masked villain debuted on the July 6, 1996, episode of Superstars and disappeared 2 months later. His last match was on the September 12 SummerSlam pre-show “The Bikini Beach Blast-Off Party, and he defeated Alex Porteau. If you are wondering what happened to him, I am guessing he jumped into a Tardis. Truthfully, the man under the mask was none other then Jim “the Anvil” Neidhart.
03) THE DICKS – Exactly what every federation needs a fake Chippendales tag-team that blinded their opponents with baby oil. “Brothers” Chad and James debuted in October 2005 with a win over The Legion Of Doom (the Animal & Heidenreich version). Their name was created by none other than Vince McMahon. I wonder if Vince love knowing Dicks came out of his mouth?!?!? Needless to say they were gone within five months.
Here is their Smackdown debut https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YaJZus5Svac
02) PHANTASIO – The gimmick was a bit confusing. Not sure he was a mime or magician or both. He came to the ring with no entrance music. He wore a mask, but had identical face paint underneath. Phantasio was portrayed by Harry Del Rios. Phantasio debuted on the 1995 episode of Wrestling Challenge against Tony DeVito. Del Rios lacked any real magical. The character was poorly received that Phantasio lasted only one televised appearance before he “disappeared”. Interesting side note: Del Rios’ opponent Tony DeVito went on to have some success in 2000 when he joined the ECW and was part of the Da Baldies.
Here is that memorial match: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jwmxqEJnzHE
01) SEVEN – I do not know of any other character that departed during their debut. For weeks the WCW broadcasted vignettes of a mysterious white face painted character floating outside of a child’s bedroom window. The intent (I guess) was to portray a bogey-man nightmare type of character, someone who haunts our dreams.
On November 8, 1999 edition of Nitro Seven made his debut. Seven had an outfit, lights and ambiance very reminiscent to The Undertaker. Instead of walking to the ring, Seven floated from the entrance ramp to the ring. The moment Seven got into the ring, he took the microphone and …. began to sh*t all over his former WWF character, and this current character. In case you are wondering who this person is, it is none other than Dustin Runnels (a.k.a. Goldust, Dustin Rhodes). Reportedly the character was dropped at the last second after Ted Turner’s Standards and Practices expressed concern that this gimmick could be misinterpreted as either a pedophile or child abductor.
To see this go to:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V8FclVxrsyQ
Top 5?? Wow this could be at least a top 50 if we wanted it to be, as there have been so many over the years. It is really hard to narrow it down, but here goes:
5. Mantaur– Ummm ok, where do we start, the bad costume, or the giant bull head he wore to the ring. As far as mythological creatures go the Minotaur is by far my favorite, and done properly it evokes terror in even the toughest of people. This gimmick just made me cringe.
4. The Goon– Ok, maybe, just maybe the Goon might have worked in the 70’s or early 80’s when Kayfabe was alive and well, however by the 90’s most people knew what was going on in wrestling and trying to sell a character as a hockey player who was deemed too violent for the NHL, so he switched to wrestling was just not convincing. Not to mention the poor execution of the gimmick overall.
3. Red Rooster– Terry Taylor was a great wrestler who has a keen sense for how the business operates as evident by years working behind the scenes in various roles. Saddling him with the Red Rooster gimmick was idiotic and made him a laughing stock when the focus should have been on his in ring abilities.
2. Akeem– Ok, One Man Gang, tough, intimidating biker like dude who looks like he could clear out a bar or pub of even the roughest, rowdiest drinkers on a Saturday night. Akeem, well besides horribly racist, was just a stupid gimmick to begin with. Who really believed that all of a sudden this tough street thug found his roots were based in Africa and now he is following that path.
1. The Shockmaster– Fred Ottman was a big guy, and like the One Man Gang could probably take on a whole crowd in necessary. So what do we do with him, hmm lets put him in a glittery purple storm trooper helmet and have him bust through a wall!!! Forget about the fact that he tripped and ruined the whole vibe, lets pretend the entrance went flawlessly, HE IS STILL WEARING A GLITTERY PURPLE HELMET!!!! Who came up with this nonsense?
Loaded question, as there has been so many terrible gimmicks throughout the years, whether they are insensitive or just plain dumb..there has been too many.
5) The Gobbledy Gooker Not so much a wrestler here. But hear me out..for months, nothing but hype, the showing of the egg. The buildup was huge…only to have one of the biggest letdowns in wrestling history take place.
4) Oz..if you remember the movie, the wizard was the short balding old man that pretended to be a great and powerful wizard. Here they take a young ,healthy full of potential Kevin Nash and literally bury any chance he may have at success…He is very lucky his career bounced back.
3) Saba Simba. Tony Atlas was a famous wrestler and former tag team champion,who had fallen on some difficult times due to personal demons…and while commended on the WWF’s part to help him by rehiring him. They saddle him with one of the most outwardly racist gimmicks of all time. Barely acknowledging who he is and what he had accomplished.
2) Bastion Booger. Mike Shaw, talented wrestler who altho seemed out of shape, worked through the American and Canadian territories..was saddled with perhaps the worst looking wrestling outfit ever, and his size and weight were constantly made fun of..This would never fly in this generation.
1) The Red Rooster. Terry Taylor, acclaimed grappler throughout the south east, mid Atlantic and Florida areas is picked up by WWF..months after his debut and after breaking away from manager Bobby Heenan, he is dressed up as a farm animal and made to act as one.. it is painfully obvious he pissed of the wrong person, and in turn becoming one of the worst footnotes in wrestling lore.
5. Hole in One Barry Darsow – Easily Barry Darsow’s worst gimmick that was handed to him. He went from a mean Russian, to a bad ass member of Demolition, to a Repo Man and then this. He was some sort of evil golfer in WCW.
4. The Battling Turtles (Or Whatever they were officially called) – Barry Hardy and Duane Gill (The future Gillberg) came out as a wrestling version of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. I mean how was this ever going to get over or be used considering copyright laws and all of that. There was also a version in the USWA called Kowabunga which was just as silly.
3. Isaac Yankem DDS – One of Glenn Jacobs early WWF gimmicks that was stupid and useless. A wrestling dentist complete with jagged, yellow teeth. I guess that was the great joke behind the gimmick?
2. Arachnaman – Whatever you do, don’t call him Spiderman! Arachnaman was much different than Spiderman. Spiderman wore red and blue outfit while Arachnaman wore yellow and purple. Spiderman shot webs out of his writs , while Arachnaman threw out ribbons from his hands. Poor Brad Armstrong never had a good gimmick in his career. This probably being his worst in WCW.
1. The Sisters of Love – Ah yes, who could forget the wrestling nuns that debuted for the WWF back in 1997? They were managed by Brother Love and wore nun outfits complete with the flying nun habits. In reality, they were Mosh and Thrasher of the Headbangers. Thankfully this gimmick didn’t last long at all.
You can read all previous Top Five pieces here.