Rob Van Dam's return to World Wrestling Entertainment on the April 7 episode of Monday Night Raw was the beginning of his latest chapter with the company.
One of the most popular stars of the last 20 years, Van Dam remains perpetually over with the audience thanks to an unconventional set of moves and laid back demeanor. He does not yell, he does not scream and he gets his point across by proving his worth between the ropes.
At what point, though, does the shtick become played out? At what point do the fans become bored with the same old RVD?
With young stars such as The Shield, Paige, Rusev and Cesaro making major impact on WWE programming and Bray Wyatt being such a compelling character, Van Dam is faced with a situation in which he must adapt and evolve his character or risk becoming stale.
And staleness may have already set in.
He has relied heavily on his trademark offense, the same set of moves he has used since rising to prominence in 1997. He is the same exact character he was back then, as well, and is reaping the benefits of his past accomplishments when it comes to fan reaction.
For someone who was once considered a revolutionary Superstar, he has allowed himself to become just another face in the crowd.
A crowd that is rapidly passing him by.
There is still a lot of wrestling left in RVD. As stated above, he remains over with the audience and, despite relying on the same checklist of moves he has been using for the last 15 years or so, still works hard when the bell rings. He is badly in need of a character makeover or, at the very least, a little tweaking here and there to make him interesting again.
If that happens, Van Dam could prosper.
If not, one can only wonder how long he can remain relevant before fans get tired and move on to someone more interesting and innovative than the former WWE and ECW champion.