WWE Heel and Face Turns in 2021 List of Superstars Who Turned Babyface or Heel This Year | Smark Out Moment

This list will keep track of all the official babyface turns and heel turns that happen in WWE for the year 2021.

At the beginning of this year, I've made some predictions for who I think will end up turning face or heel at some point. I won't be altering these predictions at all throughout the entire year, but I will be adding some revised guesses quarterly around the big events, so it'll be interesting to see who I'm right and wrong about. Anybody who I'm right about, I'll strike out.

KEEP IN MIND: When a babyface attacks another babyface, this is almost always a heel turn. When a heel attacks another heel, it doesn't hold the same meaning. Villains turning on villains does not make the beaten down person suddenly a hero, but the actions that come out of that dictate whether a turn happens or not.

Also, sometimes, I update the heel and face index, but not as often as the updates you see below.

  • Isaiah "Swerve" Scott refused to shake Jake Atlas' hand in December, but hasn't gone full-blown "point of no return" heel yet in my mind. We can trace his heel turn back to then, though, as he's likely to be a heel going forward.
  • Billie Kay is all over the place. She's a sympathetic babyface-esque character who isn't fully one way or the other. Tweener for the start of 2021. We'll see where she ends up down the line.
  • Tamina is a heel again as she's been teaming more with Natalya.
  • Timothy Thatcher seems to be a babyface after teaming with Tommaso Ciampa in the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic tournament.
  • 1/27 - Jessi Kamea has been paired with Aliyah and booed heavily by the crowd in attendance at NXT, signifying she's now a heel, at least temporarily.
  • 1/29 - Shinsuke Nakamura turned babyface after helping Big E and Daniel Bryan fight off Sami Zayn, Cesaro and AJ Styles on SmackDown.
  • 1/29 - Sheamus is certainly a babyface at least at this point after coming out voluntarily to help babyfaces fight off heels in their 10-man tag team match on SmackDown.
  • 1/29 - Braun Strowman only attacked heels on SmackDown, so he may be a babyface again, too.
  • 2/1 - Sheamus turned heel with a Brogue Kick to Drew McIntyre on Monday Night Raw
  • 2/12 - Apollo Crews has teetered on a heel turn for a few weeks and pretty much sealed the deal here by interfering in Big E's match with Shinsuke Nakamura
  • 2/12 - Cesaro felt more like a babyface after fist-bumping Daniel Bryan. Now, after tagging with him and being booked as part of the babyface side of the Elimination Chamber six, it's pretty solid he's a babyface.
  • 2/14 - Seems like Adam Cole just turned heel on TakeOver: Vengeance Day by superkicking Finn Balor and Kyle O'Reilly 
  • 2/19 - Chad Gable and Otis turned heel on SmackDown by attacking Rey Mysterio after their match.
  • 3/5 - Buddy Murphy wants to align with Seth Rollins again, meaning he's back to being a heel.
  • 3/8 - If we're counting Shane McMahon, he's certainly a heel after the way he's treated Braun Strowman and then ran off like a coward.
  • 4/1 - Isla Dawn turned heel by attacking Emilia McKenzie to align herself with Kay Lee Ray
  • 4/1 - Kenny Williams turned heel by striking his tag team partner, Amir Jordan, with a NXT UK Tag Team Championship belt.
  • 4/5 - Rhea Ripley turned heel on Monday Night Raw by attacking Asuka during their tag team match. 
  • 4/12 - Charlotte Flair is back to being a heel again. She'll likely keep swapping back and forth over the rest of the year per usual.
  • As of 4/13, I'm classifying Karrion Kross (and Scarlett by proxy) as tweeners.
  • 4/13 - Rhea Ripley has already reverted back to being a babyface. 
  • 4/13 - It appears Raquel Gonzalez is a babyface going forward. However, Dakota Kai is still up in the air. Note from 4/27, this may not be the case, as the Capitol Wrestling Center was instructed to boo her.
  • 4/26 - Rhea Ripley is seemingly "whatever WWE wants her to be that week", meaning I'm not updating her as a heel/face constantly. If they're going to bounce her around back and forth, it's not worth updating every time she's booked the opposite direction one week after the next (so don't bother asking about it haha)
  • 4/26: Randy Orton is at least in tweener territory after teaming with Matt Riddle.
  • 5/6 - Dilsher Shanky (now just Shanky) and Veer (formerly Rinku Singh) turned heel to join Jinder Mahal on Main Event.
  • 5/10: Shelton Benjamin is possibly in babyface transition, depending on if his feud with Cedric Alexander expands to other heels. It may just be a heel/heel feud.
  • 5/14 or so - Natalya and Tamina have transitioned to babyfaces after feuding with Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler, becoming adversarial with Alexa Bliss and helping Bianca Belair fight off Jax, Baszler and Bayley on the 5/21 SmackDown.
  • 5/31 - Alexa Bliss started being booked in a more babyface fashion from around this point onward. No real true turning point happened, but WWE certainly kept her against heels from this point on.
  • 6/7 - It appears Jaxson Ryker may be positioned as a babyface going forward, but it's not confirmed yet. He's at least going to be the babyface in theory while feuding with Elias, at the least.
  • 6/14 - Piper Niven (soon to be renamed, most likely) is now a heel after aligning with Eva Marie
  • 6/15 - The way Karrion Kross and Scarlett ragged on William Regal shows they're back to being true heels, if they ever left that position to begin with.
  • 6/15 - Cameron Grimes is definitely a babyface now, after speculation from the past 2 weeks or so.
  • 6/15 - I'm cool with classifying Ever-Rise as tweeners, if not full babyfaces at this point, based on their brewing feud with Hit Row.
  • 6/21 - Jaxson Ryker appears to have transitioned to a babyface role after not only feuding with Elias, but also being welcoming and supportive to Mansoor backstage 
  • 6/22 - It looks like Ari Sterling is now a heel after badmouthing Ted DiBiase. This was pretty much confirmed when he fought Cameron Grimes on 6/29.
  • 6/22 - Mercedes Martinez is firmly in tweener territory while she feuds with Xia Li and Boa, but will team with Jake Atlas
  • 6/22 - Roderick Strong turned heel on NXT with the debut of the Diamond Mine faction
  • 6/24 - Rohan Raja turned heel by aligning himself with Teoman and attacking Oliver Carter
  • 6/28 - WWE is at least temporarily positioning Natalya and Tamina back as heels. It seems at this point, they're probably going to put them in the "whatever we need at the moment" territory, meaning I'm not going to track their minor adjustments going forward. Until they do something very significant (and I mean very significant), it's not worth talking about heel/face turns with them as they're minor turns and nothing substantial.
  • 7/13 - Aliyah may have turned babyface after splitting from The Robert Stone Brand and blowing kisses to the crowd.
  • 7/20 - Hit Row seems to be in a more babyface position now that they're feuding with Legado del Fantasma
  • 7/23 - Toni Storm is now a babyface as of her SmackDown match against Zelina Vega as exhibited by her crowd interactions and her choice of opponent
  • 7/30 - Sasha Banks turned heel by attacking Bianca Belair after their match on SmackDown
  • 8/17 - Indi Hartwell has fully transitioned to a babyface role at this point after teaming with Dexter Lumis against Jessi Kamea and Robert Stone
  • 8/21 - Doudrop cut ties with Eva Marie and likely turned babyface in the process
  • 8/23 - John Morrison is no longer partnered with The Miz and has seemingly turned babyface
  • 8/24 - WWE is definitely treating Raquel Gonzalez as more of a babyface
  • 8/24 - Gigi Dolin and Jacy Jayne are heels going forward, seemingly with Mandy Rose
  • 8/24 - Elektra Lopez turned heel to align with Legado del Fantasma
  • 8/31 - Grayson Waller has seemingly transitioned to a babyface role after teaming with Drake Maverick to face Imperium on NXT
  • 9/6 - Mustafa Ali has been on the babyface spectrum as a tweener for a while. It's fairly certain he's full-blown babyface at least for now, after having helped out The New Day alongside Mansoor against Mace and T-Bar. 
  • 9/9 - Saxon Huxley is now essentially a babyface after teaming with Ashton Smith and Oliver Carter on NXT UK to face Symbiosis
  • 9/10 - Becky Lynch's anti-crowd language was rather firmly heel
  • 9/10 - Katrina Cortez appears to be a heel now as of 205 Live
  • 9/14 - Josh Briggs has been repackaged as a babyface
  • 9/14 - Carmelo Hayes seems to have turned heel alongside his new partner, Trick Williams
  • 9/14 - Andre Chase is now a heel as of the InDex wedding
  • 9/20 - Humberto Carrillo seems to be a heel now after forming a tag team with Angel Garza
  • 9/21 - PENDING: Guru Raaj may now be a heel as of NXT (it's tough to put a lot of weight into it when they treated him like an extra, rather than calling attention to his name)
  • 9/21 - PENDING: Joe Gacy has possibly settled on being a heel with his "safe space" gimmick

PREDICTIONS FOR FUTURE HEEL/FACE TURNS:

** QUARTER 1 PREDICTIONS [FROM JANUARY 1] **

WILL TURN HEEL: Ashante "Thee" Adonis, Asuka, August Grey, Brian Kendrick, Dave Mastiff, Isaiah "Swerve" Scott, Isla Dawn, Kenny Williams, Kevin Owens, Naomi, Ricochet, Sasha Banks, Tamina

WILL TURN BABYFACE: Alexa Bliss, Bobby Lashley, Bray Wyatt, Cedric Alexander, MVP, Natalya, Peyton Royce, Shelton Benjamin

WILL BOUNCE AROUND BACK AND FORTH: Akira Tozawa, Charlotte Flair, Drew Gulak

** QUARTER 2 PREDICTIONS UPDATES [AFTER WRESTLEMANIA] **

WILL TURN HEEL: Erik, Ivar, Killian Dain

WILL TURN BABYFACE: Bray Wyatt, Cedric Alexander, Omos, Raquel Gonzalez, Reckoning/Mia Yim, Seth Rollins, Shelton Benjamin

WILL BOUNCE AROUND BACK AND FORTH: Akira Tozawa, Charlotte Flair, Drew Gulak

** QUARTER 3 PREDICTIONS UPDATES [BEFORE SUMMERSLAM] **

WILL TURN HEEL: Andre Chase, Ari Sterling, Gigi Dolin, Jacy Jayne, Jaxson Ryker, Kevin Owens, Mandy Rose, Naomi, Randy Orton, Rhea Ripley, Shelton Benjamin

WILL TURN BABYFACE: Alexa Bliss, Doudrop, Indi Hartwell, Raquel Gonzalez, Seth Rollins

WILL BOUNCE AROUND BACK AND FORTH: Drew Gulak, Reginald Thomas

** QUARTER 4 PREDICTIONS UPDATES [BEFORE SURVIVOR SERIES] **

WILL TURN HEEL: TBD

WILL TURN BABYFACE: TBD

WILL BOUNCE AROUND BACK AND FORTH: TBD

list of babyface turns and heel turns in WWE in 2021
AUTHOR OF THIS POST: ANTHONY MANGO

The founder, editor-in-chief, head writer, podcast host, and more for Smark Out Moment and all branches under A Mango Tree including Fanboys Anonymous. Tony Mango is not just a pundit/analyst, but also a creative director/consultant, media manager and more. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

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