SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
Roman Reigns is one of the most divisive and talked about WWE performers in history. The company makes desperate play after desperate play to make him their number one star – with limited success. How do they do it? What do they do?
I’m Tom Colohue and this is the Monday Night Reigns-o-Meter.
Monday Night Reigns-o-Meter
So let’s talk about Roman Reigns for a moment. I say a moment, let’s talk about him for an article.
Roman Reigns, hated, despised, unwanted, has been feuding with Brock Lesnar for what seems like forever. Their reasons for fighting are rather well set. There’s unfinished business there. Roman has been long set up as champion of the full timers, starting with his war against John Cena at No Mercy. Throw in the strap and you’ve got what you need.
Now, however, for some reason everybody seems to be on Roman’s side.
This is confusing, of course. Not two months ago The Bar hated Roman but now they’re happy to step aside for him. Seth Rollins was eliminated from the Royal Rumble by Roman and yet tagged with him the next week. Roman continues the essentially bully Kurt Angle. This guy is not easy to like and yet, for some reason, people are getting behind him.
Why? Well there’s two reasons. One, everyone likes to see someone just go wild and wreck the place – something Roman does very well. Two, Brock Lesnar is just far easier to hate.
Yes, ladies and gents, the age old question has been answered. How do you make people cheer Roman Reigns? Put him against someone even easier to hate.
How they must regret moving Jinder Mahal away.
This week was the ‘Mania go home show and, as I have always dreamed, we all went home with Roman Reigns. While Roman lays beautifully on the ground, his hair strewn across his wet face, we all glare angrily at the guy who put him down. Our hero has had a rough time of it lately. A series of vicious beatings have left him unable to sell the aforementioned series of injuries.
I mean, he’s in no pain whatsoever apparently. Thankfully, that F5 really hurts. So basically Lesnar can break anyone in one month but Roman can do nothing.
To be fair, if we work via the medium of Braun Strowman, I’m pretty sure Brock Lesnar is Hercules by this point.
Over the course of the night, we see Kurt Angle warning Paul Heyman not to antagonise Roman. He tries to talk down Roman but only gets a rather brutal mockery made of him. Later, a highly excitable Roman Reigns, eager to get involved in a good old fashioned Attitude Era-style brawl, comes out looking to make friends with Brock Lesnar.
Friends with fists, you know. Fisting buddies.
It’s not so much a brawl a la Samoa Joe as it is a carefully orchestrated series of wrestling moves, but, hey, it pops the crowd. How long has it been since the crowd popped for Roman Reigns?
And how long will it be into his title reign before they start to crap all over him again. I for one can’t wait to find out.
NOW CHECK OUT LAST WEEK’S COLUMN: MONDAY NIGHT REIGNS-O-METER #55: Tracking Roman Reigns’s ability to beat the odds and come out on top