Tuesday, August 11, 2015

The Cesaro Section

Cesaro has gotten himself over thanks in part to his fans
Photo Credit: WWE.com
WWE in the last few years has needed more than some nudging to get to pushing some guys that the crowds have clamored to see. It took arenas full of people chanting "YES! YES! YES!" for two years for the company to put Daniel Bryan in the main event, and even that needed a lot of luck to get going. For every Bryan, several other wrestlers with immense fan support don't get more time to be featured on shows, let alone the shine that Bryan got by being on the top of the card. If a wrestler is getting immense television time, it shouldn't matter whether he or she is on the card, but as noted before, WWE has a problem with giving its midcard any kind of time to grow and develop.

After last year's debacle of a botched push, Cesaro was left in that limbo between creative not knowing what to do with him and Vince McMahon allegedly not "getting" him. But he's always had support in the crowds. People have been bringing "Cesaro section" signs to shows for over a year, hoping to get some kind of grassroots movement going to get him more of a role on television. It looked like he was going to join Bryan in the upper echelon after WrestleMania, when he won the Andre the Giant Battle Royale with great fanfare and became a Paul Heyman guy. Of course, history bore that out in disappointing fashion.

But fans didn't give up support. Sure, he didn't remain Bryan levels of over even in his de-emphasis, but fans didn't stop cheering for him and reacting for him, whether or not he was given a place on the main shows. Of course, now he's in the best position he's been in since after Mania last year, in part because he was the squeakiest wheel when McMahon made the infamous "brass ring" comments during the live Steve Austin podcast in February. He's made the most of his opportunities to the point where he and Kevin Owens appear to be headed into a semi-important match at SummerSlam.

Even more pointed, the commentary acknowledged the Cesaro Section, which should be the biggest sign of approval, right? Except anytime WWE's narrative picks up on something organic, that thing gets rammed into the ground. Fandangoing, Suplex City, even the "YES!" chants have been ground down from their organic glory because Vince McMahon is more out of touch than the Republican Party. As good a sign as it is that WWE seems to be putting faith behind Cesaro, the worst thing in the world might be Michael Cole mentioning his Section and then WWE co-opting it in a crass manner.

But at least Cesaro is getting his shine. I'm not sure how long this run is going to last, but he's showing how much an outstanding performer he can be on the highest level. In part, his fans get a bit of that credit for doggedly keeping him in the spotlight. That can't be discounted. WWE seems to be getting the value of its fans' input, which is essential for the survival of any company. OF course, WWE shouldn't do exactly what the fans want, but listening to them is an essential tool.