Friday, February 27, 2009
Paul Heyman: "We've Entered The Golden Age of Heels"
Paul Heyman posted his latest column on the UK Sun discussing the great heels WWE has produced recently, even stating who felt was the best. The following is an excerpt of the article:
Never before has Vince McMahon and company been able to feature such compelling villains as WWE is able to present today.
Just look at JBL, for example. John Bradshaw Layfield's performances in his storyline with Shawn Michaels were nothing short of stellar.
It's a very fine line to walk when a bully-heel is charged with punking out a babyface on a consistent basis, all in the name of enticing the audience to want, need, and even crave that babyface to explode and get retribution...only to dangle that carrot in front of the audience week after week after week after week.
But JBL walked that line brilliantly. It's a much harder task for JBL than during his feud with Eddie Guerrero, because all JBL had to do back then was yell and scream about Guerrero, then viciously beat on Guerrero, and the audience would be clamoring for Eddie to get revenge.
It's a lot different now. JBL's character is far more subtle, and while many will say 'Shawn Michaels can make anyone look good', even HBK will admit JBL presented a truly despicable character on television each week on Raw for the viewers to enjoy hating.
Then there's Chris Jericho. Talk about a total transformation. The riot-causing superstar, formerly known as Y2J, addressed every characteristic that made him popular, and stripped those traits away from himself.
You liked the charismatic delivery of his interviews? He went monotone and simply delivered his lines coldly. You liked the cool catchphrases? They're gone, too.
You liked the high-powered music entrance, with the cool pose and rock star turnaround? Gone as well!
All that's left is an articulate villain who delivers his lines with little emotion but lots of conviction. Jericho's contempt for all those who dare to oppose him is a 180 degree turn from the fun-loving Ayatollah of Rock 'n' Rolla whose fan base had few peers in terms of numbers and volume.
While everyone is rightfully praising Roddy Piper's tremendous interview on Monday Night Raw, many are missing the point that one of the key reasons that promo was so effective is because it was delivered to Jericho, in his face, with his character being subjected to such a lecture.
But no two performers have clearly demonstrated the art of heeldom more so than Randy Orton and Edge. Just watch this past Monday's edition of Raw to see the best two heels of the new age showcase their awesome skills.
Adam "Edge" Copeland is the most entertaining heel I've seen in years. He's over the top, knows how to play the fool when necessary, and is so full of himself that you just want to see someone knock him on his ass.
Credit: Chris Cash @ wrestlezone.com