Let's Fantasy Book Special: Wrestlemania Fallout
If there is one thing I cherish most about professional wrestling, it's kayfabe. For those unaware, kayfabe is the suspension of disbelief in professional wrestling, the belief (whether actual or not) in the events portrayed in the ring, on the mic and backstage as reality. Kayfabe is the lifeblood of professional wrestling.
I cherish kayfabe above all else in professional wrestling.
Kayfabe is tricky as most individuals know in the back of their heads that what they are watching is a work, but for a split second, you find yourself wrapped in the belief that Dean Ambrose really hates Chris Jericho's guts. That being said, as a lad, I knew that Rikishi didn't really attempt to murder Stone Cold by hitting him with a car. Also, I had a pretty strong inkling that D'Lo Brown didn't really cause a miscarriage in the ring... but boy I wanted so bad for those things to be reality.
However, the life of a booker isn't entirely dictated by Kayfabe. In fact, sometimes reality is not only stranger than, but stronger than fiction. Numerous times in history, WWE has been forced to change direction of a storyline due to a very real situation taking place outside the ring. Unfortunately, sometimes these swerves lead to very disastrous changes in character or halted momentum for a wrestler about to make it big.
Unfortunately, Let's Fantasy Book finds itself in the same situation.
Before each edition of Lets Fantasy Book, we briefly touch on the rules of our year long project. In short, if something happens in “real life,” we have to abide by it. For example, Daniel Bryan was in the middle of a push in our fantasy project. Since he is now retired, we cannot continue to book him in the company.
Now, several very real occurrences have taken place that are going to affect our project going forward and they have some very serious consequences in our booking. Rather than briefly touch on this situation during next week's edition of Lets Fantasy Book: WWE Payback, we will be discussing the ramifications in this special edition, all while keeping kayfabe in tact as best we can.
Shane McMahon's Debut
I received an email in my inbox asking me a very simple question... “Why did you ignore Shane McMahon at Wrestlemania?” A simple question deserves a simple answer. Quite frankly, no one could have predicted that of all people to return to the WWE prior to Wrestlemania, Shane McMahon would be it.
One thing I've prided myself on with Let's Fantasy Book is not comparing my product to the one that is actually on television. However in this one instance I think it's very important to point out one very obvious fact: Shane McMahon's storyline on WWE television has been absolutely ridiculous.
He lost to the Undertaker but still ends up running Raw. He's making matches for shows that he no control of. His dad is no where to be seen and what's worse, he's being portrayed as the savior of the company when television ratings for the third hour are the worst they've been all year. It doesn't make any sense at all.
Would we be able to better utilize Shane on the main roster? Perhaps. However with such uncertainty with what exactly his role is going to be in WWE, placing him in a position of power on screen is unnecessarily risky. In the world of Kulture Shocked Wrestling, Shane can sit beside me on the creative team.
Shane McMahon's “Callups”
With half a dozen new faces suddenly on WWE television, WWE Payback has the potential to become a very bloated and nonsensical show. Unfortunately for these new faces, it's very unlikely they'll find themselves performing on Payback for a multitude of reasons, the primary of which being there simply isn't room.
Luke Gallows, The Vaudvillains and company will get their time in the sun, but it's going to take a little longer than expected, thanks in part to the situation with the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. As a reminder, in Let's Fantasy Book, feuds are assumed to be pushed during editions of WWE Raw and WWE Smackdown unless otherwise stated.
Adam Rose and Konnor's Suspension
Lets get this out of the way: Who gives a shit about about The Ascension? Certainly not me. Let Viktor job out on Smackdown by himself for a while. Adam Rose however, is a much worse and tragic story. I am faced with a very important and quite frankly tough decision regarding his future
Behind the scenes, we had very big plans in place for Adam Rose. Rose, much like Stardust was destined for a huge push in terms of his character and his place in the company. However, what promise do I have that Rose won't toss a wrench in our plans again. He's broken policy in years past, what guarantee do I have as a booker that he won't do it again.
Putting gold around the waist of the Party God was always a very risky proposition, even more so now.
Do I believe that Rose can, and will continue to play ball? More importantly, what message do I send to the rest of the locker room if I were to continue with Rose's push? Spoilers: It's not a very positive one.
Rose leaves me no option. I have no choice but to suspend his push and reconsider him for his role in the WWE Money in the Bank Pay-Per-View. Perhaps, in time if Rose continues to prove himself a dependable and exciting worker, then we may be able to reexamine his role in the main event scene in the future.
The WWE World Heavyweight Championship
Bray Wyatt has a potentially serious calf injury. Bray Wyatt recently won the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. WWE has given zero indication as to how serious this injury is. This is a huge problem.
Bray Wyatt was a linchpin for the long term health and the new vision of our company. His ascension at 'Mania marked a new beginning for his character and the transition from the old guard of the Undertaker to the Wyatt Family as the top stable in the company. His injury could not come at a worse time.
So... what do we do. Seeing as we don't have the benefit of the access to Bray Wyatt, we are unable to determine how severe his injury is. This forces our hand. If he is unable to compete at WWE Payback we will have no choice but to strip him of the title and render it vacant.