Monday, May 11, 2015

Sasha Banks: An Appreciation

A legit BOSS indeed
Photo Credit:
Arguably, the best wrestler in WWE is not on the main roster, and is not the kind of wrestler who will be in the mix to headline WrestleMania, at least in the near future. Despite the lack of apparent opportunity outside of potentially headlining an episode of Monday Night RAW, she appears to have a drive and determination to be the quintessential pro wrestler, to be better than the men who have all the opportunities that she doesn't. She's easily the best female worker WWE has ever had, and her dedication to character is in a word pristine. Sasha Banks may be the perfect professional wrestler.

The secret truth is she wasn't too far off from the mark upon entering NXT. A lot of people like to hold her up as a paradigm of Sara Amato's rigorous and transformative training, and in a way, she did make strides upon entering the developmental system. However, to tout her along with wrestlers like Charlotte or Alexa Bliss is unfair to Banks. She was a standout in the New England indie scene before being signed. Of course, that scene hadn't had much of a light shone upon it until Beyond Wrestling really blew up in the last few years, but as Mercedes KV, she wasn't exactly turning in clunkers. In fact, Beyond booked her more than a few times, and she was part of a four-way match that was among the highlights of the company, pre-Fete Music.

Her ascendancy can be more tied to how much she's improved as a character since her debut on NXT television, but a lot of that has to do with her not having a character at first and then running with one when she was bestowed a new persona via the NXT Divas Mirror of DOOM. As soon as she was called "The Boss," she owned it immediately and wholly to the point where it was surprising that she hadn't spent years honing it. Then again, maybe she was honing it her whole life in preparation for her big shot.

But it's not just the big picture that she gets. The details are what separate the great wrestlers from the merely good ones. The picture above is only a tip of the iceberg of what Banks puts into her entire act, whether on camera or off. Having a stamp at the ready is something that a flamboyant "urban" wrestler with an inflated ego WOULD have, and it fits her like the long piece fits in a four-line Tetris.

In a perfect world, Banks and Becky Lynch would not only be wrestling for the Women's Championship at Takeover: Unstoppable on May 20, it would be the main event, and in a just world, it wouldn't not have been the first time she would have headlined a NXT Network special, especially not just out of necessity because everyone else seems to be injuring their shoulders. Banks isn't the first proof that women can do more than supplement men in a major, mainstream company, but she's perhaps the strongest example in at least 15 years, and perhaps the most well-rounded American piece of evidence to that case ever. She's not only The BOSS, but she's totally deserving of that title, but not as deserving of it as she's worthy of your undying adulation.

PS, please don't chant "Sasha's ratchet" at her. It's racist as shit. Try to find a different way to chant your in-character disapproval of her antics, thx.