2013: A Look Back in Horror – The 50 Worst Items of the Year

59 Submitted by on Fri, 27 December 2013, 14:37

(Tweet your opinions to Justin)

I’ve already talked about the goodness of 2013, in writing about Daniel Bryan and CM Punk’s ten best matches of 2013 for Camel Clutch Blog.

Now let’s get to the garbage. The Crap, if you will.

While all of you will get to cast your vote in the 2013 Gooker Award balloting, I’m fortunate to have the forum to expound upon the badness of the year. Make no mistake, here at WrestleCrap, we’d be doing a disservice if we didn’t sort out all of the ill-advised flops and flubs of the calendar year. Not to pile on any further, but relegating this list to just fifty items was a challenge unto itself.

This list will not be without controversy; some of you will find things you disagree with on this list, while some will argue about the placement of certain gimmicks, events, and concepts. A select minority will still rail against me for inducting WrestleMania 27 to this site almost two years ago.

You know who you are.

Otherwise, this list will do one of two things, if not both: tickle your funny bone as you recall some of the more absurd occurrences you were subjected to in 2013, or you’ll be inflamed by this list putting you through the nonsense once more. You may experience both feelings as you read along, which should allow you to sympathize with the Miz; a man who has turned from face to heel and back again in recent weeks with seemingly no provocation, other than possibly to teach audiences not to judge a bipolar wrestler. We should be tolerant, unless we have a chance to pass around a cartoon of a diva living sexually vicariously (allegedly) through a childhood hero, in which case, WWE says it’s fair game.

WrestleCrap is to present the WORST in wrestling, and thus, here now, the WORST of 2013.


50. X-Cam

What better way to kick off this list than by rehashing a concept that failed in WCW over twenty years ago? It’s novel, but the novelty wears soon enough, and it’s distracting from the match at hand. Mounted cameras are only useful if you’re trying to prove Apu is selling spoiled merchandise.

49. Nikki Bella distracts Natalya with a duck call

Before the ladies bonded over the experience of working together on a mindless reality show, Nikki Bella was apt to distract Ms. Neidhart, and confuse the crowd, by using the ol’ Duck Commander during a match. Why? Because Natalya’s the ugly ducking! It’s actually a step up from flatulence, though.

48. Bad News Barrett

Get the sense there will be mixed feelings about this. Although Barrett has the subtle smugness to pull this irregular idea off, it’s cartoonishly broad, designed for cheap heat and little else. Now if Wade had said, “I saw everyone’s drug test results and I’ve got bad news!” then THAT would be must-see TV.

47. WWE promotes No Name Calling Week

Yep. I agree that the company should encourage children not to use words to hurt the feelings of anyone they perceive to be antagonistic in their life. Follow the heroes on TV, particularly John Cena, Sheamus, CM Punk, and the Raw announcers, who would never THINK of doing such a thing.

46. Raw 20, Old School Raw feel kinda regular

Nostalgia-grabs are a modern staple of WWE’s, as older fans have shunned a product that has passed their sensibilities by. While events like the 2010 Old School Raw and the 2005 Homecoming were fun, these shows were basically the modern product splashed with an occasional hue of yesterday.

45. Antonio Cesaro yodels

The newz sites claimed at points this year that WWE found Cesaro ‘boring’. Not sure why they didn’t come to this conclusion about others they’ve heavily pushed, but Cesaro certainly isn’t boring. His strongman-of-superiority routine made him a natural villain. Screw it, let’s have em yodel!

44. Aces and Eights kidnap Kurt Angle

Even though Vince Russo had long since been removed from TNA, this hardboiled Attitude-Lite development popped up at Destination X. It took Angle a while to escape from these sinister clutches, even though just simply hopping out of the truck bed at a red light would suffice.

43. Baltimore fans chant “HUSKY HARRIS” at Bray Wyatt

Sometimes, a hip-to-the-room crowd makes the show better (see: Raw, eighth of April). Sometimes, they can diminish an awesome moment by needing to convey their inside knowledge. Yes, Bray Wyatt was once Husky Harris. Chant “CHAVO’S CADDIE” at Dolph next time, then.

42. Bo Dallas

Long-reigning NXT Champion has been criticized for a lack of personality, and has received overwhelming jeers in spite of his babyface alignment. To WWE’s credit, they’ve tweaked the character a few shades smarmier, as they apparently feel no need to take the belt off of Dallas.

41. Fandango’s push dies off

The April 8 Raw crowd playfully mocked Fandango’s music with an index-finger dance, and a fad began to hatch. Sadly, because it’s WWE, they choked the life out of the fad by claiming parentage of it, and within weeks, Fandango was just another midcarder without any direction.

40. Pancake Patterson

Eyebrow-raising alter ego of Titus O’Neil’s, playing his own ‘uncle’ for some reason or another, as he escorted Darren Young into slaughter at the hands of John Cena. Absurdist humor only works if you can connect the dots into a punchline. This was just random for the sake of random.

39. Raw commentators take a selfie

In spite of what the Be-A-Star bumpers have advised you, it is perfectly okay, at least in thought, to imagine what it would be like to pour bleach into all six of those eyes, and break in your new titanium driver on their teeth. Executing said actions would be wrong, but that’s why we have imaginations.

38. Alberto Del Rio as a babyface

Another pet-peeve to long-haul viewers: wrestlers who turn for seemingly no reason. Del Rio allegedly went face with Rey hurt and Sin Cara unreliable, because Vince wanted a strong Latin hero. With no motive for him to earn a hero’s love, the crowds went unresponsive, and he soon turned back.

37. Cobra charming

I’m sure some of you would list this higher, but the number’s appropriate, since it was the wrestling equivalent of Dante’s ex, Veronica. Apparently, Santino’s Cobra sock is controlled by flutes played by two Middle-Eastern wrestlers, whom the company has forgotten are kayfabe relatives. My head hurts.

36. Great Khali, Hornswoggle, and Natalya

It was never understood why these three came together, or why the admittedly beautiful Natalya was stuck with two human oddities. Then again, the company sees her as such, probably because she’s not a size negative-three. Rarely would scripted reality garbage be seen as a lifeboat.

35. Brad Maddox

The idea of a rogue referee  was due to be unearthed, and Maddox seemed smarmy enough for the role. Once past that, he’s lingered like the stench of death, except death can serve a purpose. Maddox seems doomed to roam the Rawscape for eternity as a voiceless spectre without form.

34. TNA releases Jesse Sorensen

Suffering a nasty neck injury while on the clock in early 2012, Sorensen recovered enough to take a token office job before his release this summer. TNA’s explanation, that he was paid too much for his position, makes a little sense, but the company that never gets good PR didn’t help their cause here.

33. Dixie Carter action figure, with “Where’s Dixie?” campaign

If they sold enough of these figures, maybe they could have justified keeping Mr. Sorensen on board. Kidding aside, Dixie would have to be pretty removed from reality to think fans would willfully participate in the silly attention grab. The depth of that cluelessness will be evident much later.

32. The Brogue Kick Hotline

It’s baffling how WWE has bungled Sheamus, a quality big-man wrestler with a unique look and a more-than-believable style. As if making him a smiling hypocrite wasn’t enough, we got damage control in the form of ‘1-800-FELLA’. Mean Gene on the WCW Hotline predicted this would flop.

31. Alberto Del Rio vs. Jack Swagger, World Title Match at WrestleMania XXIX

The match wasn’t terrible or anything, but the fact that it *happened* is baffling. One’s a lukewarm babyface who turned without cause, and the other’s a less-than-lukewarm heel. Throw in a mashed-button xenophobe angle that invokes Tea Party rhetoric, and ta-da: title unification, the argument for.

30. Jay Briscoe’s tweet against homosexual indoctrination

The then-ROH champion plainly stated that he’d ‘f–king shoot’ anyone who taught his kids that same sex marriage was okay. And you all thought the Phil Robertson quote was bad; at least the Duck Dynasty patriarch didn’t threaten violence. The quote ended up marring his hard-earned ROH title reign.

29. Jerkass Sheamus

As indicated before, WWE has seemingly had difficulty in booking Sheamus. That, or too many inept cooks have spoiled an already fine soup. Case in point: his constant cheap-shotting of heels, i.e. Mark Henry and Damien Sandow, when the heels were engaged in fair play. I mean, why?

28. Iron clad….what does it mean?

Remember in the summer of 2012 when John Laurinaitis imbued Big Show with an unbreakable contract? That was just 18 months ago. Now, Show’s fighting for his job feuding with The Authority, and actually was ‘fired’ at one point. Drew Barrymore from 50 First Dates is possibly the head booker.

27. Triple H smacks Curtis Axel during Axel’s re-debut

I have a theory about Hunter: because he was punished for the “curtain call” in 1996, and had to do jobs, nobody’s allowed to climb the ladder without being humbled, usually by him. Not that Axel is particularly exciting, but this misplaced alpha-male-ism is amusing, if awkward to watch play out.

26. Dolph Ziggler’s depush

Admittedly, Ziggler is a bit of a rogue, speaking freely from the heart on what he feels are foibles and inconsistencies with the company. It’s imperative that a company not give in to a verbal mutineer. On the other hand, the fans were basking in his World Title cash-in, and yet another hot star has gone cold.

25. Worst. Highlight Reel. Ever.

It started out terribly enough, with Barrett, Miz, and Jericho arguing over WWE Films relating to them. Then Brad Maddox came out and cut possibly the worst promo since the Diva Search. Then Michael Cole, under Vince’s gun, mocked everything and obnoxiously begged for a commercial.

24. TNA Gut Check Voting Fail

It seemed like an interesting way to debut fresh new talent. The company turned the Gut Check into a far-reaching online voting contest, and it wound up being such a farcical mess, that the online competition was scrapped. If you’re reading this, somebody probably voted for you at some point.

23. Kassius Ohno released

Ironic photo, seeing as “The Game” didn’t appear to have Chris Hero’s back. Although there could be more to the story, it seems that Hero’s physique, lithe as it is, led to Hunter making the ultimate example of him, first by benching him, then later axing him. For the time being, their loss is the indies’ gain.

22. WWE product placement

Sponsors pay the bills, I get that. WWE has fully embraced stilted meta-advertising, like they wish to corner the market on it. Hardees, Sonic, and Domino’s Pizza (with ORDER TRACKER DEMONSTRATION) have enjoyed making unquestioned fearless leader Vinnie Mac dance on the barrel.

21. Ethan Carter III

WWE castoff Derrick Bateman styled his wild mane of hair, and jumped to TNA as Dixie Carter’s monotoned nephew, Ethan. It wouldn’t have been so bad if not for the grandstanding hype for such a letdown of a character. At least it’s better than whatever the hell that “USA Guy” deal was supposed to be.

20. Los Matadores

Mostly harmless, but no less bound for induction (kinda like Repo Man), Epico and Primo were reborn this autumn as Puerto Rican bullfighters (the sport is illegal on the island), complete with Torito, a midget mascot. As bullfighters, shouldn’t they be trying to kill him in the ring?

19. Shilling of the WWE App

Have you downloaded the App yet? Here’s a full demonstration that detracts from the flow of the show. You get to watch kayfabe interviews that you can find on YouTube, and vote in lopsided surveys to determine tonight’s matches. Even if you’ve downloaded it, we still have to shill it toward those who haven’t.

18. Brooke Hogan

People took her State of the Knockouts Address about as seriously as the Boy Who Cried Wolf at the end of that tale. With Hulk gone from TNA, possibly for good, that means there’s no chance we’ll be subjected to, as comedian Louis CK wincingly called her, Hulk’s “grown-up cum” anymore.

17. Jack Swagger’s poor decision

Whether you’re for the weed or for its prohibition, you can at least agree that it’s not wise to operate a car while in an addled state. It’s also not good to do it when you’ve just been given a high-profile match at WrestleMania. Lesser men would have lost their jobs, though Swagger’s been an afterthought since.

16. Spoon with Sunny!

I know the poor woman’s apparently going through an illness at the moment, but 2013 hasn’t been her year. First, she was arrested and served nearly four months, and then resorted to offering fans a chance to have their photo taken cuddled up with her in bed. The fall from grace gets even harder to undo.

15. AJ Styles leaves TNA Wrestling as champion

The company’s fall back wasn’t there to brace any tumbles in December, as his contract expired and he wouldn’t re-sign for the pay cut. Although negotiations continue, someone in Dixieland felt giving him the belt (again) would be incentive to stay. It wasn’t, and his ascent angle was all a waste.

14. The Miz as a babyface

The undisputed champion of the Power Crappings, Miz’s baseless face turn, and utter lack of likability, made for one of the more peculiar runs in wrestling. He was perfect as an obnoxious villain, but someone saw his reality show ties and thought, “He’s a celebrity! Push him as such!”

13. Bruce Prichard, worst executive ever?

Bobby Roode was working without a contract as Tag Team Champion. DOC was getting a push, and then vanished. Rob Van Dam up and went back to WWE. VP of Talent Relations Prichard was blamed for these egregious mistakes, but his brother, Dr. Tom, says the blame goes higher.

12. The lull in Daniel Bryan’s push

In spite of all of the garbage since SummerSlam, there’s still a realistic chance Bryan rises once more. Even then, given the crowd reactions for a new and enthusiastic face in the main event scene, it’s pretty inexcusable to make him second-tier to guys who’ve been locked in for nearly a decade.

11. Tito Ortiz and Rampage Jackson

TNA became a commercial for Bellator this summer, specifically a fight that never happened. Jackson joined the Main Event Mafia, Ortiz joined the Aces after a lackluster August 1 debut, and then things fizzled when Bellator pulled Rampage from Impact programming. And the fight never happened!

10. WWE Battleground

Outside of a fun six-man tag between the Rhodes Family and The Shield, it was a lackluster, ill-developed PPV that ended with a no-contest (Orton vs. Bryan for the vacant title), a slow Punk/Ryback match, among other non-PPV worthy bouts. This got 125,000 buys, second lowest in WWE history.

9. The Bellas as babyfaces

The Bellas hold the record for ‘most turns that needed to be explained to the audience.’ Their latest, going from snotty to ‘snotty, but you’re supposed to cheer them’, comes from WWE championing them as It Girls, based on the reality show they appear on. A pair of Trish’s they ain’t.

8. Zeb Colter shoots on Glenn Beck

When Zeb and Jack Swagger’s tirades resembled conservative parody, pundit Glenn Beck railed on it. In typical WWE fashion, they wasted time hitting back at a critique, with Zeb and Jack breaking character in doing so. You know it’s lame when CM Punk tweets about how unnecessary it is.

7. Michael Strahan’s Raw appearance

The All-Pro defensive end-turned-TV host helped rekindle the misbegotten notion of Raw needing guest appearances. Memories of the badness of Jeremy Piven and Buzz Aldrin surfaced, as Strahan, The Miz, and Titus O’Neil exchanged hip-tosses after a heated bit, and then celebrated together. Yeah.

6. #askDixie

Wanting to hear from the TNA constituents, Dixie Carter fielded questions during a Twitter chat session. Being that she’s not exactly well-regarded, tidal waves of vitriol and sarcasm crashed over her, providing hilarity for those reading, especially those with little interest in her empty promises.

5. CM Punk steals urn with the ‘ashes’ of Paul Bearer

It’s pretty damning of the company that they feel the need to incorporate a man’s death into a marquee WrestleMania match, but here’s the build for Undertaker and CM Punk. William Moody’s real-life son Michael, who okayed using his father in the angle, was disgusted by the presentation.

4. Dixie Carter, heel

Certainly, it’s more believable than TNA’s headmistress being a babyface, but who’s to say that Dixie needs to appear on television? The faction of her, Magnus, nephew Ethan, and Rockstar Spud is as menacing as a trident-less Brick Tamland, and without any of the charm. But hey, she’s got a wheel!

3. Abeyance

Because WWE can’t just say “vacant.” Those ten-dollar words really impress at the Board of Directors meetings. The title was held in ABEYANCE for six weeks with just two men fighting for it, ending with a screwjob at Hell in a Cell. Then Orton moved on to Big Show, who co-opted the “YES” chants for himself.

2. The Authority

Like the 1998 Corporation, without a charismatic champion, minus Vince’s over-the-top antics, and with no Stone Cold Steve Austin to fight the power. There’s no urgency to the angle, and the fans seem burnt out on authority figures. Like Green Day sang, we “don’t need your authority.”

1. WWE Total Divas

If you watch this show for unironic reasons, and you’re not reviewing it for a website, you really have no room to say WWE should do more with its harder-working women. Vapid reality trash pandering to the “Real Housewives” audience, my heart goes out to whoever has to watch this for induction.


Written by

Justin Henry is WrestleCrap's inquiring newsman, thirsting for knowledge always. He enjoys the art of satire, as you'll find in many of his works here at WrestleCrap. Drop him a line on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/notoriousjrh) and Twitter (http://www.twitter.com/jrhwriting)
59 Responses to "2013: A Look Back in Horror – The 50 Worst Items of the Year"
  1. Peter says:

    I’m so glad for this site, as I ended up missing a lot of what was on here (and will likely miss out on what 2014 has to offer). It’s not easy to watch this stuff if you have to, and this site and its writers do an excellent job of it, likely at the expense of sanity.

  2. Mister Forth says:

    I laughed & some, & asked whom thought of the rest.

  3. "The Big Cheese" Paul Kraft says:

    Wow… I am impressed that you could remember all of this! Great job as always, Justin! You put the rest of us to shame. 🙂

  4. Hashington says:

    I agree with most of these except for the urn segment. Was it bad taste? Maybe, but it was actually entertaining unlike most of the shit on this list. It fit the characters perfectly and did a great job at setting up the Punk/Taker match.

    • Captain Puerto Rico says:

      Exactly. Entertaining and gathered real heel heat. Made Punk look like an evil bastard whom you couldn’t wait to see get his. I think most all of the rest of this list is right on, except for the fact that I completely support what Briscoe said. It’s his right to free speech and I hate to see wrestling fans, my people, becoming Godless, liberal, PC police and discriminating against proper Christian views regarding the sacred laws of marriage. Sorry to make this political, but I felt it needed to be said.

      • Justin Henry says:

        For the Undertaker/Punk entry, what really bothered me is that it seemed desperate. I understand that Punk, prior to Moody’s death, was supposed to have done some sort of “I’m God” thing to rile up Undertaker, which does sound weak, but when Moody died, they couldn’t jump on it fast enough. This is a company that touts its ‘creativity’ and ‘storytelling’ and they needed this lack-of-divine intervention to sell one of their bigger stories for WrestleMania? They have writers, they have input from talent, and they needed a man to die to tell a story within the mythological streak arc? That’s pretty sad, actually, and was the basis of my putting it fifth.

        As for Briscoe, I agree that he’s allowed to speak out if that’s how he feels. Threatening to shoot someone for the reasons he stated is what made it a dumbass move, especially as the face of a typically-progressive company.

    • Gentle Ben says:

      I agree with JH on the urn, it was more a lazy use of a real life event that the offence that made me roll my eyes.

      Though I will say as it went on I went from hating on Punk to puzzled to bellowing in laughter at how ridiculous it got. I predicted we would get Heyman all dolled up because it was the only thing left to do by that point and actually cried with maddening joy when it happened because the ‘creative’ team are that predictable.

      By the time ‘Taker got hold of the urn and paid his respect it seemed tacked-on and overall a damp squib.

  5. Mark Cardoso says:

    Funny thing… Total Divas was better than some episodes of Raw.

  6. YVRay says:

    Great list, Justin! I feel like Titus O’Neil’s vomiting on Smackdown! deserves a spot, though. That was embarassingly bad, and a potential Gooker candidate.

  7. Keith says:

    Punk stealing the urn was GREAT television. Are you kidding me? The segment where Heyman dressed as Bearer and Punk first blindsided him, then poured the ashes on him, was some of the best TV I saw all year. The crowd was hot as shit for the whole angle and match, and Punk having stolen the urn was a big part of that.

    Anyway, Total Divas is actually pretty entertaining, as trash goes, and it exists in a fascinating nether-region between reality and WWE’s unreality. And Maddox is pretty darn entertaining, on a good day.

    • Justin Henry says:

      I suppose my biggest objection to it would be that Undertaker seemed awful indignant about desecrating the remains of a man he attempted to kill nine years ago 🙂

  8. Down With OPC says:

    Saturday Morning Slam not returning.

  9. Raging_Demons says:

    Justin Henry pities me because I have to watch Total Divas for wrestlecrapradio.com! AW! I stopped half-way because that show is just so god damn hateable! The worse part is that pretty soon I have to finish the rest of the season!

    Hold me!

  10. Matt Soileau says:

    The main thing I got from the Swagger mugshot is that he is a legit 6’6″.

  11. Matt Soileau says:

    Also, to be fair, AJ Styles did sign a new TNA contract…

  12. VDM says:

    Dixie Carter might be an incompetent owner, but the “Wheel of Dixie” is best. She has her own wheel, come ON.

  13. Stephen says:

    This list needs to be longer. Just because I was so entertained while I was reading it and, before I knew it, I was already down to number 12. Good job, Justin. 🙂

    Unlike others, I agree with you on the use of the urn. There are a lot of things on this list that are actually quite tasteless and we shouldn’t be willing to defend one just because it was to build a feud rather than for comedy.

  14. RingOtaku says:

    I would have inducted TNA’s “PPV Named Special Impacts” as a result of limiting their PPV schedule yet the shows not being any different than Impact. “I’m cashing in my X-Division Title for a World title shot. On Impact? No it’s at Destination X. Which just happens to air on Spike TV. On the same time as Impact, same night. Same length of show. With commercials just like Impact” Not to mention co-opting things like Hardcore Justice for a promotion who does SO many gimmick matches on Impact as it is there was nothing unusually “Hardcore” about that episode.

    Oh and let’s not forget the backside of that. “So we canceled all these PPVs. But then we air One Night Only PPV events on those months. That are out of continuity with the show because we film them several months in advance. Who wouldn’t pay money for that?”

  15. Paul says:

    I’m going to just admit it: I kind of dig ECIII. He’s getting better as time passes, possibly thanks to Sting trying to make something out of him. I’ve seen worse.

    • DemolitionDanny says:

      One of the most ridiculous things abou twatching Raw for the last few years is Jerry Lawler pretending he is ‘down’ with modern technology and trends. Watching him take ‘selfies’ and saying ‘i downloaded that app’ just makes me a bit sick in my mouth.

      • "The Big Cheese" Paul Kraft says:

        Yes! I hate when he does this when he’s plugging the Pay-Per-View “theme songs” from some band I’ve never heard of. As if he gets home and listens to that kind of music?

  16. Jacob Gunther says:

    I agree with almost everything. However, I liked the urn thing, tasteless though it was, and I definitely think Bo Dallas as a heel is great. “They’re not saying boo! They’re saying Bo!”

  17. BaltoJim says:

    Punk on the Titantron taunting ‘Taker while doing his Harlem Globetrotters imitation with the urn – and then dropping it – was pretty damn funny.

  18. DemolitionDanny says:

    Am I the only one who liked Del Rio as a babyface? It certainly hasn’t been as bad as Miz or Zigglers runs as faces and he was pretty over while feuding with Show despite all the childish gunge dropping high jinks. What ruined it was that horrible Swagger storyline.

    The abiding memory of 2013 for me is unresolved storylines/aborted feuds. Bryan being kidnapped by the Wyatts and showing up on tv again as if nothing happened. HHH vs Big Show, HHH vs Bryan etc.

    • Hashington says:

      Yeah their main storyline seems to lack any sort of direction or progression. Bryan feuds with Orton/HHH/HBK then simply gets moved to a different feud? Show gets put in Bryan’s place for no reason whatsoever and is then quickly replaced by Cena. Was everyone else just a placeholder until Cena returned? Pretty sad if true.

  19. Josh Dionio says:

    TNA’s decision to abandon Orlando then go back there by the end of the year was something that should have been on there.

  20. Iron Smark Tyson says:

    37. Cobra charming
    I’m sure some of you would list this higher, but the number’s appropriate, since it was the wrestling equivalent of Dante’s ex, Veronica. Apparently, Santino’s Cobra sock is controlled by flutes played by two Middle-Eastern wrestlers, whom the company has forgotten are kayfabe relatives. My head hurts.

    Jinder is a Indian character and Khali is from India.

    Their not Middle-Eastern.

    • Matt Soileau says:


      Also, it’s not like Vince knows the difference either. Tiger Ali Singh, who’s Indian, and The Iron Shiek, who’s Iranian, shared entrance music. Shoot, the SAME piece of entrance music was used for The Sultan who was a middle Eastern character.

      Also, the practice of snake charming is common in not only India but places like Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Egypt. I mean, if you’re (yes, YOU’RE) going to nitpick, at least use proper grammar…

      • Gentle Ben says:

        YOU’RE a pedantic tit. Both characters are booked as Indian, Tyson was making a sensible correction.

        That aside you’re right about past WWE cultural vagueness, thought their greatest act of insensitivity was booking the Sheik as an Iraqi sympathiser. They did this not only while the First Gulf War was in progress but only a few years after Iran had come out of a decade long genocidal war with Saddam. It would be like booking a known-to-be Russian wrestler as an SS Sturmbannfuher in 1948.

  21. Ian says:

    Justin, I vote that you do one of these every year, if for no other reason other than Deal only narrows down the Gooker voting to 5-6 choices.

    If you took this list to 51 angles, I’d add in this Bad Influence/Joseph Park angle where BI keeps trying to disparage Park’s abilities, not only as a wrestler but also as a lawyer.

    • DemolitionDanny says:

      There is quite a lot of TNA stuff that could go in. The main event mafia vs Aces and eights. Taz’s heel commentary to blatantly cutting and pasting the summer of Punk storyline with a man not charismatic enough to pull it off.

      Dixie begging Hogan to stay was a pathetic scene considering what Hogan has done to that company, Stings inability to put anyone over no matter how hard he tries, the Kurt Angle concussion nonsense, I could go on.

  22. John says:

    After a year I still am not sure about how I feel about urn segment. On the one hand, that one gesture with the ashes of the urn made me much more interested in what was otherwise a very lackluster storyline. The match should have been a war with that type of build but it wasn’t. It left much to be desired. To me for them to go to such an extreme to haev such a mediocre payoff kinda sucks. I did enjoy the match but with the angle presented, it should have been more than a standard match IMO.

    On the other hand, wrestling is in a gray area compared to other forms of entertainment. Nobody is going to confuse Anthony Hopkins with Hannibal Lector. But in wrestling, especially today, most wrestlers are just portraying normal people and many are using their real names. it can be a bit blurry where the character ends and the person begins. William Moody’s real life death was being treated as a WWE character/storyline and it mirrored WWE’s handling of Eddie Guerrero’s death where the man’s death was used as the center point of storylines for almost a year. And I can agree that Moody’s death was used in desperation in what was otherwise looking to be a very mediocre build. It makes me wonder if Undertaker was not a part time wrestler, would they haev done the same with William Moody? Who knows?

    I personally was not terribly bothered but I can understand why others might be and I respect that. It takkes a lot for something to bother me on TV and usually the worst I’ll say is I think that’s in bad taste, usually to myself and move on. I wouldn’t have been as botherd by the way Eddie Guerrero’s death was played out IF they would have ended it after WM 22 after Rey won the title, giving him the happy ending instead of making his reign look like a joke and continuing to use Eddie’s death for almost a whole year later. I think if it wrapped up by WM 22, it probably would not have gotten as much hate and controversy as it did. We’ll never know.

    Sorry for the rant but I’ve always been so mixed on my feelings about the urn angle,

    • Justin Henry says:

      you’re allowed to rant at length. If you can stay on point and interesting, more power to you! And you did.

      I wouldn’t say I was ‘offended’ (you can’t offend me), so much as I rolled my eyes, like “oy, Eddie all over again”. Why have ‘creative’ when you need to rely on real life tragedy to move stories?

      • John says:

        Thanks Justin! I think most of us who post here agree on one thing if nothing else: and that is WWE is anything but creative in recent years. This storyline was looking to be a snoozefest until William Moody died and the fact it took his death to create a more interesting storyline, and they STILL could not deliver better than a mediocre ending really shows just how creative they are. Anyway love your list! It definitely brougth back some memories of 2013 in wrestling for better or worse.

  23. Rose Harmon says:

    As far as Moody is concerned, he would have probably loved the urn angle. Considering all the things that he did as Paul Bearer, it seemed like a fitting send-off. People who talk about tasteless angles forget just how tasteless wrestling can be and has been going back to the 1970s.

  24. Thomas Moffatt says:

    Hmm – RAW Christmas and the Rock v Cena WM main event would have been on my list – sorry but I can’t work out how Rock v Cena won WWE match of the year at the Slammys and Punk v Lesnar wasn’t even nominated!!! Rock/Cena just missed everything from it and desperately needed a twist

    • WaylonMercy2K14 says:

      The best part thing about that match was Scott Hall making fun of it on Twitter:
      “Going to sleep now…no wait, I kicked out.”

  25. Ollie By Golly says:

    The snake-charmer bit was pretty damn funny, IMO.

  26. Sean Bateman says:

    I thought the WWE App was gonna be higher

  27. "B-Rock" says:

    This year Gooker Award voting should just be a no contest like 2000 & 2003. Just give Zeb Colter the Gooker & we can ALL go home happy Wrestlecrap.

  28. Grand Master Hotty says:

    My take on the use of Paul Bearer’s passing in the Punk/Undertaker setup is…it was one of unfortunate necessity. Yes it was millimeters away from going over the line but at the end of the day, I feel like WWE just had to use it.

    What did they honestly have without it? CM Punk won a Fatal Four Way for a chance to face The Undertaker. Undertaker wouldn’t care who out of the four he had to face and Punk was just a competitor who got the deciding fall. There’s no antagonism there and nothing to build off of. But then Paul Bearer passes away and, would you look at that, there’s something to work with. It ain’t pretty but it’ll do.

    I hate to say it but if I was in the writing room’s brainstorming session I’d have raised my hand to move forward. Probably turn my stomach and I’d have trouble sleeping for a few nights but it was a logical move.

  29. Ashley Smith says:

    Maybe it’s because I haven’t seen WWE in months, but I’m surprised that the continuing poor booking of Ryback in PPV’s (and perhaps all round) wasn’t up there. I mean, last year they seemed to set him up as a monster, but I don’t think he’s won a PPV match most of the time his current gimmick’s been around, so he’s just seen as a guy who can’t handle the big stage. From what I’ve heard, his Wrestlemania match with Mark Henry was a perfect opportunity for a win and it didn’t happen (especially with the post match beatdown which made his loss more baffling).

    Ok, maybe it’s justified in that he isn’t the best wrestler around, but seeing the fan reaction he had a year ago, only to see him slip into the midcard for a while now is just sad.

  30. Greg Page says:

    This makes me miss the weekly countdown! 🙁

  31. Jeremy says:

    I think the Alberto Del Rio as a face run gets too much garbage thrown at it. The entire concept was handled poorly by the WWE. That was the bigger issue than Del Rio supposedly being unlikable. Look at what happened with him:

    – He turns face and runs Santa Claus over immediately making it hard for kids to like him.
    – He feuds with Show who, quite frankly, isn’t interesting enough for anyone to care about as a face or heel.
    – He feuds with a newly returned Jack Swagger who has a rocket strapped to his butt out of nowhere.
    – Fans have been wanting to cheer Dolph Ziggler for months if not years. So by putting him up against a fairly new face, it makes it that much easier for fans to cheer Ziggler and boo Del Rio.

    Honestly, Del Rio was dealt a bad hand. If they wanted to establish him as a face, they should have put him up against some easy to hate heels. Instead they wrapped him in the American and Mexican flags and had him pander to the fans in the same way that a John Cena or Sheamus does. They ruined what made him unique. Someone who has only ever been a heel in the WWE needs to be eased into a face run. The WWE did the exact opposite. They threw the title on him, made him generic, and put him up against competition that either wasn’t interested or fell into the face role better than him.

    • Justin Henry says:

      never said it was Alberto’s fault. Many of these issues are of the machine, not the parts. I maintain Miz is a perfectly acceptable heel, in spite of the fact that I’m tied to ‘hating his guts’. I don’t hate Miz at all; I just find his face character/turn/actions to be indicative of the laziness and cluelessness of that machine.

  32. TerrierChad says:

    The constant shilling of social media is quite annoying anyway but WWE have gone overboard with it to the point where it becomes over putting. Seriously, the shilling of the WWE App is only 1/16 as annoying the every 5 seconds mentions of Twitter. Kill it with fire.

  33. Will Hoefer says:

    Explain to me one good reason why a shitty reality show is worse than TNA’s real life treatment of Jesse Sorensen? Or how about Jay Briscoe’s comments on gay people?

  34. Carp says:

    I think you might want to make a last second change of putting Triple H releasing the American Wolves after just 1 match in NXT.

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