Love him or don’t, fans react big-time when Cody Rhodes enters any All Elite Wrestling arena. It’s a rare spot the performer finds himself within the landscape of the company. It’s also one the “American Nightmare” is completely comfortable being in. The star even has a shirt that reads babyface, heel, winner.
“Where I stand is wherever the audience wants me to stand. I don’t judge pro wrestling audiences,” he said during an interview for The Wrestling Inc. Daily promoting the new season of Go-Big Show. “I don’t like wrestlers who do judge. I’m not too smart for the wrestling audience. They aren’t too smart for me.”
The son of the late “American Dream” Dusty Rhodes and brother of Dustin Rhodes. He certainly grew up with some of the best ring psychologists in the business. Through his own years in the business, Cody has seen not only the best wrestling happen when leading the fans but also leading fans to what they want in the end.
“It’s kind of like the chicken and the egg situation. What’s happening right now is jarring in a really beautiful way for me,” he added. “Looking back three years ago when I felt like a freakin’ wrestling messiah in terms of these reactions and the old school babyface I was presented as. Now when we have these situations where I’m not everyone’s favorite, and there is a large part of the audience that want to see me lose. That makes for really compelling television.”
There are times when Rhode gets a big pop while others when a fan will throw his weight lifting belt back in the ring rather than keeping it as a memento. He just enjoys taking people on a ride.
“As far as wrestling is concerned with what is happening, I’m really am the luckiest man on this roster. I’ve done a lot of hard work and am quick to let people know that. But a lot of this has to do with fate and timing. Yeah, I want to see where it goes. We’re not going to take people on the route they’ve already gone on. I can tell you that. I do want to see where this goes.”
His wife and fellow AEW executive Brandi Rhodes can also receive a polarizing reaction. In the past, she has spoken about being happy as the villain in the past. There are many who respect her drive documented on the couple’s reality series Rhodes to the Top. Brandi was determined to get back in ring shape after having her first child. A goal accomplished in recent weeks. Cody couldn’t be prouder.
“In reality TV you see parts that are scripted or framed up. One of the things we really wanted to do with Rhodes to the Top was keeping it as authentic as possible,” Cody Rhodes said. “Included is the moment where she and I are in the basement gym we have, and I told her she needs to come back on Dark and how she should come back.
“And all of that manifested itself in this run she is currently on. You’ll hear so many women who go through pregnancy. They’ll talk about the bounceback but also the mental bounceback. The further commitment to it.”
Watching from the back, Rhodes described Brandi’s segment working the mic against American Top Team’s Dan Lambert a “home run.” This home run in terms of being a polarizing segment.
“A segment people talk about, especially with episodic TV. I have endless respect and admiration. I’m very proud of Brandi,” Cody Rhodes adds. “I know she wants [daughter] Liberty to think she is the coolest of the cool when it comes to wrestlers. I think she does.”
Catch AEW Dynamite on Wednesdays at 8/7c on TBS and AEW Rampage on Thursdays at 10/9c on TNT
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