AEW producer Arn Anderson was a recent guest on Busted Open Radio where The Enforcer discusses the dynamics between heels and faces in the pro-wrestling industry. Anderson says that it becomes harder to care for a talent when they live in the grey area, explaining that the audience will connects more when the character is clearly a bad guy or a good guy.
Everybody hates when you take a liberty or somebody is being picked on for whatever the reason. All those things that went into making a heel. If we really wanted to concentrate on making heels...number one you have to create people that they like. This whole grey area things that's been going on...I'm sorry...when I watch a movie I want a black hat, and I want a white hat. If everybody is grey, everybody has got their grey hats on...how am I supposed to pick out who I like and who I don't like unless they do something unlikeable? Or likable for that matter. When you quit having heroes and you quit having dragons and dragon slayers...that's where everything for me starts to go south.
Anderson further his point by using former WWE champion Roman Reigns' infamous "Suffering Succotash" promo as an example.
When you think the proper thing for a talent to say that looks like Roman Reigns and is already battling the male audience because all their wives and girlfriends are mesmerized by this guy cause he's so handsome...when you think "suffering succotash" is a brilliant move for him to say on a promo, then you made have made a mistake that day. That's one of those things that they'll never forget. When and what alternate universe would that guy have ever said that in the real world? The question is never. So it's on all of us that are producing to create bad guys and good guys, and once you've established who you like and who you don't like it's a lot easier to move those chess pieces around on the board in a positive way.
Listen to Anderson's statement below.
"The Enforcer" @TheArnShow told @davidlagreca1 & @bullyray5150 storytelling in pro-wrestling is desperate for true faces and true heels.
Look no further than that infamous Roman Reigns promo for proof. 🗣️ pic.twitter.com/p7k5CohQQj
— SiriusXM Busted Open (@BustedOpenRadio) November 15, 2019