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My last article was about the worst story lines in wrestling history; however, there are just certain characters in the wrestling industry that lend themselves to bad story lines.
Everybody has their favorite bad character, some are tasteless, some are goofy, and some just leave you scratching your head.
I'm sure given the plethora of bad characters that Vince McManhan alone has wrought on the wrestling public many people will have their own choices and disagree with mine; however, I am sure I would take any of the 10 bad characters the readers may mention and make just as solid a list (and for the, record Giant Gonzales and Mantaur just missed the cut).
10 (tie). Dr. Isaac Yankum and Barry Darsow
These two will be stand-in's for the "hey, let's take a regular profession and make an evil character out of them" line of thought.
Dr. Yankum was a pre-Kane, Glenn Jacobs whose character could be somewhat passable given that most people really do hate going to the dentist and if that premise was good enough for dozens of B horror movies--well it still sucked in wrestling.
If the evil dentist character was a bad idea, then Barry Darsow as an evil golf teaching pro who would win matches by using his putter as a foreign object was even worse.
It appears the days of tug boat captains, repo men, clowns, Canadian Mounted Police, dentists, baseball players, hockey players, soldiers, and golf pro's is over in professional wrestling.
9. 3 Count
The only thing worse than the boy bands of the late 1990's was a wrestling stable based on the boy bands of the 1990's.
3 Count consisted of a trio of actually decent young workers at the time Evan Karigius, Shannon Moore, and "Sugar" Shane Helms with the gimmick that they were the N'Sync or The Backstreet Boys of the wrestling world.
This story line was the brainchild of Jimmy Hart who actually wrote and produced boy band type songs the group would sing and make music videos for that aired as filler on WCW Monday Nitro and it's sister program Thunder.
When it came to wrestling the group would come to the ring in boy band attire, sing, dance, and cut promos where they told fans such brilliant tid-bits as, "Our latest record is platinum and our next one will be even bigger, it's going gold."
To make matters even worse former MMA goon Tank Abbot soon joined the group as their bodyguard and would actually (sort-of) dance with the "band" in the ring.
8. Mike Awesome's Career in WCW
WCW spent goodness knows how much money to sign away the ECW World Champion who had natural heat after screwing Paul Heyman and made a big splash by making his debut on Nitro by jumping Kevin Nash and beating the crap out of him.
So after having all of these advantages and a pretty solid wrestler to boot, how do you book this guy over the next 15 months?
First you give him a character called "The fat chick thriller" and have him hit on every overweight lady in the audience.
Then you dress him in a leisure suit, have him dance like Travolta, and call him "That '70s Guy" Mike Awesome without any realization that you ALREADY HAVE a character on the roster with this same character named Disco Inferno.
Finally you call him "The Canadian Killer" and book him to throw a beatdown on jabroni's like Ernest Miller.
Awesome's brief tenure in WCW ended whatever momentum his career had, and sadly he took his own life in 2007.
7. Any character used by Mike Shaw
It's one thing for a talented wrestler like Terry "The Red Rooster" Taylor or Mike Awesome to get stuck in a bad gimmick, it's another for Mike Shaw to get stuck with a bad character.
You see guys like Shaw are not telegenic, aren't good wrestlers, and don't have that much charisma or mic skills. However, they are hard workers, good people, reliable, and work cheap so they make good jobbers.
The problem is that they need a character in order to get over and few wrestlers had more bad gimmicks that Mike Shaw.
Over the course of his career Shaw wrestled as an Indian national (he was from Michigan), an Eskimo, a crazy person, and a demented Catholic monk.
However, his career officially reached it nadir as Bastion Booger who can best be described as a human Garbage Pail Kid wrestling in a Curt Hennig style singlet. Poor Bastion did little wrestling and for the most part just farted, burped, blew snot, picked his nose, and worst of all had a crush on Luna Vashon.
6. Any character used by Ed Leslie
Remember that sappy '80s song "That's What Friends Are For"? Well the wrestling version could be called The Ed Leslie Story.
Ed Leslie had pitiful mic skills, little charisma, and couldn't work a decent match to save his life, however he could always find work because he was Hulk Hogan's best friend.
The best and most well known character Leslie ever had was the good natured Brutus "The Barber" Beefcake who came to the ring in leopard print pink tights waving an over sized pair of scissors.
If being a wrestling hairstylist in pink tights isn't bad enough ("not that there's anything wrong with that") when he went with Hogan to WCW he couldn't use his Brutus character because Vince owned the trademark.
This lead to Leslie being booked as a cult member, a pseudo-cult member, a not-so evil astrological based character, "The Booty Man" a character who shook his (not really) bare butt in the ring and who's finishing move was the high knee (get it Heiney), and of course reprising his real life role as Hulk Hogan's lackey in the NWO as E. Harrison Leslie.
5. Any character used by Fred Ottman
Poor Fred Ottman.
Like Mike Shaw he was a good man who just happened to be a bad wrestler, yet because he was a team player and didn't cost much to sign he always found work.
For almost any wrestler having to compete as a face tug boat captain would be the low point of their career, but not for good old Uncle Fred.
After a surprisingly good run in the WWF, WCW hired Ottman and planned to push him with the perfect gimmick and not only that, he would make his debut in a six-man tag main event at a pay-per-view.
The character was an overweight wrestler in a blue singlet, with a Darth Vader voice, and a mask that looked like it was made out of some aluminum foil found by the catering table backstage.
The Shockmaster was set to make his debut and call out Sid Vicious, but not only would he just call Sid out, there would be an explosion and The Shockmaster would bust through a wall putting the fear of God into everybody.
When the promo started the explosion hit and The Shockmaster tripped falling through the wall, losing his helmet and becoming a laughing stock. Any momentum Ottman might have had was lost simply because he lost his crashing through the basala wood wall.
4. The Johnson's
They were a tag team who's gimmick were that they were human penises.
Do I really need to write anything else?
3. Beaver Cleavage/Chaz
From the people who brought you Katie Vick we now present...incest and domestic violence!!
Charles Warrington was having a nice little run as part of the goofy yet popular face tag team The Headbangers, until the other Headbanger had to retire due to a knee injury.
With Warrington being a decent wrestler in need of a new gimmick, the brain trust (e.g. Vince Russo) decided to film Warrington in a series of black and white promos playing a Beaver Cleaver type character who has a thinly veiled sexual relationship with his large breasted mother.
I don't remember Cleavage ever wrestling a match due to pressure from corporate sponsors who felt the character was going too far and threatened to pull ads from Raw.
Wait it gets even better because Warrington then became Chaz a first rate a-hole who's gimmic was that he was an actor who wasn't really Beaver Cleavage but played him on T.V and who also slaps around his girlfriend who actually his mom in the Beaver promos.
2. The Gobbledygooker
Hector Guerrero was part of the first family of west Texas wrestling, a great high flyer who helped introduce the lucha libre style to America, and a nine-time NWA/AWA Tag Team Champion.
Hector, what the hell were you thinking?
Leading up to the 1990 Survivor Series the WWF was pushing the mystery of a giant egg that was taken from show to show and promoted heavily on T.V broadcasts.
If this angle happened today, I'm sure we would be reading two-to-three articles a day on here about how Christian Cage or Ric Flair was really in the egg. Believe it or not that stupid egg was really that big of a deal at the time.
The WWF spent good pay per view time that people spent their hard earned money for to feature a Gene Okerlund promo where the egg would hatch and the mystery would be over.
Finally the time arrives, the egg cracks, hatches, and Hector Guerrero comes out wearing an oversized turkey type costume, spewing some weird bird type sounds, and does a weird chicken dance.
Folks this was one of the biggest and most well promoted angles for that years Survivor Series, Hector Guerrero dancing in a turkey suit.
1. The Posse
What could possibly top an over-hyped gimmick featuring a luchadore dancing in a turkey suit?
How about two convicted African-American criminals, chains and all, and their white manager who had a plantation owner gimmick?
Brothers Lane and Booker Huffman were looking for a break to move away from jobber status (Booker was wrestling as G.I Bro at the time) and Eric Bischoff suggested the idea of Black men in chains wrestling for an "old south" type.
The story was that their white benefactor would get them out on work release to wrestle for no pay.
Lets see Black men in chains working for a rich southern man for free, I don't know about you but that sounds an awful lot like SLAVERY to me.
Even worse was the fact that WCW had a reputation as a racist organization at the time because former Producer Bill Watts made comments in a shoot interview that he saw no problem with White business owners refusing service to African-Americans.
Like Beaver Cleavage and The Gobbldygooker, The Posse actually never wrestled a match on TV (although they did work some house shows) and quickly changed their name to Harlem Heat.
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