[[caption-width-right:214:THIS IS EXTREME!]]

->''"You think The Sandman would get over in today’s WWE? Scratch that, you think The Sandman would get over ANYWHERE BUT ECW? That was the genius of Paul Heyman."''
-->--'''[[Website/{{Wrestlecrap}} RD Reynolds]]''', ''"[[[[http://www.wrestlecrap.com/inductions/induction-vince-mcmahon-and-the-brass-rings-2014-gooker-award-co-winner/ INDUCTION: Vince McMahon and the Brass Rings – 2014 Gooker Award Co-Winner]]"''

->''"From the Wrestling/{{Harley Race}}s, to the Wrestling/{{Barry Windham}}s, to the... Wrestling/{{Ric Flair}}s, I accept this heavyweight title... and they... can all... '''KISS! MY! ASS!!!''' [...] Tonight, let the new era begin! The era of the sport of professional wrestling! The era of the Franchise! The era of the '''E-C-W!'''''"

The little wrestling promotion that could - and did - change ''everything''.

Tod Gordon started Eastern Championship Wrestling in 1992, with the first event being held on February 25, at the Original Sports Bar in Philadelphia, PA as a member of the Wrestling/NationalWrestlingAlliance. Memphis legend [[Wrestling/EddieGilbert "Hot Stuff" Eddie Gilbert]] was the original booker, but he split from the company in October 1993, right before Ultra Clash. Former Wrestling/{{WCW}} manager/commentator [[Wrestling/PaulHeyman Paul E. Dangerously (Paul Heyman)]], who had arrived in the summer as a manager, took over as booker, while also working on-screen as a manager.

Along with the young hopefuls who would go on to become at least semi-stars (Wrestling/StevieRichards, [[Wrestling/JimFullington the Sandman]], Wrestling/ChrisCandido, later Wrestling/TommyDreamer, Wrestling/{{Sabu}} and [[Wrestling/{{Tazz}} the Tazmaniac]]), the promotion also featured many RingOldies, such as Wrestling/JimmySnuka (the first [[http://www.wrestling-titles.com/us/ecw/ecw-h.html NWA ECW Heavyweight Champion]]), Wrestling/TerryFunk, Wrestling/DonMuraco and Wrestling/IvanKoloff, as well as cameos by Wrestling/DaveyBoySmith, Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart, Wrestling/NikolaiVolkoff, Wrestling/ScottHall, [[Wrestling/{{SidEudy}} Sid]], Wrestling/RickRude, [[Wrestling/{{JakeRoberts}} Jake "The Snake" Roberts]], [[Wrestling/{{JerryLawler}} Jerry "The King" Lawler]] and one of the final in-ring appearances of Kerry Von Erich.

In 1994, the company was part of an [[http://www.wrestling-titles.com/nwa/world/nwa-h.html NWA World Heavyweight Championship]] tournament that would crown a new champion. The NWA president was worried that ECW was going to monopolize the title much like Jim Crockett Promotions did in the '80s, so he took control of the tournament. In retaliation, Tod Gordon and Paul Heyman devised a plan with the man booked to win the tournament - Shane Douglas - that went into effect after Shane won the title. The quote that starts off this article comes from Shane's post-match speech after defeating [[Wrestling/TooColdScorpio 2 Cold Scorpio]] for the title; Douglas ended up tossing down the NWA World Heavyweight Championship belt, raised up the NWA ECW Heavyweight Championship belt, and declared himself the "new ECW Heavyweight Champion of the World". August 27, 1994 would forever be known as the day Eastern Championship Wrestling died; the NWA dissolved its association with the company and stripped Douglas of its world title, while the company itself would change a single word in its name just days later - it was now officially ''Extreme Championship Wrestling''.

For the next seven years, ECW would drastically change the landscape of the national pro wrestling scene. Taking a cue from {{Garbage Wrestler}}s of the past (like Terry Funk - himself an ECW alumni - and Wrestling/AbdullahTheButcher, who also appeared), as well as Japanese "deathmatch" promotions like Wrestling/{{FMW}}, ECW popularized "hardcore" wrestling in the United States; practically every match was fought under what's now known as "Extreme Rules" (where pretty much anything except hitting a ref was legal). Several other wrestling styles were also highlighted and popularized thanks to ECW, including ''lucha libre'' (which led WCW to raid ECW's talent roster for the best ''luchadores'' they had to create their famous Cruiserweight division).

ECW presented a product for a more mature wrestling fan, giving them flawed heroes, deeper storylines, dramatic matches, and - oh, yeah, how could we forget - plenty of sex and violence. Their product was a stark contrast to the family-friendly comic-book superheroes of [[Wrestling/{{WWE}} the WWF]] and WCW, as well as the highly-{{kayfabe}}d style of the NWA. ECW also invented and/or popularized many things that the modern wrestling fan takes for granted these days: having an arsenal of weapons under the ring, the presence of an Evil Authority Figure (in the form of Bill Alphonso from the Pennsylvania State Athletic Commission, and later [[Wrestling/DonCallis Cyrus]] from "The Network"), many of the most daring maneuvers that are now seen on TV on a regular basis (mostly in GimmickMatches), and angles with "shades of grey". ECW also turned a whole bunch of wrestlers who were rejects from the big promotions (because they were too short, or not muscular enough, or too ethnic, or anything not having to do with actual skill) and turned them into hot commodities, leading to many of them having long and successful careers with the bigger promotions. (Amongst the ECW alumni that left the company to go on and have memorable careers were Wrestling/ChrisBenoit, Wrestling/EddieGuerrero, Wrestling/MickFoley, Wrestling/ReyMysterioJr, Wrestling/{{Lita}},[[note]]known there as Miss Congeniality[[/note]] Wrestling/ChrisJericho, Wrestling/{{Raven}}, Wrestling/RonSimmons, Wrestling/RobVanDam, and - arguably the most famous of them all - Wrestling/StoneColdSteveAustin.)

Even the ECW crowds had a big influence on other wrestling fans. The "WOO!" when one wrestler chops another (a {{homage}} to Wrestling/RicFlair), the "This is awesome!" chant for a great match, the "Holy shit!" chant for a particularly impressive move, and the "You fucked up!" chant when a wrestler misses a spot were born in ECW, and almost all of these chants remain ingrained in wrestling crowds to this day. The fans were also allowed to bring their own weapons to the show in its early days, and wrestlers would use them during matches (infamous weapons included a cactus, a ladder, an NES, a VCR, a ''two-man kayak,'' and a [[FryingPanOfDoom cast-iron skillet]], whose use by Mick Foley against The Sandman brought "Bring Your Own Weapons" nights to an end).

The promotion was not without its share of controversy, either - in 1996, two incidents marred the company almost to the point of ruination. At High Incident on October 26, [[http://www.wrestling-titles.com/us/ecw/ecw-h.html ECW World Heavyweight Champion]] the Sandman defeated his former tag team partner 2 Cold Scorpio. After the match, [=Raven=] and members of his Nest, Stevie Richards, the Blue Meanie and [[Wrestling/MikeBucci Super Nova]], crucified the Sandman, with a crown of barbed-wire instead of thorns. This incident caused many fans to go silent as it happened, marking the first time even the ECW Mutants (as the fans came to be known) were left speechless. Fearing possible backlash, Raven was ordered to apologize for the act to the crowd. The incident would not be seen until nearly a decade later thanks to Wrestling/KurtAngle - he had attended the show where the "crucifixion" happened and even appeared in the ring to set up an angle between himself and Taz, but threatened to sue Heyman and ECW should footage of him at that show ever be aired; the footage of both Angle ''and'' the crucifixion wouldn't be seen by the general public until ''The Rise and Fall of ECW'' was released.

On top of that, there was also the "Mass Transit Incident". In late 1996, a young man by the name of Eric Kulas managed to get into a match when another wrestler no-showed due to travel issues; going by the ring name "Mass Transit", Kulas competed in a tag team match and was cut open pretty deep by infamous hardcore wrestler/psychopath Wrestling/NewJack. This wouldn't normally be a problem, but in Kulas' case, he was underage and had no wrestling experience of any kind - he had lied to Heyman and other ECW bookers to get a spot on the card. The incident caused ECW to come under major scrutiny and almost cost them their first big pay-per-view spot until Kulas' lying to the booking team came to light. You can read more about this at [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mass_Transit_incident_%28professional_wrestling%29 That Other Wiki.]]

Once the colorful supermen the WWF had built their company on started to fail and they found themselves chasing WCW's lead, its rise back to dominance came through mimicking the ECW style. Both the WWF and WCW raided ECW's talent rosters with varying levels of success (the biggest success being "Stone Cold" Steve Austin, whose firing from WCW led him to go to ECW for a brief period before entering the WWF and becoming the most famous pro wrestler since Wrestling/HulkHogan).

Sadly, ECW was not long for this world: combined with a TV deal with cable network TNN (the precursor to Creator/SpikeTV) that went horribly awry thanks to the WWF, Paul Heyman's notoriously bad business sense (something even Heyman owns up to) sent the promotion into bankruptcy even as the wrestling styles and writing style they popularized took the wrestling world by storm. Wrestlers were lucky to get paid in the final year or two. In the end, the company went out on pay-per-view - its last event was their ''Guilty as Charged'' PPV in January of 2001, and the main event saw Wrestling/JerryLynn face a returning Rob Van Dam (who had taken a hiatus from the company because of contract disagreements) in the last great match of the promotion. (Incidentally, the show was held at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York, the same building where the two ''ECW One Night Stand'' pay-per-views were held.) Once the company officially declared bankruptcy, the WWF bought the promotion, getting all of its trademarks and its video library in the deal. This buyout, coupled with the eventual buyout of WCW just a couple of months later, left the WWF as the biggest wrestling promotion on the planet.

After its closing, ECW's popularization of "hardcore" wrestling resulted in countless independent federations, such as XPW, poorly mimicking that style. {{Backyard|Wrestling}} Wrestling/{{CZW}} would take over ECW's territory, projecting itself as a successor, but [[NotSoSimilar proved to be a very different promotion;]] Wrestling/ProWrestlingGuerilla opened in a different territory and is typically seen as a more "proper" successor to ECW, though it's still not quite the same. ECW also brought back old-school technical wrestling and high-flying spot-wrestlers, and thus served as a big influence on Wrestling/RingOfHonor.

In June 2005, the ECW name was revived by WWE for ''ECW One Night Stand'', a one-night pay-per-view reunion of ECW alumni (that same weekend, there was another ECW tribute show - ''Hardcore Homecoming'' - which was spearheaded by Shane Douglas and featured several ECW wrestlers who didn't appear at ''One Night Stand''). The event proved so successful that a second ''ECW One Night Stand'' was held a year later - this time, ECW and WWE talent was mixed together, since this event would be the starting point for ECW becoming WWE's third brand (alongside ''Raw'' and ''[=SmackDown=]''). WWE's ECW brand, which had an weekly hour-long show on [=SyFy=], would last until February 16, 2010; the next week, it was replaced with ''WWE NXT'', the wrestlers on the ECW brand were split up and placed on the ''Raw'' and ''[=SmackDown=]'' rosters (or released outright), and the brand was laid to rest by WWE for good. In the summer of 2010, Wrestling/{{TNA}} would put on ''[=HardCORE=] Justice'' as a "tribute" to the ECW Originals, and brought several of them in as members of the roster after the PPV under the group name "EV 2.0" (with "EV" standing for "Extreme Violence").

Despite whatever damage the WWE's version of ECW and TNA's "EV 2.0" may have done to the promotion's legacy, most fans agree: there was only one '''real''' ECW.
[[folder:Tropes present in the Original ECW]]
!!! "Extreme Championship Tropes!":
* {{Acrofatic}}: Wrestling/TheBlueMeanie and Wrestling/BamBamBigelow were definitely not slim by any means, but they both could do moonsaults.
* ActionGirl: Wrestling/BeulahMcGillicutty, Wrestling/{{Francine}} (on occasion),[[Wrestling/CarleneMoore Jazz]], Wrestling/LunaVachon (who had a brief ECW tenure). [[note]]During that time she had a feud with Stevie Richards, including a cage match at ''ECW Heat Wave 95.''[[/note]] Malia Hosaka and Wrestling/SherriMartel made some appearances in the early years.
* AllMenArePerverts:
** Joel Gertner, of course.
** Also, starting around 1999, ECW invoked this with their website featuring photoshoots of Francine, Dawn Marie and Jasmine St. Claire (porn star who was dating the Blue Boy, a slimmed-down Blue Meanie, at the time) that were billed as "Pervert Pics."
* ArchEnemy: Wrestling/EricBischoff and WCW. It ''really'' cannot be exaggerated how much the fans of ECW hated this man. While some would put WWE here as well (ECW fans hated Wrestling/VinceMcMahon just as much as Bischoff, and probably way more now), their relationship was a bit more complicated; the fanbase just wasn't aware that Vince [=McMahon=] and WWE were actively helping ECW. In ''Have A Nice Day,'' Mick Foley explained that he had specifically chosen Bischoff and WCW as a suggested alternative for Tommy Dreamer in his "Cane Dewey" promo because of how much ECW fans hated him. This was what also led Cactus to wear spoofy "Wrestling/DungeonOfDoom" and Bischoff shirts at ''ECW November to Remember 95.''
* AudienceParticipation: Taken [[{{Pun}} to the extreme]] with the infamous chair-throwing incident at the end of ''Hardcore Heaven 94''. Also, Cactus Jack hitting the Sandman with a [[FryingPanOfDoom cast-iron skillet]] at ''Double Tables'' ended the "Fans Bring the Weapons" concept. However, matches would sometimes feature fans holding up chairs so wrestlers could run their opponents into them.
* AvoidTheDreadedGRating: While WCW and the WWF were still churning out the same colorful, larger-than-life personalities, ECW was putting on a product with a grimy, more realistic edge, featuring more sex and violence than any other major promotion before--or, arguably, since. (Aside from perhaps {{Wrestling/CZW}} and the XXX-rated Women's Extreme Wrestling, both based in Philly). WCW decided to take a page from Heyman's book and inject it into their company, producing a domino effect of imitation that led to the Wrestling/AttitudeEra.
* AxCrazy: Tommy Dreamer, [=Sabu=], '''Terry Funk''', Cactus Jack, '''NEW JACK'''. You know, several fights featuring any of them are extremely sadistic.
* BilingualBonus:
** In wrestling, fans have a tendency to count to ten when a wrestler climbs the ropes and delivers punches to a dazed opponent while he's in the corner. The ECW fans took it a step further by chanting to ten ''in Spanish'' when Mexican wrestlers did it.
** Wrestling/JoeyStyles's substitution whenever a ''luchador'' did a crazy spot - "[[BigOMG AY]] [[CatchPhrase DIOS MIO!!!]]"
* BittersweetEnding: Wrestling/RobVanDam returning to wrestle Jerry Lynn... ''at ECW's final event.''
* BlackAndGreyMorality: Telling the heels and faces apart was not always an easy task. The Mutants were hesitant to accept anyone who walked into the ring to make a name for themselves. The only time the fans would rally behind someone was when said wrestler [[ActionSurvivor fought for their lives]], or made it known that they were a dominant force.
* BrickJoke: Once during a Pitbulls (#1 and #2) match, Joey said that the fans chanting "Two Two Two" made it sound like they were chanting for Mr. Wrestling II, and joked that WCW was thinking of bringing him back. Starting in 1999 on ''ECW on TNN'', when a wrestler would do a kneelift, Joey would say, "There's the Mr. Wrestling II kneelift," and Joel Gertner would chant "Two Two Two!"
* {{Catfight}}: Aside from being a Joey Styles catchphrase, it was both played straight and subverted. The ECW girls absolutely would roll around a ring trying to tear each other's hair out... and then later piledrive, powerbomb, and hurricanrana each other.
* CelebrityResemblance: Music/FaithNoMore Guy, named for his remarkable resemblance to the band's guitarist Jim Martin.
* CheapHeat:
** Heeldom was defined by more abstract things than just breaking rules. Wearing a WCW or WWF shirt would get you instant heat, something Sabu, RVD, and Foley pushed to the hilt. A lot of newcomers tended to bash ECW and complain about how they were slumming it, or marking time until they made it to the big leagues.
** The Dudleys, two of the vilest heels in wrestling history, had great heat simply due to the fact that they insulted the audience every chance they got.
** And finally, it should be noted that even the salty Irish/Italians in attendance were left speechless at times, [[RealMenLoveJesus the Sandman's crucifixion at the hands of Raven]] being an example.
* CorruptCorporateExecutive: Cyrus, a representative of "The Network", during ECW's run on The Nashville Network. WWE ended up poaching that angle with "Right to Censor".
* {{Crossover}}:
** ECW in its early days did joint promotional events with, among others, the Mid-Eastern Wrestling Federation in Maryland. More so when they started working with WWE, leading to ECW wrestlers competing on ''Raw'' and WWE guys (Flash Funk/2 Cold Scorpio, Aldo Montoya/Justin Credible and Doug Furnas and Phil [=LaFon=]) being shipped down to ECW.
** In December 1997, Dreamer, Sandman, Terry Funk, and the Dudley Boys went over to [=FMW=] for the ''FMW Super Extreme Wrestling War'' shows. This marked Wrestling/MasatoTanaka's first appearance on American television and led to him debuting in the U.S. at ''Living Dangerously'', March 1, 1998 and, in the summer, his big feud with Wrestling/MikeAwesome (known in FMW as the Gladiator), being brought to the States.
* DeepSouth:
** The Dupps.
** Buh Buh Ray Dudley sometimes [[WearingAFlagOnYourHead wore a Confederate flag do-rag on his head]].
* EvenEvilHasStandards: Played straight with the Dudley Boys showing their disgust when Justin Credible interrupted a ten-bell salute for Tommy Dreamer's deceased grandfather. However, it would be horrifically subverted after they broke Beulah's neck with the 3D.
* FatBastard: Big Val Puccio, Big Sal E. Graziano
* FireForgedFriends: The guys who are widely considered to be part of ECW's foundation have bonded into brothers-in-arms through their time with the company. This is especially evident through {{kayfabe}} in other companies over the years following the end of ECW.
* {{Foreshadowing}}: The 3/25/98 episode of ''ECW Hardcore TV'' started with a promo from Wrestling/RobVanDam, Bill Alfonso, and Wrestling/{{Sabu}} about Bam Bam Bigelow defending the [[http://www.wrestling-titles.com/us/ecw/ecw-tv.html ECW World Television Championship]] against Sabu. Before that could happen, he would have a tune-up match against RVD. In that, RVD mentioned how he beat Bigelow in the past, and that he'll beat him again so Sabu can take the TV Title and bring it to Fonzie's stable. Afterward, he said "what's yours (Sabu's) is mine, and what's mine is mine." RVD would win the World Television Championship from Bigelow himself (and hold it for 700 days, the longest title reign in ECW history, and the longest title reign for a secondary title in a major promotion since the Wrestling/HonkyTonkMan's epic run with the [[http://www.wrestling-titles.com/wwe/ic.html WWE Intercontinental Championship]] from 1987-1988. Van Dam was exactly one month away from having held the title for a full TWO YEARS. As an aside, this win was legitimately the moment that [[StarMakingRole MADE]] RVD, as the fans were cheering like crazy for him, something that continues today 15 years later.)
* {{Frenemy}}: The promotion as a whole had this relationship with the [[Wrestling/{{WWE}} WWF]]. While ECW would mock and decry WWF almost as much as they did WCW, WWF would return fire on a regular basis, and it was WWF's ChannelHop to [[Creator/SpikeTV TNN]] that would eventually help kill ECW. However, the WWF provided a lot of support to the promotion, giving them large loans, loaning out wrestlers they weren't using at the moment, and even engaging in the occasional {{Crossover}} to help promote ECW's talent and product as equal to, if very different than, WWF's.
* FunWithAcronyms: '''L'''ittle '''S'''pike '''D'''udley. His finisher? The Acid Drop.
* GarbageWrestler: The Sandman, Tommy Dreamer, [[Wrestling/{{TPE}} the Public Enemy]], Terry Funk, the Gangstas, the Bad Breed (Axl and Ian Rotten), Wrestling/BallsMahoney...
* TheGiant: [[Wrestling/AlPoling 911]], Big Guido
* GimmickMatches: Several. At ''ECW Double Tables'', February 4, 1995, ECW introduced the tables match. They also had no-rope barbed-wire matches, the Taipei (hands wrapped in tape, dipped in glue and covered with glass) Death Match, and Ultimate Jeopardy, which was a cage match with a variety of stipulations.
* GoldenAge: ECW Alumni such as Wrestling/RobVanDam and [[Wrestling/JimFullington The Sandman]] describe ECW as their favorite career period, as they had some creative control over their characters, with the logic that they know how to get themselves over best. That, combined with Paul Heyman's perfect understanding of wrestling, all came together to form an excellent work environment that allowed wrestlers to thrive without dealing with the ExecutiveMeddling that the WCW and WWF were (and in the [[HereWeGoAgain WWE]]'s case, are), known for.
* HappilyMarried: Long after ECW went out of business, Tommy Dreamer married Beulah [=McGillicutty=].
* LighterAndSofter: ''ECW on [=SyFy=]''. On the one side, you had Vince and Kevin Dunn demanding more promos and sports entertainment, and on the other side, you had [=SyFy=] execs demanding some alien or supernatural elements to the matches. Paul's concession was to toss in a growling guy with bad makeup, bill him as The Zombie (Tim Roberts), and immediately [[BitingTheHandHumor have the Sandman cane him to death.]] (he could cut a hell of a promo, though. "'''GRRR ARRRRGH'''".) They would have ''much'' better results with Kevin Thorn (Kevin Fertig) and Ariel (Shelly Martinez) of the New Breed.
* MaskedLuchador: A good deal from Wrestling/{{AAA}}, including the continuation of the Wrestling/ReyMysterioJr Wrestling/{{Psicosis}} feud but from elsewhere too such as Wrestling/MichinokuProWrestling.
* MsFanservice: Beulah [=McGillicutty=], Francine, Kimona Wanalaya, Dawn Marie, Tammy Lynn Sytch.
* NoHoldsBarredBeatdown: After the company became Extreme Championship Wrestling, pretty much every match became this in theory, as pretty much anything and everything was allowed during a match (except hitting a referee intentionally).
* OncePerEpisode: ''ECW Hardcore TV'' frequently ended with several "surprise" run-ins and the match turning into an all out brawl. When Chris Candido asked Wrestling/JimCornette to participate saying "we always have a surprise ending!", Cornette remarked that it's not much of a surprise if it's done every night.
* OneOfTheBoys: Muscular female wrestler Jazz. She wrestled the guys, and was portrayed more as a wrestler who happened to be female rather than a female wrestler, since ECW didn't have a proper women's division. Whether or not she was attractive was never discussed, most likely because she'd beat up whoever said she wasn't. The only guy who spoke about it was Tommy Dreamer, who once opined that she looked like a crack whore and inferred that "the boys in the back" would rather receive fellatio from her stable mate Jason.
* OneShotCharacter: At ''ECW Enter Sandman'', May 13, 1995, [[Wrestling/{{Tazz}} The Tazmaniac]] and 911 [[SquashMatch squashed]] the Oriental Connection, made up of UsefulNotes/{{Japan}}ese wrestlers Tsubo Genjin and Hiroyoshi Iekuda under masks. Genjin had previously defeated Tony Stetson at ''ECW Hostile City Showdown'' on April 15, and has competed for many different Japanese promotions. Iekuda is so obscure that a Website/{{Google}} search for him only turns up references to this ''one'' match, with no indication as to where ECW had found him or what, if anything, he had done before this or went on to do after this.
* PartsUnknown:
** Wrestling/TheDudleyBoys, from "Dudleyville"
** Tracy Smothers, from "Nashville, Italy"
** The Blue Meanie, from [[WesternAnimation/YellowSubmarine "Pepperland"]]
** Donn E. Allen, from "The Banks of the Sugo River"
** Sabu, from "Bombay, Michigan"
** Hack Myers, from "The Last House on the Left"
* PersonWithTheClothing: Hat Guy.
* PowerStable: Raven's Nest, the Network.
* PowerTrio: The Triple Threat (Shane Douglas and various allies)
* ReallySeventeenYearsOld: The infamous "Mass Transit incident". See the trope page for details.
* RealSongThemeTune: ECW were notable for using real songs for wrestlers' entrance music - most famously, "Enter Sandman".
* RefugeInAudacity: A ''lot'' of ECW, but '''''anything''''' out of Joel Gertner's mouth. Forget GettingCrapPastTheRadar - Gertner took the Radar out behind the toolshed and made it cry for its mama.
* RingOldies: Terry Funk, of course. In the Eastern Championship Wrestling days, Jimmy Snuka, Don Muraco, Wrestling/TitoSantana, Ivan Koloff, Nikolai Volkoff, Wrestling/StanHansen, Abdullah The Butcher and Wrestling/KevinSullivan all appeared.
* RippedFromTheHeadlines: The caning of Michael Fay in UsefulNotes/{{Singapore}} led to the famous Simgapore Caning Match between the Sandman and Tommy Dreamer, something Paul Heyman acknowledged on ''The Rise and Fall of ECW'' DVD.
* ScaryBlackMan: '''''New Jack.''''' Full stop.
* TakeThat:
** The Blue World Order. As Joey Styles put it during the first ''ECW One Night Stand'' event:
--->'''Joey Styles:'''If any gimmick never deserved to make a dime ''and made a whole boatload of cash, '''this is it!''''' And the best is [[Wrestling/{{WCW}} they]] couldn't sue us because of [[Wrestling/NewWorldOrder parody]]!
** And then there was Paul Heyman's infamous shoot promo on The Nashville Network (later The National Network, and now Spike TV) at the end of ECW's run. "Hey, Network - throw us off the air! '''I DARE YOU!'''"
** Naming a jobber "Joel Hartgood," a shot at [[http://www.twawrestling.com TWA (Tri-State) Wrestling Alliance]] promoter Joel Goodhart.[[note]]Tod Gordon originally co-ran TWA and many early ECW wrestlers (Sandman, Larry Winters, JT Smith) got their starts there.[[/note]]
* UnnecessaryRoughness: The infamous Barbed Wire Match between Sabu and Terry Funk; the Mass Transit Incident.
* VitriolicBestBuds: Believe it or not, this was the relationship between ECW and WWE. Despite several employees, most notably Wrestling/JerryLawler, openly admitting to ''hating'' ECW, WWE did damn near everything they could to help ECW get off the ground. Both did quite a bit of cross promotion, and Vince even helped ECW get out of a bit of financial trouble from time to time. Really, most of the hate seems to stem from the fact that WWE replaced ECW on TNN, ultimately leading to the latter's dissolution, and that's more TNN's fault than WWE's.
* WorldOfBadass: Compared to WWF and WCW at the time.
* WinBackTheCrowd: Invoked. ''ECW Hardcore Heaven 95'', July 1, 1995, featured a tag team match with Chad Austin and The Broadstreet Bully (Tony Stetson) vs. Donn E. Allen and Dino Sendoff that featured blown spots, with the crowd turning on it and Joey even ''[[LampshadeHanging saying]]'', "This match isn't very good," and, figuring that the match probably wouldn't make TV, using it to take a shot at ''[=WCW=] Slamboree'', a [=PPV=] which, from 1993-1995, would feature RingOldies along with wrestlers from the regular roster. Then "Frankenstein" by the Edgar Winter Group hit, bringing out Paul E. and 911. 911 chokeslammed all four guys to the cheers of the crowd.
* {{Worthy Opponent}}s: RVD-Jerry Lynn is the most notable of this, but the Eliminators vs. the Gangstas is such that New Jack and John Kronus would become a tag team themselves when Mustafa Saed and Perry Saturn left ECW in 1997.
* WouldHitAGirl: Absolutely everyone, but most notable in the case of Tommy Dreamer's repeated piledriving of Raven's female companions. According to Francine (a recipient of kendo stick shots to the kisser), the idea was to fill a niche the WWF Divas weren't willing to go at the time. However, as Bill Alfonso famously discovered at ''As Good As It Gets'', September 20, 1997, sometimes they hit back.[[note]]This was the famous match, which started as Dreamer/Beulah vs. RVD/Fonzie, where Beulah busted Alfonso open with a cookie sheet and Alfonso ultimately lost some 30% of his blood. Beulah won by countering Alfonso's intended powerbomb with a [=Beulahcanrana=].[[/note]]
* WrestlingDoesntPay:
** In this case, literally; when the promotion declared bankruptcy, some wrestlers were still owed hundreds, if not thousands, in back pay from Paul Heyman.
** This was one of the reasons that WWE didn't immediately purchase the assets of ECW following its demise, instead waiting for the bankruptcy court to go about its business (though they managed to earn a stern warning from the same bankruptcy court for utilizing ECW trademarks during the Invasion period, necessitating a quick-fix rename of the WCW/ECW faction to "The Alliance"). WWE was actually listed as a creditor in ECW's bankruptcy, to the tune of $587,500 - which was, not-so-coincidentally, very close to the amount listed as the value of ECW's tape library.
** Many of the wrestlers did double duty through much of the promotion's existence - Stevie Richards would take calls, Bubba Ray Dudley booked venues, Tommy Dreamer dealt with shirts and merchandise, Taz designed logos, etc. Of course, Paul Heyman handled the finances, and we all know how well that went...
* WrestlingFamily:
** In kayfabe, the Dudleys were all fathered by the same man (a traveling salesman), but were born to different mothers.
** C.W. Anderson was related to the famous Anderson family in kayfabe. In real life, like all the Andersons, there's no actual relation, just a strong resemblance.
** Axl and Ian Rotten, not really related.
* WrestlingMonster: Big Dick Dudley, 911, Sal E. Graziano, Sid, Mike Awesome, Rhyno.
* YouHaveToHaveJews: Tod Gordon, Paul E., Joel Gertner, and Raven. This ruffled some feathers when Paul colluded in Sandman's crucifixion, and it was suggested by some that they nail Sandman to a Jewish Star and see how ''that'' goes over with Raven's friends. Tod and Paul quickly got cold feet and told Raven to apologize for the shoot, which he grudgingly did. Raven, who is not religious, still insists it was a good angle and had the desired impact.
-->'''Terry Funk:''' Leave God out of our business. ''[laughter]'' Doesn't he have ''enough'' to do? We don't want to drag him into ''our'' business, do we?

[[folder:Tropes present in WWE ECW]]
* AbortedArc:
** Wrestling/RobVanDam's dual WWE/ECW Championship reigns had to be cut short after Van Dam and Wrestling/{{Sabu}} got busted for marijuana possession.
** Wrestling/KurtAngle was drafted to ECW to get people to watch the show. About a month and a half later, he was released (allegedly for refusing to go to rehab).
** Wrestling/ChrisBenoit was supposed to succeed Bobby Lashley as ECW Champion and work a program with Wrestling/CMPunk. [[AuthorExistenceFailure Then Atlanta happened]]. He was promptly replaced by Johnny Nitro, who would soon rechristen himself as Wrestling/JohnMorrison.
* TheAce:
** Wrestling/BobbyLashley. He didn't even ''lose'' the ECW title -- he was forced to vacate it because he got drafted to RAW. Since he was never beaten for it, this technically makes him the strongest wrestler in WWECW's brief history.
** After Lashley left, Wrestling/CMPunk was this to the vast majority of the WWECW roster, to the point that both the ECW Originals and the New Breed tried to recruit him knowing that whichever stable did would eventually win the feud. Unlike Lashley, Punk ''did'' lose the title -- in a No DQ match, after being speared by then-World Heavyweight Champion Wrestling/{{Edge}}. Punk would later have the last laugh after he cashed in his MITB briefcase on Edge later that year to win his first world title.
** Wrestling/{{Christian}}, who was the only two-time ECW Champion in the history of the show besides Lashley. The only reason he lost to Ezekiel Jackson is because ''every heel'' on ECW's roster interfered with the match to make sure he lost.
* AllLoveIsUnrequited: The only two romantic pairings on this show that went anywhere were Kevin Thorn and Ariel (Shelly Martinez), and Zack Ryder and Rosa Mendes.
* BastardBoyfriend: Mike Knox to Wrestling/KellyKelly.
* BigBad: William Regal was unquestionably this during the show's last year of existence.
* [[BShow C Show]]: By its last year it was barely above ''Superstars'' in importance.
* CurbStompBattle:
** Wrestling/ChavoGuerreroJr lost the ECW Championship to Wrestling/{{Kane}} at ''Wrestling/WrestleMania XXIV''...in '''eight seconds'''.
** Yoshi Tatsu's debut match, where he knocked out Wrestling/SheltonBenjamin with one kick.
** Christian's title defense against Wrestling/WilliamRegal at ''Wrestling/SummerSlam 2009'' ended in ''seconds'' after Christian jumped Regal and hit the [[FinishingMove Killswitch]] while Regal taking off his coat. He payed for it immediately afterwards when Regal and his lackeys Ezekiel Jackson and Vladimir Kozlov beat him down for it.
* HateSink: The New Breed stable were this for ECW's hardcore audience, encompassing everything the Mutants hated about ECW's revival.
* HijackedByGanon: A rare ''heroic'' version. Christian took over ECW immediately upon his return and basically carried it through its last year. This was because his original return storyline was spoiled on the Internet, forcing ECW's top face at the time, Matt Hardy, to take his place and turn heel in the process.
* LastOfHisKind: By 2009, Wrestling/TommyDreamer was the last of the ECW Originals on WWE ECW (and the company, if you discount Wrestling/ChrisJericho and Wrestling/ReyMysterio).
* LoveAtFirstSight: One look at Wrestling/RosaMendes and Wrestling/ZackRyder was ''instantly'' smitten.
* OlderHeroVsYoungerVillain:
** The ECW Originals vs New Breed feud. Note that the ECW Originals weren't ''entirely'' against the younger generation, as seen by their attempts to recruit Wrestling/CMPunk.
** A lot of feuds on ECW were like this, because two of the top faces over the course of its existence were Wrestling/MattHardy and Wrestling/Christian, both of whom were a part of WWE during the Attitude Era. In fact, Christian's only feuds on ECW that ''didn't'' invoke this trope were those he had with Wrestling/WilliamRegal and Wrestling/TommyDreamer, who were also active during the Monday Night Wars.
* PowerStable: Three major ones: the ECW Originals, the New Breed, and the Ruthless Roundtable.
* PopularityPower: With the exception of Bobby Lashley, everyone mentioned in SpotlightStealingSquad below were the most popular wrestler on ECW during their era. Considering how all three of these wrestlers wouldn't have been out of place in the ''original'' ECW, that was only to be expected.
* PreppyName: When Christian called him "Bill", William Regal went on a tirade about how he was not be called that common person's name. So, Christian proceeded to refer to him as "Bill" for the rest of his ECW run.
* ReasonableAuthorityFigure: Subverted with ECW General Manager Armando Alejandro Estrada, but played straight with his successors Wrestling/TeddyLong and [[Wrestling/TarynTerrell Tiffany]].
* RoguesGallery: The majority of the roster was this for whoever was TheFace of the show at the time.
* SingleWomanSeeksGoodMan: During her first major storyline, Kelly Kelly had a major crush on CM Punk. Later on, she chafed with the other two members of Extreme Expose when she fell for the kind Wrestling/BallsMahoney over Wrestling/TheMiz.
* SpotlightStealingSquad: Yes. ECW was proto-NXT, a show where many young wrestlers were sent to for experience on TV. After the annual WWE draft, the brand's major storylines would be centered on whoever was the most popular wrestler on the show that year.
** Wrestling/BobbyLashley. According to Wrestling/PaulHeyman, Wrestling/VinceMcMahon outright told him that ECW was revived solely to put him over. Lashley won the ECW Title, started feuding with Vince and subsequently moved to RAW after the 2007 Draft.
** After Lashley left, Wrestling/CMPunk had the spotlight. Punk was the sole ECW competitor at ''Wrestling/WrestleMania 23'''s Money in the Bank ladder match (a match he almost won). Afterwards, ECW's most important storyline in 2007, the ECW Originals vs the New Breed, eventually centered around both factions trying to get Punk to join them. By that point, not only was it obvious that the storyline was really about getting Punk over, but also that Punk was the only person involved who had any real future with the company. Once that storyline was over, Punk's ECW Title Chase dominated the show for the rest of the year. He would lose the title to Wrestling/ChavoGuerreroJr (thanks to interference from Wrestling/{{Edge}}) at the beginning of 2008, win his first Money in the Bank ladder match at ''Wrestling/WrestleMania 24'' that year, and would be drafted to RAW in the summer (and would win his first world title the following week).
** Wrestling/MattHardy was the centerpiece of the show after Punk moved to RAW, but since he had a more varied and experienced roster to work with, he didn't have to carry it as much. Like Punk above, Matt's ECW Championship Chase was the main storyline for the rest of 2008. Come 2009, after losing the title to Wrestling/JackSwagger, Matt was revealed to be his brother Wrestling/JeffHardy's mystery attacker and rejoined the ''Wrestling/SmackDown'' roster.
** Jeff's mystery attacker was originally supposed to be Wrestling/{{Christian}}, but after the fans predicted it and spoiled it on the internet, it was switched to Matt and Christian took Matt's place at ECW. Christian would soon win the ECW Championship from Swagger and, aside from a brief reign for the retiring Wrestling/TommyDreamer, would continue to hold it for the last year of ECW's existence. He would lose the title on the brand's final episode to Ezekiel Jackson in order to help put the latter over.
* TalkShowWithFists:
** The Abraham Washington Show.
** MVP's VIP Lounge also had an episode on this show to help build up the Money in the Bank Ladder match at ''[=WrestleMania=]'' XXV.
** The Peep Show also made a return on this show, though the existence of the Abraham Washington Show meant it didn't appear often.
* TeethClenchedTeamwork: Wrestling/TheMiz and Wrestling/JohnMorrison's initial partnership, until they won the tag titles and started bonding over their similarities (such as their hatred of Wrestling/CMPunk).
'''''E-C-DUB! E-C-DUB! E-C-DUB!'''''