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Melina Nava Perez (born March 9, 1979) is a Latin-American beauty queen from Los Angeles, California who won Miss Hawaiian Tropics Anaheim, Ms. California Belleza Latina and a couple group USA shows before turning to Professional Wrestling and eventually becoming a WWE Diva. She first became interested in a wrestling career by talking to EWF superstar Mike Henderson, which lead to her training in Jessie Hernandez's School Of Hard Knocks in 2001 and Kyra making her official debut not too long after. Kyra tried out for the third season of WWE Tough Enough in 2003, where she was one of the last cut. She continued to wrestle in Empire Wrestling Federation, Ultimate Pro Wrestling, Arizonan Impact Zone Wrestling and Mexican WWA as Kyra and as Melanie Little Deer in CRUSH (by the man who gave you GLOW) until she successfully signed with WWE in 2004. Melina initially was the manager of MNM in developmental OVW, though occasionally wrestled, sometimes as Kyra again when allowed back on independent shows, before the team moved up to the main WWE roster and Melina broke out on her own to join the Women's division. After a Heel–Face Turn in 2008 she became surprisingly over. She was eventually released by WWE in 2011 but continued to pursue work in independent promotions such as WSU as well as in those outside of the continental USA, even reappearing on national TV via Lucha Underground. She is a three-time WWE Women's Champion and 2-time WWE Divas' Champion.

"A-List Tropes:"

  • Aborted Arc: She started feuding with Maryse over the Divas' title when the latter returned from injury. However she suffered a torn ACL and had to vacate the title, leaving her out of action for eight months.
  • The Ace
    • The Kyra gimmick, at least in EWF and UPW. At the age of three her family and their friend had her wrestle tiger cubs for their amusement and eventually put together a traveling show with Kyra's tiger wrestling as the main attraction as they all got older, taking challenges from zoos and nature preserves and was later hired by the CIA at 19, which saw her take down 198 drug dealers and had become an undefeated underground fighting legend known for taking on five opponents at a time by age 23 when she joined Empire Wrestling Federation. This all made her one of the more arrogant wrestlers on the roster.
    • According to Bret Hart, Melina was the best worker in the company during her time in the WWE. Not diva, worker. Jim Ross also praised Melina's work ethic during her appearance on his Ross Report podcast.
    • Her recent career resurgence shows that even though she's 38 years old and was both out of shape and out of practice before her official return to the ring, she can still easily keep up with wrestlers who are much younger than her.
  • Action Heroine: Kyra was a very over the top version.
  • Alpha Bitch: Played the role so well that many were convinced that she had to be like that in real life.
  • Arch-Enemy: According to an interview with Glory it was "Anyone who steps with me inside of that ring." That said, Candice Michelle, Beth Phoenix and Michelle McCool are sometimes counted as this for her WWE run.
  • Bash Brothers: With Frankie Kazarian, John Morrison and Joey Mercury. Eventually with Mickie James too. Hurricane Shane Helms in Lucha Libre USA.
  • Battle Cry: So often that hers was named "The Primal Scream"
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Was apparently given a bloody lip during one televised match that of course wasn't seen (the blood that is, the match still aired).
  • Boisterous Weakling: For a multi-time women's champion and a star of the division for years, Melina's win/loss record is not great, and she tends to lose matches very quickly.
  • Bound and Gagged: She had Mercury and Nitro abduct Trish Stratus and this is how they presented her to Melina.
  • Braids of Action: Kyra was known for wrestling with one long braided ponytail. Melanie Little Deer had braided pig tails, but they signaled her being Amerindian more than a person of action.
  • Break the Haughty: She had calmed down a bit by this time, but having to submit to Beth Phoenix during their I Quit match definitely humbled Melina for a time.
  • The Bully: MNM tried to bully OVW's locker room after their big Smackdown debut. The only one who took them seriously though was Maria Kanellis, who was a booker/interviewer.
  • The Cameo:
    • While injured in 2010, she made one in a backstage segment at WrestleMania 26.
    • She appeared at WCPW True Legacy on 12 November 2016 as a special guest referee for the street fight between Kimber Lee and Nixon Newell.
  • Canon Name: Was only ever known as "Melina" in her WWE career, though was referred to by her last name Perez a few times.
  • Catfight: With Jillian Hall at the make-up table. Averted when Beth attacked her backstage. It was brutal and incredibly violent, void of any Fanservice.
  • Comedic Spanking:
    • Got one from Velvet Sky at WWC 08/05/12. Melina returned the favor before pinning her with the sunset split. Melina gave Velvet another at the Aniversario show to discipline Sky shaking her ass all over the second rope.
    • How she was punished by Alberto El Patron for her interference in his match against Johnny Mundo.
  • Contortionist: Melina is a back bender to the extreme who can easily shrug off most submission holds and she can also split over 180 degrees. While the shows these result in might be fun to watch though, they aren't always fun for Melina, such as when Beth Phoenix forced Melina to repeatedly kick herself in the back of her head.
  • Defeat by Modesty: Double subverted. She beat Torrie Wilson in a Bra & Panties match (by stripping Torrie's clothes off). However she decided to attack the special guest referee, Candice Michelle, and got double teamed by her and Torrie-they ensured Melina got stripped to her bra and panties anyway, which sent Melina fleeing backstage.
  • Demoted to Extra: At the start of 2011 after supposedly pissing off management by acknowledging her feud with Natalya was only a storyline. Put it this way, at the start of the year she was the #1 contender for the Divas' title. Her final appearance with the company eight months later was being the first girl eliminated from a battle royal.
  • Designated Girl Fight: Whenever MNM was feuding with another tag team, they'd usually recruit another Diva to help deal with Melina. Ashley Massaro, Jillian Hall and Christy Hemme are examples.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Her backstage encounter with Batista did not get the results Melina wanted. So she started a slander campaign claiming he harassed her, hired Mark Henry to take him out and then sued Batista while he was injured.
  • The Dog Bites Back: Despite Beth brutally attacking her backstage, Melina refused to back down and attacked her right back the very next week.
  • Dude, She's Like in a Coma: Suffered this after being defeated by Scarlett Bordeaux - after knocking Melina out with her finisher and pinning her, Scarlett planted a kiss on Melina as a final statement before celebrating her victory.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Before officially debuting with MNM, she appeared a few months earlier on Raw. First as a participant in Randy Orton's lingerie fashion show and the next week in a limbo contest. She was also featured in a backstage segment with eventual Arch-Enemy Candice Michelle.
  • Easily-Distracted Referee: Melina will knock your block off if she catches you cheating in a match she refs, ask The Platinum Hunnies. If she catches you, ask The Platinum Hunnies.
  • Evil Wears Black: Switched to donning an all-black leather outfit during her second run as a heel in WWE in 2011. Has also competed in a similar outfit as a villainess in matches against Velvet Sky at Northeast Wrestling in 2012. She donned an all black outfit while appearing as a villainous enforcer at MCW Ladies Night in 2015.
  • Expository Hairstyle Change:
    • Her transition from wrestler to valet saw her stop braiding her hair. From valet to active competitor in the women's division was marked by her hair going from brown with blonde highlights to black with the occasional highlights.
    • Her second wind of a career on the European indies was marked with a bob haircut and blonde highlights, though they vanished at the end of the 2010s.
  • The Fashionista: An ex government agent, who makes sure to look stylish. A reservation tribeswoman, who makes sure to be fashionable. A celebrity hanger on who makes sure to be glamorous, the clothing love is always consistent. Pre and post WWE she was basically a fashion model, in WWE she's more so a glamour model.
  • Faux Action Girl: Most of her post-WWE exploits on the indies consist of Melina being treated as a near legendary wrestler based on reputation, but her win/loss record says otherwise.
  • Femme Fatalons: As a heel. Jillian once encouraged her to rake Torrie with them but normally Melina would strike with her forearms or hands clasped to avoid breaking her nails. Less so after she trained with Nitro and Mercury for her first title shot which, among other things, included throwing more punches.
  • Finishing Move: "The Last Call" - a leg-trap sunset flip powerbomb (more commonly known as the Code Red of Amazing Red). Also the "Sunset Split" - an inverted DDT combined with a split-leg drop. Also the Kyranium Buster (block buster) and Kyrapractor (muta lock) but mostly from her days as Kyra, obviously.
  • Fur and Loathing: Wore fur down to the ring for her match at WrestleMania 23. Was actually included on's list of top Mania attires and was the only Diva to make the list.
  • Fragile Speedster: Is generally a bit faster than most of her opponents, but on the flip side, isn't able to take much punishment before it's too much for her to take. This trope is most on display when Melina faces off with Beth Phoenix, who generally ragdolls, crushes, and dominates matches against Melina, with a few exceptions.
  • Genre Savvy: Only two other Divas have actually attacked Melina while she was doing the splits on the apron - Mickie James and Michelle McCool. Michelle tried this a second time and Melina turned it around on her - grabbing the second rope and pulling herself up when Michelle went to kick her.
  • Gimmick Matches: Competed in the first Divas' Falls Count Anywhere and I Quit matches. Also Bra & Panties matches, a pudding match, a pillow fight and naturally many Lumberjill matches. She has also served as a special guest enforcer and a special guest referee at least once.
  • Girly Bruiser: Competed formerly in many beauty pageants, was known for loving feathers and ruffles, always looked fabulous...and also known for living for the fight and kicking the ass of anyone who messed with her girly things. She won five titles in WWE and competed in Falls Count Anywhere matches and an I Quit match.
  • Halloween Cosplay: As Spider-Woman in 2010. Some house shows featured her fighting Maryse dressed as Cat Woman or Alicia Fox dressed as Bo peep.
  • Heel–Face Revolving Door: Luckily, she is great at both roles.
  • Hijacked by Ganon: When Victoria was in one of her psycho phases she made a checklist for the divas on the roster she wanted to take out. Melina agreed to follow Victoria's orders in exchange for being kept off of the list.
  • Homage: She once did one to Ricky Steamboat that was unusual. He was in the front row and she walked to the ring and Johnny lifted up the back of her skirt to show that she had "STEAM BOAT" written across her butt.
  • Humiliation Conga: The 2006 Judgement Day PPV was not a good night for Melina. MNM lost their match and broke up. Melina then lost her match to Jillian, despite her hand being on the rope. And when she slapped Teddy Long for not reversing the decision, she was promptly kicked off Smackdown.
  • Hypocrite: Criticised the Divas who had posed in Playboy for flaunting their bodies. Yet had no problem dropping numerous Panty Shots when she was in MNM and also "sleeping" with Batista to try and stop him from facing Mercury and Nitro. It's likely this was intentional as she was the Heel and in fact was put to the test by Ashley Massaro, who told Melina Hugh Hefner had been trying to contact her and watched her and Jillian Hall get all excited before they realized she was lying, which caused Melina to say she would not have agreed to anything anyway to a nodding Jillian.
  • I Am Not Pretty: In an interview with Lilian Garcia, she said she grew up experiencing lots of racism for being a dark-haired Latina and rarely seeing women who looked like her on television - and thus she didn't believe herself to be pretty.
  • Important Haircut: She has cut her trademark long hair in 2014 and now sports a bob cut.
  • Improbable Age: Every career path Kyra was in prior to professional wrestling was an example, and she'd let anyone who would listen know it.
  • Insult Backfire: Melina takes diva to mean she's distinguished and stands out. If you meant "prima donna" she knows what she's worth, won't settle for less and you'd agree she had every right to act that way if you knew what she went through.
  • Kayfabe: Started out preserving it even online but later switched to just being herself after her "face turn". In her blogs, she attacked Candice Michelle before they had started feuding. It's still unknown whether it was a work or they were put into a feud because of that. Gail Kim was also very annoyed with her during their mini-feud on Superstars when Melina admitted it was only a storyline via Twitter, even after "turning heel" again.
  • Kick the Dog: After Jillian was fired as JBL's image consultant, Melina gave her a vapid apology and offered her a job doing her make-up. Jillian did not take it well.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: While Beth Phoenix was essentially an arrogant bully upset that she did not get her way, her forcing Melina to submit in an I quit match was karmic punishment for Melina's complete lack of gratitude toward Mick Foley giving up an I quit match with Ric Flair to stop Flair from beating Melina with a baseball bat. Later when Vince McMahon was going to fire Melina, Foley kissed his ass to save her job. When Vince asked Melina what she thought of that, she said Foley should be fired, which he was. Phoenix had something coming too but Melina really deserved what she got.
  • The Load: In sharp contrast to her role on the Californian scene, Kyra was known for getting beat up in WWA so her partner, Lola Gonzales, would look better when she entered the ring and basically won the match by herself. Of course, Gonzales was a legend while Kyra was a foreign rookie.
  • Lovely Angels: With Beth Phoenix first as a heel and later Gail Kim as a face.
  • Make An Exampleof Them: Beth Phoenix did this to her during a triple threat title match on RAW. Melina was knocked out earlier by another opponent, but instead of just pinning her, Beth ragdolled Melina and hit her with her finishing move for the win. It took a while for Melina to recover from being defeated so badly.
  • Mini Dress Of Power: Wore them constantly when managing, to the point that everyone only saw her as eye candy. Stopped wearing them in an effort to be taken more seriously.
  • Minor Injury Overreaction: One of her heel "quirks". Try not to pull the hair and don't break any of Melina's nails unless you prefer to wrestle an angry Determinator over a cowardly competitor more worried about protecting her manicures than winning.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Before, during, and after WWE, Melina's done many modeling shoots, including in lingerie or bikinis.
    • Her ring entrance originally involved her doing a split on the apron and giving the audience a look up her skirt.
    • At the start of her Heel–Face Turn, she did the splits for Jerry Lawler and Jim Ross on the announce table.
    • Diamonds in the Buff: In 2005, she did a photo shoot for WWE's website where she was on a couch nude and barely covered by MNM's WWE SmackDown Tag Team Title belts, while wearing a necklace and other jewelry.
    • Girl on Girl Is Hot: After defeating Lana Austin during the Southside Queen Of The Ring tournament, she kissed her. Obviously, the crowd really enjoyed this, and one of the commentators said, "This DVD's gonna be a good seller."
  • Naked People Are Funny: When she was "dating" Hornswoggle, he came up on Melina while she was in the shower, causing her to run away screaming, covered by a towel but Hornswoggle chased after her and pulled it away. Next week she was pinned by Mickie James after Horswoggle's distracted Melina before she could hit the sunset split. She chased him under the ring where she was heard screaming before Hornswoggle emerged with her top, then went back under to get her pants. Melina just stuck her head out, demanding her clothes back while Horswoggle ran away waving them around.
  • Noodle Incident: It was never acknowledged why Gail Kim was "always a horrible friend" to her.
  • Older Hero Versus Younger Villain: Happens a lot in her post-retirement career.
  • Older Than They Look: She turned forty in 2019. But when she did a reaction video on YouTube in 2021, looking back at her thirtieth birthday celebration on Raw, many comments noted that (as she had reverted to her natural dark colour and grew her hair long again) she looked exactly the same.
  • Paparazzi: A leftover from MNM but she eventually dropped them. Rosa Mendes infiltrated the group to sneak attack Melina. Beth Phoenix also stole one of their cameras once after participating in a group beatdown on Melina involving Rosa Mendes and Jillian. She had good reason to drop them.
  • Parts Unknown: Kyra was from "High Desert"...which could probably be narrowed down to somewhere around Oregon, Nevada or California.
  • Persona Non Grata: She and John Morrison got banned from the Skybar Nightclub in Los Angeles after they jumped in a pool to celebrate her birthday.
  • Pretender Diss: Served as a Straw Man for critics of the WWE, especially WWE Divas, calling those that got out of cutting their teeth on the independent circuit and learning new styles in foreign promotions, ect inferior(Mickie and Jillian she also dissed but gave them credit as wrestlers) She also dissed Beth Phoenix for thinking of herself as glamorous, but by then she had turned face and thus it was more Trash Talk than being set up as a straw man to ultimately be proven wrong.
  • Punch Parry: Subverted, Melina and Layla tried to kick each other at the same time and unexpectedly knocked shins. They kicked twice more before Layla wound up for another which Melina just let whiff for an open shot. In a future match Layla slapped Melina in the face as soon as their kicks collided.
  • Put on a Bus: After her only appearance on Lucha Underground, after what were described as "difficulties" between herself and LU officials (reported by the Wrestling Observer) or that she was asked to do one show in place of the original person meant for the role (Taya, who would debut in Season 2 and was originally meant for the role of Kobra Moon) and plans were changed afterward (told by Melina herself), depending on which version of the story is heard/believed.
  • Real Life Writes the Plot: Melina and Johnny Mundo were a legit couple in real life, so it made sense for Lucha Underground to attempt to milk that for all it was worth in the ring.
    • In season 3 Johnny Mundo talked about having to use some money to make some pictures go away, almost certainly referencing pictures Melina put online about him, thus giving a kayfabe reason for her not being on the show.
  • Reimagining the Artifact: The red carpet and paparazzi as part of her entrance initially was there because MNM's gimmick was of arrogant heels who thought they were A-listers. When MNM split, she kept the red carpet and paparazzi because she was still a cocky primadonna. When she turned face, they still remained because she was now a gracious and humble 'celebrity'.
  • The Rival: Shelly Martinez, under her many ring names, was this to Kyra. Sadly there was no Melina vs. Ariel in WWE. Melissa Coates and Ebony Princess were also early rivals, if less frequent ones.
  • Screaming Warrior: Oh good God! Nothing made MNM more hated than Melina's happy screams when they were winning...or her angry screams when losing. Both her sunset split and last call are usually preceded by a long battle cry too. As MNM's valet, she actually broke up a pin against her boys by climbing in the ring and literally screaming in the referee's ear.
  • She-Fu: Moreso as a face - a lot of cartwheels, Matrix-dodges and splits in her matches.
  • Signature Move: Though she switched to a different one about every six months. In WWE she started with a series of mounted forearms or chokes and ended with a seated senton, with various axe handles, hair pull face busters, a high leg stomp and many illegal holds in between them. Her finishing sequence of divastator kicks were downgraded to a signature move too.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Essentially the raison d'etre of MNM, which fit their gimmick of name-dropping party-crashing Hollywood scenesters who claimed to know all kinds of famous people but didn't actually do anything. On top of that, not a month in and she was already claiming to be the most dominant diva in the WWE.
  • So Beautiful, It's a Curse: Suggested by the cover of the October 2007 issue of The Wrestler, which featured a picture of her and asked, "MELINA: Too Beautiful To Be Taken Seriously?"
  • Spicy Latina: Played with. As a heel she was angry, promiscuous and aggressive but otherwise presented as "Anglo". As a face she dropped the angry and promiscuous but kept the aggression.
  • Spy Catsuit: Switched her ring gear to this in 2011, though without any sleeves.
  • Squash Match: Defeated Jillian in one to become the Divas' Champion, giving Jillian the shortest reign on record, which was never broken before the title's 2016 retirement. Also retained the title in another against Alicia Fox.
  • Stripperiffic: Normally averted, except for her match at Survivor Series 2005.
  • Take That!: An obvious 'parting shot' at her came the week after her release. Beth Phoenix said in a promo "no more splits" which Melina took as a shot at her.
  • Tempting Fate: Melina slapped Alicia Fox for speaking on Michelle McCool's behalf. After beating Fox in a match, McCool assaulted Melina, announced vague intentions and spent the rest of the month trying to break Melina's jaw.
  • 10-Minute Retirement: Officially declaring herself retired on her "Getting Real With Melina" podcast in 2014. Then, after an eleven year absence, she returned to the EWF arena in late 2015, welcoming World Wonder Ring STARDOM to the USA. This lead to her locking up with Hudson Envy and "The Unstoppable" Thunder Rosa of Oedo~tai. She officially came out of retirement in 2016 when she competed in and won British promotion Southside Wrestling's Queen Of The Ring tournament, winning the entire tournament and becoming the new Queen of Southside.
  • Theme Naming: Many of her moves were named based on the fact that she's from sunny California. "Sunset Split", "California Dream".
  • Took a Level in Badass: The Melina character debuted as a prissy valet who only got into catfights or wrestled in Bra & Panties matches (with the occasional mixed tag with MNM). She only got a win over the Women's Champion Trish Stratus via surprise elimination in a battle royal. Her winning the title from Mickie James nearly two years later was even treated like an upset. But 2007 saw her being treated entirely as a wrestler, and 2008 saw her taking Beth Phoenix to her limit in an I Quit match (only quitting when Beth nearly broke her spine in two). By 2010, she was a three-time Women's Champion, two-time Divas' Champion and among the top women in the company.
  • The Unfought: For all their cat fights, she never had a proper match with Rosa Mendes, even though Rosa made her WWE debut attacking Melina. They did have an FCW match but it was not televised.
  • Use Your Head: In her early WWE days, Melina would use a headbutt to the temple or the face of her opponent as a signature move.
  • The Vamp: Except she was not very good at it. Her most high profile failure was sleeping with Batista to try and tire him out (if not convince him to bow out) but instead firing him up, leading to MNM even losing harder. Another was her offer to date Hornswoggle after he was revealed to be Vince McMahon's bastard son in hopes it would get her a shot at women's champion Candice but all she really got was public embarrassment from him and mocking from Jillian Hall.
  • Very Punchable Man: Through OVW to WWE, when Melina was in MNM she frequently interfered in matches. While some teams Wouldn't Hit a Girl and got their own manager/valet/bodyguard to handle Melina, a few of MNM's opponents basically just went "to hell with this" and hit her.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Melina and Jillian Hall started off as friends on Smackdown and no matter how many times they seemed to tease each other, fall out, fight and form other allegiances they always ended back up as friends.
  • Vocal Dissonance: Her voice is very soft and high-pitched for a grown woman. She seems to be aware of this, since on one of her podcasts, she mentions her voice being compared to a baby or a cartoon character.
  • Waif-Fu: Against Beth Phoenix. Eventually she was able to actually knock her out and pin her clean - something which rarely happened.
  • We Used to Be Friends
    • Melina did not think of much of Candice Michelle as a wrestler but was tolerable of her, so long as Candice stayed away from the ring. Melina was even a fan of Candice's Go Daddy commercials but once Candice decided to get serious about being a wrestler, any lasting trace of friendship between them got shredded.
    • Inverted. She and Mickie James started off as bitter rivals but Melina turned face and the two formed a friendship there. As many times as they fought, as brutal as the beatings they gave each other were, Mickie and Melina's rivalry never became personal compared to other feuds happening alongside their bouts, making them more like Fire-Forged Friends. Melina did attack Mickie unprovoked sometimes but only to get at Trish Status, stay in the good graces of Victoria and Beth Phoenix, or get the upper hand on Mickie in fighting for the title. The two made poor tag team partners but that had more to do with Melina not caring instead of anything between them. In the end it was Mickie saving Melina from Victoria that cemented their friendship.
  • The Worf Effect
    • An odd example, as she was knocked out and pinned by Winter to set up Lita at Family Wrestling Entertainment, even though Lita had long since retired from matches and thus didn't do much more than knock Winter around after she beat Melina. Lita even attacked Winter while Melina was still unconscious on the floor.
    • Was also hit with this big-time when she faced Lay Cool. She never got a true important win on Michelle McCool, even losing to her clean on multiple occasions in title matches, while Layla beating her in under 3 minutes on RAW ended Melina's relevance as a contender.
  • You Can Leave Your Hat On: Debuted in a striptease segment with Randy Orton on Raw.
  • You Go, Girl!: Her very first Women's title defence was in a Falls Count Anywhere match, the first time Divas had competed in such a match note . A year later she also competed in the first Divas' "I Quit" match. And a year after that was on the winning team of a rare Divas' Survivor Series match.
  • You Have Failed Me: She blamed Joey Mercury for MNM losing the Smackdown tag team titles (in real life, they were breaking up due just not wanting to work together anymore). Melina would get her own medicine on Raw when Beth Phoenix turned on her for failing to help her win the Women's title off Mickie James.


Video Example(s):


Hornswoggle and Melina

One WWE storyline had Hornswoggle dating Melina (who was doing it for the money), much to her distress as not only she found him a disgusting midget he also constantly acted like a depraved pervert around her, including peeping on her on the shower.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (10 votes)

Example of:

Main / DepravedDwarf

Media sources: