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Author: Subject: Is it possible to have a career as a pure heel/ face anymore?
George Banks
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posted on 6-16-2005 at 03:40 PM Edit Post
Is it possible to have a career as a pure heel/ face anymore?

I had this thought from our discussion of Jericho as a tweener.

But it had me thinking about who was the last guy to spend his entire WWE career as a heel or as a face.

Every big name I can think of has had at least one or two major turns. Even Hogan.

I was just wondering whether anyone thought that this is a good or a bad thing. Reading people's opinons on say Hassan/ Davari a face-turn for one of them seems like an inevitability down the line. As did a heel-turn for Eugene back when he was around.

What I'm asking, I suppose, is whether you think it hurts the impact of booking big matches. The WWE seem to be struggling to turn Eddie heel at the moment, despite the fact that he is, in my opinon at least, a natural heel.

Every single guy I can think of had silly turns: Austin's heel-turn, Angle's face-turn, HHH's face-turn etc. etc.

However with that said, I believe that this trend - a by-product of the Russo-era of a shock every five seconds - is starting to fade out. John Cena seems like an old-school kayfabe face and I can't see Edge or Christian being faces any time soon. I can't see HHH or JBL having another face run, or Angle for that matter. It seems like the 'turn' is finally becoming the beautful rarity it once was. So that when one partner turns on another a la Strike Force (Martel/ Santana) or the Rockers (Michaels/ Jannetty) it has genuine impact - I think Eddie/ Rey had something of this despite the continued cheers for Eddie and general apathy towards Rey.

Anyway - with regard to the original question I can only think of a few guys all from the kayfabe epoch:

Permanent Faces: The Ultimate Warrior, Tito Santana um... I'm pretty stuck for any more.

Permanent Heels: Ted Dibiase, IRS, The Mountie/ Jacques, Bobby 'the Brain' Heenan, Slick, Mr. Fuji, Warlord & Barbarian, Dino Bravo...

So two issues have emerged really one technical, one a point of discussion.

1. Who spent their entire WWE career (all incarnations included) as either a face or a heel?

2. Are frequent turns a good thing or a bad thing? How does it impact on matches and the believability of characters?





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metallikid
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posted on 6-16-2005 at 03:55 PM Edit Post
I think Ricky Steamboat spent his entire career across all promotions as a babyface. That is pretty impressive.





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posted on 6-16-2005 at 03:58 PM Edit Post
Ricky Steamboat was a face whis entire WWE run

I think heel/face turns have gone the route of the quick title switch, they are used way too often, and are often so telegraphed that you see them coming for weeks.

It seems like it is an extension of lazy booking as well, "let's see we have nothing for this guy this week, and we just had a out-of-the-blue title switch last week, so lets turn him!" Most of the time they don't make a whole lot of sense, and in the rare instance that they actually DO make sense, the writers usually drop a couple hundred anvil's on our head beforeheand.

The best heel turn I can think of was back in NWA when Windham turned on Luger after they had won the tag titles. At the time, I never saw it coming. Of course both Luger and Windham were a couple of guys who suffered from the too frequent turns, Luger was went from face to heel and back a couple of hundred times during his career





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George Banks
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posted on 6-16-2005 at 04:04 PM Edit Post
Yes - I suppose you could call it Luger-syndrome.

Luger is a good example though because, in my eyes at least, the man is a heel. He is a natural heel. He was truned back and forth in NWA/ WCW because they always had an abundance of great heels and nowhere near the pre-requisite calibre of main event faces to challenge them. Hell - even Rick Rude had a stint as a face in WCW!

For whatever reason, I saw and still think of WCW as being predominantly a fed for top heels and WWF being a fed for top faces. With Dibiase being the only notable exception from back then and, arguably, HHH now.

[Edited on 6-16-2005 by George Banks]





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outback jack
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posted on 6-16-2005 at 05:56 PM Edit Post
In WWF, JYD and Hillbilly Jim (and relatives) may have been pure faces. Dynamite Kid, Killer Bees also, I think.

Yokozuna, Akeem/OMG, Bundy and Studd probably were always heels.

The Rougeaus and Mike Rotundo (IRS) did debut as faces.






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posted on 6-16-2005 at 06:04 PM Edit Post
didn't Bundy have a really short face run toward the end of his stay in WWE? Maybe not





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posted on 6-16-2005 at 06:18 PM Edit Post
100% face runs not yet mentioned: Rey Mysterio (@ least in North America), Jeff Hardy (I don't think he was ever a heel, even with the New Brood...tweener maybe), 911, Torrie Wilson, and Linda E. McMahon.

100% heels...Andy Kaufman baby!






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metallikid
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posted on 6-16-2005 at 06:26 PM Edit Post
Hardyz were heels in the New Brood. I'm not buying that tweener crap.





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posted on 6-16-2005 at 06:31 PM Edit Post
quote:
Originally posted by outback jack
Yokozuna, Akeem/OMG, Bundy and Studd probably were always heels.



Yokozuna did go face at the end of his run in the WWF. I remember in particular his feud with Vader, and Yoko wanting to kill Cornette (around WM12 time period)

also- in the original post here, George Banks says Warlord and Barbarian were permanent heels...the Powers of Pain were actually faces when they started, then them and Demolition did the double switch at Survivor Series. Demos dumped Fuji, Powers of Pain picked up Fuji and turned heel.


[Edited on 6-16-2005 by cpdevine1]





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metallikid
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posted on 6-16-2005 at 06:33 PM Edit Post
Studd was a face when he won Royal Rumble.





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posted on 6-16-2005 at 06:35 PM Edit Post
I feel that the shock value of quite turns is going the way of of of the Dodo.
I feel that it is a good thing.
when you keep someone face or heel for a long period of time the fans can really get behind the faces and against the heels.
Beniot, rvd, mysterio, and shelton have been kept faces and the crowds belive in them.
Angle, jbl, and HHH has been a heel for so long the crowds despise him.

if you turn a person to much to fast then the audience gets confused and becomes apathetic.

plus heel turns offen seem illogical, rember when booker t turn heel against cena and had to cheet to win ever match?
he had been winning cleanly before and started winning cleanly against the heels after he turned back.

and I it seems weird when JR is crying about how henoius some one is when just a few months early (or even weeks) he was singing their praises.

I feel the only time you turn some one ( with the exception of the occasional shocking turn. which should be used very seldomly [see WCW being booked under russo] or it becomes expected) is whenthe fans demand it. Like christian about to go face or edge going heel last year (which was sett up beatifuly with him slowly starting to cheat and getting parionod)

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posted on 6-16-2005 at 06:49 PM Edit Post
To digress a little,

quote:
Originally posted by Jheaton

and I it seems weird when JR is crying about how henoius some one is when just a few months early (or even weeks) he was singing their praises.





The worst was when he kept praising Austin and almost went orgasmic at the end of each show "Rattlesnake! Rattlesnake! Austin! Austin!"

This for a man who stunnered him on more than one occasion.

Does he feel sorry for the guy who tried to set him on fire, Kane?

I feel Lawler is more consistent in this regard.





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posted on 6-16-2005 at 07:19 PM Edit Post
With all due respect to George Banks and Outback Jack, a couple of wrestlers on each of their lists did indeed have allegiance turns during their careers... of course, in some cases, you have to look beyond the WWF/E tenure to find it.

I vaguely recall an angle in which Yokozuna was a face, I believe after firing Mr. Fuji, in the months prio to his departure. John Studd, during his grand return shortly before his death, was actually a face as well. After Dynamite Kid's return to Calgary after his final WWF run, he went on a heel bender of sorts. Dino Bravo was a face champ in Montreal's Lutte Internationale before heading to the WWF in (I think) '86. The Powers of Pain (Warlord and Barbarian) debuted in WWF as faces (with pseudo-manager Baron Von Raschke). Also, Teddy Beassey (thx, Bulldog!) was a face manager-type when he arrived in wCw during the height of the the nWo rise to power -- and was the de facto face in a feud with Michael P.S. Hayes prior to his being called up to the bigs in about '86-87.

If I am incorrect in any of this, or anyone can add pieces to my somewhat slipshod memories, please feel free.

EDITED to apologize for taking so long to post... just forgot to submit. (oops)


[Edited on 6-16-2005 by roxtar]





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posted on 6-16-2005 at 08:00 PM Edit Post
roxtar, you are right about those, but I think he was referring to just their WWF/E days

The Ultimate Warrior debuted as a heel in the UWF, but, that was also well before his wwf days

but one other that I am not sure about, was Adrian Adonis ever a face? I know he wasn't during his WWE run, but I'm not sure about the rest of his career

[Edited on 6-16-2005 by mooseheadjack]





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George Banks
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posted on 6-16-2005 at 09:02 PM Edit Post
Just to clarify - WWF/E run ONLY. Almost all the guys I mentioned have been heel/ face at other times in their career. Even Dibiase was a face once upon a-time and of course when he managed the Steiners in WCW.

I need my head checked I tell you. Not only did I forget Mike Rotunda's first stint in WWF circa Wrestlemania 1 but I also forgot about the famous Powers of Pain/ Demolition double turn. *I need to be shot!*.

Another one though: Ludwig Borga was only ever heel!





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posted on 6-16-2005 at 09:46 PM Edit Post
Koko B Ware must have been a face - just can't see his WWF character being a heel.

The Von Erich brothers, including Kerry in WWF, were pretty much all faces in WCCW.






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posted on 6-16-2005 at 10:08 PM Edit Post
Koko was a face his entire WWE run, so let's see the list is now:

Faces

Koko
Steamboat
Warrior
Tito
JYD
Hillbilly Jim (and all related hillbilly family)
Dynamite Kid
Killer Bees
Torrie Wilson
Linda McMahon
Rey Mysterio
Kerry Von Erich

Heels

Dibiase*
Iron Shiek
Akeem/One Man Gang
Bundy
Bobby Heenan
Mr. Fuji
Dino Bravo**
Adrian Adonis

* Dibiase was also in the WWF in the early 80's, I think he won the Intercontinental title from Pat Patterson or something like that, or was in the "tourney" or something. But I don't remember if he worked as face or heel

** I think way back when, maybe in the 70's Dino Bravo was in the WWF as a face in a tag team, but I would have to look that up.

And the Von Erich's were uber faces in Texas, the only one that ever had a heel run was David von Erich, and he had to go to Florida to do that



[Edited on 6-16-2005 by mooseheadjack]





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posted on 6-16-2005 at 10:41 PM Edit Post
I do believe that with the exception of his referee stint a few years back, Jesse The Body Ventura was a heel his entire WWF run.

Ravishing Rick Rude was a heel his entire WWF run, also.





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George Banks
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posted on 6-17-2005 at 12:22 AM Edit Post
I was thining about Rude, ModSquad2004 but wasn't he involved with a face DX outfit circa 1997?

If DX were heel when he was involved then he can be added.

Moosehead - I'm fairly sure that Dibiase worked for Vince Sr. in WWWF. I suppose he is right at the cut-off point which I would cite as when Vince Jr. took over around 1979 (is this right?). In any case, he wrestled against Hulk Hogan in the Hulk's debut match so I'm guessing he was a de facto heel.

I've just thought of another one too, possibly: Haku - wasn't he heel all the way? Even in his 2000/1 comeback.

And if not Haku what about Tully Blanchard - 100% heel in WWF.





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posted on 6-17-2005 at 01:04 AM Edit Post
Hey Banky, have you ever considered the possibility that you should spend more time outside?





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posted on 6-17-2005 at 01:15 AM Edit Post
Was Christian ever a face? I can't remember it.





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posted on 6-17-2005 at 01:21 AM Edit Post
When the brood turned against the Ministry I'm pretty sure he was.

I think Tommy Dreamer's always been a face.





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posted on 6-17-2005 at 05:09 AM Edit Post
Okay, so I'm old school...

Banks/Moose -- Ted Dibiase did wrestle for the WWWF before heading to the UWF and eventually back to the WWF to be The Million Dollar Man. He held the short lived North American title. Did Dibiase go face at all after his Money, Inc. run? Also, if we're talking WWF/E only, then his run in the "WWWF" shouldn't count. Vinnie Mac wasn't running things at the time.

Mod004 -- Rick Rude was a heel the entire tenure. D-X were still heels when he appeared briefly with them (he didn't have a contract and subsequently jumped to WCW and appeared on both a pre-taped RAW and a live Nitro at the same time). I don't remember Rude being a face in WCW at all, or even in World Class (WCCW) when he started there as "Rick Rood."

Roxtar is right about Yokozuna as well, he did have a brief WWF face run.

Trickstar/Stormtrooper -- Christian was a face following the Ministry/Brood split. E & C were also turned by the fans after all the damn TLC matches, too.

Wayback to cpdevine's post -- they did a brief face run with Akeem after the Twin Towers broke up, I think. Very short lived.

Also...Mohammed Hassan has been a heel for his entire WWE run as well! However, there should be some sort of time restriction placed on these people if we're to consider them.

Finally -- Has RVD ever really been a heel in the WWF/E? Was he the heel during his Invasion feud with Jeff Hardy, even though the fans were decidedly on the side of the Alliance?






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George Banks
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posted on 6-17-2005 at 10:42 AM Edit Post
G-B - Dibiase never went face in WWF. He left after losing to Razor Ramon at the much maligned Summerslam 93 and re-emerged still as 'The Million Dollar Man' at Royal Rumble 1994 to commentate (not a bad job) soon after he starts the Million Dollar Corporation before jumping to WCW as the 'money' behind the NWO. This is ultimately short lived as WCW had NO IDEA what to do and Dibiase became the face manager of the Steiners before disappearing despite remaining on WCW's payroll. He's with the WWE as an agent now but I noticed that on one website that he is contract stipulates "per performance" on it so maybe.

I'm fairly sure Rude was face around 1993/4 in WCW. However I may be wrong, maybe a buff like Promoter could help out with this as I'm no WCW expert.

Finally Akeem was never face, it was Bigboss Man who turned face. Akeem was still being managed by Slick and was marketed as a heel the whole time.





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posted on 6-17-2005 at 12:22 PM Edit Post
quote:
Originally posted by George Banks
I've just thought of another one too, possibly: Haku - wasn't he heel all the way? Even in his 2000/1 comeback.



Haku was a face as "King Tonga" before he became Haku.





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