As her man, the now former WWE United States champion Rusev, struggles in combat against John Cena, Lana is reportedly set to receive a big push from the company, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (via LordsofPain).
Lana, whose real name is Catherine Joy Perry is currently the on-screen manager for the former “Bulgarian Brute” Rusev. The two portrayed Russians are currently teasing tension between themselves as the WWE Universe is responding to Lana in a positive manner.
At this past week’s pay-per-view Extreme Rules, the loud chants from the crowd towards Lana provided a distraction, causing Rusev to lose his match. The next night on RAW, the crowd greeted the “Ravishing Russian” with a tremendous reception, causing Rusev to walk onto the stage and break up the chants.
These are all harbingers of a planned face turn for Lana.
According to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter’s report, WWE Chairman Vince McMahon is reportedly looking to make Lana the new female face of the company. Once she completes her turn to become a crowd favorite, McMahon is looking to accentuate the fact that Lana is actually an American and not the Russian that she is portrayed to be on television.
Additionally, the plan is for Lana to keep her current name but there have been discussions of her using a shortened version of her real name and perform as “CJ.” The reason for that is McMahon wanting people to associate the name “CJ” as an attractive blonde through Pamela Anderson’s role in the now-defunct series Baywatch, where she started as C.J. Parker.
It would be an apropos direction since the company recently had Lana star in their latest WWE Studios movie Interrogation alongside WWE Hall of Famer Edge.
However, one has to question McMahon’s thinking, since Baywatch concluded in 1999, meaning that the show hasn’t been broadcast in almost two decades. With the WWE’s current direction of appealing to a younger generation, it’s questionable for the Chairman of the company to create a character based of a TV series they’ve likely never heard of or seen.
Also, many fans are comparing this situation to the early 1990s with former WWE superstars Sable and Marc Mero. Much like Rusev and Lana, the two were both on-screen performers and a real-life couple off-screen. However, the blonde and attractive Sable received the audience’s admiration, and Mero went on to fade into obscurity.
There stands a strong possibility that in the event of a split, Rusev could end up going down the Mero path and steer off his prior path of being a threat. However, the company obviously has a lot invested in Lana to go along with major plans for her future.
[Image via WWE]