Mount Rushmores of Wrestling is a series that breaks down the cream of the crop of professional wrestling in our quest to come to a consensus on the top four of any given category. In today’s edition we’re looking at the most iconic tattoos in wrestling.
Jason: Let’s get this out of the way, as–objectively–Goldberg belongs on this list. True, the wrestling hipster in me wanted to put like Harley Race or Rick Rude on here, as they were among the first big name wrestlers to sport any ink, but if we’re talking iconic tattoos, we (sadly) have to talk about ‘90s tribal. While I don’t think I can blame Bill for the popularity of the style, there are probably thousands of marks in their 40s rocking Goldberg’s unique arm piece because of the bald bruiser. Is it as cool or stylish as some of the others on this list? I guess that depends on how old you are, but it’s hard to deny that this is one of the most prominent pieces in wrestling history.
Brock Lesnar’s sword
JJ: Brock Lesnar has got a lot of crap over the years for the sword tattoo on his chest, and yeah, how could you not make phallic jokes about this thing? Putting jokes about Lesnar compensating for something aside, when you actually find out why he got the tattoo, it may just change your opinion on it. In his autobiography Death Clutch: My Story of Determination, Domination, and Survival Lesnar explained the meaning behind his iconic chest piece.
I felt like life was holding a sword right up against my throat, so I went under the ink gun because I never wanted to forget exactly how I felt at that time. The tattoo on my chest has so much meaning to me. In some ways, it’s funny, because the period of my life that I’m talking about is a time I so want to forget, but I know I can use this memory as motivation.
That’s a lot more depth that you’d probably think The Beast Incarnate possessed, and whether you like or love to hate the tattoo, you have to give him credit for why he got it. And at the end of the day, we can all still agree that no tattoo in professional wrestling reminds us more of a penis than this one does.
CM Punk’s Pepsi Logo
Jason: If I’m honest, there are a lot of Punk’s tattoos that I like more than this in-joke soda logo. The “Luck is for Losers” piece on his forearm and his awesome chest panels in particular always caught my eye as a tattoo collector. That being said, he named his old finisher after the Pepsi logo adorning his left shoulder and it has the most lore behind it, so here we are. His own slant on a joke tattoo from Minor Threat’s Brian Baker, the Pepsi tattoo is one of the most easily distinguishable pieces on the man’s heavily tattooed torso. In fact, that’s a big part of what makes it the most punk tattoo on Phil’s body. To this day you’ll be hard pressed to find an action figure or video game of Charles Montgomery Punk that actually includes an intact depiction of this tattoo. Why? Copyright, baby. I mean a lot of this is also true of the Cobra and Arashikage tattoos on his right arm (Hi, Larry Hama! How you doing?), but I think more people are fans of sugar water than GI Joe, so Pepsi it is!
The Rock’s Brahma Bull
JJ: It’s only proper that we end with what is perhaps the most iconic tattoo in wrestling history, The Rock’s Brahma Bull arm tattoo. A lot of wrestlers get bad tattoos, some get good tattoos, and then there’s the select group who get tattoos that fit them so well that the ink becomes synonymous with their character. The Brahma Bull tattoo has since been covered up, as The Rock has moved on from wrestling and is now one of the highest paid actors in Hollywood, but in it’s heyday it was perhaps the tattoo that best encapsulated its owner. The Brahma Bull is The Rock’s nickname, for years it was an integral part of his merchandising, and to this day the symbol is still intrinsically tied to The Great One even though he’s long since moved on from the squared circle.
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