After watching “KO 365”, I realized just how hard he can be on himself. He’s his own worst critic and that’s how most of us are about our work. It took me years before I felt confident enough reading comments to my articles. I still give away a lot of my weaving and people say I’m not charging anywhere near what I should be charging but I honestly don’t know how to charge more at this point. I see every little flaw in my weaving work and I’m still in awe at how WR has been going since we first officially opened for HIAC. Each Dignified Discussion shocks me and how everyone makes me feel is something that leaves me giddy (and worried) on a daily basis.
Hearing what KO said about his work- what he liked, what he didn’t, and how he knew when a match just didn’t work the way he thought it would, expected it to go down – felt all too real. That kick to the gut of knowing that what you just delivered wasn’t what was ordered or just did not work for some reason. Even if a woven piece doesn’t have any real flaws and everyone else loves it, I see every problem and remember each little issue I had in weaving it. I’m humbled by the way people talk about WR and my weaving but somehow it doesn’t sink in the way it should. I think more wrestlers feel that way than I thought. As I said, KO showed serious angst in his “…365” and that makes me want to see more of them.
I’m sure that most of the superstars beat themselves up when things either go wrong or they seem to go wrong but I want to discuss one specific superstar who I wonder about. There’s no way to get an interview with her but from what I’ve seen, I know she has so much more to offer than we’ve seen on TV and I have to question why that is.
When Dana Brooke was initially announced in a match at a house show, I didn’t think much of it. She’s been the sleeper of the Women’s Division on Raw and hasn’t shown us much of what she can do. Along with many people I’ve spoken to, she might have been pulled up too early from NXT without enough seasoning. She struggled with botches when she first came up to the roster, relying more on her look and build – which is jaw-dropping. The problem is that beyond the in-ring issues, she’s shown us virtually no personality and her mic work has struggled. I have wished from the start that Dana would get over that hump and start reaching for the brass ring but it just hasn’t happened.
Then, I saw her live. As I said, I didn’t think much of her being in a 6 woman tag match. It was a way to get more superstars ring time at a house show – something that happens at every house show I’ve attended. Then something beautiful happened. In front of that small audience, Dana stole the match. She was yelling to the fans, working them hard to get them involved in the match, and did so in a beautifully charismatic way. At that house show, Dana was everything I’d been wanting to see from her on Raw and more. She proved to me that she can absolutely hang with the top of the Raw Women’s Division and I was giddy walking out of the arena. I tweeted back and forth with her a bit about how great she was and she was wonderful on Twitter. She was forthcoming, endearing, and lovely, and this was after I mistakenly ripped on her lipstick being all over her face weeks earlier – which she’d clarified was actually a bloody mouth and not lipstick smeared everywhere. Basically, what I’m saying is that Dana has everything needed to get over as a top superstar on Raw but it’s not coming across through the TV screen.
Being that we are all harder on ourselves than most anyone else can be, I am sure she’s trying to figure out how to make things work for her on Raw. I wish I knew how she could do it because the world is missing a vibrant young woman who has everything needed to go after Bliss but it’s not translating!
The same happened with Neville in that he just wasn’t connecting with the fans in any way as a face but as soon as he was heel he connected. They are trying to push Reigns as a true babyface when he’s obviously a solid heel. It’s just who he is but they’re forcing him into a box he doesn’t fit in. Heck, we can go back to when they brought in Austin as a non-speaking character after knowing that he could be one of the best talkers ever. They finally let him speak and it all fell into place.
It’s happened to numerous superstars in the past which is why I think Dana needs to be full on face on Raw. She was very much face the night I saw her live and she sold every bit of it. I think that she’s a nice girl comes through better than mean girl and they’ve bounced her between heel and tweener too much since she was called up. I don’t want her to be boring like Bayley, but Charlotte plays the muscled girl-next-door and does a great job of it. Maybe turning Dana face is how to bring her connection with the fans.
I’ve talked a lot through the years about superstars who just don’t connect and there’s been a lot of them in recent years who cannot seem to get over that hump. Knowing that Dana has it in her to be a charismatic superstar who just isn’t working in her current role, I want to shake Creative and tell them to pay attention to who she is, not who they are trying to force her to be. The problem with doing that is that it takes a toll on the person. Being one who is their own harshest critic, which most people are, the lack of reaction from the fans and possible negativity elsewhere has to kill any superstar who isn’t where they want to be on the roster and in their career wears down on the psyche.
This is me hoping that they figure things out for Dana before it’s too late because she is something special and deserves to be booked that way.