Christian’s World Title reign lasted five days in canon, three days in real life, and nowhere near long enough for any fan’s satisfaction.
All week I’ve read opinion pieces on the story, and just about everyone agrees on these three items:
- Nobody expected Christian’s reign to last very long,
- The match with Orton was very good,
- The title change does not appear to be a part of any story, though we all may be wrong about this come next week.
I’m a quality man. I don’t need to see hours and hours of wrestling in a week. I like to see the good stuff. And the Orton VS Christian match was very good. It came out of nowhere, of course, and made no sense in the lexicon of WWE (a face challenging and then beating another face? What?), but it made loads of sense in the lexicon of WWE politics (Orton is a better “draw” than Christian,
and they still generally put titles on their stars). But, given the circumstance, I’d like to point out that Christian may be the only guy on the WWE roster that’s had 100% quality matches as a world champion. It’s a salty compliment, but it’s true.
I’ve never been one to place too much emphasis on titles, instead preferring quality stories with or without trophies. But this wasn’t a good story, either, and I believe it is this reason that most wrestling fans are upset. Of course, we wanted Christian to be World Champion for a little longer, but we’re seethed that he was dumped so quickly, that he was never given a chance to perform in that position. I’m speaking for many people when I say that Christian is one of the best performers this art form has. That he’s always been kept in the middle of the pack is a disservice to his craft. WWE’s photography work catches Christian (almost all my favourite photos from their crew involve him in some way) in pain, weak, struggling, fighting. Rarely winning. Always trying to claw forward.
WWE has certainly cut short championships for political and timely reasons. But there was something about how long they held on Christian at the end of the match, how the camera stuck around to watch the look on his face. How he got up slowly, not because he was in pain, but because he was emptier. It was painful to watch because I back the guy, but mostly because he captured the feeling of an unfair, human loss, and we all felt it.
That they showcased this is proof that WWE sees this in Christian, too. It is perhaps his forte as a performer to embody the painstaken and beleagured—in that sense, all professional wrestlers are given this task, but few strike the perfect balance. And WWE is very guilty of typecasting a man to death. With the case of Christian, because he is so good at losing, it’s unfortunate that we may never see him really win.