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Characters / The Nexus

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The following are the members of the Nexus, the New Nexus and/or the Corre.

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     The New Nexus 

CM Punk

  • Arch-Enemy: John Cena, later Randy Orton.
  • Ax-Crazy: New Nexus initiations showed signs of this.
    • Aaaaand firmly cemented this as of 2-7-11.
  • Badass Beard of Evil
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: Punk is a result of this. Nexus wanted a newer, stronger leader, and they got one - they just got one who's not only both sadistic and Ax-Crazy, but also doesn't give a damn about them at all.
  • Big Bad: Replaces Wade Barrett as leader of Nexus after Cena defeated him.
  • The Chess Master: On the December 28, 2010 episode of Raw, John Cena called Punk out to the ring, but Punk refused to bite & said that he would call out Cena later. Towards the end of the show, Cena refuses to let Punk call him out & returns to the ring & calls Punk out again. Instead, Nexus come out & David Otunga remarks that Nexus "is under new management" before offering Cena a truce, which he refuses. Nexus then attack Cena, before CM Punk comes to the ring & reveals that he's the new leader of the group. Punk falls under both this & Magnificent Bastard when you realize that Punk had figured out everything Cena would do before Raw had even started. He even lampshades some of Cena's usual antics earlier in the show.
  • Deadpan Snarker
  • Eviler Than Thou
  • Evil Laugh
  • Full-Name Basis: His Feud with Randy Orton has had him politely referring to him as Randall Keith Orton.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: Waah? Punk's leader of Nexus?
    • Meh, not really. For the past couple of weeks he's been shown to be sympathetic towards the Nexus, so it's not too much of a stretch to think he'd join them.
    • Foreshadowing: Also, if one were to pay attention to said weeks, Punk wore a Charles Manson shirt while still on the announce table. It may or may not have been intentional, but it was a hint nonetheless.
    • Charles Manson Punk?
  • Gone Horribly Right: Nexus has a new, selfless leader that is ready to sacrifice everything to help them, what could possibly go wrong?
  • Groin Attack: Gets one courtesy of John Cena.
  • Hijacked by Ganon
  • Knight Templar
  • Selective Obliviousness: Punk was quick to decry John Cena for coming back after being fired to attack Nexus. He does have a point, but the problem is that The Nexus did the same thing on their debut.
  • Troll: "Are you stupid enough to think I would jump off this titantron?"
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: How he sees it anyway.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: His reason for targeting John Cena due to his use of Unnecessary Roughness repeatedly throughout his career: how Cena said he was going to leave then instead did a 10-Minute Retirement, his insulting everybody (particularly Vickie Guererro with uncalled-for fat jokes), and ending Batista's career after having already won the match.
    • Though Cena has a point - he didn't end Batista's career. Batista himself did that by retiring.
    • Which he wouldn't have if Cena didn't throw him through the stage, which was still not justified.
    • Batista threatened to retire if then-General Manager Bret Hart didn't grant him a rematch. Hart called his bluff, which lead to him to retire.
    • He also accused Cena of it for how he defeated Barrett. But in that case, he didn't have a point as he was defending someone who often had Nexus beat the stuffing out of people for no real reason, so it's less effective there.
    • Batista being mentioned before Barrett, though, is a misnomer. He mentioned Barrett first. Then Cena brought up Nexus trying to ruin his career. That is when Punk mentioned Cena's damage to Batista's career.
      • His ENTIRE basis for attacking Orton. Unlike Cena, As Punk best put, there is nothing defensible about Orton's actions and he deserves everything that happens to him.
      • Subverted by the fact that, in all likelihood, Orton's fully aware of this. He just doesn't give two shits.

David Otunga

  • Affably Evil: To John Cena.
  • Beard of Evil
  • Big Bad Wannabe: Otunga wants to be a tough guy, but whenever he tries to prove it ends up badly for him.
  • But Not Too Black
  • Butt-Monkey: After Darren got kicked out, Wade got a new fall guy in David Otunga.
  • The Chew Toy: For both Barrett and Cena.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: It all started with betraying John Cena in a Tag title match against ShoMiz (ironically that team would later win the Tag Team Titles and Otunga would be forced to surrender the belts to Gabriel and Slater). He has since gone on to also betray his NXT mentor R-Truth during NXT, showing tons of problems between them due to him not listening, and became The Starscream to Barrett. Also within Nexus, aside from his status to Barrett, he also was first to attack Darren Young upon him getting kicked out of Nexus, after having earlier complimented him for be willing to take on Cena.
    • And now has successfully gotten Nexus to finally get rid of Wade Barrett, adding yet another person to list of those he's betrayed. Only time will tell if/when he'll betray other members of Nexus or CM Punk.
    • During CM Punk's initiation into the New Nexus, before Otunga's turn, he was ALWAYS the first to attack his fellow teammates.
  • Demoted to Extra: Was much more important in NXT season one, now he's a glorified Red Shirt.
    • Subverted, though, as the Nexus storyline has gone on.
    • He's the only member who's been part The Nexus start to finish.
    • Now that the Nexus collapsed Otunga been settled with a lawyer gimmick and hardly ever wrestles.
    • As of now, he becomes a color commentator for SmackDown Live.
  • Evil Genius: To Wade
  • Fan Nickname: Starscream
  • Genius Bruiser: He's a Harvard Law grad
  • In the Hood
  • Jerkass
  • Miles Gloriosus
  • Red Baron: David "A-List" Otunga.
  • Smug Snake: Holds himself as most talented member in the group, though contributes little to nothing, avoids matches, and constantly looks for ways to gain more power within Nexus.
    • Tried to use Nexus without Barrett's permission while he was away to take over Smackdown while motivated by reminding everyone Nexus is not just about Barrett. Though the mouthpiece and clearly one behind it, he failed to actually do anything himself as leader and ended up being the one who lost 5 on 5 match for Nexus despite Team Smackdown falling apart.
      • At one point during that match, the rest of Nexus was getting their asses handed to them outside the ring. Meanwhile, Otunga was just standing on the apron waiting for a tag. Even Michael Cole was on his case about ineffective a leader Otunga was at that time.
  • The Starscream: He and Barrett don't exactly agree on how Nexus should be used.


Michael McGillicutty

Husky Harris

Mason Ryan


     The Corre 

Wade Barrett

  • Big Bad: Subverted, see Disc-One Final Boss
  • Break the Haughty: Once he got carried away in wanting the WWE Championship and torturing Cena to get it to the point of making the Nexus become all about him and forgetting all the aspects that made the group synonymous with its theme song, he ended up gradually but certainly losing the Nexus - to the point he found himself reaching to CM Punk, who showed a clear intention to replace him, for help in keeping them. Naturally this didn't end well for Mr. Barrett.
    • He seemed to have learned his lesson, however, as he ushered in the Corre, but claims he's not even taking a leadership position in that group. But then came the #1 contender battle royal on April 15th. He was the first Corre member to declare that the others would be helping him win that night, and just went on to become more monolithic to the point of alienating Jackson, who he had violently expelled rather than let walk away, then Slater and Gabriel as well. The latter two ended the Corre then and there.
  • Characterization Marches On: When he first appeared he was a cynical, greedy, charismatic British thug, he soon became a scheming, manipulative, brutal war leader.
  • Disc-One Final Boss
  • Evil Brit
  • Fan Nickname: Woi Barrah, a mangling of how he pronounces his name.
  • A Father to His Men: Seemed to genuinely care about the welfare of the other Nexus members, risking his own contract and title shot to secure contracts for them.
    • This only seems to apply if you are loyal to him and live up to his standards. Darren Young and Michael Tarver were obvious weak links, and were brutally excommunicated for their trouble. David Otunga thinks he's The Starscream and is forced to lay down and surrender the Tag titles to Gabriel and Slater.
    • Corrected but also subverted with the Corre. He's still the main speaker for the team, but he seems to have accepted that it's not all about him, even going out of his way to declare his fellow Corre members his equals now.
    • And then slipped right back into his old habits during the Corre's feud with Jackson. You'd think he'd know better.
  • Genius Bruiser: Has a degree in Marine Biology and spent his youth as a bare knuckle boxer.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: Feels completely justified doing what he did to get himself and the rest of the rookies contracts.
  • Insistent Terminology: A possible inversion. Insists on not being called the leader of The Corre, as it is an alliance of "four equals."
  • It's All About Me: His biggest flaw is that he just cannot give a shit about anyone but himself. He got kicked out of Nexus and the Corre was disbanded because of it.
  • Jumping Off the Slippery Slope: He's achieved all of his initial objectives, now he's just in it for the power.
  • The Kid with the Remote Control: Between Hell in a Cell and Survivor Series in 2010, John Cena had to obey Wade's orders to remain employed. This seemed at first like heaven for Barrett, Nexus, and smarks worldwide alike. But then it worked out terribly.
  • Meddling John Cena: Why he's not The WWE Champion.
  • Mr. Fanservice
  • Noble Demon: He's even apologized for attacking John Cena and Bret Hart.
  • Satisfied Street Rat: His first gimmick on NXT, he was a greedy, bare-knuckle brawler who grew up rough and was damn proud of it.
    • Also a bit of a William Regal Expy.
    • Shades of this character still exist. Particularly his greed. This eventually ended any chance of his successfully leading Nexus or Corre.
  • Still the Leader: Said this pretty much verbatim after CM Punk took over The Nexus. Punk would respond to this by costing him a shot at The Miz's WWE championship—and ripping Barrett's Nexus armband off as an exclamation point.
  • Tall, Dark, and Snarky
  • Xanatos Gambit: Positioned John Cena as special guest referee in his title match against Randy Orton. If Barrett leaves as champion, Cena's freed from Nexus. If Orton does, Cena is fired.
    • However, Cena Out-Gambitted him. Orton won and Cena was fired, but that merely allowed Cena to assault Nexus on a weekly basis. On top of that, Nexus already turned the security against them and when it looked like Cena was cornered by Barrett's trap, Cena revealed he had an army of RAW superstars who hated Nexus as much as him ready to help him out. Then Cena proceeded to set up a The Dog Bites Back moment by tricking Barrett into pretty much saying he valued his own safety over that of Nexus, causing them to abandon him to Cena and force Barrett to hire Cena back.

Justin Gabriel

Heath Slater

     Former Members 

John Cena (Nexus Story Arc)

  • Arch-Enemy: The Nexus & CM Punk
  • Boring Invincible Hero: For the first part of the arc. Barrett found ways to tame him.
  • Determinator
  • "Do It Yourself" Theme Tune
  • The Dog Bites Back
  • Easily Distracted Referee: Was supposed to be reffing a match between CM Punk and Wade Barrett - at one time he stopped, got out of the ring, and started signing autographs for fans.
  • Mr. Fanservice
  • Five Moves of Doom.
  • Heroic BSoD: After his Nexus defection.
  • Nice Cap
  • Out-Gambitted: He does this to Barrett by letting Orton win, getting himself fired and allowing him to assault Nexus any time he wants to, having the other RAW superstars and even the security team behind him as they also hate Nexus. He then tricks Barrett into a position were he must rehire Cena or be booted from Nexus.
  • Precision F-Strike
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: After being fired, he goes on one of these and beats the stuffing out of nearly all of Nexus singlehandedly. Arguably, the entire Chairs Match with Barrett would qualify.
  • 10-Minute Retirement: In the autumn of 2010. It lasted a little longer than ten minutes, and he was never really gone per se since he still lingered in the crowd and jumped members of Nexus backstage at random, but it still applied.
  • The Rival: Had his in Chris Jericho and Edge.
  • Token Good Teammate
  • Unnecessary Roughness: Probably as far as PG-WWE goes, his Attitude Adjustment to Justin Gabriel onto (and almost through) the windshield of a car on the 11-29-10 episode of RAW probably counts as this.
    • If that doesn't, the dropping 23 chairs on Wade Barrett following their chair match at the 2010 TLC pay per view definitely does - Especially when you factor in that they hanging from the rafters as part of the set. note 
    • It seems the beat down he gave to Darren Young early on in the original Nexus arc has been forgotten. The poor kid was thrown into one of the ring posts, an given the STF, THE RIGHT WAY (elbow bent so that it pulls much harder on the upper body). It was the most intense most had seen Cena in a while and even the smark Cena haters enjoyed it.
  • Your Princess Is in Another Castle!: So you defeated Wade Barrett and took out the Nexus for a week? Good job! Oh wait, with Wade Barrett gone, CM Punk (aka the guy who is about as opportunistic as Edge is and is as equally Ax-Crazy) has taken over. Oh, Crap!.

Darren Young

Michael Tarver

Skip Sheffield

  • Bald of Evil
  • Breakup Breakout: Aside from possibly Barrett, Ryback has had the most successful post-Nexus career of its iconic seven-man lineup.
  • Cool Hat: Before joining Nexus.
  • Dumb Muscle: He was a major goofball in NXT Season 1, focusing more on getting his Catch Phrases over than winning matches.
  • Game-Breaking Injury: His ankle injury that put him out of action for nearly 18 months.
  • Lightning Bruiser: The man is incredibly fast, despite his size.
  • Put on a Bus: Suffered an ankle injury in August of 2010, but was still referred to as a member of Nexus.
    • The Bus Came Back: Returned to action in April of 2012 with an entirely different gimmick on Smackdown while still being acknowledged as part of NXT season 1 with an ankle injury that temporarily sidelined him.
  • You Look Familiar: His real name is Ryan Reeves. If that sounds familiar, it's because he was a former contestant on the $1,000,000 Tough Enough.

Ezekiel Jackson

Daniel Bryan

  • Arch-Enemy: After he got kicked out, it was The Miz for this portion of his career.
  • Breakup Breakout: He was the first to be kicked out and the first to win a title at all, let alone winning a world title.
    • He then went on to become one of the most over wrestlers in the entire company, his reactions dwarfing those that John Cena ever got. He's the most over since "Stone Cold" Steve Austin and The Rock and became the Undisputed WWE Championship at WrestleMania XXX over Randy Orton and the returning Batista. Looking back at it now, getting kicked out of the Nexus was probably the best thing to happen to Bryan's career.
  • Put on a Bus/Real Life Writes the Plot: Bryan was fired for choking out Justin Roberts with his tie. They brought him back a couple months later as the last member of Team WWE against Nexus during SummerSlam.
  • Token Good Teammate: Kicked out for showing "remorse" for the infamous NXT riot on RAW. See Real Life Writes the Plot for the real reason. Barrett would later state that he was kicked out for being seen as a threat to Barrett's leadership.
  • What Could Have Been: One has to wonder how the dynamic of Nexus would have been if he hadn't gotten fired.


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