When John Cena first debuted on the WWE main roster, he was pretty bland. But over time Cena developed an edgy rapper character who started out as a heel, but quickly became a fan favorite.
Cena got really good at tearing his opponents down with his words, but it just so happens that most of the words he would speak were unfit for a PG show.
Things were different back then. Now WWE programming is much more family friendly, and Cena has often been criticized for being the face of the PG Era.
During a recent chat with Screen Rant, John Cena talked about why The Attitude Era wouldn’t work today, and he also opened up about what motivated him to change his character.
“Coming in in 2002 you’re still riding the coattails of the Attitude Era. It’s 18-35-year-old males, it’s very visceral, the entertainment is very extreme. Fast forward to 2004, 2005, 2006, more families are showing up. and I don’t feel comfortable saying the things I was saying on the microphone because I got to look at a little kid and at that point, I’m supposed to be the good guy?”
“That’s not how a good guy is so I use the opportunity of the platform of The Marine – because the movie did reach a bunch of people – to genuinely, subtly, begin to change my character into more of a P.G. environment because those are the tools I’m dealt. I can do a butt chug scene if you put an ‘R’ on the movie but when you put a TV-PG on the show and you’re out there doing stuff that makes your audience feel uncomfortable, your career longevity is going to be nothing.”
John Cena insists that he will always be part of WWE in some way, shape, or form, but fans who are hoping to see the Doctor of Thuganomics return should probably refrain from holding their breath.