Chyna is one of the most controversial figures in WWE history. From her broken relationship with Triple H to her stint on reality TV to her infamous sex tape with Sean "X-Pac" Waltman, Chyna has been at the center of one tabloid situation after another.
However, that is her personal life. As far as her professional life is concerned, there is no doubting what she contributed to the industry when she was an active WWE Superstar. But after considering the story reported on Lords of Pain, I have to ask: Does she deserve to be in the Hall of Fame?
It's a tough one, right? After all, I personally have not encountered any fan who would argue what she did for women while working for Vince McMahon. In fact, when it comes to that part of her life, the consensus among a good number of fans is that she more than deserves the proper recognition for her accomplishments.
She stepped into a man's world and completely redefined the role women traditionally had in the WWE. There had been women before in the company who were very capable in the ring: Alundra Blayze, Bull Nakano and Sherri Martel, just to name a few.
There were also many who immediately followed after Chyna as well or performed around the same time that she came up. Jacqueline, Ivory, Molly Holly, Lita, Trish Stratus and Victoria are the best of the best when it comes to the Divas in WWE. So, Chyna was not alone in her efforts.
But for me, she was the first one who truly made an impact and forever changed the role of women in that company. And that's because she was not a piece of eye candy. She was not provocatively dressed or covered in too much makeup, and she didn't throw herself at the male WWE Superstars whenever she was on TV.
She was not the damsel in distress who was forced to depend on a man for protection because she could not fight back. And her character did not exist to get a man over. She may have been on the arm of Triple H, but, truth be told, he was there for her sake more than she was there for his.
Chyna was exactly what the WWE called her. She was the ninth wonder of the world.
Chyna was big, strong and physically fit, and she had a no-nonsense attitude that made her a great heel. She needed no one to defend her, and she needed no one to lean on. Chyna could more than fend for herself and was able to physically stand toe to toe with male Superstars in the company. She broke the mold for women who would follow after her. Even though we have not truly seen anyone else do what she, we have seen what toughness looks like on a woman in WWE.
And it looks pretty good.
There is no doubt about it; Chyna was one of a kind. She was tough, and she was fearless. She broke barriers in spite of those who claimed that she had no business in the ring with a man. She made no apologies for what she could do or the opportunities given to her. And she took full advantage of them.
So for all of those reasons, there is no question she definitely deserved to be in the WWE Hall of Fame.
But that was then. That is not the same Chyna we see before us today. The Chyna we are now looking at is one who has not only had sex on tape but has also made a living having sex on tape.
This is a lifestyle she wanted. She pursued it, and she saw it through. Chyna became a porn actress, and when that happened, I believe the door closed for her in WWE.
And for anyone out there who wants to compare her to her male counterparts in WWE who struggled with demons (whether drugs or alcohol), I can only say I do not see the comparison. Those men had problems and made mistakes. They made bad errors in judgment and had to deal with the consequences.
Jake the Snake Roberts and Scott Hall are two of the most infamous examples of WWE Superstars who could not hold their lives together. They are each currently working on staying clean, and their issues undeniably come from mistakes they have made and again—errors in judgment.
But does Chyna believe her X-rated porn career is a mistake? Does she have a sex addiction that requires her to have intercourse on camera? Is she currently in a support group as she attempts to put this life behind her while she humbly asks WWE and the fans for another chance?
I believe that in this modern era of the PG-rated family environment of WWE—where there is no blood, very little cursing, and a big focus on anti-bullying and the Make-A-Wish kids—there is no room for Chyna. Had she taken steps to separate herself from her porn career or if she had perhaps just walked away and publicly said she was moving on from it, maybe the outcome would be different.
But for me, the moment she became a porn star was the moment her place in the WWE Hall of Fame was called into question. Again, this is not the same Attitude Era company she thrived in. This is not cutting-edge risque television anymore.
This is WWE that acknowledges its past but does everything it can to be politically correct for the present and the future. Because of this different direction, I believe the WWE will not go through with inducting Chyna into its Hall of Fame.
Having said that, though, we cannot forget that this Hall of Fame is unlike many others in professional sports. The final decision on who gets in and who does not is not up for a vote or open for endless debate. Vince McMahon is the one who makes the call. And if the boss decides that, despite everything she has done and continues to do, Chyna still deserves a spot in his Hall of Fame, it will happen.
Of course, anything can happen in WWE.