Jerico, Punk’s Feud Getting Personal


Personal demons have long been exploited for the sake of advancing a professional wrestling storyline.

As a matter of fact, current WWE Champion CM Punk is no stranger to it, as he himself brought Jeff Hardy’s history with drugs and addiction into their feud a few years ago.

But when it comes to Punk’s current battle with Chris Jericho, one has to wonder what exactly is the point? The promo exchange between the two the past few weeks hasn’t focused on Punk’s demons but those of his family.

Up until this point, fans have been clamoring to see the WrestleMania program between the two based solely on competition and each man proving he truly deserves the title of “best in the world.”

That issue alone should have been enough to fuel this feud all the way to 1 April, but WWE decided to add another layer to the story by introducing Punk’s father’s alcoholism and, as Jericho brought up Monday night on Raw, his sister’s history with drugs.

The story is taken right from Punk’s feud with Raven in Ring of Honor, making this the second storyline WWE has lifted from the independent promotion in less than a year when it comes to Punk.

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There’s a difference, though. Ring of Honor, especially at the time, pushed the limits and tried to be edgy. Things worked well in that environment, and the scene of Raven pouring beer down the straight-edge Punk’s mouth is a visual still talked about today.

An angle like that worked in ROH, but it has no place in today’s WWE environment. The product, especially in recent years, has been aimed and directed at a younger audience. Yes, this is probably an effort to appeal to the older demographic, which constantly clamors for an edgier product.

But everyone knows WWE won’t go all in when it comes to pushing those boundaries. This angle tests the waters, but it simply doesn’t fit with the current atmosphere of the company, and quite frankly, this feud doesn’t need it.

Sometimes simplicity is the best path to follow. Seeing Jericho and Punk battle for the title of “best in the world” would have made a more compelling story for me than Punk fighting to prove that he won’t fall victim to the demons that have plagued his family.

What started off as a red-hot program has now devolved into something that leaves me wondering how it will pay itself off. Punk isn’t overcoming any personal struggle in this story, except for baggage of his family. That just doesn’t cut it for me.

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