As much as I respect and appreciate Roman Reigns as a performer, and as hard as I’m pulling for him to break Bruno Sammartino’s championship record, I’m also a fan of good television.
And the conclusion to the most recent episode of SmackDown was incredible.
Pro wrestling, to me, is best when it’s unpredictable and the outcome of a match or storyline is uncertain. Not that predictability is bad; it just varies from angle to angle.
I was positive that Jey Uso would fall in line with Reigns. So positive that I wrote an extraordinary essay about it. And then, POOF! WWE and the Usos blew my theories out of the water.
And do you know something? It was awesome!
When pro wrestling is done right, it sparks passion and emotional investment. And when I’m emotionally engaged, I live and die on the outcome, like that of a legit sporting event.
For the first time in months, I’m not sure that Reigns will prevail. It makes me nervous, which only heightens my experience. If you’re a Reigns detractor who’s been dying to see him drop the Undisputed Universal title, you must be overjoyed right now because there’s a chance you may get your wish. And that’s also going to heighten your experience.
We may not cheer for the same people or believe in the same things. But we are fans, fans rooting passionately for our side to prevail in an unpredictable situation. And there is joy in that, as this ride will take us through the full spectrum of emotions, all from the comfort and safety of home.
And that, as a certain creepy boss might say, is good shit, pal.