5 Dumbest WWE Gimmicks
Gimmick performers were once a huge part of WWE television. During the mid-1990s in particular, it seemed as if nearly every performer had a day job.
WWE wrestlers during this time period featured a Tax Inspector (IRS), Repo Man (the imaginatively moniker-ed Repo Man), a Garbage Man (Duke "The Dumpster" Droese) and a Prison Guard (Big Boss Man, who incidentally had worked as a Prison Guard in real life).
Then, there were even more outrageous gimmicks that were not of this world such as the Voodoo Practitioner, Papa Shango and Mantaur, half man, half bull, based upon the Greek legend monster, The Minotaur. For every successful gimmick such as The Undertaker, there was an embarrassment like The Red Rooster.
These insane characters were not exclusive to WWE, WCW had its fair share of misses in the gimmick department too. Most famous was the infamous Shockmaster.
Debuting on an episode of "A Flair for the Gold" at Clash of Champions 24, The Shockmaster made a dramatic exit bursting through a wall but made the appearance more memorable by tripping over a skirting board to the floor.
To make the moment even more embarrassing, Shockmaster's helmet (a Star Wars Stormtrooper helmet covered in glitter) fell off, exposing Fred Ottman's (the man behind the character) balding head. Ottman frantically placed the helmet back on and rather lamely pointed angrily at Sid Vicious while his pre-recorded lines played over a speaker.
It was an inauspicious debut which was highlighted by groans from Ric Flair and Davey Boy Smith who couldn't believe what they were watching on the stage with them. Incredibly, Vicious argued back at Shockmaster somehow keeping a straight face.
Shockmaster was dead on debut.
Less memorably, but an even bigger embarrassment for WCW came with the infamous character of Seven.
Portrayed by Dustin Runnels, of Goldust fame, Seven was introduced to the audience via several creepy vignettes, the most disturbing of which saw Seven watch a little boy asleep in his bedroom from the other side of the window.
Alarming Turner executives and parent groups with the obvious (but thankfully unintentional) connotations, the character was quickly terminated.
Runnels made his in-ring debut as Seven on a 1999 episode of Nitro wherein he denounced the gimmick and all unrealistic characters in wrestling and declared he would be wrestling under his real name instead.
It was an unbelievable spectacle.
Thankfully, come the dawn of the "Attitude Era" in WWE, these wild, nonsensical gimmicks largely disappeared from television as the company took a more serious tone in its content. WCW went the other way which partially contributed to their dramatic fall from grace and non-existence as a company in March 2001.
In the following slideshow, SK counts down the five most asinine WWE gimmicks in history.
#5 Bastion Booger
The legend goes that the character of Bastion Booger was designed as a punishment for its performer Mike Shaw.
If true, it was an extremely effective one.
Shaw had previously portrayed the gimmick of Friar Ferguson which was soon dropped due to complaints from the Catholic Church.
Disappointed that Shaw had failed to lose weight as the company had requested, the new character they inflicted on him was that of an overgrown, slovenly baby, in an outfit designed to resemble a nappy and that he also had a hunch back.
Unsurprisingly, the gimmick was not successful and was discontinued within a year.
Shaw never returned to the company except for a one-off appearance to mark the 15th-anniversary episode of Raw in which he portrayed the gimmick one last time in a segment in which Vince McMahon admitted to having slept with him.
A somewhat fitting end for an outrageous character.