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flyonthewall2983

Is the empire crumbling before our eyes?

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BTW, I referred to Christophe Agius's show/podcast before, so here's this interesting tidbit about Roman Reigns vs Brock Lesnar at WM34 that he told (he was announcing live from the stadium that year). I have no idea if it has been mentioned before (and if it has been, then it's only a confirmation), but if you believe Agius, and I absolutely believe in his honesty, basically Roman was supposed to beat Lesnar. How he knows this is because after the match and as the show ended, as he was thanking the crew as they always do, he saw that Tom Carlucci, who had been in the company for ever as an high end official and was a friend of McMahon's family (was invited into the house and such) and who was managing the entire foreign announcers crew, was totally shocked by the result. Carlucci told him that Roman was 100% supposed to win and that it had to be an audible during the match. So there.

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Fans wanted Roman. Roman was the most over guy in The Shield, he was the most over guy when they broke up, and fans were completely into him until Bryan came back. At that point, the decade of training the audience to resent and boo the top face was so engrained that almost nothing could stop that momentum. However, just like with Cena, even at the height of crowds being against him, they'd always pop when he'd get a segment where he just wrecks shop and looks like a bad ass. 

 

WWE has been garbage as a company keeping positive momentum for anyone for about 20 years now so. They're really good at getting someone super hot and then seemingly losing all interest in doing shit with them or going the worst direction possible and making people get sick of it. 

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Yeah, the constant undercutting was what fucked Roman's chances of ever being a "babyface Ace".

It's true that Cena is unique in working around the backlash to a push, specially in the context of WWE doing the worst job possible at booking a babyface champ, but even he wasn't undercut as Roman was. John got the current heel Reigns push as soon as he got his first WWE title. Roman had to wait 6 years to get it :lol: . It's pretty crazy. Vince really fucked up in always wanting to punt Roman's moment to coincide with Wrestlemania, so any time he could've gained momentum, he was brought back, jobbed and cooled off until Mania season, at which point fans knew what was up and would reject the idea.

What's interesting is that I associate being done with WWE to Rollins and Owens big main event runs and not the "dread" of Roman waiting in the corner during those times (to get his coronation at Mania).

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The idea that people only booed Roman because it was the "thing" to do after years of Cena is interesting but really doesn't hold up to the facts. Do you really think that when Daniel Bryan got over AF, they would have booed *him* if WWE had pushed him to the moon ? No way. Hell, it did not happen when they finally gave in. Also, as much as Cena got shit for years, mainly from the male audience, he was indeed cheered by the kids and the female audience and also was about a thousand times better dealing with it than Roman ever was. The thing is, Cena was the tree that hid the forest. WWE's decline (not financial, but finances have nothing to do with the actual product at this point, at least as long as the brand is what it is) did not begin in the mid 10's. It was a long, slow road that only now begins to rear its ugly head because there is an actual opposition (I mean, two years, it took two years for AEW to get actually competitive ? How in the hell does that even happens ?). If they did not stumble onto Cena, the decline would have been much quicker.

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Post Shield break up I think Ambrose was the most over for awhile at least. Listen to the reactions he's getting summer 2014.   Roman also went down with the sports hernia around that time.

also, like always, we wouldn't have had these conversations the last 7 years if wwe simply delayed Bryan's return in early 2015

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I'd argue Ambrose was by far the most over of the SHIELD guys in WWE. The reactions he would get from 2014-early 2016 were insane, and I can only remember him being booed as a babyface once (his match with AJ Styles at Backlash 2016)

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Roman was the guy the fans were behind in 2014. He was over huge at the Rumble when he set a record for eliminations and was the last man standing in the way of Batista's coronation. And at the end of the year, he won Superstar of the Year in a legitimate fan vote despite having been off TV the previous few months. The backlash didn't begin until the 2015 Rumble where he won and Bryan was treated as a complete afterthought. The fans supported him when he clashed with the hand-picked would-be corporate champion, but he became the avatar of fan resentment when he assumed that role himself. That's the inherent contradiction with modern WWE. On the one hand, they have to be in control of everything so nothing is allowed to get over organically. On the other hand, they've presented themselves to the fanbase as the heel for so long that being seen as the company pick inevitably invites a backlash.

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Roman had the sports hernia in Sept. 2014 and didn't return to late December that year. I assume he would have had Dolph's spot as the sole survivor at the Survivor Series that year.

Post Shield break I think Ambrose was more over with the live crowds but Roman was way over as well before the hernia

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Yeah I think both Ambrose and Reigns were really over and either would have worked with the right booking. Again, even without postponing Bryan's return and fucking up in Philly, they could have still saved everything with a strong Mania title win and a strong title run. For starters, Bryan was about to get injured soon, so there would have been understanding, if not acceptance. I don't know how paradoxical this sounds, but I think Roman would have felt much much less pushed down the throat if he actually had a long run where he was beating everybody. Yes, a certain section of fans would have still said that about him, like they had with Cena, but for most of the less hardcore fans, he would have earned the top spot. It wouldn't have felt like someone who would randomly be shoehorned into main events cuz it was time to try and crown him yet again. Instead, they went with the one member of the Shield who was not over on that level, while Roman IIRC went to feuding with Bray Wyatt after old man Taker pretty much squashed him.

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Worst part is that Roman didn't even go straight to Wyatt. He feuded with Big Show before that (granted, that LMS was pretty fucking good regardless, but Big Show in 2015 was at his lowest), and only in the MitB moved to the Bray feud. 

Even then, though, the fans were losing their shit during his matches. They would start talking shit but by the end were chanting how awesome the match was lol

That HiaC ranks reeeaaaaally high in the list of best Wyatt matches. It's IMO the best match Bray has had.

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The fans' backlash against Roman can be summarized in two key moments.

1. Rumble '15. Bryan was the obvious fan favorite, we've all said this, blah blah blah. But, more egregiously...

2. "Sufferin' succotash." That one moment became such a meme that exemplified to the fanbase that Roman wouldn't be the conquering bad MF that they wanted but just another goody two-shoes like Cena.

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You'd think that but I was really surprised by how little hard camera there was on Smackdown and Raw. Way more swooshing, shaking, zoomy cam (very technical terms) than when I last watched. Then again, they probably still teach trainees to work the hard cam and then opt not to use one

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I love that they apparently have to spend so much time teaching people all the weird WWE bullshit they don't have enough time to teach them how to actually wrestle.

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How is it conceivable that they actually allowed someone to ask that question to Sonya, considering what happened last year?

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33 minutes ago, SirEdger said:

How is it conceivable that they actually allowed someone to ask that question to Sonya, considering what happened last year?

Holy shit, it looked like everyone realized halfway through that segment what a horrible idea it was for everyone involved. 

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The amount of awkwardness, between the guy on the left looking totally uncomfortable, the girl shouting an untimely and totally forced 'woo!' and the host looking like he realized he fucked up big time :lol:.

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The gradual "are we really going to fucking do this?" look descending across Sonya's face was something. 

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4 hours ago, NintendoLogic said:

Man, them screwing up Mojo is one of the things that bummed me out the most. Dude is so fucking likeable and can talk. Plus he had size and agility, how could you have someone with his tools and do nothing?

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