Wednesday, 7 December 2011

The Consequences of Turning Heel

I have written a couple of articles about the journey of Bobby Roode, from tag team wrestler to TNA Champion in the space of a few months. Roode had a title match against Kurt Angle at Bound for Glory and, thanks to some cheating, Angle had won. The following Impact, Roode’s tag team partner, James Storm, defeats Angle to become TNA Champion. Two weeks later, Roode defeated Storm to become TNA Champion. The match wasn’t without controversy as Roode hit a beer bottle on Storm’s head to gain the victory.

Since then, Roode has risen to become one of the top heels in the company which, considering that TNA is where heels can prosper is quite an achievement. While Roode’s behaviour has been that of a typical villain, Roode can have a valid argument to betray his best friend. He can argue that he had been betrayed first when Storm took the TNA Championship that should have been his.

Since that time, Roode has managed to alienate his friends at Fortune, Sting and Dixie Carter. While that was expected, Roode had also managed to alienate his family. In an interesting video, Roode’s family and his childhood friend talked over how disappointed they are with the way he has been behaving since becoming TNA Champion. Roode’s reaction to it was that it shouldn’t matter as long as he’s putting money on the table.

While I have been extremely critical of the reason behind Roode’s heel turn, I like what they have done here. TNA showed videos about Roode and his family before Bound for Glory, really building him up. I thought it was a great idea by TNA to add a real life element to what Roode has done. I liked the bit in the video when Roode’s wife had to try to explain to their 2 young boys as to why their father had to cheat to become TNA Champion, betraying his best friend in the process. Yes, we all know that professional wrestling is more of a performance but the children are too young to know that. They believe that it is real and I really felt sorry for Roode’s wife having to deal with that situation.

TNA can go in a few directions on this. You could have more videos like this over time as Roode goes further into darkness and in danger of tearing his family apart. You could have Roode’s family involved in a storyline where they are trying to stop Roode from alienating everyone.

It would be nice if TNA could do more things like this, adding a real life element to their storylines. It makes them more interesting and can make the company seem less of a joke, as viewed by some people.

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