The Million Dollar Man Ted DiBiase is behind some of the most absurd, bizarre promo vignettes in pro wrestling history. They somehow have aged both really, really well (Ted DiBiase’s voice was extremely consistent throughout his career) and really, really poorly (Is … Virgil … a … real … life … slave?).
His Thanksgiving promo holds the title for Best Turkey Day Heel Work, but today — in part, because Jan. 18 is the Million Dollar Man’s 64th birthday — we’re going back in time to dive into the vignette that introduced Ted to television. Lo and behold, here’s Ted DiBiase showing us how rich (and unreasonable) he is by forking over $300 for a Band-Aid at a hospital:
DiBiase came into our lives the way he lived every second he was in them — counting money. The WWE Hall of Famer convinced kids all over the world that if you were rich it also meant you were a jerk, and it also meant that if you weren’t counting money constantly, then did you even have any money to begin with? Important questions
In this debut promo, DiBiase claims that people all over the world are unhappy with the way he spends his money — he makes this claim, even though we’re just meeting him for the first time. In his defense, he looks like the kind of person he’s describing, so this checks out. He then runs down a list of things he can buy with his money. Happiness, Love … and Us! I would love to see Ted be the centerpiece of WWE Network’s version of The Bachelor.
The best part about The Million Dollar Man is how unreasonable he is. Sure, he’s rich, but it’s how unfair he is, how gaudy he’s willing to be just to prove to people that he has the means to do so. His sense of style is so blatantly senseless (what the hell was he wearing; why was it so putrid and perfect at the same time) and the foolish handling of his finances were often times just plain dumb. Which, again, was perfect.
When he demands Virgil pull into an emergency room to address the cut on his finger, it’s rude, obnoxious, bold, and extremely inefficient. Just go into a drug store and save yourself $295. Give or take. Ravishing Rick Rude and Mr. Perfect were two of the other classic caricature heels of the ’80s. Ted DiBiase was like the best parts of each of them, but also rich. Could you see Rude or Curt Hennig dropping $300 for a band-aid?
The strangest part of all this: throughout this entire vignette, Ted DiBiase didn’t laugh once. While his trademark chuckle is sadly absent from the above video, it still serves as one of the greatest introductions via vignette in WWE history.