WWE SmackDown 5 Takeaways: AJ Styles Has the Right Face Role

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3. How Seriously Are We Supposed to Take Carmella?

Carmella puts everything into all of her rivalries and backstage segments with James Ellsworth, and I could easily take her seriously as a championship contender. She had a nice feud with Nikki Bella, and I enjoyed watching her self-entitled, arrogant attitude in the build-up to that big WrestleMania match. There’s no doubt that she’s the second-best pure heel on the SmackDown women’s roster behind Charlotte, and she is the exact type of superstar who can reach into a bag of dirty tricks to steal away a championship.

The problem is that I’m not sure if I’m supposed to take Carmella seriously as a championship contender right now, and that all comes down to Ellsworth. His interruption of Naomi to promote Carmella as a possible rival seemed kind of empty, and it seems like her manager has done more harm than good. His interferences with Becky Lynch have been largely ineffective, aside from one instance that allowed Carmella to score a pinfall victory. Beyond that, he’s done nothing, and it’s hard to tell if Carmella will enter a program with Naomi as a result of that mic-grab or if she will feud with Becky after Ellsworth’s constant interferences in matches.

Either way, Carmella needs to seem more like a threat, and I’d like to see her being booked as a more aggressive competitor who initiates fights. If Ellsworth is to stay by her side, he needs to be more effective at interfering on her behalf.