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If you don't mind, I'm going to take a minute to announce a very special edition of "VOW Reaction" this Sunday night after WrestleMania 28! It's going to be a huge post-show and I hope you can join Nick Paglino and myself, immediately following Sunday's event. To watch the live video broadcast, simply visit WrestleZone.com immediately following the pay per view and there will be a direct link. We'll be taking your phone calls throughout the show, plus we hope to be joined by Justin LaBar and/or Josh Isenberg of Chair Shot Reality, live from Miami! Follow me on Twitter @RealityofChris as I'll be live tweeting my thoughts during WrestleMania before I go live with "VOW Reaction".
Now, let's look at the stars...
Chris Jericho - One Step Up
CM punk took a step up this week. The entire program took another step in the right direction as well. But Chris Jericho's steps up have been largest the past two weeks. And necessary.
When I look back at how this feud began and why it has fallen flat up this point, I believe I've reached a conclusion. A theory, at least.
I no longer think it's because Rock and Cena have overshadowed it. I no longer blame Creative as much. Both of those are accurate and still part of the problem, but I think there's something else to blame more. Or "someone" else to blame, rather.
I'm not going to say he isn't as talented in the ring or on the mic as he claims. He is. These past two weeks have proven that, in my opinion. However, I don't know if I -- or the majority of fans -- ever really saw him as a true main event guy. I'm still not sure we do now, either.
The "first Undisputed Champion" accolade he brags about didn't really amount to much in the long run. It was portrayed as a fluke then, and it remains that way in memory.
2008 was the year of Chris Jericho. That's when he seriously elevated his game to a new level. His program with Shawn Michaels was the best of that year and one of the best of that decade. But he didn't remain on top long enough after that was over. He still shined, but not at the top of the card.
Jericho leaves again. And returns again. The time away didn't do him any favors. The way WWE once again tried to build him up with the overhype, the cryptic videos, etc. didn't help either. Fans didn't see him that way the first time. They didn't see him that way now.
It could have been better had it not been for the false promises. The video messages ended up amounting to zilch. His promise for the Rumble was a joke. Jericho, up until two weeks ago, was the posterchild for colossal failures and resulting disappointment.
Punk deserved better. He finally got it when Jericho went below the belt two Mondays ago bringing up Punk's alcoholic dad and continued the personal attacks last week. Jericho needed heat in a bad way -- heat worthy of being a credible challenger to CM Punk and the WWE Championship. The personal, shoot-like approach he took achieved just that. And as soon as he went there, it was off to the races until WrestleMania.
Jericho is back where he belongs -- proving by example that he truly is great at what he does, rather than us being forced to accept it without cause.