#13. Dexter Lumis
Creepy! But I really love that NXT is actually using Dexter Lumis, because I was a fan when he worked for Impact Wrestling as Samuel Shaw several years ago. NXT have got this gimmick nailed, and his entrance is so perfectly weird and out there. It’s like nothing else in the business… well, ever?? Can we remember anyone who looks like they just escaped from a mental clinic? I’d believe it if they said that was the case.
He’s so far gone in to this character that as a viewer, it reminds me of the old days when we couldn’t separate the real people from their gimmicks. Shaw is lost in the character of Dexter Lumis, and his entrance couldn’t be any better. I’m sure The Undertaker and others are very proud of the commitment.
#12. Aleister Black
There’s still a long way to go for Aleister Black, but the most important thing is that his entrance is one of the most unique in WWE history. It’s Gothic, loud, demonic, and done so well that he could time warp back to the Attitude Era and pair up with The Undertaker in the Ministry Of Darkness.
Sitting down in the ring highlights his calm demeanor before the inevitable brutality, which you could say is like “the quiet before the storm”. Black is readying himself for Black Mass, and everything about his entrance serves as a warning to his opponent. I’d like to see what a special entrance of his looks like in a main event of WrestleMania.
#11. Dalton Castle
The only Ring Of Honor entrance on this list consists of Dalton Castle’s tribute to Freddie Mercury, Queen’s song “I Want It All”, along with “The Boys” supporting him with their peacock feathers and gay flamboyance.
I’m still a little surprised he’s stuck in Ring Of Honor at this point, as there’s clearly entertainment value to be had there. Regardless, I think that Dalton Castle without his entrance would be a travesty. It wasn’t right when he did away with his boys too, so I’m glad they returned. Wrestling is supposed to be a show, and Dalton Castle gives us one.
#10. Tetsuya Naito
Slowly trundling his way in to the top ten is New Japan’s Heavyweight & Intercontinental Champion Tetsuya Naito. Now, I know those who are unaware of him will be like “what the hell kind of entrance is that!”, but let me assure you that it’s by design. Naito made the cool, I don’t give a f*** attitude famous long before Orange Cassidy introduced it to AEW.
As the leader of the Los Ingobernables stable, he’s often projected a leadership style befitting of a crime boss. However, Naito doesn’t care about prestige or working too hard. Upon his entrance, he will make his opponent wait… for a very long time. Naito will stroll down to the ring like a sloth on a bad day. When he finally gets to the ring, he will throw his title to the floor like he can’t be bothered to work the match.
And this is done to get in to the heads of his opponents. The mind games are by design and it all begins the second his music hits. Imagine being Hiroshi Tanahashi in the entrance below… you’d soon get pissed off. His entrance theme is crucial too, because if the music was slow and calm it would make sense… but because it’s fast and loud, it gives the impression that Naito’s slow walk takes longer than it actually does.
#9. Io Shirai
Arguably the best women’s entrance in the business today belongs to NXT’s Io Shirai. The dark atmosphere, the flashes, and the way she throws her body around, gives us a sense of manic energy. Best done after Io turned heel, the entrance was a far cry from what we had seen from her before.
The transformation was essential and seriously well done, showing again that WWE can repackage superstars the right way. I’m looking forward to seeing how her entrance evolves over the years, but I also think it’s a shame other women wrestler’s don’t get entrances like this. In the video below, Io Shirai does not use her usual theme for this special entrance.
“Just Like A Prayer” -Madonna. There’s only one Grado. Sure, he’s one of those who can evoke strong emotions either way, but it cannot be denied that his entrances in ICW are some of the most exciting. Dancing away to Madonna, everyone in attendance can’t help but sing along as Grado heads to the ring.
And what’s not to love? I mean, I do think you probably need to be Scottish to fully appreciate it, but in what other show would we ever see a room full of men singing a Madonna song almost word for word? It doesn’t happen, not unless you’re seeing Grado live. When he got to Impact Wrestling and couldn’t use Madonna’s song… it just wasn’t the same. Why did she have to screw Grado?? It’s free advertisement.
#7. Minoru Suzuki
For a guy known for delivering endless amounts of carnage, he sure has one of the calmest entrance themes ever. Minoru Suzuki’s entrance is like a polar opposite to what I described about Tetsuya Naito’s above. Suzuki is explosive in the ring, so his tranquil music lures us in to a false sense of security.
Not only that, but the lyrics have been a fan favourite for years. Suzuki always makes sure he gets to the ring in time for the fans to sing “KAZE NI NARE!” in unison. I love audience participation in wrestling, even more so as part of an entrance. And this is why I think Suzuki has the best entrance in New Japan, and it will likely remain so til his retirement.
#6. Darby Allin
Seriously though, how did this not happen sooner? Why did it take til 2019 or whenever it was that he started doing it… for someone to skateboard down to the ring? You’d think someone would have done it twenty years ago when skateboarding was one of the coolest things you could do, but I guess it’s better than never?
We all know that if anyone tries copying it, they’ll always be compared to Darby Allin. And that’s what we need from entrances in the current era, we need more unique experiences and not simply watching wrestlers walk to the ring with no motivation to stand out. Dare to be different like Darby Allin? There’s nothing wrong with giving something a shot.