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  • Awesome Music: During a period when both WCW and WWF were using in-house bands and music for entrance and PPV themes, Paul Heyman just raided his CD collection. Few of the tracks were officially licensed, which led to them being replaced with cover versions or generic music when the shows were released on video. The results (including Sandman making his entrance to a bouncy Euro-pop number) can be jarring to say the least.
  • Crossing the Line Twice: A lot of angles, but notoriously the crucifixion of The Sandman by Raven.
    • Anything and everything out of Joel Gertner's mouth.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • Witness a particularly brutal spot involving weapons? You are due to chant "E-C-DUB! E-C-DUB! E-C-DUB!".
    • "He's Hardcore! He's Hardcore!" is the crowd's acknowledgement of someone being beyond-Badass.
    • Commentating legend Joey Styles going "OH MY GOD!!!"
    • And Paul Heyman's Ascended Meme of "Drinking the Kool-Aid".
    • "Well, well, is I, Joel 'Hotter than tabasco sauce, but loads easier to swallow' Gertner."
    • The crowd chanting "YOU FUCKED UP!" over and over whenever somebody messed up a move or a spot.
    • ECW pioneered the art of brawling and wrestling all over the building. Unfortunately, with such a low budget, the chant "CAN'T SEE SHIT!" was introduced.
    • "From the Harley Races, to the Barry Windhams, to the... Ric Flairs!" "Nevermind that shit, here comes Mongo!"
  • Moment of Awesome: There were a lot. See the appropriate page for a full rundown.
  • Newer Than They Think: ECW was the first pro wrestling company to feature wrestlers tapping out to submissions as in Mixed Martial Arts, introduced by Taz. Before this, wrestlers only verbally signaled to the referee.
  • Rescued From the Scrappy Heap: Tommy Dreamer was a pretty-boy face who, on the surface, had absolutely no business being in ECW - and the fans made their feelings about Dreamer perfectly clear. Then he lost a match to The Sandman, took numerous Singapore cane shots to his back, then famously told Sandman "Thank you sir, may I have another?!" before getting further beaten. In that one moment, Tommy became a legitimate fan favorite.
    • Mike Awesome who was legitimately hated by the fans after jumping to WCW with the ECW title jumped out of the Scrappy Heap by himself after his performance against Masato Tanaka at the Original ECW One Night Stand event.
  • The Problem with Licensed Games: The promotion had a couple of awful games back in the early 2000s, made by Acclaim (who had lost the WWF license to THQ) and using the same (crappy) engine as their last two WWF games. Some (less-than-)professional reviewers used the ECW games as a launching board to decry the promotion, along with pro wrestling as a whole.
  • The Scrappy: Justin Credible, one of the last ECW World Heavyweight Champions, was eventually looked upon as this. After a feud with Jerry "Carry Artist" Lynn made him look like a legitimately great wrestler, this merely-passable pro was pushed as the #1 heel in the company, and the fans let him know that he didn't really deserve it. Easily one of the least-liked World Champions ever.
    • Invoked by Paul Heyman, who wanted a long-term ECW Champion: so he put the belt on the one wrestler that neither of the "Big 2" were ever going to even try to sign.
  • Seinfeld Is Unfunny: A large part of the reason most modern wrestling fans view ECW as nothing more than a blood and guts promotion is because everything ECW did that was revolutionary in wrestling at the time is so commonplace in today's wrestling atmosphere that it's the only thing that stands out.
  • Squick: Sabu vs. Terry Funk in a Barbed Wire Match; it's a match so violently disturbing that some viewers will admit to only watching it once in its entirety. It was also a gimmick match that Paul Heyman said he refused to book again in ECW, because he didn't think anyone could top that one - and he didn't want anyone else to try.
    • Fortunately for the fans, Shane Douglas booked a Barbed Wire Three-Way-Dance between Sabu, Funk, and himself for Hardcore Homecoming - and it was just as disturbingly brilliant as the original.
    • How can anyone forget the Taipei Death Match? Ian and Axl Rotten decide to battle it out by taping up their fists and forearms, covering them with hot glue, and then roll their glued-up arms in broken glass. And then they went to town on each other. Dear lord, what a bloodbath.
  • Too Good to Last: Tommy Dreamer mentioned that ECW was one of the only wrestling promotions to go out of business while still maintaining a healthy number of fans.
  • The Woobie: Arguably, Tommy Dreamer; every time he was on the verge of a major victory, someone would always manage to cause him to lose. Even when he got the victories he was looking for, they were short lived (for example: the night he won the ECW Championship, he lost it just a little while later to Justin Credible).
    • At its worst during his epic feud with Raven. Despite mixing it up nearly every week, it took Tommy two-and-a-half years to finally score a decisive win over Raven (on Raven's last night before jumping to WCW).
    • Word of God has that this was intention - at least the not-winning-the-title part, at any rate. Dreamer mentioned he would have liked to have spent his entire career without a title, but only won them due to circumstances beyond his control.