10 Times WWE Failed At Forced Emotion

Feel free to retire your face character, Trips mate.


For an industry so patently ludicrous and obviously predetermined, pro wrestling has created - key word - many heart-wrenching moments over the years.

That is a testament to why it resonates - and why WWE should be quick to utilise the realistic framework it has previously used to such memorable effect. Fans rejoiced at Daniel Bryan's WrestleMania XXX title win because he rose above the odds stacked genuinely against him by his own company to emerge as their heroic proxy.

Fans suspended their disbelief at Vince McMahon's teary COO demotion in 2011 because the acting was ultra-realistic and it felt - at that time, at least - like the company would actually follow through with his kayfabe exit. It made sense in the scheme of things. McMahon was hardly a permanent fixture on WWE television at the time. His presence wasn't ubiquitous enough to undermine the storyline.

Conversely, WWE have on many occasions tried to imbue their trademark "moments" with an undercurrent of real-life emotion - only to fail miserably.

Wrestling fans will suspend their disbelief - but only to a point. When their intelligence is insulted - when they are asked to invest in dramatic stakes which blatantly do not exist, or have been mined exploitatively - they are more likely to lose their temper than get something stuck in their eye...

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Former Power Slam Magazine scribe and author of Development Hell: The NXT Story - available NOW on shop.whatculture.com!