The ability to draw: Heels in wrestling
by, 05-31-2012 at 06:33 PM (3516 Views)
In my last blog, I briefly touched on the imporantace of being a draw in wrestling and the stem and roots that has to be planted properly in order to become a successful company man. In wrestling, there are various top wrestling draws that made a mark in wrestling, changing the foundation of entertainment that the fans oh-so crave for. From wrstling's top draws like Lou Thesz, to Hulk Hogan, to Stone Cold, all the way to John Cena, they are important leaders of their era, drawing in big crowds. They had to follow a step of smart marketing and booking which got them to the top. Although being a top babyface draw is important, a top heel is also important in the aspect of drawing as well.
Heels play an important role in an industry where top babyfaces dominate for the casual fan's liking. They are villians who makes the faces look good whether its putting them over or differing tottally from what the fans love in a wrestler. For a top babyface, they need to look good and score a win to send the fans home happy. To make things more climatic so to speak. For instance, Wrestlemania. At Wrestlemania, you rarely see a heel win to end the show. There is always a feel-good moment at the grandest stage of them all. Even at Wrestlemania 2000, Triple H (a heel at the time) retained his WWE title in a Fatal Four Way match but The Rock attacked him as well as the Mcmahons to give the fans a feel-good moment. Wrestlemania is and has always been a climatic show to give us wrestling fans a feel-good moment that we can write as one of the greatest climatic moments in Wrestlemania history.
Although Wrestlemania is mostly about climatic endings, there is one particular Wrestlemania that didn't have a climatic ending and that's; Wrestlemania X7. The ending of Wrestlemania X7 ended up in an anti-climatic to end the show. Stone Cold after beating The Rock and capturing the WWE title, ended up attacking The Rock with a steel chair even more and joining forces with Vince Mcmahon. Wrestlemania X7's ending was a heel turn from Stone Cold. Why? Well it set up a future climatic ending with Kurt Angle beating Stone Cold for the WWE title at Summerslam 2001 and The Rock pinning Stone Cold at Surivior Series to score the pinfall for Team WWE in the Invasion angle. When there is an anti-climatic finish, there is always a climatic finish. This keeps the fans watching to see if their favorite babyface will prevail in a feud.
As a heel, you need to do anything to get the fans to hate you. You need to annoy them and treat them like they are below you to draw instant heat. Doing anything at all cost in order to gain heat is what a heel should do. In some cases, cheap heat can help or hurt things in some cases. We all know about Chris Jericho's suspension for kicking a flag in Brazil as a way of doing his job and getting cheap heat but guess what, it worked. Although he got suspended, he still created controversy and that's also what a heel is suppose to do. Shawn Michaels has done it as a heel, JBL has done it as a heel, and now Chris Jericho has done it as a heel. Creating controversy=drawing. It draws the fans in to see that heel lose. People pay tickets to a wrestling event to say their favorite wrestlers win and people pay tickets to see wrestlers they despise lose. Another great exapmle is Hulk Hogan turning heel and the formation of NWO in WCW. Hulk Hogan debuted in WCW in 1994 as Hulkamania. The southern wrassing fans weren't buying into his Hulkamania gimmick like the WWE northern fans did which resulted in Hulk Hogan turning heel. At Bash at the Beach 1996, Hogan betrayed WCW by alliding with Kevin Nash and Scott Hall. It gave him massive heat which is why the NWO group drew so much fans into the WCW product. Mainly because the fans wanted to see which WCW wrestler would stop NWO since they were a dominate group.
Its quite simple that a heel's job is to put over a face but if a heel refuses to put over a face, it doesn't get that said over which is important for a heel to do the job. Like I said eariler, heels are made to make babyfaces look like a million bucks. That's pretty much their main job besides drawing mega heat. Without Andre The Giant putting over Hulk Hogan at Wrestlemania 3, Hogan would have been made to look we. Their is a reason why heels mainly lose. Their job isn't to be booked dominate. Like a superhero needs to beat a villian to look credible, a face needs to beat a heel to look credible in the world of proessional wrestling.
Thanks for reading guys. Leave a comment. Take care and be safe.