Paper Thin Disguise / Professional Wrestling

  • It's a standard part of any Charlie Brown from Outta Town storyline.
  • Andrι the Giant: In the spring of 1986 (following his WrestleMania 2 battle royal victory), Andre requested time off to go on a tour of Japan, heal from legitimate injuries, and begin filming scenes from a movie he was hired to star in, The Princess Bride. At the time, he was engaged in a 3-year-old feud with Big John Studd over whom was the true giant of wrestling, and a storyline was contrived to have Andre "miss" several high-profile tag-team matches (with a partner of his choice) against Studd and King Kong Bundy. Eventually, at Bobby Heenan's behest, WWF president Jack Tunney "suspended" Andre. Later in the summer of 1986, a masked wrestler, identifying himself as the "Giant Machine" appeared, targeting – along with other masked "Machine" wrestlers – Studd and Bundy. The villains insisted that the Giant Machine was in fact Andre. They were right, except they were unable to mask Andre to prove his true identity (much to the delight of fans), and the WWF's lead announcers, usually Vince McMahon, Gorilla Monsoon, or Bruno Sammartino, speculated that the "Giant Machine" might be one of several famous Japanese wrestlers.
    • Indeed, Bundy and Studd never were able to prove their case to the fans, which – had they succeeded – Andre would have been "fired" (for circumventing Tunney's suspension). However, the storyline was always left open so that if Andre's health forced his retirement, the "Giant Machine" would have been unmasked. However, Andre's health held up enough and – after finishing filming of The Princess Bride and concluding his Japanese tour – he was "reinstated" ... and a heel turn later that led to his famous WrestleMania III match with Hulk Hogan etched his name in history.
    • At the height of the Bundy/Studd-Machines feud, Heenan introduced his own stable of "masked" wrestlers during a segment of "The Flower Shop." It was obviously Studd and Bundy wearing paper masks, and they quickly revealed themselves to scornfully mock Andre.
  • John Cena was storyline fired from WWE following Survivor Series 2010, but didn't actually leave the company (since he's kind of the biggest money-making machine WWE has at the moment). In his place at house shows, WWE trotted out Juan Cena, until he was "re-hired".
  • Hulk Hogan's Mr. America disguise came about after he was "fired" in 2003. When he left the company, footage appeared revealing that Hogan took off his mask after a match.
  • In TNA, what disguise did Sting wear when he attacked Rob Van Dam from the crowd? A Sting mask.

Alternative Title(s): Pro Wrestling