WWE has to make some moves with The Bloodline angle before fans begin to lose interest.
All stories ebb and flow. Novels. Movies. Comic book arcs. Even the stories you share with friends, all have up and down points with varying levels of excitement. The same is true about professional wrestling, and The Bloodline angle is heading into another moment when fans are getting restless to see something drastic happen. After the end of the first “chapter” with Cody Rhodes, WWE has a test on its hands to prove the company can tell effective long-term stories.
On the May 12 edition of WWE SmackDown, it was announced that Roman Reigns and Solo Sikoa are set to take on Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens at Night of Champions on May 27. That announcement caused a lot of pause for a variety of reasons, including what this means for the next chapter of the angle. It’s clear that tensions are boiling between The Usos and Reigns/Sikoa, but when will the company pull the trigger? It seems like the height of the angle has passed.
When Rhodes fell to Roman at WrestleMania 39, many questioned how could this angle go on. What does this mean for Roman’s title run and who is the man to upset him? While fans debate if that man is Rhodes, Jey Uso, or someone else – it appears that WWE doesn’t have a clear idea of who is the one to get that big moment. These mid-steps, like this tag team title opportunity, appear to be nothing more than a stopgap as they continue to write the angle that should at least have an endpoint they are working toward.
Predictability in big angles works. The Elite versus the Blackpool Combat Club is the biggest angle going on in AEW right now, and fans have called every turn along the way. When Don Callis attacked Kenny Omega on AEW Dynamite, everyone saw that coming. At some point soon, “Hangman” Adam Page will make the run-in to save The Elite. Perhaps Konosuke Takeshita turns and joins the BCC? Regardless of what happens, each of these steps is easy to predict within AEW’s storytelling. That doesn’t make them any less impactful, and fans still pay money and watch in droves to witness their occurrence.
The Bloodline arc lacks predictability and that’s not for the best. These doldrums give fans the perception that there are matches and show that can be missed because much will not happen. And there have been many moments where nothing big has happened, especially with Roman’s abbreviated schedule. What should be “can’t miss” matches and segments are instead mostly skippable, and that’s a growing concern.
The Roman Reigns story arc has hit its dull moments in the past. WWE toyed with fans’ emotions a few months ago, and if this arc is going to deliver and build a huge star in the outcome, WWE must step on the gas sooner rather than later.