The Women’s Division has gone through many changes over the past few months and one of the biggest came back at WrestleMania in April 2016 when WWE decided to rebrand their females into Superstars and no longer use the term Divas on WWE TV.
Since the Brand Split it seems the Raw roster has focused on the feud between Charlotte and Sasha Banks and allowed the duo to break records and create history on the Red Brand while the SmackDown Live women have paved their own path and become stars in their own right.
Despite the fact that these women have become some of the best female wrestlers in WWE history over the past few years, they are not only running away from their past, but they are attempting to run away from the past of the females division.
WWE women don’t have the best history in the company and it is interesting to see the company finally using the women as actual stars and allowing them the same opportunities as the men. WWE are on the right side of history, but that doesn’t mean that they don’t have anything to hide.
The following list will look at all the things that WWE wants you to forget about the females who are part of the current Women’s Division.
18. The Divas Championship
This is the perfect place to start. Many fans consider the Divas Championship to be one of the most forgettable parts of the Women’s Division. The downfall started when WWE decided to retire a belt that had defined legacies for belt with a butterfly.
Since then the females have tried to fight for recognition but have always been overlooked. The likes of Kaitlyn and AJ Lee came through the ranks as stand-out stars but were never fully able to get out of that bracket. Finally retiring the Divas Championship at WrestleMania last year allowed the girl to move forward and begin a new era that would be worth remembering. By all accounts, there is no reason to believe that the Divas Championship will ever return.
17. Nia Jax Used To Be Much Smaller
She is now the most dominant force in the WWE Women’s Division, but Nia Jax hasn’t always been this way. Many of the WWE Universe thought that she was signed because of her size and the fact that she was related to Roman Reigns and The Rock, but it seems that that wasn’t the case.
Nia Jax used to be a plus-size model in her younger days and is an advocate for women when it comes to body and weight issues. Nia has gained a lot of weight over the past few years which has actually fit into her role as a dominant presence on the roster. It seems that she is something that WWE has manufactured to fit into this current position along the way.
16. Where Is Summer Rae?
There have been reports that Summer Rae has been out injured for the last few months, but there seems to be something else enough keeping Summer Rae off WWE TV for this long. Summer hasn’t been seen on her respective roster since the Brand Split and it seems that there are no plans to bring her in either.
Summer was an integral part of the Women’s Division that broke those glass ceilings down in NXT and proved that they were worthy of changing the face of the Women’s Division. The fact that they have allowed her to slip away without any recognition is unfair to her and her fans. Whether or not Summer Rae is used once again on live TV remains to be seen.
15. Emmalina Was Once Arrested For Shoplifting
Even though the arrest is the main point of this entry, the follow-up to it would be the thing that WWE would want to forget the most. At this point, Emmalina was on the main roster, but she wasn’t one of the main talents. So when WWE heard that Emma had been arrested for shoplifting, they immediately announced her release from the company.
Merely minutes later the company retracted the release and allowed her to stay. Was it a case of WWE misunderstanding what she had been arrested for, or was it the fact that WWE was afraid of their image? Either way, it was a bad day for Emma and it is something about her that the WWE Universe will never forget. (The arrest was over a phone case.)
14. The term ‘Diva’
Of course, this had to make the list at some point. Almost every female wrestler hated being referred to as a WWE Diva. Not only did it define the females in the Women’s Division, but it also defined the division as a whole and that was a bad message to send out.
The term Diva is something that is used in pop culture if someone is over-reacting or acting up, not exactly the prime word to be using when you are trying to allow your women to build a revolution. It was a hard time for the Women’s Division and a time WWE would rather forget and move forward from. Now that the women are all considered to be Superstars, it shows that WWE is taking the proper steps forward.
13. Natalya Deserves Better
Natalya is a former Divas Champion and the only female to ever graduate from the Hart Dungeon. She is one of the best technical wrestlers in WWE, not only in the females division and WWE refuse to push her to where she deserves to be.
Natalya has talent and she has the ability but she doesn’t seem to be able to convince WWE to allow her to go after the championship and turn heads at the top of the division. Nattie is now classed as a veteran and WWE would rather have her training the next generation to surpass her than put her on WWE TV and show what she can really do, which is an absolute travesty. But such is life in WWE.
12. The failed Divas Revolution of 2015
This can go on the pile with the Divas Championship and the term ‘Diva’ because once again the ‘Divas Revolution’ was another thing that WWE do not want to bring up again. The women of NXT intervened and they made the female’s division more competitive and much more watchable until the creative team booked them into a corner.
The females were put into groups of three and forced to endure endless tag team matches that made no sense and then championship matches that only ever had one outcome. It was a long few months for the females and something that was ended much too late. On top of that, the stand out star, and the one the fans all wanted to see, Sasha Banks, was constantly left out.
11. Did WWE Attempt To Fire Paige Because Of Her Choice Of Boyfriend?
This is definitely not something that WWE will ever admit to, but the rumour is already out there. When WWE found out that Paige and Alberto Del Rio were a couple, it seems that they used what little power they possessed to try and split them up.
Of course, this is a complete breach of Paige and Del Rio’s rights since their private lives have absolutely nothing to do with WWE. It could also have played a major factor in Paige’s recent behaviour when it comes to WWE and the reported rumours that she didn’t actually want to return. The entire Paige situation of 2016 is something WWE will definitely want to forget moving forward. Especially since Paige is set to return at some piint this year.
10. Smith Hart’s Rant About The Women’s Division
Smith Hart has been a very vocal spectator in 2016. From joining in with Bret Hart in calling out Seth Rollins for being a dangerous wrestler and trainer, to then deciding to add his opinion on the current women’s roster. (The Harts are always very vocal about the current state of wrestling.)
Smith didn’t even hold his tongue when it came to his own niece. The WWE Universe were both shocked and surprised by the fact that Hart said that Natalya didn’t actually have a gimmick and that was the reason she wasn’t really being used (although he does have a point). Not the thing you would really expect your uncle to say to the entire world. Those comments must have made Christmas dinner slightly awkward.
9. Lana’s Recent Roles
Lana has her very own entry on this list for a reason. She isn’t’ adding to the image of the division very well since WWE’s current storyline has her portraying a woman who is ready to cheat on a man she has only been married to for a few months just to make a point.
This storyline felt very WWE in the 1990s and it hasn’t done very much for Lana or Rusev or even Enzo Amore because it has made Enzo look like more of a bad guy than Rusev. Luckily Lana is appearing at NXT events and she’s training down at the Performance Centre so that hopefully she can add much more than this to her resume (Lana made her in-ring debut at WrestleMania to a less-than-stellar performance). Lana was also paired with Dolph Ziggler for a short period, which flopped as a storyline.
8. Mick Foley’s Leaked Twitter Messages
As the General Manager of Monday Night Raw, Mick Foley needs to become much smarter when it comes to Social Media. The former WWE Superstar has recently come off Twitter because of an incident that Mick and WWE will definitely want to forget.
He decided to talk to a fan in the Direct Messages part of the site. The fan asked about the inclusion of other women in the angles that only Charlotte and Sasha Banks have bene involved with at this point. Mick Foley went on to tell the fan that Summer Rae wasn’t good enough to be put into these kinds of matches. Something a General Manager probably shouldn’t be thinking let alone saying to some fan on Twitter. No more private conversations for Mick.
7. Charlotte Was Once Arrested
She may well be the face of the current Raw Women’s Division and she may also be considered to be one of the best female wrestlers that WWE have ever employed, but Charlotte herself also has a past.
Charlotte has had two marriages end in divorce and was also once arrested for her part in a brawl along with her father and one of her ex-husbands (The Flairs have a temper, which is also evident when you look into Ric’s past). Hopefully, this kind of behaviour is behind the current Women’s Champion now that she has become a role model for many young children watching her on TV. Charlotte appears to be over all her past problems as she settles into a nice role in WWE.
6. Total Divas
Over the past three years, since Total Divas has been on the E! Network, many fans have commented on how much of a role it plays in the Women’s Division and the fact that sometimes it can hold a rivalry back (storylines form the show have even made their way onto WWE TV).
It is hard to believe many of the current rivalries when the women are then shown as friends on the TV show. Right now Renee Young and Maryse are being portrayed as enemies, but they appear together and talk a lot on the show, which makes it slightly hard to believe. It’s like you can’t watch Total Divas and WWE. You have to watch one or the other. WWE would probably think it best that you forget about anything that takes place on the show when switching over to Raw or SmackDown.
5. On Screen Relationships
It seems that 2016 was the year that WWE brought back the on-screen relationship. Maryse and The Miz were put back together, Lana and Rusev got married and declared it to the world, and Renee Young and Dean Ambrose’s relationship was finally revealed on WWE TV.
The problem is that none of these women are actually wrestlers. They are just being used as the eye candy and the mouthpieces for their men. While there is nothing wrong with using women in this way if it adds to the product, there should always be the added factor that these women could step in the ring if they needed to. It would add another dimension to many of these rivalries. Eventually, the Renee/Dean relationship will be placed aside and WWE will expect you to forget that it was ever mentioned on SmackDown Live.
4. Reid Flair
I feel bad even brining up Reid Flair’s involvement in the feud between Charlotte and Paige. It was a cheap way of bringing something personal into the match up between them and it was something that even Ric Flair himself thought was insensitive.
Paige brought up Reid’s death and the way he died as part of the contract signing for a match with Charlotte. Then it was never raised again and Charlotte won. This provoked an emotion in the then DivasChampion that WWE was hoping for, but it shouldn’t be used in that way again. The WWE Universe found it just as insensitive and WWE could easily have made a point without it. Of course, the company decided to go down this road and use Reid’s death as a way to advance a storyline.
3. WWE Took All The Female Talent From NXT
Any fan who watches NXT would already know this, but the problem here is the fact that NXT wasn’t ready to lose the likes of Carmella, Alexa Bliss, Nia Jax, Charlotte, Sasha Banks, Bayley, and Becky Lynch. The departure of these women left the female’s division threadbare and made it much harder for them to create women’s matches moving forward.
WWE had to bring in Mickie James to face Asuka in Toronto because they don’t have a lot of women left to use that are ready to step up. There probably should have been a better way to slowly allow the women to be promoted rather than them all leaving at the same time. This of course leaves room for new women to step up in NXT but their rise has bene seemingly slow at this point.
2. Eva Marie
Eva Marie is one of the most hated women in WWE, and she hasn’t been on the roster for the past few months. She was suspended before SummerSlam this year and it seems that WWE hasn’t yet found a way for her to make her return. She has been off filming with Nicholas Cage but has to make a return to WWE at some point.
Eva Marie has to be one of the most forgetful women in WWE currently and many fans would be happy of she didn’t return at all. She doesn’t add anything to the product and now it seems that she can’t stay within WWE’s rules either. If for some reason, Eva Marie doesn’t return to WWE, then the company would rather you forget her all together.
1. Paige’s Suspension
Paige’s career in WWE in 2016 will definitely be one that both parties will want to forget. Not only was it the year that Paige was suspended on her Birthday after she broke WWE’s Wellness Policy for the first time, she was then suspended for a second time for the same thing 30 days later. It then looked like she was ready to quit the company.
Paige went on to appear at another promotion and actually propose to her boyfriend in their ring. She then had neck surgery that wasn’t actually sanctioned by WWE. It was a mess of a year for the former Divas Champion, who for the first time in her WWE career, failed to win gold in 2016 as well. Hopefully, 2017 is better for her.