INDUCTION SPECIAL – The Worst WWF Magazine Covers of the 90s!

57 Submitted by on Thu, 14 April 2016, 20:00

wwfmags-slide

WWF, 1990s

The following confession is probably going to drown me in hate mail, but I was never, ever a fan of the WWF Magazine.  While the magazine was no doubt the best looking wrestling publication until WOW Magazine hit newsstands, it just did nothing for me.  RD Reynolds?  Always an Apter Mag guy.  Give me Pro Wrestling Illustrated, Inside Wrestling, The Wrestler.  I’d even take a few of the lesser mags, like Sports Review Wrestling or Wrestling USA.

Now with that said, it’s not like I didn’t pick up a few copies of Vince’s rag here and there.  I have some buried in my closet from years gone by, but thanks to the wonders of the inter webs, I was able to find a website that had every single cover of every single WWF Magazine ever.  It’s rightchere.

Some of these covers are ok, but a lot of them dredge up terrible memories for me personally.  And many of them are just plain awful all on their own.

Hey, wait a minute!

I run a website covering the very worst in pro wrestling!

Why don’t a do a write up of the absolute dregs of their archive, focusing on the decade of the 1990s?  Wouldn’t that be fun?

Eh, maybe not, but that’s what you’re getting this week!

victory1

A bit of history first.  The very first WWF publication was entitled World Wrestling Federation’s Victory. I thought this thing would go for at least five bills, but no – you can pick it up for under $100 on eBay if you play your cards right.  Its cover featured “Superfly” Jimmy Snuka doing a very impressive leap frog.  Also, it appears his groin area has vanished into thin air.

Unquestionably creepy…but hey, if that doesn’t say “Collector’s First Edition” I don’t know what would!

wwf1986-06-07

After a scant two issues, Victory was dropped, and it became WWF Magazine.  This of course is the magazine many of us remember from our youth, and I do as well, so long as we can all agree that “youth” would count as “16 years or older”.  Why on this cover here, we got fine art representations of men such as Hulk Hogan and Mr. T, as well as King Kong Bundy truly living up to his name by scaling the Empire State Building!

Maybe that $89 for the first issue with Snuka’s vanishing taint was beyond your grasp, but this one in which the Hulkster is sporting a tuft of wayward hair on top of his dome, which someone did using BRUSH STROKES (!!!), is a steal for $20.

Free shipping!

wwf1984-85-12-01

However, it pales in comparison to this little number, with Sgt. Slaughter celebrating Christmas in a camouflaged sleigh.  Legit if Mrs. Deal wouldn’t kill me, I would Photoshop my head on that and we’d have our family Christmas card for 2016.  To be fair, I can’t blame the girl for utilizing her veto power, as I know that I’d leave both “The Faces of Wendi” and “Cheesecake for You, Beefcake for Me” on there.

That would make for some bothersome conversations at the holiday get togethers.

Ok, time to get to the complete and utter insanity on display today – the worst of the 1990s WWF Magazine covers!

wwf1990-06

You may look at this one and think, “RD, come on – it’s Warrior after he won the belt from Hogan at WrestleMania VI.  That is an iconic moment.  You’re an idiot and have never been funny.  I have no idea why I am here reading this.  I must have no life whatsoever.”

Oh now don’t be so hard on yourself, and remember what I wrote above: “a lot of them dredge up terrible memories for me personally.”  You may read that and think I was a closet Hulkamaniac (no) or that I thought Warrior winning the belt was a stupid idea (also no).  Believe it or not, I was actually in favor of Hogan dropping the title to Warrior, just because I felt the company needed to freshen things up.  One thing they did not need to revise, though, was the classic intro for the flagship show at the time, WWF Superstars of Wrestling.  But they did and ho boy howdy was it…

Horrendous?

Horrifying?

Absurd?

You know, we need to make up a new word for it.  How about “supercalitragialistic”?

I mean seriously, what kind of drugs were the WWF TV crew on at the time?

mmrhigherres

Yeah, I don’t know either dude.

wwf1992-07

I mean, in comparison, this cover from 1992 in which he appears to be cross-eyed (!!!) seems perfectly sane.

And I’m not sure about you, but this old boy is going to rip this sucker open and head straight for “The Undertaker – Preparing Berserker’s Plot.”  Did those two feud and I somehow blocked it from my brain?

If so, can I learn to utilize this special ability for like 75% of the stuff on Raw these days?

wwf1992-05

Hey look, it’s Elizabeth!  Now you may be questioning why on earth I would say this is one of the worst covers of the 1990s and the answer is quite simple: that is one bizarre picture of Liz.  I mean, I don’t know what the deal is, if it’s the strange earrings or the hair that looks like she just jammed her big toe in a light socket (which would be extra painful, since she’d be upside down), but this image is anything but flattering.  Still, at least she doesn’t look completely horrified…

wwf1989-04

…which is definitely an upgrade from this 1989 cover.

Oh who am I kidding, the best Liz was WCW Liz:

liz

Always dressed in black, skin delightfully orange…good times all around.

Wait, where was I?

wwf1992-09

Oh yeah, horrible WWF Magazine covers!  Sorry, WCW Liz has a distracting nature on this old boy.  Also distracting – Papa Shango: Man, Myth, & Magic!  I don’t know what’s more baffling, honestly – that someone thought this would be a good wrestling character, or that someone thought that this would make a good wrestling magazine cover.  On the plus side, this would be before he cast a spell that made Warrior vomit all over the place on WWF television.

With some of these others, I am kinda surprised a wide-mouthed Warrior with pea soup spewing out never graced a cover.

wwf1993-01

Hey Nailz – pull my finger!

(Pretty sure the great Troy Lowe used that joke back in his Pro Wrestling Desecrated days…come back, Troy!  We miss you!)

wwf1993-02

You know who else we miss?  Mr. Perfect.

So why are we featuring him in this induction?

wwf1993-04

Because a mere two months later, this magazine had Yokozuna on the cover with the EXACT SAME POSE.  I mean, seriously, what kind of quality control is that?  Had to have been a rib on Curt, right?

wwf1994-05

Put on your goggles (even if they do nothing) – it’s Adam Bomb’s 10 Megatons of Terror!  Did you know there are people who thought this was a good gimmick?  They did!  I bet they even bought those little footballs that looked like bombs that the WWF sold at the time.  Anyone remember those?

bombsquadfootball

Yep.  They sure did make them.  Worse yet, they called his fans “The Bomb Squad”. No wonder the guy wound up doing a dope smoking gimmick as KroniK (which also was horrible…and led to this absolutely atrocious match).

Also of note is the fact this magazine features a Video Game Review with text so tiny that I legit thought you had to open up the magazine to find out what it was.  Upon closer inspection, it’s Eternal Champions.

ec2

I hope they mention Larcen’s finisher where he has an old Chicago gangster ride come by and mow his opponents down gangland style. That rocked.

Even if his opponent doing a weird dance prior to his demise didn’t.

wwf1994-10

You’d think a cover with Doink throwing a tantrum would be cause enough alone to appear here today, but read that text under his right arm pit: “Clown Sale? Is Doink Next on DiBiase’s Wish List?”

While your mind would rightly be boggled at the thought of a “clown sale” (umm, what?), even I must admit that Doink rolling around as The Million Dollar Clown may have prevented WCW from ever winning any weeks in the Monday Night Wars.

Also, this magazine features “Supper with the Shrinkers!”  Come and get it indeed!

wwf1996-09

There are a million jokes to be made here, but honestly, haven’t we all had enough Fun with Tammy?

No?

Then Blade and I better get back in the studio to record a new WrestleCrap Radio.  By my count, we have approximately 48 hours of material to try to catch up with all her recent lunacy.

wwf1996-12

Wait a minute – I know I’ve seen this image of Sid before.

In fact, I’ve seen it on this here website before!

sid

It was in a Halloween costume induction we put together eleven years ago (and yes, it’s in the archives, thanks for asking so I could plug it thusly)!  Seriously, that is the exact same image, and it is seriously creepy.  Would it look even creepier if I used some rudimentary morphery skillz?

sidmask

I say yes!

Also, I feel like I’ve just unleashed some type of inherent wrong upon this world with that image.  Sorry for the nightmares, kids!

wwf1997-03

SPEAKING OF NIGHTMARES, here’s a WWF Magazine immortalizing Ahmed Johnson’s way, WAY too tiny trunks via a cover.  I can’t help but note that a vast portion of this publication’s audience were kids.

They didn’t need to see this.  Would someone please think of the children?

And by children, I do mean any and all humans “16 years or older (or younger)”?

wwf1999-11And the decade ends with this.  Remember kids – to all you who bemoan the fact we are currently mired in the PG-era, things could be worse.

We could return to the days of Billy Gunn shaking his keister at us on a weekly basis.

How on earth did we all make it through the 90s?

And what horrible covers did we miss?

Discuss your favorite WWF Magazine memories below!

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Yeah, you know...the WrestleCrap guy. Been here since before day 1, I have. You can hang out with me on Facebook. (I'm on there quite a bit) or follow my exploits on Twitter (I'm on there not quite so often). Thanks, and Keep on Crappin'!
57 Responses to "INDUCTION SPECIAL – The Worst WWF Magazine Covers of the 90s!"
  1. Scrooge McSuck says:

    Some of those covers are just… wow. Who thought they were good ideas!?

  2. ChrisV says:

    Wow, I didn’t remember how much WWF Magazine loved day-glo colours back then!

    I used to own all of these issues. I started buying the magazine as a kid, right around WrestleMania IV, and kept buying it until after the “Attitude Era”.
    I eventually sold my collection.

    Remember the more “mature” RAW magazine they put out for awhile as the Attitude era started? I better there are some moments we’d be ashamed about looking back at some of those issues now too. heh

    Yes, Undertaker and Berzerker did feud. Like many potential Undertaker opponents back then, Berzerker disappeared before their first match.
    I remember Berzerker trying to stab Undertaker with his sword, but Undertaker sat up before it plunged in him.

    • Mister Forth says:

      Was this Undertaker/Berzerker feud tanked because the rumored deal where he guarded the door so Nailz would throttle McMahon, or am I just overthinking.

  3. Hulk6785 says:

    Nothing will ever top Assitude.

    • Caveman says:

      Yeah, I wish he’d have brought it back when the Outlaws returned before he was fired for roidin’ it up for some weight lifting contest.

  4. Scrooge Mcsuck says:

    There’s an issue from the Summer of 94 that basically buries Hulk Hogan, praising Yoko as the greatest champion ever (despite being written during a period when Yoko was kind of a nothing midcarder).

    • Andy says:

      I have the issue in a closet somewhere. It was after Yokozuna went over Hogan at the first King of the Ring, but before Bret got the belt back from Hogan at Wrestlemania X. Fun side not, the author of said article was some schmuck named Russo. I wonder what ever happened to him?

    • Nomangang says:

      I definitely remember that. Hogan had just debuted in WCW so they went into full burial mode (I seem to remember they even had a picture of him standing in front of a huge tombstone that said “Hulkamania: January 23, 1984 – June 13, 1993). The vast majority of the article was spent tearing Hogan to shreds: crapping all over his comeback at WrestleMania IX, mocking his loss at King of the Ring ’93, and then wrapping up by saying that he had just “popped up in another wrestling federation” full of “aging wrestlers in the twilight of their careers”. They even mentioned that he refused to put over Bret Hart. I just kept thinking, “Um…wasn’t this supposed to be about Yokozuna?”

      Speaking of WWF Magazine burials, I wonder if their short-lived “Now It’s Our Turn” feature will ever be inducted. It was around the time of the steroid trials. It was basically going to be an outlet to fire back at everyone that had made allegations against the WWF, but it only showed up in one issue before they scrapped it. The only one that made it into the magazine was a BRUTAL burial of Superstar Billy Graham.

      • Scrooge McSuck says:

        That article is just 2 full pages of mean and nastiness. I don’t think there’s any comedic value for an induction, just a reminder how sad and petty people can be. When Meltzer is mentioning it in his newsletter, you know the magazine hit the scummy path and thankfully it didn’t follow through with articles on everyone else who crossed McMahon from 1991-93.

    • KatieVictoriasSecret says:

      The byline for that one was literally “Yoko Rules!” My tiny mark heart was very confused back in the day.

  5. Scrooge Mcsuck says:

    September ’93. Rejected Playgirl cover.

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/WWF-Magazine-1993-September-Lex-Luger-Steiners-Rare-Wrestling-WWE-Case-/222086113747?hash=item33b55d29d3:g:z30AAMXQVERSxM9A

  6. Anthony "A-Log" LoGatto says:

    That cover with Adam Bomb was the first issue I ever got. I think I still have it.

    As for Adam Bomb being over at the time. Well… it was the 90’s? Plus, it was a lot better than The Nightstalker.

    • Vince B says:

      It helped that both of Adam Bomb’s theme songs were pretty sweet.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sqIrFY6MiEY

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1qU8rTml_Yk

      He also had sweet theme music as Wrath, even if it was a Van Halen knockoff.

    • Evan Waters says:

      I can’t tell if Adam Bomb was ever actually over, but it always seemed like the guy had potential.

  7. CP says:

    I can’t help but wonder if Paul Heyman could’ve done more with Bryan Clark as Adam Bomb than Vince did. He had a weird way of making strange gimmicks work.

  8. Autrach Sejanoz says:

    Ah, Eternal Champions. Pity The Final Chapter never got made.

  9. TheDude says:

    I totally owned some of these. And I loved Adam Bomb, and Kronik. Liked his original outfit as Wrath most though

  10. Peter Smith says:

    I love this website and the inductions are awesome but there is one TINY little error, the link to the covers should be http://hoffco-inc.com/wwe/mgs/indexwwf.html otherwise I LOVE the website

  11. ChrisV says:

    My favourite memory of buying the magazine, looking back, was getting PPV results. I forgot all about that draw. The magazine was about three months behind, so you’d have to wait all that time to finally find out full results from a PPV.
    Such a different time, before the internet. Now, you can get results online as the event happens.
    Just imagine having to wait three months to find out exactly what happened during the latest In Your House! heh

  12. The Doctor of Style says:

    Interesting to see that the magazine kept the old WWF logo thru the mid 90s, instead of changing to the tilted logo the company started using then.

  13. John C says:

    It looks like Morphing Sid is nodding in approval of Ahmed’s short shorts. Probably since Sid has half the something that Ahmed does.

  14. Dean says:

    I will never forget the look on the cashier’s face when I went to the store to pick up my copy of this gem:
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/WWF-Wrestling-Magazine-November-1998-Val-Venis-WWE-/281469896572?hash=item4188e9c77c:g:4psAAOxyod5SKLMU

    • King Of Kings says:

      Ha! That’s nothing. I remember when I first was looking through the RAW Magazine that featured Goldust and Marlena on the cover half naked looking all kinds of weird and strange. My mom saw what I was reading and thought I’d lost my mind thinking I was reading some bizzare fetish magazine till I had to show her it was all wrestling related. Still made me wonder what they were smoking to come up with THAT cover!

      Come to think of it RD, how did you ever miss inducting that one here?

  15. Ze Frenchie says:

    I find it weird that the Ultimate Warrior doesn’t have face paint on the first magazine… He got his ring attire for the photoshoot, but didn’t bother with what made him iconic… Strange.

  16. "The Big Cheese" Paul Kraft says:

    R.D how could you forget when The Berzerker tried to stab The Undertaker with his sword and ended up stabbing the mat instead?

    OrnagesicleLickableLiz.com! I bet Blade has that URL registered….

  17. Sean Bateman says:

    Deal, Liz and Trish = sitcom

  18. Big Daddy Strong says:

    a few things…….I thought Papa Shango was a good gimmick. seemed like a natural arch enemy for the Undertaker. both based in the supernatural. Adam Bomb COULD have been a great gimmick if the WWF had associated him more with the super popular X-Men that were hot during the early 90s. I mean their target demographic was obviously kids.

    I liked the magazine. as a kid, it was part of the holy trinity of wrestling…..tv shows, magazines and toys. it was also supplemental material for backstories or to foreshadow a possible upcoming rivalry. later on they would have their fantasy warfare and superstar of the month features. but there were some down sides as well.

    the Ahmed Johnson issues have a story about him being involved in gangs in Pearl River, MS and what should be an inspiring message gets overshadowed by pics of him in matching denim daisy dukes and a jacket worn like prison sissies. in fact, he looks like he’s posing for the State Pen Calendar. another time I had to have a conversation about the overly homoerotic nature of wrestling, my uncle was thumbing through a Best of the WWF ’99 3D issue when he came across uh, when he stumbled upon a picture of Mr. Ass pulling his hot shorts down. he just kind of went “aww say it ain’t so” and I had nothing. I just shrugged and walked away.

    • Jerm says:

      I remember one issue that had a story on Ahmed (might of been that one) that discussed his rough childhood, including one bit about his father throwing boiling water, his skin bubbling and peeling off, the sheets of the bed he was placed on sticking to the raw skin underneath, and then being placed in a bath and the dead skin falling off and floating around him.

      In a magazine for kids.

      • Big Booty Step Daddy says:

        may have been. I had virtually all of them between Jan 1996 up until 2000 (Both WWE and RAW) Then only got the occasional issue. I had to condense them down for storage reasons but that Ahmed one is burned into my brain. Between that and the chronic wedgie he kept where one ass cheek was completely exposed, it’s kind of haunting.

        the gist of his story was how he came from a rough life and being in gangs but those pictures screamed prison bitch.

  19. Claude Tanner says:

    I had some of those issues, even though I preferred the Apter mags. I gave up on WWE magazine after it became a “men’s lifestyle”-type magazine. Why on earth would anyone read a wrestling magazine for dating tips?

    • Big Booty Step Daddy says:

      yeah they did that around 2005 I think. They wanted to be like Maxim or something. I don’t think they even covered their own business just had a bunch of random things thrown in. Some things were ok but yeah, who wants dating tips from Santino or Miz’s recipe for green beans and ketchup? and that last one was real by the way. another was Edge’s Swedish Meatballs. swear to God.

      I guess it would have been one thing if it was done tongue in cheek but I think they were seriously putting themselves out there as an alternative to the other magazines.

  20. Shockwave says:

    Hey! Liz was always awesome 🙂

  21. "The Big Cheese" Paul Kraft says:

    I liked the ads for Columbia House the best!

  22. John Q Occupier says:

    Is it wrong that when I saw “Win Lunch With Your Favourite Wrestler” the thirteen-year-old part of my brain immediately thought “The Berzerker”? 🙂

  23. DaveP says:

    I still think VKM is missing the boat by not having Becky Lynch call upon the power of Adam Bomb’s hand-me-down goggles to fuel her wins within the women’s midcard.

    • Big Booty Step Daddy says:

      hell why stop there? after seeing Ambrose inherit Mick Foley’s bat and Funk’s chainsaw, maybe someone needs a gimmick where they raid the WWE Vaults and steal old “artifacts” (i.e. props) and pull them out when they need them?

      there’s got to be hundreds of things that could be used. Al Snow’s head, Rick Martel’s Arrogance atomizer, Hacksaw’s 2×4, Bob Orton’s cast, etc.

  24. Geoff says:

    I’m such a nerd I guess. I liked playing Vampire the Masquerade while I was in high school and college. Then when they had Gangrel as a wrestler, the magazine started publishing ads about White Wolf and Vampire the Masquerade in them. I was in heaven. My two favorite things combined.

    Also you missed a lot of magazines: one cover had the Rockers before they split. Another cover had Hacksaw Jim Duggan doing his signature HOOOO. And yet a third cover had Sgt. Slaughter and Col. Mustafa staring across the cover at Warrior and Hogan which was the dream team of the time. I also remember Jake Roberts with a black glove and his feud with Rick Martel who also got his own cover. Ah yes, good times. GOOOOD times!

  25. Doc 902714 says:

    Anyone remember the “Secret Superstar” Department that used to appear on page 2 of every WWF Magazine from 1995-97? And then you had to flip to the last page a “Scoop Sullivan” cartoon saga for the answer on the bottom of the page.

  26. The Angry Jobber says:

    That Doink cover was one of my favorites! I remember one of my friends putting those photo caption stickers (it was the early 90’s, well before anybody in the neighborhood had internet) to the left of Doinks face screaming “I want a REAL opponent”. Yeah none of us thought much of Jeff Jarrett back then either. And the Headshrinkers “Jim Dandy BBQ” recipe in that month’s issue was to die for! I think the cover of Lex Luger and Michael Jordan with the caption “Talk about a Dream Team” would top my list of worst 90’s WWF Magazine covers. A honorable (perhaps dishonorable) mention would go to the WWF Magazine with the Macho Man on the cover touting part 2 of an extended interview with him….right as he signed with WCW.

  27. Muthaaa says:

    Those first two Warrior cover pics, he looks like Glen Danzig.

  28. Sull Scoopivan says:

    Funny note about the Sunny “Once so true…I Slopped You” cover…

    I remember getting this issue and trying to look for the story about the slopping, but it was nowhere to be found. Beyond the cover image, there was no acknowledgement about the slopping absolutely anywhere in the magazine.

    The only time it would be mentioned in the pages of a WWE publication again would be in late 2002 in the lead up to the Raw 10th Anniversary special in their top 50/100 (whichever it was) “greatest Raw moments of all time” where they included Sunny being slopped…

    …except this didn’t happen on Raw. It was the last big moment on Superstars before it moved from a Saturday syndicated show to USA networks on Sundays that autumn.

  29. Jimbolian says:

    The only issue I can remember getting was the one with The Brood on the cover. Pretty good, but when it hit newsstands, Edge & Christian kicked the fat, puffy pirate shirt wearing to the curb and went on as a tag team.

  30. Jimbolian says:

    *fat, puffy pirate shirt wearing vampire

  31. Doc75 says:

    i think wwe.com did something similar to this. only their picks were a little worse.

  32. Brad H says:

    “WCW Liz was the best Liz”. After re-watching the first Halloween episode of Saturday Night’s Main Event on the network, I vehemently disagree

  33. theJawas says:

    You shut your whore mouth about Sports Review Wrestling, RD! That was the first wrestling magazine I ever got, and I subscribed to it for like five years.

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