How Star Wars can explain Vince, Roman, and their hate

I don’t think I’m breaking new ground when I say that people on the Internet hate Roman Reigns. A lot. To the point where Wikipedia has an article dedicated to what people think about him. That is a level of hate that I never thought possible. And as I thought about all this hate, a thought came to me, and the more I thought about it, the more it makes way too much sense:

Roman Reigns is the Star Wars prequels of professional wrestling.

Let me explain what I mean by this. I believe the Star Wars prequels are the most hated things on the entire Internet. Even with things like Nickelback, the Michael Bay Transformers movies, and Michael Bay himself, the prequels stand alone on their own tier of online scorn. Trying to say even one positive thing about these films is like climbing Mount Everest and then having to fight Braun Strowman inside Hell In A Cell when you reach the top.  When I saw what people have to say about the Star Wars prequels, a weird kind of Poe’s Law comes into play: when I see these people put these three movies to the sword complaining about things like Midochlorians, Darth Vader’s “NO!”, giving shitty backstories that ruin how you see anyone that could have been described in the original trilogy as “a mysterious badass”, an overabundance of CGI, or saying that the person sitting in their chair taking it in needs to just watch the original trilogy like a real fan, I can’t help but think “do this complainer really think that, or are they trying to obliterate the easy thing to hate so the cool kids can like them and maybe even invite them to sit at the cool kids table?” That’s what I feel when I see Roman Reigns hate. People bash him for what could be legit reasons (his booking from 2015, his mic skills, Vince’s insistence to groom him to be the next face of WWE).

That’s what I feel when I see Roman Reigns hate. People bash him for what could be legit reasons (his booking from 2015, his mic skills, Vince’s insistence to groom him to be the next face of WWE), although the vitriol makes me think that the Roman bashing could be so they wouldn’t get picked on by r/SquaredCircle and be invited to watch New Japan with them while they talk about how Big Bad Vince is keeping guys like Sami Zayn down.

And the more I think about this, something else came to me. If Roman Reigns is the Star Wars prequels of professional wrestling, Vince McMahon is its George Lucas.

The reason for this line of thinking is that George Lucas went from being one of the most beloved directors in Hollywood and creators of what could be the greatest universe ever to the man that was so stuck in his vision that he ran the franchise that’s loved by so many people into the ground.

Let me list my parallels:

  • The fact that any good booking (such as last fall’s Smackdown Live) brings up the idea that Vince had absolutely no involvement whatsoever is like George Lucas getting no credit for anything good that’s happened in Star Wars. Think about it, when was the last time a Star Wars fan had anything nice to say about George Lucas and/or his contributions to the franchise? When was the last time anyone had to say anything nice about Vince regarding the in ring product since his feud with Stone Cold Steve Austin in 1999? This may be a stretch, but I have more.
  • The complaints people have over Roman, like his mic skills and his 2015 booking leading to the seemingly never-ending push? Those are like the complaints lodged toward the prequels over the CGI and the Midichlorians. In both cases, the same complaints have been made numerous times.
  • Vince’s micromanaging and changing the booking at the last minute brings up the Star Wars special editions and Lucas’s constant alterations for these special editions.
  • You ever get that feeling that Vince does stuff that makes you go “Fuck This Company”, complete with the GIF? You know like not giving Sasha Banks a meaningful title reign, running CM Punk out of professional wrestling altogether, canceling Talking Smack, not pushing guys like Sami Zayn and Finn Balor into the main event picture, not making Bray Wyatt into the next Undertaker as many feel he has the potential to be, making the Undertaker’s last opponent Roman Reigns instead of John Cena, or just any booking that feels like it was done by Vince out of spite because he hates the fans and spends every minute he’s awake thinking of ways to give them both of his middle fingers? I may be exaggerating, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Star Wars fans felt the same way when it comes to not being able to see the original trilogy in glorious high definition Blu-Ray because the one called Lucas is a dick.
  • All the Vince hate gave me the morbid thought that people were waiting for Vince to die and hope something would change in the meantime. That’s like something else unthinkable but which actually happened: Lucasfilm and the Star Wars IP being sold to Disney, and George Lucas going away, and any future ideas he had being thrown into the garbage…and if HHH or whoever else is in charge puts Roman Reigns in the main event of WrestleMania instead of Shinsuke Nakamura vs. AJ Styles in an epic storyline that involves The Club or Sami Zayn vs. Kevin Owens for the WWE/Universal Championship or whatever dream match you can think of, that is a level of disappointment and betrayal that Star Wars fans once felt. They felt it when the Star Wars Expanded Universe was declared to be non-canon by the mouse, which led The Force Awakens to be accused of being a retread of A New Hope instead of a potential epic new saga rooted in the worlds and concepts introduced by those that wondered what happened after the end of Return of the Jedi.

I know that this is weird. I’m aware that this line of thinking will probably go over like a lead balloon. But at the end of the day, this line of thinking makes too much sense to me. Also, the complaints that have been lodged have become so common you can predict when they’re going to be presented. If I’m able to present a different way of thinking about the hate toward Roman and Vince and convince people about my line of thinking, I think I can consider this a successful post.

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I think we’ve gone off the deep end with the anger toward Vince

(Note: I also submitted this as a fampost on CageSide seats as a fanpost. Check it out there if you want. There’s great debate and banter over there.

 

So, Talking Smack was canceled (technically, now it’s just after PPVS, but going by the reactions, you’d think it was gone forever). And the two hosts weren’t told in advance of the news dropping  And Vince is the reason why. Apparently, he didn’t like the unscripted nature of it all. And once again, the chairman of WWE takes away something the fans love. The FUCK THIS COMPANY GIF is in the comments section of this site. CM Punk’s pipebomb seems to make him be pro wrestling’s version of Nostradamus.

In the short time I’ve followed WWE (just before Money In The Bank 2016), and in reading about the superstars of past and present, I don’t think I’ve heard anything positive impact Vince have had on the product, and any good things he may have done in the past have been acknowledged in a “that was good, but he’s outlived his usefulness and he needs to let some new blood take over” way. And that’s not even touching the feelings people have toward his perceived right-hand man Kevin Dunn. Reading these opinions article after article, have made me realize something. Something that I haven’t fully realized until these past few days and this cancellation:

There are people waiting for Vincent Kennedy McMahon to die.

It’s morbid, it’s probably an extreme, and it’s probably not suited for this site. Sue me. I really think that there’s a section of fans that are waiting for Vince to croak. And if we aren’t at that point already, I think we’re getting dangerously close to that point with every little thing that comes out regarding Vince. He’s 71, he’s made it pretty damn clear he’s not going to retire or sell, so it makes sense that one would wait for Father Time to come and kick Vince’s ass until he moves on. It seems to some that Father Time got the better of The Undertaker with some hoping he’d just retire and enjoy his legacy before he does something in the ring that’ll severely affect his life.

What comes from Vince dying? I can think of two things:

1. HHH takes over.

It’ll be like this long coup (or boardroom takeover) culminating in The Game taking control of the whole company he’s dedicated the better part of his life toward. Think about it: become one of the biggest names in the company’s history, marry the boss’s daughter, get your own little project that gets beloved by the masses BECAUSE it’s something different and not unlike what your hated boss is doing, and when the boss croaks, you take your rightful place at the summit. I don’t care what the field is, that is a takeover plan that George R. R. Martin would be proud of. Also, if HHH is in charge, that means that the NXT stars that people have come to love like Sami Zayn, Kevin Owens, and The Four Horsewomen would be treated properly on the main roster and all the work HHH has done won’t go to waste in things like whatever Bayley’s doing. I wonder if that’s why the monster known as Asuka hasn’t been called up yet.

2. WWE is sold to someone outside of the McMahon family.

This one is simple: Either Stephanie or Shane inherits the company, and they get an offer they can’t refuse and they sell out of the family and they write their memoirs or do a podcast or do shoot interviews on the backstage politics and operations of WWE like so many wrestlers before them. What good can come from selling out of the family? There’s a chance that you get someone that actually listens to the fans. The prospective new owner may not give them their fantasy booking, but at least there’s a better chance there’s a Roman Reigns heel turn and the monster push will come to an end with said owner in charge instead of Vince. Why do you think there was that massive pop when Shane came back and why do you think so many were behind Shane when he feuded with his father going into WrestleMania 32? Because he represented the potential that things can be different. That there can be someone that can actually challenge Vince McMahon and his decisions on how things should be in WWE.

And that points out to another thing I feel when it comes to Vince and WWE in general: when someone gets beloved or over, it’s probably because of meta reasons. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve wondered if the reason Braun Strowman gets so many chants and pops is because he’s feuding with Roman Reigns and some of his bigger moments come from beating the tar out of him. Those chants of “You deserve it” and “Thank you, Strowman”? Those are the fans thanking The Monster Among Men for sending the message that the Roman push is a failure to them and Vince needs to end it and start pushing people like Finn Balor and Sasha Banks, those with the potential to be superstars if they weren’t handled by someone that’s been out of touch with what’s popular among wrestling fans for the better part of a decade, if not longer. Why is Daniel Bryan’s win at WrestleMania 30 so beloved? To me, it’s probably because Daniel Bryan, the fan’s choice for a star, defeated those handpicked by The Authority, the most despised higher ups that have been on WWE programming in years. And the CM Punk chants? That guy is still beloved, people think he wasn’t made to be the star he was meant to be in WWE, and to many, every word of his pipebomb is equal parts sermon and rallying cry to wage a never ending war against the McMahon establishment. A war they are sure to win someday.

Am I wishing that Vince McMahon will die someday? No. Am I upset that the booking I want to see hasn’t happened and future fantasy booking will probably not come to pass? A little. I guess the reason is that in the last few days, I think I’ve stared into the abyss and  I’ve seen the end result of the fans and their anger toward Vince McMahon. I’m kind of worried.