Follow TV Tropes


Wrestling / Kurt Angle

Go To
Everyone's Olympic Hero.

—The fans, whether he's a Face or a Heel. (It's an Insult of Endearment.)

Kurt Steven Angle (born December 9, 1968) is a retired American professional wrestler best known for his seven-year tenure in WWE, where he was referred to as "professional wrestling's only Olympic gold medalist" (which is legit; he won gold medals for wrestling at the 1996 Summer Olympics WITH A BROKEN FREAKIN' NECK!). He was also known for a decade-long tenure at TNA, before returning to WWE in 2017, where he wrestled his final matches as an in-ring competitor. Angle then worked for WWE as a road agent until being released in April 2020.

The first to be declared a "Future Legend"note  by the Cauliflower Alley Club, he's a 13-time world champion, having being a four-time WWF/E Champion, a one-time World Heavyweight Champion (WWE), a one-time WCW Champion (he won it in the WWE during The InVasion Angle), a six-time TNA World Heavyweight Champion and a one-time IWGP Heavyweight Champion (in the Inoki Genome Federation). He was also selected to join WWE's Hall of Fame class of 2017 and then returned to Raw as its new general manager, serving in this capacity until December 2018 (though Baron Corbin had "replaced" Angle in an acting capacity for four months by then).

As his neck injuries and personal troubles began to catch up to him, Angle announced in February 2019 that he would retire from in-ring competition, challenging Corbin for one final match at WrestleMania 35. There, Corbin defeated Angle, ending his 20-year career as a wrestler. Both he and fellow WWE competitor Batista wrestled their last matches in the event. Angle continued to work for WWE as a backstage producer until he (for the second time) and dozens of other wrestlers and staff were released in April 2020.


  • The Ace: Oh it's true! It's damn true! In fact, while John Cena and Edge got the big pushes after Brock Lesnar left, it was Angle who was really the top draw in WWE. He was just held back by that neck (and a myriad of other problems).
  • Action Dad: To Jason Jordan in Kayfabe, albeit unknowingly until the reveal.
  • All-American Face: Played straight when he's a face, such as after 9/11 and he beat then heel "Stone Cold" Steve Austin. Subverted when he's a heel. In his first match he was played up as a face coming from an amateur and Olympic background, but the crowd was bored, he was told in the ring that he was going to be a heel and he ran with it. He continued seeming to be one of these, but he came across as a condescending Jerk Jock.
  • Always Someone Better: Kurt was on the winning side of a very one-sided rivalry with Mic Tierney in Memphis Power Pro Wrestling.
  • Ambiguously Gay: Kurt's had... strange interactions with a lot of wrestlers, namely Rey Mysterio Jr., who he called a boy and said he was going to manhandle, and Brock Lesnar who actually kissed him. Also once kissed The Big Show (although it was mostly to disarm him long enough to pick him up for the Angle Slam).
  • Appropriated Appellation: Claimed on the March 11, 2002, Raw to have taught "The Big Red Machine" Kane a lesson and called himself "The Big Red White and Blue Machine". Edge responded by saying that Kurt was "just really white."
    • And, of course, the crowd chant of "You suck!" during his theme music.
  • Arch-Enemy: Chris Benoit, Brock Lesnar, "Stone Cold" Steve Austin, Triple H, The Rock, Eddie Guerrero, Sting, Jeff Jarrett and Baron Corbin.
  • As Himself: In Zombies vs. Pro Wrestlers.
  • Ax-Crazy: Combined this with Trash the Set.
  • Badass Boast: From New Year's Revolution 2006, after parodying politically incorrect villains in the last of many vain attempts to get heel heat against John Cena, he says this to lampshade exactly why it failed.
    Angle: Everyone, all these fans know, that I am the greatest wrestler in the world!
  • Bad Boss: As the general manager of SmackDown, he started out decent enough, but gradually got worse as time went on; his last real act of benevolence was trying to pacify the Big Show. Averted with his run as TNA Director of Wrestling Operations (see Reasonable Authority Figure for more on that).
  • Bald of Evil: His head has been shaved since 2002, so all his Heel runs from that year onwards automatically invokes this trope.
  • Battle Strip: If you're in the ring with Kurt Angle and the straps come down, chances are, things are about to go down.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Angle presented himself as an All-American Face, but he came across as a condescending Jerk Jock. He went full Jerk Jock later on, openly bragging about how he'd make other wrestlers tap out or break their ankles.
  • Bittersweet Ending: He ended his 20+ year career at WrestleMania 35, being defeated cleanly by heel Baron Corbin. The match wasn't the legendary send-off a wrestler of Angle's caliber deserved (Angle was being forced into retirement because he honestly couldn't go any more and Corbin isn't a talented enough worker to pick up the slack), Corbin was considered by everyone to be an unworthy final opponent, and it was generally agreed that Angle deserved much better.note  But at least he got a formal retirement match, unlike some other legendary wrestlers such as Mick Foley or even Hulk Hogan.
  • Broken Record: It's as if we need to be constantly reminded that Kurt is an Olympic gold medalist (WITH A BROKEN FREAKIN' NECK!)).
  • Buffy Speak: Called Jeff Jarrett a "piece of scummy".
  • Bullying a Dragon:
    • Poured milk on The Undertaker's motorcycle on the July 6, 2000 SmackDown.
    • Kevin Nash powerbombed Angle for his promo on the October 18, 2007 TNA Impact.
      Angle: Yeah, Dr. Nashnote  Your advice sucks. Your jokes aren't even funny. And you're a disgrace to the business.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: There are two sides to Kurt Angle. One is the Wrestling Machine, an absolute badass in the ring who's fast, strong, and resilient, a lethally good ring general that can tap your ass out with his ankle lock at any time while also being to able to withstand any sort of damage given to him by his opponents. The other side is a total goofball that enjoys spraying gallons of milk on people, singing Shawn Michaels's theme song with his own lyrics and who's attempt at being a Badass Biker is to ride a scooter down the ring
  • The Cameo: After fleeing from pro wrestling for fear of his reputation after seeing Raven's "crucifixion" of The Sandman in person, Angle agreed to return and participate in an NWA Battle Royal. This got him noticed and snatched up by WWE.
  • Card-Carrying Villain: As the leader of a transitional alliance of self-professed bad guys in between the Angle Alliance and the Main Event Mafia.
  • Catchphrase: "It's true, it's (DAMN) true!" in WWE, which he changed to "It's real, it's (DAMN) real!" in TNA.
  • Charles Atlas Superpower: Is an average-sized man and definitely not one of the biggest wrestlers out there. Still doesn't stop him from German-Suplexing and Angle-Slamming even the likes of The Big Show and Mark Henry.
  • Choke Holds: When he went to WWE's ECW, Tazz tried to get over how much more extreme the program was by pointing out all the chokes Angle used that were illegal in regular WWE (remember that during his active wrestling career, Tazz used a choke hold, the Tazmission, as his finisher). The angle ended up going nowhere though since Angle went to TNA.
  • Celebrity Endorsement: Of the Pizza Outlet restaurants of Pittsburgh
  • Cloudcuckoolander:
    • His interviews in 2006, after he joined TNA, which is why he was known as "Krazy Kurt" by fans. Among his outrageous claims at the time was that he claimed to carry Hulk Hogan to a five-star match in 2002.
    • One bizarre segment had Kurt Angle stumbling upon his then-wife, Karen, canoodling on a couch with AJ Styles. Angle jumps to the conclusion that Karen has come to try to win him back. She denies this but Angle angrily tells her that so long as he's with Samoa Joe (as tag team partners opponents at Lockdown, that is) that their marriage is on hold. He then chases Karen into Styles' arms. The whole thing comes across as Angle leaving his own wife in the tender loving care of AJ Styles until such time as he can be bothered to be a husband to her! See for yourself.
  • Companion Cube: His gold medals. In 2001, Chris Benoit stole his medals and challenged him to a two-out-of-three falls match at that year's Judgment Day PPV for them. In a 2003 promo on SmackDown Angle interrupted Benoit's promo, when he referred to his medals as "his kids" and the WWE Title as "his wife".
  • Crowd Chant: "Liar!" when Angle, wanting a TNA world title shot, called Bobby Lashley the most talented wrestler he had seen in the last ten years.
  • Crowd Song:
    • Regardless of whether he was a face or a heel, WWE fans would always chant "You suck!" in time with his music.
    • At one point, Kurt became enraged at the crowd and demanded that they stop while restarting his entrance walk. After three tries, Kurt gave up and had the General Manager censor the crowd out.
    • After returning from injury once (as a face), he said, "You have no idea how much I missed that," and got the whole crowd to sing it.
  • Determinator: Here are some events that he's able to do with a broken neck:
    • Winning a gold medal at the 1996 Olympics.
    • Endured several brutal attacks from "Stone Cold" Steve Austin, including kicking out of three Stone Cold Stunners at SummerSlam 2001 and taking a piledriver on the concrete floor on the SmackDown before Unforgiven 2001.
    • Holding off neck surgery to compete at WrestleMania XIX.
    • Hanging toe-to-toe with Lesnar for a full hour in an iron man match.
  • Distressed Dude: Ok, he got away but Aces And Eights still threw him in the bed of a pickup truck and sped off.
  • Dented Iron: Those complains about broken freakin' necks? Very much legitimate, and they did not go away after he left the WWE. This is a seemingly legitimate photo of him in a wheelchair at a TNA UK show (and not the wheelchair skit he did), which might begin to indicate how much excruciating pain he must have been the entire time.
  • Dork Knight: Angle's character was a supremely skilled athlete who acted like a nerdy, strait-laced teacher on a sitcom. For example, he was obsessed with milk like "Stone Cold" Steve Austin was with beer, and he was completely clueless to innuendoes. This made him a bad guy in the Darker and Edgier Attitude Era.
  • Dramatic Irony: Despite being a legitimate Olympic gold medalist, Kurt has never won any title match in WrestleMania.
  • Eagleland: If he is feuding with a foreigner, type 1 as a Face, Type 2 as a heel.
  • Enemy Mine: With Fortune against Jeff Jarrett and Immortal.
  • Evil Cripple: Okay, he was rehabbing an injury rather than being outright crippled but he was still an evil authority figure in a wheel chair on SmackDown for awhile.
  • Evil Versus Evil: Kurt Angle, Luther Reigns and Mark Jindrak versus JBL's Cabinet. Kurt Angle even Bound and Gagged non wrestler Joy Giovanni and shoved her into JBL's limo in an attempt to frame him. (His "publicist" Amy Weber was feuding with Joy and Big Show was very protective of her, giving a believable motive and hopeful response from an angry giant)
  • Exact Words: Said he was done with wrestling matches at the end of 2010 but returned at Genesis 2011 to answer Jeff Jarrett's open challenge. When Jarrett called him out on it, Kurt pointed out that Jarrett himself said it would be an "exhibition" instead of a "match".
    • After losing his farewell match to Baron Corbin at Wrestlemania 35, he came back out on the RAW after and wished him luck in his career. "Bad luck."
  • Fake-Hair Drama: After losing his hair vs hair match he would strap on wigs to hide his baldness. Though he eventually embraced it.
  • Finishing Move: The Ankle Lock. Though he did not invent it (Ken Shamrock used that move during his WWF run between 1998-1999), he made it popular. He would fall victim to the Angle Lock himself during a Wrestlemania match with Chris Benoit, although he in turn caught Benoit with the Crippler Crossface, which was Benoit's Finishing Move. If he prefers to win by pinfall instead, he uses the Angle Slam (a.k.a. the Olympic Slam in non-WWE promotions).
  • Foreign Wrestling Heel: Angle added hints of it to his condescending Jerk Jock persona during shows in Canada when he'd call himself "your Olympic hero" despite winning his medals for the U.S. He was a lot more blatant at the WWE's 2003 No Way Out event. See Politically Incorrect Villain below.
  • Game-Breaking Injury: He ultimately lost the TNA World Title in October of 2011 to James Storm due to a knee injury. That same knee injury kept Angle from competing in the 2012 Olympics, effectively ending his hyped up return to amateur wrestling.
  • Gosh Dang It to Heck!:
    • Early in his career, and whenever he's face.
    • In his second book, Foley Is Good...And the Real World is Faker Than Wrestling, Mick Foley pointed out how Angle's goofing around with Edge and Christian in 2000 contributed to making the shows "downright nerdy."
  • Handicapped Badass:
    • Really did win an Olympic gold medal despite having, quote, "a broken freaking neck" at the time.
    • Despite having injured ribs in his Judgment Day 2006 match against Mark Henry, he was the only one who was ultimately able to walk out of the place under his own power.
  • Heel–Face Revolving Door: It helps that he's good at pulling off both.
  • A Hero to His Hometown: Of Pittsburgh, always. He's treated to roaring receptions by the crowd whenever he appears there.
  • Hidden Depths: Angle is known, rightfully so, as one of the greatest grappling technicians in the history of pro wrestling (he really did win two gold medals in the Olympic), but he's also a very capable brawler, as he proved when he faced Shane McMahon at 2001's King of the Ring, and his top-rope moonsault is a thing of beauty.
    • He once apparently defeated fellow legitimate wrestler and genetic freak of nature Brock Lesnar in a proper wrestling match backstage (Brock was a national champion, but so was Kurt, and he won two Olympic gold medals, which is on a vastly higher level). Onstage, he was one of the few people who could genuinely be considered a rival to Brock, and Kurt is two inches shorter and 40 to 60 pounds lighter.
  • Hijacked by Ganon: In 2008, did this to Christian's Coalition when he turned it into the Angle Alliance.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard:
    • Kurt Angle's run as Memphis Power Pro's Heavyweight Champion was brought to an end by his own student, Steve Bradley.
    • Whenever Kurt attempts a moonsault, it's practically guaranteed his opponent will move out of the way. Averted when he hit it on Hardcore Holly ... breaking Holly's arm in the process.
    • When Kurt attempts a spear, it's practically guaranteed he will miss and go shoulder-first into the ringpost.
    • Not that he needs the advantage, of course, but Angle was prone to having steel chairs rebound off the ropes into his face when he attempted to use them.
  • Horrible Judge of Character:
    • Trusted Hulk Hogan when he said that Dixie Carter was aware of his wife's cheating ways. Yeah, that's right, he's trusting the Manipulative Bastard who screwed Dixie out of her company, has a vendetta against Sting, kept Kurt Angle away from the title and employed the Jarretts to aid in his conspiracy, and is the present Big Bad of the company who'd have every reason to make him hate Dixie Carter (who it's been acknowledged on-air suspended Jeff Jarrett from power upon learning about the affair) and join Immortal. Well, since Sting became Genre Savvy, someone has to be Genre Blind...
    • There's also trusting Garett Bischoff, the upstart son of a biker aficionado, and Wes Brisco, the cat-grinning rookie who came to him around the same time as the Aces and Eights and was never seen in the same place as the masked member with the shoulder-length hair.
  • Hot-Blooded: After he went crazy from all the booing he got upon arriving in the WWF
  • How Much More Can He Take?:
    • King of the Ring 2001 - Kurt wrestled three matches in one night, including a 26 minute Street Fight match with Shane McMahon that was more violent than expected thanks to a Special Effects Failure or two. (The reason he wrestled three matches in a single night? Shane, who intentionally interfered in Kurt's King of the Ring tournament matches to ensure that he would both move on to the finals and lose the tournament to weaken him up for the Street Fight.)
    • As Kurt's building neck injuries reached the point of being acknowledged on live TV, this has become a larger element of his matches.
  • Idiot Ball:
    • Not only did he mentor and trust Garett Bischoff and Wes Brisco, he was the one responsible for getting Brisco hired. Good job letting The Mole in, Kurt!
    • The week after he unmasked the Vice President of Aces & Eights, what should've happened was a backstage scene with D'Lo Brown being summarily questioned, berated, and accused by Dixie Carter and other TNA officials because Kurt Angle told them that he was the VP. Instead, Kurt decided to sit on the information for over a week and go for the big reveal on TV. Even worse, when Wes Brisco came out to draw him into a brawl, he took the bait instead of making the reveal then and there…leading to D'Lo coming out amongst the other officials to break up the fight, putting him in perfect position to low blow a crazed Angle and make the reveal on the Aces & Eights' terms.
  • Important Haircut:
    • The Hair vs. Hair match was Vince's idea, as Kurt's hairline was receding rapidly and he wanted Kurt to shave his head in order to look tougher. Once Kurt stopped whining about it in Kayfabe, he inverted from a faux-manipulative goofball with occasional moments of brilliance into a serious competitor with occasional comedic moments.
    • Shaved the Big Show bald after tranquilizing him. The Big Show then said he was going to stay bald to remind himself of why he doesn't like Kurt Angle.
  • Insane Troll Logic:
    • In summer of 2008 he accused his then-wife Karen of only refusing to forgive him his faults because she was having an affair with his teammate AJ Styles. Completely ignoring the fact that Kurt basically gave her to AJ Styles to get him and Tomko to leave Christian's Coalition, and even then it's implied AJ, despite becoming smitten with Karen, never took advantage.
    • Speaking of Karen and affairs, she actually did have one with Jeff Jarrett while she and Kurt were separated, leading to Jarrett's ouster from the company's upper management by Dixie Carter. This was part of the reason Jarrett joined up with Immortal; to get revenge on Dixie Carter. Then Kurt turned heel in 2011 and joined Immortal, the same group Jeff and Karen were in, because, according to Hulk Hogan, Dixie Carter had known about the affair and…kept him…in the…dark? …Huh.
  • Insult of Endearment: The "You Suck!" chants when Angle's a babyface. This was highlighted during his Heel–Face Turn as part of his break with Team Angle in 2003, where he told Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas that he earned that chant.
    Kurt: You're tired of these people chanting "You Suck"? Let me tell you something, Charlie. You don't deserve to hear these people chant "You Suck"!
  • It Will Never Catch On: That time Hunter was talking with Pat Patterson said that people wouldn't buy Angle as a credible champ due to his size, to which Pat said, "Why don't you get in there and try to pin him for real?" Kurt was a measly 5'11 and 220 pounds of Olympic gold medalist with a neck the size of someone's thigh. Who could buy that guy as a world champion?
  • Jerkass: As a heel. Even in his designated "face" role, he blamed his ex wife Karen for getting injured during a brawl between himself and Jeff Jarrett, not even Jarrett for pushing Kurt into her.
  • Jerk Jock: While Angle presented himself as an All-American Face during his early WWE run, he came across as a condescending version of this. He became a lot more blatant later on by bragging about how he made people tap out, or how he broke other wrestlers' ankles. Fans will tolerate it so long as he is a jerk to people they dislike, or just like less. This seemed to seep into real life at some point during Tough Enough, with him breaking three of Chris Nawrocki's ribs and getting Daniel Puder into a shoot fight.
  • Kick the Dog:
    • One of the things that made Angle drop his All-American Face facade and go full Jerk Jock was when he wrestled Scotty 2 Hotty. Angle won the match by getting Scotty to tap out to the Ankle Lock, but Angle kept up the pressure until he broke Scotty's ankle. Needless to say, this amped up his heel credentials.
    • After Bitch Slap got injured against Americans Most Wanted and Ron Killings, new commissioner Jim Cornette announced there would be no more male vs female violence in TNA. So Angle, wanting to get Cornette's attention, put SoCal Val in an ankle lock and dragged her out the ring.
  • Large Ham: And an arrogant one, at that.
  • Leotard of Power: It's in the colors of America.
  • Let's Get Dangerous!: Under ordinary circumstances, Angle is already a skilled and dangerous wrestler that you shouldn't take lightly. And there are times, especially during his WWE run, that his character could be rather goofy and bumbling. However, once he removes both straps during the middle or climax of a match, his opponent had better be on full alert because it is on for Kurt Angle.
  • Lightning Bruiser: So Kurt doesn't do much of the rope jumping or flippy stuff, but he can. He's quick on his feet, and just watch how fast he can snatch in that ankle lock. He can also do the angle slam on guys twice his weight.
  • Love Triangle:
    • Between Triple H and his then-kayfabe wife, Stephanie McMahon, in 2000.
    • If not a triangle, the storyline between Kurt, Jeff Jarrett, and Karen Angle-Jarrett is similar.
    • Before that, Kurt and Karen had an on-screen triangle-like situation with A.J. Styles.
  • Made of Iron:
    • Kurt Angle the man and the character. For the uninitiated, he was in the summer Olympics with a broken neck. No, he didn't get it during the wrestling tournament, he had it before the tryouts. Not only did he convince them to let him compete, he won the gold medal. While he's injury prone at times, his neck at least is made of titanium.
      • Literally, at this point, according to the WWE documentary of his HOF induction.
    • This is an understandably large point of pride both for his character and in real life.
    • In-universe, this trope manifested in his ability to take multiple finishers and still kick out. He has taken three Stone Cold Stunners in a row, multiple choke-slams, multiple F-5s from Brock Lesnar, and so on.
    • He competed in the 2001 King of the Ring a whooping three times.
    • Endured a 60-minute ironman match against Lesnar on Smackdown, losing by only one point. Anyone who can step between those ropes against Lesnar for a full hour and still be standing is certainly this.
  • Manly Tears:
    • His gold medal celebration at the 1996 Olympics. On the September 18, 2000 episode of Raw, Triple H (who is later joined by Mick Foley) made fun of Angle's crying.
      Triple H: Now Kurt, forgive me if I'm wrong - that was very emotional for you, I understand that - but Kurt, maybe it's time, y'know? Maybe it's time for you to come to terms with your true feeling - maybe it's time for you to admit it to yourself, Kurt - maybe it's time to open the closet door, Kurt...
      • A little sadder as at the time, he was weeping for the joy of his new gold medal, and for the grief he could not share it with an old friend, Dave Schultz, who had been shot dead that year.
    • He would also cry again in 2001, on the Raw after Judgment Day (in which he regained his gold medals that were stolen by Benoit), when he would re-enact his Olympic gold medal ceremony.
    • After being relieved of his duties of General Manager of SmackDown by Mr. McMahon, Kurt Angle got on his knees and begged and cried for his job back.
  • Masked Luchador: "Shared" the role of "El Gran Luchador" with Eddie Guerrero and Paul London.
  • Medium Awareness: On the 2009 Victory Road, he flat out stated his and Mick Foley's match would not be pay per view quality. By which he meant he was simply going to beat Foley in the quickest most uneventful way possible.
  • Misplaced Retribution:
    • Kurt Angle tried to have Torrie Wilson fired after he was thrown off the ledge of a parking garage by Big Show, trying to save her. Yeah, the giant tried to murder him, it's understandable he'd be upset but that wasn't Torrie's fault.
    • So we get why you decided to embarrass the man who tried to murder you before and put you in a wheelchair for the better part of the year. What was your motive for doing the same to Eddie Guerrero, Kurt?
    • Chased after and choked out Sting's son in retaliation for Sting striking his wife, even though Karen was lying about it. Kurt refused to go back and watch the replay. Kurt wouldn't even listen when his wife decided to come clean...though she did try to blame it on him.
  • 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.
    The Rock: What in the blue hell was that?!
  • Older Hero vs. Younger Villain:
  • One-Man Army: In TNA against Aces And Eights and The Extraordinary Gentleman's Organization by himself and mostly successful in his efforts.
  • Out-of-Character Moment: Kurt's top rope 450° double knee drop to Sting during the 2007 Bound for Glory main event. Not only was it an odd spot for Angle, but it was an odd move to see when the two were in a blood feud at the time.
  • Overshadowed by Awesome: While much better liked than his predecessor, Kurt Angle was essentially in New Japan and the Inoki Genome Federation to serve as a transitional champion. NJPW stripped Brock Lesnar of the IWGP Heavyweight Title for his matches generally being of low quality despite his limited work schedule, refusing to drop the belt and being difficult to work with in several other ways despite not connecting with the fans. Antonio Inoki thought IWGP/NJPW had made a mistake in stripping Brock of the belt instead of having a match and so brought in TNA World Champion Kurt Angle, someone he knew Lesnar would agree to drop it to, gave Kurt a nice but short run where he successfully defended against Samoa Joe and defeated the recognized IWGP Heavyweight Champion Yuji Nagata (who was trying to take it back) and then lost the belt to Shinsuke Nakamura, who unified the titles, putting an end to the "third IWGP belt" saga.
  • Paint It Black: Has been wearing a black version of his gear since 2006 to signify his now Darker and Edgier character.
  • Pittsburgh: He's one of the only professional wrestlers to sport a homegrown yinzer accent. The only other prominent example has been Shane Douglas, and Kurt's accent is far thicker.
  • Politically Incorrect Villain: Quite common:
    • At the 2003 No Way Out pay-per-view (which was taking place in Montreal, Quebec), he insulted Canadians in general and Chris Benoit and Edge in particular, mocking their French heritage (although Edge is Anglo-Canadian, and has insulted French Canadians himself) in the Cheese-Eating Surrender Monkeys idiom. Extremely common at the time.
    • As the general manager of SmackDown, Kurt Angle sided with JBL in his attempts to win the WWE Championship, denying then fan favorite and fan voted John Cena a shot, after he bought into JBL's anti-Mexican rhetoric and well, then champion Eddie Guerrero was of Mexican descent.
    • Also in 2005, he threatened Booker T's wife, Sharmell Sullivan, by saying he wanted to have "bestiality sex" with her. Sharmell, like her husband, is black. Bestiality is having sex with animals. It's possible that he meant to say "bestial sex"; i.e. hugging like wild animals but honestly, "gutter slut" is politically incorrect enough considering SmackDown has always been rated PG, for some reason.
    • While feuding with John Cena in 2005, he made the point that he could say whatever he wanted and still get cheered, and proved it by remarking... it must be seen to be believed. In one string, he manages to insult the United States, black people, Jesus, and the fans themselves... and complimented France.
  • Popularity Power:
    • Whether he's a face or a heel, he'll always be cheered by the fans (see above).
    • It even carried over into his WWE entrance music. Fans of his WWE tenure know that his music starts with a mid-tempo series of horns, and then eventually bridges into a series of two-note intervals, which fans punctuate by chanting "You suck!" in sync with the two notes. The chants started when he was a heel and continued during his face turns as an odd show of respect. Angle once Lampshaded this in one of his promos.
    • During one of his face runs, he would point at his opponent during his entrance as the fans chanted "you suck" at THEM.
  • Power Stable:
    • The Alliance in WWE.
    • Angle's Alliance and the Main Event Mafia in TNA.
  • Power Trio: "Team Angle" with himself, Charlie Haas and Shelton Benjamin. Later, he would form a trio with Luther Reigns and Mark Jindrak.
  • Punished for Sympathy: Put Sherri Martel in the ankle lock for tearing up when called out by Shawn Michaels for joining Kurt Angle against him.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: When he was brought on as Impact's Director of Wrestling Operations, he claimed to have no more aspirations in wrestling, though Samoa Joe didn't trust him, believing that he only became Director to stay around while healing from his torn ACL and his predecessor MVP had gone corrupt. True to his word, when he did gain new wrestling aspirations after healing up, he resigned from the position rather than lord it over the roster as he had previously.
    • His 2017 run as General Manager of WWE Raw seems to be going like this.
  • The Rival:
  • Smug Snake:
    • Angle's first gimmick in WWE was a really, really arrogant heel that managed to put his foot in his mouth wherever he went. His first few months were undefeated which he bragged non-stop about in between oblivious swipes at the crowd. He went undefeated until he started losing tag matches wherein he would simply declare it was his partner that lost, not him. Then Tazz defeated him at the Royal Rumble. Kurt whined that it didn't count since Taz used a choke (it was the Tazmission). Then Taz beat him again. Kurt would then finally shut the hell up... until he won the Intercontinental and European belts.
    • During his feud with Shawn Michaels, Kurt Angle claimed that he could have done everything Shawn had done in his career if he had not been off in the Olympics. Fair enough, but then he set out to do everything Shawn had accomplished in his career in a period of four weeks.
  • Spotlight-Stealing Squad: Even after he lost most of his belts in TNA he still managed to appear in no less than eight segments during the 10/19/2007 "iMPACT", alongside his wife of course. Then came The Angle Alliance, which was the Christian Coalition until, well... then Main Event Mafia, which was Sting's group until, well... There's a reason why a derogatory nickname for TNA used to be Total Nonstop Angle.
  • Stalker with a Crush: In 2005, when he was obsessed with Booker T's Real Life-wife, Sharmell. There was some unexpected creepiness as Angle said he wanted to have "bestiality sex" with her. "Bestiality" is copulation with animals. Booker T and Sharmell are both black. He likely meant beastly (i.e. do it like animals instead of with) but never corrected himself.
  • The Starscream: Angle was this in both the WCW/ECW Alliance and in the Sting-led Main Event Mafia. Between those two, he was reduced to this role for one night in his own Alliance in TNA when Christian Cage forced them to make him the leader in order to join.
  • Suplex Finisher: Triple German suplex, though they rarely finish.
  • 10-Minute Retirement: His 2010 leave of absence from TNA lasted all of one month.
  • There Are No Police: Back when he was stalking Sharmell and basically trying to commit Attempted Rape with her multiple times, there was no police involvement whatsoever, even though assault with the intention to commit rape can carry some serious penalties, including varying years of imprisonment.
  • Three Month Rule: He joined the same conspiratorial alliance that the Jarretts were in after months of child custody disputes, death threats, life attempts and all other sorts of silliness, with years of backstory even behind all that. What's more, part of the motivation for joining this group was a mutual hatred for someone who he was manipulated into thinking had helped cover up Jeff and Karen's affair.
  • Throw the Book at Them: Kicked off a feud with Eric Young towards the end of 2007 by hitting him with a phone book.
  • Too Dumb to Live: During Taker's search to figure out who was stalking his then-wife Sara, he confronted Angle on the June 11, 2001 Raw. Angle said that he was sorry that "some maniac" was stalking Taker's wife, and added, "First of all, I met your wife once - I didn't even like her! I didn't even find her attractive!" Taker punched Angle and gave him the Last Ride.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Back in 2000, he tended to frequently drink milk, so much so that at one point he brought a milk truck out to ringside and sprayed milk all over a stable.
  • Tranquilizer Dart: He's on the short list of people who have used a gun on a professional wrestling show, although he "just" shot the Big Show with a tranquilizer dart. It makes a chair look a lot less effective but doesn't quite measure up to being chokeslammed off a ledge.
  • Traumatic Hair Cut: In 2012 he and Jeff Jarrett represented Joaquín Roldán's treacherous son Dorian, who alternates between Big Bad and Greater-Scope Villain of AAA at Triplemania XX but lost to Electroshock and LA Park, resulting in Dorian getting his head shaved. Dorian then broke the stipulation, having Angle and Jarrett restrain Park and Shock so Joaquín would be shaved too.
  • Ultimate Job Security: In TNA. WWE allegedly released him for refusing to go to rehab — Angle wouldn't check into rehab until seven years later, after five arrests, four of which were for a DUI. That was of his own volition, as TNA refused to take responsibility and get him help because he was arguably their biggest star. Had he been anyone or anywhere else, on any spot of the card, Angle either would've been forced into rehab or fired outright by at least his second arrest.
  • Uncool Undies: Kurt has been pantsed in the ring several times, revealing his skimpy thong, much to the crowd's delight. One pantsing incident added insult to injury as after he was pantsed, the ridiculous hair piece he was wearing was snatched off his head, revealing his baldness (long story). It's one of his character's Running Gags as he would be flustered and struggle to pull his pants up while wrestling.
  • Unrelated Father: Of Jason Jordan.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: It can easily be argued that Kurt's signing with TNA led to its downfall. Other than helping open a floodgate of old wrestlers to run roughshod over the company, Kurt introduced his then-wife, Karen, to TNA. Karen's relationship with Jeff Jarrett after her divorce from Kurt led to Jarrett being sent home by Dixie, allowing Dixie to gradually insert herself into a position of authority in the company (as most of the wrestlers saw Jarrett as the real boss). She then, of course, brought in Hogan and Bischoff, and it would all go downhill from there.
  • Verbal Tic: God bless him, he can't pronounce WWE properly to save his life. It usually comes out "Dub-Dublee"
  • Villains Never Lie: Oh sure, Kurt, why shouldn't you believe Hulk Hogan about Dixie Carter? He's only the Big Bad of the biggest Heel faction in TNA, has a vendetta against your opponent, screwed Dixie out of her company, and has been working with the Jarretts. I'm sure there's no reason he'd lie to you!
  • Villain Song: "Sexy Kurt", in mockery of Shawn Michaels' entrance music "Sexy Boy".
  • Vocal Evolution: Kurt's voice when he debuted in the WWF was kinda weedy and whiny, which was always lampshaded by his opponents. Now? He sounds deeper.
  • Wearing a Flag on Your Head: He wears the American flag as a wrestling singlet and sometimes as a mouth guard.
  • Worthy Opponent: Chris Benoit and Brock Lesnar. In TNA, AJ Styles and Bobby Lashley.
  • Would Put A Girl In the Ankle Lock: Even after WWE went PG and (among other things) abolished male-on-female violence, Angle was still willing to slap the Ankle Lock on Stephanie McMahon during their mixed tag match (with Ronda Rousey and Triple H) at Wrestlemania 34. To be fair, Steph had been provoking and taking cheap shots at him for the entire match, and Ronda had already opened up the intergender can of worms by beating up Trips. Either way, it got a massive pop.
  • Wrestling Family: His brother, Eric, had a stint as a professional wrestler that was brought to an end in the International Wrestling Cartel. Kurt almost had WWE Diva Nidia as a sister-in-law, since Nidia was engaged to Eric when he was in OVW, but they split up for whatever reason.
  • Wrestling Psychology: Fans go back and forth over how good he actually is at this. He's technically brilliant, but his more formula matches devolve into reversal-fests.




Pulse REALLY loves Kurt Angle's Olympic Slam.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (3 votes)

Example of:

Main / CallingYourAttacks

Media sources: