The Shield is what Donald Trump mistakes the F-35 fighter plane as: a transparent vehicle.
WWE have reformed the faction to hide in plain sight the launch of Roman Reigns’ run with the Universal Championship. But then, that’s what The Shield was all along. It was both a transparent vehicle and driving force of artistic brilliance. Roman Reigns was always The Guy, even in late 2012. CM Punk was infamously told to make Roman look strong a year after this had already become very apparent.
The Shield’s intra-match strategy prophesied Roman’s ascent as a singles player. Dean Ambrose was the unhinged rash who disoriented his opponents. Seth Rollins was the projectile missile who targeted them with precision airborne strikes. Roman was the man who let out the war cry and won the wars for his team. That was the impression we were left with: Roman was the all-powerful match-winner.
Can The Shield double as something genuinely amazing once more, in this post-‘Anybody-but-you-Roman’ 2018 landscape?
This week's RAW reformation angle was as odd as it was cynical as it was, just barely, a somewhat audacious success. The underlying unease was unshakeable, however, because the cynicism was not exclusive to Roman. To accept the reunion as something organic, we were expected to suddenly abandon our understanding of the babyface heel/dynamic in a strange new vacuum.
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