Matt Hardy debuted in AEW with his Broken Matt character just as the wrestling industry entered the pandemic era. Though Hardy performed the character for months in AEW, ultimately he believed it didn't work and switched gears, becoming Big Money Matt Hardy instead. Hardy was interviewed by New Jersey newspaper The Asbury Park Press ahead of AEW Revolution. Here's what he had to say about his character transformation.
"Broken Matt Hardy is a very audience-friendly character," said Hardy. "It needs a crowd, it needs an audience, and it just was not in the cards to be Broken Matt Hardy … because his debut was in the first-ever empty arena era, pandemic-era show, the first empty arena show that AEW had. Broken Matt Hardy is … very theatrical, and it doesn't translate as well to the current AEW audience that sits at home and watches (on television) because I've realized that this is a much younger audience. It's a much more sports-centric-type audience."
"I tip my hat to (AEW president and CEO) Tony Khan," said Hardy. "He allowed me to try kind of switching characters and see how people reacted to it," said the 46-year-old Hardy. "I think if we had been in arenas full of people it would have been different, but considering we're now playing to the television audience, it was better for me to zone in and focus on one thing. And I think being Big Money Matt and being a heel, considering how I'm an older guy here and it's such a younger demo(graphic), I think that's the way for me to go. So I'm very happy with the groove that I'm currently in."
Hardy will compete at AEW Revolution in a Big Money Match with Hangman Page. The winner of the match will get the earnings of the loser for the first quarter of 2021. Page is one of AEW's brightest young stars who many believe will be world champion one day. By playing his new heel character, Hardy gets to play a role in Page's rise to the top. Read the full interview with Hardy in the Asbury Park Press.