Big E. Langston's mostly unrevealed engaging personality and an imbalance in the WWE hero-to-villain ratio makes his babyface turn imminent.
Langston is currently the third wheel to AJ Lee and Dolph Ziggler's lovefest. He's the menacing enforcer who will in all likelihood eventually seek more individual glory. Fans have seen this story play out before. Diesel left Shawn Michaels' side; Alex Riley split with The Miz.
Langston looks to be next. WWE is already hinting at a turn, slipping in signs of dissension among his group.
On Monday's WWE Raw, Langston battled Alberto Del Rio. During the match, AJ hopped onto the apron and untied one of the turnbuckle covers. Moments later, it was that exposed turnbuckle that caused Langston to lose.
Del Rio threw him into it, and a dazed Langston fell victim to a roll-up and a three-count. Langston stormed away in frustration, which angered the unstable Diva.
This is a fracture in what should eventually be a shattered allegiance.
Langston's eventual departure from Ziggler and AJ doesn’t need to be milked over a long period of time. WWE has already begun to tell its story of upheaval, and while this mutiny shouldn't happen overnight, it doesn't need to be stretched out past SummerSlam.
The company's need for more strong faces and Langston's oddball charm make his turn inevitable, one that fans should expect to happen over the next few weeks.
Too Goofy for Darkness
Fans who follow Langston on Twitter or watched his work in NXT already know just how endearing and nerdy he can be. The best WWE personas are often the ones that are exaggerations of the wrestler's real personality.
Steve Austin was much more like his defiant redneck persona than the role he played as a Hollywood Blond. Langston may look like a human battering ram, but his personality is best suited for some combination of lightheartedness and aggression.
Take a look at his Twitter timeline, and you'll see an array of weirdness and off-kilter humor. Someone capable of a tweet this fun and dorky is probably better off not being a heel.
An official asked me for my ID, employer, height, weight, then fingerprinted me. Jail? Nope. GameStop trade-in? Somehow, yes.— Big E Langston (@BigELangston) April 14, 2013
Switching sides gives Langston many more opportunities to show off this side of himself.
As a heel, he's been only allowed to show intensity. Playing a face allows him to pull out his full arsenal, mixing rage with his eccentric charisma.
For many stars, a turn is just a way to stave off monotony, but for Langston it may be the key to accessing his true potential.
Seeing how likable Langston is in this video of him receiving a customized My Little Pony is evidence that he needs to be a good guy sooner than later.
The powerhouse has done well in his role as a scowling brute, but letting him be more like his true self gives fans a unique character and gives WWE creative another face to plug in against a growing number of heels.
A Heroic Imbalance
The World Heavyweight Championship is held by a heel. WWE's villains also own the United States, intercontinental and tag titles. The current landscape is dominated by the dark side.
The Shield has been an unstoppable force. Ryback is making a major impact. With CM Punk returning soon, Curtis Axel's recent re-debut and the impending arrival of Bray Wyatt and his family of backwoods barbarians, WWE is going to need to build up stars to oppose all this villainy.
Langston can't shift the balance of power on his own, but his turn would offer WWE more choices when deciding who should tackle all of those bad guys.
This imbalance may have WWE hurry his transition as well.
Dean Ambrose needs challengers for his U.S. title. Axel needs a rival to battle on his attempted journey to greatness. Wyatt needs a heroic foe to conquer.
Though he can't fill all of those roles, he would certainly thrive in any of them.
In the constantly shifting puzzle that is WWE booking, the company needs a powerful force to add to the face side. The sooner Langston breaks away from Ziggler and becomes that force, the better.