At the end of 2019, PCO was on top of the world, as he won the ROH World Championship in December. But a few months later, a global pandemic turned the wrestling industry on its head. Still, early in 2021, “The French Frankenstein” is optimistic that on the other side of this ongoing situation, the best is yet to come for his character and his career.
PCO recently spoke with WrestleZone writer Colin Tessier and shared his thoughts about his successes in the past and his hopes for the future. First, he discussed his inimitable “French Frankenstein” persona and made it clear why he believes the character is a rich well that’s full of possibilities.
“I think we only have touched the point of the iceberg, as far as developing the character, and I think that character could be darker, it could scarier, it could be just different without changing like my attitude with the fans,” said PCO. The former Ring of Honor World Champion explained that he wants the “French Frankenstein” character to come across as a clear alter ego so that he could still interact with the fans and maintain his activity in the media.
PCO then revealed that he has plenty of ideas about the potential growth of the character and its presentation, beyond the monster that fans have come to know and love.
“I would like to really reinforce my entrances, but also ideas for exiting the ring, for different finishes,” said PCO. “I’d really like to emphasize more on the fact that the ‘French Frankenstein’ runs with the electricity, and that it could be harmful for others, but not for himself. So I think yeah, I think there’s so many directions that we could go with this character, and we haven’t tapped into the full potential yet.”
PCO emphasized that whereas the character has often been presented as a fun monster, he wants to see it taken in a darker direction that could strike fear into the hearts of fans and wrestlers alike. When asked, he acknowledged that his contract with Ring of Honor is up on December 1, 2021. He discussed how he plans on using the time until that date to hopefully implement some of the changes he has in mind, assuming the wrestling world returns to some semblance of normalcy.
“I keep working on the character, I keep on pushing ideas, and I’ve got ideas, and I’ve got different goals,” said PCO. “I’m just very confident for what the character can offer and also not just what the character can offer but something very new, and something very different in a way. Very different in a way that we haven’t seen. Like I said, we haven’t tapped into the full potential. We’ve done great things…but I think, as a character, I gotta be meaner, and I gotta be darker, and it’s gonna be scary, so that’s what I’m aiming for when everything goes back to normal.”
As for his contract situation, PCO stated that he’s happy with his situation. Everyone will have to wait and see how his negotiations with Ring of Honor unfold later this year, likely in the summertime.
“I haven’t even looked at options yet,” said PCO. “I’m very happy with where I’m at right now and what I’m doing.”
Regardless, PCO should have a lot of leverage in his contract negotiations based on his track record and his renowned character. Though the COVID-19 pandemic has made it difficult to rack up more accomplishments lately, the NWA Crockett Cup winner looked at the remarkable year he had in 2019, when he reached new heights in his esteemed wrestling career. PCO described why that year might be the best gauge of his popularity and overall success.
“I just think I had a tremendous year last year, being World Six-Man Tag Champ, World Tag Champ, World Heavyweight Champ with Ring of Honor, and then the NWA World Tag Team, the Crockett Cup winner, and think that this is a lot of success, it’s pretty huge,” said PCO. “And I think the value of PCO is probably all there, you know, because we’ve done some great TV tapings since then, but there’s no fans and it’s just a different environment, so I guess we have to just go to the year before [in 2019].”
Like countless other wrestlers, PCO’s career has been affected by the pandemic. He reflected on the implications of the unforeseen situation in his tenure with Ring of Honor. The former Villain Enterprises powerhouse explained some of the challenging aspects of the pandemic. PCO acknowledged the downsides of the lack of a live crowd and a regular schedule of performing on the road. But he also pointed to some beneficial elements, like the chance to essentially use this period of time as a reset.
“We can look at it like, because I don’t think we were [about] to change anything about the character, so I think it could be a good reset to change a few things,” said PCO. “After the pandemic, I don’t think, I can work on different things during the pandemic, but I think the interest, if we look at ratings of all pro wrestling shows right now, I think the ratings are not what they used to be. So I think it’s time to work on things and some stuff that maybe once everything restarts…I think that should be perfect timing to go with something big, to come out with something very different, very big.
“That’s how I envision [it.] so in a way, not that it’s positive, but there’s nothing we can do about the pandemic, so [we] might as well use it in a positive way.”
While PCO is facing an uncertain future, both due to his contract situation and the global pandemic, he offered sage perspective.
“You just control what you can control, you work as hard as you can work, and be as ready as you can be ready, and everything will take its own course, you know,” said PCO.
The full interview is available here: