It’s not uncommon for WWE to have a potentially massive superstar on their hands and do absolutely nothing about it. Such is the case with Bray Wyatt, a character so fresh and so intriguing that he captured the attention of the WWE Universe even before he made his Raw debut. He’s a superstar who has captivated audiences worldwide with his kayfabe-blurring character; a true rarity in today’s wrestling landscape.
It’s easy to argue that Bray Wyatt has been given top-notch matches and has headlined many shows, but what irks fans is the fact that he’s only allowed to be a small portion of what he’s fully capable of. Watch how the arena lights up with cellphone lights, aptly deemed his "‘fireflies", when he makes an entrance. Listen to the crowd sing “He’s got the whole world in his hands” in unison as Bray stands in the ring with his loyal disciples: Luke Harper, Erick Rowan, and the monstrous Braun Strowman. And when Wyatt speaks, the fans listen, as they’ve done for all his promos.
Bray Wyatt was white hot when he made his debut; a transcendent superstar who had all the potential to take WWE and pop-culture by storm, only to have his career hit roadblock after roadblock thanks to WWE’s writers and bookers, who are constantly shifting their gaze to other wrestlers. Here are the 10 major obstacles that were hurled at Bray Wyatt, and although I’m sure he’ll overcome them all and rise to new heights of superstardom someday, it’s a shame that the "Era of Wyatt" hasn’t happened already.
10 Bray Wyatt Loses To John Cena at WrestleMania XXX
There’s a reason they call him “Big Match John”, and that’s because even on an event that was clearly wired to be the passing of the torch from the old guard to the new, John Cena was awarded the win against Bray Wyatt and his Wyatt Family. Everything from the opening segment with Stone Cold, The Rock, and Hulk Hogan, to the breaking of The Streak, to Daniel Bryan’s emphatic victory in the main event, was to signal the coming of a new age in WWE. Yet for some baffling reason WWE thought it would make sense for a cult of three large, lumberjack-esque men to be outwitted by one guy in a colorful cap and jean shorts.
9 Daniel Bryan Turns On The Wyatt Family
After weeks of being hounded by Bray Wyatt and his disciples, everyone’s favorite underdog Daniel Bryan would ultimately surrender to Bray in what seemed like edgy storytelling at the time. Unfortunately, the angle only lasted a week and, even though Daniel Bryan made custom boots to go with his new Wyatt Family identity, he would turn on Bray in a Cage Match, and that was that.
8 The Rock Destroys Bray Wyatt at WrestleMania 32
I consider myself one of The People. That’s fan-speak for, “I’m a huge fan of The Rock.” But even I was appalled at how poorly Bray Wyatt was handled at WrestleMania 32. Simply put, he wasn't given a decent feud heading into the biggest WrestleMania of all time, but instead was fed to The Rock (and John Cena, again) during a segment that went on for way too long and consisted of one too many fat jokes.
7 Bray’s Anticlimactic Feud with The Undertaker
Every so often you’ll hear someone say “There’ll never be another Undertaker.” And I guess that’s true, because if you keep oppressing every potential "new Undertaker", what chances do you have of creating another legend like him? Not only were the stakes for this feud lowered by the fact that The Streak was dead, but Bray Wyatt was forced to carry the rivalry all by himself on the road to WrestleMania, with the only promo by The Undertaker being a pre-recorded voice clip from who knows when.
6 Brothers Of Destruction Waste The Wyatt Family
Bray Wyatt would get another crack at The Undertaker, and what better way to solidify oneself as a force to be reckoned with than by defeating The Undertaker and his brother Kane at the 25th anniversary of The Deadman’s legendary career. Unfortunately, WWE had other plans, and the Brothers Of Destruction ended up pulverizing the Wyatt Family.
5 Husky Harris
Before he became the incomparable Bray Wyatt, Windham Rotunda was known as Husky Harris, a lackey member of CM Punk’s revised Nexus faction. This may not be a direct jab at Bray, but it goes to show just how oblivious WWE was to Windham’s talents, labeling him as some kind of cute cartoon character with a goofy name.
4 Disbanding The Wyatt Family
Disbanding the Wyatt Family made absolutely no sense. WWE’s eagerness to capitalize on all three big men as separate entities bombed spectacularly, forcing them to reunite the group within a matter of months. Erick Rowan’s new gimmick as a dangerous albeit humorous silent genius of sorts was inconsistent, as was Luke Harper’s run as a partner to The Authority for a while.
3 Cryptic Messages Or Psychobabble?
It has become standard fare for WWE to ignore Bray Wyatt’s cryptic promos and ominous messages. What started out as genuine riddles that served as omens to the impending destruction that the Wyatts were about to unleash slowly turned into nothing more than promos with cool words sprinkled all over. WWE’s failure to build on Bray’s rich mythology has turned him into a one-dimensional character who screams and yells these warnings but is never able to back them up. These days, his creepy vocabulary rarely strikes fear into the hearts of his opponents as it once did. It’s a shame because Bray writes some of the best promos I’ve ever seen, and if given the opportunity I’m certain he’d build a mythology around his Family that could rival even the best characters on any given TV show, let alone WWE.
2 What Happened To Kane?
Remember when The Wyatt Family “abducted” Kane after their Ring Of Fire match at Summerslam in 2013? Seeing members of a Bray’s cult hoist a monster like Kane up and carry him to the back was a surreal sight. In the weeks to come, WWE.com teased images of Bray in his cabin with Kane’s mask hanging in a corner.
1 Wyatt's Victories Mean Nothing
Contrary to popular belief, Bray Wyatt doesn’t lose all his battles. The "New Face of Fear" has tasted victory against opponents like Chris Jericho, Ryback, Dean Ambrose, Roman Reigns, and even John Cena post-WrestleMania. The problem is, his victories mean nothing. This is by far the biggest problem with Bray Wyatt’s character.
While the man himself is a total package; arguably one of the biggest superstars just waiting to happen, WWE has failed time and time again to give him the proper motivation, reasoning, or progression in any of his feuds. Until WWE realizes that they have a legend-in-the-making right under their collective noses, Bray Wyatt will continue to show only a fraction of his true potential, forever inclined to work for a “creative team” that simply does not comprehend a character as complex as Bray Wyatt.
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