I’ve got to laugh. WWE has spent years conditioning fans to accept a certain kind of wrestler as champ. Then it makes Daniel Bryan champ. Why?
To prove he can’t cut it, of course.
The perverse pleasures that go on in WWE's executive offices would shame Max Hardcore.
Bryan is an undersized vegan with a geeky beard. He compromised his own character when he passed up a main event at WrestleMania to get a greasy, crusty title win over The Big Show via MITB. He gets a decent pop, but he’s not going to move the needle.
Cue self-righteous “I told you so.” Repeat as necessary. Back to the mid-card.
C.M. Punk is cut from the same cloth, but his presentation is better. We know more about him. He’s demonstrated he understands the biz. Won’t take crumbs, either.
Bryan is the legit shooter who took the easy way out. But he’s still a babyface. CONFUSING.
Bryan’s title win was also CONFUSING. He’s a babyface. But he took advantage of a heel move executed by a heel to beat a babyface for the world title. Bryan didn’t execute a single move to beat The Big Show. Didn’t demonstrate why he DESERVES to be world champion.
Bryan just covered somebody who got knocked nearly unconscious by somebody else.
Bryan’s whole character is that he can legitimately beat anybody else. That he DESERVES better. The way he won the world title undid all that. Furthermore, the lead announcer – at the raging behest of the promoter – goes out of his way to bury Bryan every chance he gets, and the burial is ABOVE AND BEYOND. Add it all up, and Daniel Bryan = FLUKE.
I wish I’d announced for VKM. Not only would he have let me bury DDMe, he’d have fed me lines, and I certainly wouldn’t have gotten FIRED for it.
Bryan = FLUKE. Don’t forget, what a mere handful of ROH hardcores remember doesn’t figure into the equation. VKM wants Bryan perceived as a fluke, because he wants to prove Bryan and his ilk can’t cut it. He’s giving him a chance, sure. Can you recall a chance more halfhearted and sabotaged?
Making everything ever SILLIER is that WWE’s writers see this kind of booking as creating doubt, doubt that piques fan curiosity. Is Bryan a heel or face? Will Show’s bitterness make him a heel? Problem is, I DON’T CARE because I’m CONFUSED by LACK OF LOGIC.
It’s a shame the belts have been devalued so much. If the world title was still a holy grail, it would be easier to justify how Bryan won it. But it’s not, so it isn’t.
Bryan’s other problem is, he just doesn’t look the part. Bigger has been better throughout nearly the entire history of WWE. You need overwhelming personality and presentation to beat that. Bryan ain’t exactly HBK. He looks Amish.
Bryan and Punk in the ring together with their titles reminded me of Chris Benoit and Eddy Guerrero in the ring with their titles at WrestleMania XX. Nice moment. But you know it wouldn’t last, because WWE wouldn’t let it.
Mark Madden hosts a radio show 3-6 p.m. weekdays on WXDX-FM, Pittsburgh, PA (105.9). Check out his web page at WXDX.com. Contact Mark by emailing email@example.com. MARK ON TWITTER: @MARKMADDENX