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Daniel Bryan’s return shows how valuable a truly popular babyface is

Our video aces Cain A. Knight and Stef Hatala make a compelling argument for why Daniel Bryan’s return to WWE as more than just a General Manager is already one of the best stories in wrestling after just one night.

In so doing, they hit on something I’ve been thinking about since Geno Mrosko wrote about anticipating a Bryan hot tag at WrestleMania 34. It was definitely on my mind during the amazing final segment on the SmackDown which aired on Tues., Mar. 20.

We may be living in the ‘Reality’ Era, a largely post-heels and faces time where the most important thing is getting a reaction that causes fans in the arena to make any kind of noise, generates clicks on YouTube and inspires follows on social media. Shades of gray storytelling is great! It’s even working in the angle DB finds himself in immediately following being cleared for a return to action. Kevin Owens, Sami Zayn, Shane McMahon and The Beard himself have shown their good and bad sides in the long-running tale.

But a hero a sizeable chunk of the audience has rejected (or a villain a large percentage of them have decided is cool) doesn’t garner the kind of response Bryan got a couple nights ago.

That kind of group euphoria and disgust is only possible when most of the crowd is on the same page. And forget just pro wrestling’s ‘Reality’ Era - in the divided 21st century world we live in, any person who can bring thousands of people together is a special one.

It’s one of many reasons we love Daniel Bryan. And even though we’re worried about his health no matter what the best doctors on earth say, or while we’ll still enjoy loving, hating or loving to hate the Romans and Brocks and Sashas and Rondas of WWE, there’s nothing like having a truly popular babyface back on our screens.

If you enjoy the video that got me rambling on this topic, remember to like our Facebook page and subscribe to our YouTube channel, where Cain and Stef are producing great stuff like it all the time!

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