I struggled with the topic of Roman Reigns as he was someone I covered in a previous post. However, as the last few weeks watching, Monday Night Raw has proven it needs to be rediscussed.
The article that I previously wrote covering this topic is https://laracuenteledger.com/2018/02/27/how-predictability-can-spawn-change/
Roman Reigns has obviously been deemed by Mr. McMahon as John Cena‘s successor as the “Golden Goose.” It is evident to anyone who watches the WWE. The same disdain that we in the “WWE Universe” had for John Cena for so long has now transferred to Reigns. And it may actually even be worse for Roman Reigns. Roman is someone that draws a reaction, just not the response that Mr. McMahon wants. For Cena, the reaction was the same, women and children love him, and men hate him.
Let’s be clear Reigns has the potential to be “The Guy.” But something needs to change for that to actually be the case.
Everyone is calling for a Reigns heel turn. And that could be a way to fix the problem. But we know that just like Cena, Reigns does bring in big money for the WWE. And because of that the WWE isn’t just going to let Reigns make that turn.
But the character of Roman Reigns must change because the current version of the character is stale and predictable. And while he’s been booked to lose several high profile matches that should send his character into a tailspin, he is acting as if nothing happened. The problem with such a strategy is that it is not believable.
Yes, we all understand that it is pro-wrestling, oh pardon me, sports entertainment. However, we can only suspend our disbelief but so much. We can all understand and even sympathize with the fact that sometimes even when we should have won we lost. Yet even when we don’t get the lucky breaks, we still get set back and have to regroup. However, in Roman Reigns case he doesn’t. He goes about his losses like victories, and we in the WWE Universe just don’t buy that.
For example, the believable behavior is that of John Cena in his loss to The Rock at Wrestlemania XXVIII (28). When Cena lost that match, he was seen sulking, reflexing after the match.
The reaction is much different for Roman after a series of losses he has the same look on his face. This causes some of the most significant ire from the WWE Universe as he just isn’t believable. Reigns has been caught multiple times laughing and smirking when he is supposed to be being beaten down. And even when he should be inflicting pain, he has been shown laughing and smirking.
Turning Roman Reigns heel would be an easy fix because then all of his mannerisms would be absolutely fine. He would be laughing when he has an opponent in a headlock. He would act as if nothing happened even if he lost. He would make excuses and they would be entirely justified. But if the WWE and namely Mr. McMahon want to keep Roman Reigns the supposed babyface character that he is somethings need to be changed and modified.
Fixing the Empire
All the gimmicks would need to change. He is a merchandise gold mine with kids the flack jacket and the wrist cannon, but with the people actually paying for the tickets to watch the product it is not. So lose the remnants of the Shield, an entirely new design in his attire.
Be Roman Not Superman
Much like John Cena, Roman Reigns has been booked like a superhuman, able to withstand incredible amounts of damage to little or no effect. This has to be done away with, pain is believable; it is relatable, two things that Roman Reigns currently is not. If Reigns were to endure punishment, not just from Brock Lesnar, and not be able to keep going, then and only then can he start to elicit some more platable reactions from the WWE Universe.
Move Past the Mundane
Reigns just like John Cena (and the trend continues) has a limited move set. For Cena, the “Five Moves of Doom” are all that he has in his repertoire, except for a brief period a couple of Summers ago when AJ Styles brought the best we’ve ever seen out of Cena. Reigns has followed much of the same path, he has the “Superman Punch,” the spear, the sit-out powerbomb, the corner & leaping clothesline and the Drivebye dropkick. Reigns needs to branch out and add to his redundant move set, and as I stated in my previous article, for Reigns to indeed find success, the Superman Punch must be done away with. Yes, we understand that Reigns is strong and a well-placed punch can knock someone out, the frequency of which Reigns uses the move has lessened the impact of its believability.
Needs an Advocate
I said this before, and I will continue to say it, Roman Reigns needs Paul Heyman. But since Heyman is otherwise advocating Reigns needs someone else to do the speaking for him. It’s no secret that Reigns is awful on the mic, and if he ever truly has aspirations of being “The Guy” he needs to improve those skills. But at present moment Reigns needs to not speak, if the WWE can find someone to speak for him, he will have a much easier time succeeding. Old school managers are no longer truly apart of the WWE, and for Roman, this hurts him. Imagine if you will, a great former WWE Manager, anyone you choose speaking for Reigns. Imagine just how much better his persona could be. Look at what Paul Heyman does for Brock Lesnar, Lesnar at this point isn’t much different than Reigns. A limited move set, terrible when he actually has to speak, built up to be such a dominating superpowered force. The one real separation is that Lesnar has Heyman speaking for him. If Reigns was able to have someone speaking on his behalf, he too could find himself in a better light with the WWE Universe.
Separation Makes the Heart Grow Fonder
Roman Reigns needs some time away. He has been overused, and his weaknesses exposed and therefore requires some time off screen. If Reigns were to stay away from WWE for a few weeks, maybe even a few months he can come back with a revamped character. Coming back a new man, and then fighting his way from the bottom to try to reclaim that top spot. Reigns was not done any favors when he defeated The Undertaker at Wrestlemania 33, and when he began claiming that the WWE ring was “His Yard” it placed him in a bad light amongst a majority of the WWE Universe. As it was felt he hadn’t truly done anything to deserve those accolades. If Reigns takes some time off and comes back different, then he may have a chance to save his career
All in all Roman Reigns has the tools to work with to be a viable top guy in WWE. Some changes must be made for Roman to receive a reaction unlike what John Cena has received for the last seventeen years. It will take the WWE choosing some different approaches to Roman and his character but he can be “The Guy” they want him to be.