Professional wrestling is an art form that is heavily reliant on emotion and connecting with an audience. In recent history, there is perhaps no better example of this than the segment on the February 5 episode of AEW Dynamite on TNT where Maxwell Jacob Friedman gives Cody Rhodes ten lashes as part have a larger group of stipulations that will enable Cody to get his hands on MJF at AEW Revolution on February 29 in Chicago, Illinois.
Speaking to The Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling, Cody's older brother, Dustin Rhodes spoke openly about the segment that drew genuine emotion from wrestling fans across social media. Dustin would say that he is so proud of his brother and he feels that Cody is taking the world by storm. However, Dustin would say that if he, as a character was forced to be involved physically, then the segment would have been that much more compelling.
Credit to the TMPT Empire for the proceeding quotes.
“We were discussing it and discussing all the people that were going to be involved and it was a matter of Cody in that ring and us doing the little promos like Taz had one and I had one and getting these people invested in a ten lashes on television across my brothers back and they got invested. Cody sold it so well and his acting was so good and the way he was taking them and Arn comes out, his big brother comes out and we are all rallying behind him and I wanted to take the lashes for him,” Dustin recalled. “I think the only thing that might have been a little bit better is if MJF told me to give him the last five lashes, but this was after I was thinking of all these different scenarios. The people were invested in it much like they were invested in our Double or Nothing match of the year moment. They were invested and they were standing, and you get some audience shots of them saying, 'oh my God' and people are just really upset about it. It is uncomfortable. Whippings are always uncomfortable.
“It was really cool being out there and looking in my brother's eyes and us bringing the people along for this ride with us and Cody did a tremendous job. He is doing so good with everything he touches right now. He really has come into his own. He's got his own pair of boots and he's taking the world by storm and I'm very proud of him, I’m glad to be here, it's an honor, it's still fun, I'm still passionate, I help out the kids and I have training sessions with the ladies every single Wednesday before everybody gets there and I teach these kids how to do promos and teach promo classes. I am right there when they need something and when they have a hard time with a promo and I'll give them some advice on how to say this or how to say that and you can see it in them because they want to learn so much and are so passionate about it and they take what I say and they make it their own and you start to see the character come out of them. You can see it on their face that they are excited and they get to say something that was good and instead of the first take that was maybe not so good and that is the best feeling in the world for me is that I can help these kids get to that next level and that is what I love doing.”
Dustin, an AEW competitor in his own right, will go one-on-one with Jake Hager at AEW Revolution on 2/29.