Wrestling / Roman Reigns

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One Versus All.Note 
"I'm not a bad guy, I'm not a good guy... I'm the guy."

Leati Joseph "Joe" Anoa'i (born May 25, 1985) is a Samoan-American professional wrestler. A former college Collegiate American Football player for Georgia Tech, then briefly a pro-football player for the Jacksonville Jaguars and Edmonton Eskimos, he signed a developmental contract with World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) in July 2010, and was assigned to Florida Championship Wrestling (FCW), WWE's developmental promotion, using the ring name Roman Leakee. While in FCW, Roman and partner Mike Dalton won the FCW Florida Tag-Team Championship off of Corey Graves and Jake Carter in June 15, 2012, before CJ Parker and Jason Jordan won it off them on July 13, 2012. Renamed Roman Reigns when FCW was rebranded as NXT, he debuted on the main roster at the 2012 Survivor Series PPV as a member of The Shield alongside Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins.

While a part of the group, Reigns was a WWE Tag Team Champion (with Rollins), tied the WWE record for most eliminations in a Survivor Series elimination match with four in 2013, and set the record for most eliminations in a Royal Rumble match with 12 at the 2014 match. After the dissolution of The Shield in June 2014, Reigns became a singles competitor, winning the 2015 Royal Rumble, the 2014 Superstar of the Year Slammy Award, and becoming a three time WWE World Heavyweight Champion and a one-time United States Champion.


Superman Tropes!:

  • Aborted Arc:
    • Whatever his gimmick in NXT was, got dropped when he debuted with The Shield.
    • His feud with Seth Rollins was cut short after Reigns required emergency surgery because of a hernia.
    • His feud with Bray Wyatt at one point involved having Wyatt making threatening remarks while showing a picture of Reigns' daughter. This particular part of the angle was quickly abandoned, as Reigns was understandably uncomfortable with it.
    • A second feud with Seth Rollins was also cut short. Reigns earned a title shot against World Heavyweight Champion Seth Rollins at Survivor Series 2015. Unfortunately Rollins got injured and had to relinquish his title.
  • Actually Pretty Funny: When Rusev taunted him on the April 11, 2016 episode of Raw ("I'm bigger than you, I'm stronger than you... and yes, I'm better-looking than you too.") Roman visibly cracked up. To be fair, the comic timing of Rusev's delivery was pretty much perfect.
  • Adult Fear: His post-Money in the Bank 2015 feud with Bray Wyatt, early on, seemed to play into this. Their first confrontation after Wyatt screwed Roman out of winning the MITB briefcase ended with Wyatt making threatening remarks while staring at a picture of Reigns' daughter.
  • Ambiguously Brown: This was how he initially came off, as WWE completely avoided any references to his Samoan heritage until Royal Rumble 2015. The big Samoan tribal tattoo was a dead giveaway, so even casuals probably knew that already.
  • Anti-Hero: After The Shield turned face (and eventually disbanded), he continued displaying similar tactics to the ones The Shield used as heels, just now against different targets:
    • He pretty much tried to murder Seth Rollins with a cinderblock after Rollins curbstomped Ambrose through one, and tried to do the same to Reigns. After fighting Rollins and Kane off, Reigns picked up one of the cinderblocks and circled around Rollins so he would see it coming before hurling it at Rollins' head. Rollins got out of the way, obviously, but damn.
    • He tried more or less to play the straight hero for a while... then TLC 2015 happened, which was one screw-over too many, and he sort of lost it at that point. In a 24-hour period, he laid waste to (almost) the entire League of Nations (twice), put Triple H in a hospital, and punched out Vince McMahon himself.
  • Arch-Enemy:
    • The Authority, particularly Triple H. It seems the primary locus of the Authority feud post-Daniel Bryan has essentially come down to him vs. Triple H, with the stable's erstwhile centerpeices Randy Orton, Seth Rollins, and Sheamus serving as Triple H's proxies. First Triple H did many things to slowly piss Reigns off even as far back as the Shield run, between having Kane bring the then-dysfunctional Shield back in line by any means necessary including beating them up with the New Age Outlaws when they wouldn't stay off The Wyatt Family (more on that below), and then trying to have them take out Daniel Bryan and cost him the title after the fact like it was still SummerSlam 2013. This resulted in Reigns spearing Triple H to cement the Shield's face turn and directing pointed Twitter comments about kings and soldiers towards Triple H during the ensuing Shield vs. Evolution feud. Following Triple H's Plan B, causing Seth Rollins to betray him and Dean Ambrose, he left the matter of Rollins' due receipts on Ambrose's plate while focusing on physically showing up Randy Orton for the Broken Ace he really was — until Orton was no longer part of the Authority. Then they were fine. Meanwhile, Triple H and his cronies kept on pushing his buttons — helping Rollins win the briefcase that screwed him out of his WrestleMania moment, all the crap they put Dean through,note  then letting the bros think they were fighting for a clean and fair shot to walk out as the champ after Rollins got hurt only to pull the same shenanigans as before with Sheamus. Reigns eventually couldn't take it any more and all but destroyed Triple H, leaving him lying in a hospital bed, only for Triple H to decide to get rid of the proxies, enter in the Royal Rumble as the #30 in which Reigns was forced by the McMahons to enter as the #1 to defend the title, and eliminate him and win the title. At this point, Triple H and him might very well become enemies for life — even Wyatt didn't piss him off this much.
    • Bray Wyatt. Another feud that goes back to the Shield days. The Wyatt Family and The Shield first butted heads in fall 2013, but avoided coming to blows due to having common enemies. The same wasn't true in early 2014 when they Wyatts cost the Shield a chance to enter a WWE title match at the Elimination Chamber by interfering and attacking John Cena — which set up both Bray's feud with Cena and the interceding Wyatt Family vs. Shield six-man tag team wars of awesome over the next few months. Although the Wyatts served as a test for the psyche of the Shield as a whole, it was clear even then that Reigns was the primary focus of Bray's interest among the Hounds of Justice. In the year's time following the breakup of the two stables, Bray picked feuds with Ambrose as well as Reigns. While he was malicious and scathing towards Dean, he was far moreso towards Roman — Reigns was the one Wyatt continuously insisted he'd allow anyone but to succeed, the one whose daughter he implicitly threatened at one point, and the one he reconvened the Wyatt Family against. The latter fact caused Roman and Dean to realign once again and pick up random third partners to take the Family on, including the aforementioned Orton and even accepting what they thought would be Seth Rollins' help for one night because they were such a problem. When it came down to it, the true conflict is between Reigns and Wyatt, and the hatred only seemed to grow week by week. It eventually culminated in a Hell in a Cell match, because the two hated each other that much. And even moving forward, Bray was quick to promise that he and Roman would lock horns again, and he openly endorsed the McMahons' quest to deprive Reigns of the title.
  • The Artifact: The only one left out of The Shield still using (a variation of) the Shield's theme, wearing the black paramiltary-style gear, and coming down the aisle through the crowd like the Shield used to do - though even that has now disappeared since the build-up to WrestleMania 32.
  • Badass Baritone: Reigns doesn't talk often, but he has a deep, booming voice.
  • Badass Beard: Doubles as a Beard of Evil when Reigns is a heel.
  • Badass in a Nice Suit: For a few weeks in NXT he wore a suit while making promos, before joining the Shield.
  • Badass Boast: The following exchange with Brock Lesnar;
    Lesnar: Unlike him, I don't respect you.
    Reigns: But you will.
  • Badbutt:
    • Not intentionally, as he's actually more free to use mild curse words than others on the roster, but can sometimes come across as this with certain lines he's given to say by Vince McMahon. The design of a character is usually correlated with how they act; Roman was booked as a badass fighter in riot gear during The Shield. Now imagine that warrior, say:
    • Many of these lines sound like things Reigns' cousin The Rock would say; in fact Rock has used the "sufferin' succotash" line in a promo on Booker T during the Alliance storyline in 2001. The difference is Rock had an incredibly rare gift of gab and was packaged as a cool jock to match, both sharp contrasts from the warrior-vested introvert Reigns. Thus, the same kinds of odd expressions Rock can make sound natural or even get trending worldwide just by claiming the fact will come across as flat, weird, and even somewhat dim coming from Reigns.note 
  • Baddie Flattery: Paul Heyman can't stop heaping it on him, right before saying that despite being as good as he is, he still can't beat Brock Lesnar.
  • Berserk Button: When he was told that he couldn't beat Brock Lesnar for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Towards Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins, his Shield "brothers." He was very protective of them and did not hesitate to wreck anyone who tried to get at them. He also makes a point of going to check on them to make sure they're not hurt. When they're not in a match, Reigns acts like a affectionate big brother: clapping them on the shoulders, bantering with them, bodily dragging them away from enemies they aren't ready to face, etc. During his feud with Seth, he had a tag match against him where he told him, "You'll always be my little brother," making it unclear if he still cares about Seth even after the latter's betrayal or if Roman was just playing mind-games. He's still got this for Ambrose long after the dissolution of the Shield.
  • The Big Guy: After The Shield turned face.
  • Bookends: Reigns started his ascent to the top at the 2015 Royal Rumble in Philadelphia, who booed him out of the building. He completed his ascent eleven months later, in the very same city, on the December 14, 2015 edition of Raw, and the crowd that once shunned him couldn't cheer loud enough when he won the title.
  • Breakout Character: Since it's become more obvious in the booking that WWE looks at Reigns as a potential successor to the top face throne, there was a bit of fear about him from fans that were afraid of what this could mean for Rollins and Ambrose's post-Shield futures—namely a lack thereof. This was understandable, as WWE has been detrimentally addicted to the idea of manufacturing breakup breakouts ever since Shawn Michaels unintentionally left his Rockers tag team partner Marty Jannetty in the dust. This calmed down significantly once the breakup of the Shield and the resulting storyline completely laid bare the fact that WWE intended to do major things with all three of them. Furthermore, everything suggests that Rollins and Ambrose have as good a chance as any in recent memory of averting the pattern, having been given enough character depth from their time in developmental all the way into the stretch of their run with the Shield that no one can objectively deny their importance, culminating with all three of them becoming WWE World Heavyweight Champions by June 2016.
  • Brick Joke:
    • Right when he's about to have a big singles match on pay-per-view against Seth Rollins, fate will intervene and cut it off with an injury before the match can happen. Twice. note  Averted in 2016 when Rollins came back to reclaim the WWE World Heavyweight Championship while Reigns was the champion. Reigns had failed a Wellness test prior to the event where their match was to finally take place, but that wasn't a reason to stop the match yet again, just to have Rollins beat him when it finally happened.
    • Right when he's on the cusp of walking out of a show as the WWE World Heavyweight Champion, he gets blindsided and pinned by the Money in the Bank contract holder and Authority-chosen centerpiece whose full ring name both starts and end with the letter S. Also twice.note 
  • The Brute: Shows shades of this. He's by far the largest and most muscular man of The Shield. He also talks the least (but when he does, it's usually REALLY LOUD), and he does the most heavy lifting on the trio.
  • Catch Phrase: "Believe that." "Assess and attack" was this for awhile after the Shield's breakup. After winning the WWE title (to mixed at best reviews), he's started his ring promos with "I'm not a bad guy, I'm not a good guy, but I'm the guy".
  • The Chosen One: It's rumored that some WWE officials see Reigns as the next top company face - or, in other words, the successor to John Cena.
  • Composite Character:
    • The penchant for spears and the looks (as well as the through-the-crowd entrance) of early-career Edge, the color, bloodline, and physical profile of The Rock, and athleticism to match them both. All that's missing now is the polish, both in the ring and on the mic.
    • One could also make the argument he's an early-career composite of The Rock, Edge, John Cena, Kevin Nash, Batista and Randy Orton, with traits from each.
  • Cool Shades: Often cut promos with them on in FCW and NXT during his brief "boss" gimmick in between an injury and the Shield.
  • Cue the Flying Pigs:
    • Many fans felt this way when Philadelphia marked out for him, especially after what happened eleven months prior. Reigns went from Creator's Pet to the most popular face in the company not named Daniel Bryan or Dean Ambrose, in the span of twenty-four hours — seemingly undoing a lot if not all the damage his Cena-type booking had caused. And all it took was a ten minute-No-Holds-Barred Beatdown of Triple H. Even the biggest of his fans were a bit disoriented by the sway in majority opinion, especially in such a short amount of time.
    • When he started losing clean, this was the reaction of the fans, who had been conditioned to react as if he were Cena and would win all the time and only lose via shenanigans. First he lost to Seth Rollins (which one could argue wasn't clean because there was a ref bump at one point), then Dean Ambrose (though it was a triple threat match, Roman ate the pin), and then Finn Bálor, a guy who had just been called up from developmental (clean as a whistle).
  • A Day in the Limelight: As a member of The Shield, Reigns first got his time in the sun at Survivor Series 2013, when he eliminated four of a five-man team. The focus on him continued through to the end of the Shield's feud with The Wyatt Family. In the midst of this was the 2014 Royal Rumble, where he made his Rumble debut in a big way, staying in for over 30 minutes and breaking Kane's 13 year record by throwing out 12 people.
  • Determinator: His match against Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania 31: went through three F-5s, countless trips to, as Lesnar coined it, "Suplex City," and even earning a couple of hard slaps, and he still went ahead and busted Lesnar open. Twice.
  • Did You Just Flip Off Cthulhu?: At WrestleMania 31. While exactly what he was saying could be made out, from the look on his face, he was talking some serious trash to Brock Lesnar even as Brock delivered a beating on the level of the one he had handed Cena at SummerSlam. On more than one occasion during the match, he laughed at Lesnar while he was being pummeled and thrown around the ring.
  • Dynamic Entry:
    • It's not uncommon for Roman to come flying in from off-camera with a Spear or a Superman Punch.
    • In a non-Spear related example: On the July 7th 2014 Raw, Kane & Orton interferred in John Cena's match with Seth Rollins. When Reigns' music hit & he was heading down the ramp, Kane left the ring to cut him off, only for Roman to fly into the screen in the midst of the Superman Punch.
    • He's blindsided at least two opponents with the following strategy: a teammate distracts the opponent in question while he strolls up the ramp, Reigns goes through the crowd and around the tech area and then blasts the poor schmuck with a wicked Spear. With good camera work, the viewer will have no idea Reigns is gonna get the jump on the guy until it happens.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Appeared along with Seth Rollins in a promo about John Cena at Elimination Chamber 2012, though Roman was known as Leakee back then.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: It took him eleven months of being scorned by fans, having to endure terrible booking, and working his ass off, but when Reigns won the title for a real reign, few will deny that he deserved it.
  • Enemy Mine: Shortly after Mania 32, Reigns was put in a tag match against the League of Nations with former arch enemy Bray Wyatt as his partner. Contrary to expectations, Reigns and Wyatt actual worked amazingly well as a team.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: On a February 2014 episode of Monday Night Raw, he defeated Mark Henry 100% cleanly in about three minutes flat. As Rollins congratulated Reigns after the match, Ambrose attacked a vulnerable Henry (signs pointed to Ambrose being jealous that, for all intents and purposes, Reigns is a better wrestler than he is). In response to Dean losing his cool (as if that doesn't happen often), Reigns and Rollins gave Ambrose a "What the hell, dude?" look from inside the ring.note 
  • Expy: Multi-generational wrestler that first appears as part of a Power Stable, is attached to Triple H, later breaks away and turns face, and appears to be on the fast track to main event status... Reigns 2013-2014, or Randy Orton 2003-2004? He even gets over the same way. Orton had a hard time getting over as a face and thus got his main event push as a heel — as it turns out, all he needed to do was beat up people the fans Love to Hate or had X-Pac Heat, like the McMahons (which is ironic because they finally got him over as a face when he was supposed to be getting over as the top heel). Reigns doesn't need to be some weird fusion of The Rock, John Cena, or Daniel Bryan, all he needs to do is beat people up (and not "overcome the odds") and talk less. Hence, his No-Holds-Barred Beatdown on Triple H did more for him in ten minutes than the last ten months of booking beforehand.
    • In move set, look, and presence, Reigns is very much in the vein of Batista in character, despite the company's attempts to make him like promo-heavy John Cena.
  • Extreme Melee Revenge: On the League of Nations and Triple H after TLC 2015 - and how.
  • Fatal Flaw: When Sheamus tells you that you're too violent and too willing to fight, you might have a problem.
  • Finishing Move: The spear.
  • Five Moves of Doom:
    • As a singles star, it looks like his finishing sequence is developing into: leaping clothesline into the corner, uppercut, running single-leg dropkick from the floor, Superman punch, spear. For the most part, the spear gets interrupted in some fashion.
    • He eventually began to avert this trope. Say what you will, but he heard the complaints that his moveset wasn't broad enough and he has been expanding it massively ever since. Every week he seems to pull some new trick out of his hat, similarly to John Cena.
  • Fleeting Demographic Rule:
    • Survivor Series 2015 is basically a rehash of the ending of SummerSlam 2013, with Reigns as Bryan and Sheamus as Orton. It's being rejected by a firm majority of the fans, because it hasn't been nearly as long enough to feasibly reuse the storyline, Reigns is nowhere near as over as Bryan, and trying to convince the audience that Reigns is a Daniel Bryan-type underdog — when it's clear that the company supports him far more than they ever did Bryan or anyone else on the roster not named Orton — is seen as insulting their intelligence. As for Sheamus, he has been considered irrelevant for a while now due to a string of injuries putting him on the shelf, plus his complete inability to get over enough to justify a world title reign.
    • They eventually realized that the Daniel Bryan-rehash wasn't going to work out and scrapped that, but were reluctant to turn him heel with the roster so thin on main event faces (Reigns was effectively the only full-time main event face at the time besides arguably Dean Ambrose, even if it was only because the company was pushing him that way — Cena was taking time off, Orton got injured and Daniel Bryan was still not and would never be cleared). So they went the "Stone Cold" Steve Austin route instead and had him snap and beat the utter crap out of Triple H. That was well-received.
  • Happily Married: As of late 2014.
  • Heel–Face Turn: With The Shield's collective Heel–Face Turn against The Authority.
  • History Repeats:
    • Reigns' career mirrors his cousin's a lot in the sense that Vince is trying to get him over as close to a goody-two shoes face character that you can get in this day and age, only to be utterly rejected by fans (though Reigns is more divisive since, no matter how much the fans hate his character, they agree he can at least pull out a decent match). In fact, the parallels are so eerie that many are beginning to wonder if fate is trying to tell Vince something.
    • His suspension and its aftermath is already getting comparisons to the Curtain Call incident with Triple H. Hunter spent months as a jobber to the stars and the push he was going to get by winning the King of the Ring tournament went to someone else, inadvertently leading to the rise of "Stone Cold" Steve Austin. While Reigns hasn't fallen quite as far as Hunter (yet), it's obvious his role as the new Cena has been temporarily revoked if not scrapped all together — he's eaten three clean pins in the space of month. That's more than what Cena eats per year. The suspension also led to Dean Ambrose finally becoming a permanent main eventer (which is also rather fitting, as Ambrose is — ironically — the only member of the Shield to not embarrass the company in some fashion).
  • How Much More Can He Take?:
    • Reigns invoked this big-time at WrestleMania 31 vs Brock Lesnar. During the match, Reigns ate FOUR F-5s from Brock Lesnar (it took THREE for Brock to beat Undertaker at WrestleMania) and a Curb Stomp from Seth Rollins before finally being pinned.
    • Then came the 8/15/16 edition of RAW, which is perhaps a better example of this trope and one of the most toughest Main Event matches in his WWE career as he faced the full brunt of Rusev's rage for ruining the man's wedding celebration with Lana the week before. Before said match, Rusev attacked him from behind and left one of his arms dinged. Despite the minor injury, Roman still decided to fight in the match. And in said match, he took an assortment of beatings that was draining THE life out of him. From more than one chairless headshots (ironically still half-nearing the number of steel chair headshots Mick Foley got from The Rock), kicks to the back (most likely the spine), risking getting his other arm damaged by the steel steeps. And Reigns managed to kick out like a mere six times, despite all the varied beatings. More than once (with a bad arm), he slipped out of Rusev's sleeper hold. In conclusion, Reigns still managed to perform his signature moves and eventually win the match.
  • Hunk: Reigns has been met with a very... positive reception from the female demographic. The ripped form, the sexy voice, and the smile may have something to do with it. There's a group that encouraged the split-up up the Shield simply because it may have meant that he (and both of the others) would finally ditch the vests and wrestle in something a little less comfortable. At Payback 2014, when Triple H stripped Reigns' vest and shirt off, you could definitely hear a decidedly female sigh/whimper throughout the audience. A Father's Day PSA he did definitely cements him as this.
  • I Know Madden Kombat: Occasionally, you'll see Reigns take off from a three-point stance when he uses the spear. Reigns has a collegiate and Canadian football background as a defensive lineman, which is one of the positions where the three-point stance is most often utilized. Compare Reigns' Spear with any available videos of a good football form tackle.
  • Informed Flaw: Since turning heel, Rollins has talked about how Reigns is full of unbelievable anger and that Reigns is nothing without him because only he could harness Reigns's power effectively. Neither thing has been proved thus far; Reigns is actually quite calm and collected for a wrestler (apart from that "screaming at the sky" thing), and has continued to decimate opponents without Rollins. Even when he's furiously beating away at a hated enemy he focuses on the beating rather than wasting time Chewing the Scenery or falling into psychosis.
  • It Runs in the Family: Reigns is at least the tenth guy from his bloodline to appear in a WWF/E ring. Others include Rikishi (and his sons The Usos), The Original Wild Samoans (who are his father and uncle), the late Umaga and Yokozuna, the Tonga Kid, and his brother, who went by the name Rosey. Oh, and his cousin, Dwayne something or other. Oh, and somebody finally put all of this together into family tree format. In the Blood might be an understatement. Appropriately, his team-up with the Usos in spring 2016 against AJ Styles and The Club was called The Bloodline.
  • The Juggernaut: As member of the Shield, he was fixated on letting no one and nothing stand in the ring, be it by a spear or by other way, coming across less as a human weapon and more a force of nature. And after months of WWE messing it up, the old Roman finally showed up again at TLC 2015.
  • Kiai: Any time he rears his head back and roars to the heavens, you can bet your ass that somebody is gonna take a powerbomb or a Spear.
  • Legacy Character: Of The Rock, at least in physical profile. Both are third-generation wrestlers with Samoan origins. (From the same family, in fact) They have similar body build and athleticism, also both played College Football (same position, in fact). Reigns' earlier finisher also bears a passing resemblance to the Rock Bottom in execution.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Reigns stands taller than Triple H and weighs in at 265 pounds, and was rightfully pushed as the 'powerhouse' of the Shield. Of course, having been a former Division I college football player, his above average athleticism for his size is to be expected. What you might not expect, though, is for a guy this size to be able to easily clear the top rope on a suicide dive.
  • Malaproper: Sometimes, due to either being given really bad material to work with and/or flubbing since he's not a natural on the mic, he will come out with some memorably unfortunate lines. Examples below:
    • Once claimed in an interview that every time he gets to "the summit, the very top," an "avalanche" knocks him down.
    • During a promo with the Big Show, Reigns told him, "You know who didn't have to remind people they were a giant? André the Giant." despite the obvious little note that it's in his name.
    • Once told Dean Ambrose as it pertains to possibly meeting in the finals of a world title tournament that they'll "jump off that bridge together" when the correct expression would be "cross that bridge when we get there".
    • Talked about how he planned to "take every rung off" a ladder beating Sheamus with it during their upcoming world title ladder match, then failed to clarify that he was talking about a different ladder when he mentioned climbing the ladder to win the belt.
  • Manly Tears: At Survivor Series 2015, after losing the title to Sheamus, who cashed in his Money in the Bank briefcase.
  • Meet My Good Friends "Lefty" and "Righty": On the June 2nd, 2014 episode of Monday Night Raw, Roman Reigns called Randy Orton to the ring, for their scheduled one-on-one match that night, with the following threat:
    Reigns: Randy Orton, bring your ass out here and let me break your jaw with the symbol of excellence. [gestures to his right fist]
  • Megaton Punch: Or rather, Superman Punch.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: To the League of Nations and Triple H at the end of TLC 2015, after getting screwed out of the title again. While Hunter the person is quite respected and many wish for him to take over the company, Hunter the character is hated to the point that it managed to do in ten minutes what the last ten months of booking couldn't do: get Reigns over.
  • Oh, Crap!: The 2016 Royal Rumble. Reigns has just entered at #1 and has thrown out #2, Rusev. He waits for #3... And AJ Styles comes out. Reigns has been in the ring with every other person in this Rumble. He knows what to expect from them. But AJ? He's a complete Wild Card. You could just see the wheels turning his head, thinking to himself as he watched AJ enter the ring, "How in the hell do I throw him out?"
  • Out of Focus: Reigns had to be written out for a significant portion of the build to WrestleMania 32 because he had to get surgery for a deviated septum.note  That meant his part of the build for his match with Triple H had to be done with Dean Ambrose (who was the only full-time main event talent left active at that point) as a proxy, as Ambrose's own opponent was the part-timer Brock Lesnar, who was only booked for a couple of shows.
  • The Quiet One:
    • More so in The Shield, where he mainly left the talking to Dean and Seth while he himself was portrayed as a running tank with an element of mystery. He would occasionally subvert this, though, at times getting loud when preparing to put the finishing touches on a team beatdown. See an early example below:
      Reigns: [before preparing to put an opponent through an announcer's table at ringside] GET UP, FOOLS! THIS IS MY TABLE NOW!
    • He even established his status as such during the interview with The Shield conducted by Michael Cole. Rollins and Ambrose did quite literally all of the talking, until:
      Cole: Roman... I'd love to get your take on all this.
      Reigns: [in an eerily calm voice] When I wanna say something... I'll say it.
    • After the dissolution of the group, Reigns spent much more time on the mic — though many would say he was much better as the strong silent warrior of justice.
  • Pay Evil unto Evil:
    • What he did to Vickie Guerrero and Stephanie McMahon to get into the Money in the Bank world title qualifiers battle royal. While spiking your boss's drink isn't exactly a good thing to do, Stephanie and Vickie aren't exactly innocent people- especially Stephanie, who's been tyrannically abusing her power as a McMahon since the previous year's SummerSlam. Furthermore, the dosage level was akin to that of what Vickie's late husband Eddie had done to The Big Show's burrito in 2003,note  as opposed to the worse variation which Stephanie herself had done to Shawn Michaels' water during his feud with Vince and Shane McMahon in 2006.note 
    • After Rollins curb-stomped Ambrose's head through some cinderblocks, and tried to do the same to Reigns, Reigns picked up one of those cinderblocks and hurled it at Rollins' head with enough force that, after Rollins ducked out of the way, it shattered on the ring post so hard that shards of it hit Jerry Lawler.
  • Power Trio:
  • Rage Breaking Point: After months and months of being cheated out of championships or championship opportunities, Reigns appeared content to more or less be John Cena and keep fighting through all the turmoil, while mostly just taking out his frustration on his opponents. At the 2015 TLC event, however, he veered into Randy Orton/Stone Cold territory and spent 10 minutes kicking Triple H's ass in just about every way he could think ofnote , leaving The Game hospitalized. It got so bad that Jerry Lawler, the consummate babyface commentator, implied that perhaps Roman should be arrested.
  • Ramming Always Works: He uses the Spear to devastating effect.
  • Rapunzel Hair: A Rare Male Example that reached his waist at one point.
  • Red Baron: Michael Cole dubbed Roman Reigns "The Powerhouse" or "The Juggernaut" of the Shield. Leakee was occasionally referred to as "The Blessed One" in FCW. Paul Heyman took to calling him "The Samoan Badass" during the build up to WrestleMania 31.
  • Reveal Shot: One awesome instance involved Triple H, who was actively avoiding Roman after he got the living daylights beaten out of a week before, picking up wife backstage. As his SUV prepares to leave the building, the garage door slowly opens and by extension slowly reveals a pissed-off Roman. Cue further ensuing Extreme Melee Revenge.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Reigns was content to let Ambrose go and get his vengeance on Rollins while taking his own path against the Authority; Rollins putting Ambrose on the shelf with a Curb Stomp through a pile of cinder blocks had the unfortunate side effect of Reigns immediately turning his full attention to his former Shield brethren, taking up Ambrose's mantle of revenge.
  • The Scapegoat: On the July 25, 2016 edition of Raw, he was publicly and solely blamed by Stephanie McMahon, of all people, for allowing Dean Ambrose to win the main event of the previous night's Battleground pay-per-view, thus giving SmackDown Live (who drafted Ambrose, while Raw drafted the other two former Shield members) the rights to the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. The main event in question was a Triple Threat Match between him, Rollins and Ambrose.
  • Screw the Money, I Have Rules!: After Rollins suddenly had to vacate the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, Triple H called for a tournament to determine the new champion - about a week after Reigns had earned the #1 contendership to face Rollins for the title in a one-on-one match. So Trips tried to cut a deal with Reigns: He could be exempted from the tournament and, in fact, be waiting at the end to fight whoever won for the title, if he only submitted himself to the Authority. Reigns, predictably, was too honorable to take the deal.
  • Ship Tease: Seems to have this dynamic with Renee Young whenever she interviews him since the Shield face turn.
  • Shout-Out: In addition to the Reigns' Superman Punch referencing, well, Superman with its name he's stated that he got the idea from Troy.
  • Signature Move: It's pretty much a given that Roman Reigns will hit a Spear on someone during a match, even during his time with The Shield when he wasn't always extremely active during their tag matches. And if given the chance, he will not hesitate to Spear every single opponent. He's also adopted the use of a MMA-style superman punch as well as a spot that sees him use a flying front dropkick to the head of an opponent draped over the bottom rope.
  • Sir Swears-a-Lot: Obviously a less extreme example given the content rating, but, of the few swear words you can get away with saying on PG programming, Reigns uses them quite a bit more liberally than the average guy. For whatever reason, he's especially fond of the word "bitch."
  • Slipknot Ponytail: Initially, he had his hair tied, but started keeping his hair down a couple months after the Shield's debut.
  • Smug Smiler: Even as a face, Roman has a particularly smug smile.
    • Even moreso after becoming the World Heavyweight Champion, particularly in promos featuring Stephanie McMahon.
  • Smug Snake: Only on NXT.
  • Spam Attack: If The Shield are involved in a match with multiple opponents, Roman Reigns will resort to this with his Spear if necessary. Taken Up to Eleven with his dominant show of force in his Traditional Survivor Series match debut in 2013.
  • Staring Down Cthulhu: Was unflinching when face to face with Brock Lesnar, just twenty four hours removed from Lesnar's dominant performance against both John Cena and Seth Rollins.
  • Suicide Attack: Downplayed. Reigns won't think twice about Spearing an opponent through the barricade at ringside, which sometimes keeps Reigns himself down as long as the victim.
  • Take That!: His off-script reaction to a "Cena Sucks" chant breaking out during his promo:
    Reigns: When Roman Reigns is in the house, you're damn right Cena sucks!
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: While he still isn't a full-on villain... yet... he's gotten progressively edgier in early 2016. It started with his crazed No-Holds-Barred Beatdown of Triple H. He's started to become more detached from the fans, noticeably not entering through the crowd anymore,note  and doesn't pander as much to the fans as you'd expect out of a pure Face. He seemed to take a further level after finally winning the WWE World Heavyweight Championship back at WrestleMania 32. The Raw after the event (which famously features the most raucous and vocal crowd of the year), he was predictably met with a mixed reaction (read: mostly boos peppered by a few drown-out cheers here and there). His short promo afterward hinted at a smug and cocky side (that likely would have been his new heel gimmick in NXT if he hadn't been called up to the main roster for The Shield). Once this promo was interrupted by Sami Zayn, Kevin Owens, Chris Jericho, and AJ Styles, Reigns, who had incited an argument over who got the next title match, allowed the two pairs of bitter enemiesnote  to confront each other, stepped back while the fisticuffs started, waiting 'til one man (Jericho) was left stading in the ring.... and then he speared Jericho into the ground.
  • Tranquil Fury: Seems to have a bit of this going on when he's in serious warrior mode. Even when he's in "pissed off rampage leaving a trail of broken enemy bodies in his wake" mode, he talks and screams less than most would expect and focuses more on the beating.
  • Troll: He's been turning into this after becoming the World Heavyweight Champion, as demonstrated through this video.
    Reigns: You want to see her get really mad?
  • True Companions: Played wonderfully straight throughout the end of 2013 and into 2014. There was so much tension between Ambrose and Reigns that just about any other team/stable in WWE history would have long since imploded on itself— it seemed painfully obvious that WWE's creative team was setting up a team-wide split (possibly to turn Roman Reigns face and give him a push). Rollins, being the manipulative chessmaster that he is, gave the two something to confront as one when he walked out on them, then used the situation to convince them to put aside their issues, resulting in the Shield becoming stronger than ever and making a Heel–Face Turn.

    Sadly, after making it perfectly clear that the Shield were Evolution's superiors, Rollins stabbed Reigns and Ambrose in the back and would go on to claim that the brotherhood he presented the Shield as was just a lie that they believed in; to him they were nothing but business partners. However, once again the two responded only by banding closer together, and while they may have decided to split up and operate on their own, they still remain boys and are after the same targets.

    Reigns' and Ambrose's friendship even shows at Survivor Series 2015 when Ambrose congratulates Reigns for winning the World Heavyweight Championship after a giving each other a brutal beating.
  • Undying Loyalty: Dean Ambrose. Whenever one is in need, the other is always there, ready to help.
  • Unrelated Brothers: Inverted. As a member of the Anoa'i clan, he's Real Life cousins with The Rock as well as The Usos, with whom The Shield established something of a rivalry, resulting in a period of time where Reigns seemingly couldn't get through a week without being matched against them. Reigns' relationship with the Anoa'i family is never brought up - not even by JBL, who always seems to dig up that sort of information. It was finally acknowledged after the 2015 Royal Rumble, where Roman claimed that he purposefully never put his family ties out there so that he could forge his own path.
  • Unskilled, but Strong: Compared to his (former) partner Seth Rollins, Roman Reigns is lacking a bit in grace and finesse (he's not bad, but he's the least experienced wrestler and sometimes it shows). But he makes up for it by packing a lot of power in his punch, and his Spear is by far the most devastating one-man move in The Shield's arsenal.
  • Unstoppable Rage: After getting screwed out of the title one last time in 2015, Reigns went on a rampage, running roughshod over the League of Nations, culminating in him all but destroying Triple H, who had to be carried out of the arena on a stretcher.
  • Villainous Friendship: Had Type I of this with the Shield. Even given the fact that Ambrose was liable to fly off the handle at any moment (even towards his own teammates), the three of them clearly had each others' backs and even went on off-camera field trips to the zoo. This continued when they turned face and then, in Dean and Roman's case, after Seth turned on them and they decided to individualize.
  • Villainous Valour:
    • In a traditional five-on-five Survivor Series tag-team elimination match, Reigns and Rollins found themselves at a five-on-two disadvantage (much different than what The Hounds are used to) towards the end of the bout. Two Spears from Roman Reigns take out Jimmy Uso and Cody Rhodes. Rollins' curb stomp ("The Blackout") then eliminates Jey Uso. After Rey Mysterio pins Rollins, Reigns is alone against Rey and Goldust. Two Spears later, Roman Reigns has pinned both men, giving him four of the five eliminations for his team (tying a record for Survivor Series 5-on-5 matches).

      There was very minimal cheating,note  no fluke pins in their favor, and no ref bumps: just two teammates who, together, combined to be greater than the sum of their talents. Their teamwork and level of skill was so good that their cohesion as a group negated the fact that they were outnumbered five to two and the heels!
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Downplayed between Reigns and Ambrose, since the tension is glaringly obvious. Calling the two "best buds" would probably be a lie. At some point, Ambrose's admittedly impressive (if not just long) reign as United States Champion massively inflated his ego, to the point that he declared himself the best individual wrestler in The Shield. This is despite the fact that Roman Reigns damn near squashed Mark Henry on the February 17, 2014 edition of Raw, when Ambrose got dominated by the World's Strongest Man the week before. Reigns also has a (tied) Survivor-Series record, and a standalone Royal-Rumble record, to his name (see Unstoppable Rage/Villainous Valour above).

    The only thing Ambrose really had going for him was his status as United States Champion— a title he defended a grand total of 16 times in 351 days before losing it on the May 5, 2014 episode of Monday Night Raw. That's an average of about once every 22 days; most champions are expected to defend their titles every other week at the very least... plus the fact that 9 of those 16 matches ended in DQ or count-out.

    After the team nearly experienced a meltdown in late 2013/early 2014, Ambrose's ego seems to have cooled down significantly, however, as has the tension within The Shield. Even through Rollins' betrayal, Dean and Roman don't seem to be missing a beat, though they've chosen to operate separately.
  • Wild Samoan: Reigns averts the trope himself in his gimmick, but he is notably the son and nephew of the Trope Namers; his old gimmick in FCW, Leakee, played with it a bit, and he definitely evokes the ferocious warrior aspect, what with his roar to the heavens and all.
  • Worthy Opponent: When Finn Bálor defeated him on the July 25, 2016 episode of Raw, he admitted he hoped to face Bálor once more and had grown to respect him during their match.
  • Would Hit a Girl: He hit Stephanie McMahon with a Spear at WrestleMania 32 (though by accident).
  • Wrestling Family: He is part of the massive Anoa'i family of wrestlers, as described above, and is a cousin of the Usos. This was not acknowledged until January 26, 2015, the night after his Royal Rumble win.
  • Yank the Dog's Chain:
    • After taking a massive beating from Brock Lesnar in WrestleMania 31, Roman Reigns finally manages to turn the match around and is constantly hitting Lesnar with Superman Punches to finally put him down. There's no way he can lose the title, right? Well, Seth Rollins would like to have a say in that...
    • Survivor Series 2015 had a similar situation, Reigns had to defeat his best friend Dean Ambrose for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. Triple H goes in to congratulate Reigns, only for Reigns to spear Triple H unknowingly getting himself into a Brogue Kick by none other than Mr. Money in the Bank, Sheamus, who then shortly wins the title off of Reigns.


http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Wrestling/RomanReigns