On June 21, Nikki Cross debuted her new character Nikki ASH (Almost a Super Hero). Cross had been off television for months, before returning in May as part of the Rhea Ripley and Charlotte Flair feud, leading to the debut of her new character.
The character received mixed reviews from fans online, but Cross' husband Killian Dain explained that it was her idea.
Speaking to Ryan Satin on Out of Character, Nikki explained when she came up with the concept and te pitch she made to get it on television.
"It was the night after the Royal Rumble and it was like, 'Okay, this is the right time.' We had the Black Widow movie coming out. Scarlet Witch was so successful on Disney+ and it felt like the perfect time to think about (the character) and do it. I would pinpoint Royal Rumble and that was the natural start," she said.
When explaining her pitch process to WWE, Nikki said, "I asked an artist to do a cartoon drawing. When we started to explore (the character), it was going to be a super positive role model for children and the younger audience. I wanted to present the character as spunky, cute, and very energetic dynamite. We did a concept cartoon and then I looked into the research. What were the numbers at the box office for Wonder Woman? It was successful, but how much money did it make? How much money did Captain Marvel make? Looking at the success, especially with female-led superhero movies and television shows. The female-led franchises and movies is what I wanted to focus on and show that there has been a huge success and it's inspirational. I went to see Wonder Woman with my mom in Scotland and I was crying. I looked over at my mom and she had tears in her eyes. I have younger nephews and they are obsessed with superheroes. You see how much it can touch people's lives and at WWE, we also want to touch people's lives and connect with families and people with all ages. Superheroes and WWE, we want to unite people. For me, that's what I want to explore and make it relatable. How do we bring this to WWE in 2021? Those were the first few things. My thing was getting the image and the cartoon helped that and captured my energy."
Much like Wonder Woman and Captain Marvel, Nikki ASH stood tall at the end of the July 19 episode of WWE Raw, cashing in her Money in the Bank briefcase to win the Raw Women's Championship from Charlotte Flair.
Nikki is set to address the WWE Universe on Monday's WWE Raw.
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