WWE: The James Ellsworth Experience


Everyone appears entitled to fifteen minutes of fame, has the criticism of James Ellsworth had been warranted or is he simply living out the dream so many WWE fans wish they could have had?

He doesn’t seem to fit the part. He has no muscle mass, no apparent physical qualities that make him a considerable talent, and yet the James Ellsworth experience has garnered more and more attention as the weeks have gone by. Fans were first introduced to him when he appeared on Raw and was absolutely destroyed at the hands of Braun Strowman. He was a complete afterthought in WWE. The guy was simply tossed around the ring, the epitome of an enhancement talent that no one would give a second look. But something changed as it applies to Ellsworth. He became popular, apparently for nothing more than someone that was in the right place at the right time.

What can be said about James Ellsworth that hasn’t been said? Is he physically gifted with the tools that make fans want to watch him? Not particularly, but that doesn’t seem to matter. When he appears on screen, whether he is being laughed at or laughed with, Ellsworth generates a reaction. Of course, there are fans that are annoyed by his presence. In fact, each and every time he’s shown on screen it grinds their gears. The reason for feeling this way is quite simple: each time Ellsworth is shown onscreen, it takes time away from someone that deserves to be used on screen with some regularity. It’s hard to argue with that belief, as men such as Apollo Crews that have all the tools necessary to be used regularly with Smackdown Live has fallen by the wayside.

Ellsworth‘s use is certainly intended to generate a reaction. And whether fans love him or loathe him, he’s getting air time. What also could be why fans are gravitating to him are that he truly is an underdog. While men like Daniel Bryan and Sami Zayn are booked to be underdogs, Ellsworth is completely out of his element and a true underdog. Fans gravitate to him because, in a number of ways, he is the everyman. Fans can relate to him because he is very much like them. He looks and acts like every fan that works a 9-5 job, pays taxes and works to feed their family. He isn’t muscular or even in shape.

Ellsworth appears to be a fan who gets to hang out with the real stars on Smackdown Live. He was given a limited opportunity, and managed to generate a reaction. Each time he appears next to Dean Ambrose or against AJ Styles there is no logical reason as why fans should cheer Ellsworth and jeer Styles, but they do.

Fans are drawn to the fact that this scrawny, uncoordinated man is onscreen, being berated by other Smackdown Live talent, only to get the better of them whether intentionally or not. When he is in a match, fans completely lose their minds as they cheer him on, in hopes he will overcome the odds and win. Whether it’s one win in his career or one win that creates a buzz and generates a fan reaction, he is creating an experience that many fans have to wish was them.

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As Survivor Series came and went, Ellsworth was given the title of ‘team mascot’. He wears that as a badge of honor, and though it doesn’t necessarily represent anything of substance, it was more time for fans to get behind him. For all the critics and naysayers, they have to see some value in what this has meant to WWE television. No one pretends he is the best wrestler to come into the company, or even the most memorable. WWE has taken a wrestler that owns his own promotion, and turned him into someone that fans have gotten behind. He’s clearly flawed, and that’s perfectly fine because much like the fans that watch, James Ellsworth being flawed is something to be applauded.