We all have things we enjoy, even though most do not, and we know deep down that there’s something a bit wrong with our tastes.
To be fair, that’s professional wrestling fandom in a nutshell. But there are some specific things that even the most ardent graps fan would shoot you a glance for defending.
In an effort to gain material with which to mock his colleagues at a later date, our editor asked the entire team to share their own wrestling guilty pleasures.
Here’s what they had to offer. What are yours..?
Paul Benson: Easy. Wrestlemania 9.
Commonly thought to be the worst WM of all time, and let’s call a spade a spade, it was miles below the standard of what a ‘Mania should be. This was a load of drunks in a car park watching some fairly average wrestling, for the most part. But I enjoyed it immensely for what it was.
Seemingly random pairings of wrestlers having matches (I won’t call them good. But I don’t always care about workrate) in a unique setting with a whole bunch of silliness thrown in. Two Doinks. Undertaker with a vulture. A marauding giant, Bobby Heenan on a camel, Randy Savage on commentary (ALWAYS a good time), Jim Ross’ debut… what’s not to love?
And, of course, the massive swerve of Hogan winning the belt at the end, which I really, really don’t get the hate for. It was different, it was shocking and it didn’t hurt Hart or Yoko in the long run one little bit. So yeah, Wrestlemania 9. Don’t @ me bro!
Jason Auld: Always tough to narrow down what a guilty pleasure is in wrestling. I’ve gone with the thing I hate myself for loving and that’s “The People’s Elbow”.
If you gave it to a guy today, in a world full of shoot MMA submissions and incredible acrobatics, you’d get so much heat, you’d be able to cook your dinner on it. Maybe it’s the pantomime of it all, maybe it’s because I was 11 when Rock was on top but that zoom out from the hard cam, the kick and the elbow pad flying through the air, still gives me chills.
Dean Ayass: I used to love The Boogeyman. I’m sorry. It was the idea of a batshit crazy bloke who got kicked out of Tough Enough solely because he lied about his age getting over by eating actual worms. I just loved the gimmick. Awful wrestler, mind you. Appalling.
Steve Cox: The Tag Team Combination of Doom. No really, that was Doom’s long name. Geddit?
I honestly believed (at a young age) that the team of Doom 1 and Doom 2 were going to take over the universe. They were incredible. I had no idea who Ron Simmons or Butch Reed were at the time. I just loved the look, their mannerisms and simply, their devastating offense.
Of course I mostly saw them against jobbers on WCW Worldwide but DAMN, they were good. And when they had Woman as their boss, even better.
Andrew Charles: I am sure I’m not in the minority here with this guilty pleasure, but I always loved and still do the bickering and commentary between Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan.
Modern-day commentators are often slated for arguing over the action or attempting potentially-tasteless humour, but with Gorilla and Bobby it just worked.
When I think of some the classic WWE moments for me it’s the comical lines I remember straight away. For example, when The Rockers split up on ‘The Barber Shop’ and Shawn Michaels sent Marty Jannetty through the glass window, it was Bobby Heenan’s line of “Jannetty tried to jump through the window to get away from Shawn Michaels” that got me!
In my opinion Monsoon’s and Heenan’s finest hour has to be their commentary of the Royal Rumble match itself in 1992. It’s 20th century wrestling comedy gold!
Cameron Bennett: My pick is D-Generation X’s revival from 2006-09.
Yes, they were old, seemingly out of touch men acting like kids telling fart joke but damnit I love a good fart joke. It’s been 11 years but every now and then, at a family get together, when it’s late, the drinks have stopped flowing and people are getting tired you’ll hear either me or my brother shout “SEE?! I JUST KICKED STAN!”
Lewis Brown: The moment in a tag match where the guy crawls really dramatically for the tag. Out of the moment I think it’s really dumb, but then while watching I can’t help but get riled up and ready for the fresh team mate to jump in and run wild!
Pradeep Kachhala: The intro video for Wrestlemania 32 – I could watch that over and over again. Kelsey Grammer mixed in with some hip hop. Sublime!