As crazy as it may sound now, considering everything she's accomplished since, Trish Stratus first retired from WWE 17 years ago, when she hung up her proverbial boots in a match against long-time friend and then champion Lita to earn her seventh reign with the strap.
Since that fateful match at Unforgiven in Toronto, Ontario, Canada back in 2006, Stratus has wrestled 14 matches, been inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame, and was most recently drafted onto RAW to continue her one-woman mission to make Becky Lynch's life as miserable as possible.
Sitting down with Ryan Satin on Out Of Character to discuss her current run as one of the top heels on RAW, Stratus noted that for her, it isn't all about being a good guy or bad guy, but more so how she connects with the audience, with the WWE Universe being unlike any crowd she's ever performed for.
“Is it entertaining? Is it fun? Is it truth? Is it something like oh, who else can cut this promo? You know what I mean? That’s kind of unique. So that’s the lore of it for me, right? And I just want to go out there and entertain,” Trish Stratus said. “I’m a performer first and foremost, and that’s what I want to do is I want to entertain. I want to go out there and do my performances. When I retired, what I took away like dabbling in other projects, whether it was movies or television shows, producing or doing commercials, whatever it was, all these different mediums, the experience that I got from WWE, first of all, was surprising.
“It was how well it translated into these different mediums, right? And the takeaway was that I love producing moments. I love being a storyteller, and that’s where we are in the ring. And it’s everything, even as a judge now on Canada’s Got Talent. I see that, like when I first got the call to be a judge, I was like, ‘Well, I’m not a dancer. I’m not a singer. Why are they asking me to be a Judge? I’m a wrestler,’ but then as I’m watching it, I’m like, no, I’m a performer, and these guys are performers. I saw the parallels, right? It’s a story, there’s the beginning, there’s an end, and there’s a story arc, and you’re in this moment, and so that’s what I love about it. So coming back is just doing this, and being in the moment is everything.”
After spending almost five years away from the ring as a performer, with her last match coming at SummerSlam 2019 against Charlotte Flair, it's clear Stratus is enjoying her current run in WWE, especially the fans who make working for the company unlike nothing else in the world.
Trish Stratus comments on her reactions from the WWE Universe.
Continuing down the rabbit hole of performing as a member of the WWE Universe, Stratus was asked about the crowd reactions she's earned from arenas around the country, which went from very positive around WrestleMania 39 to fervent boos since she turned on Becky Lynch following their loss to Liv Morgan and Raquel Rodriguez in April. In the opinion of the Hall of Famer, there's nothing like performing in front of a WWE crowd, as they react like no other.
“It has been cool to like apply it to different mediums. Ultimately, yeah, coming back and having that instant gratification having the love from the crowd, there’s nothing like it,” Trish Stratus admitted. “And honestly, only a handful of people in this world can experience that or can do it. So yeah, I feel very lucky this many years later to go back and be able to do it again. And also like the experience that I’ve gained from the other mediums that I’ve been in or the life experience or whatever it is, or even to be sitting back as a fan.
“There was a point where I always said when I had a few injuries, what I loved about it was sitting back and watching the product again as a fan and then coming back into the mix and taking that like what made me excited, what evoked an emotion from me watching at home, I wanted to do that and just be aware of that cognizant of that knowing I can do that for the crowd and it sort of made me grow as a performer.
“So having said that; that’s the same sort of thing like this. How many years, I don’t know, 15 plus years, having that experience, life experience, and other experiences, be it acting in movies and things like that, taking that now and then bringing that to Trish Stratus, the performer, has been cool to apply for sure.”
Fortunately for Stratus, for however long she continues to work as an active member of the WWE Universe, it's safe to say she will get her intended response from crowds of all shapes and sizes, as the “Thank you Trish” tour has far exceeded expectations.