WWE | Pro Wrestling

Kharma Sidelined Through Rest of 2011

Kharma is out for nine monthsIt only took six months for WWE to hire Kharma (Kia Stevens), give her a month’s worth of teaser promos, interfere in a few matches, and never wrestle a single match before news broke that she would miss the rest of the year due to health reasons. I don’t want to call it Dustin Runnels’ short lived gig in WCW as Seven, but the Kharma invasion of the WWE Divas will go down as a squalid waste of potential.

PWInsider.com and others are reporting that Kharma is pregnant, which is the cause of the absence and the painful blow off segment on Raw last Monday. In a 4-on-4 Divas match that lasted about five seconds, Kharma’s music hit, but instead of dropping Divas she knelt in the ring and began to cry. The cherry on top of Triple H‘s continued misuse of talent was that when Raw came back from commercial, Kharma was still in the ring, teary eyed and not doing anything, followed by another commercial break ten seconds later.

The reason I’m so bummed out about this news was because Kharma’s presence was instantly bringing new life to a Divas division that was barely clinging to life. With the tag team division stuck somewhere between ‘in the toilet’ and ‘nonexistent’, I found it paramount that the Divas bring a little more to the table than The Bellas doing Twin Magic every other match. Michelle McCool, while a tangible loss, wasn’t going to affect ratings all that much; Kharma, on the other hand, was creating buzz and breathing depth and variety into a stale program.

Unfortunately, Kharma’s writing can only be described as having potential, because for the most part the story was marred by predictable appearances and lack of any character growth. The timing was also terrible. Kharma was finally revealing, piece by piece, some sort of angle with Kelly Kelly, who I was certain would take the Divas belt from Brie Bella at Over The Limit 2011. Now with no one to bounce off of Kelly Kelly, Brie Bella and her sister have to aimlessly wade through matches with no pretense, until the belt switches hands in a couple of weeks to Alicia Fox or insert skinny Diva here.

If there is a silver lining to WWE losing arguably their biggest female attraction is that maybe now the company can see that the format of the Divas division, along with the programming, has to be changed. With anywhere from 10 to 12 active Divas at one time, why are they still branded to Raw or Smackdown? At this point, all of the cards beside the two major titles are so small that each current champion should be co-branded. Hey, Vince and Co. obviously believe in their champions-have them all work both shows while King Cena and Lord Orton hold down their respective brands.

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As was mentioned earlier, part of the problem with showcasing Kharma came from the production truck. I believe for four straight invasions, we would get a recap of the destruction Kharma caused last week, a brief one to two minute Divas match, followed Kharma and her shoulder pads wrecking everything. While fun a couple of times, I began to predict within seconds when that laugh would queue and stalking of prey would commence.

So where does this leave Stevens’ future with the company? If I’m Vince, I respectfully let her contract expire and wish her luck in her future endeavors. I’m not going to attempt to say this was a wrong decision on Stevens’ part, but the timing of the pregnancy is a lose-lose for both parties. I have more than enough respect for her to walk away from her most lucrative job to date, amidst a giant push, but even if WWE does renew her contract, how will she be able to juggle a newborn at home and expect to be on a tireless WWE road schedule?

This may be the last we see of Kharma in action in the WWE, which is a real shame. Everyone loves a monster story, especially ones with little to no explained motive. Put her up against an established giant like Beth Phoenix or the underdog, diminutive Kelly Kelly and you have me daydreaming about those first few months Kane hit the scene, hell bent on killing his brother.

Regardless of what the future may hold, I wish Stevens and her family best of luck through these next several months. In the meantime, have fun trying to understand the vast, psychological differences and demeanors between girls like Melina and Rosa Mendes.

Joe Leininger lives in Gainesville, FL and writes for The Playing Field and Destigeddon.

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Eric G.

Eric is the owner and editor-in-chief of the Camel Clutch Blog. Eric has worked in the pro wrestling industry since 1995 as a ring announcer in ECW and a commentator/host on television, PPV, and home video. Eric also hosted Pro Wrestling Radio on terrestrial radio from 1998-2009. Check out some of Eric's work on his IMDB bio and Wikipedia. Eric has an MBA from Temple University's Fox School of Business.

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