When famous rapper Bad Bunny appeared in the WWE in 2021, he impressed the Professional Wrestling world with his high flying antics. However, not every celebrity appearance has gone as swimmingly, and some leave fans downright perplexed as to how they happened in the first place.
Whether it was reality stars like Snooki, or fictional characters like The Muppets, Pro Wrestling history is littered with absolutely bonkers celebrity cameos. Though they all feel a little strange to die-hard fans, some celebrity cameos were just too weird for audiences to stomach, and they have become an infamous part of the sport’s legacy.
10 Jon Stewart
The beloved longtime host of The Daily Show, Jon Stewart, has proven to be ratings gold whenever he makes an appearance. However, his two-year stint as host of WWE’s SummerSlam event had its ups… and very notorious downs. Initially siding with John Cena in his feud with Seth Rollins, the comedian turned heel and planted a chair into Cena’s ribs in a shocking double-cross.
The move was not a very popular one, and fans didn’t want to see a celebrity get so involved with an important storyline like the Rollins/Cena feud. Stewart’s popularity also made it very difficult for fans to hate him, and his reputation as a comedian made a heel turn seem forced and unnatural.
9 Cassandra “Elvira” Peterson
Elvira is not only one of the most influential TV horror hosts of all time, but she has grown to be a beloved cultural icon as well. Her immense popularity didn’t make her guest commentary appearance at WrestleMania II any less strange though, and it is a head-scratching part of the event’s legacy.
Fortunately for fans, Peterson is a naturally charismatic performer, and her appearance alongside Jessie “The Body” Ventura was quite funny. Though she was only a small part of a much larger event, Elvira’s oft-forgotten commentary stint is still one of the oddest WrestleMania celebrity moments.
8 Jay Leno
The ill-fated promotion WCW was known for doing whatever it took to beat their WWE competition in the ratings. Gimmicks abounded in the “Monday Night Wars” era, and celebrity appearances were always good for an easy ratings boost. Still, Jay Leno’s 1998 appearance at the Pay-Per-View Road Wild was stuffed with baffling booking decisions.
Leno’s love of cars and motorcycles made him a perfect choice to appear at the biker-themed event, but choosing to put him in the ring with the promotion’s biggest stars was a blunder. Non-Wrestlers taking on seasoned veterans makes all parties look bad, and Leno’s fumbling defeat of Hulk Hogan didn’t do anyone any favors.
7 Pete Rose
Former athletes have always been a peripheral part of Pro Wrestling history, and the bigger the star, the bigger the audience’s reaction when they show up. There is no denying that Pete Rose is one of the greatest baseball players to ever live, but his string of WWE appearances didn’t cast the disgraced former All-Star in a good light.
Pestering monster big-man Kane, Rose found himself on the wrong side of the Big Red Machine’s finishing maneuver on several occasions. Involving Rose in the WWE was a smart move, but the way he was booked was downright odd. In the end, Rose’s three WrestleMania appearances did little to tarnish the event’s positive reputation.
6 Alice Cooper
Horror movie inspired rocker Alice Cooper’s decades-long career has taken him from the stage to the screen, and even an appearance at Pro Wrestling’s biggest event. Accompanying Jake “The Snake” Roberts to the ring for his match with Honky Tonk Man at WrestleMania III, Cooper babysat Robert’s beloved python Damian while he dispatched his opponent.
The pair were a perfect match for the event, but it was still strange seeing the shock rock hitmaker show up at a family-friendly wrestling show. Though his reputation has cooled off somewhat with time, 1980s era Alice Cooper still had the power to give parents nightmares.
Professional Wrestling’s heyday was so popular that even fictional characters often got in on the action. WCW has featured actors, former athletes, and a host of other real people, but in 1990 the cybernetic police officer Robocop made an appearance at the Capital Combat event. Coming to the aid of Sting, the lumbering peace officer saved his friend from the advances of the evil Four Horsemen stable.
The entire stunt was a promotional effort for the upcoming film Robocop 2, but fans were mostly left in disbelief. Not only was the appearance a bad idea from a creative standpoint, but it failed in execution and the clunky suit practically fell off of the actor. While it may have led a few curious viewers to tune in, it was not an appearance befitting one of the greatest action films of the 1980s.
4 The Muppets
The WWE’s effort to maintain a family-friendly image in recent decades has led to a host of strange booking decisions regarding celebrity guests. While fictional characters have had a place in wrestling history, The Muppet’s 2011 Monday Night Raw appearance was one of the weirdest of all.
With a whole host of puppet characters invading the show, Miss Piggy and Kermit rubbed shoulders with established stars like The Miz in strange backstage segments. Though The Muppets are a beloved comedy institution, they weren’t quite the right fit for a Pro Wrestling show. While most fans know that wrestling is a work of fiction, seeing wrestlers talk with puppets was asking fans to suspend their disbelief too far.
Over a decade before WWE’s guest host era brought on a cavalcade of celebrity guests onto their flagship show, WCW Nitro was invaded by an icon of the horror genre. To advertise the upcoming release of Bride of Chucky, the killer doll made a frightening cameo in a hilariously botched segment with wrestler Rick Steiner.
Slinging some of his famous one-liners, the murderous toy calls out Rick Steiner from the safety of a pre-taped segment. As if the appearance wasn’t odd enough, Steiner missed his cues, and his prepared dialogue with Chucky fell into shambles quickly. Fortunately for fans, Chucky only remained on screen, and never made a physical appearance amongst their favorite wrestlers.
The cultural phenomena that was The Jersey Shore wasn’t long-lasting, but it made instant stars of all of its characters. One of the show’s most dynamic personalities, Snooki, was tapped to host Monday Night Raw in 2011. However, her real wrestling claim-to-fame came when she participated in a six-person tag match at WrestleMania XXVII.
While she was in the ring with competent performers, it was still very difficult for fans to see a reality TV star taking on established wrestlers. The spectacle of that year’s event was already dim, but fans absolutely rejected Snooki’s tag-match victory over Dolph Ziggler and LayCool. Stars like Snooki have a large fanbase, but it was clear that the Jersey Shore and WWE fandoms didn’t necessarily overlap.
1 David Arquette
Actor David Arquette was at the height of his fame in the year 2000, and he used his position to muscle his way into professional wrestling. A life-long fan of the sport, Arquette made an appearance on WCW Thunder to promote his film Ready to Rumble. However, Arquette quickly became wrapped up in an ongoing storyline that eventually led him to win the WCW World Heavyweight Championship.
In its dying days, WCW was desperate to boost ratings, but slapping the prestigious world title on an untrained actor wasn’t a smart move. Fans resoundingly rejected Arquette’s reign as champion, and it further devalued the title that had been tossed around with great frequency at the turn of the millennium. Though it was far from the nail that sealed WCW’s coffin, Arquette’s cameo-turned-title-run was a bad omen for the troubled promotion.
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