Sami Zayn is cinema.
Over the course of the Bloodline storyline, many fans have compared the twists and turns and depth to cinema, rather than a typical wrestling storyline. Roman Reigns has had a complex relationship with Jimmy Uso and Jey Uso with Solo Sikoa adding a new family dynamic and Paul Heyman either keeping the peace or stirring the pot.
Sami Zayn entered the story after WrestleMania 38 and took things to a different level as he was an outsider being brought in to a family.
Speaking on WWE After The Bell, Zayn was asked about the Bloodline being "cinema" and the story being one of the best in wrestling history.
"Even if I were to say something like that, it could come off arrogant or biased, but I have every metric available to us backing up that sentiment. Numbers ranging from social media engagement, viewership, live attendance, merchandise, and just in general. The amount I've been bombarded on the streets, before the storyline and after the storyline, the amount of people who told me, 'I kind of fell out of love with the product for a while, I stopped watching, this storyline brought me back in.' That's one of the most rewarding things you could possibly hear from a fan. I do think we stumbled upon something kind of magical, lightning in a bottle, the fact that we were able to draw it out for over a year, and it's still going on, it's next evolution, it's me speculating, but the only thing I can liken it to is my story with Kevin, which is a 20-year story," said Sami.
He continued, reflecting on his story with Owens, which began decades ago on the independent scene.
"Year one of me and Kevin, after we started taking our match all over the country, all over the independent circuit, we were like, 'People are going to get fed up with this. When are they going to get fed up with this?' We've had to work so hard to where, not only do they never get fed up with it, they always wanted to see what is next. I used to think it was nothing, I think it was just this weird, magical chemistry that we had that kept people engaged, but it took a lot of hard work when I stopped and thought about it, which almost borders on neurosis from people watching from the sidelines. You'd see us at work, and you'd see us bicker over trying to make these things as good as possible, 'it's a match, a storyline,' and I can't tell you how many times, dating back 15 years, people would go, 'Don't you guys have this figured out by now?' It took me 10 or 15 years for me to realize, 'No, that's why it keeps working, because we don't have it figured out,' we never assume it's figured out, we always have to reinvent and top it to make it fresh, and how do we do that? Putting that level of energy into it is what kept it that way. If we just said, 'You want to do what we did in Pittsburgh? Cool.' They already saw it in Pittsburgh, and you're tired of it by the time you see it three times. It was constantly about keeping it innovative and fresh. We got 20 years out of that and counting," he said.
Sami then circled back to the Bloodline and how they compare to himself and Kevin.
"In some ways, I think the evolution of the story, and this is me speculating, while I think the Sami and Kevin side has kind of put a bow on it, we got the revenge on Roman, and now we've seen the Bloodline crumble, or at least appear to splinter, I do think it could be one of those things that is so magical, like Kevin and Sami, the key to it could be going apart, and coming back together, going apart, coming back together, to where it could actually be, if you do it successfully, could be woven in a way for another three, four years, but you do it in a way that is conscientious to where you're not burning fans out on it, where they're actually excited to see the next stage of it," he said.
Corey Graves compared the relationship of Sami and Kevin to the relationship of Kane and The Undertaker, which was a story that lasted decades as the two brothers fought to the death and teamed up multiple times.
"The thing that made this different from Kane and Undertaker is, imagine a Kane and Undertaker level depth of relationship with the longevity, coupled with a story as compelling on a weekly basis as perhaps Austin and McMahon. In some ways, they are kind of apples and oranges, but we did it in a very different way. I don't want to say cinematic, but we did have that mindset. Everybody involved had a cinematic approach to it versus a 'rasslin' approach to it. We tried to get out of the box and were thinking more in terms of Breaking Bad and The Wire, and these complex characters interacting versus trying to mirror what the NWO did or what Austin and McMahon did. There is so much to it," said Sami.
He concluded by saying, "I dare say, when [wrestling is] done at it's absolute best, nothing touches it, including great cinema, great television, great theater, great musical performance. It's all of those things rolled into one."
Zayn previously compared The Bloodline to The Sopranos.
Zayn & Owens defeated Reigns & Sikoa at WWE Night of Champions to retain their Undisputed WWE Tag Team Championships. During the match, Jimmy Uso superkicked Reigns twice, further fracturing The Bloodline.
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