Ric Flair began making more frequent appearances in the WWE once his daughter, Charlotte, captured the Divas Championship last September. Pretty soon he was a regular performer again, appearing weekly, and aiding in Charlotte’s transition to becoming a heel champion in January. Flair helped guide her through a WrestleMania victory over Sasha Banks and Becky Lynch after the company decided to decommission the Divas Championship in favor of the WWE Women’s Championship.
The pair drummed up a bit of controversy along with Paige back in November when the women agreed to shoot an angle referencing Ric Flair’s deceased son Reid, Charlotte’s brother. The angle got so much heat that the WWE was forced to issue a statement in an attempt to defuse the backlash.
“Subject matter this personal is only approved as a result of the strong advocacy of the talent themselves. Notwithstanding that, WWE is ultimately responsible for what airs in its programming.”
While Charlotte agreed to run with the storyline in an attempt to stir the pot and attract more focus to the women’s division, Ric Flair said afterwards that he had no idea it was going to happen. And although many argued that it was in poor taste, Flair conceded that it got people talking, which means it was effective. Charlotte and the rest of the women’s division have stayed relatively drama-free since then. Until this past Monday, that is.
One night after successfully defending her Women’s Championship against Natalya, Charlotte went on to kick Ric Flair out of “her” ring, dissolving their on-screen relationship. Now Dana Brooke, who Flair referred to as Charlotte’s Arn Anderson, will accompany the champ to the ring and not her two-time Hall of Fame father. This angle sparked controversy of a different kind, causing WWE fans from India to bombard the company’s Facebook page demanding they suspend Charlotte. Once again, the storyline did the trick, no matter how backwards the reaction turned out to be.
After RAW’s commercial break, we saw Ric Flair walking the hallways of the arena with WWE superstars looking on sympathetically. He shared a moment with the real Arn Anderson before leaving the building as cameras lingered on the exit sign a little longer than normal. This forced many to speculate that Flair was finished with the company, as that long walk has led to many departures in the past. Plus, this was clearly an effort to generate heat on Charlotte and get her out of her father’s shadow.
The latter worked, but as Daily Wrestling News reports, Ric Flair is still under contract with WWE, and there are no plans to terminate his deal at this time. There is a storyline in play here that will eventually lead to the return of The Nature Boy, but that comeback has yet to be determined or at least made public. Flair has no legitimate heat on him as it pertains to his performance on camera or the incident earlier this month at Logan Airport in Boston.
No word on what capacity Flair would return in or whether he would be in the corner of another female superstar to challenge Charlotte. Perhaps it’s a coincidence or perhaps not, but Flair’s storyline departure comes at a time when new details have emerged over a new ESPN 30 For 30 documentary about Flair, aptly titled Nature Boy. The director of the film, Rory Karpf, had this to say recently, as reported on by the Inquisitr on Monday.
“In the wrestling world, the viewer isn’t sure what’s real or what isn’t, but ‘Nature Boy’–Ric Flair wasn’t just a character. He was real. The wrestler he portrayed in the ring was also the man he was outside the ring. I found that to be fascinating. He’s led a crazy life that’s a natural for a 30 for 30. Plus I just love pro wrestling.”
[Image via WWE]