Randy Orton, a wrestler for World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE), has found himself across the internet, using his finishing move on unsuspecting people. None of the videos are real, rather a collection of photo shopped mishaps involving various falling people being caught in “The Viper’s” move. Videos have added a new element to the string of vines that brings even more joy to those that follow this wrestler’s currently trending proclivities. Still in the midst of a lengthy WWE career, the wrestler has also embraced this string of viral hits, prodding similar moments in real life to his Twitter followers.
The vines that began this Orton craze revolve around his finishing move, the RKO, and his in-ring ability to surprise the crowd with its execution. Within the confines of a match, this move is what would usually precede a victory for “The Legend Killer” and is achieved by Orton taking a quick hold of the opponent’s head from the front and dropping both bodies to the mat, the opponent becoming stunned by the sudden impact. With the use of his agility, he can often seem to bring this move out in the blink of an eye, bringing about the popular “outta nowhere,” exclamation from wrestling announcers such as Jim Ross and Michael Cole that accompany many video compilations of the vines.
Orton is often portrayed in these creations as taking out skaters, bikers and risk takers that find themselves falling sometimes large distances into a superimposed finishing move. Everyday people are not the only victims, however, as a national anthem singer, various soccer stars and skiers have been victims. Even Superman has appeared in possibly the be-all and end-all of the vines, leaving an exploded crater in the move’s wake. The videos, with added audio of the announcers as well as other images of Orton himself setting up the move, often also portray him awkwardly running and celebrating after a successful strike.
Given this string of recent popularity, some of the analysts closest to the industry predict that this springboard will create a “face” turn, which is a wrestling term for becoming a fan favorite, and rekindle his popularity. This may indeed be the plan moving forward for WWE as Orton was attacked on their weekly Monday Night Raw event by a heel that was supposed to be on The Viper’s side. On his twitter account, he took this craze by the reigns, pointing out “that RKO outta nowhere” from this week’s Raw show to his many followers.
Orton is one of the longest tenured superstars on the WWE roster with over a decade of service, much of that in main event storylines. Running with fellow main event stars Triple H, Ric Flair and Dave Bautista in the Evolution stable, he was given a leg up in 2003 with the experience of others helping him along. He will have a chance to add to his extensive championship count this Sunday in the WWE’s event Hell in a Cell when he goes against company icon John Cena for number one contender status and a future title match against current champion, Brock Lesnar.
By Myles Gann