A Former WWE Writer Talked About Creating Jason Albert’s Disastrous ‘Lord Tensai’ Character

Former WWE writer Kevin Eck has been spilling all sorts of backstage beans lately. He was the guy who revealed that Justin Bieber almost main-evented SummerSlam 2014, and now he’s dishing dirt on Jason Albert’s ill-fated run as Lord Tensai. Yeah, not quite as juicy as “Justin Bieber was going to beat Bray Wyatt,” but Tensai was one of WWE’s most regrettable brain farts. A peek at how he was created should be educational.

Lord Tensai wasn’t the only gimmick under consideration for Albert when he returned to WWE in 2012.

“When Matt Bloom [Albert’s real name] returned to WWE a few years ago, the intention was to make him a main-event-level monster heel, and the creative team was assigned to come up with a character for him. Among the pitches for Bloom were for him to be a masked mauler, an ex-prisoner in an orange jumpsuit and an American samurai. “

Eck had his own notions about how Albert should be packaged, and he had an interesting idea for a manager.

“I was of the belief that the best option was to give him a cool-looking mask with black ring attire that showed the tattoos on his upper body but covered his ample midsection. The more we hide his identity, I thought, the less chance the crowd will be chanting ‘Albert’ at him. I also thought he needed a mouthpiece, and my suggestion was to hire James Mitchell as his manager. The samurai character was my least favorite. Of course, that’s the one we went with. And instead of a manager, he was given a follower who never spoke English named Sakamoto.”

With his fantastic gimmick in place, the plan was to have Tensai main-event SummerSlam 2012 with Cena, which John was apparently excited for.

“Cena was all for doing a program with him, telling us that he welcomed the opportunity to get in the ring with ‘a big man who can work’, but I told some of my colleagues that I didn’t believe there was any chance that proposed SummerSlam match would take place.”

And it didn’t take place. In fact, Tensai didn’t even make the SummerSlam card. Just a few months later, he began his transformation into the Hip Hop Hippo. Could any gimmick have got Albert over in WWE in 2012? Personally, I think “it’s Albert, but he’s been to Japan and is now tough” without all the green mist, robes and other lily-gilding might have worked, but I suppose we’ll never know.

via The Eck Factor