There’s a weird friendship going on during WWE’s Raw, and I don’t mean the on-again, off-again, over-cuddly one that Chris Jericho and Kevin Owens have been fostering. No, that one I understand: they’re both guys who want to climb the ladder, so helping each other makes sense, and Kevin would like to actually keep a friend, because he’s always pretty bad at it. Nope, the one I’m talking about is the weird, silent friendship that seems to have cropped up between Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns.
So far this makes little to zero sense, because, well, we all remember Seth dismantling the Shield via a steel chair to Dean Ambrose and Roman’s backs, and then cuddling up to Triple H, before making Dean’s life an utter misery for months. Roman then spent a lot of time being best friends with Dean, holding together what was left of their shattered team, before the WWE title seemed to split the two of them even before the brands did.
Sure, a united force is helpful against a common enemy, and Roman and Seth certainly have that in Jericho and Owens, but the storyline has had to bend quite a lot for that to happen. Seth was originally after the WWE Universal Championship, while Roman chased the United States Championship, but Seth’s title chasing seems to have come to an abrupt halt. Now it’s Roman, holding the US title over his shoulder like a sack of potatoes, who’s chasing the Universal title, while Seth has his sights on Triple H. This change in Seth’s goals might be what we’re expected to believe has brought the two of them together, as Roman’s title hunt can help Seth’s goal to take apart Triple H’s champion in Kevin Owens, and Seth’s skill can help Roman get to the strap.
But we’ve seen and heard no conversation between the two about this. There have been no backstage segments where Seth and Roman are propped up awkwardly in a locker room set and Seth says “Hey, so, want to help me take down Triple H? There’s a title in it for you.” They’ve not discussed their aims in teaming up whatsoever. Of course, the numbers game wasn’t on their side when they were each battling the team of Chris and Kevin separately, but it would have been nice to see at least a few minutes of tactical chatter between the two of them, Roman not forgiving Seth, but knowing him well enough that he believes he could take him down if he betrayed him, or something like that.
As it is, the storyline right now looks like someone said “remember when you two were tag champs?” and they looked at each other, shrugged, and decided to start having each other’s backs, as if Roman completely forgot that Seth put a chair in his. It makes Roman look gullible, and without a segment where he points out to Seth that he doesn’t trust him, or having Seth do something on camera to earn that trust, the whole story is too full of holes. It feels like they’re working together out of convenience for the writers, and little else. With as many talking segments as we get on Raw, not telling us why these two are suddenly buddies just seems a little lazy.
Steph Maxwell-Kavanagh is an outspoken wrestling writer from the UK. She owns and writes for Rasslin Rehash, where she presents recaps, articles, and satirical pieces, with a feminist viewpoint.