Chaos erupted last Monday night as ‘Retribution’ wreaked havoc throughout the August 3rd edition of WWE’s flagship show. Earlier that day, it was announced on WWE.com that a new faction would be making their presence known on Monday Night Raw, while fans eagerly anticipated the reveal, lights flickered and technical difficulties plagued the show as the night progressed.
Security footage of the group was finally unveiled at the tail end of Raw, showcasing the members of WWE’s newly formed stable throwing Molotov cocktails at Performance Center property, engulfing a generator up in flames while the members watched in awe. Fast forward later into the week to the August 7th edition of SmackDown, Retribution once again erupted onto the scene, laying waste to whatever (and whoever) crossed their path. Plexiglass destroyed and defaced, crew and cameramen assaulted and lastly, one of the members even took a chainsaw to the ropes, destroying the ring. Retribution has certainly made a name for themselves within such a short amount of time, yet we’re unaware of who the members of the group are. Here, we are thoroughly analyzing chatter amongst the WWE Universe and taking a look at the top potential contenders that make up this new faction.
The former NXT Champion has not been up to much after suffering a brutal loss to Karrion Kross at NXT TakeOver: In Your House. ‘Blackheart’ has recently made his frustrations known, after voicing his displeasure within his position at the black and yellow brand. After finding much success in being the top heel in NXT a few short years ago, ultimately going down after getting surgery from a neck injury, Tomasso came back red hot, but has recently lost quite a bit of steam and hasn’t been the same since. With the former NXT Champion’s social media pages going dark, it wouldn’t be much of a surprise should we see Tomasso revealed as a member of Retribution, chaos, after all, is familiar territory to the NXT Superstar.
Another member who recently took a loss to Karrion Kross, Dominik Dijakovic has heavily teased a moved to the main roster in recent weeks. It wasn’t too long ago where he had the WWE Universe speculating after he uploaded a picture of the US Title, leading many to assume that he’d be gunning towards ending Apollo Crews’ championship reign. Alas, nothing came up if it though, and just like Tomasso Ciampa, has completely deleted any post on their Twitter and Instagram pages”, with “like a Phoenix” and “rising from the ashes” written on both of his respective profiles. Could this be an elaborate hoax by the NXT Superstar, or is this a sign of things to come?
Not much has been seen from this NXT superstar, having not been seen on tv or competed in matches in well over a year. As we saw this past Friday night on SmackDown, a clearer look was given at some of the members of Retribution, albeit still unknown. Many fans have gone online and speculated that one of the five members (two of which seem to be female, which we’ll get to) could well, in fact, be Vanessa Bourne. Screenshots of Friday’s attack show off a woman with long curly brown hair, similar in nature to the NXT Superstar, as well as the build. Having not had much to do in WWE’s third brand, could she be a possible member looking to make a name for herself along with her mystery peers?
Having not much else to do on NXT, the last of which we saw of Chelsea Green was when the young up and comer fired Robert Stone on the May 27th edition of WWE’s third brand. Similar to Vanessa Bourne, both women have been left floundering on WWE programming, and from much speculation from the WWE Universe, it seems as though the Canadian born wrestler could be the other female member of Retribution. Having a diverse group made up of both men and women attempting to overthrow the status quo with anarchy definitely breaks the mould as opposed to the atypical all-male group, so perhaps this may be a fresh air not only for future factions but for both Chelsea Green and Vanessa Bourne’s careers as well.
For months, WWE teased us with vignettes of a hacker, who was constantly interrupting broadcasts with subliminal messages and left many to guess where the angle would go. Unfortunately, it almost seems as though the hacker dilemma has been shelved, or at least that’s what we think. The former 205 Live competitor had been long rumoured to be the man behind the hacker vignettes, as lots of the symbolic imagery used were similar in nature to Mustafa Ali’s ‘light‘. The Superstar has since returned to WWE programming, aligning himself with Cedrick Alexander and Ricochet, that doesn’t mean however that this negates him from being a potential member, perhaps even being the leader of Retribution.
Should it be the case that Mustafa Ali is, in fact, the leader of Retribution, or even revealed to be the hacker that was plaguing WWE TV not too long ago, this may, in fact, be one of the rare instances where WWE has executed a long term story to perfection. Whatever the case may be, the controversy surrounding the group has definitely stirred the pot, making for some must-see television. We must wait and see where this story leads, hopefully not being abandoned too prematurely, but feel free to leave your thoughts and opinions on who could be behind the masks in Retribution.