WWE: Is Michael Cole an Amazing Heel or Simply Annoying?
There is an extremely fine line for wrestling heels in regards to being effective and annoying. Some will correctly argue that even if you are annoying, you are doing your job as a heel. You are being loathed.
And yet, I cannot help but think that wrestling fans must surely have a limit in terms of what they are willing to accept from a heel. There must be a line in which we mark as being effective heel behaviour and something that is just poorly devised.
The curious case of Michael Cole is one that divides many.
His behaviour at last week's Raw aside, Michael Cole always had a tough job to do, following the legend that is Jim "JR" Ross. When you have had perfect pitch and tone for so long, not just anyone will do.
And so in order to remain different and meaningful, Cole needed something new. It began with his strange opposition to Bret Hart wrestling.
Many will agree that Hart should not have wrestled last year owing to his health but his appearances were much more than simple matches, it was finally obliterating the memory of Montreal.
Cole's character was unable to see this, and so his heeldom began.
And yet unlike other commentating heels, like Jerry Lawler, Bobby Heenan and even Jim Ross, Michael Cole seemingly annoys far more than he entertains.
Is Michael Cole and effective Heel?
As the three aforementioned examples indicate, there can still be wit in being heel, clever and funny remarks to be made in putting down the faces.
Jerry Lawler-isms are legendary: "The only exercise he gets is running his mouth and jumping to conclusions." Priceless.
However Michael Cole and other commentators today overact. They over-pronounce, they rely too much on prompts and the whole commentator process sounds forced and sanitised. Contrast this to JR's calling of WrestleMania XXV, and the difference is hugely noticeable.
Therefore for Cole, as a heel, it comes across as being too much. His treatment of the Divas this past week has justifiably been condemned, but his overacting regarding the Miz, Daniel Bryan and JR is just poor television.
Maybe it's because we have grown cynical of what we watch, but wrestling has ventured too far back into the cartoon world of the mid-1990s with the likes of Hornswoggle and Khali.
Where is the authenticity of wrestling? Where are the respected heels of yesteryear?
Michael Cole is a heel, arguably one of the biggest heels at the moment, but is that because he does his job or because he's simply annoying?
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