[Side note, I feel like Shadows Over Asuka makes a great fan fiction title. Someone more creative than me get on it, and definitely tweet it at me]
WWE is a longstanding trainwreck. Just when you think they’ve cleared away the debris and rubble, another absurd and completely avoidable accident happens and we’re left watching them deal with damage control. Take for example, the 2018 Royal Rumble. Everything seemed to be okay and getting better, like the debris had nearly cleared. WWE had implemented the first ever Women’s Rumble match, which is a huge step that no one imagined happening in this century. To round out the night, both rumble matches were won by Japanese wrestlers: Shinsuke Nakamura and Asuka.
I know, pretty crazy considering WWE’s whiteness and racial tendencies. When this happened, I too was a shookie cookie.
In fact it was too good to be true, and as predicted, WWE found a way to cheapen the victory of the first ever women’s rumble winner. The debut of former UFC fighter: Ronda Rousey. It’s so amazing how ridiculous this moment was, I’m not sure if I should pick this apart by beginning with sex, or race.
Ya know what, let’s just throw in a mixture of both and see what sticks.
Shinsuke Nakamura, male, right? After his win he was allowed the opportunity to bask in the glory, to tan in the lights of the WrestleMania sign, to announce that he chose to go after AJ Styles’ title at WrestleMania. Good, great actually. No random white man decided to make their presence known by swinging their dick around and making sure everyone had their eyes on him. The attention, and rightfully so, was all on Shinsuke. That’s exactly how it should have been, all about the victor.
Then we have Asuka’s victory, and holy hell what a confusing mess this was. Asuka barely had a chance to speak for herself, nor did she get the chance to establish who exactly she wanted to go after come WrestleMania: Raw Women’s Champion Alexa Bliss, or SmackDown women’s Champion: Charlotte. Someone backstage felt it necessary for both women to make themselves known in case someone forgot what they, or the belts looked like.
Neither one is Brock Lesnar, we see the belts weekly and they’re defended. Don’t worry, we remember.
So here we have a Japanese women getting interrupted by not one, but two white women. Sure, that’s a swell plan. Let’s steal the spotlight from her.
Don’t worry, it gets better.
To make the grand total of three: three white women stealing the spotlight, WWE decides it’s a great time to introduce Ronda Rousey full time. She makes her entrance, in all of her 80’s coming of age movie glory sporting most of Rowdy Roddy Piper’s gimmick as she does so. This completely takes away any and all attention from Asuka and shines the spotlight on herself. Such a pivotal, crucial moment in WWE history absolutely eclipsed by this transphobic putrid hot mess of a woman whose hype train surrounding her lost its gas give or take a year ago.
That sends the wrong type of message. That says not only do you not value your winner, Asuka, very much, but that you don’t value the women of your division as highly as you do this woman coming in out of of the blue. She’s a fan? Great. Has she been shaping and molding your division, putting in blood, sweat, tears, and risking her life weekly for the sake of entertainment and trying to raise the value of the women’s division in the eyes of doubting fans everywhere?
Nope, she’s a quick cash grab.
The cherry and rainbow sprinkles on top of it all is that as of today, Ronda Rousey hasn’t been seen since. For a full time wrestler, she’s too busy filming a movie to make an appearance. Which means, of course, her debut in my eyes is considered a complete and utter waste. It was tasteless, ill-planned, and shone a poor light on whoever decided it was a wonderful idea to eclipse your inaugural winner for a has-been.