Recently, wrestling legend Hulk Hogan made his long-awaited return to Monday Night Raw for the first time since 2015 after that videotape was released. Hogan quickly and swiftly was fired by the WWE for his comments as soon as they were released and he was also stripped of his place in the WWE Hall of Fame. Remarkably, after a slew of apologies, WWE re-hired Hogan earlier this year and reinstated him into their Hall of Fame. He made his onscreen return at WWE's Crown Jewel pay-per-view event in Saudi Arabia while he did not return to WWE's weekly television series - Monday Night Raw - until this past Monday.
Like any company in the world - in the entertainment business or otherwise - no company wants to deal with anything untoward. Especially when it's centered around their biggest star. Considering that after all of the drama that WWE would wind up bringing him back anyway, we would bet the company would wish that it the contents of that tape was never released in the first place. Actually, there are a number of stories about Hulk Hogan - and even a few photos featuring him - that WWE wishes never got out to the public. Heck, half of those stories Hulk himself probably wishes never got out about him. Most of those stories and photos can be found below.
24 On the road - DRESSING UP AS THE IRON SHEIK
Throughout his career, Hulk Hogan would frequently square off against onscreen rival The Iron Sheik. For Halloween in 2015, The Hulkster would pay homage to his sparring partner by dressing up as him.
He thought the dress up routine was pretty funny, but his hoard of followers saw differently when they saw it. Some comments accused the get-up as a racist way to dress-up. More than anything, it was just bad timing on Hogan's part considering he posted this picture mere months after he was fired from WWE following the release of his infamous tape.
23 On the road - DRIVING AWAY FROM PAPS WITH KIDS
Due to the success of their reality television show Hogan Knows Best, Hulk's kids Nick and Brooke Hogan reached a level of notoriety that rivaled that of their famous father's. Fame has its perks, but it also comes with its downsides.
For most celebrities, that downside would be the lack of privacy from fans with cameras and - worst of all - the paparazzi with cameras. Here we can see just how dejected and a big annoyed Nick and Hulk Hogan especially look as they are being snapped by the paps while driving away.
22 On the road - HANGING OUT WITH HIS DOPPELGANGER
They say that mimicking is the sincerest form of flattery. Well, we do not think Hulk Hogan is the type of person to be so flattered by someone trying to copy his looks considering that he almost sued the Cocoa Pebbles cereal brand for using his likeness in a commercial.
We will get to that in a minute, but for now, let's focus on this picture that Hogan took with a fan who mimicked his appearance. It looks like Hogan's struggling to force a smile on this one.
21 On the road - ON A PLANE WITH TODD CHRISLEY
Todd Chrisley is a flamboyant and wealthy real estate mogul. Chrisley also happens to be the reality television star of Chrisley Knows Best, which coincidentally airs new episodes every Tuesday night right after WWE wrestling program SmackDown Live.
Adding to the coincidence is that once he and Hulk Hogan happened to book the same flight. The two decided to take a picture together and Hogan was happy to post it to his Twitter page. He may not have been so happy to see so many derogatory comments about Chrisley underneath. Apparently, wrestling fans aren't fans of Chrisley Knows Best.
20 On the road - CAUGHT NAPPING ON A PLANE
Wrestling is a long, exhausting and demanding position. WWE wrestlers are expected to travel on the road 24 hours a day for seven days a week. Hulk Hogan is no stranger to this sort of schedule. Even these days when he has been long retired, those exhausting tour dates caught up to the former champion and he still tries to catch up on all of the rest he missed back in the day. Sometimes, that means he tries to play catch up on his sleep during a plane ride.
Unfortunately, this can be a bit embarrassing when fans snap a pic of him sleeping on the plane, like in this picture right here. Keep in mind that this was not the first time Hogan was caught napping on a plane, and it wouldn't be the last.
19 On the road - CAUGHT ON A PLANE...AGAIN
Multiple WWE Championship winning Real American Hulk Hogan is arguably the most recognizable professional wrestler on the face of the planet. That includes wrestlers who are living or not.
With that said, any celebrity who is so easily and instantly recognizable should probably be sure that they are not left wide open for people in the public to take unflattering pictures of them. Apparently, Hogan never got that memo seeing how he dozed off during his flight and left himself wide open; sleeping with a video playing on his phone no less.
18 On the road - ARRIVING AT LAX AIRPORT
Here, we see Hulk Hogan smiling as he arrives at the Los Angeles International Airport straight off of a plane, or perhaps he's about to board a flight, it is hard to tell here. What is also hard to tell is trying to figure out who or what Hogan is smiling at off-screen in this photo. If one thing is for sure, it is that he isn't smiling at the camera.
In fact, we are completely positive that Hogan had no clue that he was being photographed in this moment. Just for a disclaimer, ladies and gentlemen: it's not cool to photograph a celeb when they don't want to be photographed.
17 On the road - TAKING PICS WITH A FAN AT THE AIRPORT
We do not think we have ever heard of an instance where a celebrity enjoyed being approached by a fan at the airport. Being idolized is always a humbling experience, but there is a time and a place for everything and cornering somebody when they're fresh off of a plane is never the time or the place to do so.
We think that Hulk Hogan would agree, especially when we look at so many fan photos like this where his eyes look bloodshot and tired behind a crooked smile.
16 On the road - FIRST PUBLIC APPEARANCE SINCE GETTING FIRED BY WWE
Days after Hogan was fired by WWE, he made his first public appearance since then by heading to the gym with his wife, fitness enthusiast Jennifer McDaniel. Clearly, even in light of an embarrassing exit from the company that made him a superstar, the two fitness freaks could not risk getting puny by hiding indoors.
Still, Hulk Hogan did not look to be in kindred spirits when stepping into the gym, especially when he caught wind of a sneaky camera that took a pic of him heading inside.
15 On the road - TAKES PIC WITH BAM MARGERA, THEN POSTS PIC AS TRIBUTE THINKING BAM PASSED AWAY
Here, Hulk Hogan can be seen taking a picture with prankster and stuntman extraordinaire Bam Margera. There is nothing wrong with the picture itself, but it is how Hogan used the picture that was rather embarrassing.
Back in May 2018 on Twitter, Hogan posted this picture to his page, tweeting out what he thought would be a heartwrenching tribute to Bam Margera in light of the anniversary of his passing. Except Margera was still alive and well. Hogan mistook Bam for Ryan Dunn. Hogan was embarrassed enough to delete his tweet, but Bam simply laughed it off. Still, the situation had to have made Hogan feel like a real Jackass.
14 UNTOLD - RATTED TO VINCE MCMAHON ABOUT JESSE VENTURA STARTING A UNION
Back in the '80s at the height of the United States wrestling craze, wrestler/commentator/future governor Jesse "The Body" Ventura was planning to start a union in WWE against Vince McMahon. Not out of malicious intent against Vince specifically, but to make sure that he and his fellow wrestlers would be covered medically long after their careers ended.
When word got back to Vince's #1 golden boy, Hogan told Vince what he heard and it put a stop to any union that Ventura had planned. To this day, contracted WWE wrestlers do not have health insurance.
13 UNTOLD - BOB BACKLUND REFUSED TO LOSE TO HULK HOGAN
Long before Hulk Hogan served as WWE's top guy, fellow WWE Hall of Famer Bob Backlund filled that role. Before Hulk Hogan got signed to WWE, Backlund was WWE Champion for a total of 2,135 days according to WWE records.
When Hogan arrived and got a part in Rocky III, plans were in place for Backlund to pass the torch to Hogan. That didn't sit well with Backlund, who refused to lose a match to Hogan because Hogan did not come from a traditional wrestling background. Even years later, following Hogan's 2015 firing, Backlund professed, according to Wrestlinginc, that Hogan "didn't meet the standards outside the ring to be able to represent the WW[E]. Did the WWE fire him recently? Because, I would have fired him 30 years ago. He was saying one thing and doing another."
When Backlund refused to lose to Hogan, he instead dropped the WWE Championship to The Iron Sheik, who lost then lost the title to Hogan a month later.
12 UNTOLD - HE ALMOST PLAYED MR. FREEZE IN BATMAN & ROBIN
Anyone who has seen Joel Schumacher's Batman & Robin knows just how downright goofy that movie is. It would have had the potential to get even goofier if Hulk Hogan was anywhere near the set. We say that because before Arnold was brought along as a member of the cast, Hulk Hogan was in the running to play Mr. Freeze.
All Arnie had to do was decline the part and Hogan would have been next on the producer's call list. Still, had he got the part, it still would have been Hogan's best movie to date.
11 UNTOLD - HIS REAL LIFE FEUD WITH SHAWN MICHAELS
A couple years after Hulk Hogan exited the WWE in the '90s and jumped ship to the company's competitor WCW, The Heartbreak Kid Shawn Michaels would end up becoming WWE Champion and taking the mantle of the brand's top star.
When Hogan returned to WWE in the 2000s, the two legends would go one on one for the first time ever at the SummerSlam 2005 pay-per-view. Plans were in place for the two to have a best of three series with Michaels winning at some point. However, Hogan refused to lose the first match and demanded to win at the event. When HBK caught wind of this, he deliberately sabotaged their match by overacting the whole time with goofy mannerisms. Hogan was so furious that their next two matches were cancelled.
10 UNTOLD - LEARNED HIS WIFE WAS LEAVING HIM DURING INTERVIEW
After over 25 years of marriage, Linda Claridge filed for divorce against Hulk Hogan. During an interview, Hogan was asked by a reporter about the divorce news, but no one was more shocked than Hogan regarding the news.
"Thanks for the great information," Hogan thanked the reported by telling him about his own divorce. “I’m kind of shocked. You caught me off-guard. My wife has been in California for about three weeks ... Holy smokes. Wow, you just knocked the bottom out of me … I just pulled over to the side of the road for five minutes to find out what was going on here.”
9 UNTOLD - BROKE HIS LEG DURING FIRST DAY OF TRAINING
Anyone will tell you that the first day at the gym is always tough. The only thing tougher has to be training to be a wrestler at the gym. Taking notice of his physique, Hogan was discovered by wrestling legends Jack and Jerry Brisco after Hogan spent time working out at their gym.
They asked him if he would try out being a wrestler, he accepted, then the brothers acquired the services of fellow legend Hiro Matsuda to train him. To see just how tough and willing to learn The Hulkster was to becoming a wrestler, Matsuda intentionally hurt Hogan's leg.
8 UNTOLD - TOOK HIS HEADBAND BACK FROM A YOUNG DWAYNE "THE ROCK" JOHNSON
Long before he became Hollywood's highest paid actor, The Rock was one of WWE's most popular main eventers. Even before that, he was just a kid who watched his father and grandfather wrestle from the sidelines.
One night, the same night that his dad Rocky Johnson was wrestling, Hulk Hogan was also on the card and tossed his signature bandanna to the crowd. A young Dwayne caught it. As Rock would explain years later, he boasted about it to his dad backstage, but Hogan approached the small child asking for his bandanna back because it was his only one. Young Rock was deflated, but two weeks later, Hogan gave the bandanna back to the child after he purchased thousands of more headbands.
Since then, The Rock and Hogan have become good friends and even wrestled each other a few times.
7 UNTOLD - SUED COCOA PEBBLES FOR USING HIS LIKENESS IN A COMMERCIAL
In 2010, the Cocoa Pebbles cereal brand aired a "Cocoa Smashdown" commercial that featured an animated wrestler who looked suspiciously like Hulk Hogan. He had long blond locks that matched Hogan's, as well as a similar handlebar mustache. Even more suspicious is that the character's name was Hulk Boulder, a name that Hogan briefly used in the '70s before signing with WWE.
Hogan was none too pleased with the kids' cereal brand using his likeness without his permission and to stop this from happening again, he slapped them with a cease and desist. He was also none too pleased that this Hulk Boulder ripoff got beat up by children in the commercial.
6 UNTOLD - WHY HARLEY RACE PULLED A Weapon ON HULK HOGAN
While Hulkamania was running wild in WWE, Harley Race was creating similar success in WCW as the NWA World Heavyweight Champion. Back in the day, different wrestling promotions were expected to stay in their own territories. Things got hectic when Hulk Hogan found himself in Kansas City during a tour. As a guy who ran the Kansas territory, Race was none too pleased.
While Hogan was in his dressing room, Race stormed into the building and into his dressing room, proceeding to slap the WWE Champion. When Hogan quipped that he was surprised Race didn't have a weapon on him, Race revealed his .38 Special. Hogan was petrified, but suddenly relieved when Race put it away and shook Hogan's hand. Hogan seemed to earn the respect of the leader of a rival promotion.
5 UNTOLD - SUED BY RICHARD BELZER FROM LAW AND ORDER
One of the earliest examples of a controversial scandal that sent shockwaves through the WWE was when Hulk Hogan appeared on a Lifetime talk show with Mr. T to promote the first ever WrestleMania event. The show happened to be hosted by Richard Belzer, who years later would join the cast of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit as John Munch.
Out of curiosity, Belzer asked the WWE Champion to show him his best moves. Big mistake. Hogan applied a chin lock on Belzer, accidentally applying too much pressure and causing Belzer to collapse unconscious on live television. The fall split the back of Belzer's head wide open and inspired him to file a five million lawsuit against Hogan, followed by another 5 million lawsuit. The settlement was around $500,000.
4 UNTOLD - STORY TO WHY HE HAD A BLACK EYE AT WRESTLEMANIA 9
Fans who saw WrestleMania 9 may remember that Hulk Hogan walked into the show donning a black eye. In the storyline, he was jumped off-screen by goons hired by onscreen rivals Money Inc. In later years, Hogan would claim that he received the black eye following a jet ski ride right before the show, but his peers would suggest something else.
A strong rumor would suggest that Hogan received the black eye backstage from Macho Man Randy Savage after Savage learned that Miss Elizabeth - Savage's real-life wife - was having an affair with Hogan's friend while Hogan kept the news secret from Macho Man. Matt Borne - who played Doink the Clown on WWE TV - would corroborate the story in a radio interview while Macho Man criticized Hogan long after they retired.
3 UNTOLD - MACHO MAN RAPPED A DISS TRACK TO HULK
Yep, you read that correctly. Long after Macho Man Randy Savage hung up his boots, he picked up a mic and started rapping. This wasn't for a skit or a movie role either. Macho Man took his newfound rap career very seriously, dropping an album in 2003 called Be A Man.
The title track on that album was, in fact, a diss track to Hulk Hogan. Savage's brother - Lanny Poffo - would confirm that Hogan and Savage reconciled before his death in 2011, but judging by the harsh words Savage spewed on his album about Hogan, we kinda find it hard to believe they made up afterwards.
2 UNTOLD - CLAIMED THAT HE WAS ASKED TO BE METALLICA'S GUITARIST
Long before he would flex his muscles in front of sold-out arenas, Hogan would do so at junior high school dances. While he himself was in junior high, of course. Back when he was a teen, Hogan played guitar and after he dropped out of college, he joined a band called Ruckus.
Hogan once claimed that he was "big pals with Lars Ulrich, and he asked me if I wanted to play bass with Metallica in their early days, but it didn’t work out." Following this quote, Ulrich was asked about this in an interview with Howard Stern. Ulrich had no idea who Hulk Hogan was. Hogan would later back peddle and say he sent an audition tape to be Metallica's bass guitarist but got no response.
1 UNTOLD: GEORGE FOREMAN GRILL WAS SUPPOSED TO BE HULK HOGAN GRILL
Long before George Forman became synonymous with owning grills, The Hulk Hogan Grill was considered. The story here is that Hulk Hogan and George Forman once shared a manager in 1994. One day, said manager calls Hogan up and asks if he was interested in endorsing kitchen appliances, specifically a grill.
Hogan admitted he had no interest in grills and told his manager to give the grill idea to another one of his clients. Instead, he decided to invest in the Hulkamania Meatball Maker, which flopped. Hogan must still be kicking himself over that decision.
References: sportskeeda.com, wikipedia.com, thesportster.com