Awaiting the big screen debuts of Black Adam and Peacemaker, played by iconic WWE wrestlers, Dwayne « The Rock » Johnson and John Cena, it’s a good time to explore the wrestlers who have been introduced to the world. world of comics properties on television and the big screen.
The worlds of comics and wrestling are hugely important in pop culture and both are immensely popular. The two outlets share many common ground when it comes to storytelling and fandoms. Therefore, when the two are combined, the result is epic for fans of either of them and especially for both.
10 Billy Gunn in Sabrina the Teenage Witch
Affectionately known as the Ass Man, Billy Gunn has been fighting for almost 30 years. Gunn has fought for various promotions around the world, against a wide variety of opponents, including teenage witch Sabrina Spellman. Before Sabrina the Teenage Witch was a hit television series in the ’90s, it was an Archie comic that started in the’ 70s.
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In the episode « Salem’s Daughter », Sabrina discovers that her cat, Salem, has a daughter who is getting married. Sabrina gets involved in planning the event, and things get interesting when she discovers that the ring ceremony involves a wrestling ring. Inside that ring is Billy Gunn, and Sabrina must defeat Gunn for the bride.
9 Randy Savage in Spider-Man (2002 movie)
Randy « Macho Man » Savage is one of the few fighters who has managed to match the power of the star Hulk Hogan. Savage, like Hogan, was known for his signature music, choruses, and voice. These factors made him a perfect fit for the role of Bonesaw McGraw in Sam Raimi’s Spiderman movie.
Bonesaw McGraw was a character inspired by Crusher Hogan, a fighter from the Spider-Man origin story. Raimi was always able to masterfully blend comic book inspiration with original storytelling, and Spidey’s origin of wrestling is a prime example of this. What makes it more special is that Savage’s first wrestling character was called The Spider, inspired by the comic book character.
8 Kevin Nash in The Punisher (2004 film)
Kevin Nash is another wrestler who has performed for numerous promotions around the world in his more than 30-year career, and he is one of the relatively few wrestlers who have made the move to mainstream Hollywood. Despite never having risen to The Rock stardom, this 6-foot-tall giant has appeared in some memorable roles thanks to his size and physique.
Nash’s size and physique made him a great Russian adversary to Frank Castle in the 2004 film adaptation of The Punisher. In the shot used in the film, Nash was accidentally stabbed by the lead actor, Thomas Jane, when he forgot to exchange a real knife for a prop. Nash didn’t realize he was bleeding and ended the scene in character.
7 Triple H in Blade: Trinity
Paul « Triple H » Levesque has lived and brought WWE to life for nearly thirty years, as a wrestler in the ring and as a business executive outside of it. He is the current WWE Executive Vice President of Strategy and Global Talent Development and is married to Stephanie McMahon, the daughter of WWE owner Vince McMahon.
It was Vince McMahon who suggested that Triple H and his rival in the ring, Dwayne « The Rock » Johnson, move away from the ring to enter Hollywood. Triple H would make his film debut in Blade: Trinity – the third installment in the Blade franchise – as the vampire Jarko Grimwood. However, unlike The Rock, Triple H would not pursue Hollywood stardom after this role and instead remained focused on WWE.
6 Batista in various films of the Marvel Cinematic Universe
Batista, whose real name is Dave Bautista, is one of the few professional wrestlers who have had a successful film career after wrestling. Following in The Rock’s footsteps and leading the way for John Cena, Batista is known as much for his acting roles as for his wrestling career. Batista’s big opportunity would come in 2014 with Guardians of the Galaxy.
Thanks to his role as Drax in the Guardians series, as well as other MCU films, Batista has been a part of two of the biggest box office hits of all time: Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame. He has shown that he can be more than just a symbolic big man in the movies, as he showed off his comedic abilities as Drax. Some of the most hilarious moments in the entire MCU have come from Drax.
5 Edge in The Flash (2014 TV series)
Adam « Edge » Copeland is currently on a wave of momentum in WWE. The « Rated-R Superstar » returned to the ring at the 2020 Royal Rumble after a nine-year absence. A year later he would enter the Royal Rumble again and this time he won the match, with a main event at WrestleMania in his future.
Edge’s return required incredible hard work and perseverance on the fighter’s part to overcome what should have been a career-ending injury. In 2011, Edge announced his retirement from wrestling, and would take advantage of this time away from the ring to start an acting career. During this time, he played Atom Smasher on the second season of The CW’s The Flash. His character ended up being important, as he introduced the concept of Earth 2 to the series and the Arrowverse as a whole.
4 Eve Torres in Supergirl (2015 TV series)
Eve Torres began her career in wrestling in 2007, when she won the WWE Diva Search. She left the company as an interpreter in 2012 to pursue other opportunities, although she remained as an ambassador for the company with the occasional return. During her time with the company, she became a three-time Divas champion.
One of those non-wrestling related opportunities was appearing on the CW series Supergirl as the villain Máxima. His character only appeared once in the series. Despite this, Torres demonstrated her skills as a fighter and her current job as a martial arts instructor.
3 Cody Rhodes on Arrow
Second-generation wrestler Cody Rhodes is currently the Executive Vice President of AEW, WWE’s biggest rival. The son of Hall of Famer Dusty Rhodes wrestled for WWE for numerous years as a variety of characters, one of the strangest being Stardust. Like Stardust, Rhodes fell out with Arrow actor Stephen Amell during an episode of Raw. This would lead to a tag team match at SummerSlam 2015 between the two and their chosen teammates.
Cody would enter Stephen’s world for his rematch in 2016. In season 5 of Arrow a drug called Stardust had circulated, a nod to Rhodes’s character in WWE. Team Arrow discovers that Rhodes’ character, Derek Sampson, had been producing and supplying the drug. Sampson was pain free and healed quickly, leading to some intense clashes between Sampson and Arrow in recent seasons. In the end, just like SummerSlam, Amell’s Arrow would be the outright winner.
2 Sheamus in TMNT: Out Of The Shadows
Sheamus made history in 2009 at TLC by defeating John Cena and becoming the first WWE champion of Irish descent. It didn’t take long for the fighter to make an impact, as his title win came just months after his debut. He has remained consistent in WWE, collecting more championships as an individual and tag team wrestler. His time as a team fighter may have inspired his appearance in the comics.
The fighter would star in 2016 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out Of The Shadows, the second film in the rebooted TMNT live-action film franchise. The fighter would play a version of the character Rocksteady, one half of the iconic villain duo Bebop and Rocksteady that debuted in the original Mutant Ninja Turtles animated series.
1 Goldberg in The Flash (2014 TV series)
Bill Goldberg is best known for his time in WCW, where he had an impressive unbeaten streak. The wrestler never reached the same heights in his first stage in WWE, although he has recently returned to the company as a part-time wrestler. Goldberg has appeared in numerous movies and television shows and, like Kevin Nash, is often chosen for his size and physique.
In 2018, Goldberg would appear on The CW’s The Flash as inmate David Rachet, also known as Big Sir. He was friends with his cellmates Henry and Barry Allen. While Barry is in prison, Big Sir takes care of him, Rachet, like Henry, had been sent to prison by mistake, mistaken for the metahuman Dwarfstar. When Barry finds out, he helps him escape.