“The Reject” Shannon Moore

ECW on Sci-Fi featured a lot of kooky stuff in its early months, from zombies to vampires to exhibitionists. But one of the more authentic new characters who caught viewers’ attention that summer was a punk rock misfit.

In a backstage vignette, a distorted guitar riff accompanied the unveiling of ECW’s newest wrestler. Dressed in chains and covered in tattoos, this rebellious outcast looked to set ECW on f—

—oh God, it was Shannon Moore! Ha!

Yes, the same Shannon Moore WCW fans knew from 3 Count, the cruiserweight boy band…

…and whom WWE fans knew as Matt Hardy’s MF’er…

…was suddenly the punkest of punkers.

Pardon me if I doubted his punk rock bona fides.

(Did he even listen to Huey Lewis?)

Truth be told, Moore had tried out the gimmick during his brief run in TNA…

…calling himself “The Prince of Punk”…

…but in WWE’s ECW, he was dubbed, “The Reject”. That’s called, “tempting fate”, folks.

While it took fans exactly eight seconds to lose interest in the character…

…WWE kept airing the vignettes every week…

…always ending with the babyfaced Shannon Moore turning his head and looking straight at the camera…


…for an uncomfortably long time.

And every week, Moore looked as if his older sister’s girl friends had taken him to Hot Topic and given him a makeover.

Part of you wanted to laugh, while the other part dreaded Mom going ballistic when she got home.

The Reject Shannon Moore
“Look Mom. I’m a punk wockew!”

Hmmm… Punk, punk… Where have I heard that word before?

Oh right—this guy.

In an all-time case of bad timing, the “Prince of Punk” had jumped to WWE just as they were debuting a much more famous and respected Punk, CM.

The same night CM Punk debuted at the Hammerstein Ballroom to unanimous cheers, soundly beating former ECW champ Justin Credible…

…Shannon Moore took on former ECW journeyman CW Anderson in a dark match.

There were many reasons for the brutal New York crowd to dump on poor Shannon (e.g. His name was Shannon)…

…but Moore didn’t take kindly to it either way. In fact, he grabbed the mic and dismissed the crowd as Internet marks.

As you might have guessed, this only made things worse for The Reject, whom the crowd rejected so badly…

(See, I told you)

…that Vince McMahon had to change the finish on the fly. The big winner in all this was CW Anderson, who pinned Moore to earn his first victory in the new ECW.

The next week, there was no Reject vignette. The plug pulled on his planned push…

…Moore re-surfaced the following week, where he appeared to wear a strapless dress.

While the leather-dress-and-eye-shadow look may have looked terrifying on Perry Saturn, it was laughable on the boyish Moore.

And that wasn’t even the punishment part! Now, every week, Moore would look into the camera whisper some inane declaration.

Question authority

Fight the power

The system is oppressive

It’s not a phase, Mom!

Worse yet, these vignettes would usually air right before CM Punk matches.

The last straw was when Moore goofily declared, “I am the Prince of Punk”…

…and, having run out of punk rock platitudes, quoted his old boy-band idol, Justin Timberlake:

“…and I’m bringing sexy back.”

While viewers puzzled over this non sequitur, in walked CM Punk (the man who was bringing sXe back). Punk gave Moore a thorough look over…

…and told him right to his face, “You’re a poser.”

Then he smacked him right in the face. With this bitch slap, Punk single-handedly (literally) ended The Reject’s chances in WWE…

…burying the character in a matter of seconds. I mean, The Reject looked like he was about to cry.

The following week, Shannon Moore wrestled Punk in his first televised match back. His “Reject” character was dead on arrival…

…but at least Tazz had praise for his mohawk, marveling at Moore’s “erect head”.

“Okay…” said Joey Styles. “Well, speaking of which, there’s Kelly…”

I won’t comment on that exchange except to note the obvious, which is that Kelly Kelly never had a mohawk.

sXePhil beat Shannon Moore two weeks in a row, setting the tone for Moore’s whole ECW run.

After going 0-6 in the Land of Extreme, The Reject headed to Smackdown

…where he formed a team with country boy Jimmy Wang Yang.

Ultimately, Shannon Moore wound up in TNA, where he got to be his true self, stupid hair and all.

I guess it wasn’t just a phase.

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