WWE is PG. It’s no big secret of course; it’s a fact that has been crammed down our throats for quite some time now. And while there is a plethora of old school WWE fans out there that desperately want to see the company return to some semblance of the Attitude Era, we all know that’s likely not going to happen anytime soon.
Before we get into why it‘s a real shame, let me clarify; I am not suggesting that Foley come back to wrestle in WWE. I have never been one of those guys that pine away for the days of yesteryear, when men were juvenile delinquents and women were half-naked.
And don’t blow a gasket, I understand that WWE was working hard to beat back WCW during that time so it was pulling out all the stops. I get it, so relax.
But the fact is that I have never really been one that believed a guy should come back for one more run just because the fans want him to. Most of the veterans that leave left for a reason; whether is it was age, family, or physical wear and tear, the truth is that a guy knows when it’s time.
And if he doesn’t, then everyone else knows it.
Don’t get me wrong, the fact is that I have mad respect for anyone that gets into the ring. Taking a bump hurts; taking 1000 bumps over the course of a month takes a physical toll that likely no one even realizes. A pro wrestler pays his dues, has his career and then when the time comes, he walks away.
That right is earned; through blood, sweat and paying the price.
And if anyone has earned the right to a normal life, it’s Mick Foley. For anyone out there that never considered Mick to be a professional wrestler, the fact is that you can call him whatever you want. But one thing you cannot call him is heartless.
Foley had more heart and more love for the business in one bandaged finger than most of the guys in the ring have right now. He gave more to the fans through one incredible promo and one gut wrenching match than any of us really deserved.
Mick felt and believed everything on such a cerebral level and he made everyone watching feel it too. He was definitely one of a kind.
It’s no wonder why even to this day, fans are still comparing Superstars to Foley. The main example that comes to mind is of course Bray Wyatt, who could read the phone book and make it more compelling than anything that’s ever come out of TNA.
Stop whining, it’s true.
But as good as Bray is and as much as he definitely seems to be the second coming of Mick Foley, the truth is that he should be judged based upon his own merit. It’s hard enough getting it done on your own; forget about adding the pressure of being compared to a Hall of Famer.
Bray should just be the best Bray he can be. And last time I checked, he’s crazy good at it.
So no, Mick doesn’t need to come back and work one more match in WWE. He’s likely pretty happy where he is and that should be enough for fans. But what I miss and what I really want is that attitude on my TV once again.
Mick was just fun. It didn’t matter if he was Dude Love, Mankind or Cactus Jack, when Foley came through the curtain; fans were in for a show. He could have showed up in a chicken suit and fans would have left feeling like they got their money’s worth.
Foley was that entertaining. He took the simple notion of split personalities and he made it the most captivating idea that fans had seen at that time. Despite the fact that we all knew better, there was just something about how Mick did it that convinced us that maybe, just maybe, he really was emotionally cracked.
The fact that he went out and did that to his body every night only added more dimension to his characters.
I miss that. I miss the idea that a guy with that much heart that doesn’t look like a star can become one in the biggest pro wrestling company on the planet. I miss the idea that a guy that was told he couldn’t do it, found a way to prove his critics wrong.
I see all of you Daniel Bryan fans raising your hands. Yes, I agree, now put your hands down.
Here, how’s this: I miss Mick Foley. And fine, maybe I am pining just a bit for him to come back for one more match. After all, Bray will need an opponent after his program with John Cena is over.
Tom Clark is a WWE Featured Columnist & Consultant for Bleacher Report, a Contributor for JBL’s Layfield Report and a Contributor for Whatculture.com
Follow Tom on Twitter @tomclarkbr
[amazon_link id=”B00HRYH7G2″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ] Ultimate Warrior: The Ultimate Collection DVD[/amazon_link]
[amazon_link id=”B00JHH1YAW” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]WWE The Paul Heyman Story[/amazon_link]