Sidney Akeem Talks Returning To NXT As SCRYPTS, Details Original Plans For Out The Mud Group

Sidney Akeem discusses his run as SCRYPTS.

In late 2022, Reggie transitioned to NXT and started using the ring name SCRYPTS. This came after a short run on the main roster that mianly featured him in either a manger role or in comedy matches.

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While speaking to Fightful for a new interview, the former SCRYPTS talked about going back to NXT and how it wasn't his idea.

"Of course. So going back to NXT wasn't my idea, but I was in this process. I knew the 24/7 title stuff was on its way out. I think we wrote it until the wheels for sure fell off. We wrote it for a long time and it was at his, I think one of the highest peaks when we're doing all of our stuff. I started to figure out what was, what was I gonna do next? And I presented myself, I wanna wrestle in a mask."

Akeem went on to talk about how he was originally set to do a story with Rey and Dominik Mysterio.

"I'm a writer as well and so I write all of my stories and I wrote the story of going under a mask, but it wasn't as a heel. It was gonna be something super cool; super, almost, basic. It was original talks with Rey Mysterio. I was gonna do something with him. Him and I discussed it and he was completely down. This is way before Judgment Day and all of these different things. But it was something to where, you know, I was gonna get attacked and him and Dom came to my aid, set up a six man and I'm nervous as heck. It's like my first match with Rey Mysterio, Dominik, all of these different things and he was gonna give me a mask to try to calm my nerves. We win or whatever, I'm gonna give it back. But he said, no, what? You keep it, you deserve it. You earned it or whatever and that was gonna be me in the mask. Flippy, fun, happy guy, whatever. That didn't work, that didn't happen. So I was told that I was gonna go back to NXT. All right, sweet. I still want to do the mask stuff and I had like a meeting with some people and just basically talked about who I was and my story and all of these different things, w What I wanted to do, very open, very great. first time dealing with NXT and I'm like, this is pretty amazing. But I said, ‘I want to do the mask,’ and they asked, ‘What do I like to do?’ I talk about poetry and then someone said, ‘I have this idea for Dark Poet. Would you be interested?’ I'm like, ‘Sure.’ I mean, I don't really turn down anything. I do my job. I am the performer and I know that there's a hierarchy to things or whatever. So, I do what I'm told, I'm gonna knock it out the park, just like I did the 24/7 stuff, the sommlier stuff or whatever."

Akeem went on to detail how he put the SCRYPTS character together and how Shawn Michaels believed that fans would find it hard to believe in him as a heel.

"I striped out every time and whatnot and I never felt comfortable because, one thing that Shawn told me after I told him my story, he heard my story for the first time, he was like, ‘Oh, shit. He didn't say, well shit, but he said, good luck with making these people try to hate you.’ For one, I have a very unique skill set and my story is incredible. It's one of the reasons they hired me, but we went away from all of that. I had to be this dark poet. So all of the poems and things I was writing and then not knowing when I was gonna debut, had a guy make my gear and he did a horrible job. My mask, horrible job. I mean, this was a first for me. I had suits, I have a tailor. So I get all my suits custom. I didn't have a gear guy. So I found a guy. He threw something together quickly. Before the match, earlier that day, it ripped. So I had to get it stitched. So my gear was bad, my mask was bad. And I'm just like, oh man, I feel so out of whack with this character and it was a huge fail."

Akeem then went on to talk about how his story with Axiom didn't work out the way that they wanted it to, which ultimately led to the creation of Out The Mud.

"Very much so. We started to pitch some things with Axiom and I, and it was great, very, very great. That story between us didn't develop quite like we wanted it to, ‘cause just time and getting rushed and whatnot. So that was rushed, but then the mask came off and I thought we were going to do something that we didn't do anything. I said, ‘Man, this sucks.’ So I did my part. I talked to my guys. I pitched the idea of doing something that was very personal to me. This is the first time that I was going to use my real story and instead of writing it up, I filmed it. I filmed it and I put like the Easter eggs in the back of the two guys that I wanted to use, which were Bronco and Lucien. We filmed this vignette that the public didn't see it, but I showed it to some creative people and they said, ‘I love this. It's exactly what we envisioned for you. It's like a Hurt Business, a Nation of Domination type of faction, and whatnot. After the pay-per-view, we're gonna move forward with this.’ What was that next week? They planted the Easter eggs on this faction or what not? I'm like, ‘Oh heck yeah, we're moving forward right where we wanna be.’ For the majority of that, and I'm writing all of these promos and filming these vignettes and sending it to them, sending it to them, and they were so on board with it. I don't know where along the line, where it went from what I originally wrote to how OTM was presented because it went from like a very strong faction to almost a knockoff Cryme Tyme, and I didn't write that, you know? That wasn't my vision for it, but that's how it turned out."

Akeem also went on to expand on the portrayal of Out The Mud and how he was free to decline certain things about the group.

"In my original vignette that I shot and recorded. It said, I told them, ‘I'm not SCRYPTS, I'm Reggie,’ and I was gonna transition, but they wanted to keep that SCRYPTS name, maybe it was something to where we created it, we wanna make it work or whatever. But again, I'm never a guy to say, ‘No,’ until they wanted us to do some things that I was like, ‘Yeah, we're not gonna do that.’ Mine's weren't so severe. I don't want to make it seem like it was like something crazy, but I just didn't want OTM to be portrayed in that light. Like I never set out to be, you know, a thug or an angry black man on camera. But OTM, we were presented as like so mean and angry, which yes, from our upbringings, but it wasn't like, ‘I'm a thug now or whatever.’ I tried my hardest to break that stigma, even when I joined the circus. I didn't wanna be that guy because I'm really from the streets. I really was in the game. I really sold drugs and been in prison and being shot at all these different things, watch people die, my uncle in my bedroom. I said, ‘I have nothing to be upset about, nothing to be angry about. It's a huge blessing that I was able to have 16 years in the circus and then make it to the WWE with almost zero training and whatnot.’ I have nothing to be upset about and I wanted to be happy. No, no, no. But this is the thing, again, I am a performer. So when it comes to wins and losses, you know, I don't care. I don't care at all. I'm just going to go out there and make the match the best that I can do. I will lose to anyone. That's never my problem, but don't ask me to drink malt liquor on screen and whatnot, things like that. The shooting dice was, you know, we did it, but it wasn't gonna be an ongoing thing, you know? I didn't wanna do that. They gave me a lot of freedom to say those things, so that's why I felt comfortable by declining certain things. We had a great relationship. Like, there's no bad blood or anything. I had a great time there. I didn't really see the writing on the wall, but it was some evidence to show like, ‘Maybe we're going to move on a bit.’"

Elsewhere in the interview, Akeem talked about Out The Mud's Snickers ad. Learn more by clicking here.

Also, check out Fightful's full interview with Akeem in the video linked at the top of this article.

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