This shouldn’t be that big of a hot take, but The Fiend Bray Wyatt absolutely should be competing for World Championships.
Ever since The Fiend defeated Seth Rollins for The Universal Championship at WWE Crown Jewel, I keep hearing people say that Bray Wyatt doesn’t need to be anywhere near the title picture. Some say he never should have won The Universal Championship in the first place, especially with the way WWE decided to take the title off of him. Some will say that it doesn’t make sense for Bray Wyatt or The Fiend to care about something like winning World Championships.
To those people, I say let’s just pump the breaks for a second, because I can’t buy that argument. If you truly think about the motivations of the character, it makes perfect sense for The Fiend to go after Championship gold.
If The Fiend had been booked in the past more like Heath Ledger’s Joker in The Dark Knight, then I’d agree with the thought that he shouldn’t care about titles. Just like the Joker not caring about a gigantic pile of money, and setting the stack ablaze. However, The Fiend isn’t just out to watch the WWE burn. He may be a nearly unstoppable monster, but there is far more to this character than him performing random acts of violence.
The Fiend clearly is not a one-note character who is out to cause destruction and mayhem. This man, or this being, has a wide array of emotions and psychological disorders created by past failures and abandonments. Mind you, I’m not going to sit here and pretend to be an expert on The Fiend. I have my theories, but I’ll never claim to know everything that’s going on inside Bray Wyatt’s head.
I am confident in a couple of things when it comes to The Fiend. One, he doesn’t choose his victims at random. This is a man with plans, aspirations, and desires. More often than not, it’s revenge on his mind. Seth Rollins, Finn Balor, John Cena, Daniel Bryan, and Braun Strowman have all felt the wrath of Bray Wyatt as The Fiend carried out a measure of vengeance for past wrong-doings against his alter-ego.
However, ever since he started this journey last Summer, The Fiend has evolved. He’s either learned, or showed the willingness, to love. The creature begging to be let in by others, has opened its monstrous heart and let someone (and something) into his own little world. The who is Alexa Bliss, and the what is The Universal Championship.
I don’t think for one second that Bray Wyatt has forgotten about Roman Reigns stealing his beloved Universal Title away from him at Payback, but that’s a story that will have to find a conclusion another day. Confined by the rules of the brand split, Bray Wyatt now finds himself starring down another ghost from his past, who just so happens to be holding a suitable replacement for the empty space left inside The Fiend after his loss to Roman Reigns. That man is the WWE Champion, Randy Orton.
This program is the logical next step in the story of Bray Wyatt. Much like some of the men previously mentioned in this piece, Wyatt has a huge score to settle with The Viper. Arguably Bray Wyatt’s biggest failure was losing the WWE Championship to Randy Orton at WrestleMania 33 a mere 48 days after capturing his first World Title.
The months-long feud between these two men did end on an upswing for Wyatt as he defeated Orton in the House of Horror’s match at Payback ’17, but he never fully got his revenge. Wyatt never received a rematch for his WWE Championship, as Orton subsequently dropped the Title to Jinder Mahal not long after his loss to Bray in House of Horrors. Now more than three years later, Wyatt finally has the opportunity he’s been waiting for – a chance to even the score.
If me waxing philosophically isn’t enough to get you on board, how about the meat and potatoes argument? Keeping one of your top stars away from the title scene during the prime of their career is a bad business decision. Bray Wyatt and Drew McIntyre are the top two babyfaces in the RAW men’s singles division, at least until Edge comes back. I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to see Orton and McIntyre fight other people.
I’ll gladly watch Bray Wyatt and Randy Orton battle it out for a few months over the WWE Championship once Survivor Series is over. WWE creative though needs to live up to its name if it’s going to successfully overcome the biggest issue when it comes to The Fiend.
WWE has to get creative when it comes to The Fiend’s matches
The argument I hear the most against putting Bray Wyatt in the Title picture, is he’s too strong. That’s true. The Fiend can withstand more punishment than any superstar in the history of WWE. This is a man who was thrown off a stage and electrocuted, and still defeated Seth Rollins for the Universal Championship.
Aside from the debacle at WWE Super Showdown where Goldberg defeated The Fiend with a few spears and a lackluster Jack Hammer, no one else has managed to keep the The Fiends shoulder’s pinned to the mat for three seconds. No one has even come close to making him submit. We’ve seen other versions of Bray Wyatt lose matches, but sooner or later, The Fiend is going to have to be defeated in a way that makes sense and that is true to the character.
With The Fiend being booked as the strongest character in the history of wrestling, WWE has truly painted themselves in the corner. However, it’s not nearly as an impossible escape as you might think. There are a myriad of match stipulations that would allow The Fiend to be beaten without eating a pin. A ladder match, a cage match, a casket match, a buried alive match, a first blood match, believe me, I can dig deep into my attitude era bag of stipulations. The easiest example would be what we saw at Payback with Roman Reigns winning a triple threat match by pinning Braun Strowman.
The more creative route is to pray on The Fiend’s vulnerabilities, by which I mean Alexa Bliss. This is the avenue I would expect Randy Orton to do down in order to defeat The Fiend. I don’t buy for one second that Orton isn’t afraid of Bray Wyatt’s alter ego, he showed as much on RAW. I do fully expect Orton though to face his fears and try to outfox The Fiend.
The one thing we know about Randy Orton is he’s not afraid to make things incredibly personal. He’s willing to go as far as necessary in order to defeat his opponent. What if Orton finds away to make The Fiend choose between what he loves the most, Alexa Bliss or his lost toy in the WWE Championship?
Bray Wyatt has proven over time that he’s an autophobic. He hates being alone. He wants to be loved, he wants to befriended. Why else do you think he replaced his lost Wyatt family members with puppets and spent all summer trying to bring Braun Strowman back home? Wyatt now has his first real friend in years, which could ultimately be his downfall.
There’s an amazing story here that could play out in front of eyes and frankly, I’m more excited to watch that play out than I am worried about whether The Fiend “needs” the Title or not.
Does Bray Wyatt need the WWE Championship? No, he doesn’t. He’s a very special attraction and booking him as Champion can prove to be challenging. That said, Bray Wyatt wants the WWE\Universal Championship, and that’s why he’s going to come for it when the time is right.
With Randy Orton as WWE Champion, the time is right for The Fiend to strike. Whether he’s successful or not doesn’t bother me as much, as long as it’s done the right way. So please WWE, I beg you, no repeats of Super Showdown.