wrestling / Columns

Top 7 Scariest Male Wrestlers

October 12, 2023 | Posted by Steve Cook
Bray Wyatt Clash of Champions Image Credit: WWE

If there’s one thing that 411mania.com readers love as much as pro wrestling, it’s horror movies. I’ve noticed this through the years via which Movies/TV writers stick around. It’s the ones that write about horror movies, vampires, werewolves, zombies or whatever. That’s the space that 411mania is in, and I’m ok with it.

October is the month where we embrace the scary. We all want to decorate & celebrate the spooky & scary leading up until Halloween. Today, we will count down the seven scariest male wrestlers of all time. I will admit a bias as an older person, as it’s tougher for kids these days to scare me.

7. Kamala

The country of Uganda found itself in the news during the 1970s mostly due to the actions of its leader at the time, Idi Amin. Even by the low standards of that era’s collection of third-world despots, Amin stood out from the pack with his viciousness and lack of humanity. There were even reports that Amin was a proponent of cannibalism. Pro wrestling has never been shy about using current or not-so-current events to come up with characters, so it’s no surprise that a Ugandan Headhunter emerged on the scene in the early 1980s.

Kamala was a giant of a man, and came off as somebody completely uncivilized. He didn’t utilize traditional wrestling moves, opting for punches, kicks & the occasional splash. He wasn’t really sure how to pin people, rolling them back & forth on the mat. The bell didn’t seem to mean much to Kamala either, as he would often attack after the bell and climb the ropes. Kamala might look a bit silly to wrestling fans of this era, but during his peak he was one of the scariest competitors out there.

6. Jake “The Snake” Roberts

Most people get a little worried in the presence of snakes, or do whatever they can to avoid them. Some say it goes back to the Garden of Eden, when Eve was tempted by a snake. Or maybe it’s just because snakes slither around, hiss a lot and have no hesitance when it comes to biting. I’m not sure about all that, but I do know that there wasn’t a more appropriate nickname for Jake Roberts than “The Snake”, and not just because it rhymed with his first name.

Like a snake, Roberts would slither around in the background and sneak up on you. His DDT finishing move proved as lethal as a snake bite. He lived up to the old saying “Never trust a snake.” Sure, there were times when Jake would rank among fans’ favorite wrestlers, but he would always live up to his true nature before too long. An unsettling individual, to say the least.

5. Abdullah the Butcher

The Madman from the Sudan was one of those guys that traveled from territory to territory and from country to country scaring the bejeezus out of fans and making them fear for the lives of their favorite wrestlers. He had no regard for any rules, all he cared about was carving people up with his fork or whatever else was handy at the time. When Abdullah was in town, wrestling fans knew they were in for a bloodbath.

Abby’s unique look probably would have kept him from getting a second look from 21st  century promoters, but certainly played a role in his success as a wrestler that struck fear in the hearts of fans everywhere.

4. Kevin Sullivan

Few things were scarier to folks in the Bible Belt than devil-worshippers. The idea of such people amongst them gave God-fearing wrestling fans the willies. Now, I’m pretty sure Kevin Sullivan never explicitly stated his loyalty to Satan, but he used plenty of other odd sounding names and words to give people the idea.

Sullivan’s Army of Darkness terrorized Florida & other areas of the Southeast, most notably feuding with Dusty Rhodes, Blackjack Mulligan, Mike Graham and assorted members of their real & kayfabe families. What Sullivan may have lacked in the size department, he made up for in overall creepiness.

3. Bray Wyatt

Bray had two periods where he was the scariest wrestler on the face of the planet. One was when he was the leader of the Wyatt Family, with Luke Harper, Erick Rowan & whoever else they had on their side at that point. Might have been Braun Strowman, or Randy Orton, or Daniel Bryan. The Bryan period was especially unsettling, as the Wyatts beat the poor man down into being part of their group. Which made Bryan’s turn against them even better, and a key part of his WrestleMania XXX build.

Later on, Bray had his Firefly Funhouse and his alter-ego The Fiend, which created a whole new level of terror for other WWE Superstars. There was a brief respite when Bray got randomly released, but once he came back things were back on. There was Uncle Howdy, a Mountain Dew Pitch Black match, things got real hairy. I keep hearing that WWE will revive certain storylines in honor of Bray, but I don’t think they’ll have the same effect without his presence.

2. Kane

You could make a really good case for Kane to top this list just based off his exploits during 2003. After losing his mask in a match against Triple H at the end of a feud where we learned that young Kane was apparently something of a necrophiliac (don’t blame me, I didn’t write 2003 Raw), the Big Red Machine lost his everloving mind. Here are some of the things he did during this time period:

-Set Jim Ross on fire
-Tombstoned Linda MaMahon
-Electrocuted Shane McMahon’s testicles
-Helped bury his half-brother alive

That’s not even a complete list of the atrocities Kane committed during the second half of 2003, and we haven’t even mentioned other things the man did to his own half-brother through the years, such as placing him in a casket and setting the casket on fire. Or the time Kane chokeslammed him through the casket containing their mother’s remains. I’m not sure I have enough time to recount all of the horrible acts Kane committed over the years. So I’m going to link two incredible articles from our longtime friend Mathew Sforcina covering most of Kane’s WWE existence.

Evolution Schematic Part 1
Part 2

It’s hard to believe that any city elected this psychopath mayor twice, isn’t it? Even a city in Tennessee, for heaven’s sake! I know there are lower standards down there, but Good God Almighty!

Honorable Mention: Doink The Clown

I don’t have a fear of clowns. Hell, back in the day I was a Juggalo. Went to a couple of Insane Clown Posse shows that forever ensured my love of Faygo even if though I grew past the music. Apparently, there are a good number of people that fear clowns for whatever reason. The WWF went into that subgenre with an evil clown debuting during late 1992. Doink had a pretty awesome theme song and had a knack for being creepy as all hell. Once Matt Borne got replaced in the role, Doink could be a happy go lucky babyface. I don’t think Matt Borne had that in him.

Honorable Mention: Waylon Mercy

This was the prototype for early Bray Wyatt. Creepy guys wearing Hawaiian shirts was always an avenue the WWF/E would exploit at some point. Waylon killed it in the promos leading to his debut, but his body didn’t hold up.

1. The Undertaker

The one advantage Undertaker has over his half-brother? HE STARTED THE FIRE! Undertaker was glad to let his apparently deceased brother take the heat for it as long as possible, since he assumed the boy was dead. Prior to that business becoming public knowledge, he debuted in the WWF as the scariest wrestler fans had seen in quite some time.

Most of us are scared of death, as death is the great unknown and we all fear what we don’t know. Religions try to teach us what death entails. Some folks buy into that. They think they’ll go to heaven, whatever that means. Many humans seem convinced that they’ll go to heaven no matter how they treat other people or whatever they do as long as they go to church or vote a certain way. Some are afraid they’ll go to hell no matter what they do, whatever that means. Raised as a Catholic, I know that path all too well. Others think there is no afterlife. Then there’s some that believe in reincarnation. Me, I’m rooting for reincarnation and an eventual nirvana because things haven’t been great so far, but I’m open to anything because I can’t claim to know what happens once one passes away.

The Undertaker was the face of death upon his arrival in the WWF. He had that creepy televangelist Brother Love alongside him at the beginning, then somehow got even scarier once that ominous mortician Paul Bearer was by his side. Undertaker had two periods of his career that were scarier than most wrestlers can claim. One was his first couple of years where he wrestled like a zombie and couldn’t be conquered. He also tried to lock people in caskets a few times, most notably the Ultimate Warrior in one of the most disturbing moments I can remember. Then there was the Attitude Era, where Undertaker embraced his Satanic side and led his Ministry of Darkness. He also tried to kill Mankind at least twice.

I feel the most recent generation of wrestling fan remembers Undertaker as the guy that had the WrestleMania streak, mostly because that’s how WWE chooses to remember the man. I remember him as a creepy bastard from my childhood. Well, I guess Kane was the creepy bastard, but that’s really neither here nor there.

Thanks for reading! Hit me up at [email protected] or on the social media with thoughts, comments or suggestions. Until next time, true believers!