Wrestling: Alexander Rusev
Get used to seeing this (With Lana)."Русев удря, Русев мачка!"English Miroslav Barnyshev
(born December 25, 1985) is a Bulgarian
professional wrestler better known by his ring name Alexander Rusev
(eventually shortened to just "Rusev") working for WWE
. As of early November 2014, he has not been pinned or made to submit in over 70 matches (although he has numerous losses by disqualification), and is WWE's reigning United States Champion, defeating Sheamus
in a WWE Network-exclusive match following Monday Night Raw on November 3.That Other Wiki
has a rundown
on his life and career.
- Badass Beard / Beard of Evil
- Bilingual Bonus: Occasionally slips in a few deadpan lines in Bulgarian even insulting Stephanie McMahon to her face on Raw. This has actually made him quite popular in Bulgaria.
- Boring but Practical: His camel clutch finisher.
- The Baroness: Lana fits here somewhat, as she definitely seems to get some kind of enjoyment out of watching Rusev hurt people. The only real issue is that, apart from being a very attractive woman in a criminally short skirt, there's not really anything outwardly sexual about her character.
- The Brute: He's even explicitly called the "Bulgarian Brute". See Red Baron.
- Cool Teacher: Rikishi and Gangrel is as odd a combination as any.
- Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: Got John Cena to pass out to the Accolade at Fast Lane 2015. Just pinning Cena would've been impressive, but it becomes this trope since it had been over a decade since Cena lost to a submission hold.
- Does Not Like Shoes: He instead wears MMA-style footwraps.
- Early-Bird Cameo: Appears in a music video for Kushinator's "The Whole F'n Show" - which was Rob Van Dam's TNA entrance theme.
- Was an entrant in the 2014 Royal Rumble, several weeks before making his Raw debut.
- Early Installment Weirdness: He appeared quite different originally on NXT. Lana was not at his side, he came to the ring wearing a skirt and his theme music resembled that of an islander's. Also, he carried a plank with his opponent's name to the ring, which he would break in half before the match.
- Expy: He looks like a mixture of Vladimir Kozlov and Umaga. His wrestling style reveals obvious Samoan influences, which makes sense, as one of his teachers was Rikishi of the famed Anoa'i clan (and, in fact, Umaga's brother)
- His partnership with Lana was specifically modeled after and compared to Ivan and Ludmilla Drago. Lampshaded by Xavier Woods, who called him an "Ivan Drago-looking piece of garbage."
- Due to his beard, burly frame and shooter-ish gimmick, he somewhat evokes the UWF era Gary Albright. He even had a Suplex Finisher back in NXT.
- Lana also has a little bit of a Russian Vickie Guerrero going on, thanks to always beginning her speeches with a Russian equivalent to Vickie's "Excuse Me!"
- Fake Nationality: Invoked In-Universe. He's a Bulgarian (and was billed as such in his initial appearances) that really wants to be Russian. In fact, ring announcers consistently make it a point to bill him as "now residing in" Moscow as opposed to being from there.
- Played with for Lana, who plays a Russian nationalist but was born in America but grew up in (initially) Soviet-controlled Latvia, which explains her fluent Russian.
- Finishing Move: The Accolade, essentially a glorified camel clutch.
- Foreign Wrestling Heel: Straightest example of the trope to appear for WWE in several years. He was already earning strong heat when, at the 2014 Battleground pay-per-view, Lana turned things up several notches with an anti-United States promo; even though she did not specifically mention it, the mainstream media and many viewers claimed there was a strong tie-in to the crash of Malaysian Flight MH17, which killed 295 people just three days before the pay-per-view event and something that increased tensions between the United States and Russia. It got to the point where WWE became concerned about its image, having to clarify, as well as cool down on the Rusev and Lana push for a couple of weeks.
- Hulk Speak: Sometimes dipped into this at the beginning of his career, but subverted as his command of the English language (or at least his ability to recite the English language) has obviously improved.
- The Juggernaut: Hasn't lost a match by pinfall or submission since his debut.
- Karma Houdini: Rusev has found himself laid out a couple of times, but for all of her bad-mouthing America, Lana always gets away scot-free.
- Large Ham: Lana has a particularly booming voice. Just listen to the way she says "RRRRRRRRUUUSEEEEEV!!!"
- Last Name Basis: Some time into the beginning of his run, the "Alexander" was dropped from his name completely, and he simply became known as "Rusev."
- Lightning Bruiser: This man is deceptively fast and agile for someone of his build; he's often, and accurately, described as "explosive".
- Limited Wardrobe: Lana appears as if she has one outfit that simply changes colors every show.
- Mother Russia Makes You Strong: Lana believes so, and apparently so did Rusev, who has relocated from Bulgaria to Moscow.
- The Quiet One: Lana does most of his talking for him. Subverted in that this only applies on the microphone and is due to him not knowing/speaking much English, as Rusev can be seen often shouting presumably in Bulgarian away from the mic. Like Roman Reigns in The Shield before him, he turns into a Screaming Warrior in battle.
- Red Baron: The "Super Athlete", the "Bulgarian Brute", and recently the "Hero of the Russian Federation".
- Stout Strength
- Ur Example: The first Bulgarian to wrestle for WWE.
- Wrestling Monster: Closer to the Umaga end of the scale than, say, The Big Show, but nonetheless spent much of 2014 seemingly unstoppable.