Why WWE Superstar Roman Reigns Will Never Be A Full BabyFace
Leati Joseph Anoa'i known to WWE Fans under his alias, Roman Reigns is one of the biggest names in wrestling today. From his debut in November 2012, alongside fellow members of the SHIELD, Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins, Roman has been on a major uprise in his career. He has already held the WWE Championship three (3) times, along with the United States Championship, the Intercontinental Championship and the tag team championship with Seth Rollins, making him the 17th Grand Slam Champion in WWE History. On top of that, he has also been in the Main Event of the last three consecutive Wrestlemanias (31,32,33) and possibly will be in the main event for the fourth consecutive time at Wrestlemania 34 in New Orleans. His rapid success in WWE however, has not been received quite well from WWE Fans, as if you watch an episode of Monday Night Raw, you would hear a large amount of Boos he receives while he is making his way to the ring. Personally, I like Roman Reigns as he has improved tremendously in the ring over the years as seen in bouts with AJ Styles, Seth Rollins, The Miz and even Braun Strowman and he is getting very comfortable on the microphone as well. However, I have to admit that I can understand why fans may not completely buy the Roman Reigns character.
His Family Lineage
One great fact about Roman Reigns is that he is the member of the famous wrestling family, The Anoa' i family including members such as Rikishi, Yokozuna, Umaga, The Usos, The Rock, The Wild Samoans, Rocky Johnson, Nia Jax, Tamina and more. So, I know you may be thinking why does this pertain to fans not liking him. Well, some fans take his membership of the family as a reason why he is receiving so much success in WWE. Many fans believe that if he was not a member of the Anoa'i family he would not have received near the amount of success as he has received thus far. Now I dont belive this is a reason to hate Roman Reigns because of a stupid reason such as his family name helping him but I can see why some unreasonable fans would think that. There are many superstars who could fall under this category like Randy Orton, Bray Wyatt, Natalya and more however, they are not hated by fans for their family names like Roman Reigns. Even if WWE decided that they were going to push Roman because of his family name he has certainly lived up to his expectations by fitting into his role very well. Whether fans like it or not he has the look of the Main Event Superstar and he is certainly getting their in-ring wise and on the microphone. However, it seems some fans just can't let go of his family heritage helping him.
Roman Reigns obviously has the look of every girl's dreams (I AM A MALE AND I AM NOT GAY) with the long flowing hair and muscular physique. Certainly WWE Management have realized that and believe that his look suits their top face of the company. I mean take a good look at him, he looks like a movie star, the person you would want on the front of a magazine. Therefore, I can't blame WWE for pushing him as the top guy because of his looks. However, some fans (who may be jealous) believe that the only reason that he is being pushed is because of his looks. Also, as WWE seems to not like the look of their choice, Daniel Bryan, many fans are hating on Reigns because he has the look they want and it is why he is being pushed over other deserving talents. In this way, I kind of agree with them as I believe that a superstar should not be pushed based on their looks but by their connection with fans. Daniel Bryan is shorter than Reigns and does not have that muscular physique Reigns has and it is quite obvious that is the reason WWE has not pushed him to the limit even though he is more popular and more liked by WWE Fans. Thus, Roman will always have that chip on his shoulder by being too perfect (LOL) and looking like what WWE Management wants and fans will never let go that and embrace him.
Along with his family lineage and his look, another thing which will block fans from accepting him as a Babyface is his attitude. Now I am not saying that his attitude is bad or wrong in any way but his real-life attitude may not sit well with many fans. In many of the interviews in which Roman conducts he comes off as a bit cocky and apathetic towards fan's feelings about him. On an interview with WWE Announcer, Corey Graves on WWE Network show, Straight To The Source, Reigns stated that he was "the best performer, in-ring, in the world" which did not sit very well with many fans. That statement he made undoubtedly comes across as quite cocky and arrogant, which is not exactly the characteristics you would expect coming from the top Babyface in the company but rather from a Heel superstar. There is no problem with him saying that or having that attitude but it doesn't necessarily help the case with him winning over fans with that attitude. Fans already think he is being handed too much by WWE Management and neglect him for that and his "cocky" attitude will only cause fans to hate him even more.
Pushed Too Fast
As mentioned before Reigns has accomplished a great feat in WWE thus far, compared to his peers. His rapid rise and the long list of accomplishments in a relatively short time have been one of the main aspects of why fans refuse to get behind him. From the beginning of his time in developmental it was very clear Roman was someone management really liked. In fact, former WWE Superstar, CM Punk revealed in an interview with Colt Cabana, that the original SHIELD was to be comprised of Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose and NXT Superstar Kassius Ohno (a.k.a Chris Hero), however, WWE Executive Vice President of Talent, Live Events and Creative, Triple H handpicked Roman to replace Kassius in the group as management liked him and wanted him to be in the position. Also, during his time in the SHIELD it was quite clear that management saw him as the most valuable member, with him not taking as many losses as his other members and being undefeated for a short stint as well. After the SHIELD broke up he was shot to the main event immediately by getting a chance to fight for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship while Dean And Seth were battling against each other. Giving Roman so much so fast will only make fans turn on him especially when the other members were not pushed as fast as him; as fans would immediately realize that he was the handpicked member all along. Again this is not the fault of Roman, but the fault of management as they were too eager to push him. They could have given him a much slower push to the top like winning the Intercontinental Championship or United States Championship before he went on to win the Royal Rumble and win the WWE Championship; slowly getting fans behind him instead of forcing him on fans.
To conclude, I personally believe Reigns will never reach full babyface status but he is for sure going to go down as one of the top WWE superstars of all time. If WWE ever gives up on his Babyface experiment he could potentially become one of the greatest Heel characters of all time as he has all the tools to be a top heel superstar. Not to compare him to his cousin, but The Rock also struggled at first being a babyface and it was not until he turned heel that the WWE fans truly appreciated and saw his talent. So, maybe Reigns needs the same type of change The Rock had which would allow him to show his full potential and even cause fans to appreciate his talent.