The Gift That Keeps On Giving

By AJ Howells @AJHowler

As fans of WWE watched their fallen hero, former US champion Chris Jericho leave ringside on Tuesday night’s edition of Smackdown Live most knew it would be the last time they saw the scarf wearing, list making, stupid idiot scolding Canadian superstar for some time.

Jericho’s band, Fozzy, begin an extensive summer of international touring which could see Jericho gone until late 2017. He no doubt went out on top of his game after completing what most consider to be the greatest WWE stint of his career, probably only rivalled by his 2008 run with Shawn Michaels.

In the time that Chris Jericho has been back with WWE since his last sabbatical he’s been a cheesy babyface, then formed a wonderfully entertaining yet brutal heel combination with Kevin Owens and then completed a babyface turn that fans had been waiting for following a vicious beatdown by his former best friend. Whether you look at this period as individual pieces or a collective fan experience it has been stellar with Jericho moving away from his greatest hits of catchphrases only to replace them with new ones that have proved to be just as popular.

We’ve seen the former Ayatollah of Rock & Rolla get over a jacket that lights up, a scarf, a list where he adds people who have wronged him and the phrase “stupid idiot”. These new Jerichoisms haven’t been rammed down people’s throats rather they have just become the new Jericho’s MO. Fans are popping left, right and centre for a man to click a ball point pen…process that…a man of 40 years plus holds a pen in the air and people go mad. That is when you know you are in the presence of greatness. Only The Rock comes to mind as someone who can hold a crowd without a single word or action. If Rock is the most electrifying man in sports entertainment then Chris Jericho is surely not far behind.

There were down points of this run like the damp squib of a feud with Dean Ambrose, that culminated in the awful “Asylum Match”. However, throughout that whole angle Jericho was the entertaining part while Dean gurned and made funny faces Jericho cut some killer promos to keep the feud moving. Even in the payoff match it was the near 50-year-old Jericho who took the thumb tac bump. The man is as dedicated to his craft as anyone of any generation past, present or future.

The Jericho reinventions have always been a major part of the Chris Jericho character and whether it is the pineapple haired Y2J that debuted, the suit wearing Jericho of the mid 2000’s or the scarf sporting proprietor of the list they have all been unique and new, yet similar and familiar. As the minds of fans move now to thinking about what a returning Jericho may look and sound like I would imagine we see the babyface Y2J we have just waved a tearful goodbye to return to attempt to vanquish his destroyer in Kevin Owens. The scarf, the list and all of the other wonderful features of 2017 Chris Jericho should return and I think they will.

With Hall of Fame induction, Hollywood movies, television, hosting and/or anything he desires to do in the WWE in Jericho’s future who knows how much longer Chris Jericho, powered by DDP Yoga, can continue to perform at the highest level both in the ring and on the microphone. If, as Jericho says, he’s never felt better and never been better then let’s hope it is a long time yet as this Jerichoholic can never get enough of master of the Walls of Jericho.

Ladies and gentlemen this last few months has been the gift of Jericho…appreciate it maaaaaaaaaaaaaan!

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