People may not remember it, but when Alexa Bliss made her NXT debut, she had a much different character than the "twisted bliss" character that led to an alliance with The Fiend. Bliss had a glittery fairy gimmick back in 2014 before evolving into a bratty heel, and she talked about changing her character on Alison Is Your New Best Friend.
"It was actually very nerve-wracking to change my character when I first started with WWE because they always tell us to 'be your personality'. So, I've always been a big Disney fan. I have always been a big Tinkerbell fan. Any whimsical Disney cartoon - that is me. So, I was like, 'Okay cool, I'm just going to pretty much be a pixie person.' I came out and I blew glitter, wore tutus, and I was having a blast. It was literally my personality turned up by a thousand," said Bliss.
"Then, the writing team in NXT was like, 'Yeah, we can't relate to that. We can't write for that and we need to find something else.' They told me I was going to be a bad guy and I panicked because I was just like, 'Oh no! What do I do?' Because if someone basically tells you this is your personality and this is who you are, that's not going to work. You've got to change that.
"I kind of just started acting like every girl I went to high school with, and that's kind of how the persona started and blossomed into the character that it is today."
After about a year as a pixie cheerleader, Bliss transformed into an annoying heel while in NXT. She detailed how that switch happened and how much time she had to transform from one character to another.
"Maybe a week - I had about a week to figure it out. That's how everything works in WWE, everything is flying by the moment and very fast. We have shows weekly, so sometimes it changes minute by minute and you have to be adaptable and ready to change everything," revealed Bliss.
"I remember this specific day because I had blonde hair with blue on the bottom of my hair, and I walk into work-- no, this change actually happened overnight because we had an NXT TakeOver - which is our versions of pay-per-views in NXT - which, at that time, was our developmental program before it became a third touring brand. So, I was in NXT, which was our developmental program - and this was a Wednesday night. I had turned into a bad guy, it was at the end of the show, and it was 30 seconds. I pushed someone off the top rope, and that shows I just turned into a bad guy. That ended around 10 pm.
"Now, we had to be at the venue the next day at 11 am. I walk in and they're like, 'Where's your red hair?' And I asked, 'Sorry, my what? No one told me to have red hair.' And they're like, 'Well, you have three and a half hours to figure out how to get red hair because the good guy has blue hair and the bad guy needs to have red hair.'
"I had to call my extension lady, and I was like, 'Hey, I need red hair in the next three hours.' So she comes to the venue and my hair was all blonde with brand new extensions. I just got them put in and they were very expensive, and I was so heartbroken. She had to chop the blue completely off and dip-dye red into my hair. On top of that, not only did I have to look different, I had to act differently. It was like, 'What do I do?' and this was maybe a 14-hour turnaround."
Bliss mentioned that her original character was similar to her personality and then WWE said they needed to change that character. Some people would get insulted and think they need to change their personality as well, and Bliss was asked if she took it personally when asked for the change.
"No, I never took any of it personally because I know it's a show. It's entertainment, and what I thought works sometimes doesn't. Sometimes what's crazy is a lot of times you circle back to what your original idea was," stated Bliss. It's just so funny that everything comes full circle. It just wasn't that it wasn't relatable, it just wasn't relatable for that time. As a new character, there was no dimension to it because I was just happy all the time.
"There's nowhere to go with that. There's no conflict because that's where our business is. It's antagonist, protagonist, conflict, and resolution. When someone's constantly happy all the time, throwing glitter around and wearing a tutu, there's no cares in the world. You can't write about that. It was completely understandable, and I'm so glad that that happened because if I were to still to do that, I would have not succeeded at all.
"So I'm very lucky they said they couldn't write for that and couldn't relate to it. Everything happens for a reason I believe, and that worked out for the very best."
Bliss joined WWE during what's referred to as 'The Reality Era' with the influence of social media. Her character may have been much different had she come up during The Attitude Era, as WWE utilized their female talent differently.
Bliss was asked about WWE being PG compared to back when it was PG-13 during The Attitude Era.
"The storylines and language definitely affected it. We don't use curse words nearly as much was used in the Attitude Era. We don't have intergender matches anymore; we have mixed matches. So intergender matches are guy versus girl, but now we have guys and girls teaming up together and you're seen as equal," said Bliss. "I actually had a tag team partner in the Mixed Match Challenge. He is seven-foot-tall [Braun Strowman], and having a five-foot-tall person being with a seven-foot-tall person was very entertaining and a lot of fun.
"The only difference now is it's definitely more family-friendly and kid-friendly now opposed to the Attitude Era."
After being a pixie cheerleader and then a bratty heel, Bliss is now onto her third character in her alliance with The Fiend. She talked about what it's like to work with someone who devotes so much time and effort into making his character unique.
"I've been having so much fun in my recent time with WWE. I've always wanted to be working with a character alongside Bray because he is so good at what he does. He puts so much background research into what he does, and he is the true epitome of what a WWE Superstar should be. He is compelling, he is always evolving, changing, and being something new and fresh," stated Bliss.
"To be able to work with someone like that just always gets your creative juices going. I always feel you're only as good as the person you're working with, and if you're working with someone who has a different approach, if you can adapt to that approach, it just makes you a better performer in the ring and out of the ring. It's been a lot of fun."
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Alison Is Your New Best Friend with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Mehdy Labriny contributed to this article.