John Cena leads the Cenation. CM Punk is the voice of the voiceless. The Undertaker is a dead man walking. What these three men, among many others, have in common is that they each have a gimmick/personality that makes them memorable. It isn’t forced but is an extension of their personality outside of the ring and WWE Universe. When a gimmick or persona is natural, the fans can tell that the person in the ring is truly enjoying it and is someone who they can relate too.
The personalities that the superstars portray are an extension, in some way, of themselves outside of the company. A fan has to believe in who they are watching. They have to feel some sort of connection with a superstar. It may not always be something easily recognizable but it is there. Let’s have a look at a few…
When Zack Ryder first made his debut, I honestly couldn’t stand him. Those one-legged trunks drove me nuts! As I watched him wrestle and develop into the broski that we all know and love, my opinion of him changed greatly. I saw him as a young guy who was simply just having fun living out a dream. The kids love him and adults love him, the use of social media playing a huge role in his popularity. He is cutting edge and up to date on what is trendy and popular. Anyone following him on Twitter, YouTube, or Instagram knows this already. Zack Ryder is the life of party and that charismatic guy that everyone wants to be around.
John Cena is just an all-around good guy and that is why so many people love (and hate) him with such passion. His honesty and integrity give him a superhero like quality that makes him amazingly popular with the young fans in the WWE. John Cena is a David in what can feel like a world full of Goliath’s. He represents what can be good about people. Watching him in a match is compelling and fans are invested in seeing him,whether they want him to win or lose.
CM Punk is probably the one superstar that is more relatable and closer to reality than all the others. What is most appealing about him is that, aside from the obvious embellishments for television, he is a real person. CM Punk is someone who didn’t have it easy in life all the time, he was bullied and picked on simply for being himself. Being bullied is something that hits home very much for fans everywhere (myself included) and that reason is why his fan base is so diverse and expansive.
You don’t really see the fans saying ‘Man, I really identify with Tensai. I just love his style.’…
Even though it is sports entertainment, it doesn’t mean that there can’t be things rooted in reality. The wrestlers are more accessible than ever now, due to social media and fans love to know that the people they idolize have some of the same experiences and qualities that they do.