Let me first preface this article by stating the following – NEW! DAY ROCKS! NEW! DAY ROCKS! While they may still rock, is The New Day on the verge of becoming stale? I hate to say it, but unless the WWE can make changes to their characters sooner rather than later, the crowd reactions might start to diminish.
Before getting into what exactly is making The New Day stale and what could be done to fix it, it must be said that their Tag Team Championship match against Y2AJ (RIP 2016-2016) on RAW was one of the best tag team matches I have seen in quite some time. All five men involved played their roles perfectly, and The New Day’s wrestling abilities has nothing to do with them becoming stale. In fact, if they weren’t so good in the ring, their act would have already been quite stale for many fans.
They can wrestle, they can talk, they’re funny, and they still elicit a great reaction from the crowd – what could possibly be wrong?
For the past few months, one of the things I look forward to the most on RAW is seeing The New Day come out and dance around and make fun of whoever their target happens to be that day. It’s funny, and it is literally the only thing my girlfriend enjoys when I make her watch the show. But for the last few months, however, it has been the same song and dance every week (pun intended). Big E will skip down to the ring, Kofi will pop his booty and clap, and Xavier Woods will play Francesca (again, RIP 2015-2016).
As entertaining as it is, the act in danger of getting stale unless the WWE changes things up a bit. Does Woods need to bring out the trombone every show? Probably not. Make it more of a special attraction. It was pretty funny the first couple weeks it was used, but the trombone was the first thing about The New Day that started getting old for me. The time between Francesca I and II could have been a little longer to make the second trombone unveiling more meaningful.
In terms of larger character changes, I think one of the biggest things WWE could do to freshen up The New Day is to flesh out their darker side. This was hinted upon once and never really followed up on – check out the October 5th episode of RAW where Big E takes on John Cena in the US Open Challenge. After losing to Cena (no surprise there), the group gangs up on the US champ, beating him down until Dolph Ziggler runs in for the save. Ziggler, who Big E had dismantled earlier on in the night and still visibly selling his injuries, was taken out with little effort. Then the Dudley Boyz, who were in the midst of a rivalry with the trio for the Tag Team tiles. Even though they were still over with the crowd at the time and despite the fact that they would be meeting The New Day at Hell in a Cell and needed the momentum, they were taken out easily as well.
The show closed with The New Day menacingly standing tall in the ring, not joking around or dancing. As Cena, Ziggler, and the Dudley Boyz lay motionless in the ring, JBL stated that it was a “power shift right here in front of our eyes.” A more serious version of the team was hinted at that night, but that angle was dropped the next week, and they reverted back to dancing and playing the trombone.
A team as talented as The New Day could have perfectly balanced these two personalities – heels who could just as easily beat you down as they could make fun of you. Instead, their silliness was amped up going forward, and they went from wearing an assortment of different outfit color combinations to wearing almost exclusively bright blue and pink and wearing unicorn horns. Their Titantron video now looks like a children’s cartoon.
Now, I’m not being sour on The New Day (I wouldn’t DARE BE SOUR), and literally anything would be better than the first version of the group that the crowd absolutely did not react to. But something needs to change. Bring back that more serious side that went over very well with the crowd, or perhaps just turn the group into full-on faces.
They seemed to be hinting at that by having The New Day make fun The League of Nations, and Wednesday, the WWE announced that they will be facing each other with the Tag Team Championship on the line at the WWE Roadblock Network special. With no character development, however, it looks like the matchup between the two groups will be heel vs. heel. Their most recent match this past Monday, while it was one of the best matches so far this year, was more about Chris Jericho turning on AJ Styles than it was about The New Day actually winning the match cleanly.
As of now, they do not have a match set up for WrestleMania, with the most likely scenario in Dallas being that multi-team match that always seems to involve Los Matadores. If something is not changed soon, The New Day will become stale, and that definitely would NOT rock.