Paul Heyman: WrestleMania 31's unlikely saviour?
All true great artists have an intrinsic appeal about themselves. The way they go about their business isn’t just intriguing, but reminds you about your own mortality, and how you can never achieve true perfection that they seem to pull off effortlessly.
Watching Mozart or Beethoven on a piano or watching Muhammad Ali in a boxing ring doesn’t only bring you to the harsh reality of their true greatness, but also brings about the realization of the honor and privilege of watching them as a contemporary. There is no better feeling than to watch history being written right in front of your eyes.
In professional wrestling today, working the microphone isn’t given a lot of importance. There are a few exceptions, but the fact that real story is told inside the ring can sometimes compensate for the lack of promo skills.
But the fact that promos are an integral part of the business has necessitated the involvement of managers; in the past, if a performer was “too green” on the microphone, he was given a manager.
One such superstar is the current WWE World Heavyweight champion, Brock Lesnar, and the fans couldn’t be happier about it as his manager happens to be one of the greatest mic – workers in the history of professional wrestling, along with being one of the greatest managers of all time.
I’ve written numerous times about how Paul Heyman can convince a person to jump off a building, while making him believe that is actually a good thing. Heyman’s verbal prowess is second to none, and like always, Heyman now has the responsibility to save the main event of WrestleMania 31.
With Lesnar working very few dates and Roman Reigns not exactly being stellar on the microphone, the onus was always upon Heyman to deliver the goods, and he certainly didn’t disappoint his fans.
The formula behind Heyman’s success
Every superstar is given detailed notes about what to say during their promos, and that usually results in a dull, inorganic promo that doesn’t quite capture the imagination of the fans.
Unlike the other superstars, Heyman’s philosophy is simple – react according to the response he gets from the fans. Heyman’s experience in the business has taught him all the tricks of the trade, and no matter what the situation is, Heyman reacts accordingly, and doesn’t go over the same topic twice.
Heyman’s verbiage and his prowess with the microphone had always rendered the audience speechless, and his promo earlier this week on RAW is a fine example of how the maestro is always in control, and like a great conductor, has his audience in the palm of his hand, making them sing to his tune and not the other way around.
His brilliance in dissolving reality in kayfabe
One of the things that differentiates Paul from his peers lies in his ability to include the real world scenario in his otherwise kayfabe promos. Heyman not only acknowledges the rumor mill, but also intricately dissolves it in the world of kayfabe, coming up with promos that not only caters to the casual fans but also to the hardcore wrestling fans, who keep a tab on what is happening behind the scenes.
Heyman isn’t afraid to push the envelope, and has time and again proved that professional wrestling isn’t only about telling a story inside the ring, but also necessitates a good storyteller over the microphone. Heyman has the uncanny ability to detail things in a manner which even the most casual fan can comprehend, and the professor has always made sure that the point of the promo gets through to the fans.
Keeping it simple
One of the easiest yet uncommon things is to keep things simple. Heyman’s greatest asset is his ability to keep his promos simple yet effective. He doesn’t have to come up with catchy euphemisms or catchphrases, or even a poetic verse to entertain the fans and hold their interest.
Heyman, unlike most of the superstars understands the nuances of the business, and hence understands the fact that in order to show Roman Reigns as a worthy adversary to Lesnar, he should be built properly, not just with his actions in the ring, but also on the microphone.
So how can Heyman save the main event at WrestleMania 31? He perhaps already has; with Heyman emphasizing on how not even Daniel Bryan can pose a threat to Lesnar puts Roman Reigns over as the one person who has a shot at beating Lesnar for the WWE World Heavyweight championship.
Just like the build up to Muhammad Ali – Joe Frazier, you need to invest in both the superstars as a fan to make the main event a success, and that is exactly what Paul Heyman has done effectively, and the fact that the fans chanted “Heyman” during his promo proves that Heyman is indeed the greatest talker in WWE today.