WWE fans and comic book fans have a lot in common, and in many cases, professional wrestlers have a vast and deep love of all things geek as well. There have been a ton of instances where WWE superstars have proven their love of geek culture, from collecting the geekiest toys and memorabilia to both dressing up as their favorite superhero, realizing their dreams by starring in a comic book movie or even writing their own superhero comic. When a WWE star openly brags about starring in a film with Scooby Doo or getting a chance to take a photo with the great Stan Lee, there is no shame shown in letting their geek flag fly.
For many years, WWE superstars have openly shared their love for all things geek with their fans, who often have the same burning desire for professional wrestling as others do for comics, video games or anime. That has helped close the gap between fan and performer over the years and has helped bring these wrestling superstars to comic conventions, where they are as famous as the most prominent actors and artists displaying their work. From wrestlers who proudly show their nerdy collections to those who stand up and proclaim that they are proud to be a geek, here are 15 behind-the-scenes photos that prove that WWE superstars are huge dorks.
15 BATISTA AND HIS LUNCH BOXES
Batista was one of the most intimidating figures in the WWE for many years. He beat up everyone from Triple H and John Cena to The Undertaker and proved that he was big enough to stand up to anybody. Since retiring from the WWE, Dave Bautista has brought that same personality and swagger to Hollywood, where he has been a big bad man in everything from Guardians of the Galaxy and Riddick to a James Bond movie.
However, while promoting Spectre, Batista admitted to Jimmy Kimmel the one thing that proves he is just as much of a dork as many of his fans. Batista collects vintage lunchboxes. The photo above shows him with his collection, which now includes a custom Drax the Destroyer lunchbox specially made for him personally.
14 WOKEN MATT HARDY
Anyone who watched Matt Hardy become "Broken" on Impact Wrestling knows that Hardy is at heart a giant dork. He helped create the Broken Matt Hardy gimmick with his own money for the company and went on to bring in his wife, toddler son, father-in-law (Senior Benjamin), and even a drone he named Vanguard 1, to help fight his battles.
One vignette also showed that he has a movie theater inside his home.
The above photo was more recent, as Broken Matt has become Woken Matt in the WWE. This was an excellent chance for Matt, his wife Reby Sky, and his son King Maxwell, to prove that they could become spitting images of the famed Addams Family. Hardy has no fear and isn't afraid to do anything to make himself appear like a dork.
13 SASHA BANKS LOVES COSPLAY
There have been a lot of photos of WWE superstars proving that they love cosplay. While not the most famous cosplayer in the WWE Universe, Sasha Banks has established more than once that she has a great love for all things comics. Banks is the cousin of none other than Snoop Dogg, and like him, she has no problem letting fans see her dorkier side.
There are two photos above, one a behind-the-scenes photo of Sasha Banks proving to be a dork and the other from the 2018 Royal Rumble. In the one picture, it is Sasha Banks dressed up as the Joker and posing for a photo battling her nemesis Robin. In the other, Sasha Banks wore a Wonder Woman outfit to the ring where she lasted almost an hour in the first-ever women's Royal Rumble match.
12 CODY RHODES AND HIS AMUSEMENT PARK FETISH
There is no doubt that Cody Rhodes has no problem letting fans see him acting like a dork, and he proved it over and over when he took on the role of Stardust in the WWE. An offshoot of his brother Goldust's gimmick, Stardust took on a life of its own as Cody tried to make his character into a real-life comic book supervillain. To top things off, Stardust even entered into a feud in the WWE with Stephen Amell, titular star of television's Arrow.
Rhodes has an obsession with amusement parks and spends a lot of his free time visiting parks all over the country.
However, Cody Rhodes' love of all things geek does not end there. Rhodes has an obsession with amusement parks and spends a lot of his free time visiting parks all over the country. In this photo, he is at an amusement park with his wife Brandi beside the Batmobile, in full costume. Rhodes made his geek dreams come true when he took a role in Arrow as a villain.
11 CM PUNK LIVES HIS COMIC BOOK DREAMS
CM Punk has always felt comfortable letting fans know that he is a dork, with no qualms about talking about all things geek. He is an avid hockey fan and also a monster fan of the Chicago Cubs. Punk is also a massive wrestling historian, showing his love by dressing up as past wrestlers like Macho Man Randy Savage and talking openly on occasion about the old WWE ice cream bars.
However, CM Punk is also a huge comic book fan. In the WWE, Punk would yell "it's clobberin' time" before coming to the ring, paying homage to The Thing. While still wrestling, Punk wrote the intro to the Avengers vs. X-Men hardcover collection, and when he retired from the WWE, Punk got a chance to write his own comic -- one based on Batista's character from Guardians of the Galaxy, Drax the Destroyer.
10 ALEXA BLISS: EVERY GEEK'S DREAM GIRL
As mentioned when discussing Sasha Banks, there is someone in the WWE who is even more of a cosplay fan than the Legit Boss. That person would be Alexa Bliss, the first wrestler to ever hold both the Monday Night Raw and SmackDown Live women's titles. When Bliss was in NXT getting ready for her main roster call-up, she was perfecting her gimmick, which involved a lot of cosplay in her wrestling outfits.
Bliss is also a huge video game fan!
When Alexa Bliss finally made it to the WWE big leagues, she came out in her homage to none other than Harley Quinn. The photo above of Bliss backstage shows how she turned Harley's look into her own. Bliss is also a huge video game fan, and at comic conventions, she will challenge any fan to try to beat her at a video game, and almost always wins.
9 HURRICANE HELMS LIVES HIS GIMMICK
Take one look at Shane "Hurricane" Helms in the above BTS photo at a wrestling convention, and it is clear that he has no problems acting like a major dork in public. At the 2018 Royal Rumble, Hurricane Helms made a surprise appearance and even tried to go one-on-one with John Cena before his elimination. From his superhero antics to his over-the-top posing, Helms has perfected the role.
Also, let's not forget, the man has a Green Lantern tattoo!
This should come as no surprise. While Hurricane Helms was a mid-card star when he wrestled in the WWE, he has lived his gimmick since leaving the promotion. Outside of portraying himself in Impact Wrestling, fans all over the world can see Helms as his superhero counterpart at indie wrestling shows all the time. The fact that Helms can act in character while standing by someone like the legendary Sabu speaks volumes for his dedication.
8 NEW DAY LETS THEIR GEEK FLAG FLY
There is no wretlers in the WWE that will act like fools more than The New Day. The group consists of Big E Langston, Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods, and all three men are huge geeks in their own right. As a matter of fact, two of them will make other appearances higher on this list. As for this photo, this is a BTS shot that they took before WrestleMania.
They are huge Dragon Ball fans, and those costumes they are wearing in this photo are the same ones that they came out to the ring wearing for their match that night. This wasn't even the most ridiculous costumes for the group, as New Day has dressed up as a large number of geek properties over their WWE tenure together, and they don't seem finished yet.
7 IS HORNSWOGGLE AN HONORARY MUPPET?
Hornswoggle was a comedy star in the WWE during his time there. At one time, the WWE had a large number of little person performers on staff, with the most obvious example being WrestleMania III, where King Kong Bundy battled the diminutive superstars. Hornswoggle was brought in as a joke character. He could perform well in the ring but was used originally as a Leprechaun and then as a gag when they made it look like he was Vince McMahon's illegitimate son.
Hornswoggle also got a chance to appear in The Muppets!
While working in the WWE, Hornswoggle also got a chance to appear in The Muppets, the surprisingly good movie reboot of the classic Jim Henson franchise. That had to be a dream come true for the WWE superstar. As this photo shows, Hornswoggle has a tattoo of Miss Piggy, Kermit the Frog and Gonzo on his ankle and professes to own a large number of Muppets memorabilia.
6 WWE SUPERSTARS LOVE THEIR VIDEO GAMES
There was a recent interview with AJ Styles where he was talking about the difference between today's WWE superstars and those from yesteryear. When asked about their lives away from the squared circle, Styles said the older wrestlers lived their characters and often spent a lot of time out partying when not wrestling. However, today's wrestlers spend more time playing video games than drinking and galavanting.
This BTS photo is from backstage and shows Seth Rollins in a heated battle with Curtis Axel (the son of the late Mr. Perfect). Rollins was, at one time, the undefeated Madden football champion on the Raw roster. Watching the game are The New Day, and in an appearance that might shock those who only watch him on Raw, The Miz.
5 NO ONE LOVES CHRISTMAS MORE THAN MICK FOLEY
No one loves Santa Claus more than Mick Foley. For many years, WWE fans could count on seeing Santa Claus coming out to the ring to confront a WWE superstar, and for many years, that was always Mick Foley. The man once known as Mankind, Cactus Jack and Dude Love, has portrayed Santa Claus for many years and in one interview with Fox News, Foley said that playing Santa every year helps fill in the void left by retiring from wrestling.
The man once known as Mankind has portrayed Santa Claus for many years.
Foley does a lot of charitable work as Santa Claus every year and said that even if there are only three kids there, he feels it is as great as any pay-per-view because he is creating joy for those three kids. Foley also added to his sizeable literary output by publishing his new memoir titled Saint Mick.
4 KOFI KINGSTON LOVES GEEK CULTURE
Kofi Kingston is the veteran member of the New Day faction. He has proven time and time again that he has no problem acting like a dork in front of the fans, whether it is dressing up like a Dragon Ball character, dancing like a fool, or showing off his collection of all things geek. This BTS photo showed Kofi on a big spending spree for graphic novels, and that isn't all he collects.
Kingston has the Kofi Cave in his house with an extensive graphic novel and toy collection. It includes helmets and masks from superhero characters, including the Rocketeer. His most prized possession is his sword collection, which includes swords from Sucker Punch and Blade plus some lightsabers and replicas from Dragon Ball Z. To add to his love of geek memorabilia, Kingston also said that he owns every single toy that was ever created of his character since he entered the WWE.
3 ZACK RYDER'S TOY COLLECTION
When it comes to WWE superstars and toys, no one can lay a finger on Zack Ryder. While Kofi Kingston owns all the toys based on him, Zack Ryder owns so many toys that some companies made special editions of Zack Ryder figures just so he would help promote their business.
This behind-the-scenes photo only shows a portion of the immense amount of toys that Ryder owns.
Ryder admitted to owning toys from almost every wrestling-themed toy line ever made. In an exclusive 2016 video for his popular YouTube show, Ryder showed off the swag that he bought at the San Diego Comic-Con that year, which had to total thousands of dollars of memorabilia and toys. The WWE even had a 50-page slideshow that just touched on all the toys that Ryder owns in his monster collection.
2 JERRY LAWLER'S MAN CAVE
There is a lot of talk about the old generation of WWE stars who partied all the time and the young generation of stars who are dorks who love comics and video games. However, that isn't always the case. Jerry "The King" Lawler is 68-years-old and is a huge comic book geek and collector of memorabilia. He turned his garage into a pop culture museum of his own, including a coke memorabilia collection. Lawler has always talked about how he is a huge Superman fan and has a ton of statues, toys and collectibles as well.
There is even a life-size Superman and Hulk statue in his garage.
He has often displayed his own artwork as well, proving that he could have worked as a comic book artist if the wrestling thing didn't work out. If you have ever seen the shirts that Lawler wears, they are one-of-a-kind, and he personally designed them all.
1 XAVIER WOODS IS THE ONE NERD TO RULE THEM ALL
If there is one person in the WWE that emphasizes nerd culture and proudly admits he is a dork, it is Xavier Woods. Straight up front, Xavier is a very smart guy, with a bachelor's degree in philosophy, a masters degree in psychology and even a PhD in educational psychology! So, what does he do with this education? He puts on tights and wrestles for the WWE while playing video games non-stop in his spare time!
This behind-the-scenes photo has Xavier Woods not at a comic or wrestling convention, but at the E3 Expo, promoting gaming culture. Woods also has a YouTube show he makes called Up Up Down Down under his real name Austin Creed and he is part of a group known as the NPC Collective, which stands for the Nerdy People of Color Collective. Xavier Woods knows that there is nothing to be ashamed of when it comes to being a dork, even for a WWE superstar.