Karate Master was an anime series that aired in Japan about… karate. It also depicted American wrestlers and wrestling fans as xenophobic hate mongers. I have no idea whether or not this was supposed to be aimed at kids or adults at the time it came out, but the adult me definitely appreciated it more than 10-year-old me ever would have.
With Brock Lesnar having dominated John Cena at SummerSlam 2014 in a way nobody has ever done, and in a championship match no less, it’s only fitting The Art of Gimmickry explores the bad ass character. It’s safe to say that the idea or gimmick came about during the late 90’s, specifically around the Attitude Era. But not because of guys like “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, who was more of an anti-hero than a one-man wrecking machine. What really helped inform the creation of the bad ass gimmick was the rise of the UFC.