The 8 coolest things Batista has ever worn
The editorial staff here at WWE.com doesn’t pretend to know much about fashion, but we’re pretty sure Batista is the best dressed man who ever lived. The only 300-pound dude who isn’t afraid (and is somehow able) to wear skinny jeans, The Animal suits up in Ralph Lauren and limited edition Air Jordans while every other muscled out tough guy is draping themselves in ugly Affliction tees and Ed Hardy jeans.
Almost singlehandedly, Batista has stepped up the game for Superstar style — once a borderline oxymoron — and led every other guy in the locker room to stuff their Zubaz and fanny packs into the Salvation Army drop box and head for the nearest John Varvatos. How’d he do it? These eight outfits certainly helped.
Denim on denim used to be fashion’s cardinal sin. Apart from Jay Leno, no celebrity would ever match their blue jeans with a blue jean shirt. Nowadays, though, you’ll see every Hollywood dandy from David Beckham to Ryan Gosling stepping out in the so-called “Canadian Tuxedo.” Why’s that, you might ask? Because Batista had the guts to do it first. Rocking a jean jacket with corresponding dungarees (and no shirt — Batista avoids shirts whenever possible) on SmackDown in 2010, The Animal had his sights set on becoming the WWE Champion and ended up a champion for wrongfully disgraced menswear. Oh, Canada!
All black everything
Batista has never been afraid of a pop of color (you’ll see a lot of that later), but The Animal wears black better than any man in WWE besides The Undertaker. That’s because when he does it, he goes all out. Black on black on black. Full dark, no stars. Murdered out. That’s how Batista did it on SmackDown on Oct. 5, 2010 (pictured above), May 27, 2008, and Jan. 30, 2007 — just to name a few. Had the name not been permanently attached to Johnny Cash, “The Man in Black” would’ve fit The Animal just fine.
Red Ralph Lauren polo shirt
The red polo. The white sunglasses. The beaded bracelet. The fact that he was appearing “live via satellite.” The Batista WWE fans saw on the Feb. 15, 2010, Raw was a man who was perfecting his role as antagonist, going beyond the snort and snarl of basic physical intimidation and utilizing everything available to incite the audience — from his posture to, perhaps more than anything, his shirt. The Animal didn’t need to bark and bite to hear boos, he just needed to nick the wardrobe of a country club bully. Who knew it could be so easy?
"No Paparazzi" T-shirt
It’s pretty much agreed that anyone who wears a T-shirt with the words “No Paparazzi” splashed across the front is actually inviting the paparazzi (or at least a guy with an iPhone) to take their picture. Or, if they’re truly not, they are at least letting everyone around them know that, yes, they are important enough to warrant the attention of said paparazzi. Either way, the act of provoking with a simple T-shirt slogan has already been accomplished.
White track jacket, no shirt
We imagine Batista prepped his return outfit the way a teenager plans out their clothes for the first day back at school. That doesn't mean The Animal went extravagant for his comeback after a nearly four-year absence, but he did go specific. The form fit shirtless track jacket, the skintight jeans and even the running sneakers were all particularly Batista. We hadn’t seen style like this since the big man went away (most Superstars have just been doing that odd thing where they wear their own T-shirt over tights so they appear pantsless like Porky Pig), which made us even happier to have him back.
Running alongside Ric Flair in Evolution, Batista learned a lot of things (most of which we can’t share on this website), but The Nature Boy’s most vital bit of advice for The Animal may have been how to wear a suit. Nobody — not even Batista — sported a three-piece like Slick Ric, but the 2014 Royal Rumble Match winner came close to Naitch with this pinstripe stunner. This is Al Capone if Al Capone took out his rivals with running clotheslines and powerbombs. Straight gangster.
Pink Ralph Lauren polo shirt
If you thought pink polos would hurt The Animal, you were wrong. Sure, the Pepto-Bismol-colored shirt — with a popped collar, mind you — is normally favored by tabloid villains like Kanye West and that “American Psycho” looking guy from “Keeping Up with the Kardashians.” But wrapped around the 290-pound frame of a 6-foot-6 fighting machine like Batista, the top has a way of looking pretty damn cool. Besides, who’s going to tell The Animal otherwise?
Leather vest, no shirt
No ensemble screamed Batista quite like this one: A leather vest with no shirt underneath, sunglasses indoors, random jewelry (is that a kabbalah bracelet?). Even if it was just dangling from a hanger, you’d immediately know this outfit belonged to The Animal. No Superstar (besides maybe Adrian Adonis when he was part of The East-West Connection) ever went this hard. We’re grateful he did.