Entrance Theme: "No Chance In Hell" - by Peter Bursuker, composed by Jim Johnston
Vince McMahon, or Vincent Kennedy McMahon, is arguably the biggest name in the history of professional wrestling. Till date, he remains the number one guy in professional wrestling/sports entertainment.
On 24th August 1945, Vince McMahon was born into this world and the business of professional wrestling. He is a third-generation promoter, a fact not that well-known. His Grandfather, Roderick James McMahon Sr, aka Jess McMahon, founded Capitol Wrestling Corporation in 1952, which would later be taken over by his son, Vincent J. McMahon(or Vince McMahon Sr.), who renamed it to World Wide Wrestling Federation(WWWF).
When Vince McMahon's parents divorced, he moved in with his mother, Victoria Askew, where they lived in a trailer park in North Carolina along with his stepfather at the time, Leo Lupton. Vince then went under the name Vince Lupton. He's openly stated that his stepfather had physically abused him for a long, primarily due to him being the only child who stood up for himself and even his mother when she was being beaten.
At the time, he was only able to see his father Vince J. McMahon during summertime or on occasion. Despite this, it was his father's wrestling money that paid for his military school when he was left with no other option after leaving his trailer park house at age 14.
He's stated that when he got to know his father in his early teens and got to spend time with him, he fell in love with him. In an interview with Playboy, Vince McMahon talked about getting to know his father after years of missing that relationship:
It's funny how you don't know what you're missing if you never had it. Then when I met my dad, I fell in love with him. We got very, very close, but we both knew we could never go back. There's a tendency to try to play catch-up, but you can't. You missed those years. There would always be something missing between us, but there was no reason to discuss it. I was grateful for the chance to spend time with him.
At the age of 12, Vince McMahon had seen the backstage side to the wrestling business and even wanted to be a pro-wrestler, but his father refused to let that happen. Even after obtaining his business degree from East Carolina University, his father wasn't thrilled at the prospect of entering the professional wrestling business.
He started off in the WWWF in 1969, first as a ring announcer. Two years later, he would become a commentator, an on-screen role which he held for a whopping 26 years until the Montreal Screwjob in Survivor Series 1997. However, eight years after his first role as commentator, in 1979 he and current wife Linda McMahon founded Titan Sports. Three years after that in 1981, he took over the then-renamed WWF(World Wrestling Federation) full-time.
During his father's era, up until the 1980s, one needs to understand that wrestling promoters had hand-shake agreements that they would not invade each other's territories. His father was also a staunch believer in this policy. Vince K McMahon, however, did not share this ideology for wrestling, and things soon drastically changed, not just for the WWF, but for professional wrestling as a whole.
In the 1980s, Vince McMahon began to sign superstars from different territories(one such example is Hulk Hogan, who was signed in 1984 from American Wrestling Association). With Hogan as the flag-bearer and the face of the company, WWF began its nationalisation process, where McMahon made sure WWF was relevant in mainstream culture. Perhaps the greatest example of this in the "wrestling boom" period of the 80s is WrestleMania 1 on March 31st, 1985.
The story of WrestleMania 1 according to WWE is that it was the ultimate gamble for the company. It was a grand event featuring celebrities such as Cindi Lauper, Muhammad Ali(who was the ring enforcer for the main event) and Mr T, who participated in the main event. The event was widely distributed on closed-circuit television in various parts of the United States and got record-breaking viewership numbers. Not only that, but the Madison Square Garden event had successfully sold out as well.
Vince McMahon would continue being an on-screen commentator through the Golden Era and towards the end of the New Generation Era, where the real-life Montreal Screwjob incident led to him creating the iconic "Mr McMahon" character that we know of today. Using the evil boss Mr McMahon persona, he would go on to become one of wrestling's all-time greatest heels and have iconic feuds in the Attitude Era with future megastars such as Stone Cold Steve Austin and later on The Rock.
As we know, the Attitude Era ushered in a completely new time period for the company, where the edgy and adult product drew in millions and millions of viewers, not only in the United States but across the globe. This saw WWF defeat bitter rival WCW in the ratings and they would go on to purchase not only WCW but ECW in 2001.
With WWE ushering in several great years, McMahon continued on as the company's number one man while also remaining an on-screen role. Over the years, he's had several rivalries with WWE's top stars. Around 2010, once his feud with Bret Hart concluded, he considered it to be the end of the "Mr McMahon" character. Since then, his appearances on WWE television have been rare, appearing time and again, before and after Survivor Series 2014, his brief feud against Roman Reigns at the end of 2015, a rivalry with Shane McMahon in 2016, his assault at the hands of Kevin Owens in 2017 and suspending Roman Reigns on RAW in 2018.