Former WWE Superstar Matt Hardy is renowned for his diverse and compelling in-ring personas, ranging from his early days teaming up with his brother Jeff Hardy, to his later character developments like "Version One Matt" and "Big Money Matt." Among these, the "Broken Matt Hardy" persona has emerged as a standout favorite among wrestling fans.
In a recent episode of his podcast, "The Extreme Life of Matt Hardy," Hardy delves into the behind-the-scenes reactions to his "Broken" gimmick, including the initial skepticism and eventual acceptance by WWE Chairman Vince McMahon.
Hardy's "Broken" character, known for its eccentricity and cult-like following, was a surprise hit in the wrestling world. He described the persona as "influential," a testament to its enduring popularity. Hardy's return to WWE in 2017 opened the door for discussions about incorporating the "Broken" character into the WWE narrative.
He recalls that Triple H, WWE's Executive Vice President of Global Talent Strategy & Development, was receptive to the idea. Triple H suggested a potential storyline involving a return to the Hardy Boyz' original WWE persona, followed by a transition into the "Broken" character.
McMahon's Initial Skepticism
However, Vince McMahon initially dismissed the concept. McMahon preferred to focus on the Hardy Boyz's legacy, perhaps underestimating the appeal of the "Broken" persona. Despite this, the character would eventually make its WWE debut under a slightly altered moniker, "Woken Matt Hardy." This iteration of Hardy partnered with Bray Wyatt to form "The Eaters of Worlds." A crucial element of Hardy's character was his "Delete" catchphrase, which resonated powerfully with the WWE audience.
According to Hardy, the overwhelming fan response to the catchphrase played a significant role in McMahon's decision to give the "Broken" character a more prominent role in WWE storylines. Matt Hardy's revelation about the evolution of his "Broken" character and McMahon's change of heart underscores the dynamic nature of professional wrestling, where fan engagement can significantly influence creative directions.
This story not only highlights Hardy's adaptability as a performer but also sheds light on the collaborative process of character development in the WWE. As Matt Hardy continues to captivate audiences with his unique blend of charisma and in-ring talent, his journey with the "Broken" gimmick remains a fascinating chapter in his storied career.