Newly signed AEW wrestler Malakai Black (aka Tommy End, fka Aleister Black) made his surprise debut last week on AEW Dynamite. Black recently hosted a stream on his wife’s, Zelina Vega, Twitch channel. Black talked about the vignette that he had posted to his Instagram account last week and discussed the fan reactions to it. He noted that his new gimmick is actually what he had originally wanted his WWE character to be. However, he said that Triple H had a different vision for the character.
“It’s funny. The reason I did this is because this is actually how I wanted the WWE version to be,” shared Black. “When I started, I wanted to come in as a heel and Hunter [Triple H] wanted me face. If anyone has ever seen any work of me on the independents, you would know that the gimmick I was portraying in the WWE was an amplified version of what I did on the indies. That’s why they wanted me. But I wanted to be a heel because I was coming off a heel run on the independents. But then Hunter had this idea of making me face, a stoic face character.
“So, I had to switch the character from being this obnoxious, sadistic, possessed by a demon guy, to the same possessed by a demon/devil guy, but then having remorse, and I have to find the middle ground with that. And I had to find the middle ground in that and how would someone who is [like] that [could] find remorse and show remorse by being stoic and having a problem expressing his emotions.”
During the stream a fan noted that it was nice to see Josiah Williams in Black’s short film. Black agreed and said that Williams did a great job. He then went on to say that both he and Williams are working on a documentary but didn’t get into the specifics. Black also noted that he has a lot of upcoming projects in the next three months, but that he cannot disclose the details.
Black also addressed how far in advance he knew that he would be making his AEW debut. He noted that it was not a long-term plan and that it was put together at the last minute. Black spoke more on the entire process earlier in the stream.
“Not long,” said Black. “It was a very last-minute thing.”
Black later discussed how he came about picking the new ‘Malakai Black’ moniker. He noted he was flipping through the Bible and found a name with a double-meaning that he thought fit his character.
“I was looking for an Old Testament name and I found one that had a double-meaning,” said Black. “I was a big fan of Children of the Corn when I grew up and I felt that, with the character, [the name] kind of fit.”
Black then talked about how much he enjoys the creative freedom that AEW has. He says he is now in a place that allows him to freely use his creative mind and that it is a refreshing feeling. He goes on to discuss past issues and experiences he had while working with WWE creative.
“It feels really good,” admitted Black. “It feels really good that I’m in a place now where my creative mind can be utilized versus stopped, and controlled, and being presented in things that I know are not gonna work. Because, no offense, I knew a lot of the stuff wasn’t going to work, and I said that to them as well back in the day. Lo and behold it didn’t work.”