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Top 10 Gimmick changes In WWE

5 hours ago By Jhon Woug

Wrestling is a somewhat unique sport in which elements of art play an important part and gimmicks are of great importance to a wrestler’s success. A good gimmick enchants people; on the other hand, a bad gimmick can stunt the progress of a wrestler. But when wrestlers transform their persona, it can result in a complete makeover of their career, and this yields a positive result. In this article, we describe ten of the greatest gimmick changes made by WWE performers that gave new life to their personalities.

  1. Dominik Mysterio: From Bland to ‘Dirty Dom’

Despite coming from the lineage of the famous wrestler Rey Mysterio, Dominik Mysterio did not start on a strong note in WWE. The wrestler was never distinguished by charisma or an interesting personality and was therefore constantly overshadowed. However, his facelift in becoming ‘Dirty Dom’ in 2022 was revolutionary. He then turned his heel and went to the faction called Judgement Day, embracing a darker and more rebellious persona. This widened his fan base and also showcased his versatility as a performer. The new gimmick enabled Dominik to garner a lot of heat from WWE fans, and he eventually emerged on the scene as one of the rising stars of WWE.

  1. Chad Gable: From ‘Shorty G’ to Wrestling Prowess

Chad Gable is a gifted wrestler who was close to ending his career with the ‘Shorty G’ gimmick. This particular character, who stressed his height, turned him into an object of mockery rather than admiration or reverence. Fortunately, Gable put aside this persona and reverted to his roots as a technically skilled wrestler. Taking influence from Triple H, Gable took the opportunity to show his true potential as an in-ring performer, and thus, his career began to climb up once more. People began to appreciate his athletic prowess, and Gable started to receive more opportunities, including chances to compete in a championship.

  1. Scott Hall: From ‘Diamond Stud’ to Razor Ramon

Before becoming a WWE legend, Scott Hall was the ‘Diamond Stud’ in WCW who stepped into the ring as a character that simply failed to connect with his fans. Signing with the WWE and changing his moniker to Razor Ramon changed everything. He took inspiration from Al Pacino’s Tony Montana from the film Scarface and created the rude and street-smart character that seemed to click very well with the fans. Hall’s charisma and high talents in the ring allied to this new character made him an overnight star. Razor Ramon became an icon of the early 90s and led to multiple Intercontinental Championships, earning him recognition as one of wrestling’s best.

  1. The Undertaker: From ‘Mean Mark’ to the Deadman

Mark Calaway’s time in WCW as ‘Mean Mark’ failed to bring out the best in him. But this change into ‘The Undertaker’ in WWF was the turning point of his career. Originally introduced at Survivor Series in 1990, the wrestling persona of an undead mortician captivated audiences and became a substantial tradition of WWE. The change in the years from Deadman to American Badass and back to Deadman showed that Callaway had the potential to adapt while maintaining the essence of The Undertaker. This longevity and the ability to reinvent himself cemented The Undertaker as one of the great legends of wrestling to date.

  1. EC3: Reinvention Outside WWE

Derek Bateman initially struggled to make an impression in WWE but performed very well in Impact Wrestling, where he went by the ring name EC3, which is short for Ethan Carter III. Deepening the conflicted persona of a cocky, privileged heel, EC3 rose through the ranks, becoming one of the company’s top stars, a many-time champion, and earning critical acclaim. This character allowed Bateman to showcase his talent and promo skills and also provided him with an opportunity to prove that he had that potential that had not been fully utilised in the WWE. His influence in Impact Wrestling and later on in the NWE demonstrates the importance of finding the right character to highlight the strengths of a wrestler.

  1. Alexa Bliss: From ‘Pixie Cheerleader’ to ‘The Goddess’

Alexa Bliss started out her WWE career as a ‘Pixie Cheerleader’ in NXT, which did not allow her the freedom to entertain her true potential. Bliss’ transition to “The Goddess” on the main roster enabled her to unleash her exceptional promo skills and solid wrestling prowess. This new persona was more confident and more ruthless, an assurance that enabled her to wrestle for and win women’s championships many times over and establish herself firmly in the women’s division of WWE. Bliss has been able to take her character to a more progressive level or arcs, such as her partnership with a twisted character like ‘The Fiend’ Bray Wyatt, to remain prominent on WWE shows.

  1. Dave Batista: From ‘Deacon Batista’ to ‘The Animal’

During the early part of his career, Dave Batista took on the character of the ‘Deacon Batista’, where he was initially a masked henchman who could not talk, a role that never facilitated the best of his abilities. Batista also saw his shift to the Evolution faction, encompassing Triple H, Ric Flair, and Randy Orton, as a means to hone his impressive, authoritative image. In the mid-2000 timeframe, allied with Ric Flair as ‘The Band,’ Edelman’s intensity and size transformed him into ‘The Animal’ Batista to capture the World Championships and a headline-worthy status at WrestleMania. The concept of gimmicks as a crucial aspect of a wrestler’s persona and their ability to maximise their potential as in-ring performers is appropriately illustrated by Batista’s evolution from before he became established as a firm fan favourite.

  1. John Cena: From ‘Doctor of Thuganomics’ to ‘Super Cena’

John Cena’s initial gimmick as the vanilla babyface heat was not going down well with fans. Though his gimmick of becoming the ‘Doctor of Thuganomics,’ a rapper who would deliver his promos in verse, was an instant hit, this character unveiled Cena’s talents and creativity, thus making him one of the biggest superstars in WWE. Having developed into the caricature of’ ‘Super Cena’, a wholesome image that was designed for a younger audience, Cena has, indeed, undergone a process of transformation. This transition helped Cena achieve mainstream fame and solidified his status as one of the biggest WWE stars ever.

  1. Hardcore Holly: From ‘Spark Plug’ to No-Nonsense Fighter

Bob Holly’s gimmicks in early WWE, including his character as a NASCAR driver turned wrestler, ‘Sparky Plugg, did not catch on with the audience. To be able to fit the Attitude Era, he sought a change in ring persona, which led him to become Hardcore Holly. This character alteration leveraged this more heightened sense of attitude in the overall era for multiple Hardcore Championship runs and significant mid-card status. Hardcore Holly’s ability to adapt and thrive in his new gimmick demonstrated his versatility and toughness, making him one of the most respected wrestlers in WWE.

  1. Farooq: From ‘Farooq Assad’ to Leader of the Nation of Domination

Farooq’s first run in the WWF came as Farooq Assad, a gladiator-inspired character the fans did not connect with. His transformation into the leader of the Nation of Domination, an armed militant group based on the Nations of Islam, significantly elevated his status. This new persona enabled Farooq to demonstrate his leadership and aggression while training new talent such as The Rock. These effective promos and dominance proved Farooq to be an essential part of the WWE midcard and eventually earned him a place in the WWE Hall of Fame.

Additional Notable Transformations

While the above ten are among the most impactful, WWE has seen numerous other gimmick changes that propelled wrestlers to fame. Here are a few more notable mentions:

Kane: From Dr. Isaac Yankem to the Big Red Machine

Glenn Jacobs, before he became the well-established Big Red Machine, had gone through many personas that flopped, including Dr. Isaac Yankem, the dentist psychopath. Changing into Kane, who is the brother of The Undertaker, gave him a dark and compelling character, which has been one of the company’s staple personalities. Kane has been active in WWE for decades; he successfully unmasked and even minorly incorporated corporate roles at some points in WWE, all of which kept him relevant to the scene.

Triple H: From the Connecticut Blueblood to the Game

Triple H, at the beginning of his WWE career, was featured as an arrogant aristocrat known as Hunter Hearst Helmsley. While this was at least somewhat effective, it was not really the most efficient at utilising his potential. His change to Triple H, The Game, was the ideal segue towards the peak of his career. Triple H soon adopted a more ‘cut throat’ and ruthless attitude and started to pose as a more aggressive wrestler, hence moving to the main event status and picking up numerous titles in WWE. Over time, he became one of the key figures in the ‘Attitude’ Era. The transformation that Triple H was able to pull off was not easy, but it showcased his adaptability and his ability to reinvent himself, which thus ensured his survivability in the business.

Becky Lynch: From Irish Lass Kicker to The Man

The ‘Irish Lass Kicker’ gimmick that Becky Lynch first adopted was fairly popular, but the moment she got the ‘The Man’ persona, she got hit with overnight popularity. Thus, changing for a rebellious and more confident personality, Lynch became the main face of WWE women’s wrestling. She inherited the new character with approval from the audience and, as a result, underwent moments in the history of wrestling, including being the first-ever woman to main-event WrestleMania 35. Thanks to this, true talent and the ability to communicate with the audience were recognised as the key points of a successful and memorable gimmick.

Bray Wyatt: From Husky Harris to The Fiend

Bray Wyatt was initially introduced in the WWE as Husky Harris, but he did not cut an impressive figure with that character. He realised that the gimmick he had been using, Bray Wyatt, required a different outlook, and he thus became The Fiend. He explained the concept of innovation and managed to draw attention with the story he told of wrestling. Coined as ‘The Fiend’, this aspect of Wyatt, in addition to the blended detective-horror identity, made Wyatt one of the most interesting characters in the WWE. Due to this evolution, audiences embraced a well-developed and multi-layered persona to capture their imagination.

Conclusion

The buildup of gimmicks is a very integral factor that defines the persona of a wrestler in the wrestling ring. First of all, these transformations lead to the renewal of professional careers at WWE, while the second effect implies the elevation of the degree of audience engagement as well as the quality of the narratives presented. Major or minor gimmick alterations can bring out the best in a wrestler, creating a dynasty for the wrestler and contributing to the success and growth of the wrestling business. These show that change and transformation are some of the aspects that play a big role in the progress of the career of professional wrestling and the presentation of the show in a way that those performing it as well as the fans would be satisfied.

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