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Fightin' Fanboys

Fightin' Fangirls: WWE Diva AJ Lee

The new GM of RAW talks about her trip to the Marvel offices, her plans for SummerSlam, and more!

AJ Lee picks up Thor's hammer (photo by Judy Stephens)

By Arune Singh with Ben Morse

In Avengers Vs. X-Men, the biggest comic book event of the year, the powerful Phoenix Force arrived on Earth and imbued five X-Men with unstoppable power. Now, slowly corrupted by this force, the “Phoenix Five” have shifted their focus from helping the world to self-interest.

Over in the WWE Universe, fans of Sports Entertainment may be witnessing a similar phenomenon, as WWE Diva AJ Lee recently accepted the position of General Manager of Monday Night Raw and has proceeded to shake up the landscape in the name of “good.”

On the eve of the historic 25th edition of the SummerSlam pay per view event, Marvel.com spoke with AJ about her new role, if she’s really going crazy with power and why she’s not unlike Doctor Doom!

Marvel.com: We have to start off by congratulating on your new job as GM of Monday Night RAW. You’re pretty damn powerful now!

AJ: [Laughter] Thank you! A lot has changed since last time [we spoke].

Marvel.com: You were proposing to Daniel Bryan and CM Punk a couple months ago. Now you’ve become the Captain America of WWE, leading the WWE Universe. Do you think that’s a fair comparison?

AJ: Oh gosh. That’s kind of a lofty comparison. [Laughter] But I think since being in charge is being able to make the right decisions and what’s best for everyone, whether or not it’s what’s best for you personally, it might work. I’m trying to be impartial and yet still strong, giving everyone what they want.

Doctor Doom

Marvel.com: Well, to be honest, when you’re around your ex-fiancée Daniel Bryan I could I swear you’re a bit more like Doctor Doom.

AJ: You know, I think I’m being as fair as possible, but I do understand where the darkness can kind of creep in there sometimes and you have a grudge. So I think if you asked Daniel Bryan he would say I’m more Doctor Doom than Captain America, but to me I’m just being as fair and unbiased as possible.

Marvel.com: Speaking of Marvel characters, we all know you’re an X-Men fan and with the return of the Phoenix in Avengers Vs. X-Men, some of the X-Men have been powered up. This started well for them but they’re slowly being corrupted by the power—do you see this happening to you as RAW General Manager?

AJ: You know, I think a lot of people expect that or would understand if that’s something that would happen, but right now it’s only been a couple weeks and I don’t think I’m power hungry. I don’t think I’m taking advantage of it yet. Or ever will be. Hopefully I can be as fair as I can for as long as I can, but it is a big responsibility and sometimes when things get a little intense and you have all that power, who knows, it might go to someone’s head.

Marvel.com: Yeah. You might go a little Dark Phoenix. That’s what we’re worried about.

AJ: [Laughter]

Marvel.com: On a somewhat related note, last time you spoke with us you mentioned that you and Daniel were like the Jean Grey and Cyclops of WWE.

Jean Grey

AJ: Awww.

Marvel.com: Now that you’ve got all the power and gone Phoenix and Daniel’s sort of become a jerk, do you think the comparison still holds, or would you compare yourselves to a different couple?

AJ: [Laughter] I guess it kind of still holds if you think about it. But now I’m kind of nervous to see who’s going to be Emma Frost. I don’t know. [Laughter] I’m keeping my eyes on Eve. I’m watching her.

Marvel.com: Wait, so if Daniel is Cyclops, would you say CM Punk is Wolverine?

AJ: Isn’t he? I mean, I think everyone would say that. Also he’s got the beard going on too now…

Marvel.com: And the crazy hair. It works now.

AJ: Yeah. I think he’s slowly getting there. That’s a really good comparison actually.

Marvel.com: Earlier this year you visited the Marvel offices in New York City and went behind the scenes with our editorial team. What were your favorite moments?

AJ: It was just really fun to see all the detail that goes into every aspect—the art, the coloring, the lettering—and sit down with [Marvel editor] Bill Rosemann. He showed me a lot of little tricks, such as how to make speech balloons fit properly and how to fit in the credits. I went to film school for about six months and I took some animation classes, but it’s always so mind blowing to me because I could never draw like that. So just to see the bare bones, you know, beginning of everything and how it ends up is—gosh, you guys are so talented.

AJ Lee visits Marvel (photo by Judy Stephens)

Marvel.com: Do you think you learned any lessons from seeing how the Mighty Marvel machine works that you can apply to the way you’re running RAW?

AJ: I hope so. You guys seem to have a good unit going on, a well-oiled machine.  Everyone seems to be working together and there’s a positive vibe and sometimes at RAW it’s not quite as smooth.  But hopefully during my tenure I can get everyone working on the same page, which is why I’m bringing Daniel Bryan and Kane back together. They need to get along; they need to learn how to put on a good match. Just trying to get everything to work smoothly.

Marvel.com: As GM of RAW, you’ve added excitement with bold decisions like the Triple Threat match at SummerSlam this Sunday between CM Punk, John Cena and the Big Show for the WWE Championship. But if were able to make things exciting by drafting talent to RAW from the Marvel Universe, who would you choose?

AJ: Well, I think it would be really interesting to actually see some of the people who would be comparable to each other from the WWE Universe and the Marvel Universe pitted against each other. CM Punk vs. Wolverine, for example. It’d be interesting to see who survives that.

Marvel.com: You do have a soft spot for Jean Grey…

AJ: I would just bring around Jean Grey to just hang out with me backstage and run things with me.

Marvel.com: That’s a good answer. She could read everyone’s minds.

AJ: Yeah, exactly. So she’d be really useful for a couple of weeks and then I’d get afraid of her [laughs].

Marvel.com: Going back to SummerSlam, are you pulling for anyone? It seems like only John Cena hasn’t knocked you over or been a jerk to you.

RAW GM AJ Lee (photo courtesy of WWE)

AJ: Right now, as General Manager, yes, I put CM Punk in a Triple Threat, and yes, he thinks it was because I’m angry at him saying no to my proposal, but I was trying to give the fans what they want to see, and I think they all deserve to be in the match. So right now I’m impartial. Let the best man win.

Any other matches you’re looking forward to at SummerSlam?

AJ: I’m really excited to see the matches that I’ve made; not only the Triple Threat, but also Kane vs. Daniel Bryan. I also have to mention Chris Jericho vs. Dolph Ziggler, which might just steal the show and be the match of the night.

And I think everyone wants to see Brock Lesnar vs. Triple H. That is going to be brutal because it’s become so personal, especially with Paul Heyman’s involvement. I think everyone in the back is really looking forward to that battle.

Learn more about AJ Lee and Monday Night RAW at WWE.com, and be sure to catch SummerSlam this Sunday on pay-per-view!

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      Now I can see why my brother keeps calling me AJ and comparing me to her, I basically grew up the same way she did with comics and wrestling.