Vince Russo opens up about Gangrel's lifestyle and its impact: "It started with him" (Exclusive)

Gangrel made a surprise appearance at AEW Double or Nothing.
Gangrel made a surprise appearance at AEW Double or Nothing [Image source: Gangrel's Instagram handle and AEW on Discovery Plus]

Gangrel's latest AEW appearance has again brought the spotlight on one of wrestling's most underrated characters. Vince Russo spoke about the origins of the twisted on-screen persona and why it will always be cool, as the man behind it was passionate about the art around vampires.

Having popularized the vampire gimmick in the 1990s, Gangrel was instrumental in Edge and Christian's rise up the cards. The trio, collectively known as The Brood, was a memorable part of WWE's Attitude Era.

Vince Russo was WWE's head writer and recalled how the entire character was Gangrel's idea. During the latest episode of Sportskeeda's The Wrestling Outlaws, Russo discussed the gimmick and how it was inspired by David Heath's (Gangrel's real name) actual lifestyle.

Heath was fascinated by the mythical realm of vampires and, as Russo noted, had even gone to the lengths of changing his teeth. Regarding the decision to pair Edge and Christian with the veteran, Vince Russo said it made sense, as the goal was to have a group that drew fans' attention.

"He really lived that lifestyle, obviously, bro. He has got his freaking teeth filed down, for crying out loud. So, he obviously lived that lifestyle, so it started with him. Back then, Edge and Christian had a totally different look, and the look was very cool, and vampires and the underground, that whole lifestyle was very, very cool back then. You match that with the dress, the ring entrance, and all that stuff, as well as the dropping of the blood, and you've got a faction that's pretty, pretty cool." [From 40:00 onwards]

Vince Russo is surprised pro wrestling hasn't had gimmicks like Gangrel for years

While fans loved the nostalgic kick of seeing Gangrel appear on AEW TV, Vince Russo says viewers haven't seen a similar character in decades.

The former WWE writer admittedly was a big fan of vampires and its artistic presentation in pro wrestling, which David Heath had mastered and used to leave fans awestruck on many occasions.

Vince Russo stressed that Gangrel's pioneering work in pro wrestling was "cool and mysterious." He was shocked that pro wrestling companies hadn't considered that visually striking aesthetic for several years.

"I'm surprised; here we are, so many years later, man, 25 years later, and they've never attempted to do something like that before. It's very surprising to me. Vampires are always going to be cool, bro. Like true blood, that lifestyle was always going to be cool because it's so mysterious, and you really don't know what goes into it. I'm surprised that 25 years away, they've never done that again." [From 1:22 onwards]

David Heath seemed to have a great time as he showed up to help his old friend, Adam Copeland, in a brutal Barbed Wire Steel Cage Match against Malakai Black.

The return also surprised the fanbase, and many should look out for more such appearances in the current era of pro wrestling.

If you use any quotes from this article, please credit Sportskeeda Wrestling and embed the exclusive YouTube video.

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