Over the past decade John Cena has been WWE’s main attraction, their star. Cena is the face of the world wide phenomenon known as the WWE and there’s no denying he will be the face of the company for the next few years. WWE has relied on him to be ‘the go to guy’ and he has delivered as supposedly, according to most fans, their biggest babyface. While many fans see Cena as their “hero” and “idol”, other IWC members known as “smarks” love to hate him. John Cena might be a polarizing figure but he is certainly not a babyface…he is a heel, in fact he is currently the biggest heel in the wrestling world.
Whether you love him or you hate him, at the end of the day the fans have strong feelings towards the face of WWE. If you’ve been to a live WWE event, you can hear the hostility in the air as soon as Cena’s music hits. Over the past decade John Cena has truly become the biggest heel in wrestling due to the fact he’s turned into everything the average WWE fan despises. The once freestyling rapping, badass has turned into a wrestling version of Tom Brady. Like Brady, Cena has money, fame, Nikki Bella, and a Hall of Fame Championship Resume. So what would make fans hate a guy that is one of the biggest Make-A-Wish and WWE stars of all-time while preaching “Hustle, Loyalty, and Respect?
Fans of WWE are tired of seeing John Cena portray the unbelievable role of the ultimate superhero. Adults are not very fond of superheroes. They are even less fond of corny-looking bright attire which is obviously used to please the kids. Cena doesn’t look like a tough guy’s wrestler even though he is built like a tank. He also rarely loses a big matchup without some kind of interference or unfair tactics being used by his opponent. Notably, Cena has only lost cleanly a few times in recent history, Losing WWE titles matches to Daniel Bryan at Summerslam 2013, to Brock Lesnar at Summerslam last year, and losing to The Rock at WrestleMania 28.
Another pet-peeve plenty of wrestling fans have against John Cena is how World Wrestling Entertainment only markets him. Sure WWE features other wrestlers as they film movies at WWE Studios, but never do we see the likes of Seth Rollins, Daniel Bryan, or Dolph Ziggler being featured on shows like “Saturday Night Live” or “The Tonight Show”. WWE has grown used to the idea of planting Cena’s face on every collector cup or magazine cover possible, many in the wrestling community believe Daniel Bryan could do a great job in the same spotlight Cena has been in over the past 12 years.
What makes Cena so hated even as a mid-carder now is that he’s still playing the same role he would play holding the WWE Championship. Plenty of fans feel John Cena only used the rapper gimmick to gain superstardom only to drop the act and show the entire world who he really is and what he’s truly about. If wrestling was about shaking hands and kissing babies, John Cena would be the greatest of all-time. Die-hard fans of wrestling love a character who isn’t afraid to have an edge, break the rules, and is constantly reinventing himself. The Undertaker is a great example of molding his character with the times.
Fans dislike John Cena because he is nothing like The Rock and Stone Cold. Adult WWE fans are very nostalgic about the Attitude Era, which spanned the late 90’s and early 2000’s. This was the time during which The Rock and Steve Austin became extremely popular, selling out arenas and garnering mainstream popularity. Professional wrestling was at it’s peak then, and the storylines were far edgier, more violent and a treat for adult fans. After Austin and Rock left, WWE transitioned into having John Cena as the top babyface, he is basically too repetitive and cartoonish for Attitude Era fans.
Many people compare John Cena to a modern day Hulk Hogan, even Hogan at one point recognize when he was becoming stale, stagnant, and corny, he made an heel turn and became greater than ever. His time is up, his time is not now, John Cena will always be stale, stagnant, and corny, and for that he will always be the greatest heel in the wrestling world.
So while hundreds of fans see Cena as their idol and the biggest babyface in the WWE, people have to realize that that Cena is in fact the biggest and greatest heel in wrestling. Cena will continue to be the biggest heel as long as WWE Creative continues to book him the way they do now. Cena is hands down the biggest heel in the WWE and from this angle there is no denying that.
This article was co-written by CamelClutchBlog’s Max Cruze and Sherron Watson who currently writes for PWInformant and WWERumblingRumor; you can follow him on Twitter @S_Watson1982 and @MaxCruzePW