And think about what wrestlers have gotten away with: breaking and entering, assault and battery, theft, death threats, and even attempted murder. Or, depending on the example, *actual* murder, as long as the storyline is supernatural enough to be genuinely upsetting. This is also the same industry in which its fans argue whether or not a match that they rated ***3/4 is disappointing because it wasn't the ****1/2 gem that they were expecting.
The following list in which WWE main event stars have very clearly broken the law in order to get revenge on an enemy. Bear in mind that this list is pretty light-hearted and tongue-in-cheek because in pro wrestling, absurdity is the norm. If a guy can throw people using his sentient genitalia, why should we bother getting upset over a televised carjacking?
10. Austin Makes House Calls (1996)
The sugary pap that was the kid-friendly New Generation began taking a darker turn when Stone Cold Steve Austin started his ascent up the card. His salty language and violent tendencies were an affront to the WWE fare of the time, and that was fine. This Austin resonated with the people, even if his participation in one particular angle was a bit questionable.
After breaking Brian Pillman's ankle in an in-ring incident, Austin announced that he was planning on 'paying a visit' to the home of his former Hollywood Blondes partner. He assaulted Pillman's friends outside the home, then ended up breaking in through a locked door at the back of the Loose Cannon Estate, before storming into the living room where it was revealed that Pillman had a gun. You may be surprised to learn that USA Network executives had a *long* talk with Vince after this one.
9. Taking The Undertaker Name Literally (1998)
Really, Undertaker's entire 28-year-run as WWE's looming shadow has been one felony after another, a walking crime syndicate unto himself. There's no time to simply list off all of his bodybag and casket-related hijinks, so let's go for a more distinct instance of Mark Callous' callousness. Namely, the time he tried to embalm Stone Cold Steve Austin.
Yes, Undertaker and Paul Bearer apparently kidnapped Austin from a hospital and planned to do something evil to him, like kill him or get him rehired by WCW (Austin may have preferred the former). After a while, Undertaker and Bearer laid an unconscious Austin up in an embalming room in order to do what the name of it suggests. That's when Austin was rescued by an in-costume Kane (does he wander the streets dressed that way?). This was November 1998, so by this time, nobody seemed to bat an eye at this attempted murder.
8. Death From Above (2000)
Two wrongs don't make a right. That's what my parents and my teachers always told me, but it was George Carlin who added: "But three rights *do* make a left." That has nothing to do with the point I'm about to make here, which is that at Survivor Series 2000, when Triple H jumped behind the wheel of a car in order to plow through Austin (mirroring the events of a year earlier), Austin had every right to be mad.
But to pick Hunter's car up with a giant crane before dropping him 25 feet to the blacktop below? Well, I'm sorry, but that's just against the law. Perhaps Austin could have flagged down a nearby police officer and reported the crime about to be committed, but that's just not the Austin way. Thankfully, Triple H was back on TV a few weeks later without a scratch, which is probably all that saved Austin from a lengthy prison sentence.
7. Abduction 3:16 (2001)
Boy, Austin is sure in a lot of these. Forget what I said about Undertaker being a perpetual crime dispenser - Austin's got him beat. Although this time, Austin was admittedly the victim, when Kurt Angle attacked him, before driving off with him in a pickup truck. Where was Angle taking him? Who knows, but Austin sure as heck didn't agree to go with him, we know that. The cameras were there, too.
The cameras were *also* there when Angle threatened to throw a helpless Austin off of a bridge, which is yet another crime. I assume the cameraman didn't want to call the police until he had detailed *all* of the felonies that were being committed because it's inconvenient to just call back each time a new crime is in progress. Anywho, Angle extorted a World title match out of a tearful, frightened Austin. Extortion's a crime too, isn't it?
6. Sooner Flambe (2003)
You can add Kane to the list of wrestlers who've had a long and sordid history of doing illegal things that have compromised the health and well-being of others. He even admitted to all of his heinous acts in group theory. And yet, the people of Knox County, TN elected him mayor anyway. What a world we live in.
This would be the time in which Kane wasn't happy with Jim Ross' line of questioning, so he assaulted Ross, dumped gasoline on him, and set him on fire. My issue isn't with the act of immolation (okay, that's not my *primary* issue), but rather with the fact that Kane can shoot fire from his gloves, yet he has to manually burn Ross the old-fashioned way. For a radical act, his execution was rather pedestrian.
5. Bearer Of Bad Endings (2004)
You know some matches are unsanctioned because of the possibility of serious injury that may occur? Well, WWE officials sanctioned a match in which Paul Bearer would be encased in cement if Undertaker didn't voluntarily lose. And that's the really screwed up part of it all, is that this whole thing could've been avoided had the governing board been thinking rationally.
Undertaker wins the match, sealing Bearer's fate, but prevents Paul Heyman from outright killing Bearer in front of thousands of witnesses. That's because Undertaker wanted to do the honours himself, and so he did. This makes one wonder what in the hell the contract signing could have been like. I mean, did Bearer agree to risk his life in this fashion? What lawyers agreed to the language in the contract? Isn't this a publicly-traded company? Like, f**king how?
4. Deadly Chase (2009)
I know Triple H had every right to be mad at Randy Orton. After all, Orton *did* beat up all of Helmsley's in-laws, including his wife, and from where I come from, that's just not cool. But Helmsley, being a corporate officer, needed to maintain a level head and do the right thing, like let the police handle it.
Instead, Helmsley menaced Orton and his Legacy comrades with a deadly weapon (a sledgehammer) actually taking to chasing Orton and Ted DiBiase through the backstage area, causing them to try and hole up in a room while barricading the door. Hunter smashing the door with the weapon only demonstrated intent to kill, as far as I'm concerned. Did Helmsley learn from this? Oh no, as two weeks later, he broke into Orton's house and tried to slaughter him there, only for the police to arrest him. Serves you right, buddy.
3. Sheamus Rides Dirty (2012)
Thankfully, nobody was injured during the commission of this crime, but it doesn't make it any better. Shortly before SummerSlam 2012, when Alberto Del Rio was wrestling a match, nemesis Sheamus made off with Del Rio's Ferrari, in full view of everybody! I mean, he even announced his intentions to just drive off with the car, with Del Rio clearly not giving him permission.
In fact, Sheamus made sure to personally film his joy-riding exploits using WWE's social media service Tout, documenting that, yup, he was out there driving in a car that didn't belong to him. Somewhere, Tommy Vercetti could only shake his head. Even worse, Jerry Lawler tried to cover for Sheamus by claiming he was "just borrowing" the car. Robert Shapiro you're not, King.
2. Braun Flips Out (2017)
In the defence of law enforcement officials, there probably aren't any handcuffs or weapons that can be used to subdue the human chupacabra known as Braun Strowman. Whenever Braun does something unkind like make an attempt on the life of another person, perhaps the only course of action is a stern rebuke. Perhaps a strongly-worded letter asking him not to do that again.
Like the time he flipped over an ambulance that had Roman Reigns inside. You *could* have had Strowman assaulted for the unsportsmanlike attack on Reigns, and you could *definitely* have had Strowman brought in after he overturned an official vehicle used for transporting injured or ill citizens to the hospital (hell, even *breathing* on an ambulance gets you two stars on GTA), but it hardly seems worth that risk, doesn't it?
1. Reigns Fought The Law But He Won (2018)
And WWE wonders why the fans have no patience for Roman Reigns - he not only broke the law in several instances, but he also has no respect for law enforcement. This past March, Reigns violated a suspension to attend Monday Night Raw, refusing to leave until Brock Lesnar confronted him. This led to Kurt Angle bringing out three US Marshals, and you'd think Reigns would be cooperative at that point.
But nooo, Reigns defiantly attacked all three Marshals, beating them up for simply doing their jobs. Now Reigns is the Universal Champion, barely six months after his heinous assault on three law enforcers. Even worse, WWE talked up Reigns for months as an uncrowned champion while conveniently ignoring the actions that should've gotten him locked up.