Misfits in Action (MIA)
WCW 2000 was a pretty crazy year. Dustin Rhodes debuted as a Sandman-esque gimmick that had to be dropped ASAP due to TNT network executives thinking he was a pedophile, Bret Hart joined the nWo because of “we’ll-think-of-reasons-later” syndrome, and a new stable was forming based on a writer’s severe misunderstanding of how puns work.
Certain members of WCW’s “New Blood” stable (which consisted of literally everyone) were berated for not helping the group defeat members of the Millionaire’s Club (which consisted of wrestlers who were making millions of dollars per year, but also wrestlers who weren’t so what the fuck?). The Billionaire’s Club were supposed to be the heels going into the feud, but for some odd reason people would rather cheer Hulk Hogan and Kevin Nash over Billy Kidman and Crowbar. Who knew.
The berated wrestlers formed their own stable called the Misfits in Action, or MIA for short. You see, they were called MIA because Eric Bischoff fired them during his tirade. That made sense. What didn’t make sense was that they were immediately rehired, so they were no longer missing in action. Their new stable name should have been “We’re Right Here and Everything is Totally Fine,” but WRHAEITF isn’t a pun so fuck it.
The new names they were hired under were General Hugh E Rection because penis, Lieutenant Loco because uncreative, Major Gunns because boobs, and Sergeant AWOL because they finally figured out how puns work. The group disbanded when Major Gunns betrayed them and joined Team Canada, because obviously the pair of boobs at ringside were the glue holding the team together.
Billy and Chuck
The angle between “Bad Ass” Billy Gun and Chuck Palumbo was that they were a gay couple. The gimmick was mostly done for comedy spots. They were eventually joined by a gay professional stylist named Rico. That’s it. The WWE wanted two men to be gay for the lawls. See, the funny part was that they were gay because gay is funny. Get it? They were gay. When you’re done catching your breath from laughing so hard, move on to the next paragraph.
The only people in the world who were not laughing (gay!) were GLAAD – Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. They didn’t find it funny because its right there in their name – Defamation of an entire group of people who were already having a hard time becoming accepted in Western Society due to people like the WWE making a mockery of who they were. Okay, that all sounds reasonable, and the WWE understood their plight. They reassured GLAAD that they’ll be quite pleased with the way this angle would play out – That is, until the angle played out.
The end of the story was that Billy and Chuck weren’t actually gay. Not only was this explained away for, yet again, comedy purposes, but it was done in a way that was meant to get them a babyface pop. Yes, the mere fact that Billy and Chuck were straight got an entire arena to erupt in gleeful ovations. Exactly what GLAAD was wanting, right?
The payoff to the big gay angle was that Eric Bischoff was actually the pastor for their wedding, and then he sent in two giant Samoans to pound the other two men – which is a sentence that sounds so gay that I already did GLAAD more justice than WWE did in months.
Aces and Eights
It pains me to include this group on this list. I was a big fan of the Aces and Eights storyline during the beginning. The payoff was that then-babyface Bully Ray was actually the leader of the heel group to the surprise of Hulk Hogan and no one else, but the turn was so beautifully done that the predictability didn’t matter.
The problems with the group grew every week. First, the reveals of masked members in the group was incredibly disappointing. D-Lo Brown, Devon Dudley, and Eric Bischoff’s son were among the people revealed to be the men behind the masks.
Second, they never won any matches. Keeping in mind that every member of the group were glorified jobbers at the time, they continued to job because that’s what jobbers do.
Third, and this is nitpicking, the group was presented as a biker group who absolutely never rode motorcycles under any circumstances.
The group eventually disbanded when several key members of the group left TNA when their contracts expired, Ken Anderson was injured, and Devon was too Devon-y to carry the group.
The No Limit Soldiers
This group was started because WCW wanted a partnership with Master P while simultaneously confusing its primarily-southern-redneck fanbase. The only way to do that was by creating a stable called No Limit Soldiers, led by Master P himself (except when it wasn’t), and designed to be babyfaces. However, they were surrounded by an audience who considered rap to be the only successful way to summon Satan and the stable failed to click. Master P appeared only twice despite the entire premise of the group being that they were his posse. This would be like Kendrick Lamar’s bodyguards stopping at a gas station to buy him a pack of gum and deciding they were clerks now and refused to leave.
The rap associated group began a feud with the West Texas Rednecks, a group led by Curt Hennig, over the premise that rap was crap. The West Texas Rednecks were a country singing stable who absolutely opposed rap, but they were presented as the heels of the feud despite being literal representation of the people they were performing in front of. To top it off, the No Limit Soldiers often bullied the Rednecks and constantly outnumbered them during the entire feud. I don’t have to report on what Ryback thinks of this to know that he absolutely hates bullies, and for good reasons. Babyfaces can’t be bullies.
The group consisted of Konnan, Rey Mysterio, and other people who are so unknown that when I Googled them the only result I got was a cat playing a piano to distract me from the fact that Google didn’t have a clue what I was talking about. I was a little disappointed, but seriously, have you ever seen a cat playing the piano? Hilarious.
No Limit Soldiers sucked.
A group formed by Xpac, Justin Credible, and Albert. I really shouldn’t have to say more, but I’m being told there’s a word limit on every entry so here we go.
Justin Credible made his WWE debut by assisting X-Pac, which is like being hired by the NBA to lick their basketballs in case they tasted too orange. At this point in his career, X-Pac was getting something called “X-Pac Heat” which roughly translates to “You’re X-Pac.” I think you get it, now. Albert eventually joined the group as their enforcer, except he was still Albert so I’m not sure who benefited here.
The only saving grace of the group was that they had a sleeper theme song by Uncle Kracker. It was a county/rap song that perfectly fit literally no one in the group, and the best part was that they hired someone to say “X-Factor” on top of Kracker saying “that factor” throughout the whole song. They didn’t even bother to edit the song first. He just says it on top of the actual lyrics. Beautiful.