Brodus Clay returned to the WWE a couple of weeks ago under a new gimmick as “The Funkasaurus,” but that almost never happened.
You may or may not know this, but the career paths of Mark Henry and Brodus Clay have had some interesting twists and turns that will link these two men with each other forever.
Clay is only the “Funkasaurus” because the creative team reportedly stole his gimmick idea and gave it to Mark Henry.
An interesting story regarding Brodus Clay is that when he finished shooting a movie for WWE Studios earlier this year and asked what WWE creative had planned for him, officials said they had no idea and suggested he come up with an idea for himself. Brodus came up with the idea of being a monster heel that doesn’t sell for the babyfaces, then beats them up and inducts them into his personal “House of Pain”, similar to World Heavyweight Champion Mark Henry. Brodus reportedly was told that it was a great idea.
I can’t even describe how livid I would be if I was Clay. I mean, just imagine what was going through his head at the time.
Clay comes up with a great gimmick, but the creative team takes that gimmick and gives it to someone else. He then has to sit back and watch while Henry uses his gimmick to get the biggest push of his career and become world heavyweight champion. Meanwhile, Clay gets held off TV for months while all of this is going on.
That absolutely sucks.
It is equivalent to inventing some great new product, having someone else take credit for it and then watching that person make millions of dollars from it. Just awful.
I guess we will never really know how well Clay would have performed under his “Hall of Pain” gimmick or whether he would have got the push that Henry got. However, no matter what, it still has to eat Clay up inside.
In many ways, the fact that Henry was given Clay’s gimmick could have screwed up Clay’s career for good. It resulted in him being kept off TV and potentially could have ended his career as a WWE star.
Luckily for Clay, that hasn’t happened, and he will likely get past this and move forward with the rest of his career.
Sure, his path to stardom probably would have been easier had he been allowed to use the “Hall of Pain” gimmick and the monster push that came along with it. However, we can’t just completely dismiss his new gimmick as “The Funkasaurus.”
While I will admit that it doesn’t exactly scream of being a main event-caliber gimmick, the bottom line is that Clay is making it work and is already getting over in a pretty big way. The fans are reacting to Clay because, instead of being just another typical big man, he has become a fresh and unique character that is wildly entertaining.
Though Clay is certainly a blend of past gimmicks (like Flash Funk and Rikishi), there is no character like him in today’s WWE and there hasn’t been for a while. Therefore, Clay is actually being given a huge opportunity to see where this “Funkasaurus” gimmick can take him.
Initially, I thought that Clay was screwed when Henry took his gimmick. However, that all changed last Monday thanks to the aforementioned “Funkasaurus” gimmick.
Clay patiently waited until he was called upon to return to the main roster, and as a result, he at least has a chance to completely recover from what was a very unfortunate situation.
He’s got a gimmick that’s getting over, he’s incredibly hilarious and he has the in-ring talent and charisma to become a staple in the WWE for the remainder of his professional wrestling career.
Many of us are assuming that Clay is already screwed because the “Funkasaurus” gimmick can’t “take him to the main event.” However, I think we’re overlooking the fact that he can still be successful without becoming a future main eventer or World champion.
Would you call Santino Marella a failure? No.
He may not be a success like John Cena, but he’s a different form of success that the WWE needs just as much it needs guys like Cena. He’s a comedic figure that people will pay to see, just like Clay appears to be becoming.
Plus, we’re overlooking one major detail that could make us all forget about the fact that Clay had his gimmick stolen.
That is, a potential heel turn or gimmick change down the road.
Clay doesn’t have to use this “Funkasaurus” gimmick or remain a baby face for the rest of his career. What's more, the fact that he’s using it now may lead to a fantastic heel turn and subsequent main event run down the road.
You just never really know what’s going to happen when it comes to the WWE, so let’s not count Clay out before his WWE career really even gets started.