Roman Reigns returned to WWE on the Feb. 25 edition of Raw and announced that his leukemia is in remission. Going forward, Reigns’ character could have a few tweaks, and it sounds like we could be in for the best version of “The Big Dog” yet.
For the past several years, Roman Reigns has been WWE‘s top full-time star, and he was greatly missed on Raw during the four months when he was out kicking leukemia’s ass for a second time. Reigns’s importance to WWE cannot be understated, as the stoic, bad-ass leader of The Shield has been the main force putting heels in their place and putting on great matches with other men on the “Red Brand”.
Reigns has elevated wrestlers like Braun Strowman and Finn Balor with his matches, and he carried Raw when Brock Lesnar was “missing in action” with the Universal Championship. But for as awesome as Reigns has been as a “man of few words” and one of WWE’s most serious characters, seeing a more laid-back side of Reigns on Raw could be a welcome addition to WWE’s flagship show.
In an interview with Jimmy Traina on the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast, Reigns, who has been appearing in more movies and TV shows lately (mostly those geared to kids, since they can’t get enough of Roman), spoke at length about his character in WWE.
When asked if “Joe Anoa’i”, the man behind the character, could be seen on-screen more in the portrayal of Reigns, the former Universal Champion said, transcript via SI.com’s Jimmy Traina,
“But also with the storylines and character, because we have introduced Joe, especially last week, I felt like there was a lot of Joe within the promo of Segment One. Even with the interaction with Seth [Rollins], I just feel like with me integrating the characters and who I am in real life and who I am on stage, for me to kind of mix them, it allows me to laugh at Roman a little bit and have a little more fun and be a little more loose as opposed to the stoic brawler. If you know me in real life, I’m kinda like my cousins [The Usos], I’m a bit of a clown, I act up, we goof off a lot. We’re silly. We’re big kids. We’re always goofing around, trying to laugh. If I can add that in the next couple of years, those layers of being chilled out, little more comedy, a few different emotions, I think that would be pretty neat.”
It would be “pretty neat”. In fact, it’d be amazing.
In interviews, media hits, and backstage segments, Reigns seems like such an awesome, chill guy with great comedic timing. Down-to-earth people tend to be the coolest to listen to, and Reigns mixing in his character’s serious side with his real-life “goofy” side would be perfect. Wrestling fans, especially kids who look up to Reigns as a role model, would probably love to see this, because it’s awesome when someone with principles and strong values like Reigns can also show that it’s OK to be funny and have that kind of friendly back-and-forth with friends.
Dean Ambrose’s future in WWE remains unclear, but even if he leaves, Reigns will still have Seth Rollins and others to bounce off of, showcasing that comedic side of him. It doesn’t have to be in-our-face or detract from the bad-ass Reigns we’ve come to know and love, but it’d be fantastic to see Reigns portray someone who is equally bad-ass and silly.
It’s been fantastic to see Reigns back on our screens, and the possibility of him being allowed to have more genuine fun with his on-screen character looks like a huge win-win for both Roman Reigns and the WWE Universe.