Wrestler's Court: Cesaro's Growing Pains After WrestleMania XXX | Smark Out Moment

Wrestler's Court: Cesaro's Growing Pains After WrestleMania XXX

Posted by Oliver Court Tuesday, May 13, 2014
Case of the Week - Cesaro's Post-WrestleMania Troubles

Cesaro WrestleMania XXX 30 Andre the Giant Battle Royal winner King of Swing Antonio WWE
At WrestleMania 30, Cesaro had a huge break-out night, breaking out of the Real Americans, officially turning face, and winning the Andre the Giant Battle Royal, all to huge crowd support from the Superdome crowd and its various 'Cesaro Sections'. The night after 'Mania, Cesaro again was over huge with the crowd, as we hummed along to the memorable Real Americans theme, did the fist pumps, chanted 'King of Swing', and went crazy when Cesaro officially announced himself as a Paul Heyman Guy. All the anger at Heyman's association with the Streak-conquering Brock Lesnar disappeared, as everyone began to anticipate all the awesome things Cesaro and Heyman would be able to accomplish as a pairing. Cesaro had an amazing WrestleMania weekend, and looked to be in line for a huge push as a face, even with a heel Heyman managing him.

WrestleMania XXX 30 Cesaro Section Andre the Giant battle royal Big Show
Yes, a month later and I'm still bragging that I went to WrestleMania.
However, one month on, Cesaro appears to be bogged down in the 'no such thing as faces and heels' policy that WWE is now operating on. Fans want to cheer for him and his insane offense, but his character is becoming more heel-ish every week, and Heyman's association has been distant at best so far. Without a clear direction for his character, and with little to no Giant Swings since 'Mania, Cesaro's crowd reactions are becoming weaker, and while I still have complete faith in his ability to jump up to the main event tier, the road to the top may be a little more bumpy than what was expected after WrestleMania. So what's going on with Cesaro, and what could be changed to better define his character?

First off, the whole 'tweener' thing has to be ditched. Every wrestler needs to be defined as either a
face or a heel, good guy or bad guy, because that's what works in the context of pro wrestling. Just because Game of Thrones has loads of excellent 'shades of grey' characters doesn't mean the same thing is going to work in the campy world of wrestling, and Cesaro is proof positive of that. He was gaining huge babyface momentum heading into and during WrestleMania weekend, as the crowds wanted to react positively to his incredible feats of strength and athleticism. The same was true of The Shield, and WWE was right to pull the trigger on them and make them full-on faces, but Cesaro has been left in a no man's land, where he plays to the crowd to signal his big moves, and then a few seconds later is scheming with his heel manager. The crowd doesn't know how to react to Cesaro right now, and it will hurt his momentum and match quality if something isn't done about that soon. Whether he turns fully babyface, or goes back to the heel character, Cesaro needs a strong identity so the fans can connect to him and his matches, and so that his feuds can become better defined.

Cesaro Paul Heyman WWE WrestleMania 30 XXX new theme King of Swing
Cesaro's association with Heyman may be doing more harm than good.
And there's another problem with Cesaro's post-Mania run; his double feud with Jack Swagger and Rob Van Dam. Many people were expecting a feud with Swagger to keep Cesaro looking strong, but RVD needed to be kept busy somehow, and he got drawn into the feud. It turned from being a logical, heated rivalry coming out of a breakup to 'I don't like those other two guys, let me beat them up'. Cesaro was working as a face against Swagger and a heel against RVD, and again, it was confusing to watch. They got a good match out of it at Extreme Rules admittedly, but no-one came out of it looking particularly impressive, and Cesaro especially has no obvious feud to go to now. Again, it might only be a blip, but if left unchecked, Cesaro's lack of strong direction could lead to bigger problems. I'm not saying he's going to be stuck in the mid-card for life with Kofi Kingston et al, because he's way too talented for that, but he might be in for a longer stay than anticipated.

WWE Extreme Rules 2014 Triple Threat Cesaro Jack Swagger Rob Van Dam Paul Heyman Real Americans Zeb Colter
Good match, but was it worth it?
And one final niggle; that theme. Oh man, that jobberiffic music. Minus the sirens, which are a good 'glass shatters' identifier to get the crowd to pop, that theme is something I'd expect Curt Hawkins to come out to (Hawkins actually has a pretty good theme, but no-one will ever hear it), not a future main eventer. It seems like a small issue, but themes affect the live audience a lot more than is apparent from watching on TV, so Cesaro's crowd reactions are tied to his music. If the music isn't good enough, people won't make as much noise and won't be as excited for a Cesaro match as they otherwise would. I'd say go back to the old Dean Malenko sound-alike theme now, but I would have preferred sticking the Real Americans theme on Cesaro and giving Swagger something new. The RA theme is memorable and gets the crowd excited, but Cesaro's new theme is a damp squib that no-one would want to cheer for, and that will have an effect on his overall popularity.

Just to be clear, I think Cesaro is a top notch performer, and quite possibly the best pro wrestler in the world right now, but it's obvious he's going through a bit of a rough patch creatively right now. Let's hope WWE make any necessary changes and get the guy back on track to the main event.

So that's my view, but I want to hear what you have to say as well. The comments section below is yours to share your views about Cesaro, or anyone else you've got an opinion about from this week in pro wrestling.

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