With Barrett, he's someone who's given the worst material to work with as far as mic work goes, and makes it passable. He's an incredibly gifted mic worker and has confidence and delivery down to a tee, but he rarely gets to speak riveting stuff, and hasn't since his Nexus days.
The biggest problem besides his material and his lack of a true character for most of his singles run, has been his in ring work. He's improved leaps and bounds in the ring since those horrendous main events with Orton in 2010 and actually had 2-3 good ones with Orton in 2011-2012. Even back in 2010 when he was horrendous in the ring, he still had some good-great matches with Jericho and Cena. But he also had an excellent match with Bryan at Summerslam last year, which I put as his best match (****). He had several decent-good TV matches around that period with Sheamus, Kofi, Orton, and a few others. I also remember a very good TV match with him and Mysterio from early in 2011, but can't remember when or if it was Raw/SD. And hell, since his return he's had good matches with Ryder, Sheamus, and from what I saw of his match with Kidd on Superstars, that was a good one as well. It's true he can still have horrendous matches and his brawling style is probably very boring to a lot of people, especially when only utilized in squash environments, and he does need at least a good worker to have a good match, but I think he can be one of those big match players in the future. He proved he's capable with his match against Cena at HIAC in 2010, and now I'm sure if they revisited that, the match would be even better.
Plus what I also love about him is he has such the natural appearance, presence, and charisma of a heel. He get a decent amount of heat compared to most of the roster if he's doing something, and he could definitely be the top heel for the company again if WWE ever wants to go with him.
One thing that he has to change though if he wants to get a substantial amount of heat again the second he walks through those curtains is his theme music. Since he changed it earlier this year, it's been horrendous, and while his current version is better than what it was, it just screams "JOBBER MUSIC!"
As far as the comparison to Miz, back in 2010 their in-ring work was comparably bad and they were close together in that field. However now? Barrett's far above Miz imo in every category.
Also, going back to Sheamus, I love the chemistry Barrett has with Sheamus and want them to fucking feud already.
(it's funny how many people in forums call out Orton for sounding like a robot yet give Barrett a pass)
Meh, they both get equally robotic material but Barrett sounds extremely lively compared to Orton nowadays imo.
It's sad to, because I used to be such a big mark for Orton. Back in 2004-2005, he was probably my favorite wrestler in the company bar Undertaker, and mid-way/end of 2005 on, Edge. I was even a bigger mark than I am for Punk now. I remained a mark through 2006, and 2007 but then I just started getting bored of him shortly after NM 07. By WM that year, while I was still a fan, I wasn't as interested in him anymore. The whole Orton/McMahons angle made me a big fan again, but then after that gets screwed up, followed by some more terrible booking of Orton, I lost all interest in him again and by the time he won the WWE Title in 2010, I couldn't even call myself a fan. And my opinion on him has gone down and down ever since then as well. I still do like when they put him in the ring with mid-card guys because I always feel there's a chance the mid-card guy could win, which I don't get when a mid-carder would face Cena. And I like the fact he's been a much better worker since moving to SD in 2011. But ultimately Orton fails to hold my interest anymore, and it's not entirely his fault as WWE booking and his character really hold him back, but I also feel, especially since losing the title to Henry and now since his return, he's taken a very laid-back and lazy approach to how he does things. It's a shame when looking back considering I was such a huge mark back in the day.