Time for a Twitter controversy!
Prince Pretty was taken to task by a fan on social media for leaving an event with a wrestler who portrays a "good guy" character, or babyface, when he's a bad guy, or "heel":
@MmmGorgeous Young man, I saw you leaving the arena in a rental car with a BABYFACE. I am thoroughly disgusted that you ignore a story.— Stan Howard (@GoingtoRasslin) April 27, 2016
Tyler Breeze didn't deny the charge, instead firing back:
Terms like that don't exist anymore.... Only to people who think they are "in the know" https://t.co/F5yxmYoEPw— Tyler Breeze (@MmmGorgeous) April 27, 2016
This has a lot of people talking. So let's join in!
Obviously, the term still exists. People inside the business and out use it routinely. Queue up pretty much any podcast featuring two current or former wrestlers and "heel" and "baby" or "face" will get thrown around.
It would be more accurate to say that the old kayfabe convention of good guys and bad guys not travelling together or associating outside of the venue is pretty much dead. In the world where performers routinely talk storyline on the aforementioned podcasts, or pal around in online videos like the old JBL & Cole Show or UpUpDownDown, pretending you're your character 24/7 is something that, for the most part, doesn't exist anymore.
There is a school of thought that says wrestling would be better off without worrying about babyfaces and heels, and Breeze's character is a good example of how it would work. He's a funny, entertaining jerk that you can root for without feeling evil, or have a great time booing.
But most fiction has heroes and villains, so wrestling is never going to be totally without babyfaces and heels.
The strange thing about Tyler's argument is, if there's no more face/heel designation, and kayfabe is antiquated, too, aren't we all "in the know"? And why is he Tweeting as his character and not Matt Clement?
Or is he just being a meta-heel?
Wrestling is hard. But Twitter controversy is fun!