Missing from the flagship show were Miz's signature trunks and kick pads. Instead, the former WWE champion opted to don a bold white suit with black trim while hosting his Piper-esque Miz TV show.
In fact, all Miz has done for the past month is host. Once a WrestleMania headliner, the Miz has not wrestled a match on Raw or SmackDown since scoring a November 19 victory over David Otunga.
Miz fans should be a confused bunch when it comes to his recent booking. On one hand, Miz has been infused into major storylines. On the other, his ever-so-pertinent wrestling stock seems to have bottomed out.
The Miz interviewed John Cena and AJ Lee about their once-hot romance on the November 23 edition of SmackDown. During this segment, Miz asked Cena the tough, hard-hitting questions, like "Are [you and AJ] in looooove?"
This unique segment closed the December 3 episode of Raw, although Miz—who has recently turned babyface—was booked to take a beating from the champion to build heat.
Miz continues to appear in 2006 form, serving as more of a host than a wrestler. It was during 2006 where his gig as the host of SmackDown was a backhanded way of WWE admitting they did not know what to do with him, yet rewarded him with TV time for trying.
Prior to his debut in 2006, Miz had trained intensely to be a wrestler since 2003. The hungry former reality star cut his teeth in Ultimate Pro Wrestling.
He would go on to earn a contract with the WWE in 2004 after impressing during WWE's Tough Enough series. From there, Miz would spend time in WWE developmental territories Deep South Wrestling and Ohio Valley Wrestling.
As Miz has tirelessly admitted, it was his reputation as a reality star that caused him to work twice as hard to be accepted as a legitimate wrestler. While his slow path started as a non-wrestling host, he would eventually evolve into a bona fide star in the WWE.
Seeing Miz appear in a suit and tie, armed with only a microphone over the past month is quite curious. It wouldn't be inaccurate to say he has regressed. By the same token, Miz has mainly been involved in high-caliber storylines as of late.
It was Friday on SmackDown, the go-home TV show before TLC, where Miz conducted one final interview with Daniel Bryan and Kane. Bryan and Kane along with Ryback are set to compete in the TLC main event against The Shield. WWE champion CM Punk required knee surgery and will be unable to defend his title against Ryback as was originally planned.
Perhaps the WWE has bigger plans for the Miz, and would like to keep him in the spotlight before he takes off again. Maybe the company has accepted the former main-eventer as a failed project who really was meant to be a host.
Only time will tell. For now, Miz's wrestling career remains just a few steps above WWE purgatory.