Nah, I'm just as pessimistic as you when it comes to the future, we all know it will end with him putting over Rollins or Reigns then sliding down the card, but he'll murder Balor. Apparently he's taking time off after Summerslam, so it'll be an injury angle to write him off tv.
I can't tell if the mask is cool or lame, I'm going back and forth. Kinda like a Pennywise/Joker vibe to it.
That because it's based on The Joker. It's from the New 52 run of The Joker, where The Joker had another villain (I forget who) cut his face off and then stitched it back on his face.
The mask was created by horror movie prosthetic make up artist legend Tom Savini, who's done the special effects for numerous recognizable horror movies including Dawn Of The Dead and Friday The 13'th.
I think it's kinda cool, I guess, but it isn't as cool as the design of the comics and it looks a bit thick. Bray is all in on it, though, he loved the mask and said it saved his career. Somehow I doubt that.
He won't squash Balor. No chance in hell. He might injure him post match, but Balor will be competitive, way too much so, because they think he needs to be protected in defeat, because for some reason, even though Vince doesn't like Balor at all and won't use him in any top capacity, he still wants to somewhat protect him by not turning him into a Dolph Ziggler who just gets Stunned and pinned.
Look at how much they gave Balor against Brock. Bray isn't protected anywhere near the degree that Brock is.