10 celebs who appeared at WrestleMania…for some reason



It’s the “Granddaddy of Them All”, the “Show of Shows”, the “Grandest Stage of Them All” and the “Showcase of the Immortals.”

It’s WrestleMania, and every year Vince McMahon & Co. aim to bring you the biggest, most spectacular wrestling show you could possibly imagine, with the tip-top wrestling talent, great musical guests and beaucoup pop culture icons meant to stay etched in your brain forever. Except, sometimes it doesn’t work like that…

For every era-defining appearance from Mike Tyson, delightfully campy Liberace dance number or pay-per-view buy-driving Donald Trump match, there are more than a few celebrity WrestleMania appearances that have, for one reason or another, receded into the annals of history.

Refresh your memory with our ten favorite below, and join us in crossing our fingers for a joint Pete Rose and San Diego Chicken appearance this Sunday at WrestleMania XXX.

Elvira at WrestleMania 2



WrestleMania 2 was held in three different locations: New York, Chicago and Los Angeles, with each city boasting their fair share of celebrity appearances. Most notable at the event, however, was Ozzy Osbourne, who accompanied his countrymen, The British Bulldogs to the ring. But the appearance of the Prince of Darkness may have caused you to forget that the Mistress of the Dark, Elvira was also in attendance, joining Jesse Ventura and Lord Alfred Hayes at commentary in Los Angeles.

What’s that? You totally remember Elvira at the event? Well, this is a Guyism list and we had to get some T and/or A in here somehow.

Morton Downey, Jr. at WrestleMania V



Morton Downey, Jr. has been largely consigned to the dustbin of television history, which is a shame, because despite his sometimes…questionable political leanings and activism, Downey more or less created the “trash TV” that would come to dominate day time television during the 1990s. Then again, he also claimed he had a psychic connection with Nicole Simpson in a desperate bid for publicity, so screw that guy.

At WrestleMania V in Atlantic City, New Jersey, Downey was set to appear on Piper’s Pit. But when Downey repeatedly blew his signature cigarette smoke in Piper’s face, the Rowdy one himself put a stop to Downey’s smoking and blustering with the liberal use of a handy fire extinguisher.

Alex Trebek at WrestleMania VII



Alex Trebek likes to act like he’s smarter than us. Better than us somehow, because he’s holding index cards with all the answers – excuse me, QUESTIONS – and pronounces things so delicately with his Canadian accent. But here’s the thing: That dude was the announcer for the main event of WrestleMania VII.

That’s right, before Hulk Hogan and then-traitor-to-America Sgt. Slaughter slugged it out in sunny Los Angeles, none other than the host of Jeopardy stood in the ring and announced the match. What is, about a billion times more exciting than the Daily Double?

Donnie Wahlberg at WrestleMania X



The year was 1994. The first George Bush was in the White House, everybody had slap bracelets despite the story of the kid who accidentally slit his wrist with one, and every girl you knew – and that one weird guy – were super, super into New Kids on the Block.

Wait…that was 1989. In 1994, the seminal boyband had shortened their name to NKOTB and Donnie Wahlberg, before realizing he could make a lucrative acting career out of running a “Bahstahn guy” gimmick, was acting as the guest ring announcer for Lex Luger vs. Yokozuna.

Burt Reynolds at WrestleMania X



Continuing the theme of past-their-sell-by celebs announcing WWF Title matches, later on in the evening at WrestleMania X, Burt Reynolds came out and did the honors for Bret Hart vs. Yokozuna.

If you’re upset about me labeling Reynolds in 1994 as past his time of relevance, know this: I’m a big Burt fan. I have White Lightning, Gator, and Hooper on DVD. But this was a full three years before he showed up in the career-revitalizing Boogie Nights, and a full 14 years after Smokey and the Bandit II. That’s the one where they have to bootleg an elephant. I repeat: Bootleg an elephant.

Lawrence Taylor at WrestleMania XI



I won’t lie, I only like sports with fixed outcomes like wrestling and MMA, so I had to look up who Lawrence Taylor was aside from the big dude who improbably beat up Bam Bam Bigelow at WrestleMania XI. Apparently, he’s a pretty big deal in football. Who knew?

It’d take a full article to unpack the impact that Taylor had by appearing in the Mania main event and beating respected veteran and head tattoo enthusiast Bam Bam Bigelow. Claims can be made that it undercut the legitimacy of wrestling, or on the other side, that it brought WWF valuable and unprecedented media attention. Whichever side of the argument you fall on though, can we all come together to appreciate that Salt-N-Pepa sang Whatta Man before Taylor came out?

Jonathan Taylor Thomas at WrestleMania XI



Lawrence Taylor was great eye candy if you were in the mood for some gridiron beefcake, but what if your tastes ran more in the Tiger Beat direction? Fortunately, WWF had you covered with none other than Jonathan goddamn Taylor goddamn Thomas. I’ll give you a moment to recover from your schoolgirl swooning.

The floppy-haired dreamboat of Home Improvement took time off from his scripted verbal sparring with Tim Allen to appear as the guest timekeeper in the HBK/Razor Ramon match. Not bad, though if it’d been us, we’d have hung JTT from the ceiling and had Michaels and Ramon climb a ladder to fetch him.

Mickey Rourke at WrestleMania XXV



Remember when we thought that Mickey Rourke was a big deal who was past his previous lifestyle problems and ready to step into the limelight as Hollywood royalty? No, not the first time. Not that time either. OK, in 2009, remember after The Wrestler?

Despite it’s depiction of professional wrestling as, well, kind of the absolute worst most brutal thing ever, WWE came around to The Wrestler after the Academy and other people who’ve probably never watched Raw or even heard of SmackDown started talking about how great it is. So, as a way to tie in Rourke’s resurgence, WWE had the guy show up at WrestleMania XXV and look approximately 1000x worse than Ricky Steamboat despite being the exact same age. Also, he punched Chris Jericho in the mouth.

Bruce Hart at WrestleMania XXVI



At WrestleMania XXVI, faithful fans of Bret Hart and his family’s wrestling legacy finally got to see the Excellence of Execution get some retribution on Vince McMahon, who infamously signed off on the Montreal Screwjob. That took the form of Hart’s family all coming out and joining him in beating the bejeezus out of a 63 year old man.

But while everyone remembers Bret and Natalya and Davey Boy’s boy, I had my eyes on the guest referee, Bruce Hart. I wish this wasn’t true – I wish it with all of my heart – but Bruce might be my favorite member of the Hart family. Clinging to his aviators and leather jacket gimmick which NEVER got over in America, insisting on going into business for himself when the focus was always meant to be on one of his brothers, Bruce holds a special, ridiculous, awesome, ridiculously awesome place in my heart.

Snooki at WrestleMania XXVII



Last I heard, Snooki was reproducing. I’m assuming asexually, because anything else is just too terrifying to consider. But before she started popping out the cast of Jersey Shore: The Next Generation, she showed up at WrestleMania XXVII, actually competing at the event.

In a mixed-tag match that saw her team up with John Morrison & Trish Stratus against Dolph Ziggler & Laycool, Snooki took to the ring and was…actually pretty good. I’m not saying she’s ready to go up against Manami Toyota or anything, but the Snookster was at least as good as Kelly Kelly in the ring. That might be damning with faint praise, but it’s all she’s getting out of me.

Aubrey Sitterson is the host of the World’s Smartest Rasslin Talk Show, STRAIGHT SHOOT. Follow him on Twitter (@aubreysitterson) for more, and check out the most recent episode of STRAIGHT SHOOT below: