By Todd Matthy
WWE and TNA listen up. Since both organizations are trying to be drama rather than wrestling, I think it’s about time you learned something from drama. Something that will both create compelling television and give old-school wrestling fans what they want. And all you need to do is watch HBO’s “Game of Thrones.”
So what can a show about a world with dragons and long winters teach the writers at WWE and TNA? Why how to create a villain of course. All you have to do is look to Joffrey Baratheon.
“Bring me his head!” with those words Joffrey Baratheon is elevated from a little snot to George R.R. Martin’s equivalent of the Emperor. When first meet Joffrey he is a pouty-lipped brat of a Prince who cries to his mother when he doesn’t get his way. As the show progresses, we start to see Joffrey has a little bit of a vicious streak. For example, when he sees his betrothed, Sansa’s little sister Arya practicing sword fighting with a butcher’s son, Joffrey decides to show off his manhood by taunting and cutting the boys face. Arya has enough and whacks him with a stick prompting him to attack her. Unfortunately for him, Arya’s pet dire wolf bites his hand. When confronted by Arya he cries and begs forgiveness. Because of this incident Arya’s wolf has to flee, Sansa’s wolf is killed in it’s place, and Joffrey’s bodyguard kills the butcher’s boy. All after Joffrey lies to his parents about what happened.
When the King dies, Joffrey’s mother immediately places him on the throne and declares him King. When Sansa’s father (and star of the show), Lord Eddard Stark, learns Joffrey is a bastard (literally) he is arrested. Sansa begs Joffrey to show mercy and instead has him beheaded in front of her. And to pour salt on the wounds he forces her to stare at her father’s severed head and has his guards beat her for defiance. Scumbag doesn’t even begin to define this kid, you want to strangle him. Something you should want to do to all wrestling villains.
So how do we bring a Joffrey Baratheon into the colorful world of wrestling? Easy strip away the fantasy trappings and take the attitude. Start with a basic cowardly heel (bad guy wrestler) that is good as a wrestler and a talker. Have him whine and complain about the lack of opportunity for advancement in the organization. While this happens have start scouting one of the top babyfaces (good guy). Finally, in the babyface’s hometown, have his wife and children in the audience and let the heel attack and handcuff the hero to the ropes and beat him mercilessly to the point where the child jumps the guardrail to save their father. The heel will force the child to cry for mercy then break the babyface’s arm right in front of his child. Then, to rub salt in the wounds, he taunts the child and the family as the police arrest him.
The next week, announce the babyface as being out of action and that his children are scarred. Meanwhile, the heel is fired but will somehow show up at shows and taunt him. Eventually, once our hero is well enough, he will request the heel be reinstated and the two will have their show down. There you have it. Simple but effective, your turn WWE and TNA. Follow Mr. Martin’s formula and you’ll be fine. Unfortunately, they probably won’t.