Will the strain of being the only ugly sister in a promotion full of Cinderellas exacerbate Awesome Kong's mental instability?
A couple of days ago, Dave Meltzer confirmed that Kia Stevens, better known by her current ring name of Awesome Kong, had been officially signed by WWE, despite a possible last minute hiccup caused by Kong prematurely tweeting on December 29th that:
My dreams just came true today. I got my dream job. Yes, THAT one.
This wasn't the only hiccup, as Jason Powell reported yesterday that WWE asked her to sort out an outstanding legal issue before they would sign her to a contract:
WWE sources say Awesome Kong (a/k/a Kia Stevens) was asked by WWE officials to clear up her legal situation in Florida before going to work for the company. Thus, she turned herself in to Hillsborough County, Florida officials so that her driving without a license charge could be resolved.
... One source stated that Kong moved out of Florida recently and returned there last week specifically to deal with this situation.
The signing is an intriguing WWE decision given that Dave Meltzer speculated several months ago that WWE were leery of signing Kong, despite her proven talent, possibly due to her mental instability and a past suicide attempt. I wouldn't blame WWE for being wary, given that Kong exhibited plenty of strange behaviour before, during and after her bizarre backstage fight with Bubba The Love Sponge that eventually led to her leaving TNA.
Moreover, as Kevin Eck of the Baltimore Sun notes, Kong is the exact opposite of what WWE usually looks for in a woman and they haven't got a perfect track record of pushing such a monster female heel either:
Despite being one of the most talented and unique performers in the business, the 275-pound Kong doesn't come close to fitting the WWE Diva mold and therefore always seemed like a long shot to be signed by WWE after she was released by TNA last March.
For years, WWE's female roster has been filled with swimsuit and fitness model types, some who were capable workers and some who were not. It's been more than a decade since "anti-divas" such as Luna and Chyna (the pre-surgery version) were in WWE.
The last time a woman of her size was in WWE, it was Bertha Faye back in the pre-Diva era of the mid '90s (although, to be fair, there aren't many women in wrestling that are Kong's size).
Let's just hope that the similarities between Kong and Faye end there. Faye was pushed as a killer heel under the name Monster Ripper in Japan and Mexico. However, as Faye in WWE, she was used as comic relief, including doing a story line in which she was romantically involved with sawed-off, smarmy manager Harvey Wippleman.
So I would like to conclude this column by congratulating Kong on signing with WWE and would like to wish her the best of luck in avoiding the obvious potholes of being pigeonholed as humiliating comedy fodder and the strain of being the only ugly sister in a promotion full of Cinderellas. As being put in such a position did Luna Vachon's mental health no good, whose bipolar issues "were compounded by her belief that she was too ugly to be a major star in wrestling".