Cody Rhodes is glad that there are so many top babyfaces in WWE today.
Since the moment Rhodes returned to the company last year at WrestleMania 38, he has been cheered to the rafters by the WWE Universe. In recent months, he has been joined by a plethora of other good guys to get positive reactions from the audience, something that was more of a rarity a few years ago.
On a recent edition of Sam Roberts’ NotSam Wrestling podcast, Rhodes paid tribute to his fellow babyfaces, singling out World Heavyweight Champion Seth Rollins and the Undisputed WWE Tag Team Champions Sami Zayn & Kevin Owens.
“The babyface was an endangered species and now, just look at the landscape. There’s Seth Rollins, Sami Zayn, Kevin Owens, and there’s people popping up left and right in terms of — its not so endangered anymore.”
Rollins has had the fans behind him for months now, and his World Heavyweight Title win was the culmination of a road back to the top that took years.
Meanwhile, Zayn won fans over with his quest to join The Bloodline, then took them with him when he turned on Roman Reigns – who is arguably the top heel in the company – and reunited with Owens to try to take the Tribal Chief down.
Towards the end of his time in AEW, Rhodes was receiving more boos from fans than cheers, yet seemingly refused to turn heel, although he since admitted that he was a heel at that point in his career.
While still portraying a very similar character in WWE, Rhodes believes he is being almost universally cheered because fans know what they are seeing is “real.”
“The reason I think that the WWE audience took to it in a completely different way, as if they dismissed whatever was happening, and this was just my hope and belief I think it’s because they knew what you were seeing was real.
“There was always that grey matter and that suspension of disbelief, but I think they knew, ‘Oh, his return is more than just an individual returning.'”
Cody Rhodes fought WWE to keep key part of ‘The American Nightmare’
For Cody, a major part of bringing ‘The American Nightmare’ character to WWE was in the presentation, a key part of which was the theme music he had been using on the independent scene and in AEW, ‘Kingdom’ by Downstait.
During a recent interview, Rhodes said he was determined to keep the music, although he was worried there might be changes. While a different version of the theme was offered as an option, Rhodes turned it down, preferring to make sure everything was kept intact, in part to stop fans from getting “mad.”
H/T to Wrestling Inc. for the above transcription.