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Thread: Wwe's batman and joker

  1. #1
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    WWE's Batman and Joker


    I’ve been a fan of Cody Rhodes for a long time. I enjoyed him with Legacy; I enjoyed him as “Dashing” Cody Rhodes. When he had his face smashed by Mysterio and took a much darker tone with his character. To be quite frank, it was that change that gave/gives me the most hope for Cody. Rhodes successfully played himself off as mutilated and deranged because of his injuries. It changed the dynamic of what I came to expect from him. Prior to that Rhodes was an entertaining, but in some ways mundane grappler. I liked what I saw out of him, but it felt like there was a missing ingredient. Rhodes found it with that transition.

    He went on to become an interesting star as part of Team Rhodes Scholars, and then had a great face turn that looked like it was about to rocket him to the moon. As a thorn in the side of The Authority he made huge strides towards becoming a fan favorite. When he and his brother captured the tag titles from The Shield and “won their jobs” the roof nearly blew off of the building. From the breakup of Team Rhodes Scholars through his issue with The Authority he had really seemed to be on a massive face trajectory.

    Cody seemed like he was well on his way.

    Somewhere along the way what was expected to be a short-lived tag reign likely ending with Goldust turning on him to propel Cody into the babyface stratosphere went awry. Cody seemed to be the one on the verge of turning on his brother, something that belied the face behaviors he’d shown recently, and seemed to waste the excitement fans were beginning to feel for him as a good guy. It seemed like The Rhodes Brothers were about to break up and Cody would play the role of the heel. Then suddenly WWE took us for another twist, giving life back to a tag team that had been on the road to dissolution.

    In the form of Stardust Cody took on a different tone, he seemed crazy, and suddenly Goldust was the sane one. Many people saw this as a step down for him, and playing off of his brother’s legacy. I saw something different. When I saw it, that’s when I knew…THIS was the character that was going to propel him to the top of the card. While his earlier face pop went wasted by WWE as they tried to balance Bryan, Cena, and others at the top of the card; a new opportunity was emerging. Cody has shown a ton of range with this character. He’s taken the deranged element of the damaged “Dashing” Cody and flipped it in a way that fans many fans came to love the new twist on this character. But it was always building to the moment to come.

    Cody Rhodes is going to be the heel in this breakup, and given the current structure of WWE he’s needed as a heel. WWE is currently short on top level heel stars. He’s in the midst of the sinister turn on his own flesh and blood, and that’s when he’s going to truly shine. His insanity is going to shine, and he’s going to break the mold for what WWE has seen from its heels lately. We’ve seen Wyatt try to pry his way into the minds of his opponents. He’s always felt like he was on the controlled side of the razor’s edge between brilliance and madness. Cody on the other hand seems to be falling further and further into the depths of madness.

    He is a villain, demented, and looking to create chaos.


    Dean Ambrose is one of my favorite stars in the modern day WWE. He is a character that is completely off of his rocker, yet beloved.

    It wasn’t always that way.

    Ambrose has scratched and clawed and made people believe in him in a way many thought he was incapable of doing. As a member of The Shield he was initially loathed for his underhanded tactics. He and his mates routinely beat down the outnumbered and outclassed opposition. Ambrose seemed at home dominating his foes alongside one of the best groups in recent memory. The vigilantes, the hired guns that were The Shield would eventually become the henchmen for The Authority. They helped Hunter and Stephanie stay in power; run roughshod over the roster. Eventually the Hounds of Justice decided to live up to their namesake. They decided to go against those they had defended.

    Suddenly the term justice in their nickname actually meant something.

    They stood up for what was right.

    Dean had already captured The United States Championship. He held the title for 351 days. He and the other Hounds of Justice held onto that title, until The Authority took it away. When that happened Dean and his brethren did what they do best.

    They fought.

    At WrestleMania they destroyed the New Age Outlaws and Kane, they showed The Authority that they were better than anyone realized, completely obliterating and demoralizing three sure fire WWE Hall of Famers. His brothers fought Evolution in some of the best matches of the last few years in WWE. Each man shined in different ways, but the one that always stood out for me was Dean Ambrose. He was the man that was never expected to be the guy in the white hat. He was never meant to be the good guy. Their battles were remarkable, and Dean kept growing and growing in the face role that once felt so unnatural for him. He was the member of The Shield that most expected would be the catalyst for their eventual destruction. We all know how that worked out.

    In an unexpected plot twist Seth Rollins did the deed. Ambrose watched in horror as his “brother” struck his other “brother” with a chair. It was like everything he thought he knew changed in an instant. The only family he’d ever known was suddenly ripped from him. Ambrose had no idea how to react. He became a man possessed. He vowed to make Seth Rollins’ life a living hell and spent months living up to that promise.

    He swore retribution.

    He did his best to exact revenge on the man who destroyed his family. We felt his pain. We lived and died with his actions and inner agony. We cheered him as he fought the good fight against seemingly insurmountable odds. He impressed week after week. Redefining himself, his character, and becoming one of the most beloved characters in WWE. Dean took all of the things that we never expected him to do and did them. In the end though his is a character that is still a victim of tragedy he was neither prepared for nor equipped to deal with.

    He is the damaged hero.

    “I never thought I was a bad person. I just thought I was the one good person living in a world of bad people.” ~ Dean Ambrose

    The characters of both Cody and Dean had the option of giving into the madness and bad hands they’d been dealt; one seemingly is about to choose to go down a dark and lonely path, the other a path of shades of grey but with good and light at heart. Both men had their lives turned upside down by The Authority. They are tied together by that bond. They are victims. Oddly they’ve taken paths that seem to be the inverse of one another. The Shield played the role of heel as The Rhodes Brothers tried to overcome The Authority.

    Over time they have walked a path that led each to where they are now. Cody, Stardust, is on the precipice of a new adventure. First a collision course with his brother, and then what next?

    Ambrose is headed on towards Bad News Barrett and the Intercontinental Championship. The IC Title seems the right destination for Dean. A feud with Barrett does not. Wade is a brilliant grappler and entertainer in his own right, but he is not a good foil for a character like Ambrose.

    Give Dean the Intercontinental Championship at WrestleMania. Let Cody conquer his brother. Then the time comes for them to cross paths. Let’s not forget that Cody is the one who brought the classic Intercontinental Championship design back. That belt is HIS. Let him come for his prize…and let the fireworks begin.

    If the aforementioned Wyatt represents an amalgamation of Batman villains The Riddler, and The Scarecrow, constantly puzzling while preying on the inner fears of his opposition; I truly believe that Stardust is able to take on the role of the most famous of all villains in the Batman universe, The Joker. I’ve watched many of his mannerisms, many of his actions, and in my mind I always harken back to the performance of Heath Ledger as The Joker. It was a spectacular performance. It was far more nuanced and true to the deep insanity, violence and desire for anarchy of The Joker than Jack Nicholson’s take on the character. Cody is a big comic book fan, and I wonder if his take on his own character is intentionally modeled after The Joker. In Stardust Cody has created a man bordering on villain that seems to have teetered over the edge and is quickly falling into the depths of madness. His rants about stars, constellations etc. were cute and quirky at first. Lately however the character has taken on a more sinister and brooding tone.

    The Clown Prince of Crime is the most diabolical and deadly of all of Batman’s foes. He is the yin to The Dark Knight’s yang. The Joker is what Batman might have been had he given in more completely to his rage.

    They are polar opposites, yet couldn’t be any more similar. They complement one another.

    Each is beautifully and fatally flawed, shattered, and irreparably damaged.

    There have been no more perfect foes in all of comic history than The Joker and Batman.

    Cody Rhodes is a broken man. The results are that is about to lay waste to his family. Lunacy and chaos are seemingly his sole motivations. He is The Joker. He is Stardust.

    Dean Ambrose is a broken man. He watched his family be destroyed. Revenge is his defining characteristic, but he is so much more layered and intriguing than that lone factor. He has taken matters into his own hands, unable to trust that things can be rectified any other way. He is The Batman. He is the Lunatic Fringe.

    I see so much potential in both. Dean Ambrose has shown that he is capable of playing any role put in front of him, currently he plays the hero, and does so with a natural aplomb that makes the fans adore him. Cody Rhodes has shown that same versatility and chameleon-like nature in his career. No matter what he’s been fed he’s found a way to make it work. In my mind Stardust is to be his masterpiece.

    No great villain can thrive without a hero.

    No great hero can prosper without a villain.

    If WWE plays their cards right they’ll find that they have just waiting for the other.

    Seems Cody Has Thought About This For Awhile
    Last edited by rayhagan1; 02-16-2015 at 11:01 AM. Reason: Lack of caps in title hopefully figured out.
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  2. #2
    Senior Member American Mikey P's Avatar
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    Jesus man you have been a machine haha, where do you find the time to bang out solid piece after solid piece?

    I personally think the stardust gimmick has been a TOTAL bust as of now. I was there live for MITB, their match was a popcorn match at the PPV. I gave up on that whole schtick early fall, its not connecting with the fans (basing it off the absolute silence of the crowd) and certainly not with me. I tend to fast forward his segments now because I refuse to watch TV that is not entertaining so I really can't comment on his current work...if its leading to a Joker psyche type character that could be VERY cool. Ill make sure not to fast forward through his segment this week and see if if its something I can get into.

  3. #3
    Main Pager Maverick's Avatar
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    Hipsterville-By-Sea, United Kingdom
    I'm going to start here with the ludicrous lack of capitalisation in the title, and again, the lack of branding. Come on man, you're better than that. When it comes to the content, indeed, the concept, I find the Batman analogies so cliched by now... EVERYBODY seems to have written a column about who is Batman and who is The Joker by now. I just felt this was another example of you trying to keep up the pace with writing columns when you might have been better saving your energy for when a better idea came along. As for the writing, beware all those portentous short sentences and one line paragraphs. They work well only when used sparingly.

    Also, if Stardust takes Cody to the main event, I will get on a plane to the States and buy you a beer. Or six. Because that gimmick is more likely to see him future endeavoured than in the #MainEventPush territory.
    Last edited by Maverick; 02-14-2015 at 05:08 AM.

  4. #4
    Samuel Plan
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    Dec 2014
    Well you've come on leaps and bounds ray. What's interesting is just yesterday I was reading back some of my oldest work that I wrote around a year into my stint here - 2009 - and you're in a very similar place. Just like me back then, you have a good, strong idea but you're still rough round the edges as a writer and, just like I so often did, get a little carried away. I know from experience that it's too easy to think that something reads as dramatic when, in fact, it's cringe-inducingly melodramatic. Parts of your column here, and others, are like that. The good thing is this gets ironed out with experience and making mistakes. Your output is consistent, which is good, and so long as you learn from whenever you stumble, you'll grow as I did into becoming a very good writer. Be under no mistake; there were stumbles here.

    Your idea is an interesting one, if one I remain wholly unconvinced by. Great topic though that not many people are writing about; your originality is improving and that's a great thing to see. Mav is right in saying a lot of people do the Batman thing, including me of course, but to apply it to Stardust and Ambrose I thought was actually rather fresh. You're at your best covering topics nobody else is. There were a couple of errors in there, but overall your proofing is great. However, there was absolutely no need to have Stardust's name in purple. Gimmicks like that are found only among the (relatively) newer writers. Also, here and in other pieces, I can tell you're a huge fan of using a single line break to create emphasis. That's fine. I do it. It's a great tool. But you use it too much and it hurts your discourse and, frankly, gets annoying. You used it 14 times in this one column alone. 14. Dude, that's just too much. Emphasise eveything and nothing has emphasis. If you didn't do it for emphasis, you need to tighten up your paragraphing.

    My third gripe is your foray into Ambrose. Technically speaking, counting the six single lines, you wrote twelve paragraphs on the dude. I get the story here was about picking a Batman and Joker, but eveyone knows the story of Ambrose my man. Simply reeferring to it in passing, then utilising your fifth to last paragraph on him would have helped you immensely, because covering such well trodden ground can lead to work feeling cyclical. (By the way, note how you doubled your paragraph count alone in the pursuit of emphasis that wasn't needed. Always remember, less is more.)

    You've made good progress ray. Time to start ironing out these more specific chinks in your game though if you want to take it to the next level.

    Now, content. I find Stardust to be a little misguided to be honest. I thought what really hurt Cody when he was hitting his peak was being suffocated by his brother who, despite still being able to go, had no right to come in and seize the spotlight like that. (By the way, winning the belts and their jobs back were two different matches. It came off as if you thought it was the same one.) Of course it's a two way street; Cody shouldn't have let himself be overshadowed so easily. I do think it would have helped to have them kept as singles guys though, willing to just watch one another's backs. A face team version of those old, loosely affiliated stables like the Heenan Family. I don't see great longevity in Stardust because Cody overcooks it. It's not quirky or strange like Goldust; it's pantomime. They could go down the deranged route. I did enjoy Broken Dashing. I don't know. I was so excited for Cody in the last half of 2013 but now it pains me to say Mazza, who was on the verge of being very, very wrong, is looking to be very, very right. I doubt Cody will ever get to that main event. That's ok, of course, but a damn shame.
    101 WWE Matches To See Before You Die: The Book is now available to buy on Amazon UK, Amazon US and Amazon Europe! Just search for "101 WWE Matches" and it'll pop up!

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  5. #5
    Hey Ray!

    I won't critique the writing style and the paragraph spacing and the concepts, I'll leave that to the veterans to do.

    For me, I really enjoyed this piece because you entwined three (four) of my favorite things into one well-explained article. Dean, Cody, Batman, (and Wyatt.)

    I wish I could believe you, though. I really wish I could believe that this is the time that Cody will shine, that he'll take this schism and ride the Mankind train all the way to main event maniac. My fear is that the main event is already overcrowded with maniacs- the aforementioned Ambrose and Wyatt are both vying for that spot, and both fairly more likely candidates than Rhodes. I don't expect WWE will have room for more than one or two top-level insane characters, no matter how differently they're each doing it at this point in time.

    The idea of Cody and Ambrose in a battle of nutcases does excite me actually, and weirdly it's something I hadn't considered before. I think I've spent too long seeing Stardust as a midcard tag team guy that the prospect of pairing him with some of the other upper-midcarders in singles feuds just hasn't occured before. I've loved Cody from day one (when he inducted Dusty into the HOF, I said "That kid's got a good luck, he should become a wrestler!" only to find out that he was just about to) so I thoroughly hope Stardust or Cody come out of this Goldust feud looking awesome- I'm just skeptical at the moment. Sign me up for Batman vs. Joker vs. Scarecrow though, cos I can't think of much that WWE could put on that would be more compelling than that!

    Despite what the critics say (;D), I enjoyed this Ray, nice work- perhaps it helps that this is the first Batman/Joker column I've read!

  6. #6
    Wrestling fans and comic fans seem to be fairly synonymous, so the Batman/Joker thing is fairly overdone. Nonetheless, it's always possible to make a over utilized topic your own. If you have an idea you like, don't give up on it just because others have talked about it ad nauseum. Just make sure you do all you can to put your own twist on it. We're here to read you. Make it yours.

    Stardust is an interesting concept. There's something seriously messed up with those Rhodes's. I do appreciate the story telling in that Dustin effectively went crazy trying to live in his dad's shadow and turned into Goldust, and now, almost 2 decades later, Cody's done the same thanks to Goldust's resurgence. Little details like that would be nice to be mentioned, but it's still interesting. Nonetheless, Stardust has to do more than lose himself in the gimmick to make it work. Goldust did everything possible that could be done in the gimmick, so Cody has to do something so drastically different in a much stricter climate. Odds are, he won't make it to the top of the card in this iteration. Cody Rhodes as a talent is top of the card worthy. He's just got to find something that clicks with him, the fans, and the WWE brass. It's not Stardust.

    I love Ambrose. In fact, he might just be my favorite performer currently on the main roster. But I have no motivation to see him and Stardust feud. At all.

    You have talent and a clear ability to expound on an idea. I think it could be more polished, more concise, and definitely more you. And please, always capitalize the title. It's a pet peeve of many around here.

    Good work.

  7. #7
    The Underage Pessimist Subho's Avatar
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    Kolkata, India
    I enjoyed this, Ray! The connection is a cliched one, but I agree with 'Plan that most wouldn't have seen this one coming. Ambrose as Batman was really interesting, but I think that you could've also expounded on the idea to him being The Joker as he has always been likened to Heath Ledger. He uses many of his mannerisms, and that's something you could've taken up as well.

    You know I'm a Cody Rhodes guy, and I love Stardust as well. This has a lot of potential, but I wonder if WWE thinks his ceiling isn't that high. In his past iterations, Cody has proven that he can succeed at any role given to him. And that should've dictated a better career path for him. It hasn't happened, and he has found himself wandering aimlessly on all occasions. I still don't see him as World Champ any time soon, but I'd definitely love that if it happens.

    Some room for improvement here, Ray, but nothing that can't be ironed out with time. The purple-ing of Stardust's name was a bit jarring, especially when you used it so many times in the same paragraph. And I agree with the missed capitalization of the title as well. This was a good topic, and you handled it well, but you could've explained it better and maybe add more facets. Still strong, though, and you're generally writing really well and consistently at that!

  8. #8
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    Mikey: Thanks for the compliment pal. I agree that to this point the gimmick hasn't done much for him. I do think that it's laid the groundwork for something greater, whether WWE actually capitalizes on that is something different all together. I think that fans liked it at first, and then it quickly lost steam. I guess we'll see what comes next for him, I hold out hope that with the proper effort this character could be something awesome. If you're going to start watching him, I hope you're rewarded.

    Mav: Thanks for chiming in pal, we discussed the branding aspect, and the caps I'll cover with Rey Ca$h. Appreciate the sentiments regarding the Batman/Joker thing being overdone. It has been done often, but to me I'm not going to let other people tackling a subject keep me from doing it, particularly when I think I can bring a fresh take on it. Hell, look at the number of Batman movies, different takes on the same subject matter received to varying levels of success. I will freely admit that there is a portion of me trying to keep pace with producing new work. I've heeded your advice in the past regarding releasing fewer columns, for me I didn't feel like it much improved my offerings. What I actually found was that when I got away from writing frequently it became easier not to write at all, which is something I also don't want to do. There's a ton of merit to what you say, and I do consider each bit of advice I'm given, particularly from you and 'Plan, and it's much appreciated.

    Plan: As Mav stated, and you expounded on there were FAR too many single line paragraphs. It was odd, because during the editing process it never occurred to me, but as soon as both of you mentioned that, it jumped right off of the screen at me. That will definitely be something I'm more mindful of in the future. "Emphasise everything and nothing has emphasis." will be something that sticks in my head in each column I write going forward. I appreciate that you thought this was a unique take on frequently walked ground. I've felt The Joker connection to Stardust since his debut. I don't remember if I touched on it here or as a comment on the main page, but I've longed for a heel version of the character to see where he could take it for a long time. I think in my head that the jobs/titles had blended together so I did write it that way, the correction is appreciated. Cody's momentum has gone to hell since he teamed with his brother, I hope that this gets him back on the right track. Regarding the Purple, I thought it would add some emphasis to the character, and also tie it further to The Joker comparison given that purple is his color. Apparently that one missed the mark. I don't usually go for colors, and perhaps this is why. Thanks 'Plan.

    Gav: Thanks for chiming in pal, I'm glad you enjoyed! I do have concerns that Stardust will be viewed poorly because of his time in the tandem, and his affiliation with his brother. I'm a believer in Cody though, I always have been. I like to think that after he puts his brother in the rear view that he'll be able to move forward and really make an impression with this character. Time will tell, but I'm hopeful!

    Rey: You may be right that Stardust is not what ends up clicking with the WWE universe. But you yourself said that there's a lot of crossover between wrestling and comic book fans. Comic fans LOVE The Joker. If WWE and Cody can create a character that reminds people of him then I believe they can build a connection with the character. They may miss the mark entirely, that's an unfortunate possibility and perhaps likelihood. I agree that Cody is laden with talent and can be a main event player. Perhaps you don't have the motivation to see Ambrose and Stardust feud because you don't like the current iteration of the Stardust character? If they can create something worthwhile and interesting with him, I hold out hope that Cody will make it work. Fingers crossed. As for capitalizing the title, I shot Mav a PM about that. I absolutely 100% agree, and DID capitalize the title. It came out the way you see it now, but I went back in and edited it through the advanced settings, and still had this happen. I tried a couple more times only to find that nothing changed and gave up. In retrospect I'm wondering if it's because I attempted to present it in all caps? (EDIT: That was exactly the reason, problem solved) This will definitely be something I'm on the lookout for going forward. Thanks for reading!

    Sub: See above regarding capitalization. Good point on Ambrose and Ledger's Joker, oddly I'd never heard that before (at least to my recollection) nor had I considered it. If I had, I likely would have touched on that as well. Thanks for the compliments and advice pal, much appreciated!
    Last edited by rayhagan1; 02-16-2015 at 11:02 AM. Reason: SEE EDIT
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  9. #9
    Main Pager Maverick's Avatar
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    Hello mate, just remembered, if you type a title in all caps, it'll change it all to lower case.

    When I was speaking of capitalisation, I actually meant in the traditional sense of a capital starting each word of the title (I think Rey meant the same) so maybe just go with that and go full caps on your brand title in the column itself.

  10. #10
    Senior Member
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    Mar 2014
    Thanks Mav, that's what I usually had done in the past which is probably why I never had this problem before. That's what I was running into. Usually I do just capitalize the first letter of each word, but I think I brain cramped on the last two and it led to this. In the future I'll be sure to do it that way. I realized that right around the time you posted this, and I can't believe it didn't occur to me before that. Thanks!
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