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Appreciating the "Bad Guy": Now vs Then

  • 29-07-2016 4:39pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 1,713 ✭✭✭


    Thought I'd start a thread based upon people's favourite heel-work throughout the years... Would love to see videos of people's favourite heel promo's, stories of how heat was drawn from the crowd etc.

    Jericho's current work is thoroughly enjoyable to me, I love the "Drink it in, man" stuff! Obviously everyone rants and raves about how great Owens is doing since joining WWE, but it really got me thinking...

    Has the current day heel got anything on past superstars? Is it harder to get over as a heel due to everyone's love for cheering what they're not supposed to? What made a good heel in the past, and is it a different story nowadays... Is there even such a thing as a face/heel anymore?


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,722 ✭✭✭SureYWouldntYa


    They've got a "bad guy", but they think he's just "the guy"

    If they turned him heel fans from the iwc would continue booing him and kids/casuals would also have reason to boo him

    If they turned Roman they'd get proper heel heat. The Miz is one of few at the moment getting proper heel heat, as he's playing up the character people expect of him


  • Registered Users Posts: 11,611 ✭✭✭✭ERG89


    The Miz is one of few at the moment getting proper heel heat, as he's playing up the character people expect of him

    Said it before but he's the only guy who gets his job as a heel. Get booed & make people want to see him get his ass kicked. Been booked horrendously lately, especially on this weeks Smackdown


  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 22,627 Mod ✭✭✭✭Bounty Hunter


    A lot of the current batch seem to like the idea of being a heel because it allows them more freedom in what they do but they all try and be the cool heel as apposed to the guy (like how it's pointed out about the Miz) that makes you boo him.

    It is okay for some heels to be fan favorites because the fans acknowledge the great work they do (a la Owens) but the majority of the heels on the show should be getting the fans to boo them so that it will actually mean something to those fans when a face goes over them, like for instance how Rollins can still get the fans to boo him even though they all respect how good he is.


  • Registered Users Posts: 32,768 ✭✭✭✭CSF


    Rusev, Del Rio and Sheamus are all good heels who can more than go in the ring. We're in an era where the likes of Owens and Wyatt are our choice of heel and they're not really heels in the way that has been described. The minute Wyatt actively had the fans singing along with him you could never call him
    a heel in that sense.

    Styles and Rollins to be fair are probably the 2 heels you've got at the top of the card who so far in their heel run have legitimately tried to make the fans dislike them in everything they do.


  • Registered Users Posts: 45,535 ✭✭✭✭Mr.Nice Guy


    I disagree on The Miz. He generates 'go away' heat for me and I think the IC Title has really sunk since he and Ryder had their turns holding it. There was a brief point when Daniel Bryan had the belt that it meant something and now it is practically worthless. I would say he is a fine heel for a certain level, and he plays an annoying character well, but he shouldn't be anywhere near the main or secondary title imo. Beating him elevates nobody and that is an important measuring stick for a top heel - a win against them ought to matter.

    The best heel they have on their books right now in my opinion is Samoa Joe. I think he is wasted on NXT when Smackdown needs a boost at the minute. I also think not doing something with Bubba Ray (ie the Bully Ray character) is a shocking waste of talent. I really think he could be a very good upper mid card level heel and it would be a much better use of him than in a seldom-seen tag team.

    'It is better to walk alone in the right direction than follow the herd walking in the wrong direction.'



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  • Registered Users Posts: 731 ✭✭✭Reebrock


    Charlotte is a brilliant heel. A lot of folk can't handle that.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,689 ✭✭✭sky88


    The miz is a classic heel love the guy, criminally underrated in the ring too


  • Registered Users Posts: 60,274 ✭✭✭✭Agent Coulson


    It's kind of funny really that The Miz a guy who was ribbed/bullied so bad for not paying his dues understands/stood the business more than most on the roster.

    He is a great heel.


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,722 ✭✭✭SureYWouldntYa


    Reebrock wrote: »
    Charlotte is a brilliant heel. A lot of folk can't handle that.

    I'm of the same opinion for sure

    She has a weird way she sometimes goes about her promos, she does weird pauses and sort of shouts in the middle for no real reason, but she's a great heel foil to the other 3 horsewomen

    Nikki Bella while a heel sort of has more go away heat for me than actual heat, that and people thinking she's only there because of Cena


  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 18,110 Mod ✭✭✭✭DM_7


    I don't think people respecting talents who engage them should have their worked criticised while people who make fans tune out are praised.

    Miz is not engaging, is not interesting and is not must see like he used to be.

    In his way to the WWE title he was great and booked well. Was booked badly ever since and has never looked like a legitimate threat to anyone.

    Edge, Orton, Punk and Jericho had great heel runs. Seth was amazing post shield and pre injury, despite typical weak booking he rose above it. They would make you pay attention and want to watch them.

    I agree with MNG that Joe is the stand out right now. He has a presence that few ever have.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 305 ✭✭Imnotthehulk


    Personally i think the Miz is one of the best heels in the WWE. Fair to say he has been treated quite shoddily by the creative sides and been given not much to do. I've found a lot of his run as IC champ to be very entertaining. He did a great job as antagonist to Damien Sandow's Mizdow, he even made Alex Riley someone worth cheering for (for a bit).

    Jericho is the guy who makes me want to change the channel. I don't know what it is about him, but I'm not currently buying any of his stick. Best thing he's done recently was his interview on the live draft show on the network. (for me at least)

    Charlotte is a fantastic heel, and I'm loving her alliance with Dana Brooke at the moment. Sasha Banks was also a fantastic heel, it's nearly a shame she's a face at the moment, but Charlotte needs a foil.


  • Registered Users Posts: 45,535 ✭✭✭✭Mr.Nice Guy


    Cianan2 wrote: »
    Thought I'd start a thread based upon people's favourite heel-work throughout the years... Would love to see videos of people's favourite heel promo's, stories of how heat was drawn from the crowd etc.

    The Mark Henry phony retirement angle was the best heel promo that I can think of in recent years. I thought that was absolutely brilliant. Surely Mark Henry's finest hour.


    'It is better to walk alone in the right direction than follow the herd walking in the wrong direction.'



  • Registered Users Posts: 32,768 ✭✭✭✭CSF


    I'm of the same opinion for sure

    She has a weird way she sometimes goes about her promos, she does weird pauses and sort of shouts in the middle for no real reason, but she's a great heel foil to the other 3 horsewomen

    Nikki Bella while a heel sort of has more go away heat for me than actual heat, that and people thinking she's only there because of Cena

    Not really of the opinion that go away heat exists for a heel. If the fans don't like you and want to see you beaten you've done your job. If the fans want to see you win you've got it wrong somewhere.

    Whether we like it or no, 90% of the WWE booking works as heel vs face. A heel and a face elevating each other. Stone Cold and The Rock the classic example.

    Take someone like Kevin Owens for example. Unbelievable wrestler, one of the best on the mic WWE have so naturally one of the most talented on the roster. Playing the wrong role though. That Kevin Owens vs Sami Zayn feud was begging to be booked as the underdog story. WWE were trying to, but it doesn't work when loads of the crowd want Owens to win and aren't that eager to see him get his comeuppance.

    You've the same issues with Reigns as a face. How does a heel elevate themselves when most of the crowd actually want to see them get one over on Reigns?

    I mean you have to be good in the ring and on the mic too, because you have to be able to tell the story, but in terms of playing the role you're being assigned, if you're a heel and the fans don't like you, you're doing it right, if you're a face and the fans like you, you're doing it right. Everything after that is down to booking.


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators Posts: 22,289 CMod ✭✭✭✭Pawwed Rig


    Honky Tonk man was a great character. Absolutely spineless with no morals whatsoever. He was hated.
    The feud with Macho Man was legendary TV.


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,722 ✭✭✭SureYWouldntYa


    CSF wrote: »
    Not really of the opinion that go away heat exists for a heel. If the fans don't like you and want to see you beaten you've done your job. If the fans want to see you win you've got it wrong somewhere.

    Whether we like it or no, 90% of the WWE booking works as heel vs face. A heel and a face elevating each other. Stone Cold and The Rock the classic example.

    Take someone like Kevin Owens for example. Unbelievable wrestler, one of the best on the mic WWE have so naturally one of the most talented on the roster. Playing the wrong role though. That Kevin Owens vs Sami Zayn feud was begging to be booked as the underdog story. WWE were trying to, but it doesn't work when loads of the crowd want Owens to win and aren't that eager to see him get his comeuppance.

    You've the same issues with Reigns as a face. How does a heel elevate themselves when most of the crowd actually want to see them get one over on Reigns?

    I mean you have to be good in the ring and on the mic too, because you have to be able to tell the story, but in terms of playing the role you're being assigned, if you're a heel and the fans don't like you, you're doing it right, if you're a face and the fans like you, you're doing it right. Everything after that is down to booking.

    Go away heat for me anyway usually means fast forwarding whatever segment they're in. That's what Nikki Bella always was for me. Reigns on his own after seeing all the boos he gets to have a lol is usually fast forward too.

    It's harder though to have your classic face v heel feud. You gave the perfect example with Owens. But putting him with the right face in Sami Zayn or Cesaro equals him getting cheers but not as many as if paired with John Cena or Ryback. It's something I hope the bookers take into account, if they do want him to be booed.

    Reigns even got cheered against Sheamus, as he was more of a suitable opponent for him. Look at the reaction he was getting the time he beat Sheamus for the title, very little booing because everyone wanted to see him over Sheamus. HHH had the surprise return going for him to start the feud going into Mania. If they had kept the title on Sheamus, maybe Reigns winning the Rumble and beating him at Mania might have gotten him the more desired reaction.

    All the same, John Cena is getting mixed reactions and they never really changed a thing so as long as the money is still coming in little they don't want to change will be changed.


  • Registered Users Posts: 32,768 ✭✭✭✭CSF


    Go away heat for me anyway usually means fast forwarding whatever segment they're in. That's what Nikki Bella always was for me. Reigns on his own after seeing all the boos he gets to have a lol is usually fast forward too.

    It's harder though to have your classic face v heel feud. You gave the perfect example with Owens. But putting him with the right face in Sami Zayn or Cesaro equals him getting cheers but not as many as if paired with John Cena or Ryback. It's something I hope the bookers take into account, if they do want him to be booed.

    Reigns even got cheered against Sheamus, as he was more of a suitable opponent for him. Look at the reaction he was getting the time he beat Sheamus for the title, very little booing because everyone wanted to see him over Sheamus. HHH had the surprise return going for him to start the feud going into Mania. If they had kept the title on Sheamus, maybe Reigns winning the Rumble and beating him at Mania might have gotten him the more desired reaction.

    All the same, John Cena is getting mixed reactions and they never really changed a thing so as long as the money is still coming in little they don't want to change will be changed.

    I think therein lies the problem, they're so committed to this heel/face dynamic in terms of how they build their storylines but then they never seem to actually build their characters towards it.

    I mean something like Kevin Owens vs Cesaro is a dream watch for hardcore wrestling fans but in storyline terms it absolutely doesn't create the kind of engagement that WWE are striving for. And that's why these sort of matches get limited to 20 minute raw matches.

    I think it's partly a combination between heels not wanting to play heels anymore, and booking not doing a good enough job of booking them that way anymore anyway.


  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 18,110 Mod ✭✭✭✭DM_7


    CSF wrote: »
    Not really of the opinion that go away heat exists for a heel. If the fans don't like you and want to see you beaten you've done your job. If the fans want to see you win you've got it wrong somewhere.

    Whether we like it or no, 90% of the WWE booking works as heel vs face. A heel and a face elevating each other. Stone Cold and The Rock the classic example.

    Take someone like Kevin Owens for example. Unbelievable wrestler, one of the best on the mic WWE have so naturally one of the most talented on the roster. Playing the wrong role though. That Kevin Owens vs Sami Zayn feud was begging to be booked as the underdog story. WWE were trying to, but it doesn't work when loads of the crowd want Owens to win and aren't that eager to see him get his comeuppance.

    You've the same issues with Reigns as a face. How does a heel elevate themselves when most of the crowd actually want to see them get one over on Reigns?

    I mean you have to be good in the ring and on the mic too, because you have to be able to tell the story, but in terms of playing the role you're being assigned, if you're a heel and the fans don't like you, you're doing it right, if you're a face and the fans like you, you're doing it right. Everything after that is down to booking.

    I think that is a classic scenario rather than the scenario we see now. The people and the business is overexposed now. No matter what Kevin Owens does he will always have people routing for him because they were fans of him before he joined the E and have genuine respect for his work.

    This is something that exists on other forms of entertainment as well, the "wow he is brilliant" respect from people who are deeply interested in a show or person will always exist now because of the access to information we all have.

    Examples are CM Punk in the SES. He was truly despicable and in particular against Rey Mysterio, yet a percentage would still cheer for him and respect him because they were genuinely interested in the man. Eddie also had a despicable feud with Rey and again a percentage would still route for him because of the mans story.

    This is not something that existed years ago in wrestling or other entertainment, it was easy to keep a kayfabe existence which made it easier to be a bad guy.

    Now the focus for the very best has to be continuing to engage people and keep them interested in a show. The old idea of universal top class heel is almost gone. WWE now embrace the idea of talents having supporters and fans who dislike them as seen in other sports. Its okay to have fans in an arena cheering for different people. The most important thing is that people want to watch you. If they don't want to watch then you/the bookers have failed.


  • Registered Users Posts: 32,768 ✭✭✭✭CSF


    DM_7 wrote: »
    I think that is a classic scenario rather than the scenario we see now. The people and the business is overexposed now. No matter what Kevin Owens does he will always have people routing for him because they were fans of him before he joined the E and have genuine respect for his work.

    This is something that exists on other forms of entertainment as well, the "wow he is brilliant" respect from people who are deeply interested in a show or person will always exist now because of the access to information we all have.

    Examples are CM Punk in the SES. He was truly despicable and in particular against Rey Mysterio, yet a percentage would still cheer for him and respect him because they were genuinely interested in the man. Eddie also had a despicable feud with Rey and again a percentage would still route for him because of the mans story.

    This is not something that existed years ago in wrestling or other entertainment, it was easy to keep a kayfabe existence which made it easier to be a bad guy.

    Now the focus for the very best has to be continuing to engage people and keep them interested in a show. The old idea of universal top class heel is almost gone. WWE now embrace the idea of talents having supporters and fans who dislike them as seen in other sports. Its okay to have fans in an arena cheering for different people. The most important thing is that people want to watch you. If they don't want to watch then you/the bookers have failed.

    I agree with you to an extent but you've people like The Rock, Seth Rollins and even Stone Cold who everyone loved, but were able to get their character's over as a heel when the storylines went that way. If Owens isn't gonna be able to get over as a heel then get him over as a badass face because he's too talented to leave in that sort of limbo position where he's almost limited to 20 minute Raw matches that people love, but PPV feuds that people ultimately don't invest in.

    Where you've superstars that as you've said people want to watch then it's never a good thing when that's not translating into memorable feuds.


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