Once again on WWE Monday Night Raw, the fans in attendance chanted "Albert" during Lord Tensai's match. For those who do not know, Lord Tensai was formerly known in the WWE as Albert/A-Train.
According to a recent Bleacher Report article by Justin Watry, "WWE had security take away any 'Albert' signs" at a recent RAW Supershow.
As if doing such a thing will get Lord Tensai in the fans' good graces.
If I were in charge over at WWE, I would handle Tensai's fan problems in a different way. Instead of confiscating "Albert" signs or muting "Albert" chants, I would let the fans keep their signs and let them chant all they want. Ultimately, I would embrace the signs and chants and use them to Tensai's advantage.
How can WWE use the "Albert" chants to Lord Tensai's advantage?
I would have Tensai confront the fans' signs and chants head-on. As Kane would eloquently say, Tensai should "embrace the hate." Tensai or his sidekick Sakamoto should tell the fans that Albert, the former self-deprecating "Hip-Hop Hippo," is dead and that he died in Japan—where Lord Tensai was born—like a Phoenix rising from the ashes.
To accompany Tensai's confrontation with the fans, I would air embarrassing clips of Albert on the Titantron right in the middle of Tensai's matches. Doing this should infuriate Tensai and cause him to inflict even more pain on his opponents. I would air the videos every week with the person responsible for airing the videos remaining anonymous and eventually vanishing.
I do not see any other solution for Tensai to win over the fans than to confront the fans and his past. WWE needs to sell the transformation which Albert underwent in Japan. Having Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler mention that Tensai is a former WWE star and that he dominated the competition in Japan is not enough. WWE needs to recognize Tensai's unsuccessful past before they can attempt to establish his dominant future.
WWE needs to point out Tensai's transformation from unsuccessful WWE wrestler to dominant force in Japan. Key phrase: "unsuccessful to dominant."
I've bought into Lord Tensai since his debut. This is because Tensai's back story reminds of Batman's back story in the film, Batman Begins. Before Batman was Batman, he was just Bruce Wayne. Similarly, before Tensai was Tensai, he was just Albert. Both Bruce Wayne and Albert needed to go to faraway lands to find themselves, and as a result, underwent transformations.
In a WWE.com article entitled, "Lord Tensai's Message Decoded," Japanese phrases which were seen in Tensai's pre-debut vignettes were translated.
Through no small effort, WWE.com has obtained the translation of the Japanese phrases that aired during the vignette, and the exact content of his message to the WWE Universe. The translations provide some clue into Tensai's mission, and what the WWE locker room can expect upon his arrival:
"It was said he would find himself in a faraway land."
"Lord Tensai will strike."
"Lord Tensai draws near."
"Lord Tensai approaches. Beware!"
It is unfortunate that the WWE has failed to sell Tensai's transformation (the first line of translation found above) to the fans. Until they do, Lord Tensai will continue to be bombarded with "Albert" chants from fans. Until Tensai confronts the chants and his past, he will not win over the fans—which is a shame.
Thanks for reading!