Stephanie McMahon is the top heel in the WWE. When you think about it, it’s not hard to understand why. Vince McMahon was probably the greatest villain in the history of professional wrestling, and Stephanie spent many years watching her father perform.
The secret to being a truly great heel is to eliminate any and all positive character traits. Vince McMahon was successful because he understood how to make people loathe him. Moreover, he developed a character that people loved to hate. In other words, fans were willing to shell out record dollars to jeer their favorite bad guy.
Stephanie isn’t very far behind. She’s not quite at Vince’s level, but Stephanie understands what it’s going to take to get there. Her performances get better each week, and she’s coming into her own as the despicable “authority” figure.
Her mannerisms, delivery and especially her facial expressions are very reminiscent of Vince at his best. Having a great “evil face” must be a McMahon family trait, and just like her papa, Stephanie is excellent at portraying a wholly evil boss. Selfish, corrupt and devoid of any moral scruples, Stephanie wants what’s best for her and her husband and couldn’t care less about any other human being in the world. How could you not hate somebody like that? It’s perfect.
Her segment with Daniel Bryan and Brie Bella at Payback was a case of pro wrestling mastery. When Brie slapped Steph across the face, the Allstate Center absolutely exploded. Fans reveled in her embarrassment, living vicariously through the heroics and bravery of their beloved babyfaces.
Instead of rendering the slap meaningless by no-selling it, Stephanie played up her humiliation perfectly. When she ran away with her tail between her legs, she let the audience know just how upset she was. Bryan and Brie may have won the night, but you can’t help but anticipate Stephanie’s revenge.
What does Stephanie have in store for Bryan? His wife may no longer be “employed,” but he still has a claim to the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. What else can Stephanie do to make his life miserable? Will Bryan be able to overcome the odds yet again? These are great questions in the world of professional wrestling. Why? Because you’ll have to tune in to find out.