I’m trying to find a place to start with this and it’s just not happening. So forgive me for being a little disjointed in starting here. I have my favorite promos. Anything that comes out of Mick Foley’s or Ric Flair’s mouth. I remember Al Snow cutting a promo in the ECW days before a big match that was so quiet and to the point and great. There was Roddy Piper at Halloween Havoc in 1996. And of course there was CM Punk’s “The Promo” where I couldn’t sleep that night because I couldn’t decide if it was a work or not. Guys could make you hate them with a short 5-minute promo like Owen Hart, Jerry Lawler or Bubba Ray Dudley. Or the guys who could have you eating out of their hand like Jake “The Snake”, The Rock or Dusty Rhodes.
This week, a great promo joined the ranks of the best ever. Eddie Kingston cut a promo that is probably the best of the year. And that’s on a year where you had CM Punk’s “The Promo,” CM Punk honoring Gregory Iron at AAW and HHH-Taker stare-down when both made their returns at the same time building up Wrestlemania. (I wrote a Facebook status after that where I said “Cut the promo. And if necessary, use words.”)
After Punk’s “The Promo,” a lot of the Internet Wrestling Community (IWC) used the phrase “talking people into the building. ” This Eddie Kingston promo does exactly that. Around Money in the Bank, there were so many great promos on Raw, not just from Punk. John Cena also cut some good promos during that time. He didn’t sound like the 10-year-old trying to get the other 10-year-olds on his side at the playground. He sounded legitimate and that he believed what he was saying. But some nights he just sounds like he’s reciting lines.
When I hear that Eddie Kingston promo, I hear something I don’t hear very often on WWE television… passion. And I’m not saying that John Cena doesn’t have any passion. I see that passion when he walks out to the ring every time. But I just don’t hear his passion through his promos. You can only believe somebody’s else’s thoughts so much. Even the great actors-Kevin Spacey, Robert DeNiro, Meryl Streep, Susan Sarandon-you can tell when they are playing a role and when they are not in character. The problem is that too many times, John Cena sounds like the guy you see on The Marine and not the athlete you go for on your local sports team, which is who he should be.
What I would love is for WWE to bring back the passion. Stop scripting stuff for the boys to say. I’m ok with rehearsing, but let them say what they want. After you watch this Eddie Kingston promo, you can’t live without seeing High Noon. When was the last time we wanted to see a WWE pay-per-view that much?