Cody Rhodes stole the show during the world title Money in the Bank ladder match. The son of Hall of Famer Dusty Rhodes managed to outlast his six opponents until Damien Sandow shoved Rhodes off a ladder to grab the briefcase. That feat ended Team Rhodes Scholars and started the face turn of Cody Rhodes.
The fans in Philadelphia bought it. They made Rhodes a face by appreciating his hard work and the punishment he took. Among the moves Rhodes performed was a fisherman’s buster on Antonio Cesaro on the ladder. He also dropkicked Jack Swagger while Cesaro stood on Swagger’s shoulders.
Rhodes won over the Philadelphia crowd, and his momentum continued in Brooklyn. He jumped Sandow after Sandow’s loss to Christian and again won over the fans.
The face turn is complete for Cody Rhodes. And according to F4WOnline.com (via Nick Paglino of Wrestlezone), the two men could vie for the briefcase at SummerSlam.
However, one must wonder if Rhodes can sustain this face turn. Just because the crowd is behind him doesn’t mean it’ll work in the long run. But if anyone can succeed as a face, it’s Cody Rhodes. Let’s break down the pros and cons of Rhodes’ face turn.
Cody Rhodes already had the qualities of a babyface. We just didn’t realize it. He always smiled at the camera, even when he was a heel. That was his gimmick—the “Dashing” Cody Rhodes.
Rhodes also has a following thanks to his legacy. The WWE Universe respects the legacy of past icons, including Cody’s father, Dusty Rhodes. The crowd also pops every time a confrontation happens between Rhodes and his brother, Goldust. The WWE Universe roared for each of their confrontations at the 2009 and 2013 Royal Rumbles.
Rhodes can also put on good matches. He hasn’t been tested as much, but he has risen to the occasion against better opponents, such as Daniel Bryan, Big Show and Booker T. He even defeated Rey Mysterio at WrestleMania 27.
He can also get the crowd behind him, as is evident from his performance in the two-day span of July 14 and 15. He should have no problem getting the fans’ support, especially against a heel like Damien Sandow.
Rhodes could run into major problems as a face. For starters, there’s the Marty Jannetty factor. The Rockers consisted of Jannetty and Shawn Michaels. Michaels went on to become successful, while Jannetty did not. Rhodes could be the Jannetty of Team Rhodes Scholars to Sandow’s Michaels.
This also could lead to Rhodes being stuck in the midcard division again. The division is in shambles, with no clear direction. Rhodes could get lost in the shuffle of names, with no momentum or relevancy this time.
Rhodes' legacy could also work against him. The Rhodes name is tough to live up to—just ask his brother. Goldust was a great performer, but he couldn’t reach past that midcard status. Who's to say Rhodes won’t suffer the same fate?
Despite these pros and cons, Cody Rhodes is in the driver’s seat. Only he can make his face turn successful. Will he pass or fail as a face? Only time will tell.