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Wrestling / Shane McMahon

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Here comes the money...

"There could be no better man to be commissioner of SmackDown, than the man who has no fear."


Shane Brandon McMahon (born January 15, 1970) is the eldest of Vince McMahon's children and, like his sister Stephanie, has been heavily involved with Professional Wrestling ever since young adulthood. He has spent over twenty years with WWE, working his way up from ring crew to referee to commentator to wrestler to GM-figure.

He is one of the only fourth-generation wrestlers, and was the former head of Global Media for WWE before leaving in early 2010 to become the CEO of an Asian internet company as well as part of the Board of Directors of a sports management firm. In 2016 he returned to the company and the spotlight, initially being put in charge of WWE Raw together with Stephanie, before Vince decided to split the brands, leaving Stephanie in charge of Raw and putting Shane in command of WWE SmackDown until late 2019, when he lost his Career vs. Career ladder match against Kevin Owens.


  • Action Dad: He has three children. His sons appeared at WrestleMania 32, accompanying him to the ring in his match against The Undertaker.
  • Action Survivor: Despite wrestling in a few matches, Shane doesn't consider himself a wrestler and while he's best known for jumping off high places, his best actual skill is probably getting out of holds.
  • Arch-Enemy: Over the years his main feuds include X-Pac, The Rock, "Stone Cold" Steve Austin, Triple H, Kurt Angle, Randy Orton, Kane, The Undertaker, Shawn Michaels, AJ Styles, Kevin Owens, Sami Zayn and even his sister, father, The Miz and Roman Reigns.
  • Badass Family: Well, he is a McMahon.
  • Badass Normal: The son of the boss who can hold his own in the ring against trained wrestlers, and sometimes even win? Yeah, he qualifies.
  • Benevolent Boss: The word from inside the industry is that Shane is easily the best member of the McMahon family to work for. He's also played this role on-screen since his return in 2016.
  • Berserk Button:
    • The one guaranteed way to piss Shane off is attack his mother. He attacked Triple H when he tried to Pedigree Linda, despite them both being on the side of the McMahon-Helmsley Regime; turned on Vince after his abuse had left Linda catatonic; and was out for Kane's blood when he tombstoned Linda.
    • As a face, he's generally portrayed as protective of his family—though not unwilling to confront them on their BS.
    • Don't talk about his children. Kevin Owens made the mistake of doing it - after being warned - and Shane beat the crap out of him.
    • Another button for Shane when he first started appearing on TV was anyone dating Stephanie. Shane's first major feud was with Test over his dating her.
  • Big Brother Instinct: He's usually protective of his baby sister, once saving her from Randy Orton's Punt Kick by taking it with his back.
  • Brother–Sister Team: With Stephanie as owner of WCW during the Alliance storyline.
  • The Bus Came Back: After a long hiatus, he finally returned to the WWE and called out his father and sister on the February 22, 2016 edition of Raw, challenging them for the control of Raw. Vince would grant him control, but as always, there was a catch — he had to beat The Undertaker at WrestleMania. Inside Hell in a Cell. With Taker's career on the line.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: To Vince if they're not on the same side.
  • The Cameo: Has a blink-and-you'll-miss-it part in the 2002 film Rollerball. He's the CEO Paul Heyman's character says hello to when coming into the arena for the first time.
    • Has made a lot of these at recent PGA championships; his company is a major supporter of certain PGA golfers.
  • Chewing the Scenery: He was considered for giving the Hong Kong Dub to Taka Michinoku's famous Kaientai promos, but it ultimately went to Brother Love and Tom Pritchard.
  • The Comically Serious: Tended to play the straight man to Vince's Laughably Evil boss whenever the two were interacting. Has come back into play since his 2016 return - witness his interactions with Corporate Kane, Dean Ambrose and The Fashion Police.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: When he's a heel.
  • Curb-Stomp Cushion: Shane is renowned for being one of few non-wrestler superstars who against fearsome professionals can, at best, put up a solid fight, or worst, at least get in a good few hits.
  • Cue the Flying Pigs: February 22, 2016, the night he came back to Raw, which not a single person saw coming.
  • Dance Battler: One of his signature taunts - which he freely admits he stole from Muhammad Ali - is dancing and weaving from side to side, swinging his arms, and then punching whoever he's fighting in the face. The dance, which he does during his entrance as well, "The Shane-O Shuffle".
  • Deadpan Snarker: Shane doesn't even need to talk to get this aspect across. His utterly deadpan reaction to Vince calling out God was to give Vince a "WTF" look and take a single, but significant, step back.
  • Death from Above: Shane probably could've been a great cruiserweight in another life (in reality, he's a fairly big guy that likely wouldn't make weight) From elbow drops off the top rope onto the announcer's table, to coast-to-coast missile dropkicks to an elbow drop off the top of the Titantron.
    • Taken to its absolute with his performance at WrestleMania 32: Jumping from top of the Hell in a Cell cage - 20 feet! He missed his mark though, but goes to show how ballsy he can get. This is four feet higher than the one that almost killed Mick Foley (when Foley was 33 in 1998), and Shane was 13 years older in 2016note  when he did it.
  • Death or Glory Attack: An alarming amount of Shane's offense. He's lost as many matches (if not more) as he's won with his propensity for base jumping from the tallest structure available in the arena. Predictably, if someone can and does dodge, Shane goes splat.
  • Did You Just Flip Off Cthulhu?: His feud with The Undertaker, in which he called him Vince's bitch.
    • And during their match at WrestleMania 32, Shane routinely did a Bring It taunt, most notably two times after jumping off the cell and crashing onto the announcers' table.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?:
    • Where a young Shane got the nickname "the Giantkiller" from: splashing the Big Show from the top of the Titantron.
    • He talks about an incident with the Undertaker on "Stone Cold" Steve Austin's podcast. Shane is well known for "working stiff" (really hitting or slamming people, a more old-school style of wrestling), and during his match with Taker at WrestleMania 32, he got in a really good one, stunning the Deadman. Taker's response was to shake his head, murmur "fuckin' kid", and hit Shane so hard he swears he heard birdies (like in a Road Runner cartoon).
  • The Dragon: To his father when both are heels.
    • Dragon Ascendant: Pulled it off on his father twice, first, in The Corporate Ministry, and second during the InVasion storyline.
      • It was actually subverted with that first example, as it was later revealed that Shane was actually still The Dragon to Vince the whole time, as Vince was the Higher Power that masterminded the whole plot to kidnap Stephanie just to show "Stone Cold" Steve Austin how far he was willing to go to screw with him.
    • This was actually an aspect of Shane's character in the early days, as he was built up to be the "heir" to Vince's throne in the future in kayfabe and in real life. It wound up being apparently subverted though as Vince is still running WWE and Shane has resigned from his position, though only time will tell whether this is truly the case.
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: Harming Linda is his biggest Berserk Button. Case in point - one time when Stephanie and Linda exchanged slaps, and then Triple H tried to put the Pedigree on Linda, Shane immediately attacked Triple H, though they were both on the same side against her.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Despite being a Corporation member at the time, he tried to end the infamous I Quit match between the Rock and Mankind after Foley was thrown off a balcony through electrical equipment, and was visibly alarmed when Rock insisted on continuing the match and making Foley say "I Quit" the hard way.
  • Evil Feels Good: His reason why he attacked The Miz at Fastlane 2019.
  • Face–Heel Turn: On March 10 at Fastlane 2019, Shane and Miz failed to regain the titles from The Usos. After the match, Shane turned on The Miz by viciously assaulting him, while also taunting his father, thus turning heel in the process for the first time since 2007.
  • Family Business: Wrestling, until he left to pursue outside ventures, at least.
  • Finishing Move: Both of his involve jumping from high places: The Coast to Coast, a missile dropkick from the top turnbuckle in one corner to an opponent in a neighboring corner (generally done by kicking a trash can in front of them), and the Leap of Faith, a diving elbow from any high place.
  • Forgot Flanders Could Do That: While people have been impressed by the amount of actual wrestling training Shane has put in since his 2016 return, especially a number of nasty submission holds, they tend to forget that even back when he was "the guy who jumps off high things" he did display the odd burst of technical wrestling ability, such as slapping a painful-looking sharpshooter on Kurt Angle during their King of the Ring 2001 street fight.
  • Garbage Wrestler/Spot Monkey: He pretty much did crazy spots and big bumps and not much more...
    • ...up to a certain point. By the time he came back in 2016, he was willingly showing his age (46). Then he was shown training to prepare himself to go up against the nearly-unbeatable: a WrestleMania Hell in a Cell match against The Undertaker. By the time the match ended, he showed himself to be legitimate, reversing Hell's Gate into a sharpshooter, and then the Tombstone Piledriver into a chokehold.
  • Genius Bruiser: A much better GM than his sister and a significantly better wrestler, he's also responsible for much of the development in the 2000's of the WWE's online presence, which has been noted to be cutting-edge and innovative. was doing streaming video and forums right well before many other websites.
  • Good Counterpart: Behind the scenes, Vince is still booking the show. Except now he's appealing to the hardcore fans—while pretending that Shane is behind it all. It's a brilliant move: they decided to take a risk in 2016 and change the direction of the show, so if for some reason this doesn't work, on TV at least they can blame it on Shane.
  • Graceful Loser: On the Raw episode after The Alliance's loss at Survivor Series 2001, Shane accepts his defeat in front of Vince and admits his father is the better man before calmly leaving the ring. Stephanie, on the other hand....
  • Groin Attack: One of his more infamous WWE moments involved a rather unfortunate encounter with Kane, a car battery, and a set of jumper cables.
  • Guy Posse: The Mean Street Posse. They'd wanted Shane to have an entourage for his feud with Test and were going to use some indy wrestlers. Shane convinced the bookers that his actual high-school best friends could be more annoying than anyone they cast. He was right.
  • He's Back!: Shane returned to the WWE after a nearly seven year absence. The massive pop from the crowd is easily the biggest one in years.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: As a Face, Shane does his best not to become like his father, but his feud with Kevin Owens in the second half of 2017 almost forced him to play that card and fire both Owens and Zayn unfairly for all the problems they caused. Daniel Bryan had to calm him down for months before finally agreeing with him that those two had indeed crossed the line and should be fired.
  • High-School Sweethearts / First Girl Wins / Victorious Childhood Friend: Married the first girl he'd ever dated, Marissa. They actually used to live across the street from each other.
  • How Much More Can He Take?: Pretty standard in Shane matches. His Street Fight with Kurt Angle in 2001 was a double How Much More Can He Take?, considering the spots with the glass.
    • To elaborate, "the spots with the glass" refers to Kurt attempting to Belly to Belly-suplex Shane through the panes of glass used for the set. Apparently, they hadn't gotten the right type of glassnote  and the glass refused to break. Shane took a hellacious Belly to belly suplex and landed on his head. He told Kurt to suplex him again, and the glass broke. Then when they tried to do the same spot back out onto the ramp, the glass didn't break again. Kurt reportedly tried to stop the match, but Shane (who was close friends with Kurt in real life) told him they'd never get the chance to do this again. Kurt eventually hurled Shane through headfirst, and that shot of Shane going through the glass the final time has become iconic, used for years as the very first shot of the Smack Down video package.
    • To elaborate further: When Shane was bouncing off the Plexiglass, he was landing neck-and-noggin first on the concrete floor.
    • Then came his Hell in A Cell match against The Undertaker at WrestleMania 32 where he tried to do his elbow drop through the announcers table onto Taker, willingly doing it from the top of the 20ft cell. But as Shane jumped, Taker managed to roll out of the way, causing Shane to crash onto the table, literally silencing the 100,000+ in attendance who were just cheering for him as he made the jump, enough to make them sincerely worry he might have gone too far and killed himself as the refs and medics went to check him out. Even THE UNDERTAKER was in shock at this till Shane finally showed signs of life and even gave him two "Bring it on" hand gestures, even knowing he was clearly out of it.
  • Hypocrite: He reprimanded SmackDown general Daniel Bryan for "speaking his piece" toward The Miz and then advising him to apologize to the latter. Daniel Bryan agreed, not before calling out Shane on this trope.
    Daniel Bryan: By the way, I find this advice a little ironic, coming from the guy who had beef with Brock Lesnar.
  • I Am Not Left-Handed: Right-handed, but throws left-handed punches. Opponents get a nice surprise when they attempt to grab his left hand, and Shane goes and uses his actual dominant hand.
  • Improvised Weapon: Uses a trash can for his Coast-to-Coast Van Terminator.
  • Insistent Terminology: Ever since turning heel at Fastlane 2019, Shane ordered the ring announcers to announce him as "The Best in the World", which apparently gets longer and longer every week.
  • It Runs in the Family: You might not know this, but there were other McMahons in wrestling. Some of them were even related to this one.
  • It's All About Me: His other reason for attacking The Miz at Fastlane 2019.
  • Keet: Especially in his younger days. There were many, many jokes made about Shane needing to switch to decaf.
    • A little Harsher in Hindsight with his revelation on Stone Cold's podcast that he was diagnosed with ADD as a teenager and took medication for it.
  • Knight Templar Big Brother: At various points in time in regards to Stephanie. It depended on the era if Shane would take the unlucky sod who hurt his baby sister and beat him to a bloody pulp, or if he'd watch from the sidelines and leave her there.
  • Like Father, Like Son: In his early Corporation days, he was a carbon-copy of Vince. Also in real life, considering he shares his father's and sister's propensity for taking vicious physical risks when they don't need to.
  • Long Bus Trip: Resigned from WWE to "pursue other interests" (becoming the CEO of an Asian internet corporation, a short foray into producing with UFC), his absence hasn't been explained on television.
  • Manly Tears: He wipes away a few during his return in 2016, due to the overwhelmingly warm response from the crowd.
  • Momma's Boy: Generally, as a face.
  • Money Song: Here comes the money!
  • My Sister Is Off-Limits: One of Shane's first major angles on TV came when Stephanie (whose on-screen personality was The Ingenue) began dating Test. Shane did not take kindly to Test dating his sister, and they had a nasty feud over it.
  • No, Mr. Bond, I Expect You to Dine: Before his final confrontation with Kane at Survivor Series 2003, he invited Kane to a fancy restaurant so that they could issue their final threats over dinner.
  • Non-Idle Rich: In keeping with family tradition-and Shane's arguably taken it even further than Vince or Stephanie with his Death or Glory Attack jumps.
  • Older Than They Look: Always tended to look about 5-10 years below his actual age, and still would today if he hadn't let his hair fully gray out.
  • Only Sane Man: As a face, usually toward Vince. Taken to hilarious, Screw This, I'm Outta Here extremes during the "McMahon Family Portrait", where Shane simply bailed rather than witness any more of what was going on.
    • It started at the end of the InVasion storyline, where he calmly conceded victory to Vince, instead of throwing a temper tantrum like Stephanie.
    • Particularly pronounced during Vince's religion-based Sanity Slippage against Shawn Michaels, where he started fancying himself as a counterpart to the Almighty Himself, they had a segment in church where Shane was privy to his father's insane ramblings. Vince had Shane read a modified version of the Lord's Prayer, complete with excerpts about Vince's "omnipotent semen"; Shane stopped mid-reading because it was getting... weird. Later, Vince got on the podium and challenged God to strike him down where he stood. Shane slowly stepped away from him, not wanting to get caught in case of actual lightning. Then the next week, Vince started a promo by stating that Shane had asked him if he was going to hell. He would end up introducing McMahonism to the world.
    • It says something about the McMahons when the guy who willingly jumped off the top of the titantron, got thrown through two sheets of plexiglass, and did an elbow drop from at least 20 feet in the air, is the sane one.
  • Parent-Child Team: Teamed with his dad Vince McMahon often, during their feud with D-Generation X and as a part of The Corporation.
  • Power Stable: The Corporation, and the Corporate Ministry.
  • Put on a Bus: Left the company in 2010, and didn't return until 2016.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: The most reasonable of the McMahon family, in or out of character.
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: When he's a heel.
  • Screw the Rules, I Make Them!: When he's a heel.
  • Sharp-Dressed Man: When he's not wrestling. Shane can wear the hell out of a suit.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: Both in and out of the ring, Shane is the more level-headed businessman to Stephanie's spotlight-loving Yandere.
  • Smug Snake: Can get this way as a heel.
  • Spanish Announcers' Table: His elbow-drop from the top turnbuckle onto a prone Test on the table has become synonymous with the Spanish Announcers' Table bump, and one of the most infamous examples.
  • Spotlight-Stealing Squad:
    • While he's still generally well-liked, some critics have pointed out that since his 2016 return Shane has been pushed as a legit skilled wrestler far more than is really plausible to the point of overshadowing some of the full-time performers. Standing toe-to-toe with The Undertaker, giving AJ Styles a run for his money, and dominating Kevin Owens are three examples, but he came in for particular criticism for the booking of his WrestleMania 34 match against Owens and Sami Zayn where his tag partner Daniel Bryan (for whom it was his long-awaited first match in over 2 years) got taken out by an ambush at the start, forcing Shane to hold his ground against Owens and Zayn 2-on-1 until Bryan could recover and come down to even the odds.
    • It's become even worse since Shane won the "Best in the World" trophy at Crown Jewel and officially turned heel after Fastlane 2019. His boring, long-winded, self-aggrandizing promos eat up 20-30 minutes of air time at least once a week (and sometimes twice) and he's been featured in matches on every show/PPV during a time when WWE has more talent than they can use and wrestlers like Aleister Black, The Usos, Finn Bálor, and Shinsuke Nakamura (not to mention the entire women's division) can't even get a TV match once a month.
  • Spot Monkey: Shane is famous for this in his matches, doing all kinds of outlandish things that only the most extreme wrestlers would do (including jumping off the very top of the Titantron). His role with the company during all his biggest moments was as the Executive Vice-President of Global Media, which means he didn't have to go even half as far as he did just for the sake of the product.
  • Stuffed into a Trashcan: In a fit of Genre Blindness, thought he had finished off Kane after kicking him into a dumpster that was lit on fire.
  • The Starscream:
    • His Wham Line kick-start to the InVasion storyline, revealing he'd bought WCW right out from under his father.
    • Subverted during the Higher Power storyline, when it seemed at first that Shane had turned against Vince to join forces with The Undertaker, only for it to be revealed that Vince was the Greater Power giving them orders and it was all part of his plan.
  • Took a Level in Badass: While Shane was already a badass, since his return in 2016 he began to work as more of a wrestler, rather than just a Spot Monkey and Garbage Wrestler. In particular, his matches against The Undertaker at WrestleMania 32 and AJ Styles at WrestleMania 33 demonstrated a whole new range of technical ability, including some impressive submissions and reversals.
  • Token Good Teammate: For his family, both in and out of character. Backstage consensus is that, unsurprisingly, he's considered by far the best McMahon to work for, and certainly the sanest.
  • Uncanny Family Resemblance: In recent years, he's bore a striking resemblance to his great-grandfather Roderick McMahon.
  • Villainous Underdog: Like most McMahons, Shane is a performer and businessman rather than a proper wrestler. However he stands out among the others just for the sheer valour and legitimate skill he shows in the ring against the actual roster, often even when he's a heel. Sometimes fans are actually left rooting for Shane just for all the extreme measures he takes just to get some upper hand.
  • Vocal Evolution: His voice has deepened noticeably since his 2016 return.
  • Warrior Prince: Being the son of WWE's owner, he can be considered as such.
  • "Well Done, Son" Guy: What Shane was rumored to be for several years, at least up until he departed from the company. A lot of wrestlers talk about how they somewhat resented Shane for his ridiculous spots because it raised the bar to impossible heights. At the same time, they pitied him because Shane, as the boss's son, was just trying to get the respect of his father. Considering how much of a workaholic Vince is and reports of how favored Stephanie is with their father, that's hardly surprising.
  • White Sheep: To the McMahon clan both in kayfabe and out of it, he's just as dedicated to the business as his father, sister and brother-in-law, but lacks Vince's bullheadedness, Stephanie's arrogance, and Trips' self-serving behavior. Despite being widely considered the best to work for out of any of his family, he's widely seen as getting frequently pushed aside by his dad in favor of Steph and Trips.
  • Wooden Katanas Are Even Better: His signature weapon are Singapore canes, which he freely admits he embraced due to Mick Foley's use of it.
  • Worthy Opponent:
  • Wrestling Family: Randy Orton's Legacy tried to get on his good side on the basis they were all from wrestling families. Shane was having none of it, and reminded them that they might be third-generation Superstars, but he's fourth-generation.