The September 2nd, 2019 episode of Monday Night RAW marked the heel turn of the once baby face and role model, Bayley, as she joined the returning Sasha Banks to take out Becky Lynch.
After making a name for herself on the black and gold brand her call up to the main roster resulted in huge success. She was the first woman ever to capture the NXT, RAW and Smackdown Women's Championships as well as women's tag team gold. She also became Ms. Money In The Bank in 2019 and went on to successfully cash in against The Queen, Charlotte Flair.
Despite her undoubted success I still felt that her baby face character wasn't connecting with the WWE fans in the same way it did to light up the Full Sail arena on Wednesday nights. With her character becoming stale, her heel turn was a welcomed move from WWE creative and I was intrigued to see how she would handle stepping out of her comfort zone.
My initial excitement soon began to evaporate as destroying her inflatable 'Bayley Buddies' wasn't enough to convince me that she was a believable heel. I was so unconvinced that I wanted Bayley to reveal that she couldn't carry on portraying a person she is not and that she was only acting out of loyalty to her partner and friend Sasha Banks. This would result in Sasha turning on her to set up what would surely be another classic match between two of the biggest stars in WWE.
Fast forward to the present day and I couldn't be happier to be proven wrong by all concerned. By allowing this storyline and character evolvement to run its course we now have two leading ladies as the MVP's of professional wrestling with the clamour for their eventual feud at an all time high.
Witnessing Bayley's transformation from the ultimate baby face to a seemingly natural heel acts as a reminder that storylines and character development deserve the chance to reach their potential before totally writing them off.
With all due respect to the current Smackdown Women's Champion, I have always identified Banks as the main star of the two, whether that be as opponents or as partners. Living up to her nickname 'The Boss' Sasha appeared to be the boss of their relationship and carried herself with the swagger and confidence of a born leader.
In recent months however you could argue that it's Bayley who has become the new leader as she has orchestrated her and Sasha's dominance across WWE's three main brands. With Bayley calling the shots the pair have found success on RAW, Smackdown and NXT to become the 'must see' act in WWE.
Not only have they had a positive impact on ratings but they have made the women's tag team division relevant for the first time since they were crowned the first ever Women's Tag Team Champions. Their talents seem to know no bounds as they have even excelled as part of the WWE commentary team. Bayley in particular has used this platform to cement her place as the top woman heel in the business as well as enhancing the atmosphere during the empty arena era.
I think it's safe to assume that the longest reigning Smackdown women's champion ever will eventually defend her title against Sasha to reignite a feud which produced some of the best matches in NXT history. What isn't as easy to predict is when this match will happen?
Not so long ago I felt slightly underwhelmed by the booking of this pair and was hoping that WWE would accelerate the break-up story to give the fans the match they craved. Credit to WWE and their excellent booking however, as I now hold the opinion that they should stick with the Bayley and Sasha domination, at least until WWE events are back in big arenas with fans in attendance.
Despite the duo's dominance cracks have began to appear in their relationship. At times Bayley has almost used Banks as a shield, with The Boss seemingly happy to accept her current role as the supporting act. What is obvious to fans however is that Sasha does not accept that role at all, she's the self-proclaimed 'Blueprint' and the way she gazes at that Smackdown Women's Championship indicates her friendship with Bayley is secondary to the title.
Until recently I always imagined that Banks would be the heel going into a potential showdown for the Smackdown Women's Title. At this moment in time however, I can't imagine anything but heel Bayley versus face Sasha, so, huge credit to the champion for being so impressive and showing full commitment to her character. Plus, heel Bayley walking out to that absolute BANGER of a theme song is something I don't want to lose any time soon.
With Extreme Rules just around the corner will Sasha become 'Two Belts Banks' as she challenges Asuka for the RAW Women’s Championship? Or could 'Bayley Dos Straps' cost her friend inadvertently or otherwise to set up a showdown worthy of main eventing any of WWE's 'Big Four' pay per views?
Whatever happens I am fully invested in Bayley as a heel and I cannot wait for these two to tear the house down one more time.
Would love to hear your thoughts on this article and how you would book Bayley going forward? You can reach out on Twitter @CresswellDJ or @wnwnews.
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