Chris Jericho: Better Heel or Funny Guy?

Nicholas DomingueContributor IMarch 25, 2009

LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 11:  Wrestler Chris Jericho arrives at the Celebrity Lock Room presents 'An All Star Night at the Mansion' at the Playboy Mansion on July 11, 2006 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Michael Buckner/Getty Images)

Chris Jericho is my all-time favorite wrestler, one that is fun to root for and has always been a pure entertainer. Not only is he a great wrestler, but Chris has also become an accomplished writer, singer of the heavy metal band Fozzy, and also has some acting roles to his credit.

Before his hiatus that eventually led to his return in November of 2007, Chris Jericho was the one wrestler who could always make people laugh. His character was such that you could never quite take him seriously if he seemed to get mad or visibly upset at something, because Chris would always turn it into a funny situation. His mic skills were always sharp and he could get the entire crowd in his corner. However, our current Chris Jericho is a vast departure from the funny Chris of the past.

The change in Chris started with his feud with Shawn Michaels. Shawn Michaels was one of Chris' main influences in wrestling, and their characters had a good bit in common. This wasn't his first feud with Shawn Michaels, but it was by far the most intense feud he had ever been a part of.

The shift started when Chris rammed Shawn's head through the JeriTron TV screen, and that in itself was a symbol of the upcoming change. The Highlight Reel had always been a comic show, filled with laughs and Jericho's distinct brand of humor, but when he smashed Shawn Michaels's head into the screen, it signaled the beginning of the end of the funny Chris Jericho.

In the weeks that followed, Chris Jericho's character changed to 100 percent heel. He rebuked the audiences he spoke in front of, saying they were not worthy to cheer for him, and that they had wronged him. His motto changed from "Save Us" to "Save Me."

Chris openly distanced himself from his prior comedic character and moved in a new direction. Now, in real life, I'm sure Chris is still the cool and funny guy he's always been, but his new me, I don't like his new character nearly as much as his old one.

It seems that Chris is headed down the Randy Orton path, and while he has found success in winning the World Heavyweight Title, it still would have been better if he had won it as the "Ayatollah of Rock N' Rolla" instead of being the new "Ayatollah" of the WWE.

I definitely don't mean to dis Chris, he is still my favorite wrestler and I will always root for him. It's just that, from what I've seen of his new character, it doesn't seem like the Chris Jericho that we know and love, the one who could make even the sternest of people crack a smile.

Every wrestler has a heel turn somewhere in their career, and being open-minded, I will say that Chris may be trying a new approach in his career as a more serious wrestler without the funny antics.  I respect him for trying a new avenue, but in all honesty, when I see Chris Jericho, one of the funniest guys out there will still come to mind.

Nick Domingue