“You stole my opportunity. I could have changed things, man. I could have been that beacon of hope that this world so desperately needs!” – Bray Wyatt speaking to Roman Reigns during their feud.
WrestleMania 33 was probably the single most damaging night of Bray Wyatt’s career. Even after two wins by pinfall against Seth-frickin-Rollins, Bray still hasn’t regained the pop he had with the fans pre-WrestleMania. But although it may seem that the WWE has jumped the shark with Bray, the situation is not hopeless, if the WWE is serious about getting him back over with the fans.
First, let’s examine what’s wrong. Why didn’t the wins against Seth Rollins get him back over? This is the King Slayer here. Two wins in a row, without outside interference, is not a small thing. Rollins held the Undisputed World Title for almost a year and defeated HHH at WrestleMania.
Well, the fans already know Bray can win against great wrestlers. He’s been doing that for a long time, but after WrestleMania, they’ve started to feel that it will never go anywhere. The WWE has had a long history of building Bray up just to knock him down. Basically, he keeps getting tackled at the one-yard line. Finally, frickin finally, he won the World Title and even pinned John Cena to retain it. But then he dropped the belt after a month to Randy Orton at WrestleMania, then they moved him to RAW to make room in the World Title picture for Jinder Mahal.
No one expected Wyatt to hold the belt forever, but a one-month title reign after the Fireflies had been kept waiting for years was a slap in the face. And for obvious marketing reasons on top of that (McMahon wants more WWE Network subscribers in India). Fans felt, and still feel, that Bray Wyatt will never be anything more to Vince McMahon than the guy who gets either pinned or brushed aside for the wrestlers he wants to sell.
In addition to that, the feuds on RAW have gotten a little repetitive. He attacked Finn Balor because he represents false hope; they haven’t really built up any heat between them. Not to be misunderstood, it’s entertaining. But the fans are very aware that this match is filler to whatever they’ve got planned next.
Now the feud with Randy Orton – if we’d had shoots like that arson scene or Bray getting locked in that storage locker, that would get the fans excited again. (As long as it ended differently.)
The rumors are that Bray Wyatt is going to enter The Universal Title picture. He may actually win it. He may even win it from Roman Reigns if Reigns walks out with the belt. But the fans are not going to give much of a pop for the Universal Title feud because they’re expecting Bray Wyatt to eat the pin. This is very problematic, but curable. It will be on the WWE to show the fans that Bray Wyatt can win the Universal Title. This means great promos and a few brutal matches, maybe with hard core rules. Rumors are that the WWE has recently hired a child actor to play a young Bray Wyatt.
That sounds like a big step in the right direction, especially after he’s gotten that big win over Seth Rollins. But at the end of the day, if he is going to challenge the Universal Champion, it can’t end in another loss. If Bray Wyatt loses another huge match at this point, he’s going to be The Eater of Pins for a long time.