Eric Young: Funny Business... or All Business?
by, 02-18-2012 at 02:10 AM (2569 Views)
Eric Young has been an interesting character to me, in both positive and negative ways. The first thing anyone will notice about EY is this: the man (his character, at least) is a bit... unusual, let's say. The first time I saw him was when I began watching TNA, which was when he was running around with Orlando Jones. Since then, I have watched him work and progress, and my thoughts are a bit mixed on him.
The first thing that comes to my mind is: he is TNA's Santino Marella. Just with a little less rhyme and much less reason. He comes across to me as somewhat out of touch with reality (he believed that he had to defend his TV title against actual TV stars...) and quite clueless. In some ways, it works for him. I can see where opponents would look at him and either underestimate him because they think he's mentally unarmed, or be totally confused and nervous because they don't know what to make of him. The hillbilly beard, the almost vacant look he always seems to have, all of these traits point to him as almost being Impact's village idiot. But his in-ring skills suggest otherwise. He shows flashes of brilliance when doing his thing, so I think that he is either (a) playing dumb or (b) he's socially inept, but technically dangerous.
At times, he is very amusing, but I worry that he is becoming underrated by fans and viewers. Him pairing up with ODB kinda lost a few cool points with me.
What I'd like to see (and this is my humble opinion, mind you) is one of two things happening: he either totally loses his mind, or shocks everyone and comes out as a frighteningly intelligent and calculating person. I could see either storyline beginning with something like him suffering head trauma and going into a coma or something similar, which would take him off the radar for a few weeks to make people wonder "What's going on with EY? When is he coming back? IS he coming back?" Then he reappears in dramatic fashion. For the first scenario, maybe he escapes from the hospital he was in (against the hospitals orders) and crashes the episode of Impact acting totally delirious, maybe even conversing with an invisible friend or some other off-the-wall thing he could do. His take on reality becomes outrageously skewed, and at random times he totally loses his grip on it. This, I think, would scare his enemies to death: going toe-to-toe with a raving lunatic? Not a fun scenario at all. Have him doing way out things, like hiding under the ring to ambush other wrestlers mid-match or doing commentary with Tenay and Taz (without their permission) and talking to his invisible friend while standing on the announce table.
For scenario number two, the blow to his head actually makes all of the jumbled pieces of his mind fall into place. He feels awake for the first time in years, maybe even describing his previous condition as some sort of mental issue he's dealt with over the years but is now remedied. And now that he's come to his senses, it's time to do something very important: change things in TNA so that not only does "wrestling matter," but "Eric Young matters." No more unassuming half-wit amusing the crowd with cartwheels and improv comedy... Playtime is over. Cue the heel turn. Show EY as a devastatingly cunning and smart man with lethal in-ring techniques, a man who can see into his opponent and know how to own them from the get-go. A man who is willing to cripple and maim to meet his goals and to make sure he is never a joke again. Perhaps he could establish a stable of other like-minded people who were jokes (Robbie E, anyone?) but are now ready to do to TNA what Nexus did to WWE. Have them wreak havoc, but subtly doing EY's bidding... until he turns on them and scatters them to the wind. He eventually captures the big title and has a suitable reign until - ironically - another blow to the head sends him back to normal and he loses the title, going back to the odd little hillbilly again.
Eric is another wrestler that I like and have high hopes for, but would like to see pushed farther. Even if he does not pick up championship gold, I see an engaging performer and a savvy technician. Again, just my thoughts. What are yours?