There have been countless celebrities who have made appearances in the wrestling industry since it became normalized in the mid-80s. Many of these celebrities provided a jolt of entertainment, and some even looked like they belonged – look no further than Bad Bunny’s incredible performance at WrestleMania 37.
On the other hand, many of these appearances seemed forced and unnatural, as the celebrities involved did not belong anywhere near a wrestling ring. While many of these instances have become forgotten, a few others are memorable due to their sheer infamy alone.
10 Jay Leno
WCW decided to have talk show icon Jay Leno make his in-ring debut in the main event of the 1998 Road Wild pay-per-view on August 8, 1998, in an attempt to boost their ratings. He teamed up with DDP, and the two men defeated Hulk Hogan and Eric Bischoff in a deplorable 15-minute affair.
The foolish appearance failed to impress and did nothing but invalidate professional wrestling after Hulk Hogan shamelessly writhed in pain when Leno locked in a devastating armbar. While the tides were already turning in WWE’s favor in the Monday Night Wars, this incident allowed them to further the gap between the companies.
9 Kim Kardashian
Kim Kardashian was the hostess for WrestleMania XXIV, which was well-received by critics and fans alike. On the other hand, the company’s choice to use the reality TV star (who clearly knew nothing about wrestling) as the hostess for the most important night of the year was not nearly as popular.
She was not even the most famous celebrity to make an appearance that night, as Snoop Dogg was at ringside for the Bunny Mania Lumberjill match. Furthermore, she was also not the most relevant celebrity to make an appearance that night, as Floyd “Money” Mayweather knocked out Big Show in one of the night’s main events.
8 Drew Carey
The Royal Rumble has had countless surprising appearances over the years, but Drew Carey making his wrestling debut during the 2001 match was arguably the most random. There were probably many people who had no idea who he was, and those who knew him probably referred to him as “the guy from Price is Right.” With that said, absolutely no one wanted to see him in the match.
Not only did Carey look out of position in the wrestling ring, but he also looked like a middle-aged high school gym teacher whose main source of physical activity is walking to the break room to get a donut in between classes. On a related note, that tracksuit is ridiculous.
7 Kevin Federline
People say that you should distract yourself and keep busy when going through a breakup, and Kevin Federline did just that when he made his WWE debut when he was in the midst of a messy divorce with Britney Spears. He began a heated feud with John Cena, who he challenged to a match on the New Year’s Day edition of Monday Night Raw, which he won with the help of Johnny Nitro and Umaga.
Despite the multiple Attitude Adjustments that he endured after the contest, Federline can still say that he came out victorious in his rivalry with the Doctor of Thuganomics and finished his wrestling career with an undefeated record of 1-0. We can all hope that it stays that way.
6 Grumpy Cat
Grumpy Cat, whose real name is Tardar Sauce, became an internet sensation in 2012 due to her ill-tempered appearance. She showed great range and was featured on Good Morning America, American Idol, and even hosted an episode of Monday Night Raw on November 17, 2014.
The host was well-received backstage, as just about every wrestler flocked to take pictures with the internet meme, but fans felt differently about her role on the program. She failed to provide any added entertainment to the show, and this was one of the last appearances that she made. She passed away in 2019, but her memory lives on in the hearts and minds of her 10 million followers on Instagram and Facebook combined.
5 Jon Stewart
Unlike most celebrity hosts, Jon Stewart, who hosted the 2015 SummerSlam pay-per-view, greatly impacted the show. Stewart helped Seth Rollins retain his World Heavyweight Championship against John Cena in the show’s main event after he hit The Doctor of Thuganomics with a steel chair, which he later said was to prevent him from breaking Ric Flair’s championship record.
The excitement surrounding the talk show host was already minuscule, and the interference in the incredible contest caused Stewart to receive go-away heat. While the ending of the main event may have put a bit of a damper on the bout, it did not prevent it from being an instant classic.
Jersey Shore star Snooki began a feud with Vickie Guerrero when she served as the guest hostess for Monday Night Raw on March 14, 2011. She also appeared at WrestleMania XXVII, where she defeated LayCool with John Morrison and Trish Stratus by her side.
Nobody wanted to see the reality TV star on WWE television, and her appearances were received poorly by fans and critics alike. She may have received WWE’s A-Lister of the Year Slammy Award, but that is not saying much when you consider the company would do anything for clout.
3 Miss Piggy (& The Rest Of The Muppets)
The Muppets were promoting their upcoming movie when they hosted Monday Night Raw on October 31, 2011. The younger WWE audience may have loved the Muppet gang’s appearance, but just about everyone else loathed their presence. Outside of a few goofy monologues, they added very little to the entertainment value of the program.
There were a few funny moments throughout (thanks to Santino Marella), and the show was not as bad as it could have been considering the ridiculousness of the hosts, but it seems like a safe bet to assume they will not be returning to WWE television anytime soon.
2 Jeremy Piven
Jeremy Piven and Ken Jeong served as the guest hosts for Monday Night Raw to promote their upcoming film The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard on August 3, 2009. It was clear that neither actor (Jeong at least skirted by with his incredible sense of humor) had any knowledge of the wrestling industry, and their appearance was one of the worst of the celebrity guest host era.
If the company decides to bring back celebrity hosts this summer, they will certainly hope to find someone with a bit more knowledge of wrestling to promote SummerFest.. er, SummerSlam next month.
1 David Arquette
Out of all the deplorable storylines that WCW attempted to regain position in the Monday Night Wars, their choice to have David Arquette win the World Heavyweight Championship was arguably the most unforgivable. Arquette, who recently returned to the world of professional wrestling with his film You Cannot Kill David Arquette, feuded with Eric Bischoff and aligned with DDP during his short stint with the company.
While he may have only held the belt for 12 days before losing it at the Slamboree pay-per-view (which he headlined), the reign was more than enough to nullify so much credibility that the championship previously had.
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About The Author
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Jerry Markarian is an avid sports fan who has had a passion for writing for as long as he can remember. He is a recent college graduate who has strong aspirations in becoming a successful sports journalist, and currently lives in Chicago, IL. He feels eternally grateful that he was able to land an opportunity with an organization that is as respected as TheSportster so early in his writing career.
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