ThoughtWorthy IV ~ Cody Rhodes/Stardust {WWE}

Discussion in 'The Wrestling Archives' started by ShinChan, Apr 15, 2017.

  1. ShinChan

    ShinChan Gone. For. Good.

    Sep 9, 2015
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    Cody Rhodes/Stardust {WWE}

    Let's get through his accomplishments first:

    • WWE Tag Team Championship ×3
    • World Tag Team Championship ×3
    • WWE InterContinental Championship ×2

    So, as his accomplishments suggest, he had remained in the midcard position for almost full stint in WWE. More successful as a tag team wrestler winning tag team titles with the likes of Goldust, Ted DiBiase, Hardcore Holly and Drew McIntyre.

    My favorite moments of his stint in WWE include him teaming up with his brother Goldust against The Authority and The Shield. Also, the whole paperback angle. The match against Stephen Amell as Stardust is one of my favorite Celebrity matches ever. Rhodes Scholars was good as well and so was the feud with Damien Sandow over the Money In The Bank briefcase.

    I don't remember how he was on the mic. Heck, I don't even remember any promos from him. About in-ring work, he wasn't bad at all. But he wasn't great either.

    What I don't get about Stardust is why WWE didn't accept his request to end Stardust gimmick which ultimately led him to ask for his release. I guess that only Vince knows why. Regardless, it was pretty par stint for him as he was lurking in the midcard for the most time.

    Question: Your thoughts about Cody Rhodes' stint in WWE?
  2. The Perfect Max

    The Perfect Max I Am Jericho

    Feb 17, 2011
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    Cody Rhodes took a variety of gimmicks and made them work the best he could, but I think that his biggest problem was nothing was made of whatever success those gimmicks were. Dashing Cody Rhodes was a massively positive step forward after Legacy, but that was only ever going to be a midcard gimmick. The evolution into the disfigured character was my favourite era of Cody Rhodes. I thought it was brilliant and the benefit of SmackDown at the time meant that he COULD have been a World Champion, but I understand why he wasn't.

    And that's really where it starts to get shaky. The Intercontinental Champiomship run ended and there was a bit of a limbo period where the Drew McIntyre stuff didn't really go anywhere, and unfortunately Rhodes Scholars didn't either. I genuinely thought he and Damien Sandow could have been on to something, but it wasn't to be. They could have had a much better blow off feud post team as well in my opinion, but that was contingent on the team's success I guess.

    I also think that WWE mishandled the Cody and Goldust team as well. The team worked, and the whole angle with The Shield was awesome, but it was after that. When they transitioned into Stardust (which I did enjoy), there was no payoff for it. Just a throw away match at Fastlane and that was it for Stardust. The Stephen Amell stuff is pretty forgettable considering how irrelevant Stardust had become over time. Just my opinion though, I understand why the match was enjoyable but meh on the character. And I think that was mainly because it seemed as if WWE wasn't interested in doing anything with Stardust which is a shame.

    I enjoyed Cody Rhodes for the majority of the time. When I didn't, I wouldn't say it was his fault. I wish he was utilised better at times because I was one who thought he had a lot more to offer than what we got in the end. I wouldn't be surprised if he returned one day. He's still quite young. But we shall see.
  3. Y 2 Jake

    Y 2 Jake Slightly Autistic

    Dec 31, 1969
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    Cody faced Randy Orton, Rey Mysterio and Big Show at Wrestlemania in an era when mid card nobodies were thrown into multi person ladder matches. He was given a shot and never caught on. He was just not worth the investment. Portraying Stardust on Main Event was his level.
  4. Jack-Hammer

    Staff Member Moderator

    Mar 26, 2009
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    For the most part, I always saw Cody Rhodes as a strong tag team and mid-card player and that's where he was for most of his career. The peak of Cody's time in WWE was during his 1st run as Intercontinental Champion and he'll be most remembered for being the guy who brought back the classic title design used from the mid 80s up through the peak years of the Attitude Era.

    Of course, every dirt sheet writer proclaimed that Cody was used badly, deserved better, etc., you know, the same song & dance that they play regarding about three quarters of released WWE stars. However, I will say that his time as Stardust was abysmal after he stopped teaming with Goldust and he certainly could've been used better there. All in all, if he wanted more then I can't blame him for requesting his release. Since his release, he's been used in an overall better way than in the final months of his Stardust persona, he's still been used as a mid-card guy who loses half the time. Given that he attacked Christopher Daniels from behind at ROH's last ppv, it suggests he might be challenging for the ROH World Championship.

    When it's all said & done, I think Cody's ultimate goal is to build up his reputation over the next few years in company's like ROH, TNA and New Japan before returning to WWE in the hopes of being a more significant star. Cody turns 32 at the end of June, so he's still a very young man who doesn't have a history of injuries.
  5. Vanilla Midget

    Vanilla Midget Registered Suplex Offender

    Apr 9, 2014
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    They took away the one character that worked for Cody Rhodes. The Undashing gimmick has so much life left in it. Even if they wanted to take off the mask, he could have maintained the things that were making it work (the paper bags, the dark promos, the music).

    It's almost like they took everything that was working away from him to settle Cody back where they saw him - the midcard.

    Cody's character could have worked if they saw success. He seemed ready for a massive face push after Sandow screwed him at MITB. He beat Sandow at SummerSlam, then vanished for Night of Champions, then got involved with the Authority storyline. He was kayfabe fired, then a very game Goldust returned to help him.

    Then he got stuck in the tag team with Goldust, became Stardust, was on main event and superstars for a year then quit.

    Would Stardust have not been better has Cody been pushed? What if they used him on TV and pushed him as US champion (the stars?). They let him drown in the mid card. Stardust was a derivative of Goldust that was afforded no opportunities. They were a great tag team, they were ok heels (too silly) then they split up and did squat.

    There's plenty of time for Rhodes to get back to WWE. We've seen Styles, Roode, and Young debut at 39. Joe and Nakamura are north of 35. Cody is only 32, so he could return in another 3 to 5 years and still have the best chapter of his career.

    If they did bring him back, it would have to be as close to the Undashing character as possible. That got the best reaction and pulled the best out of Rhodes.
  6. ComeOnVince

    ComeOnVince Pre-Show Stalwart

    Jul 26, 2013
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    Here's the thing about Cody, to me: He was one of those guys who got a decent response. Not great, not huge. Decent. People knew who Cody was and he generated some interest in his gimmicks and matches. He was a VERY solid mid-card worker who deserved some push, and honestly, made the most of the few he did get. Cody was never going to be a world champion or a top draw or a top guy or any of those things. Very solid IC/US title picture guy.

    He worked well as a face/heel/Stardust, and I always found Cody's work excellent and entertaining.

    Here's where WWE missed the boat on Cody...

    ... a couple of years ago when Cody and Dustin/Goldust were wrestling together, they missed a GOLDEN (pun intended) opportunity to cap that whole thing off with a REALLY ENTERTAINING bout at Wrestlemania between the Rhodes brothers. I think that match would have been a great, great opening or middle-of-the-card bout that really would have been quality. But, just like Miz/Sandow, WWE pooh-poohed the whole thing. I think it would have been great, and I think great mid-card feuds like Cody/Goldust and Miz/Sandow is exactly what WWE is missing right now. Solid, well-written, well-worked feuds that are not at the top of the card and aren't meant to be. WWE really needs to shore up the middle of the lineup, and feuds like those two (where WWE failed) could have been great and ended much better.
  7. Dagger Dias

    Dagger Dias Natural 20
    Staff Member Super Moderator

    Sep 22, 2008
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    Cody had a decent run in the WWE and got about as far as he was going to. He did really well in tag team action winning the belts multiple times with guys like Hardcore Holly, Ted Dibiase, Goldust, and Drew McIntyre. I was genuinely surprised he didn't win them yet another time with Sandow as Rhodes Scholars during the time they were together. I enjoyed the vast majority of his time in the WWE. From the very beginning with being mentored by Hardcore Holly only to turn on him by forming Team Priceless with Dibiase, I thought great things were in store for both Cody and Ted when they got together in 2008. Hard to believe that was so long ago. Anyway, they split after the Legacy storyline and then we got Dashing Cody and Disfigured Cody. That was an awesome character, though he would never have made it past the midcard with either version of that gimmick.

    And here comes the bad part. Then he went from the strange Disfigured gimmick to.... plain boring Cody. I hated this time of his career other than the Rhodes Scholars team and the feud with Sandow that followed. Other than that, it really wasn't until he became Stardust that I became interested again. I may be in the minority but I loved the Stardust character. It stood out and was awesome. The comic themed feud Stardust and Neville had might be Cody's best feud in his entire WWE career. Stardust could have made it further up the card, possibly even to a World Championship. Who knows. Dashing/Disfigured Cody and Stardust will be missed, but plain boring Cody won't. He had a good run and might have thrived on Smackdown as Stardust now that the Brand Split is back, but I guess we will never know.
  8. Kodo Sawaki

    Kodo Sawaki Championship Contender

    Aug 30, 2012
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    He was red hot when he wear that mask and hand out paper bags. He even got no small push where he won Intercontinental Championship and run pretty good time with it. Then he lost to Big Show. Then he won against Big Show and then he lost against Christian, and then Sin Cara and all others. And that was kinda that from his career, rest is not so much thought worthy. Always thought that WWE would give him some bigger push seeing that he is OK wrestler and is Dusty son, but seems that they didnt believe in him that much to push him more. If he makes something more in indy circuit no doubt he will be back. Though dont think he would get far either way. Midcard talent by every standard.
  9. MWRedskins

    MWRedskins Mid-Card Championship Winner

    Feb 21, 2010
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    When he first came on the scene, i thought of Cody Rhodes as nothing more than a midcard wrestler at best.....he can rule Tag Teams and win the IC and US title. his early years were bland...then he teamed with Ted Dibiase Jr. and they were fine in the ring, but werent booked well.

    then after the end of Legacy and Dibiase, he went on his own and got the gimmick of Dashing Cody Rhodes. that was a step up for him and that was fun, but midcard at best....then he "lost" his good looks and wore a nose protection mask and that gimmick was also good, but more for midcarders......then when he finally broke off from the disfigured story, i thought he had main event potential.

    his best story was when he was battling the Authority and i thought if WWE were smart, they'd run with that and have Cody win a major singles title, maybe even the World title (at that time the titles werent unified). however, they sent him in a tag team with his brother and that was really good to watch and made his brother into a more major player. sometime after their tag title run ended, he switched to Stardust and that would've been good for the short term, but it lasted too long and then he finally left.

    Basically, i feel that if booked well, Cody Rhodes is a main event guy because in the ring he's great and while he's not Jericho on the mic, he can hold his own and can be good on the mic and work any gimmick short term (even if it's stupid). his best gimmick is that of a son who thinks he's better than his dad and the rest of the world.
  10. THTRobtaylor

    THTRobtaylor Once & Future Wrestlezone Columnist

    Jun 2, 2006
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    Cody felt he was main event level... Vince and Trips felt difference but they offered him the best thing they could (in their minds) a gimmick that could have lasted for as long as his brother's did.

    Cody embodies the issue many modern talents have... they believe the main event and titles are where they need to be, when the truth is a LONG mid card career is arguably more lucrative when the dust settles.

    As Goldust, Dustin has been on payroll probably earning 3-4 hundred grand a year for the better part of two decades... He's been off the roster a total of about 3 years since 1995. All told that's 20 years of good WWE money for a gimmick he probably didn't "love" but in truth is far better than anything he'd have done without it.

    He never got a World title though... had he done so in 95/96 it would have been short and negatively impacted his career... look at guys like Slaughter, Yoko and even Shawn on his first run... the gravy train can run out very quick in the main event.

    Cody basically got offered a "job for life" as Stardust... I am sure the plan was (with the odd return for Cody as himself here and there) for Stardust to be around as long if not longer than Goldust as his "replacement"... Cody would have been worth a small amount more, perhaps half a mil a year but would have made money on the merch of that character, which was pretty kid friendly all told.

    He balked... he wanted to be himself and to be a main eventer... he turned down that long term security because he believed he was more in the business. Dream may have talked him up our into leaving, but I think Dustin would have been more "stick with it", having lived that life I am sure he has some regrets... but neither Cody nor Dustin are their father or are ever
    going to be champions like he was. Once Dustin accepted Goldust, he quickly settled and improves to this day... Cody chose not to do that and more power to him, but ultimately it's a bad call.

    The only way I can see Cody's point is that Goldust was Dustin's thing... and he wants to still find his own... he had it with Undashing, or did he... it was basically T.A.F.K.A Goldust with a mask instead of green Madonna nipples and a ball-gag. A once "fabulous" or dashing character who saw themselves as ugly...

    It's a shame more guys can't accept being the long term mid guy... but I guess some of what they say is true... if you don't believe you should be world champ, you shouldn't be there over someone who does...
    Dagger Dias likes this.
  11. enviousdominous

    enviousdominous Behold my diction

    Jun 28, 2011
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    I think the biggest mistake that the WWE ever did with Cody was that they expected him to get over on his own merits. I'm assuming a great deal with that last statement, but that's where my head is.

    Cody was weird in a lot of ways that were apparently never addressed. He had knobby knees, he was pretty damn small compared to everyone else and his finishing move looked fucking stupid. We fans were apparently supposed to ignore all of that and accept that Cody legitimately got a clean win over Ezekiel Jackson for the IC Championship. What I saw was Zeke having his career destroyed as he laid down for that stupid looking rebound foot to the face move, and I saw the IC Championship devalued as Cody was just a guy wandering around with a belt that nobody else wanted.

    From what I can tell, the WWE thought "He's Cody Rhodes, that alone will sell tickets".

    The only time I had a mild spark of interest in the vanilla Cody character was when he started cutting promos on the McMahon's being obsessed with keeping the Rhodes family down. For whatever reason, that wasn't allowed to go anywhere.

    Promos and matches that I've seen of Cody in Japan and in the indies seem just as bland as his WWE work. Personally, I don't give a fuck about the Bullet Club. I think that they're such a cheap imitation of the nWo meets DX that, when they themselves exploit the similarities, it's a boring-ass failed attempt at meta-humor. I don't consider membership in the Bullet Club to be any reason to start liking someone, and I think that Cody's promos for the Bullet Club are fucking stupid.

    The Stardust thing was too little too late. Nothing he did at a certain point of being associated with stomach pain inducing boredom could get me to become excited for his performances.

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