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Posted in: Oliver's Twist
Oliver's Twist: Why Brie Bella Leaves Me Cold
By Oliver
Jul 30, 2014 - 9:30:00 AM

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Hello, webfriends, and welcome back to the column that spins uncontrollably, Oliver’s Twist! Now, yesterday you might well have read the column posted by fellow Lords of Pain main page writer TripleR about how he now cares about the Bella Twins (or at least Brie) as a result of all the work that WWE have been doing with them over the past couple of months. He laid out the recent history in his column, so there’s no real need for me to go over the work they did on their return – which swung from horrible to miserable in terms of character – or their role on Total Divas, where they both come off as massive stuck up knobheads. Although an argument could be made that Brie is fairly decent on that show – she at least seems less materialistic than Nikki and a bit more humble.

I suppose I should confess, at this point in time, that I’ve always thought the Bella Twins are the worst faces of all time. Watch them act and react to things and you can see them being the most irritating people in the world. They are, I feel, the living embodiment of those bratty teenage girls at school, the ones who hold their nose in the air in the corridor and demand that things are handed to them on a silver platter. They are a pair of Regina George’s, and whilst they have both improved in the ring they are nowhere near as good as they should be for a pair of performers who have been with the company for nearly seven years, all told. Perhaps, then, my judgment is already clouded – but if there’s one thing I’m always ready for, it’s being proved wrong. I never imagined I’d like Alicia Fox as much as I did for the past 12 months, after all, but she made me love her and think she’s one of the best in ring women in WWE right now.

So, I’m approaching this whole storyline between Brie and Stephanie McMahon with as open a mind as it’s possible to have. I might well think that The Authority are being superb heels and am enjoying the work of both Stephanie and her husband, but that doesn’t mean I’m not going to cheer someone going against them – WrestleMania 30 proved that. Stephanie has got being an absolute slimy, dicksack boss down to a tee, making me want to hate her regardless of who she is going against.

So why can’t I do it here?

The real reason lies away from all that background up there and in the very fabric of the story. In theory, Stephanie McMahon abusing her power in order to get back at Brie through her sister is a fine story. I should want to see Nikki fight back and Brie overcome her in some way, shape or form. But that’s theory. In practice, I’m watching one woman call another a bitch, committing assault (not forgetting that Brie Bella quit before slapping Stephanie) and generally being an all-round douche, while the other reacts by going over the top.

And yet, knowing that Nikki is always going to get in trouble as soon as she shows her face, Brie Bella just won’t go away. She keeps turning up, chatting to her sister backstage or buying a ticket to be in the front row, to antagonise her ex-boss. She’s being an absolute knob, shoving herself into situations she’s be best off staying out of for the sake of her sister. What’s she trying to do? Get her job back, one supposes – the job that she quit in a fit of pique so her husband wouldn’t have to give up the World Heavyweight Title he won. I was down on that segment at the time because it was riddled with daftness, but looking back on it with this context it looks even dafter. Wouldn’t she have been better off not quitting and fighting The Authority from inside the company, just like every other mistreated babyface? Steve Austin never ‘quit’ – he might have been fired a couple of times, and of course he took his ball and went home as well, but he never kayfabe threw in the towel. Brie did. Brie gave up. Why should Stephanie even offer her her job back? If she’d been fired, then it might make sense, but she could pretty much just shrug off the request and tell her that she chose to quit.

So then we get onto the last couple of weeks – we had Brie snatching a microphone out of Stephanie’s hand so she could scream obscenities at her. Now, I don’t know about you but I’ve been to a few independent shows, where the crowd is so close to the performers you get a nice shower of sweat after every strike – imagine what would happen if you took any action against one of those wrestlers. Imagine, for a second, that Eddie Kingston is there, next to you, holding a microphone. You yank the microphone out of his hand to call him a bastard. He’s going to hurt you, right? Because you’re in the wrong. Frankly, Brie Bella got exactly what she deserved.

And then what? We have Brie, who physically assaulted Stephanie before and bragged about it, crying wolf to the police because she also got physically assaulted. They’re both the same situation, just one went bawling away to the cops while the other sucked it up. I’m not her to condone assault but…isn’t that twisted logic? Shouldn’t Steph have had Brie banged to rights for what she did, too? I know logic and WWE booking don’t exactly go hand in hand here, but when there are two different takes on it within one story, weeks apart, it makes it kind of obvious, no?

So, following on from that, we get this week – Brie Bella blackmailing her way back into her job by using a flawed assault and battery charge. Why? Umm…I’m not sure. Why would you want a job where you have to work for someone who’s vindictive enough to put your twin sister in handicap matches for weeks on end just because you walked out of the company? What’s she hoping to achieve? Will Stephanie just be fine once she’s been screamed at about ‘BRIIIIE MOOOOOODE!!!!’ a few times on PPV? Is she going to leave them alone? Obviously, at some point, this will have to end, but with what – either Brie or Stephanie is going to have to go, they can’t work under the same roof after all of this. One of these is a performer on a show – the other is the multi-millionaire who runs the show. Who do you think has the power? The amount of questions that are raised in my head from this one match is phenomenal, and they almost all end negatively for Brie. Oh, and one more – I’m pretty sure WWE legal could get Steph off of the charges. Heck, they’ve wormed people out of far more than this, right?

And hey, you know what else? Stephanie is a magnificent performer. She delivers her lines on point, she’s terrific at getting heel heat and yet doing it in the way that makes sense – heels always seem to hold the logic card in WWE for some reason – and is managing to get this angle over almost off her own back. Her ability to cry on cue is perfect, too. She’s generating heat so nuclear that it’s passing itself off onto anybody that goes against her. Do you truly believe that Brie is garnering all these face pops? In my book, Steph is doing the leg work here – she’s so hated that it’s near impossible to cheer her. It’s just a shame that all this is getting transferred onto such a poor performer on the opposite side of the ring – I don’t find Brie to be an engaging personality at all, and once this angle is done I can’t see the cheers remaining with such intensity. Oh, and for the record – I don’t necessarily mean poor in the ring. I mean poor as a character. People don’t naturally want to cheer for either Bella twin – when the opponent isn’t someone with as much heel heat as Stephanie will she be able to keep the cheers going? I’m dubious.

I have to confess, I’m not expecting much of the SummerSlam match between these two – neither are the greatest to lace a pair of boots, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see a match verging more towards catfight than wrestling clinic. In fact, I think the end of Raw on Monday is probably what we’ll get, just over a longer period. They might prove me wrong – I hope they do, and a re-enactment of the WrestleMania 30 opening match between their respective other halves would be fascinating and an interesting way to drape the match in a much bigger story than it already is.

But I won’t be cheering on Brie. That much is for sure.

What about you guys - do you want to see Brie get her revenge on Stephanie? Or are you finding her insufferable? Leave me a comment below, or drop me a Tweet (@MrOlliB) or an email using the link at the top of the page. Until we twist again, stay safe when crossing the road and drink more hot chocolate! Ciao!

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