#9 – King Booker
All hail King Bookah! Compared to everything else on this list, this gimmick was not long for this world. But it’s impermanence doesn’t change the fact that it made a world of difference for the five-time WCW Champion.
Booker T is unique in that he was already a major name by the time he got this shift in character. But while he was always on the cusp of greatness in WWE, they never got behind him all the way. You could argue forever as to why but the safest bet is the simple stink of WCW that couldn’t be shaken from him. He was with World Championship Wrestling for eight years after all and it’s where he made his name.
For Vince McMahon, that tends to be a bit of a problem. He doesn’t always like promoting people who were famous elsewhere, especially when that ‘elsewhere’ is Atlanta. But see, while Booker T might’ve been a major player in WCW, King Booker is a WWE invention!
That seemed to make all the difference. Booker T couldn’t become world champion in WWE in five years, but once he donned the cape and crown, it took all of two months for King Booker to become World Heavyweight Champion. And while he dropped the moniker upon leaving WWE a year later, it’s well remembered to this day.
A lot of people, and we do mean a LOT of people, have taken the King of the Ring thing quite literally. But few will ever do it with the success of one King Bookah.