On last night’s Raw, WWE once again dug into their old bag of distasteful tricks in an attempt to generate some heat.
Prior to her tag match against the Riott Squad, a choked up Natalya said she was dedicating their upcoming bout to her recently deceased father, Jim ‘The Anvil’ Neidhart, and she even had his signature sunglasses he always wore to the ring.
As the match looked to be all but won for the faces and Nattie had Sarah Logan in the sharp shooter, Ruby Riott was on the outside and grabbed the glasses. Nattie let Logan out but then Riott proceeded to snap the shades in half, drop them to the ground and stomp them into pieces. Nattie was distraught after the heinous act and the match ended in a no contest.
Using a deceased family member or wrestler in an angle to get a heel some cheap heat is not a new WWE move. While they are usually approved by the living relatives, the company has received poor feedback in the past when resorting to this type of action.
Some of the most notable times they have used this in storylines are with Charlotte and Paige (using Charlotte’s deceased brother), Undertaker and CM Punk (using the passing of Paul Bearer) and Randy Orton and Rey Mysterio (using the passing of Eddie Guerrero).
With all the recent controversy around the company in regards to the Crown Jewel event and the return of Hulk Hogan, you would think that they would try to play things safe and not roll the dice on more borderline stories teetering on decency, but then again that has never stopped them in the past.