The 11 Funniest Moments in Pro Wrestling History
Michael N. Todaro/Getty Images
Having taken the time to watch WWE Monday Night Raw this past week, I was dismayed at how scripted it is. I say that not because some of the talent lacks in ability.
Quite the contrary, I think many wrestlers would shine if things were as free-flowing as they used to be. But the reason for my dismay is that you are never going to see the stuff I saw growing up quite the same any more.
The shows are edited neatly, the wrestlers are much more sterile in delivery. In essence, the thing that drew me into pro wrestling as a kid, unpredictability, is all but gone.
So, having received so much feedback from my first foray into talking about the 'sport' I loved so dearly, I am going to present my favorite funny moments in wrestling.
Understand, these are mostly things that were unplanned, which is precisely when the most humorous moments tend to take place. So sit back, enjoy, and of course, let me know what you think.
11. Dusty Rhodes Loses His Mind over a Bicycle
AND HE GOT A BICYCLE!
And I quote, "And den Hollawood Huck Hogan cummin out and repickin dis fight as I sed urlyer in da program here on da mudership and HE GAWT A BYTHSICKLE! HE GAWT A BYTHSICKLE from sumbody! Who'd be ridin a bythsickle in dis arena? I'm sorry I lost my train a thought that fight ain't over speakin of jibbrish Bubber went ova and got him a bythsickle. I don't know where da kid is dat was a ridin it, but he ain't on it wen he brought it to da ring and now he's uh, hes uh startin a stomp a mud hole in JL"
That is the not quite annotated version of The American Dream's call during an otherwise uneventful match between the man of a thousand gimmicks, the late Ray Traylor (aka The Big Boss Man) and JL (aka Jerry Lynn).
The clip pretty much does the talking for me. I have to admit, well before this became an Internet trope of legend, I lost it when I saw this clip. Watching WCW Saturday Night was awesome because you never quite knew when a moment like this would happen. So thank you, Dusty.
10. Owen Hart Kicks Brother Bret's Leg...out of His Leg
RIP Owen. You left us with much to appreciate. Just not this clip.
I will always remember the 1994 Royal Rumble for two reasons. One, it was the first wrestling event I watched on one of those special cable boxes in the 1990's that let you get premium channels for free.
And two, I'll always remember Owen Hart's quote (go to 11:46 in the clip). Live television is awesome. But better than the obvious misquote, the look on the late Owen Hart's face...priceless.
9. The Rock 'Serenades' the City of Sacramento
"Number one with a bullet!"
The year 2003 was an interesting point for pro wrestling. In many ways, it was the end of the "Attitude" era and some of the best wrestlers of the time frame, notably Stone Cold Steve Austin, would either retire or go on hiatus.
Speaking of Austin, he was slated to face The Rock at WrestleMania XIX in Seattle. But not before The Rock put on a concert for the great people of Sacramento. Oh yeah, I'm from Fresno, all of three hours away, so that comment is absolutely laced with sarcasm.
No one appreciated the comments made by The Rock more than yours truly. The heat he managed to generate in less than 70 seconds is why the guy is a legend.
8. Ken Patera's Epic Promo
Even Mean Gene can't keep a straight face
The title of the video alone is great. Yes, Ken Patera did murder this promo and yes, on its face that makes it a funny video. But the kicker is seeing Gene Okerlund, usually a true professional, absolutely lose it at the 1:18 mark.
I will never forget watching this as a kid, my wrestling-hating father overhearing it while making breakfast asking, "I thought those guys read from cue cards? You mean to tell me he can't read, either?"
If someone can tell me what a red-stedded stepchild is, I will be forever grateful.
7. Paul Roma Becomes a Horseman
Eh, they couldn't get Jim Powers?
I wish this was 'haha' funny. No, this is, cue up the Power and Glory jokes funny.
The greatest stable in the history of pro wrestling was being reformed in 1993. Ric Flair and Arn Anderson are on the set of Flair's talk show, "Flair for the Gold" and speculation is running rampant about who the newest Horseman is going to be?
Could it be Sting (again)? Maybe Dustin Rhodes (or maybe not). I thought it would be newly signed Davey Boy Smith, riding the momentum of his WCW title shot against Vader.
And then one half of the Young Stallions came out. No, not Jim Powers. Pretty Paul Roma becoming a member of the Four Horseman is the equivalent of Flavor Flav making People's Most Beautiful List.
In retrospect, the only good thing was that Steve McMichael can say he was better than one member of the stable historically. Or not.
6. The First DAMN from Ron Simmons
And a legend was born
There's an old slogan that says "the original and still the best". That definitely applies the first time Ron Simmons uttered his now infamous one-word salvo to King Booker back in 2006.
During a promo with WWE champion John Cena and the "King," Simmons came out to address the, uhh, less than ethnic persona Booker had adapted.
What followed was comedy of the simplest and highest order. His one word essentially symbolized what many like-minded people were thinking. A classic moment. And a spawn, sadly, of dozens of inferior repeats.
5. Taka Michinoku Face Plants at 2000 Royal Rumble (and Jerry Lawler Loves It)
Evidently, the human face does not bounce high
What do you get when you combine a high quality botch, a lot of political incorrectness, and an on fire Jerry Lawler behind the mic? Wrestling gold, that's what!
On the heels of his partner Funaki's elimination, Kaientai's Taka Michinoku was supposedly to be summarily dismissed by The Big Boss Man.
Instead, he ended up looking like a human javelin that did not stick. And thankfully, Jerry Lawler would not let any of the viewers or production people working that pay-per-view forget it.
"Can you show us that uh, poor Chinese guy Taka Michinoku get thrown?" (Jim Ross thankfully points out that Michinoku is Japanese)
"Oh yeah, I love this! Show it again, watch his face! OH!"
"Can wa...can we see Taka get eliminated one more time?"
4. Jason Sensation Spoofs Owen Hart
What am I, an aardvark? WHOOOOOOO!
At the height of the Monday Night wars between the WWF and WCW, there were frequent jabs at each other from the rival networks. The infamous Bret Hart midget after the Montreal Screwjob, the Huckster and the Nacho Man, okay, well it was mostly the WWF.
But there was a great parody during the feud between Degeneration X and The Rock led Nation of Domination. Triple H was decent as "The Crock". The Road Dogg Jesse James was laughably annoying as D-Lo Brown. And Billy Gunn and X-Pac typically just stood there and took up space.
The show however was stolen by wrestling mark and impersonator Jason Sensation who launched into a dead-on impression of Owen Hart. The line, "I know I'm late, but my nose got here 10 minutes ago!" will live on.
So will Owen's 'threat' to Jason Sensation that he was going to "slap your face, you pissant!"
3. Halloween Havoc 1995: The Yeti Dry Humps Hulk Hogan (yeah)
Hey, a mummy's gotta do what a mummy's gotta do
No back story here. I watched the ridiculous 1995 Halloween Havoc. It was billed as a combination monster truck (huh?) duel and world heavyweight title match between darkside Hulk Hogan (black tights and boots in a little NWO preview) and The Giant.
If I had told you that The Giant losing the monster truck duel to Hogan and while attempting to choke Hogan to death would fall off the top of Joe Louis Arena to his apparent death, only to return for the match, that would be the absurd low point, right?
WRONG! The match devolves into a mismatch of heel turns and run-ins as Jimmy Hart turns on Hogan, only for Randy Savage and Lex Luger to run in, apparently to save the Hulkster. That's when things get real my friends.
A massive mummy (ehh...) begins walking down to the ring, arms outreached in a blatant ripoff of something from a Boris Karloff movie. Called The Yeti, it walks into the ring and begins...to dry hump Hogan. You can call it a shimmy or whatever, I already made up my mind. He dry humped Hogan.
To make matters worse, the guy playing The Yeti (poor Ron Reis) FORGETS HE'S A MUMMY! He begins walking around like a normal guy then the light comes after about 10 seconds, "Oh yeah, I'm a mummy!" and the hands come back up. Sadly that is not on the clip. Trust me, you're better off without it.
2. The (In)Glorious Debut of the Shockmaster
Can I just wrestle as Tugboat?
Until not too recently, I never thought anything would top this for pure hilarity. All of the elements of wrestling comedy crashed together to create the most hilarious live botch in wrestling history.
Heading into the 1993 WarGames, the team of Sid Vicious and Harlem Heat anxiously awaited the name of Sting and Davey Boy Smith's mystery partner.
Then Sting told them they were in for a shock and he yells out his name. Then it begins. Lame explosion and almost instantaneously, The Shockmaster tumbles into wrestling immortality.
Stomach askew, glittery Storm Trooper helmet discarded, I have to give him credit for getting up and finishing the promo. But the damage was obviously done.
To make things even more funny, listen to Ric Flair's commentary at 3:40. And then listen to the strangely familiar voice of The Shockmaster, or better yet, how it seems out of sync with his hand gestures to Sid and Harlem Heat.
Ole Anderson, you sly angry bitter fox, you! Needless to say, if I ever need a laugh, I can cue up this clip.
1. Thanks to Booker T, I Confirmed That Hulk Hogan Was Indeed Black
Hogan's tan was not just from the sun evidently
Here it is. Did you really think it could be anything else?
Maybe the most immortalized comment in pro wrestling in the Internet age. I do not condone the use of the N-word, but I do not have a stick up my rear in terms of finding humor in something.
Booker T made it plain what we all knew or suspected: Hulk Hogan is a black man. Enjoy.
"The Brain" in all his glory
There you have it. I would be remiss if I did not randomly spout some of the honorable mention moments that did not make the cut: the SummerSlam sign falling as Gene Okerlund attempts to interview Rick Rude in 1989 (Google worthy), any of the times Ric Flair called a random fan 'fat boy', Ultimate Warrior promos where he made obscure references to "Ho Kogan" instead of Hulk Hogan, etc.
But the clip that I leave you with is of the single funniest man in pro wrestling history, the unparalleled Bobby Heenan. It would've been unfair to try and single out a clip, so instead, I turn the floor first to him, and then to you. Let me know what your moments were, if you agree or disagree, and your general thoughts.