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  #1  
Old 08-10-2015, 11:06 AM
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Default Who Were the Best Wrestlers at Playing Both Heel and Face?

Over the years I've seen more than a few threads pop up discussing the greatest heels/faces of all time but I don't think I've ever come across a thread asking who was best at playing both. There were some wrestlers throughout the years that you just couldn't help but to hate (kayfabe), for example; HHH, Piper, Flair, etc. However, there were also those wrestlers you couldn't help but root and cheer for like Daniel Bryan, Stone Cold, and Dusty Rhodes. And then there were those guys in the middle. I'm curious as to who, you personally, think was the best wrestler ever to illicit a desired reaction in both the heel and face role.

I've got a couple guys in mind but I'll just go with my top pick:

The Rock: As a heel with the NOD, I would argue that there was nobody with more heat than The Rock. The fans absolutely hated him and "Rocky Sucks" chants were a weekly occurrence. Eventually he began to tease some tension with the NOD, turned face, and the fans made him their "champion" just to be swerved a few months later, when Rock would align himself with The Corporation. At this point he was the top heel in the business and had proven that he could also get the fans on his side when he wanted to. And than of course, he finally began his real run as a face and arguably became the most popular wrestler, ever. You'd think at this point that The Rock would be unable to become a true heel again, but he proved everyone wrong with Hollywood Rock... maybe the greatest heel gimmick of all time.

So, who do you think was best at playing both heel and face throughout their career?
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  #2  
Old 08-10-2015, 11:56 AM
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Randy Savage.

In the early part of his career, the guy was so bad I didn't think there was any possible way he could turn face and have it be convincing, even though just about everyone who's ever performed in the ring has taken a turn at good guy and bad guy.

Savage radiated 'badness' from the glee he seemed to take in strangling Ricky Steamboat with the ring rope to the awful manner in which he treated my girlhood idol, Miss Elizabeth.

The interesting thing is that when he did go good, he really didn't act all that differently than before. He fought in essentially the same manner except that we now cheered him when he did the same stuff to bad guys that we hated him for doing to the heroes. That's effective characterization.

That whole bit with Elizabeth, Sherri and Ultimate Warrior at WM7 was likely my favorite WWE moment of all time.

Savage could do it all.......for good & for bad.
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Old 08-10-2015, 12:21 PM
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Totally agreed with Savage.
Would also rate Stone Cold Steve Austin at the top of my list, as his character was initially intended to be a heel. The incredible turn of events at WM 13 solidified Austin as a face, yet he still maintained the edge he had as a heel.
Also would give Eddie Guerrero's "Latino Heat" major props. He was a master at using heel tactics (while being 100% completely face) to score a cheap win over his opponents. The fact that he lied, cheated and stole wins from heels and playing it up for the crowds made him incredibly popular. He pretty much turned the formula upside down.
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Old 08-10-2015, 12:32 PM
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The first name that came up my mind was Chris Jericho. But one would say he's a better heel than a face it doesn't matter anyhow coz the fans love him when he runs as a face. I really enjoyed his recent work with Bray Wyatt as a face.

Next I would add CM Punk to this list. His character in WWE is some sort of unique that made the crowd to love him whether he's a face or a heel.

Cheers!!
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Old 08-10-2015, 12:51 PM
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I would have to select the late Rowdy Roddy Piper. When he was bad, he was utterly despised, going way back to the earliest days of Wrestlemania. But when he was the funny, smart assed Piper, especially later in his career, he typically had the crowd eating out of the palm of his hands. Piper was such an asshole when he was a heel, but would elicit a very favorable face reaction when he was playing the other side of the coin. All due respect to Chris Jericho, Shawn Michaels, the Rock, and a handful of others who were great at playing either side of the heel/face game, but Piper was in a class of his own in this regard.
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Old 08-10-2015, 01:15 PM
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Hogan and The Rock are the 2 best examples of guys who were on top of there games at the highest level as both. After them a guy like Jericho has to be mentioned. He is just as adept at playing a face as he is a heel and has done both at the highest levels.
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Old 08-10-2015, 02:04 PM
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The Rock, Hulk Hogan, Roddy Piper, Shawn Michaels, CM Punk and Bret Hart.

Rock was awesome as a heel and was so bad he became good. His run from late 1998 to 2001 was so brilliant and its a shame younger fans never saw how good that time was.

Hogan; number 1 face of all time. When he went bad - he changed wrestling forever. And he was very effective during the first 2 years of his heel run.

Roddy Piper - he was a legit bad ass bad guy. What I admired is he played a heel for years then when he turned face he stayed that way forever. Absolute beast.

Shawn Michaels baby face run in 1996 was when he was the main eventer every PPV. But his face run from 2002 to his end of career was brilliant. Yes I know he went heel in 2005 for 3 weeks or so for the Hogan match but he was predominantly a face for 99.99% of his last run. His mic work as a heel during that short time was brilliant too.
HBK was always exciting in the ring whatever role he played.

CM Punk- excellent as both face and heel. His pipe bomb moments all the way through to his bouts with Rock and Undertaker - excellent.

Bret Hart - he was the great hero - then he turned on the USA fans (or they turned on him depending on how you see it). What a babyface bret was - but then his 1997 turn was just a white hot 6 month period and one that laid the foundation for Stone Cold.
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  #8  
Old 08-10-2015, 02:10 PM
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the Undertaker is my pick.

Strong Heel as Ministry Taker and by an largr haz been a beloved Babyface character for the past decade or more and cant be said to have become stale whatsoever.
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Old 08-10-2015, 03:36 PM
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Rock, agreed. Savage, agreed. HBK, agreed. I also thought Bret was fantastic in his last run as a heel, and he was a great face as well. Stone Cold. Flair was a great well, he always got cheered as a heel, so he's kind of in another category, but he played both sides well. I liked Angle as a heel in WWE and as a bad-ass face in TNA.





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Old 08-10-2015, 03:58 PM
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My 2 picks for the greatest heels would have to be JBL - 2004 and Jericho - 2008.

I hated JBL back in 2004, especially when he beat Eddie. he didn't care about being a 'cool heel' he was an old fashion heel who would do anything to be hated by the fans. there was nothing cool about him. Still to this day, his 2004 heel run was one of the greatest heel runs I've ever seen.
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