The term "canceled" has become a prevalent one in our modern society, referring to when a famous person has done something wrong (usually a sexual misconduct or racially offensive manner) and the social media world decides they are done supporting said person. It's all a part of what has been dubbed the "woke" culture and WWE decided to jump on board this past Tuesday on NXT 2.0 with the debut of a new personality for former CZW World Heavyweight Champion Joe Gacy, having him portray a very woke character who made note of his white male privilege and microaggressions. And of course, it went over about as well as any time WWE has created a sociopolitical character.
While any use of a character on NXT that comments on current world issues would be controversial, Joe Gacy was clearly presented as an annoying heel, one who was beaten in a match against babyface Cameron Grimes immediately after a promo where Gacy gave a self-mocking portrayal of a modern liberal man.
The new Joe Gacy character wasted no time in catching the attention of the political media, but it seems to have been the more right-leaning outlets, such as FOX News and The New York Post that really took a liking to the character and were highlighting him as WWE mocking the left, which is pretty obvious to anyone who watched it.
Even though WWE's intentions with the "woke" Joe Gacy character were pretty clear, it now appears that they weren't prepared for the attention it received and they have now seemingly canceled the character by removing any videos featuring him from YouTube and any mention of him from their social media accounts and websites.
This is obviously an unusual move for the company, as he just debuted on TV under a week ago, but while the WWE of the past would welcome any and all controversy as eyes on the product, the current WWE is a very cautious and media sensitive brand that doesn't want any heat from any group, be it political or otherwise. The hope now is that they simply find something new for the talented Joe Gacy instead of releasing or burying him off of TV for simply doing what he was told to and doing it very well.
And before anyone chimes in with the standard "yeah, but…" bullshit of "they would never do this with a mocking conservative character", let me ask you, have you seen Zeb Colter around on WWE TV lately? Are The Godwinns in the hunt for the tag titles at the moment? Surely J.B.L. is still doing segments where he's chasing away immigrants at the border, right?
We'll have to see what's next for Joe Gacy in NXT because now it seems like the brand itself, he's in for a revamp.