One reason why a large portion of the WWE fanbase reject Roman Reigns is because it seems his position as a top good guy is forced and not a real representation of their feelings. Of course getting somebody over in a scripted show is all about writing them to succeed, but there are little things WWE does that really annoy people and it’s not just reserved for Reigns.
A fan on Reddit is claiming that a sign they brought to last night’s RAW was removed by security because it had a negative message about the former Champ. “Went to Raw last night. Took a sign that said ‘If Roman wins, we complain online,'” says Reddit user WastedKnowledge.
“Right before the main event, a WWE employee flags me down. (I say WWE employee because he was wearing a WWE shirt along with giant headset and you could tell he was communicating with the back). He says ‘Give me your sign or you’re out of here.'”
The fan says they tried to reason with the ’employee’ arguing that it wasn’t against Reigns and was just a joke, but they weren’t being heard.
“He replied ‘Do you want to go?’ So I handed it to him.”
While this incident doesn’t seem to have been independently verified, it certainly wouldn’t be the first time that something like this has happened. Long gone are the days when WWE encouraged free speech regarding fan signs. Today if you bring anything that might be deemed offensive, references a star who has fallen out of favour with the company, or is overly negative or ‘smarky’ you risk having it confiscated.
If true however this latest incident seems to have gone a step further – WWE policing who fans are allowed to dislike. An absolute absurdity that compounds the Roman Reigns problem. Fans do not want to be explicitly told who to like. Creative writing and booking, prodding viewers along in an enjoyable way is one thing. But outright dictating who to cheer is another. WWE is supposed to be fun.
There may be more to this story than meets the eye (the sign getting in people’s way etc), but when was the last time you heard of this happening with a positive John Cena or Reigns sign?
One person who continues to criticize the handling of the good looking Samoan is former WWE commentator Jim Ross. In a recent podcast he argues that Reigns was booked badly for two Royal Rumbles in a row:
For me, I wish I didn’t know him as well as I do because I really feel badly for him. I know how badly he wants to be where he’s going or trying to be placed. He’s got a good work ethic. He’s a guy who weighed 320 or 330 pounds, playing college football at Georgia Tech and he’s worked really diligently to get himself in great shape, so I know there’s a commitment there. I know he’s a good athlete. I think he’s a good citizen, from all I can tell. I think he’s a good choice for elevation and for promotion and advancement, but I just believe that the way he has been booked has not been in his best interest as it has worked out.
He was a victim of the way he was booked at the Rumble. That would be like blaming Cam Newton for not throwing more touchdown passes when they weren’t calling the plays. He’s following the orders. He’s running the plays that he’s told to run, but he’s getting an amazing amount of heat for doing what he’s told.