Tuesday, January 3, 2012

2012 Looks a Lot Like Y2J

Courtesy: WWE
By Chad Smart
@chadsmart on Twitter

Well, 1-2-2012 has come and gone and brought with it the return of Chris Jericho to WWE. As I mentioned on the My 1-2-3 Cents Facebook page before RAW started, I was hoping because of the rumors circulating online for the past month about Jericho being the mystery video person and with a picture of Jericho at the Memphis airport from Monday morning that it was all a ruse by WWE to make fans expect Jericho’s return only to stun them with someone else. In the end the mystery man was who everyone expected and the only surprise was how seemingly pointless the entire segment felt.

I’m going to first say I was really hoping against the return of Chris Jericho. It’s not that I don’t like Jericho. It’s more that as I said in the Brock Lesnar post, I’m more interested in the new stars than the returning old stars. Plus, I’m not a fan of bringing in guys right before Wrestlemania so they end up getting a spot on the show while wrestlers who have been putting in their time week after week get left of the show. That’s part of the reason why I am also dreading the inevitable return of the Undertaker.

From WWE.com
Back to Jericho’s return and why it did nothing for me. For the past month enigmatic videos have been playing during RAW promoting the return of a superstar and how it will bring about the end of the world or some other such prophesying. Instead of getting a return of a calculating, maniacal Chris Jericho, we got cheesy grinning, high fiving, run around the ring like a victorious Santino Marella. Not to mention, Chris’ light up jacket that had me thinking country singing Jeff Jarrett was making his return. The fact Jericho said nothing during his seemingly half-hour in the ring also confused me.

I’ve read opinions online that speculated Jericho was trolling the audience and his new persona is going to be an over the top heel who doesn’t realize the fans hate him. I guess I can see that and once we actually see some substance from the character it may work. For Monday night though, this was easily a "worst segment" of the year contender. The whole build up was wasted on something that could have been done during a commercial break with the fans at home not being upset they missed it.

The other aspect of the return I was surprised about was the seemingly lack of interest from the crowd. At first there was a bit of a Y2J chant but when Jericho got the ring it seemed the crowd was waiting for him to say something and got silent. Then when Jericho was trying to rile the crowd up, the section he started with would cheer than go silent as he moved around the arena. Perhaps the crowd was completely stunned by Jericho’s return they couldn’t manage to cheer. Somehow I imagine Chris and WWE management expected a longer sustained response to his return.

The infamous airport pic (from SE Scoops)
Rome wasn’t built in a day so I won’t be too critical of Jericho’s return. Though he has a long way to go to get me back on the train of being a Jericholic. I am curious to see where this leads to in regards to Wrestlemania. I had been told by a friend with some insider knowledge the plan was for Jericho vs. Undertaker at Wrestlemania. Though it now seems WWE is setting up a Triple H/Undertaker rematch, which for the record I really don’t want to see. Internet speculation is Jericho/Punk at Mania, but to me it wouldn’t surprise me to see Punk battle John Lauranitis in some fashion. I guess that’s one positive about this time of the year is not everything is predictable.

Were you excited to see Chris Jericho return? Do you think the return was enjoyable? Share your thoughts on Facebook or Twitter.

2 comments:

  1. Very pleased to see Jericho back in the WWE, but the return was terrible. Underwhelming, didn't speak to the audience. Ran around like a happy child. Such a let down after the promos promised something totally different.

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  2. The return was awesome and I'm very pleased that Jericho is back. Jericho has a great sense of the WWE Universe fan and what he does is just hilarious... a perfect heel.

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