The WWE Universe has been teased by the return of Emma for months, portraying a new character named Emmalina. Vignettes promoting the makeover from Emma to Emmalina began airing in October with a tagline that reads “Premiering Soon,” but just how soon has continued to be a mystery.
Emmalina’s debut was originally scheduled for December 12, with a December 5 vignette promoting as much. But when the December 12 episode of Monday Night RAW rolled around, another video saying that she’d be “Premiering Soon” was displayed instead. And in the weeks since, there has yet to be a clear indication of when she’ll actually appear on television. Soon perhaps, but not soon enough.
There are several hints as to why WWE officials are delaying Emmalina’s emergence, with one coming across as quite juvenile. On the most recent episode of Wrestling Observer Radio, Dave Meltzer suggested that the delay has become one giant rib, either on the fans, Emmalina herself, or both. It’s started to resemble the repackaging of Brodus Clay when John Laurinaitis teased him for weeks, only for Clay to return with a dancing gimmick instead of the monster most had imagined.
Ringside News is also reporting that WWE officials have held off on bringing out Emmalina because they have scrapped two creative angles in what would have become her first feuds back. It makes sense that they held off on the original December 12 debut, seeing how they wanted to wrap everything up at Roadblock before bringing her into the fold. But they probably should have held off on the vignette if that was the case.
At first, the company wanted Emmalina to confront Sasha Banks upon her debut as a way to transition Sasha away from Charlotte and the RAW Women’s Championship. However, it was later decided to give that spot to Nia Jax, who you saw attack Sasha this past week after The Boss tried to call out Charlotte to congratulate her. However, it still appears that a program between Nia and Sasha will be short-term, lasting no longer than the Royal Rumble.
After those plans were nixed, it was then pitched to re-pair Emmalina with Dana Brooke to resume that angle. The two teamed together in NXT and were achieving some level of success together on the main roster before Emma was injured in May. She actually got hurt during a house show tag match with Dana against Sasha and Becky Lynch. In either plan, Emmalina would have portrayed a heel, but both have been scrapped as of now.
Putting Emmalina back with Dana would certainly make sense considering Brooke’s recent lack of direction since splitting from Charlotte again. But this Emmalina character appears much different than the persona she featured prior to the injury. WWE officials were impressed with her work in early 2016 but wanted to accentuate her looks more this time.
Emmalina made her main-roster debut as Emma in January of 2014. She began her WWE career with a similar feud she had in NXT, against Summer Rae. However, it was used primarily as a set-up to form a partnership between Emma and Santino Marella. The duo formed what eventually amounted to nothing more than a comedy pairing. Santino would be forced to retire from in-ring competition in July of 2014, ending their short-lived alliance that didn’t have a very long shelf life to begin with.
A month prior to Santino’s retirement, Emma found herself in trouble with the law when she was caught shoplifting at a Connecticut Walmart. In one of the more bizarre moves by WWE, the company released her shortly after charges were filed, only to reverse that decision mere hours later. Emma received a second chance but ultimately would not be seen on the main roster again for nearly two years.
As we pointed out back in May, WWE officials were thrilled with her improvement ever since the shoplifting incident and how she’s totally revamped her image in and out of the ring.
Those officials give Emma all the credit as it pertains to her change in on-screen character. Once a fun-loving sidekick to a comedy act, Emma became a serious heel who claimed it was all about her. And judging by Emmalina’s recent social media activity, she intends on resuming her role as a heel. She had many within the company pushing for her to become a champion back in the spring, and now with the brand split, that possibility is even greater.
[Featured Image by WWE]