WWE’S LAST HOPE- How to Book Bray Wyatt’s Return
If you’re like me, you’ve just about had it with WWE at the moment. The Brand Split is dead, feuds are pointless, and there are no concrete long term storylines. WWE is treating its audience like they’re incapable of following a week to week storyline and having 54 year old legends battle it out because they’ve been unable to build powerhouse stars over the last couple of years to compete with their star power. It isn’t for lack of talent either. Today’s crop of WWE wrestlers is arguably the strongest in history. The reason why it may not feel like that is because, unlike in the Attitude Era, WWE has forgotten how to book strong characters and tell compelling storylines. The result is a flat product that has resulted in record low ratings and panic among WWE officials. Still, since Wrestlemania, there has been one weekly segment that has caused myself, and a large section of WWE fans, to remain interested in the product. That segment is the Firefly Funhouse, run by Bray Wtatt.
There’s no need to recap the entire Firefly Funhouse. In summary, Bray briefly turned into Steve from Blue’s Clues before revealing his sinister dark alter ego of “The Fiend”. It was dark, disturbing, and hard to watch in the best possible way. It’s since been revealed that these segments are Bray Wtatt’s baby. He created the idea and saved his own career. And that’s what has me concerned. Bray Wyatt is a genius. He’s creative, charismatic, and horrifying. The thing that derailed his WWE career wasn’t of his own doing, but rather WWE Creative’s. But not to worry, I’ve decided to help WWE and help them book Bray Wyatt’s return in 3 simple steps.
STEP ONE: BRAY WYATT NEEDS TO DEBUT IN A HORRIFYING MANNER
This one is fairly simple. The last time we saw the Firefly Funhouse, Bray Wyatt had let the Fiend in as they vanished outside the Funhouse, implying The Fiend was loose. It makes sense for Wyatt’s debut to be as terrifying and built up as possible. Imagine the following storyline for next week’s Monday Night Raw. Raw opens up with a recap of Stomping Grounds, the crew welcomes us to the show but starts off with some Breaking News: several superstars have been found unconscious backstage, but there’s no trace of the perpetrator. Right from the get go, you get a sense of mystery and aura and realize this is not going to be a normal episode of Monday Night Raw. The night rolls on and, during random matches, the Firefly Funhouse theme begins playing in the background. It only happens for a few seconds, but it’s enough to cause a slight disturbance throughout the evening. Rollins is cutting a promo at the end of the night when it happens. The arena goes dark: children’s lullabies start playing on the jumbotron until Wyatt’s new theme, preferably something hard rock, starts. As Rollins prepares for him to come out, Wyatt appears behind him, demolishing him before hitting a new finisher. And just like that, Bray Wyatt is treated like an absolute force and the WWE Universe is going to realize he is a monster to be reckoned with. Obviously WWE won’t do that exact story, but whatever it does do needs to be full of intrigue, mystery and instill fear in the hearts of the WWE universe for it to be successful.
Step Two: DO NOT SCRIPT HIS PROMOS
Part of the reason the Firefly Funhouse was so entertaining for its entirety is because Wyatt was allowed creative freedom to express his character however he wanted. What resulted was some of the best WWE television we’ve seen in years and Wyatt needs to retain that control over his character. As Jon Moxley pointed out in his Talk is Jericho interview, WWE creative can be restrictive and unoriginal. It rarely allows its stars to go off script or define their own character but, with reports that WWE may be softening up in that regard, it needs to allow Wyatt to take control over his promos and what he says. It would be amazing to continue his dual personality and pretend like he hasn’t committed any heinous actions, all the while retaining his creepy aura and implying there’s a more sinister force at work. Whatever it is, let Wyatt be Wyatt and you’re guaranteed at least one good segment a night.
Step Three: GIVE HIM THE LONGEST PPV WIN STREAK IN HISTORY
The title is an exaggeration but seriously, Bray Wyatt can’t lose for a very long time. At least a couple of months. Despite his amazing character and in ring work, he can still be lost in the shuffle if he is treated how he was towards the end of his “Eater of Worlds” run. That’s why it’s so important to establish him as a top act immediately. We’ve seen top heels like Drew McIntryre, Kevin Owens, and Shinsuke Nakamura lose steam quickly because of bad booking and too many losses. This can’t happen to Bray again. He needs to be booked like a monster because he is one. If he isn’t some sort of champion by the end of the year then he is being wasted, He can truly be this generation’s face of fear. But he needs to be booked properly. He needs to be horrifying, he needs to retain creative control, and he needs to be treated like a monster. So WWE, please, Let Him In.
How would you book Bray Wyatt’s return? Let us know in the comments below and make sure to follow @OTHerics1 on Twitter for more WWE content!