When CM Punk’s microphone turned off last summer, even the “smart Internet fans” scratched their heads not knowing if this was a scripted “shoot interview” or if the straight-edge superstar was actually voicing his opinion. Now, on the yearly road to WrestleMania, the line between reality and scripted television will be blurred as CM Punk is colliding into Chris Jericho.
Punk has been doing this for months. It appears obvious that he has been improvising his interviews and promos, often leaving his opponents baffled and without any comeback. While standing opposed to Kevin Nash, Punk’s witty banter kept the WWE Universe laughing and slapping their knee while Nash continued to remind fans why he should be retired.
Although his mic skills (or “pipebomb skills” as he’d probably call it) have been remarkable, Punk’s in-ring ability also seem to have reached a new level. No matter the fanbase, anyone who saw Punk defeat John Cena at last year’s Money in the Bank show were amazed to see an entertaining match. Not amazed that Punk had a great match, but that he could do so with the predictable Cena.
Although this isn’t the first time Punk has hoisted up the WWE title, it is the first time he has this much support from the WWE Universe. Any and every time “Cult of Personality” blares through the P.A. system, fans of all ages and genders raise to their feet to show Punk their appreciation.
The amazing part is that we’ve read this book before. It was a great read and we read the second installment just a few years back. This was the Book of Jericho.
Since the day Chris Jericho interrupted The Rock in front of a jam-packed Chicago crowd (ironically Punk’s hometown) Jericho has kept fans entertained with the microphone. Whether he was stringing together insults towards Stephanie McMahon or speaking with a monotone voice while wearing a suit, Y2J fans have always respected him to some degree.
He also has been tremendous in the ring regardless if that venue was an ECW, WCW, or WWE ring (although he admits his early WWE ring work wasn’t good). An epic match between him and Shawn Michaels stole the show at WrestleMania XIX and he also carried a match at WrestleMania XXV against Jimmy Snuka, Ricky Steamboat, and Roddy Piper (the three had an average age of 61).
In an attempt to not be a prisoner of the moment, I’ll try not to consider this to be the best feud of all time before it even finishes. But while looking at this recipe, there’s no reason for me to think that this can potentially be the most memorable feud in recent history. Never have we had two men with the ability to tear down the house both on the mic and in the ring collide on the biggest stage of them all.
The Rock and Steve Austin were never great in the ring like these two, Hulk Hogan’s same five repetitive moves could never get me out of my seat and Triple H and Randy Orton were never able to work well in the ring together.
The only other combination that comes close is when Shawn Michaels defeated Bret Hart at WrestleMania XII. I admit that’s a tough one to overcome.
When the time comes and the two hold their respective “pipebombs” and stand across the ring from each other, fans will wonder how much is scripted and how much is real. The second Punk placed “Best in the world” across the back of his shirt, Jericho fans took notice. Y2J, in his monotone voice would remind fans that he is “the best in the world” in what he does before Punk ever spoke the words. Y2J reminded fans on twitter that Punk was ripping him off.
“Everyone is so excited that @CMPunk mentioned me on Raw. Newsflash…I don’t give a s**t. Mind ur own business and stop rippin me off Punk.”
These are the type of feuds that fans love to watch, especially the older ones. Feuds where you don’t know what will happen next, who will win, or what will be said. You just know that something great is expected since both men have such talent.
With Punk and Jericho’s popularity being so high, their promos being entertaining, and what may be real animosity in the air, the next two months of watching these two may be the feud we remember for as long as we’re wrestling fans.