Shortly after Becky Lynch’s surprise return at SummerSlam, a rumor went around that it was her idea to play against expectations and comeback as a heel. That’s not the way The Man explained it to Ryan Satin on the Out of Character podcast.
Lynch said she was thinking of ways to make her character fresh and edgy, but never expected Vince McMahon would want to turn one of his biggest stars into a villain:
“You’re always thinking of, ‘Oh, what would be cool, what would be interesting, what would get under people’s skin?’ I was always thinking of what it would be like, what would my comeback be like, what would I do when I came back. Vince is never going to want me as a heel, so what does this new babyface look like? And then they told me I was going to be a heel.”
One rumor Becky does confirm is that her return was a late call by WWE. She mentioned that before defending the decision to have her quickly beat Bianca Belair at the Aug. 21 show in Las Vegas - a move that has paid off much better than critical fans (including this writer) expected:
“It was very last minute. Very last minute. It’s so hard, especially when you’ve been a babyface for so long, and the crowd likes you and they’re endeared to you, and then you’ve gone away, and they’ve seen some of the stuff that I went through in the year, and I’m a new mom, and I’m coming back & they’re excited, and there’s this girl who’s been doing awesome. That’s a great rivalry - we like both of these guys. How do we make them not like one of them?
“She’s a company girl, let’s do this quick. I know a lot of people were upset, ‘Oh, if they were going to do this, they should’ve had a long match.’ Well, if we had a long match and then I beat her, then I just beat her. That’s not good - that’s not good for her. But if she’s robbed, and we take something from her and she doesn’t expect it, then we want to see her succeed? Oh, we want to see her succeed. We don’t want the person with it [the title] to have it anymore. We want that person to succeed. We want that more - I think we’re doing just fine... ‘I don’t like Becky as a heel, she’s so annoying.’ What? Okay. I think that’s the point, bro [laughs]. ‘Why would they do this to Bianca, I wanted her to win.’ Yeah, good. Good. This is what we want.... I think we’re doing a good job with it.”
While I’d probably counter that there are enough times when WWE’s plans don’t pan out to justify some of the audience’s concern about what happened at SummerSlam (Lynch herself talks frequently during this interview about how what became The Man character was supposed to be a heel back in 2019), I’ll definitely tip my cap to her, Belair, and the creative team for nailing this angle.
Check out the latest Out of Character for more from Bex. It’s a very good interview where she out of character (natch) and talks motherhood, social media, Ronda Rousey, her new finisher & more.