On the latest edition of his ARN podcast legendary wrestler and current AEW manager Arn Anderson spoke about WWE Universal champion Roman Reigns, and why he believes the Tribal Chief’s run as a babyface beginning in 2015 did not go over well with fans. Check out highlights from the Enforcer’s thoughts below.
Explains why Reigns did not get over as a babyface:
“The 100% faith in himself that he can make any idea he has a reality and everybody will accept it. That Roman Reigns was going to be the lead guy as a babyface for the company, instead of seeing way back when, years before that, that that’s not what they wanted Roman to be. Roman doesn’t have to say anything, all Roman has to do is come through the curtain and be an ass kicking machine. They don’t want him to be a nice guy, they don’t want him to be clever, they don’t want him to be entertaining and they certainly don’t want to see him spear five or six heels in a given time.”
Uses Kevin Owens’ main roster call-up as an example of the crowd getting behind a star:
“One of the things I did learn from Vince early on is, don’t shove a baby face down the peoples necks if they’re not going to accept it because they’ll regurgitate it. We got away from that theory and we quit listening to our audience because they will absolutely tell you what they want. I used Kevin Owens as an example. When he beat Cena, the first show he was on, the audience was 90% behind Kevin Owens. That week, creative should’ve sat down and went: I don’t care what you have written down for the next week or month, this guy is a baby face next week. Doesn’t mean we change his style of work, just means that we put him in a position to be the favourite in the match. It was so crystal clear that was what they wanted, give it to them.”
How booking Reigns like a God babyface didn’t do him any favors:
“The fact that Roman goes out there and spears five guys does not make Roman more of a baby face. It makes him a God, and he’s not earning his position or push. He’s just out there running through guys and the audience smells it and they don’t like it.”
(H/T and transcribed by Wrestling Inc.)