Monday on Raw, Wade Barrett returned from obscurity in the most glorious way possible. Channeling his inner Michael Cole, Barrett stood behind a podium and agitated the live audience. WWE has booked its latest real-life troll, and the sky could be the limit for Bad News Barrett.
Despite his cheap-heat antics, Barrett didn't pander for any certain reaction. He simply stated an intentionally unpopular opinion before politely thanking his audience for their time.
The gimmick has plenty of legs and is perfectly suited for Barrett, who has quite possibly the most complete promo abilities on the WWE roster.
To call it cheap heat is misleading and undermining to its real power. Simple, caustic insults that incite big reactions are among the most potent arsenals any interviewer could have.
Wade Barrett's delivery, charisma and timing will be perfect for the barrage of trolling one-liners he'll have in store for live audiences.
Instead of being rushed back to the ring in a meaningless slew of midcard matches, Barrett is allowed to hone his heat in a gimmick that stands out from anything currently on television.
Who else gets their own podium and graphic stamped on screen once they've finished a one-minute monologue?
When the time finally comes for Barrett to resume wrestling, fans will have stronger motivations to root against him than the typical heel.
The more heat-baiting promos Barrett cuts ahead of his in-ring returns, the better. In addition to his verbal jabs, Barrett threw his hat into the future undisputed title picture Friday on SmackDown. Such big talk gives the heel plenty of room for comeuppance, which should always be the end game in booking a true villain.
Following his memorable debut and subsequent run as the leader of the Nexus, Barrett has had trouble sinking his teeth into a gimmick capable of propelling his once-promising singles career.
With the help of his latest repackaging, Barrett could finally be on his way.