From the moment the Stardust character appeared, there were already battle cries calling for him to revert back to the Cody Rhodes persona. These demands multiplied immediately after the death of his father “The American Dream” Dusty Rhodes and it was an assumption that “The Prince of Dark Matter” would lose the face paint and return to his former persona. Instead the Stardust identity remained and had a high profile feud with Stephen Amell, who portrays “Arrow” on the television show of the same name. This feud culminated in a tag team match at Summerslam, the WWE’s second biggest show of the year behind Wrestlmania, seeing Stardust team with King Barrett to take on Amell and Neville.
Many Pro Wrestling podcasters, bloggers and pundits feel the Stardust character has outlived it’s potential. Even Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer feels it has run it’s course and is a “dead character”. Stardust on the other hand is fond of the persona and prefers it to Cody Rhodes. He has even explained how it is actually a tribute to his father as at age 15 Cody refereed for Dusty’s “Turnbuckle Championship Wrestling” with a shirt bearing the word “Stardust”. An old photo of Dusty exists depicting him wearing trunks that also bear the word “Stardust” and Ric Flair recalled the jet he and Dusty would fly on while working for Jim Crockett being known as the “Star Dust”.
So despite many believing that returning the the Cody identity is the best way to honor “The Dream”, there are plenty of reasons why remaining as Stardust means so much to Cody in relation to his father. Eden Rhodes, Cody’s wife and WWE ring announcer, has publicly expressed that she felt fans were being disrespectful about the matter while Cody himself believes that fans wishing for the most difficult event of his life to be exploited on live television to be troubling.
The history of the Stardust character is born from him tagging with his brother Goldust and not being able to pull his weight. He then did what he though was right by finding various replacement partners for his brother until finally he became Stardust the team became successful once again. The character is bizarre and obsessed with riddles and cosmology. Eventually he go off on his own and feud with Goldust. The lengths he has gone to “live the gimmick” are impressive ranging from deleting his brother from social media to wearing his face paint during public appearances to denying the existence of Cody Rhodes. The only exception is when Goldust and he, as Cody, presented a trophy to the winners of “The Dusty Classic” tag team tournament at NXT Takeover: Respect.
Most recently he acquired tag team The Ascension as his henchmen and continues to be a fun midcarder. The man is one of the most skilled in the WWE in regards to wrestling fundamentals and ring psychology. While Cody Rhodes is more suited to be WWE World Heavyweight Champion the chances of that happening even if he were return to that persona isn’t likely. Stardust is both more entertaining, marketable and noticeable to the casual fan. Other than Seth Rollins’ angle with The Daily Show’s Jon Stewart, John Cena’s Media Blitzes and Brock Lesnar on ESPN very few have had the mainstream press he’s enjoyed working with Stephen Amell.
Stardust puts the entertainment in sports entertainment while still keeping the wrestling in pro wrestling.
Tags: Cody Rhodes, Dusty Rhodes, Stardust