by Joe Thunder - August 23, 2012
Anyone else remember the weird promos with the little boy and the little girl and all the odds clues as to what it might mean? Anyone remember reading the dirt sheets and the debates on whether it was Chris Jericho or the Undertaker who was behind said promos? Jericho made a name for himself on debuts and returns alone in WWE, and this latest run of his has been nothing short of spectacular.
Y2J returned to WWE after not being seen for sixteen months in January of this year. He quickly showed his skills of portraying the evil villain by trolling on the WWE Universe. A lot of us expected huge accomplishments for Y2J. Jericho went into the Rumble as a top contender and ended up being eliminated by Sheamus in one of the most epic finishes in the history of the Rumble match. He had declared that it would be the end of the world as we knew it and that he would win the Rumble. After failing to do so, Jericho still set his sights on the top dog.
Jericho would attack CM Punk the night after the Rumble and then enter the Elimination Chamber and be eliminated from the match prematurely after a staged fall that resulted in Jericho being knocked unconscious. He would go on to win a ten man battle royal the next night and challenge Punk for the WWE Title at WrestleMania 28.
Punk and Jericho put on the best WRESTLING match of the night at WrestleMania 28, and Jericho would fail to capture the WWE Title when he tapped out to the anaconda vice. The match was somewhat unfortunately overshadowed by the end of an era match along with the Rock/Cena main event. What’s more unfortunate is that the crowd was so emotinally drained after watching Triple H/Taker that people couldn’t fully appreciate the quality wrestling that Punk and Y2J delivered. Jericho would go on to continue taunting Punk about his family member’s demons and it would culminate in a street fight at Extreme Rules.
Just like WrestleMania, Punk and Jericho again put on the BEST match of the night at Extreme Rules. Punk was able to once again best Y2J and retain his championship. After helping legitimize CM Punk’s reign as WWE Champion, Jericho moved into the World Title scene and participated in a fatal four way with Sheamus, Randy Orton, and Alberto Del Rio. Jericho would actually be the one to lose the match when he was pinned by Sheamus. The fatal four way was solid and the added star power of Jericho brought the match to a higher level.
Jericho would be “suspended” for 30 days in late May after kicking the Brazilian flag at a live event in South America. Whether or not the suspension was kayfabe is still a question that hasn’t been answered. Y2J would return and set his sights on winning the Raw Money in the Bank. Y2J lost the MITB ladder match when Cena was victorious.
Jericho would turn face for the last month when he nailed Dolph Ziggler with a codebreaker in the middle of the ring after being taunted by the Showoff about not being able to win the big one. Jericho and Ziggler would taunt and attack one another leading up to their big match at Summerslam. Y2J and Ziggler stole the show as the opening act of Summerslam. Jericho was able to pick up the win on Ziggler in what was easily the match of the night. Jericho and Ziggler would face off on Raw in a rematch the next night where if Dolph lost, Jericho would win Dolph’s MITB Contract for a shot at the World Title. If Jericho lost, he would be fired. For the second night in a row, Jericho and Ziggler put on an exciting encounter that stole the show. Unfortunately for Jericho, Ziggler was able to pick up the win and end his run. Jericho would attack Ziggler after the match before waving his goodbyes for now to the WWE Universe.
Jericho feuded with the top talent of WWE during this eight month run and made a lot of people look really good. He brought the best out of talent and put on the best matches in 2012 in WWE. Without winning ANY championship and only coming out victorious in one out of seven pay per view matches, Y2J shined one the same(and arguably higher) level as CM Punk and Daniel Bryan. Every time Jericho tangled with Sheamus, the two had outstanding chemistry with one another and put on a great show. The only thing that could’ve made this run any sweeter would’ve been a one on one match with Daniel Bryan. With or without it though, Jericho was stellar.
Jericho’s portrayal as a heel this time around was some of his best work ever. He truly the best form of villain more than any other competitor so far in 2012. His work as a face with Dolph Ziggler was just as good and showed the comical side of Y2J that we had yet to witness. Jericho’s versatility has allowed him to work with all competitors with either gimmick of heel or face and still make for the best rivalries possible. It’s a rare thing that can only be found among top tier talent(Punk, Taker, HBK, DBry, Austin, Rock, ect).
A guy like Chris Jericho CAN come and go as he pleases, because he’s put in 20+ years and worked his tail off for millions of fans. His accomplishments, talent, and famous rivalries and moments have put him in a class as one of the greatest ever, and what he brought to WWE during this eight month run is something a true wrestling fan will never forget. Thank you, Y2J.
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