Ranking Every Single Wrestler Action Bronson Has Ever Mentioned
Take a critical examination of Bronsolino’s love of rapping and wrestling. Also, these dudes look hilarious.
Every Action Bronson verse is devoted to one of three things: food, the fairer sex, and professional wrestling. And most of them concern all three. As a result random historical sports figures, great food, prostitutes and oft-forgotten professional wrestlers get the same lyrical importance in Bronsolino's hyper-referential goulash.
Not all references are created equal, though. Since the professional wrestling references across Bronson's now-semi-sprawling discography—thanks to the release of this week's Saaab Stories—are probably the least understood among the growing number of chin-stroking Bronson Stans, we've made it easy to see the Nastys from the Janettys. This scientifically divined list takes into account reference frequency and hilarity, wrestler greatness, and whether or not the wrestler was just a boring guy in a cop uniform.
23. THE BROOKLYN BRAWLER
Action Bronson Quote: "Guaranteed you gonna lose just like the Brooklyn Brawler," on "Nordic Wind" from 2012's Blue Chips
Weight: 248 lb.
Finishing Move: "Sidewalk Smash"
Fun Fact: The Brooklyn Brawler was known in the business as "enhancement talent"—a lower echelon guy meant to make new talent look good—which meant if he was on a televised match, he was sure to lose. Even to guys named, no shit, "Red Rooster."
22. & 21. THE NASTY BOYS
Action Bronson Quote: "Take your bitch and tag team her, Nasty Boys," on "Brown Bag Wrap" from 2012's Rare Chandeliers
Height: 12'4" (if they stood on each other's shoulders)
Weight: 546 lb. combined
Finishing Move: "Trip to Nastyville," which has somehow not become a mixtape title.
Fun Fact: The Nasty Boys—Brian Knobs and Jerry Sags—were as nasty as they wanted to be in real life; their Wikipedia page has a section chronicling all the times they fought people for real. Their "finishing move" might have been the "Trip to Nastyville," but the most devastating move in their arsenal was rubbing their armpits in the faces of their opponents. Rumor has it Knobs did not wear deodorant.
20. BAM BAM BIGELOW
Action Bronson Quote: "Uh. This is Bam Bam Bigelow," on "Cocoa Butter" from 2011's Well-Done with Statik Selektah
Weight: 400 lb.
Finishing Move: "Greetings from Asbury Park"
Fun Fact: Bam Bam Bigelow's most important contribution to wrestling history is serving as proof to millions of kids that replacing your hair with flame tattoos was cool on paper but didn't look cool in practice. He also stole scenes in the Damon Wayans classic Major Payne.
19. & 18. THE MOUNTIE & THE BIG BOSSMAN
Action Bronson Quote: "I been fly since the Big Bossman feud with the Mountie," on "Amuse Bouche" from 2011's The Program EP
Height: 6'1"/ 6'6"
Weight: 240 lb. / 314 lb.
Finishing Move: "Carotid Control Technique" / "Boss Man Slam"
Fun Fact: These two guys had an epic battle in the early '90s, battling each other for the sole right to be the boring cop character on WWE television. The Mountie lost, mostly because he policed a nightmare hellscape called "Canada" where hockey is treated like a real sport and people are given free health care by their government.
17. GREG "THE HAMMER" VALENTINE
Action Bronson Quote: "I'm Greg "The Hammer" Valentine" on "Big Bad & Dangerous," from Smoke DZA's 2011 EP, SweetBabyKushedGod
Weight: 243 lb.
Finishing Move: "Figure Four Leglock"
Fun Fact: The name "Dream Team" was stolen from The Hammer's '80s tag team with Brutus Beefcake. Unfortunately, Michael Jordan never put a Venezuelan basketball player in a Figure Four.
16. "MR. WONDERFUL" PAUL ORNDORFF
Action Bronson Quote: "Mister Wonderful in short sets," on "Nordic Wind" & "Suede loincloth never fall off, Mr. Wonderful Paul Orndorff" on "Tan Leather" from 2012's Blue Chips
Weight: 253 lb.
Finishing Move: "Spike Piledriver"
Fun Fact: In 2013, he is probably the second most famous "Mr. Wonderful," behind the one currently on the hit ABC series, Shark Tank. Easy way to tell them apart: One wrestled Mr. T, the other sells software or something.
15. BRITISH BULLDOG
Action Bronson Quote: "Slim like that British Bulldog, you see me tannin'," on "Steffi Graf" from Niko Is' 2012 mixtape, Chill Cosby
Weight: 260 lb
Finishing Move: Running powerslam
Fun Fact: Davey Boy Smith's main strength was being British at a time when that seemed "different" in the WWE. He also had Bo Derek's haircut for a while. He wasn't particularly slim, though.
14. RICKY "THE DRAGON" STEAMBOAT
Action Bronson Quote: "Peace to Queens though, heavy on the C-note, Ricky Steamboat, one love Bronsolino," on "Amuse Bouche" from 2011's The Program EP
Finishing Move: "Diving Cross Body"
Fun Fact: "The Dragon" part of Steamboat's name was tied—in the, as always, racially sympathetic WWE—to Steamboat's vague Asian heritage and vague resemblance to Bruce Lee. The odds that him (or his son Richie Steamboat, who is in WWE's D-league) resurrect the name in a WWE-encouraged Game of Thrones, "Father of Dragons" angle seem about even.
13. BOOKER T
Action Bronson Quote: "I'm known for cooking meat, cooking beats, and wildin' like I'm Booker T," on "T.K.O." from 2011's Bon Appetit…. Bitch!!!!!
Finishing Move: "Scissors Kick"
Fun Fact: He once appeared on an episode of Charmed as a wrestler working for a supernatural wrestling promotion run by Ron Perlman. It is insane as it sounds.
12. BOBBY "THE BRAIN" HEENAN
Action Bronson Quote: "Cause nowadays it's just Brain, just call me Bobby Heenan," on "Ray Lewis," from Meyhem Lauren's 2010 mixtape, Clarified Butter
Weight: 190 lb.
Finishing Move: Telling Wrestlers They Sucked
Fun Fact: Brain wasn't actually a wrestler, but he managed nearly every great wrestler, before moving on to be a color commentary man at WCW. Most recently, despite battling throat cancer, he's been subtweeting the Ultimate Warrior in WWE documentaries.
11. THE IRON SHEIK
Action Bronson Quote: "I'm Middle Eastern, Iron Sheik with the Cobra Clutch" on "Central Booking" from 2011's Well-Done with Statik Selektah
Weight: 258 lb.
Finishing Move: "Camel Clutch"
Fun Fact: Currently an obnoxious Twitter personality who is retweeted regularly by all the obnoxious people you follow on Twitter, Iron Sheik was actually a "real" wrestler at one point, coaching the U.S. wrestling team to medals in the 1972 Olympics. This is surprising, since he spent most of his WWE career as the ultimate anti-American boogeyman.
10. OWEN HART
Action Bronson Quote: "To the top till I fall just like Owen," on "Thug Love Story 2012," from 2012's Blue Chips.
Weight: 227 lb.
Finishing Move: "Sharpshooter"
Fun Fact: This reference is more cringe-worthy than 70 percent of Bronson's sex raps—Owen Hart died falling to his death on a WWE pay-per-view—so the less said about this one the better.
9. RON SIMMONS
Action Bronson Quote: "Ron Simmons, Ron Simmons, Ron Simmons, Ron, Ron Simmons, Ron Simmons," on "Ron Simmons" from 2012's Blue Chips.
Finishing Move: "Dominator"
Fun Fact: Simmons was the first African American World Heavyweight Champion, winning the strap in WCW. He ended his career appearing on WWE programming saying "damn" at every opportunity, which the audience loved. Sometimes it's good to get a reminder that WWE programming is really supposed to be watched by 12-year-olds who giggle at someone saying, "damn."
8. E. HONDA
Action Bronson Quote: "I'll E. Honda, thousand slap you with the whole hand" on "Imported Goods" from 2011's Bon Appetit…. Bitch!!!!!
Height: 3'7" (he never stood straight up, so data is skewed)
Weight: 520 lb (estimate)
Finishing Move: Slapping
Fun Fact: E-Honda is not a wrestler, but as a Street Fighter II character, he is at least as "real" as the Undertaker. Plus, if you didn't call E. Honda "Yokozuna" when you played Street Fighter II as a kid, your childhood was marred by calling videogame characters by their real names.
7. JIM "THE ANVIL" NEIDHART
Action Bronson Quote: "It be that Queens kid with the face of Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart," on "Decisions Over Veal Orloff" from The Alchemist's 2012 album, Russian Roulette and "Red beard so I resemble Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart," on "Eggs on the Third Floor" from 2012's Blue Chips.
Weight: 281 lb.
Finishing Move: "Anvil Flattener"
Fun Fact: Neidhart is famous for being the wrestler that asshole friend of yours always took on WCW/nWo Revenge on N64, who that friend could always somehow ride via Neidhart's lunging headbutt, to a totally bullshit Battle Royale victory. Neidhart is also the father of current WWE Diva Natalya.
6. BARRY HOROWITZ
Action Bronson Quote: "It's Barry Horowitz rap, I pat myself on the back" on "Barry Horowitz" from 2011's Dr. Lecter.
Weight: 221 lb.
Finishing Move: "Horowitz Cradle"
Fun Fact: Barry Horowitz hardly won in the WWE, but he possessed inarguably the funniest taunt in wrestling history: He couldn't get cheers from the audience, so he patted himself on the back. Bronson mentioning him on Dr. Lecter is the biggest thing to happen to his career; Bronson has effectively altered wrestling history to make Horowitz a wrestler worth remembering.
5. "STONE COLD" STEVE AUSTIN
Action Bronson Quote: "Prayer scripted on the black Steve Austin shit," on a remix to Peter Bjorn and John's "Nothing to Worry About"
Weight: 252 lb.
Finishing Move: "Stone Cold Stunner"
Fun Fact: Stone Cold once drove a Zamboni up to the edge of the ring, completing the funniest inefficient travel Mad Libs of all time. Also, a kid in my middle school protested Stone Cold's "Austin 3:16" as blasphemy, which was insane because none of us knew what "blasphemy" meant, and also because wrestling is fake.
4. MARTY JANETTY
Action Bronson Quote: "Dropkicks like Janetty off the ropes" on "Intercontinental Champion" from 2012's Blue Chips, "Well now you know that I'm a rocker like Marty Jannetty," on "Amuse Bouche" from 2011's The Program EP, and "Know I hit you with the dropkick, Marty Jannetty" on "The Rockers" from 2013's Saaab Stories.
Weight: 226 lb.
Finishing Move: "Rocker Dropper"
Fun Fact: One half of the legendary tag team the Rockers with Shawn Michaels, Marty Jannetty is one of the bigger What-Ifs? of WWE history. He was as hot as Michaels when the Rockers broke up, but Jannetty's partying and legal troubles—he was put under house arrest at one point—led him to being released and rehired throughout the early '90s before he flamed out. Would he have been as big as Michaels as a solo performer? Bronson probably thinks so.
3. WILLIAM REGAL
Action Bronson Quote: "They say Bronson got an ego, acting like he Regal" on "Friendly Fire" off 2011's Bon Appetit, Bitch
Weight: 243 lb.
Finishing Move: "Knee Trembler"
Fun Fact: While it's possible Bronson meant royalty, we refuse to believe he passed up an opportunity to mention William Regal, a guy who has been, lowkey, maybe the best guy in the entire WWE over the last 10 years. He's a perfect mixture of slimeball, badass, and flawless wrestler. He's currently the best commentator in wrestling (he mans the desk during NXT). Also, he was once arrested in Alaska for peeing on a stewardess while he was drunk.
Action Bronson Quote: "Fuck with shorties that's in shape, they got the V like they're Vader" on "Larry Csonka" from 2011's Dr. Lecter
Weight: 450 lb.
Finishing Move: Vader Bomb
Fun Fact: This is maybe top three for funniest Bronson references ever, any category, because it equates the shape of a woman's pelvic bone with the taunt of a portly wrestler known by kids who grew up in the '90s for being the bully's dad on Boy Meets World. Bronson is maybe the first person on earth to think about Vader when he's trying to get laid, and this includes women who have sought sexual congress with Vader himself.
1. "MACHO MAN" RANDY SAVAGE
Action Bronson Quote: "Savage out of Sarasota, Macho Man" on "Nordic Wind" from 2012's Blue Chips
Weight: 237 lb.
Finishing Move: "Flying Elbow Drop"
Fun Fact: If only half of the rumors about Savage—that he and Ricky Steamboat entirely choreographed their classic match at Wrestlemania III in Steamboat's living room, that his blood was replaced with Slim Jims in 1995, that he deflowered Stephanie "Daughter of WWE Chairman Vince" McMahon, that some of his "madness" was real, that he agreed to let a real cobra bite him on air only after getting extra money, that the Village People wrote a song about him ("Y.M.C.A."), that his beard was actually a series of tiny Macho Man tattoos, that he played professional baseball, etc.—are true, he'd still be the best wrestler of all time.
Andrew Winistorfer probably thinks about wrestling too much. He's on Twitter — @thestorfer