Cena/Rock Promos: Catchphrases, Jealousy, and Twitter
by, 02-29-2012 at 12:19 PM (5247 Views)
Since I've not been at home this week I've not been able to catch the full episode of Raw. I did, however, catch the highlights on wwe.com, and I wanted to give my views on the popular topic of the week; The Rock and John Cena's promos.
John Cena's promo
I said this in my blog from last week, but I'll say it again for the sake of a fair argument. He cut a great promo, and it worked in kicking off a feud which should really have had more put into it before now.
After a week or so to think about it, and read some other blogs on here, I've had some more thoughts on it. It's pretty clear that Cena has used the fact that many fans feel betrayed by Rocky for leaving WWE all those years ago to pursue a movie career as a way to try and win them over. Of course, Cena's feigned anger was a huge help in making it a decent promo, but it was mainly the fact that many younger fans feel like they missed out on seeing one of the best and the older fans' supposed betrayal by Dwayne.
It's a great way to go, and it works. The problem is that us older fans aren't buying it. We aren't as easily influenced as the children, and we all know that given the chance at least 50% of us would take a new career direction if we had accomplished all we could in our current job. That's basically what Rocky did. He did all he planned to do in WWE and moved on to something new. If you really look at it Cena is simply playing the resentment card against The Rock. There might even be some jealousy on his part too in that he knows he doesn't have the option to mount a genuine movie career outside of WWE, but that's just speculation on my part.
All in all, it's a standard scripted promo from Cena, but for once it's intriguing.
The Rock's promo
As you can already tell, I'm not a huge Cena fan. But his promo was smarter and more imaginative than The Rock's.
It was entertaining on every level that you would expect from The Rock, but for me it wasn't as evocative as it needed to be. It was the same thing we've seen the past few times from Rocky. He talked about what his side of the fan base knows - we are bored of John Cena and have been for some time. What it lacked was any real response to Cena's promo. He is being built as the heel here, much like Hogan was for WrestleMania X-8. The problem is that the fans love The Rock more than they ever loved Cena (Hogan had the nWo and the fact that he was a mega-heel in WCW to run with). The idea behind Rock's promo seems to be that they want to turn Rocky into the same heel-type character he was in his 'Hollywood' persona (the wrist notes thing was quite clever), but Cena doesn't have a share of the audience large enough to make it happen at this point.
Basically, I expected better from The Rock in terms of a personal issue with Cena, but he seems to have dropped that just a touch since last year. It needs to hit home on a more personal level for The Rock to really hit a nerve in this build up, but what does he have to work with? Not much at all.
For me Cena cut the better promo overall, but it was due to a major flaw in the buildup over the past year. Cena has been touting about how he doesn't care if the fans love him or hate him for so long it would not be believable if he suddenly became bothered. There's no button to push on Cena, whilst The Rock has a tonne of criticism on him for a) leaving the company to pursue a movie career, and b) effectively acting as the bully in this storyline. You can't really assign The Rock as a bully against Cena since he is more over with the fans - face it WWE, he's missed, not hated.
Hopefully this will develop into something more worthwhile, because right now it looks like another SuperCena storyline, just on a more elevated level because it involves The Rock. And WrestleMania. And the idea of two eras colliding. The ingredients are there - I just hope WWE uses them effectively.
Thanks for reading. Feel free to comment. And as ever follow me on Twitter (@ComingToCinemas) and check out my uploaded content for WWE'12 on the PSN (ajspringer1990).