The McMahon family became a fixture on WWE television during the Attitude Era and remained involved for the most part of over two decades. Vince moving from commentary to the authority figure role and the occasional wrestling match inspired the idea of bringing his kids into the family business.
Shane had a few background roles learning the wrestling landscape, before joining the on-screen side of things in 1998. Stephanie followed suit, shortly after graduating college and has been involved since then. The use of the McMahon relatives in storylines can present various results. Each storyline in question shows just how much a McMahon can help or hurt the others involved.
10 Helped: Stephanie Disrespecting Ronda Rousey
The start of Ronda Rousey’s WWE career went as well as it could have during her feud with Stephanie McMahon and Triple H. Kurt Angle teamed with Rousey to wrestle Triple H and Stephanie in Rousey’s first-ever match at WrestleMania 34.
Stephanie’s heel work is usually on point and helped get fan support in favor of Rousey. WWE delivered a great match and used the hate for Stephanie to ensure Ronda had the chance to come out like the top star.
9 Hurt: Stephanie Being Part Of The Bella Vs. Bella Feud
The storyline of the Bella Twins facing off against each other featured Nikki Bella helping Stephanie McMahon defeat Brie Bella. WWE kept Stephanie involved by booking segments or matches in favor of Nikki.
The Bella vs. Bella sister feud turned out to be a huge disaster with everything going poorly from the start when Stephanie was involved. WWE reunited Brie and Nikki just three months into the feud when Brie helped Nikki beat AJ Lee for the Divas Championship.
8 Helped: Shane Standing Up To Kane
WWE unmasked Kane in the summer of 2003 and gave him a huge push as an unstoppable monster heel for the first time in years. Shane McMahon returned to avenge his mother Linda when she was one of the victims of a Kane attack.
The matches between Kane and Shane were the peak of Kane’s time as a heel after unmasking. Shane was able to deliver his spotlight moments in matches with little rules against Kane. The big wins for Kane helped set him up for a WrestleMania 20 match against The Undertaker.
7 Hurt: Vince McMahon Becoming ECW Champion Vs. Lashley
The ECW brand was a nightmare from the start when WWE hoped to make it a viable third show. Vince McMahon wanted to work a program with Bobby Lashley, when he viewed the young star as the next major talent to break out.
Lashley lost the ECW Championship to Vince as a way to gain sympathy for the face. The program was viewed as the death sentence of ECW, and the promotion never ended up turning the ship around. Lashley sadly didn’t even benefit since his momentum was lost in the matches with Vince.
6 Helped: Triple H Defending The Family Vs. Randy Orton
One of the most underrated storylines to feature McMahon family drama featured Triple H standing up against Randy Orton. The attacks from Orton on Vince and Shane McMahon set the stage for Stephanie to get involved.
Triple H saved his family as WWE recognized his relationship with the McMahons as Stephanie’s husband for the first time in years. The WrestleMania 25 match between Triple H and Orton was viewed as a flop, but the storyline leading to the show had a few outstanding segments.
5 Hurt: Shane Being Part Of Daniel Bryan’s Comeback
The return of Daniel Bryan to the ring in 2018 ended his three-year retirement when WWE doctors cleared him to compete. Bryan was in a SmackDown General Manager position when Shane McMahon was feuding with Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn.
The heels attacked Bryan after he announced his return when Shane was out with an injury. WWE made it a tag match with Shane returning to team with Bryan. A bigger impact would have been Bryan having a singles match against one of the two heels or someone else on the show, like The Miz.
4 Helped: Vince Trying To Stop Steve Austin’s Title Reign
The peak of Vince McMahon’s time as a character came when he had his legendary feud with Steve Austin. Fans already had a negative perception of Vince following the Montreal Screwjob and the heat was used to help the company’s new hot face.
McMahon tried to make life miserable for Austin after he won the WWE Championship to become the face of the company. Austin vs. McMahon generated huge box office success and took WWE to new highs in the Attitude Era.
3 Hurt: Vince McMahon Becoming The Higher Power
The flip side of the Steve Austin vs. Vince McMahon featured one of the worst storyline reveals in WWE history. WWE turned The Undertaker heel to lead the satanic Ministry of Darkness faction. Stephanie McMahon was stalked by Undertaker who wanted to torment Vince.
Austin even helped Vince for the first time in WWE when Stephanie was being held hostage by Undertaker. The mystery of a “higher power” giving Undertaker orders saw Vince revealed as the man pulling the strings, all to manipulate Austin.
2 Helped: Stephanie Dating Triple H
WWE struggled with Stephanie McMahon as a face character in the first few months of her debut. Stephanie was quite young coming out of college and had no acting experience. Luckily, the right character shift changed things for her and a rising star.
Triple H entered a relationship with Stephanie when both parties looked to embarrass and get revenge on Vince. The chemistry between Stephanie and Triple H led to incredible results as a heel act. Both careers changed for the better after their chemistry became undeniable on television.
1 Hurt: Stephanie Owning ECW
The Invasion storyline was among the most hyped storylines in WWE after WCW was purchased. Shane McMahon as the WCW owner was a polarizing move, but there were some positives in making the feud work.
The addition of Stephanie McMahon owning ECW to align with Shane and WCW was the point of no return. ECW’s spirit could have been solely represented by Paul Heyman, but the inclusion of Stephanie as the owner just turned the angle into another chapter of the McMahon family soap opera.