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Thread: Button Up: The Failure of Roman Reigns

  1. #1

    Button Up: The Failure of Roman Reigns

    Button Up

    The Failure of Roman Reigns: The story of a man who never was.


    Fast forward to the night the Undertaker has been speared and pinned. That dog, Romanís tongue salivates out his mouth while his pink dick rolls out like lipstick, and he then, urinates all over the trees, and the grass, and most importantly the WWE audience, because itís his yard. But is it? Or will it be? Because, he beats Taker, will we believe in him? And what exactly does believing in him mean? By doing this, do we believe in a hero or a villain? Wait, heís not a bad guy. Heís not a good guy. Heís just the guy. But who is the guy if we have nothing to buy into. Heís not the guy, at all. I will argue that he is just a guy.

    Again, I ask who Roman is. Hulk Hogan waved the American flag during the height of the cold war. Yeah, he was Americanaó and Steve Austinóhe was every man on the clock that desired freedom from his boss and the daily grind. Heís every man who wanted to stun the man and sing, ďfree man in the morning!Ē? In the 60ís and 70ís the guy was a strong Italian immigrant in New York City, where the statue of liberty raised her torch. In the 80ís when WWE went national it was an All American. And Daniel Bryan may not have been their guy, but he was our guy, because he stood in the place of the underdog and flipped the scrip that the gods wrote against him.

    Jesus was love and the Dahlia-Lama peace: Mother Teresa, charity. Daniel Bryan didnít get over against the will of the WWE, because the net wanted to rebel. And if he did, he did it by becoming an idea that made fans rebel. He became the work-horse in a fixed horse-race. Before the WWE chastises its audience for looking anywhere outside their anointed, before we turn on each other, letís ask what idea has the machine given to their chosen? Daniel Bryan against the machine made the ďYesĒ chant and movement with all the energy that made him breathe. What energy has the WWE put into this idea that is Reigns. And Reigns is exactly what idea? Best I can tell he's big, strong, mediocre, and chosen and we should just buy it.

    WWE blames the internet age, citing they will not accept who the company wants to push. Loyal WWE fans blame other fans. But this phenomenon of Roman Reigns hate does not end in the digital world. He is rejected by the people he walks through to get to the ring, week after week, and itís everybody in the crowdís fault except his? If Iím buying a dog, I want to know about it, and the most expensive ones are presented with information about the breed and the personality. WWE simply unleashed a pissing mutt and blames us for not liking it.

    Truly, Reigns best time was as a hound of justice. In this, you may have your best refute. Still, I argue a hound of justice? What does that mean? Did they bring justice by putting baby-faces through tables and helping heels win? Dear reader, please do not doubt my sense and respect for irony and how smart it can be. But when you are selling a product irony is all but smart. Can you imagine if Master Cardís slogan was a sarcastic ďdonít go into debt.Ē What if the Shield had gone all the way with something instead of hiding in the grey shadows. What if they had been the hounds of anarchy or violence or anything that they backed up with their actions? While the Shield did make six man tag wrestling great again, WWE at its best is foreplay. It will lick your neck and back but never your pussy and crack.

    Apple means think different! Nike means just do it! Bounty is the quicker picker upper. Ric Flair was the 60 minute man, the jet flying limousine riding son of a gun. HBK was the show-stopper who had the best match every show. Roman Reigns is the big dog. Heís the guy. Neither of which says anything you want to fucking cheer for and get behind. A superstar becomes larger than life when they become an idea we endear.

    Here we have a sub-par wrestler, a poor talker, and a man who represents nothing and when he super manís and pisses on everything in his path, it's the fans fault that they close their mouths to the stream. WWE hates the reaction to Roman, because fans are rejecting their marketing, their writing, and their judgement. Until they put these things to brilliance, I don't care if he beats Taker and Lesnar. I don't give a shit if the guy digs Yoko and Andre out of their respective graves and slams their fat asses. I need to know who the guy doing this is and what he represents.

    How dare their constituents ask for more!

    Ya, irony.
    Last edited by Benjamin Button; 03-20-2017 at 10:46 PM.

  2. #2
    The Brain
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    I love that point about the Shield, who never were well defined in any way despite their popularity. First they were supposed to be, what, shadow minions of CM Punk, but that didn't pan out, then they wanted "justice" but just beat people up, then they worked for Triple H sort of until they didn't, then random feuds, then they almost broke up but somehow became good guys, now they don't like Triple H anymore because...? And then they broke up just when they were winning all their matches. They were super fun, but they didn't mean anything, and yeah, I gotta agree that Reigns has carried that aspect into his singles career along with the look and music of his former group. I don't hate Reigns like some, but I sure don't find him very interesting.

    I expected there to be more buttholes in this, but I'm glad you at least slipped in a dog dick.

  3. #3
    Weed General D.O.N's Avatar
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    I love that line about Daniel being a work-horse in a fixed horse race. That sentiment really holds true. And it was us fans who changed that fixed race to a fair one.

    I have to agree with you that WWE hasn't given us any reason to care for Roman Reigns. Its like his just there, and entitled. However, blame has to be put on the creative team for portraying him as such. Just by going, "hey Roman is the next John Cena" is just not good enough. If WWE really wants us to find our own meaning behind the Roman Reigns character then I will just go with the notion that he doesn't give a shit about anyone and all he is in WWE for is the success that he can achieve. Oh, and Reigns is not a mediocre wrestler. At worst he is above average.

  4. #4
    The trouble with making Reigns the next John Cena is that John Cena wasn't the next anything. He was the first John Cena. Hogan was the first Hogan, Austin was the first Austin, HBK was the first HBK.

    Reigns needs to be Reigns. The trouble is exactly what you say - being Reigns doesn't mean anything at this point.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Oliver's Avatar
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    In all honesty, Reigns' character - or lack thereof - has almost always been his downfall, especially whilst facing down a main event push. But, then again, there's a lot of vaguely characterless and undefined wrestlers in WWE right now without a good storyline hook I suppose, and that's been the way for far too long. We're certainly a long way from JR doing sit down interviews with Mick Foley to help get him over, let's put it that way. WWE is far too often in 'tell, don't show' mode and really we need them to shift to 'show, don't tell'.

    I think the only person who has any character consistency right now is Kevin Owens, the guy who has so many issues with intimacy he turns his back on anybody that gets close to him. He doubts himself and constantly needs to validate himself at every turn. Whether it's intentional or not, I don't know, but Owens is killing it as a character right now.

  6. #6
    What else is on? JSR-13's Avatar
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    WWE simply unleashed a pissing mutt and blames us for not liking it.
    A superstar becomes larger than life when they become an idea we endear.
    I need to know who the guy doing this is and what he represents.

    How dare their constituents ask for more!
    If you just so happen to be holding a mic, please proceed to drop it.
    Don't Touch That Dial!



  7. #7
    Miz,
    I don't hate him either. Just hate what they've done with him. And I don't see that much in him for the push he has received.

    D.O.N,
    I see him as an average wrestler, personally. His best matches seem to be when someone else is bumping like hell for him. There's nothing wrong with that, but he needs to excel in another area.


    Dynamite
    You're damn right. He has to be his own man. If he's going to be the man hopefully he finds something appealing.


    Oliver
    So true about Owens.

    JSR
    Cheers.

  8. #8
    Well, you just chopped the legs off my "Why I hate Roman Reigns" column, so congrats!

    I'm actually glad so I don't have to put in the effort. You really dove into the character issue, which is a lot of people's #1 problem with him, and I agree. It's really unfortunate how bad the main roster's writing team is at actually defining characters. They even take people with pre-packaged characters that are proven to work(KO, Bayley, Sasha) and fuck THEM up.

    Tito constantly rags on Roman's conditioning and I agree, dude can't wrestle a consistent 20 minute match. Even peak Rock could do that.

    Here are a few other thoughts from my now-deceased column:

    Roman Reigns is not a great wrestler. Imp and I have talked about this on the radio show, but there are two types of wrestlers. The first type are technical wrestlers. Guys like Daniel Bryan, Seth Rollins, AJ Styles, and Bobby Roode. Who know every hold, every suplex, every reversal, and can string together a good, consistent 20 minute match with anyone. Then there are the entertainment wrestlers. The Rock is my favorite example. He didn't have every move in the book but he made you forget that with charisma and storytelling ability. Some guys straddle the line, like The Undertaker, who have large arsenals but their character doesn't need it.

    Roman is clearly in the second category, but even in that category is he better than someone like Braun Strowman? Neither is going to chain wrestle for 10 minutes, but Braun just put on an AWESOME match with the fucking Big Show. In 2017. A match that was better than anything Roman has ever done solo, in my opinion. So even as an entertainment wrestler he's far from the best in WWE.

    Roman is a glad-handing, nonsensical yes man. To paraphrase the voice of the voiceless. All of these problems that we talk about with Roman? The super-Cena imitation, the complete lack of character, the leash that is put on him(apparently people who meet him in real life say he's charming and charismatic); do you think The Rock would allow that shit to happen to him for YEARS? Stone Cold? Absolutely not. They actively took ownership of their character and career and worked with Vince and creative to fix what was wrong. But Roman? He's said many times that he's there to rake in money to feed his family. He's the real life NXT Kevin Owens, which was a great character! Except he won't fight to change his shitty character, and that, I put 100% on his own shoulders. You're written poorly for years? Do something about it or else you own it.

    ...dammit Cesaro!

  9. #9
    Protector of the Oomph
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    This might be my favorite column in March. It says a lot of what I'd like to say but does it in a logical manner, whereas I would get way in my feels trying to go in on this.

    Some favorite lines:

    "he then, urinates...most importantly [on] the WWE audience"

    and

    "He’s not the guy, at all. I will argue that he is just a guy."

    and

    All the comparisons of the guys who are some-thing and are not Roman Reigns.

    and

    WWE blames the internet age, citing they will not accept who the company wants to push. Loyal WWE fans blame other fans.

    and

    He is rejected by the people he walks through to get to the ring, week after week, and it’s everybody in the crowd’s fault except his?

    and

    WWE simply unleashed a pissing mutt and blames us for not liking it.

    and

    Here we have a sub-par wrestler, a poor talker, and a man who represents nothing and when he super man’s and pisses on everything in his path, it's the fans fault that they close their mouths to the stream.

    ...

    Nothing is more absurd to me than fans putting the burden on others fans, instead of the writing and talent. I can't count the times I saw the many tweets about how much better Reigns has become, how he is now the best, now deserving, only to watch a PPV where he gets NO REACTION. And fans tell fans not to watch or to buy in, as if this is just a matter of being stubborn. (What fan is truly saying, "I know I could have a better time if I let myself like him but by god it's fun to be cross!") Fact is he brings little to nothing to the table. He is not horrible in the ring, but he's not what some would like him to be. As a personality and promo, he is less than bad. He is not neutral. He absorbs and eliminates energy from a building (or a living room) and he never gives it back. He is not over, but he is overrated. There are many who are better than him. He has not earned his spot. He is a portrait, not of the stubborn ways of the fans, but of the stubborn ways of the WWE. He is also a WWE loyalists dream, I've come to believe, because they want to feel like they are cozy with WWE, in its bosom, fighting a battle on their behalf. Roman Reigns is that battle. It is a losing battle that will never be a losing battle, because WWE gets to write the script. The Self Destruction of the Ultimate Warrior until they love the Warrior is the blaming of the fans as long as they want to push Roman. He can fuck off though. I barely watch him. I check in every six months or so to see if he's doing better. Same guy who looks like a deer in the headlights. Just wish someone would run him over already.

  10. #10
    Burn1n: Let me reply to the second part concerning Roman just along for the ride. It's a great point. And he has much less incentive than the Rock and Austin. He's won multiple world titles and is on his way to beating the Taker and another Wrestle-Mania main event next year without anywhere near the creativity put in the Austin and Rock characters. Had Austin and the Rock not developed they would not have main evented. The company spins around Roman without his character developing. Because prvious generations enjoyed Hogan and Austin kicking ass, they think all Roman needs to do is kick ass to get over. This started with his 2015 Rumble win and remember the reaction? See fans want to see the ass kicking after the person gets over.

    Shane: Let me respond to this, "The Self Destruction of the Ultimate Warrior until they love the Warrior is the blaming of the fans as long as they want to push Roman."

    I've heard the WWE say someone can't be held down if they get themselves over. It feels like the direction change at the 2015 Rumble and since has shot more holes in that than a pedestrian in the south-side of Chicago. I've heard people bash non-wrestling writers. I'm disappointed that they have these teams, and they don't just lack wrestling creativity, sometimes they seem to lack creativity altogether. I've learned to praise their mediocre feats like Bray Wyatt finally now doing something with his character. But I don't think Roman's push reaches mediocre writing.
    Last edited by Benjamin Button; 03-25-2017 at 01:58 AM.

  11. #11
    Senior Member JacobWrestledGod's Avatar
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    The thing about Roman is that WWE seems to know that he is hated by the crowd, and is determined to go against the grain and continue to push him in this direction. He is manufactured, quite like Cena was, into the same role to take over Cena when Cena retires. The sad thing is Reigns is nowhere near as charismatic as Cena outside the ring (in the ring, Reigns is improving every minute sans the booking of superman recoveries). Cena is a once a lifetime wrestler that gets coverage outside the ring because he can talk, is a role model and been charitable enough to gain lots of brownie points with fans. Reigns is far from having the same reputation, in fact, he comes off as harsh and did mentioned how money is one of his main motivating factors in wrestling. Not that money isn't good, but to admit it publicly shows the moral pillar which Reigns subscribe to compared to Cena. So I have to say that Reigns should be a heel. Not the prototype Cena WWE Sim for, but rather how NJPW treated Natio, making him a million bucks as a heel who regards fans as people who gets in his way to stardom.

    Right now, both Raw and Smackdown are devoid of top face wrestlers. Even Randy is more of an anti hero than anything else. I can see why WWE is reluctant to turn Reigns, so hopefully the opportunity comes for Reigns to turn and take the top heel spot in the near future.

    One thing to comment on your choice of phases. You write in sound bites which are catchy (as JSR13 quoted) but I think some phases, for example, the one on Dalai Lama and Jesus and Mother Theresa seems superfluous because I tired very hard to see the connection and saw none, though the line seems super quotable. Continue to write because you do have some great lines through out but I hope you can note that the lines need to be meaningful in order to be impactful.

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