A for Athlete

Pro-wrestling Characters[]

Rassling, or wrestling, an American entertainment for the better part of the last 100 years, has characters.

Wrestling has evolved from carnival side-show matches to sold out arenas.

The Gobbledy Gooker[]

Maybe the World Wrestling Federation’s writers were on a huge Thanksgiving kick. Or maybe they were taking a lot of hallucinogenics. Either way, they thought that having a grown man wearing a turkey costume and hatching from an egg was a character that deserved TV time. Once the Gooker finally got into the ring, he would dance around maniacally, seemingly impervious to the shower of boos being rained upon him. The Gooker was so despised by the wrestling world that a yearly award for the worst wrestling gimmick adopted his name. Cheers Goobledy Gooker, you were the worst of the worst. In this business, that’s an incredible feat.

The Yeti[]

First introduced to the audience as a giant block of mysterious ice, the Yeti was supposed to be another great villain to challenge Hulk Hogan for the belt. But when the ice thawed, and it was time to fight, the Yeti turned out to be a guy who looked like the time your kid brother wrapped himself in toilet paper to look like a mummy. The guy also had next to no real in-ring skills to boot. During one of his matches, he botched a simple bear hug so badly that it appeared he was forcing himself onto Hulk Hogan. Later on, the Yeti became a ninja; makes just about as much sense as the rest of the character.

Isaac Yankem DDS[]

Nobody likes to have their teeth drilled, everyone is at least a little bit afraid of going to the dentist. Somehow, the WWF turned this fear into a full-fledged freakazoid character named Isaac Yankem, the mad dentist who would threaten his opponents using dentist cliches. Getting told you’re about to be fit for the biggest pair of braces right before a big match isn’t threatening, it just sounds strange. The most ironic part was that Yankem had a terrible set of pearly whites himself. Thankfully, the WWF saw the error of their ways and Yankem eventually became Kane, the red-masked brother of the Undertaker.

The Repo Man[]

Yet another example of the WWF repackaging a completely innocuous real-life profession and turning it into a wrestling gimmick, the Repo Man was mostly active in the early-90s (the Golden Age of strange wrestling gimmicks.) He wore a Robin-type mask and walked around repossessing wrestlers cars, hats, belts etc. He also talked in a high-pitched voice and tied opponents up with tow wire. The Repo Man always seemed like more of an annoyance rather than a legitimate wrestler. Here’s a question: if he kept stealing things from the other wrestlers, why didn’t they just all corner him in the locker room and beat him up or something?

Johnny B. Badd[]

What do you get when you cross Little Richard, a loose understanding of disco culture, and a pretty bodacious mustache? WCW’s Johnny B. Badd. Whoever wrote this character in must have spent a decent amount of time at the disco clubs. Badd sauntered to the ring wearing a feather boa and about two pounds of makeup. Want to guess how the primarily Southern fans of WCW treated him?

PN News[]

Sometimes trying to get with the times is a good thing, other times it can explode in your face with the force of a nuclear warhead. PN News is an example of the latter. In an attempt to embrace the hip-hop generation, WCW hired the man known as PN News, a really really fat white guy dressed like LL Cool J. News would rap himself to the ring before every match eventually just ending each rap by saying “Yo baby, yo” over and over again. Needless to say, he sucked inside the ring and on the mic.


Spiderman has been a huge hit for fans of all ages for years now. And thanks to the WCW and their lack of knowledge of copyright laws, he briefly appeared in the ring. Arachnaman displayed somewhat superhuman agility, very little personality, and an affinity for silly string. Arachnaman’s theme song is also up there amongst the worst entrance songs in wrestling history. To the surprise of pretty much only the WCW brass, a lawsuit helped make this monstrosity disappear.

Giant Gonzalez[]

These days, if nothing else, professional wrestlers have to be in great shape. Back in the early 90’s if you weren’t in great shape, it was no problem. All they would have to do is send you to wardrobe where they’d set you up with a t-shirt with painted on muscles and some hair implants that covered your shoulders and groin. And despite his wardrobe, Giant Gonzalez may be most famous for his match against the Undertaker at Wrestlemania IX, a match he lost by DQ after using chloroform to knock out his opponent. Classy.

Loch Ness[]

Legend has it that in the murky waters of Loch Ness lives a monster that terrorizes the people. Somehow, this was turned into having a big fat guy wear a garbage man’s outfit to the ring. This mythological beast could barely perform a running elbow drop without almost collapsing from exhaustion. In terms of in-ring athletic ability, Loch Ness made Andre the Giant look like Jordan. Thankfully, the character has since retreated back in to the lake of terrible ideas from whence he came.

The Shockmaster[]

If pictures tell a thousand words, you need only to look at the photo of our friend the Shockmaster above to know the story. The Shockmaster was supposed to be the mysterious partner of Sting to help him fend off his foes. But it’s pretty doubtful that anyone purposefully would have requested a guy wearing a Storm Trooper helmet and a garbage bag. The Shockmaster’s crowning moment was during his debut when he quite literally fell through a wall and flat on his face. Phenomenal. Just phenomenal.