In professional wrestling, an angle is a fictional storyline which is practiced and rehearsed several times.
The scope and variety of angles vary widely. An angle may be as small as a single match or a vendetta that lasts for years. In addition, an angle may be a part of a feud, or a feud part of an angle. Angles may often lead from one to another. The term angle implies an insight into a wrestler's gimmick; however, the term dates back from when wrestling was a touring carnival sideshow, so this is unlikely.
During a wrestler's career, he may take part in very many angles, which are often inconsistent, implausible and reused from one wrestler to the next (see kayfabe).
It is not uncommon to see an angle become retconned due to it not getting over with the fans, or if one of the wrestlers currently involved in the angle is released from his contract.
Examples of angles
- The New World Order: a group of heels formerly based at the WWF, that sought to take over WCW.
- The Invasion: The time when Shane McMahon brought WCW and Stephanie McMahon brought ECW and a bunch of people from WCW and ECW were taking over the WWF and form a stable known as the WCW/ECW Alliance. Stone Cold Steve Austin later became the Alliance leader, where Kurt Angle was the WWF leader until he joined the Alliance and The Rock became the new WWF leader.
- TV actor Mario López tackling Val Venis after Venis supposedly hit on López's date to an event (this appears to be an example of a promotional gimmick. The announcers later mentioned López's recent acting ventures)
- The Undertaker meeting his long lost brother, Kane for the first time after being burned and engaging in a feud.
- Kane being forced to remove his mask and making his second to latest heel run by turning on Rob Van Dam as the result of a match (this is an example of an angle within a feud).
- Kane burying his half-brother, the biker gimmick of Undertaker alive and returning as the dead man.
- Kane going crazy after hearing the words, May 19 and briefly turning heel once more by turning on his former partner then baby face, Big Show and quickly going back as a face once more by engaging in a feud with a masked version of the fake Kane.
- Kane being accused by Triple H for the murder of Kane's late girlfriend, Katie Vick.
- Stone Cold Steve Austin becoming the WWF Champion, to the disgust of owner Vince McMahon.
- Cactus Jack getting amnesia after losing a match, and becoming a vagrant who thought he was a ship's captain.
- Booker T and Goldust forming an Odd Couple-style tag team and going on to win gold, discovering respect for themselves and each other in the process.
- Lita leaving her storyline husband Kane for Edge (an example of a In a one time only storyline being used to create a feud).
- Matt Hardy returning to RAW and starting a feud with Edge, due to real life love cheating with Hardy's real life girlfriend, Lita.
- Raven's cohort Stevie Richards bringing in Beulah McGillicutty in order to mess with Tommy Dreamer's head and gain an edge in their feud.
- Shawn Michaels engaging in a feud with Vince McMahon and later Shane McMahon due to the Montreal Screwjob and Triple H reuniting with Michaels as DX.
- Eddie Guerrero betraying one of his closest friends, Rey Mysterio and later telling Rey that his son Dominick, is the "biological" son to Eddie.
There has also been parody angles where someone would make fun of and dress up like another wrestler or non wrestler:
- Triple H as the Rock, Vince McMahon, Shawn Michaels, and a masked Kane.
- After Steve Austin got fired in WCW he joined ECW and dressed and acted like Hulk Hogan and Eric Bischoff.
- Shawn Michaels as Hulk Hogan and Shane McMahon.
- The Hurricane as Triple H.
- Chyna as the Big Boss Man.
- Billy Gunn as the God Father and Shane McMahon.
- X Pac as Mark Henry and Ken Shamrock.
- A midget as the Boogeyman
- A midget as Goldust
- Dink the Clown the midget parody to Doink the Clown.
- Road Dog Jessie James as D Lo Brown and Vince McMahon
- Jason Sensation as Owen Hart and Shawn Michaels
- The Mean Street Posse as Mick Foley, The Rock and Triple H.
- Will Saso as Stone Cold Steve Austin.
- Four midgets as the Hardy and Dudley Boyz.
- The Undertaker as a masked Kane.
- A midget as Booker T.
- A midget as the Undertaker.
- A midget as Kurt Angle.
- 5 midgets as The Spirit Squad.
- A 6'4' bodybuilder as Hornswoggle.
- Shelton Benjamin as Bradshaw.
- Charlie Haas as Faarooq.
- Jeff Jarrett as Doink the Clown.
- A fake Doink the Clown.
- Edge as Triple H.
- Edge as Ric Flair.
- Randy Orton as Shawn Michaels.
- Duane Gill as Gillberg ; a parody of Goldberg.
- Buff Bagwell as Ernest "The Cat" Miller.
- One of Bagwell's then partners as Kazuo Onoo.
- After WrestleMania 2000, The Big Show, would wrestle his matches while mimicking other wrestlers, lampooning Rikishi as Showkishi, The Berzerker as Shonan The Barbarian and Val Venis as The Big Showbowski and The Godfather as the Big Father. He faced Kurt Angle at Backlash 2000, and came to the ring dressed like his friend and role model Hulk Hogan. "The Showster" defeated Angle with ease.
- Mickie James as Trish Stratus.
- Trish Stratus as Mickie James.
- Vince McMahon as Ric Flair.
- Two males and two females as Hulk Hogan and his family.
- Jonathan Coachman as J.R.
- Al Snow as Jerry Lawler.
- Val Venis as J.R.
- Ivory as Chyna.
- Eric Bischoff as Vince McMahon.
- Matt Striker as the Ultimate Warrior.
- A fake Undertaker
- A fake Sting
- A fake masked Kane
- The James Gang as Team 3D
- Matt Striker as Jimmy Snuka
- Tajiri as Triple H
- Voodoo Kin Mafia as DX (These two members were actually The New Age Outlaws and were part of DX in WWE and they were known as Bad Ass Billy Gunn and Road Dogg Jesse James.)
- Edge and Christian as the two masked jobbers, Los Conquistadors
- Matt and Jeff Hardy as Los Conquistadors
- Goldust as The Rock.
- Kurt Angle as John Cena
- Two independent wrestlers dressed up as Donald Trump and Rosie O' Donnell in order to play up the real life feud between the two celebrities.
One time The Rock made then WWE interviewer, Kevin Kelly look like Chris Benoit by marking one of his upper teeth black.
Non Wrestlers in a match angle
Another example of an angle is when a kayfabe or real life non-pro wrestler is in a match. Usually those people would win a match by cheating or with help, whether they're a face or a heel:
- Vince McMahon: He has wrestled about 101 matches in 20 years. Notably vs Shawn Michaels at WrestleMania 22, his own son Shane McMahon at WrestleMania 17
- Shane McMahon (Was recognized as a full-time wrestler during his feud with Kane and his run as Hardcore Champion.)
- Stephanie McMahon (Won the Women's Championship in her first match against Jacqueline. Has also wrestled Trish Stratus, Sable, A-Train and Brock Lesnar. She has also teamed up with Zach Gowen in a handicap match against Big Show and was in a triple threat match against Triple H and Chris Jericho for the Undisputed Championship. Her last match wasa loss against her own father, Vince McMahon in an I Quit match with a stipulation being that the loser would have to quit their job. She was the Smackdown! GM at the time and she had to give up her role as GM.)
- Daivari (is a real life trained pro wrestler and eventually wrestled as a cruiserweight on Smackdown!)
- Armando Alejandro Estrada (wrestled in OVW)
- Eric Bischoff (is a real life karate expert)
- Michael Cole : Although at the time he never wrestled a match in all his WWE career, he was involved in some angles
- Kevin Federline
- William Perry and other Chicago Bears
- Josh Matthews (was trained as a real life pro wrestler on Tough Enough.)
- Donald Trump at WrestleMania 23 (Although he didn't wrestle, he was involved in the Battle of the Billionaires Hair VS Hair match.)
- WCW and WWE referrees :
- Harvey W.
- Toby Keith
- AJ Piersynski
- Dale Torborg : Although he is a former WCW Wrestler.
- Chris Rock
- Adam Jecht