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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Since he came over to RAW in the 2005 Draft, John Cena has been known to recieve mixed reactions at times.

But has that only been the case because of the brand switch?

I remember when he WWE Champion for about 2 and a half months on SmackDown prior to the Draft- and don't recall SmackDown fans giving him the type of boos we'd see sometimes on RAW.

(And when he was a babyface on SmackDown, most of the crowd seemed to be on Cena's side as opposed to RAW, when there have been tendencies to have the women and children cheering him, but males boong)

Was this mainly due to the brand switch from SmackDown to RAW, or would he have gotten mixed reactions had he stayed on SmackDown?
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Surprised nobody's responded to this.
 

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I think so.

On Smackdown!, Cena only went over JBL, someone everyone hated both for his excellent heel promos and for the fact he was painful to watch in the ring. Not only that, but in the buildup to the Wrestlemania 21 match, they put Cena in many segments where he crudely embarrassed/vandalized/humiliated JBL, in fitting with his Thug/Rapper gimmick. People loved seeing that happen, especially if it was to JBL.

Conversely, when he moved to Raw, it coincided with Batista being demoted by being sent to Smackdown. Batista was effectively a fan-made star, and was the hottest act in the company for the first half of 2005, with his status solidified by going over Triple H on PPV 3 times in a row. The fans had chosen Batista to be a big star, he became one, and the WWE plants him firmly on the backburner for Cena as his reward for increasing gates and becoming big.

Once on RAW, Cena was already facing some dislike for being shoved down people's throats, with Batista getting exiled and whatnot. Moreover, they also started to distance Cena away from the Thug/Rapper gimmick, instead going for the widely-hated Superman business.

All of this was exacerbated when he a) was visibly booed in the segments where Christian came off much better than he did, b) destroyed Jericho and Christian at Vengeance, then destroyed Jericho at Summerslam, and c) was still not very good in the ring at that point. Which was why he was paired with guys like Jericho and Christian at the start so he could have good matches, especially after his matches with JBL sucked.

However, this all jumped up a notch after he started steamrolling and owning Kurt freaking Angle consistently, at which point fans started to get really angry with how he was being booked as a guy that could've beat Godzilla into a pulp while handcuffed. This discontent came to a head when Triple H tapped to him at Wrestlemania 22.

At any rate, it wasn't until around the 2006 feud with Edge, where he- GASP - started losing and not destroying him constantly- that the hate kind of started to level off.

Basically, it was a combination of Batista getting screwed, SuperCena replacing rapper Cena, and liked/respected guys getting punked over and over to make him look good that sparked the mixed reactions on Raw.
 

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^ Excellent post, pretty much sums it all up.

I've always hated Cena though. Even during his popular heel rapper gimmick.

EDIT: Referring to 2ManyLimes post.
 

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I think so.

On Smackdown!, Cena only went over JBL, someone everyone hated both for his excellent heel promos and for the fact he was painful to watch in the ring. Not only that, but in the buildup to the Wrestlemania 21 match, they put Cena in many segments where he crudely embarrassed/vandalized/humiliated JBL, in fitting with his Thug/Rapper gimmick. People loved seeing that happen, especially if it was to JBL.

Conversely, when he moved to Raw, it coincided with Batista being demoted by being sent to Smackdown. Batista was effectively a fan-made star, and was the hottest act in the company for the first half of 2005, with his status solidified by going over Triple H on PPV 3 times in a row. The fans had chosen Batista to be a big star, he became one, and the WWE plants him firmly on the backburner for Cena as his reward for increasing gates and becoming big.

Once on RAW, Cena was already facing some dislike for being shoved down people's throats, with Batista getting exiled and whatnot. Moreover, they also started to distance Cena away from the Thug/Rapper gimmick, instead going for the widely-hated Superman business.

All of this was exacerbated when he a) was visibly booed in the segments where Christian came off much better than he did, b) destroyed Jericho and Christian at Vengeance, then destroyed Jericho at Summerslam, and c) was still not very good in the ring at that point. Which was why he was paired with guys like Jericho and Christian at the start so he could have good matches, especially after his matches with JBL sucked.

However, this all jumped up a notch after he started steamrolling and owning Kurt freaking Angle consistently, at which point fans started to get really angry with how he was being booked as a guy that could've beat Godzilla into a pulp while handcuffed. This discontent came to a head when Triple H tapped to him at Wrestlemania 22.

At any rate, it wasn't until around the 2006 feud with Edge, where he- GASP - started losing and not destroying him constantly- that the hate kind of started to level off.

Basically, it was a combination of Batista getting screwed, SuperCena replacing rapper Cena, and liked/respected guys getting punked over and over to make him look good that sparked the mixed reactions on Raw.
This pretty much sums it all up. Not only did they put the then terrible cena in feuds with guys who are some of the best in ring workers in the business and have them run over like a freight train, but they also changed the character that fans took a liking to. They changed him from the badboy rapper to the the super marine, a character straight out of the "universal soldier" movies, only more patriotic
 

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i think he would of just got cheers tbh, people who watch smackdown, in my opioun are hardcore fans that live and breath what wwe do and are happy with all outcomes.

raw fans are more critical of stuff, hence the more boos
 

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Basically, it was a combination of Batista getting screwed, SuperCena replacing rapper Cena, and liked/respected guys getting punked over and over to make him look good that sparked the mixed reactions on Raw.
This (and the post that included it) perfectly sums up what happened with Cena in 2005-2006. It was bad enough that a still fairly green Cena dominated Christian and Jericho, but many smarky/older fans really lost their patience when Cena started making Kurt Angle his bitch.

I'm convinced Kurt had a problem with it, too. That's probably why, after the writers tired of having Cena steamroll Angle every week, they gave Kurt a consolation prize by immediately moving him to Smackdown and having him win the World Heavyweight Championship.
 

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To say that John Cena was not chosen by the fan's would be very wrong because he was a heel that began getting cheered much more than being booed so WWE had no choice but to turn him face, the fan's had began to behind him big time. In 2004 there could be an argument for him being the most popular wrestler in the company at that time and he was only ever going to go forward from there as he was 25 or 26 years old and almost certainly a long term main event star.

As popular as Batista began to get in late 2004/early 2005 what needs to be remembered is that he was being pushed hard and being given the top storyline and feud against the biggest and top heel in the company whereas John Cena didn't have anywhere near as much put into his feud going into WrestleMania 21. There was a reason that John Cena was moved to Raw and Batista to SmackDown and that was as an all round in ring performer and as a character John Cena was better, younger and more entertaining than Batista was whilst just as popular as well.

Back on topic though and John Cena's mixed reactions came about as a result of WWE doing what The IWC always wants to see and that was WWE pushing younger wrestler's to the top and having fresh people in the main event scene. On the back of going over JBL we then saw great in ring workers used to help John Cena learn in the ring as well as make him look great and cedible as WWE champion which is exactly what Chris Jericho, Christian and Kurt Angle all did but because WWE pushed him hard the fan's turned on him because he was not an established star in their eyes whereas Chris Jericho and Kurt Angle were and they were also very respected and well liked even as heel's.

The thing is though that outside of a few times when he recieved boo's from everyone in the crowd John Cena's mixed reactions back then were the same thing that Hulk Hogan, Shawn Michaels and The Rock all recieved as face's as well and they were all very established and had been around for a while so it wasn't as if John Cena was the first top face to recieve that kind of reaction. I remember The Rock getting booed a hell of a lot in 2002 and i also remember Hulk Hogan getting the same in WCW in 1995 and 1996 which is one of the main reasons he turned heel by joining The New World Order.
 

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They moved Batista, the homegrown and homemade star from Raw to SD and swapped him with Cena. Fine. They then proceeded to super push Cena over established favorites like Jericho, Angle and then HHH. Not so fine.
 

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Can we be sure that Cena's reactions on Smackdown were genuine, being that Smackdown is an edited show? Just a theory.
 

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Cena started getting mixed reactions when he showed himself to be a fake on Raw when he debuted his video "Right Now". Evo was the 1st to talk about that a while back. You had Cena being the doctor of THUGanomics and he shows a video where he's got a 3 story house and a football field as a front yard. He was nothing like what he had been portraying himself to be. He was basically a wanksta.
 

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I always thought that they should've kept Cena at Smackdown for a little longer after he won the title. It would have been better to see John Cena defend his championship against Smackdown's top talent for a while first; Guerrero, Mysterio, Booker T, Undertaker and even Muhammad Hassan could've stepped up and challenged Cena before he switched over to Raw. He could even have fought another big match against JBL.
 

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Can we be sure that Cena's reactions on Smackdown were genuine, being that Smackdown is an edited show? Just a theory.

You beat me to it! I totally agree, RAW is a live show and the pops come across as they really are. On Smackdown, with the editing, anyone can be made sound extremely popular. When Randy Orton was on SD a few weeks ago, his reaction was his biggest I have heard in ages.....but again thats down to clever editing!
 

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because he caters to kids and people know that the way to save him not that he really need saving just to get him his respect back would be to turn heel i would love to see the faces on those kids then.
 

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You beat me to it! I totally agree, RAW is a live show and the pops come across as they really are. On Smackdown, with the editing, anyone can be made sound extremely popular. When Randy Orton was on SD a few weeks ago, his reaction was his biggest I have heard in ages.....but again thats down to clever editing!

This says so. Because if he wasn't gettin loud pops on SD then he wouldn't have been gettin it on Raw.
 

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As others have said I think the main reason is they basically turned his character on it's head in 2005.

All the stuff that made the Dr of Thuganomics a star (the rapping, the ****** clothes, the chain etc) was slowly taken away and replaced with some sort of vanilla babyface Hulk Hogan superman act.

His moveset was simplified more than it already was and his appeal shifted to kids and not the older audience who made him a star in the first place (or had a big part in it anyway.)

I contend if they had kept the Cena rapper gimmick going and kept him more of a tweener in a Stone Cold/Rock type ilk, he would have full babyface support (like a babyface should) and be a bigger star than he is now.
 

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I think the mixed reaction was happening even before he moved to Raw, I remember when Vince and Christian had a segment hyping up the draft, he mentioned John Cena to which the audience jeered, and then proceeded to say "I'd kick Marky Mark's ass and take his WWE Title away, cause that's how I roll!" to the delight of the audience.

But keep in mind that the brand extension is pretty much well defined at that point, and there may have been Hardcore loyal Raw fans and hardcore loyal Smackdown fans.
 

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Since he came over to RAW in the 2005 Draft, John Cena has been known to recieve mixed reactions at times.

But has that only been the case because of the brand switch?

I remember when he WWE Champion for about 2 and a half months on SmackDown prior to the Draft- and don't recall SmackDown fans giving him the type of boos we'd see sometimes on RAW.

(And when he was a babyface on SmackDown, most of the crowd seemed to be on Cena's side as opposed to RAW, when there have been tendencies to have the women and children cheering him, but males boong)

Was this mainly due to the brand switch from SmackDown to RAW, or would he have gotten mixed reactions had he stayed on SmackDown?
Nah..he came to Raw during the Draft special in 2004 for a match and he got a overwhelming positive reaction. It was him going over Angle too much that led to the mixed reactions and then he stopped rapping and became cookie cutter. He stopped being what those fans cheered for.
 
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