Has any character this year been more mis-handled than Edge? The guy has just had really bad luck. First, he is brought back at the Royal Rumble and wins it, thus making him a babyface against the evil forces of Chris Jericho. Then, he is saddled with the “spear” gimmick and made to cut babyface promos that are just not his strength. The character didn’t take off and he was quickly moved from the Smackdown brand.
On Raw they were quick to turn Edge heel. They put him in the feud we never got in 2007 against Randy Orton. This led to a much hyped PPV match where Orton injured himself and this feud quickly fizzled out. Since then, Edge has hovered around the main event, but never getting there unless it was a multiple man match. There was never any hope that Edge would win the big one. His promos became generic heel promos that Edge can cut without any effort.
This is not to say that his work on Raw was bad, it was just uninspired and seemed to be the same as what we have always seen from him. After spending a few weeks feuding with a laptop, Edge was traded to Smackdown and then he began his war on stupidity. Now, this is not the greatest thing to do in wrestling, since you have a character pointing out how ridiculous some of the product is. This war is doing one good thing though; it is getting the crowd on the side of Edge.
With Edge gaining fan support and helping to get over Swagger’s Soaring Eagle (the best manager in wrestling today), we are seeing the babyface Edge take shape like the babyface Randy Orton. Unlike earlier this year, Edge is not having to change who he is. He is not pandering to the fans trying to get them to chant “Spear” and the fans are actually willingly chanting it. He is not straying away from being “Rated-R” but using it to contrast the PG direction of WWE.
Edge is actually a strong choice for Smackdown’s lead babyface role. Unlike Undertaker and Rey Mysterio, Edge can work close to a full time schedule. Edge still works on house shows and can be a legitimate draw on the house show circuit. Edge can bring viewers to SyFy with a “what will he do next” expectation and those viewers will not be disappointed. Most of all, Edge can get younger heels over and legitimate threats in a way that Undertaker’s character does not allow him to and Rey Mysterio is known to refuse to (Dolph Ziggler comes to mind).
The youth movement in WWE is in full swing on Raw, thus turning Randy Orton and John Cena into the old veterans. On Smackdown, Edge can play that same role. Younger talent needs to be the focus of the blue brand and Edge has the ability to help that happen in a way that the latest chapter of Undertaker vs Kane can not.
Can Edge be a top babyface? Let me know your thoughts in the always fun comments! Make sure to check out itswilltime.wordpress.com for more thoughts on wrestling including how to make Bragging Rights work.
Tags: edge, kane, monday night raw, Smackdown, undertaker, Will Pruett, WWE