While professional wrestling might seem like all fun and games (as seen the Ten Silliest Wrestler Outfits), there have been and still are some rather frightening individuals who have entered the squared circle. What better time is there than the Halloween season to look at the Ten Scariest Wrestlers in history?
You can’t have a scary wrestler list without “The Deadman From Death Valley” being featured. Since his debut at the World Wrestling Federation’s (Entertainment) 1990 “Survivor Series”, The Undertaker has become of staple of fear in the company. The man is known for his goose bump-creating entrance music (featuring the funeral gong) as much as his uplifting choke slams and Tombstone Piledriver finisher that put down the likes of Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, The Rock, and “Stone Cold” Steve Austin.
What really makes The Undertaker scary is his ability to survive through unusual conditions. Since his debut, The Undertaker almost had his face crush by a 500 pound man, set on fire, and buried alive; yet he keeps coming back to assert his dominance (usually around “Wrestlemania” season) and prove that no man strikes fear in the hearts of wrestlers like The Undertaker.
Doink the Clown
Time has a way of making people forget the origins of certain wrestlers. Doink the Clown represents a misguided perception of history as most fans still see him as, well, a clown. In reality, Doink the Clown preyed on people’s fear of clowns (coulrophobia). Even if you weren’t afraid of the painted wrestler, his harassing actions of throwing water and laughing manically in your face would put a little fear that all clowns could have a sick, twisted sense of humor just like Doink. Hey, Rob Zombie made two horror movies featuring a deranged clown (and lets not even talk about Stephen King’s “It”) – so there is link between being a clown and a psychopath.
Following his big brother The Undertaker’s footsteps is none other than Kane. Being controlled by his real father, and The Undertaker’s former manager, Paul Bearer, Kane made his WWF(E) debut almost seven years after his brother’s, attacking The Undertaker to begin a family feud that would last for years. Their battles weren’t clashes between two titans, but a supernatural war of attrition that showcased Kane’s ability to control fire. The Undertaker wasn’t the only target as Kane gleefully set stagehands and even announcers on fire just to make a point that he was stronger than his big brother.
As the years progressed, Kane’s mental stability wavered to the point no one could know when Kane would lose his mind and start attacking people for no real reason. And there are few things scarier than a seven foot, mentally unstable fire starter with family issues.
Total Nonstop Action wrestling’s resident “Monster” has been somewhat justifiably compared to World Wrestling Entertainment characters Kane and Mankind thanks to his attire and attitude. Yes, Abyss’s mentally unstable. Yes, Abyss wears a mask. But the fact is “The Monster” Abyss is a different animal. What makes him standout from his counterparts is Abyss’ masochistic nature. Though Abyss is a large man with incredible power and unusual agility, his ability to put himself through the most torturous matches willingly made people fear him.
From bouts featuring thousands of thumbtacks to happily introducing glass shards to his opponent’s back, Abyss has no qualms in the tables turning against him as his body is torn asunder by the plunder he brought to the ring in hopes of putting his opponents down.
There have been many imitators, but only one original. And The Sheik (now dubbed “The Original” Sheik because of so many Sheik wannabes) was hardcore before hardcore wrestling became cool. Similar to other territorial wrestlers of his day, The Sheik caused others to seek out to find out what all the fuss was about. Seeing people being stabbed with pencils and The Sheik throwing a fireball made the Syrian grappler become a sensation across the world when many others struggled just to gain recognition in their home state. As said above – many have tried, but few have succeeded in becoming a hardcore wrestling force that scared anyone he encountered (fans or wrestlers alike).
Sometimes the image of someone you wouldn’t want to meet in a dark alley is skewed when you see someone so dangerous looking, yet unsuspecting that it changes your thinking pattern. Luna Vachon, the daughter and niece of two crazed wrestlers nicknamed “Butcher” and “Mad Dog” respectively, helped change the view of a women’s wrestler in the United States.
With her half shaven, painted head, raspy voice and obvious well-conditioned body, Luna became a walking, talking death machine for anyone who stepped into the squared circle with her; man or woman. Headlocks were replaced with eye rakes; sleeper holds with blatant chokes. Nothing was illegal when Luna entered a ring. Luna was definitely not the type of woman you’d take home to meet your mother out of fear that if Mom said something the wrong way, you’d be pulling the spitfire Vachon away from a battered carcass.
1992 came in fruition and so did the first true master of voodoo in the World Wrestling Federation. Somewhat reminiscent of Baron Samedi, this master of black magic carried a skull to the ring that smoked while controlling the arena’s lights. But what made Shango truly scary was his ability to hex people and cast spells that caused great pain to the person of Shango’s interest. No better example of that occurred when Shango cursed the seemingly unbreakable Ultimate Warrior, causing him to vomit profusely and even expel a blood-like substance from his head without being touched.
Knowing what the man being the Papa Shango character would become years later, one must wonder if his ability at black magic made pimping a lot easier.
No matter when you saw Kevin Sullivan, a certain level of fear came from your initial belief that in some way, shape or form this compact grappler was actually the Devil. The self-proclaimed “Prince of Darkness” terrorized the Mid-Atlantic and Florida areas throughout the 1980s and early 1990s. Sullivan’s demeanor was simplistic, yet grandiose. Simple actions such as painting his face with various designs helped showcase himself as an individual not of this world.
To make matters worse for potential opponents, Sullivan had a way of warping the minds of others. From his Army of Darkness faction (complete with snake handlers) looking to take down Dusty Rhodes to creating the Dungeon of Doom in an effort to end Hulkamania, Sullivan rarely didn’t have someone following him to complete his twisted mission. Oh, even wrestlers have gone on record to say they believe Sullivan was/is a Devil worshiper. Though Sullivan has denied such claims, his incredible persuasive ways were as scary as the Devil himself.
Abdullah the Butcher
“The Madman from the Sudan” wasn’t so “mad” when he first started wrestling. In fact, Abby was nothing more than a martial artist turned wrestler looking for his big break. In the mid 1960s, Abdullah distinguished himself from other Canadian wrestlers by utilizing a chair to beat his opponent senseless (something completely uncommon at the time). To the shock of many, hitting someone with a chair would be the least offensive thing Abdullah the Butcher would do.
Using almost anything not nailed down from the ring bell to a fork hidden in his boot, Abby love to not only hurt his opponents, but also draw as much blood as possible (including his own). Even more disgusting was his penchant for eating inedible items like announcers’ neckties, cardboard boxes, and even a live chicken head. Sometimes “scary” isn’t a good enough definition for certain people.
They always say it’s the ones you least suspect. If there’s any person on this list that perfectly fits the previous statement it’s “Classy” Freddie Blassie. But this “Hollywood Fashion Plate” wasn’t always “Classy”. In fact, the late Blassie was known around the world as “The Vampire” for his penchant of drawing his opponent’s blood and gnawing on the foe with his file-sharpened fangs. But Blassie did something that no other wrestler could ever do – give fans heart attacks … literally!
Blassie’s visceral actions would disturb Japanese fans so much that any time his face appeared on TV it would sicken someone to the point their heart couldn’t take it. Blassie really scared more people than Freddy Krueger, Michael Myers, and Jason Voorhees combined.