Lisa Marie Varon
Lisa Marie Varon, née Lisa Marie Sole, better known as Victoria (born February 10, 1971 in San Bernardino, California) is an American professional wrestler and professional wrestling valet, currently working for the RAW brand of World Wrestling Entertainment.
Varon was born to a Puerto Rican father and a Turkish mother. Varon is thought by some to resemble wrestler Lance Storm; in a running gag, Storm maintains via his website that he and Varon are siblings, but this is not the case (the two are unrelated).
Lisa Marie Varon grew up with three older brothers, all of whom became amateur wrestlers. After studying Bio-Med at UCLA and Loma Linda University with thoughts of becoming a doctor, Varon worked as a Human Tissue Coordinator at the Inland Eye and Tissue Bank in Redlands, California, where she was heavily involved in the process of organ donation (she has stated that she would someday like to return to the field of organ donation).
Varon later began pursuing a career in bodybuilding, fitness modelling and acting. She appeared on ESPN's Fitness America Series in 1997 and 1998, winning on the latter occasion, and had roles in V.I.P. and Nikki in May and October 2000 respectively. While in South Florida for the 1998 Miss Galaxy Competition, Varon met and befriended fellow fitness contestant Torrie Wilson. The following year, Wilson signed a contract with the professional wrestling promotion World Championship Wrestling, and invited Varon to a WCW television taping.
While visiting Torrie Wilson backstage at a WCW show, a road agent asked Varon to appear in a segment with Scott Hall. Varon filmed the segment, which featured her sitting on Hall's lap and playing with his hair, and began considering pursuing a career in wrestling. After Wilson tried, unsuccessfully, to obtain a WCW contract for Varon, she returned to California in an attempt to secure work in the television industry.
World Wrestling Federation
While working for Crunch Fitness as a trainer in Los Angeles, California in 2000, Varon met World Wrestling Federation employee Chyna, who complemented her on her appearance and encouraged her to become a wrestler. Chyna introduced Varon to WWF officials Jim Ross and Kevin Kelly, and she was hired. Varon was assigned to Ultimate Pro Wrestling, a Southern Californian developmental territory and training camp of the WWF. While training in UPW, Varon was given the gimmick of a domineering cheerleader known as the H.B.I.C. (Head Bitch In Charge).
Like several other divas, including Ivory and Lita, Varon made her on-screen debut in the WWF as one of The Godfather's "hos" (whores), Victoria (named after the British monarch of the same name). After The Godfather lost a match to Bull Buchanan on July 19, 2000, and was subsequently indoctrinated by the conservative Right to Censor faction, Varon and the other hos were, in storyline terms, made redundant. Varon, billed as the "head ho", began a "save the hos" campaign, protesting with placards during R.T.C. matches. R.T.C. eventually responded, with leader Steven Richards ordering The Godfather, now known as "The Goodfather", to drive Varon through a table on the August 7, 2000, episode of RAW. Varon, in her capacity as ho, made one more appearance on WWF television. On the October 9, 2000, episode of RAW, GTV footage of Varon and another ho, Mandy, cavorting in a shower with Eddie Guerrero was responsible for the on-screen breakup of Guerrero and his fiancée, Chyna, precipitating the heel turn of Guerrero.
Varon, by now contracted as a wrestler, was sent to Memphis Championship Wrestling in Memphis, Tennesse, another WWF developmental territory. In MCW, she acted as commissioner for a time, managed Steve Bradley, and feuded with Stacy Carter and R.T.C. member Ivory. In 2001, with MCW closing, she was transferred to Ohio Valley Wrestling in Louisville, Kentucky, where she trained under Molly Holly. Using the name Queen Victoria, Varon managed "The Machine" Doug Basham and The Damaja, later known collectively as the Basham Brothers
World Wrestling Entertainment
After spending a considerable amount of time training in MCW and OVW, Varon returned to the renamed World Wrestling Entertainment, on the July 7, 2002 episode of Sunday Night Heat, losing to Trish Stratus. She was formally reintroduced on the August 5, 2002 episode of RAW as Victoria, the heel trainee of Molly Holly. Her character was quickly established as that of a psychopath who was jealous of Stratus's success and wanted to make Stratus's life a living hell.
In the culmination of a feud lasting four months, Victoria defeated Stratus for the WWE Women's Championship in a hardcore match at Survivor Series 2002. The following night on RAW, she defeated Stacy Keibler and debuted her finisher, the "Widow's Peak". After the match, Steven Richards foiled an attempt at retribution by Stratus, beginning a pairing with Victoria that would last for over a year.
Varon's feud with Stratus continued for several more months, encompassing a street fight on the January 27, 2003 episode of RAW which was won by Victoria, considered by some fans to be among the best women's matches in WWE history. Varon's reign lasted until WrestleMania XIX when she lost to Stratus in a triple threat match which also included Jazz. Following the loss, it was speculated that she had dropped the title in order to allow for her to have surgery on her right knee, which she had injured some time earlier. However, instead of having surgery, Varon opted (on the advice of Stone Cold Steve Austin) to wear a knee brace during matches, a practice she continues to this day.
Victoria's most notable theme music during this time was "All the Things She Said" by T.A.T.u.. For the remainder of 2003, Victoria continued to compete in the women's division, in addition to accompanying the by now self-proclaimed "General Manager of Heat" Stevie Richards wherever he went. As time progressed, she began to receive face reactions, prompting the WWE creative team to turn her into a face by the end of 2003.
With the WWE creative team unconvinced that Varon's gimmick would befit a face wrestler, Victoria began to exhibit certain characteristics of a "good girl," such as having a more revealing wardrobe, allowing young boys to kiss her while she approached the ring and dancing at the top of the ramp to techno music. The drastic character change was criticised by a number of fans who complained that it lacked an explanation and deprived Varon of an unique gimmick.
Victoria's face run began with a feud with then-Women's Champion Molly Holly. On the February 23, 2004 episode of RAW, Victoria won a four-way elimination match to capture the Women's Championship for a second time. Her feud with Molly reached its zenith at WrestleMania XX on March 14, 2004 , where Varon pinned Holly, who subsequently had her head shaved bald as a result of a stipulation of the match. She lost the Women's Championship on June 13, 2004 at Bad Blood 2004 in a four-way match which also included Gail Kim (with whom she was feuding with at the time), Lita, and a heel Stratus who won the match. The match was originally scheduled to be a singles bout between Victoria and Gail Kim, but Stratus and Lita were added to the match on the episode of RAW preceding the pay-per-view.
Varon renewed her feud with Stratus with Stevie (who had left her without any on-air explanation several months earlier) coming to her aid while dressed as a woman when she was menaced by Stratus's henchman, Tyson Tomko. However, a hand injury suffered by Stratus at a house show would derail the feud for several weeks. Their feud resumed after SummerSlam 2004, but by this point, WWE was more concerned with building up a feud between Trish and Lita, so their feud received little attention. Their second feud culminated on September 12, 2004 at Unforgiven 2004, where Stratus retained her title with the help of Tomko.
Following the end of the feud, Victoria continued to compete in the women's divison, albeit with her on-air time greatly reduced. The releases of Gail Kim, Nidia, and Jazz left little competition in the division for Victoria. Due to these releases and the signing of women from the WWE Diva Search competitions, it was widely assumed that Varon would be released from the company. However, this was not the case.
Back to a heel
On the May 30, 2005 episode of RAW, Victoria became a heel once again by attacking Maria Kanellis, Candice Michelle, Jerry "The King" Lawler and Christy Hemme following a loss to Christy in a swimsuit contest, citing jealousy at the opportunities Hemme had received. Her actions were met with applause by the audience, which was interpreted by some as annoyance on the part of the crowd at the influx of female performers with limited wrestling experience. Victoria went on to defeat Hemme at Vengeance 2005 on June 26, 2005, where once again she enjoyed the support of the live audience. During this time, she also had a brief rivalry with Stacy Keibler.
Victoria was eventually introduced as the enforcer of Torrie Wilson and Candice Michelle on RAW, helping them attack 2005 Diva Search winner, Ashley Massaro. Eventually a returning Trish Stratus came to Ashley's aid. This would set up a tag match at Unforgiven, where the team of Massaro and Stratus defeated Varon and Wilson.
At WWE Homecoming, the team of Stratus and Ashley defeated Candice Michelle, Torrie, and Victoria in a handicap Bra and Panties Match. The next week, Victoria lost to Stratus and tried to attack Stratus after the match, but Victoria was attacked by the debuting Mickie James. The following week saw Mickie James debut match which was the team of Torrie Wilson, Victoria and Candice Michelle against Trish Stratus, Ashley Massaro and Mickie James in a 6-woman tag match. Mickie was pinned by Victoria when she turned her back on Victoria, ultimately a big mistake. The next week Victoria faced Mickie in single competition, which Mickie was able to win with the help of Trish Stratus.
Wrestlers managed by Victoria
Finishing and signature moves
- Widow's Peak (Gory driver)
- Black Widow (Sit-down inverted powerbomb)
- Spider's Web (swinging side slam)
- Diving moonsault
- Dancing standing moonsault
- Slingshot somersault legdrop
Championships and accomplishments
- Varon cites Ivory as a wrestler she was inspired by, and Torrie Wilson as being her best friend.
- Varon relocated to Louisville, Kentucky in order to train in Ohio Valley Wrestling, and continues to reside there. In June 2005 she opened a restaurant in Louisville named "Fat Tony's Pizza".
- From December 2002 to May 2004, Varon's entrance music was t.A.T.u's "All The Things She Said".
- In a January 2005 interview, she was quoted as confessing that she was legitimately jealous of the salary and opportunities given to diva search winner Christy Hemme. She later retracted and refuted this statement on her website, claiming that the reporter had twisted her words and that she and Hemme were friends.
- Solie's title histories
- Sunday Night Heat results archive (2002)
- Victoria at OWW.com
- Victoria comments on Christy Hemme again
- Victoria's secret
- ViciousVixen.com - the official website of Lisa Marie Varon
- WWE profile
- Template:Imdb name
- Victoria-Web.org (fan site)
- Lady-Victoria.net (fan site)