Asuka Changes Up Her In-Ring Look On WWE Raw

Asuka's week-long teases of a character change are starting to materialize.

On the 12/12 "WWE Raw" in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Asuka wrestled without facepaint for the first time in her seven years across all WWE programming and wasn't her usual vivacious self in her pre-match entrance. Although Asuka did dance her way to the ring, she had a rather intense look upon removing her mask, and just gazed at the crowd while waiting on her opponent – Rhea Ripley. Asuka, known to play to the crowd during her entrances and matches, was clearly not herself Monday and even sprayed Dominik Mysterio with her green mist towards the closing stages of her loss to Ripley.



Following her loss, a dejected Asuka put her head down and stayed in the ring, prompting the announcers to acknowledge her recent trend of losses.

Fans on social media believe Asuka removing her facepaint could be a sign of her gradually morphing into Kana, the old murder clown character from her days in the Japanese indie circuit. In recent weeks, Asuka has hinted at a return to her roots with a series of photos and videos of Kana on social media. The veteran wrestler has not portrayed a villainous character in WWE since her time teaming up with Kairi Sane as one-half of The Kabuki Warriors. She has remained a babyface since winning the Money in the Bank briefcase in 2020, following which Becky Lynch relinquished her "Raw" Women's Championship and declared Asuka the champion.


Asuka began teasing a character change following the 12/5 "Raw" where she came up short in a triple-threat match against Bayley and Ripley.