YMMV / Kurt Angle

  • Broken Base: Over whether or not Kurt should retire permanently. On one hand, Kurt can still go and pull out decent matches with relatively little effort. On the other hand, his body is broken down from years of abuse and his best days are clearly long behind himnote . In fact, the IWC has speculated that one of the main reasons why Kurt hasn't been re-signed by WWE yet is because he wants to wrestle, and with their new standards concerning the health of their performers, there is no way in hell the company can clear him to wrestle the way he wants to.
  • Creator's Pet: In TNA, before Hogan & Bischoff turned up. To put it simply, Angle ended Samoa Joe's undefeated streak in his first match; held every championship the company had at the same time for an entire month, including several weeks where he was tag team champions on his own; hijacked another wrestler's popular stable; and was so prominent on TNA's programming at one point that people began saying TNA stood for "Total Nonstop Angle". No matter how popular Angle was and how much star power he had, the fans did not want to see him that much and that often.
  • Crosses the Line Twice: Angle lampshading WWE's inability to get him over as a heel by declaring that he hates black people and wants to make Jesus tap out, then getting a huge pop for saying that he can say anything he wants and still get cheered because everyone knows that he is the greatest wrestler in the world.
  • Crowning Music of Awesome: "Gold Medal" is catchy as all hell. And there's the iconic horn stabs of his WWE theme...
  • Follow the Leader: Kurt Angle's success both inside and outside the company has been treated by WWE as a well that they could occasionally tap into for establishing the characters of guys with amateur wrestling backgrounds.
    • The World's Greatest Tag Team, Charlie Haas and Shelton Benjamin, were introduced to mainline WWE programming as his understudies and once breaking off from him were given a heroic rock theme similar to his in all but melody actually titled "Heroes".
    • Jack Swagger's All-American wrestling background was used to create his nicknames, "The All-American American" and "The Real American", centered around a character with varying degrees of relative emphasis on his Patriotic Fervor and arrogant wrestling pride. He also started using the Ankle Lock as his main submission finisher.
    • WWE NXT's American Alpha tag team of Chad Gable and Jason Jordan is an outright love letter to Kurt Angle, as both guys contain elements of Angle himself as well as Haas and Benjamin respectively. Gable represents the younger Angle from the Attitude Era—the dorky arrogant guy who's also somehow endearing or funny and yet still dangerous because he can out-grapple anyone at will—along with Haas, being the more technically skilled white guy of the team. Jordan represents the matured Angle of the Ruthless Aggression Era—the intense badass wrestling machine who's come to own just how good he is and is capable of going on nigh-unstoppable tears—along with Benjamin, being the more pure athletic black guy of the team. This one took special notice not only from fans, but from Angle himself, as Kurt has said in an interview during his TNA farewell tour that he'd like to return to WWE as a part-time wrestler but regular character, serving as a mentor to Jordan and Gable with the intent of elevating them.
  • Grew the Beard
    • Can you believe the Olympic Gold Medalist who won with a freaking broken neck wasn't really over when he first debuted as a pro wrestler? In fact, he was quite the opposite of over, as fans found his mat based style generic and boring. Then he snapped and became the violent "shoot style" wrestler everyone loved hate.
    • More like "Shaved the Head"; Angle was always considered a great wrestler, but the WWE never gave him a great reign as champion, and he always seemed to be more of a goofball than a badass, until he lost a Hair match against Edge and shaved his head in 2002. The same year, he got his first great world title run, and people started to see him as not just a great wrestler, but the greatest wrestler of all time.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • If you've witnessed him in the height of his Eagleland gimmick in the early 2000s, it's hard not to chuckle seeing him in Warrior, where he's a Fake Russian.
    • In 2007, he said WWE would be better off if Triple H stopped wrestling and just ran things behind the things with himself out of the picture. Come 2014 where Triple H runs NXT and people are not only calling for Triple H to stop wrestling, they want him to take over WWE's behind the scene operations completely.
  • Magnificent Bastard: The secret behind his insane popularity in the ring is that he's a rare heel in the business who doesn't need run-ins or heel tactics to win, but can defeat the babyfaces by simply being better than them and making them tap out. The best example of this is Royal Rumble 2003, with a clean victory over Chris Benoit in one of the greatest matches of all time. There is a promo in which he says he can say anything he wants (including not being a fan of "the black people" and wanting to make Jesus tap out) and the "idiots" will still cheer him because he's the best wrestler in the company. The crowd, of course, cheers because it's true, it's damn true.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • Regardless of whether Kurt was a face or heel, the WWE fans would always chant "You suck!" in time with his music. When he was a heel, they meant it. As a face, it was a weird sign of affection by the fans.
    • Angle can do anything "with a broken freakin' neck!"
    • "Where's your gold medals? Oh, that's right—you don't HAVE any!"
  • Never Live It Down/Old Shame: An old commercial Kurt did for a local pizzeria shortly after winning the Olympic gold. It's highlighted by having a green pepper and a pepperoni slice wrestling on the pizza itself while Kurt watches in amusement. The Rock went so far as to show the commercial on Raw to embarrass Kurt. It worked.
  • One-Scene Wonder: He wrestled one match for Ultimate Pro Wrestling in California; a match with Christopher Daniels that was considered a candidate for the best match of the year 2000.
  • Shocking Swerve: After being released from WWE in 2006 (allegedly) due to his refusal to go into drug rehab, he then jumped to TNA in a move that shocked practically everyone.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: Samoa Joe vs Kurt Angle was the most financially successful feud in TNA history, the most common criticism being that it could have made more money if it had not been rushed through, damaging Joe's drawing power in the process. It would become a running theme with similar subsequent TNA feuds also being rushed through, to diminishing returns (while things like Aces & Eights seeming to stick around forever).
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/KurtAngle