Professional wrestling is a unique storytelling medium. Its oddball mix of soap opera theatrics and simulated combat creates the kind of narratives that just can't exist anywhere else, even in "real" sports. They provide the glue that holds the athletic spectacle together, and from Hogan vs. Andre to Austin vs. McMahon, wrestling has delivered countless era-defining storylines over the past few decades.
Unfortunately, it has also served up an ungodly amount of dross.
Ideas like David Arquette's WCW Championship run and Road Warrior Hawk's alcohol addiction angle should've never made it onto television. They were doomed from the start, and it was clear they weren't going to succeed from the moment they hit our screens, but failure isn't always immediately apparent, and wrestling's creative teams have a longstanding habit of turning gold into dirt.
WWE are particularly culpable when it comes to ruining promising storylines, but they're far from alone. Unfortunately, sports entertainment history is full of angles that started with the momentum of a runaway freight train, but flew off the rails before the journey was even complete. Here are some of the more notable examples of this maddening tendency.