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Posted in: Column of the Month
LOP Columns Forum November 2017 Columnist of the Month: Type It's Take: Why Bliss And Miz Need To Turn Face by TypeItInMaan
By Steven Bell
Dec 24, 2017 - 1:33:52 AM

Note From Steven Bell: Each month in the Columns section of LOP Forums, we hold a competition to determine who was the best of the previous month. In other words, the Columnist of the Month. The winner earns the right to present you, the Lords of Pain main page audience, with an example of their work, laying the foundation for what will hopefully, eventually be a permanent spot on the LOP Columns roster.

November brought us a first time winner, though this guy has been making a name for himself in the Columns Forum for months. The gentleman who writes under the name TypeItInMaan is one that you'll be seeing again, I've no doubt.

If you would like to write for Lords of Pain, maybe take your shot at knocking this dude off his high horse, the path to doing so starts with the Columns Forum. You can visit it and begin your own journey by clicking the image below.







TYPE IT'S TAKE:
WHY BLISS AND MIZ NEED TO TURN FACE



Throughout history, some the best characters in the WWE are always somewhat an extension of themselves.

Ric Flair is the "limousine riding, jet flying, wheelin' and dealin,' kiss stealin, son of a gun." Sure, the gold watches, private planes, robes and multiple women may seem like extra window dressing, but it doesn't feel far off from who Ric truly became.

"Stone Cold" Steve Austin is no different. After some decent stuff in WCW, and some forgettable early stuff in WWE, we finally saw who he truly was on a more exaggerated platform. The beer swigging, no filter. anti hero allowed the masses to vicariously live out what we'd like to do to our own bosses and his character never looked back.

WWE has had success capitalizing off of real situations en route to telling a good story. Shawn Michaels "boyhood dream" to become WWE champion in '96 likely never gets off the ground without the true authenticity of his childhood aspirations to become a pro wrestler. Moments of sitting in front of his mirror, cutting promos and idolizing Flair made that journey all the more special when you know the superstar grew up wanting the very prize he was going for on television.

But often times, characters spring up who are not extensions of themselves and become the best at their craft.

Alexa Bliss and the Miz are two of the better heels in the company. Alexa has been shredding people on the mic for the better part of a year and a half. She has so many natural gifts that sometimes takes years for performers to develop. Her uncanny ability to look uninterested, disengaged and disrupt typical fan chants that make other superstars unravel help her to really stand out. These are intangible qualities you can't always learn at the performance center.

For the Miz, the "Hollywood asshole antagonist" role has suited him very well. There are several things that contributed to his turnaround, but most notably it was including Maryse into his matches and finally giving his character a badly needed motive when he ripped Daniel Bryan to shreds in 2016 on an episode of Talking Smack. The Miz now believes in himself as a heel and has gained back any mojo lost in the couple of years he struggled to find his character.

...but should we settle for who Bliss and Miz portray and not the untapped story of who they are?

Part of me wants to agree with the assumed masses who believe that Alexa Bliss and Miz are just fine the way they are on television. In a world where the lines of face and heel are blurred beyond recognition, I should just enjoy the fact that we have 2 that do their job so damn well. Two incredible superstars who pull off an incredible challenge in 2017: Be a heel, be awesome at it and still get people to hate you.

"Bliss is the best heel in years, why would you ever turn her babyface?"

"Did you see Miz's failed face run in 2013?"


Look, I get it. Miz doing his best Ric Flair impression a few years back was laughable at best and Alexa Bliss has the best resting bitch face in the biz. Why even mess with a good thing?

Why? Because the reality of these superstars is a story that needs to be told. We are a nation who embraces the underdog. It's why movies like Miracle on Ice about fresh faced college kids beating the unstoppable Soviet Union in the hockey Olympics tug at our heartstrings. It's why a short stocky kid named Rudy who walked onto Notre Dame's football team and got into an actual game make us believe in the impossible. It's why a part of us always cheered when the nerd snagged the girl over the jerk in all those cheesy 90's teen movies. Hell, we've even changed the trajectory of Daniel Bryan's WrestleMania path a few years back because we believe in David slinging some stones and taking down Goliath.

What we see with the Miz is a reality story that deserves to be told now more than ever. We have experienced his rise, fall and re-emergence now as a workhorse upper mid carder. He is not an "A-list" Hollywood actor wanting people to wait on him hand and foot. He is a Midwestern-born kid from Parma, Ohio who used to be on The Real World and was a 1 in a million shot to get to the WWE in the first place. He's John Cena-lite with the appearances and PR work for the company and has always done anything and everything to be a part of wrestling, including hosting that underwhelming diva search a decade back that produced more trash than treasure. He's about to become a Father for the first time at age 37 and I can think of no better timing than to pull the trigger on who this man really is. It's not 2013 anymore and Miz finally has a true sense of who is the confidence this time around to make it work as a babyface.

How would that manifest itself on television? I don't know. Maybe it takes his wife, his new child, a family member or some other entity to make him come to the shocking realization that the suits and the movies is not really who Mike Mizanin Is. Maybe someone lights a fire under his ass that allows him to make a genuine shift in character like you saw with Seth Rollins trying to gain the validation of Dean Ambrose this past year. That is a story, if booked correctly, could be gold in the same manner that Rollins story was in realizing he had sold his soul to the authority and realized The Shield mattered more all along. A slow but steady transition from Hollywood mega star to family man who grasps that he never needed the bright lights to get to the top? Sign me up to watch that unravel.

However that has to work itself out, I would love to see him take that kind of risk and have that kind of run before hitting his 40's.

Alexa Bliss has been as good a heel as Miz has been for all the reasons I've already listed. Because she's a natural at what she does, there's seems to be a general push back among most people I talk to that pulling off a full fledged face turn would be career suicide. I would have agreed you up until even a few months ago, but then I watched My Daughter Is a WWE Superstar featuring her and immediately changed my tune.

Her story writes itself. 5'0'' blonde girl who knew nothing about the business starts from the bottom learning the craft, overcomes an eating disorder that nearly takes her life and then becomes so good she disrupts a women's revolution en route to being the top woman on RAW. And let's make no mistake about it, RAW belongs to the goddess until proven otherwise.

Perhaps one day we see a more vulnerable and sweet side to Alexa Bliss, one that reflects the actual person and not the bully you see on television who shamed Mickie James for being old and patronized Bayley for being kid-friendly. There is an untapped story of a woman who isn't the biggest, the most athletic or the strongest, but one who packs a punch and can safely say in any promo that she interrupted a women's revolution that was supposed to be about 4 horsewomen who would come to the main roster, take over and leave anyone outside that exclusive group looking second tier.

At the end of the day, wrestling is still an entertainment business. While Alexa isn't in the same league from a wrestling standpoint as the 4 horsewomen, she has shredded each of them in mic work while they have all individually struggled to find their voice at one point or another. We may be in the midst of seeing Alexa show some face qualities on television, but I am looking forward to the day when she is all in on Alexa Kaufman and puts the Bliss away for awhile.

Sometimes, it's important to tell your real story and that time is now for Alexa Kaufman and Mike Mizanin, even in the prime of impressive heel runs that should be left alone.


TYPE IT BACK FAAAAAAAAANS:

Are face turns for Alexa Bliss and Miz a huge business risk or a necessary character evolution?

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