WWE's 7 Worst Feuds and Storylines of 2013
WWE's comedy characters topped the company's worst feuds of 2013.
Bullfighters took on wannabe rockers; a ballroom dancer battled a goofy giant. Chris Jericho vs. Shawn Michaels, this was not.
At its best, WWE is a strange blend of Shakespearean drama, circus-like acrobatics and a bar fight. At its worst, its humor sputters and the action in the ring draws out yawns. The year's least appealing offerings showed fans numerous examples of WWE's most unfavorable qualities.
Part of the disinterest created with these stories can be blamed on the performers, just as blame must also belong to WWE's writers who gave these Superstars little to work with.
The most inferior rivalries of 2013 are ranked here based on the lack of quality matches, the tepidness of the chemistry between the wrestlers as well as the ineffectiveness of the story and the stakes involved.
Each of those categories is graded out of five. Ric Flair and Ricky Steamboat-level chemistry is a five while Fandango and The Great Khali's work together earns a one, for example.
The lowest total "wins."
Big Show vs. Randy Orton
- Matches: 2
- Story/Stakes: 3.25
- Chemistry: 3
Its prominent position earns this short feud more scrutiny. The stakes were high as the WWE Championship and essentially the position of the face of the company were on the line.
The issue, though, was the story's inept climax. After focusing on Big Show's animosity with The Authority for months, a distraction from Triple H and company at Survivor Series led to the big man losing.
That was it. The feud delivered no resolution, no real ending.
The single match between them was a disappointment, one that didn't feel worthy of the main event.
The Miz vs. The Wyatt Family
- Matches: 2
- Story/Stakes: 3
- Chemistry: 3.5
Bray Wyatt and The Miz teased at something compelling, but the narrative never found its stride.
Wyatt and his clan interrupted a Miz TV segment; the "Eater of Worlds" claimed that Miz was obsessed with fame. He sounded like a religious zealot calling out a heathen.
Other than a tag match pitting Erick Rowan and Luke Harper against Kofi Kingston and The Miz, there was little in the way of in-ring collisions. Without enough in-ring action, this ended up being a case of men puffing their chests out at each other and doing little about it.
The haunting image of "liar" written across Miz's chest and the spark between Wyatt and Miz keeps this off the list proper.
7. The Miz vs. Kofi Kingston
WWE's indecision about where The Miz is headed as a character not surprisingly led to an ineffective story. Miz turned on Kofi Kingston for seemingly no reason.
When those two clashed over that betrayal, Miz showed no signs of being a villain. His heel turn remained in neutral.
Kingston slapped Miz after the bout. They seemed to patch things up as Miz appeared to revert back to babyface status, but another tag match ended with animosity simmering between the partners. The fact that this is a sequel to a feud they had at the end of 2012 doesn't help to create excitement either.
Their solid matches and chemistry together keep them from landing a higher spot on the list.
6. Dolph Ziggler vs. Damien Sandow
Given a more involved narrative, Dolph Ziggler vs. Damien Sandow could have been a far better feud. As it stands, WWE seemed to just throw these two men in the ring with no plan as to where their story was going.
There was little in the way of the usual extracurricular activities between rivals. There were no backstage ambushes or dastardly deeds. Ziggler and Sandow only had their matches with which to work.
That lack of animosity made their gimmick matches like the Hamptons Hardcore match feel hollow. Only after they fought several times did WWE give them something worth fighting for when the No. 1 contender's spot for the Intercontinental Championship was on the line.
Each Superstar has also had far more chemistry with other rivals than they did with each other.
Poorly worked matches have several other feuds ranked above them in spite everything this one lacked.
5. Ryback vs. Mark Henry
WWE billed this as two monsters banging heads. The battle fizzled, ending up looking nothing like the wrestling equivalent of Godzilla vs. King Kong that fans were hoping for.
Before WrestleMania 29, both Mark Henry and Ryback showed off their impressive strength. They both attempted to break a bench press record before Henry choked Ryback with the weights. Their WrestleMania bout failed to build on that animosity.
It was a tepid match, but that one was far more entertaining than the rematch that ended with Ryback quitting.
The two powerhouses struggled to fit together. Their matches were clunky and uninspired. Had they received a little less hype pre-WrestleMania, they would surpass more of WWE's worst feuds of 2013.
4. Total Divas vs. True Divas
Take out AJ Lee's famously scathing promo out of this feud and there is little left to enjoy. This was too crowded to tell a quality story. It ended up too often being a display of cawing Divas.
The matches have been among the year's worst.
At Survivor Series, the Divas took all the fun out of the traditional elimination tag match. There was no drama, only the trading of pinfalls. The following night, they essentially repeated the same performance.
Even when AJ and Natalya, two of the division's best wrestlers, have gone at it, the matches have been underwhelming. Unfortunately, the most memorable moment coming of their clashes thus far has been a botched finish.
The overall story has suffered from a lack of defined roles. Are fans supposed to cheer for The Bellas who are catty and boastful? AJ is painted as the villain, but is also presented as the coolest, most genuine woman of the bunch.
3. The Real Americans vs. Los Matadores
Pairing these two teams made sense. One is a trio of xenophobes, looking to oust those they perceive as invading America. The other is a set of Latinos with mysterious origins.
The issue with the rivalry that ensued is that it took a few steps and simply stopped walking.
El Torito and Los Matadores had a few run-ins with Zeb Colter, Antonio Cesaro and Jack Swagger. Their tension led to a single match. At Hell in a Cell, the bullfighters bested Cesaro and Swagger.
It was one of the night's most forgettable bouts. The goofy nature of Los Matadores' gimmick didn't mesh well with The Real Americans' power and mat skill. It's not surprising then that WWE dropped the angle at this point.
Nothing more came of this and Los Matadores have all but faded away since then.
The rivalry's collection of moments and matches ends up being sparse enough to land it in the top 3 of 2013's worst feuds. Los Matadores beat themselves out for the next highest spot.
2. Los Matadores vs. 3MB
While The Real Americans and Los Matadores had a reason to lock horns, 3MB and Los Matadores went at it time and time again with little motivation for the wrestlers to battle or for the fans to watch.
As many times as Los Matadores defeated 3MB, the audience had to wonder if it was continually watching the same episode of Raw.
When rivals with great chemistry have match after match, there's no reason to complain. Who wouldn't want to see Brock Lesnar vs. Kurt Angle for five straight weeks? As for the series between Los Matadores vs. 3MB, there was no reason to invest.
Los Matadores were never in danger of losing and these teams had no narrative beyond the ropes. Each victory felt insignificant as so little was at stake. It's hard then to imagine a feud that could impress less.
That's where The Great Khali comes in.
1. The Great Khali vs. Fandango
Want to confuse WWE fans? Ask them what their favorite match of the Fandango vs. The Great Khali program was.
After Fandango debuted in grand fashion, defeating Chris Jericho at WrestleMania, the Fandangoing trend began to take off. A month later, WWE had Fandango working with the company's least talented wrestler in a rivalry that has been as appetizing as a ham sandwich sitting in dishwater.
Fandango has looked excellent in the ring when working with CM Punk, Rob Van Dam or Daniel Bryan. Against Khali, the action has been awkward and lacking in highlights.
A feud like this should have resulted in more funny moments to justify it being around. It also shouldn't have gone on as long as it has.
Throw in the fact that WWE kept Khali and Natalya a couple after her relationship with Tyson Kidd was made public on Total Divas, and you have a clear winner for worst feud of the year.