1st African American Women’s Champ; Attitude Era Diva
Hall of Fame Rating
4 out of 10
2016’s female induction is a multi-time women’s champion, a one time cruiserweight champion and a strong willed women. With all that being true, why does this induction just feel lackluster?
The female wing of the WWE Hall of Fame has always worked by different rules. That’s simply due to the WWE treating women’s wrestlers different. They aren’t even allowed to be called women.
Somehow an actual belt in WWE
Its easy to look at the history of women’s wrestling and see how they have been treated as second class citizens. Whether its the 5 years that everything from championships matches to blood feuds were decided by said women removing each other’s clothes or how the Women’s Championship just disappeared without notice twice in the last 30 years (see 1989 and 1995).
This basically means that it can be difficult finding an alive deserving women’s candidate each year for the Hall of Fame. Some deserving inductees are dead (Luna) or persona non gratis (Chyna)
This brings us to today’s induction. Jacqueline or Jackie Moore. You may remember her as the first female crusierweight champion or her time during WWF Attitude….or you may not remember her at all.
Jackie’s issue is that while she has accomplishments on paper, she is missing one core thing which seems to exist in successful Hall of Famers. It is the simple fact of being memorable. Jim Duggan had few accomplishments but is well remembered and beloved. Is Jackie even remembered?
Jackie appeared in WCW in 1997-1998, even having a feud with Disco Inferno. I was surprised to find out about this fact as in my mind, Jackie was never in WCW. She never really did anything memorable.
Neither did Disco Inferno
She appeared in WWF in 1998 and took on the role of Marc Mero’s girlfriend.
In that role, Jackie had her biggest feud of her career, defeating Sable for the recently renewed WWF Women’s Championship becoming the 1st African American Women’s Champ. This should have been a huge deal, expect it kinda wasn’t and is more a footnote of history that a pioneering moment. She only held onto the belt for the length of that feud, losing to Sable 50 days later. Jackie’s title run was designed to get Sable over and allow Sable to chase. It really had little to do with Jackie herself.
Jackie had one more feud for the women’s championship in 2000, defeating Harvey Whipleman (yes you heard that correct) for the belt before losing it to Stephanie McMahon. Another Jackie situation where she played more of a support role than being the featured or memorable person/event.
The problem here is that Jackie, like many women wrestlers tend to blend into the scenery due to how they are booked and how generally there is only one, max two female feuds at one time. With Trish, Lita, Stephanie, Victoria, Molly Holly clogging feuds and storylines, Jackie tended to disappear.
Jackie spent most of her career either on the sidelines or in the background. She was in WWE from 1998-2004 and there are only three major moments that Jackie was involved in. Two are above and the third is her other 1st. She was the first female cruiserweight champion. She won during Chavo Guerrero’s open challenge and lost the title back in a few weeks in a match where Chavo had his arm tied behind his back. That’s not a great way for Jackie to go out.
Jackie was released in 2004, and ending up spending some time in TNA (we generally don’t mention TNA due to its well…general suckatude), before mostly retiring in her 40s.
So is that a Hall of Fame career? While on paper it appears that Jackie is an easy 2nd or 3rd ballot candidate, in reality, she is a so so induction. Jackie fits into the group of former wrestlers who if never included, no one would complain. Meh.
Jackie lives in Dallas Texas. She is being inducted in Texas. Plus WWE has included a female inductee each year since 2010. Yup those are the two reasons….
Opens Door For?
If Jackie gets in, I assume that Victoria and Molly Holly will follow shortly.
WWE has announced its prerequisite female inductee (and African American inductee) in Jackie Moore aka Jacqueline.
Since 2010, WWE has made to include a female inductee as part of the WWE Hall of Fame. Some years, this gives us important deserving Hall of Famers (Alundra Blayze and Trish Stratus) and some years Mae Young.
Jackie fits in between as a seemingly historically important female star who despite all of her firsts (first female African American Women’s champion, first female Cruiserweight champion) somehow feels lesser than Stratus or even Lita.
This is likely to do with how WWE treated Jackie. She never fit into the “main event” of the WWE Women’s division, more living in an auxiliary area (despite her accomplishments).
I am going to think on Jackie’s inclusion more and do a full break down upcoming!
2015 has been a real up and down year for wrestling. NXT is blossoming while WWE pretends its biggest star in history doesn’t exist. We’ve lost Hall of Famers like Roddy Piper, Verne Gagne and Dusty Rhodes meanwhile Icons like Undertaker, Sting and The Dudley Boyz are back.
2015 suffered because of its size. It had 9 inductees. That’s two headliners, a woman, a celebrity, a foreign act, a tag team, an 70s wrestler, The Warrior Award and Rikishi.
While I love Zbyzsko, Medusa and Fujinamani deservedly going in, The Bushwhackers, Rikishi and even our celebrity inductee were lackluster at best (granted Luke and Butch were great comic relief)
2016 will be in Dallas, Texas. If one thing came out of 2015’s class it is that we are guaranteed a smaller class of likely no more than 6 and the Warrior Award, 6 total or 6 without the Warrior Award (aka the award which can only now go to dead children)
With all that in mind. I have broken down my predictions for the WWE Class of 2016. We start with an ICON!
Many might be expecting the Undertaker here in this slot. Last year, I predicted that Undertaker would headline the Class of 2015. I was dead wrong, pun intended. Taker did not retire as expected, he appeared at Wrestlemania 31 and as of this writing also wrestled Summerslam. Now, by no means is the actually 50 year old “dead man” returning full time. He’s not. He did Vince a favor. A favor to come in and main event Summerslam to give it the big time feel and extra WWE Network buys.
Well what does all this have to do with Sting? Well, the WWE simply doesn’t need Sting as much. And although he is now in WWE World Heavyweight Championship program, even if he beats Rollins, it will be short (and cashed in upon from Sheamus) Sting is the pinnacle of part time. Most of his time is spent doing marketing and being an ambassador for the company. He can do that as a WWE Hall of Famer.
I expect Sting to retire at Wrestlemania 32 (he is 56 years old as of this writing). He will not face Taker, instead he will fight and likely lose to an up and coming talent who can carry him (Looking at you Cesaro). End career. Welcome to the Hall of Fame.
Chances of Induction: 7 out of 10
Reason it Won’t Happen: Summerslam forces Taker to retire. Or WWE does induct him while still active. (NOT A GOOD IDEA)
This omission has been one of the biggest head scratchers since 2009 (with the induction of the Von Erichs). Why are the Fabulous Freebirds not in the WWE Hall of Fame? They were one of the most important tag teams in the history of wrestling. Their feud with the Von Erichs was one of the hottest feuds in the country from 1982-1985. These men were territory specialists. They succeeded almost everywhere they went (excluding the WWF where they were made faces for no reason and left after a month). They could have easier fit in classes in Atlanta (2011), New Orleans (2014) and California (2015). The Freebirds are that prolific.
Michael PS Hayes has worked with the WWE for 15-20 years. He’s bought in to the WWE way of doing things, important to the company and an obvious choice. Terry Gordy and Buddy Roberts are both deceased, so expect Jimmy Garvin (Freedbird circa WCW) to join as a member as well.
Most importantly, this years Hall of Fame is happening in Dallas. Dallas was one of the major cities in WCCW, where arguably the Freebirds had their greatest success.
Chances of Induction: 9 out of 10
Reasons not to induct: Confederate Flag was their costumes. Racism of Hayes. I mean he is most defiantly a racist.
Stan Hansen is one of those talents who someday will make the WWE Hall of Fame. He is an obvious inductee. He was a huge talent, who fought for every major promotion (including WWWF, breaking Bruno’s neck)
In 2010, WWE brought Hansen in to induct Antonio Inoki. This was the last piece of the puzzle, opening the door for his inclusion. He, like Future Hall of Famer, Vader were the epitome of American wrestler success in Japan. WWE has been continuing to globalize their brand, and with the hiring of KENTA, and Fujinami joining last year, Hansen is a perfect choice. He’s also Texan, wears a cowboy hat and is again…TEXAN.
Chances of induction 6 out of 10
Reasons Not to Induct: WWE goes with JBL instead. WWE really likes inducting their own. And with the inclusion of our next prediction, Hansen’s Japanese ties are perhaps, less important.
For the first time in history, Jushin Liger appeared on WWE television in a WWE ring. At NXT Takeover August 22nd, Liger, aged 50, did a very good job convincing us that he still “Got It”. 50, while old for a WWE wrestler (not named Sting or Undertaker) is old hat in Japan. Wrestlers, especially large talents like Liger, are known to wrestle well into their 60s in limited role. (Like Ric Flair with less hard living and chops)
Liger is the perfect candidate for a international induction. He wrestled for quite a bit of time for WCW, is a great contact to have to be an ambassador (like Tatsumi Fujinami is currently) and will help build WWE’s brand in Japan. Win win on all sides.
Liger’s appearance (and just recently announced future appearances) are too random without the Hall of Fame attached. While its possibly Hansen or Liger, it could still be both.
Chances of induction: 7 out of 10
Reasons Not Too induct: Doesn’t speak English. Perhaps WWE wants to a bigger foreign name.
When doing these lists, I always have to remember two things. There will always be a woman and likely always be a minority. WWE does not like to have 6-9 white guys standing on stage.
They’d much rather have 6-9 white guys, AND one woman AND one minority
See Much Better
Jackie Moore or Jacquiline fits the mold of the next women’s inductee. They’ve done the biggest names in Women’s wrestling in the last 20 years (Western audiences only). 2015 gave us Alundra Blayze in a welcomed surprise move.. The next women’s champion after Blayze (and the deactivation in 95, reactivation in 98) was Jackie Moore.
Many forget that she beat Sable to claim the newly rechristened WWE Women’s Championship. Technically, she is the first women’s champion of modern Women/DIVA wrestling.
Plus she is from Dallas Texas. Fits the bill, makes all the sense.
Chances of Induction: 6 out of 10
Reasons Not to Do Induction: Skip ahead of her and go right to Sable. Seriously, Sable should be in the WWE Hall of Fame. She is legit married to Brock Lesnar as well. Why hasn’t that happened already?
Anyone who has visited here at all knows I hate the celebrity inductee. Why? Because it is unnecessary. It is rewarding a celebrity for making a paid special appearance in a product which most of them do not care about.
Champions of the sport and the entertainment in wrestling are welcome.
Bullshit like Jeremy Piven said above (SUMMERFEST!) is more the norm that the exception. And even when a fan of the product comes along, they are given heinous dialogue and look strange and out of place. Jon Stewart was so weird at Summerslam…awkward and scripted.
Regardless of what I say, a celebrity inductee will join the Hallowed Halls currently holding the greats, like Drew Carey and William Perry, both of whom were obviously NOT getting a paycheck/promoting some stupid comedy show which lasted three months.
Who Would I Accept?
Lauper had a great impact on WWE. Like MR. T, her presense helped to legitimize the WWF in 1985. The rockin wrestling stuff was great,
Her return in 2011 was to say the least absurdly awkward. It be a short speech and a deserving nod.
Who is Likely to Get it?
William Shatner, Shaq, Pamela Anderson ANYONE!!!!
Chances of Lauper, Muhammed Ali or Andy Kaufman: 0 out of 10
As a PS, there are two other names I would not be surprised to see in 2016. The first is Raw’s third announcer JBL, mentioned above. The second would be more of a surprise. I am talking about Owen Hart. You see, a DVD is coming out about Owen’s career, without Owen’s wife permission. Because the lawsuit is settled….and WWE can legally do that….and Bret Hart wanted it and wants an induction….and they just inducted Macho Man without the involvement or support of his widow…and Owen Hart might be in the video game.
I don’t feel confident quite yet that Owen will go in, but IF we see him in WWE 2k16, I will amend my list and add “The King of Harts” Owen Hart.