Poor Charlotte Flair. Three words in the English language I never imagined putting together in a sentence. But with this soap opera between Lacey Evans, Ric Flair, and Charlotte pressing on with the speed and momentum of an avalanche, that sentence feels incredibly appropriate. For reasons passing understanding, WWE wants to tell a story of a grown-ass woman who can’t handle the fact her grown-ass father is maybe sorta kinda in a relationship with another grown-ass woman.
While the story relegates Asuka to B-side status and does nothing for Ric or Lacey, it hurts Charlotte just as much, if not more. Last Monday, it became clear WWE is making Charlotte regress from being the queen she claims to be. In this story, Ms. Flair is nothing but a petulant child who refuses to grow up.
As of late, meaning the last half dozen years or so, WWE isn’t the best when it comes to continuity. Who did what to whom for what reason is probably written on a chalkboard instead of an easel in permanent marker. Actually, it’s probably written on an Etch-a-Sketch. But the big things should matter, and Charlotte dragging her father on national television is a pretty big thing. The fact that she did it twice in the same damn year makes it gargantuan thing.
Yes, it was five years ago. And bygones being what they are, especially in wrestling, we get it. But that’s what makes the storytelling so lax in 2021. Charlotte said she didn’t need the old man in 2016. Has anything happened since then to prove her wrong? If anything, it’s the exact opposite. We’re told and shown through years of her story just how tall Charlotte can stand when it’s on her own two feet.
It’s hard to fathom how a woman this accomplished at this point in her life is bothered that much by who her father chooses to date. Sure there’s a chance Lacey’s feelings aren’t genuine, and Charlotte is merely playing the role of the protective daughter. But from the looks of things, she’s dealing with latent daddy issues. Charlotte said she’s no stranger to women hitting on her dad in front of her. She’s passively-aggressively stated it’s nothing new for Ric to spend time and money on everyone but family.
And the mere sight of Lacey having the unmitigated gal to *gasp* wear a Nature Boy robe prompted her to ditch her tag partner during a pretty important match. “Ditch” may be too kind of a word since she tagged herself out and pouted her way to the locker room. She wasn’t enraged, nor did she do it with any urgency. She did her best Charlie Brown impersonation while the commentators shed a couple tears in her honor. Until proven otherwise, this has little to do with making sure Naitch isn’t hustled and everything to do with Charlotte’s jealousy.
This “feud” isn’t about Lacey. At least not yet. Charlotte had a chance to put hands on her during the Royal Rumble and barely breathed on her, much less scratched her. If she was genuinely concerned about Ms. Evans’ motives, she’d say so and handle it immediately. This is WWE, once again, making Ric Flair the epicenter of his daughter’s career. It’s completely unnecessary, but if they want to do it, there’s a better way to get the job done.
Make it about the daughter protecting the father. Make it about the adult daughter truly establishing boundaries with her semi-adult dad. Make it about Ric having a tear in his eye for a daughter truly following his footsteps by creating her own legacy on her own terms. Instead, we’re left with two people who can’t let go of the past. A storyline meant to garner sympathy for the 11-time women’s champion is doing the exact opposite and making her look sad in the process.
Papa’s got a brand new blonde, and it’s transporting his daughter back to the days when Ric was never home and a tad unreliable. As a result, this 34-year-old woman, who is usually so focused and enamored with winning championships at any cost, is reduced to tears. She effectively forfeits a title match because her soon to be a 72-year-old father has a new girlfriend.
This is your queen?