A while back, Drew McIntyre talked about how much he wanted to face Randy Orton at SummerSlam. His reason, in part, was because Orton was the Joker of his Batman.
Actually, the McIntyre / Orton story is much better than that, for a WWE title match, anyway. It is difficult to beat the Dark Knight and the Clown Prince of Crime.
As we heard in 101 pro wrestling promotions that kicked off their show on Crudo last night (July 27), it would be hard to find two artists and characters to fit more naturally into a wide angle of the Age of “Reality.”
Orton, entitled to call his own shot the championship for his legacy as a third-generation fighter, his summary of past accomplishments and the violent acts he has committed in recent months. He will do whatever it takes to take out his rivals, take the easier path to whatever he wants, and tell us how little he cares what they think of him.
McIntyre, who was not only fired and had to get his job back, but also had to work through injury and be hired as a footman and guardian to be considered worthy of a place on the main event scene. He will come straight to you and tell you what his problem is with you, welcoming any fight, any opportunity to show that he deserves all that he has accomplished.
The kayfabe personality of both men is a consequence of their legitimate backstory, making their characters feel authentic. This is not Vince McMahon trying to convince us that we should love Roman Reigns or John Cena, or telling us that we should hate CM Punk or Becky Lynch. Most of the WWE Universe will be looking for Drew because of his professional journey and because he is an ideal babyface fighting champion. And we will be supporting Randy because, despite having earned the respect of many people in all sorts of ways this year, he inherited a role that many people would kill for, and he knows how to rub that in everyone’s face.
It wasn’t McMahon’s plan, for sure. In an ideal world, Summer Festival would be in Boston, and Reigns, Edge, and Brock Lesnar would be in the mix.
But as Orton and McIntyre showed last night, Vince has landed in the perfect main event for next month’s PPV.
These guys were made for this. And they are just beginning.