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YMMV / Zack Ryder

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  • Badass Decay:
    • In late 2011, he started to get a single's push, even having an arc of him trying to win the United States Championship. 2012? He's lost the title and becoming The Chew Toy and Butt-Monkey in the Cena/Kane feud. The only way in which he looked good was that he demostrated to be able to absorb a whole lot of damage. To put it in perspective, that time he was The Chew Toy? Kane had to attack him for a single month before Ryder was put on a stretcher. That's right a whole month.
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    • Averted on WrestleMania 32, where he came away as the Intercontinental Champion, having to face 6 other superstars, including the likes of Kevin Owens, Sami Zayn, and Dolph Ziggler. Against all odds, he was the one who came away with the title, standing victorious atop that ladder. Subverted as he lost the championship the very next day.
  • Base-Breaking Character: It seems that either you love Zack Ryder and want to see him on television in a prominent spot, or you wonder what the heck the big deal is with him, and whether everyone who likes him has lost their minds. There is no middle ground.
  • Breakup Breakout: With his former tag partner, Curt Hawkins. Ryder's gone from jobber to United States Champion and top fan favorite in less than a year. The high point of Hawkins' post-Edge career was getting squashed by Brodus Clay in Clay's "Funkasaurus" debut. Even applied after Ryder was demoted to extra again at the beginning of 2012, as by June 2014 Hawkins was released.
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  • Ensemble Darkhorse: He was more over than John Cena in 2011 despite him only being a midcarder.
  • Fashion-Victim Villain: His outfit is hilarious.
  • Fridge Brilliance: For his various title wins, why does it usually take him multiple wins (especially on a character that's suppose to be rising quickly up the ranks)? It's to show off/reinforce his newfound Determinator/Took a Level in Badass nature and how Zack's success is not the result of the company but him simply doing his hardest to succeed as the Plucky Underdog!
  • Funny Moments:
    • Just pick one from his YouTube channel.
    • His brief performance of Rebecca Black's "Friday" at WrestleMania XXVII.
  • Heartwarming in Hindsight: Back at WrestleMania X, Razor Ramon wins the Intercontinental Championship, and even took a picture with a young Ryder. Fast-forward 22 years later, at WrestleMania 32, Ryder finally wins the Intercontinental Championship, and even had took another picture with Razor Ramon, with Ryder as champion.
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  • Hilarious in Hindsight: The entire time Zack Ryder was the "Assistant to the General Manager" of SmackDown, he branded himself (much to Teddy Long's annoyance) as the "Assistant General Manager" (i.e. Teddy's number two and presumptive successor). On 7-13-2012, he actually was the General Manager of SmackDown for a day.
  • Moment of Awesome:
    • Retaining the WWE Internet Championship in Australia. Hell, just being allowed to DEFEND that title is amazing in itself, considering he created it. Yes it was a house show, but it counts!
    • Getting to kick Jerkass Michael Cole's ass after Triple H booted Cole out of the broadcast booth!
    • On the 9/19/11 edition of RAW, Ryder (accompanied by freaking Hugh Jackman, no less) gets an awesome win against Dolph Ziggler.
    • Being the General Manager of Friday Night Smackdown - or, rather, Friday Night ZackDown. For the entire show, ZackDown got his own custom logo (with his name in his font and the "Long Island Iced-Z" logo as a backdrop.)
    • He is victorious in the grandest stage of them all, holding the Intercontinental Championship at WrestleMania!
  • Older Than They Think: Most people think that his current gimmick started when he first appeared on ECW in 2009. However, the first time he portrayed this character was on John Morrison and The Miz's online show The Dirt Sheet months before the 2009 draft, with Curt Hawkins acting as a Straight Man. Justified in that the gimmick wasn't fully developed during those Dirt Sheet segments. He didn't have the new theme or the spiked short hair yet.
  • Tear Jerker:
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot:
    • Went into the match where Jack Swagger defeated him for the WWE United States Championship on the January 16, 2012 Raw with taped ribs, lasting a little over 2 minutes. The opportunity to elevate him from goof to tough guy was right there, and they didn't take it.
    • Ryder was an incredible underdog going into WrestleMania 32, and he came away with the Intercontinental Championship. The very next day on Raw, the Dallas crowd was totally behind Ryder, chanting "You deserve it!" And yet... 24 hours after his historic moment, he loses the championship to the Miz, then loses his rematch the following SmackDown. After all the emotion, he doesn't even keep the title for a day, effectively making the biggest upset in WrestleMania 32 all for nothing.note 
  • Tough Act to Follow: Z! True Long Island Story is clearly this, as its follow up, Last ReZort, only lasted two episodes and gained no traction, and though Z! True Comeback Story did better, it wasn't as strong as ZTLIS. For that matter, it was this to the rest of the roster, as various WWE wrestlers attempted to launch their own web series, but most of their attempts failed or were shut down by management, and it wasn't until Up Up Down Down that we got a successful one.
  • What an Idiot!: Just a few weeks after Eve revealed she was just using Zack to get more television time, she kisses him and ends up having him wrapped around her fingers all over again.
  • The Woobie: Oh dear god yes with the whole Kane, Cena and Eve situation.

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