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You can't see me!

John Felix Anthony Cena (born April 23, 1977) is a professional wrestler. The 21st century equivalent of Hulk Hogan, John Cena is one of the biggest, if not the biggest, superstar in World Wrestling Entertainment, with a nearly decade-long career that's seen him rise through the ranks of the company to become one of its biggest success stories, holding numerous titles and main eventing several WrestleManias in the process. He is currently competing on the Raw brand.

Additionally, Cena has also dabbled in rap music (including releasing a full album, You Can't See Me) and has starred in The Marine, 12 Rounds, Legendary, and The Reunion, films produced by WWE's film division.

You can read about his career in both wrestling and acting over at Wikipedia.

Tropes associated with John Cena include:

  • Aint No Rule: See Combat Pragmatist. Ain't no rule that says you can't duct-tape your opponent's legs behind the ringpost to ensure they can't make it to their feet in a Last Man Standing match.
  • All-American Face: (Part of) Cena's current persona.
  • Arch Enemy: Even when they're both faces, it's clear Cena and Randy Orton can't stand each other. Same can be said about The Rock.
  • Artistic License Biology: Homeboy once claimed Lita gave him gonorrhea by shaking his hand. And that was in 2005. Once the actual Cena-Edge feud got going in '06, he got even worse about this.
    • That was kind of the point. He was saying that Lita is so disease-ridden that you can catch something just by being in the same room. He was deliberately trying to shame Lita by deliberately trying to go Beyond the Impossible.
  • Beat Them At Their Own Game: Attempted to do this to The Rock at Wrestlemania 28, by trying to use the People's Elbow to finish Rock off, only for it to backfire & cost Cena the match. Humorously, this was something Rock himself did somewhat frequently in his career.
  • Berserk Button: Good God, don't ever try to harm Zack Ryder in front of Cena. Just ask Jack Swagger.
    • Nor should you compare him to the New York Yankees in his hometown.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: He's the guy that everyone likes, or the guy who will beat you up mercilessly either with his fists or with his words.
  • Big Brother Mentor: Seems to be this to Zack Ryder...which makes sense if you think about it. Much like Ryder, Cena started out as something of a comic relief heel - until he gained such a fan following that the WWE turned him face and put the United States Championship on him (the only difference is that for Zack it was either get noticed or be fired). The smarks in the IWC certainly hope that's where the comparisons stop.
  • Brass Balls: Cena has had a couple of these moments, but a recent one that really stands out is walking to the middle of the ring and slapping Brock Lesnar right across the face.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: During every entrance, Cena says something straight into the camera.
  • Call Back: The 4/23/12 RAW with Edge returning to pretty much give Cena a verbal smackdown for letting Brock Lesnar push him around. Edge made a thinly veiled suggestion that Cena goes back to his old self. At the contract signing for his match with Brock at the end of the show. Cena appeared to be wearing the same attire as he always did. Except that, instead of the 'dog tag' necklace, he was wearing a chain...
  • Catch Phrase:
    • "You Can't See Me!"
    • "Hustle Loyalty Respect", though Cena curiously doesn't say it on a frequent basis like the above two phrases.
  • Celebrity Resemblance:
    • Marky Mark!
    • And he dressed as Vanilla Ice for Halloween, which kicked off the Dr. of Thuganomics gimmick.
  • Chained by Fashion: During his Dr. of Thuganomics gimmick.
  • Charles Atlas Superpower: By his own admission, he's not the greatest wrestler. He's strong enough to carry multiple wrestlers on his shoulders.
  • Charlie Brown From Outta Town: What his "Mexican cousin" Juan Cena alias looked to be before it was canned.
  • The Chew Toy: 2012 has so far not been a good year for Cena. He was terrorized by Kane for the first part of the year, being forced to helplessly watch his best but Zack Ryder be made an example of, then he lost his Wrestlemania match with The Rock due to him trying to beat Rocky at his own game when he could of won the match otherwise, then the next night on RAW, when calling out The Rock to congratulate him for his victory he was laid out by a returning Brock Lesnar.
    • And after his hellacious match with Lesnar, the next night he comes out with his arm in a cast, saying his arm was severely strained but not broken. Laurinitis comes out, saying he'll announce who Cena's opponent is at the next PPV. Cue Lord Tensai's music. When Tensai and his mook surround Cena, Laurinitis brains him from behind with the microphone. He announces that he'll be his opponent and then the three proceed to slaughter him, including wrapping his injured arm around a post and slamming it between a chair and the steps.
  • Combat Pragmatist:
    • He beat Batista in a Last Man Standing match at Extreme Rules 2010 with duct tape. He also beat Umaga at Royal Rumble 2007 with a broken ring rope.
    • An even cleverer finish would be back when he had first won the WWE Championship and was defending against JBL in a Wrestlemania "I Quit" rematch: playing on JBL's obvious cowardice, he threatened to viciously maim him with a pipe in order to goad JBL into quitting.
  • Corrupt the Cutie:
    • His feud against Kane, where the Big Red Monster was determined to make the pure-hearted Cena "embrace the hate". After multiple attacks on Zack Ryder, including a chokeslam that ended up sending Ryder through the stage and to the hospital with a broken back, he seemed to had succeeded. Cena nearly gave Swagger a one man Con-chair-to with steel steps and the 1/30/12 beat down he gave to Kane is showing that there is something that's happening to him.
    • Note that during his beatdown of Kane that he seemed unnaturally happy, along with the somewhat random "We're gonna party up in here!" during it.
    • On the 2/13/12 RAW it seemed like he was just about to clock Ryder in the face After Ryder saw John accidentally kissing his girlfriend Eve due to John trying to save her from Kane.
    • Given that Cena decidedly beat Kane in an Ambulance Match at Elimination Chamber, perhaps he may have finally risen above the hatred.
  • Crowd Song: "Let's go, Cena. Cena Sucks" It's worked quite well when he was feuding with Kane.
  • Cruel Twist Ending: His match with John Laurinaitis at Over The Limit 2012.
  • Determinator:
    • As part of his gimmick, but also arguably just the man himself. When John Cena suffers a major injury, expect him to come back from it in half the amount of time it would take anyone else.
    • This trope is the reason Cena is kayfabe on the top of the food chain. He's admitted he isn't the best wrestler or the strongest but he never, ever quits while he's still conscious.
  • Dye Hard: Went blond for a while as The Prototype.
  • Enemy Mine: He's had several short reigns as a Tag champion, and most of them have been like this? His runs with The Miz and David Otunga played it pretty straight. (Neither reign lasted more than a day, and coincidentally, he lost both titles to the same team - also from The Nexus.)
    • Subverted with his team-up with Batista. The two obviously couldn't stand each other and their inability to work together cost them the titles a week after winning them. His reign with Shawn Michaels was a rocky one, and while it was the longest one he had as a tag champ, with 63 days, the two was set to compete for the WWE Championship at Wrestlemania. Cena knew that Shawn had a tendency to kick the people he was teaming/allying with, in the face. They made it past Wrestlemania, with Cena retaining his WWE Championship, then, well, kick to the face.
    • Also subverted with The Rock. They teamed against Awesome Truth and won...but the match ended up becoming a junk-measuring contest between the two, and ended with Cena catching a Rock Bottom.
  • Exact Words: How he kept Barrett from winning the Championship.
    • To elaborate: Barrett told Cena, who would guest-ref the former's WWE Championship match against Randy Orton that if he were to lose, Cena would be fired. Barrett won... through Cena disqualifying Orton, which kept the gold in the Viper's hands.
  • Extreme Doormat: To Wade Barrett, unwillingly.
  • Finishing Move: The Attitude Adjustment (formerly the "F-U", a shot at the "F-5" finishing maneuver of Brock Lesnar); the STF (formerly the "STF-U"). The Protobomb as The Prototype.
  • First-Name Basis: With Batista, Cena always called him Dave.
  • Five Moves of Doom: Currently: Shoulder tackle x 2, [1] Five Knuckle Shuffle, Attitude Adjustment.
    • Most of the time, the STF is added as a sixth move.
  • Flung Clothing: Does this often however when...
    • He tossed his shirt into the crowd at ECW One Night Stand 2006. The crowd promptly threw it back.
    • This happened again on Raw's August 22 2011 episode, when he had a match against CM Punk, twice.
  • Friend to All Children: Cena has granted over 200+ wishes for the Make-A-Wish Foundation, more than any other celebrity to date.
  • Game-Breaking Injury: His torn pec muscle in 2007, and his neck injury in 2008.
  • Genre Savvy:
    • Cena occasionally shows more 'plot awareness' than many wrestlers. For example, he knew that "It's Umaga's night off" meant Umaga was planning some sort of ambush, and (when tagging up with Shawn Michaels), fully expected Michaels to turn on him because "That's what he does".
    • He used his own Popularity Power to force Vince McMahon to give CM Punk his title shot at Money In The Bank.
    • This comes again during Ryder's 2nd chance at getting a US Title match when he's in a hopeless bout against Mark Henry. It's made No-DQ and No Countout so Ryder can't garner a easy victory. However, it also means John has no qualms about coming to the ring, giving Mark an AA, and putting Ryder on top for the three count and the title shot.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar:
    • While they changed the names of his two finishers to be more family friendly (or in the STF's case just calling it by its real name), his theatrical fistdrop, the Five Knuckle Shuffle, is still named after a euphemism for masturbation.
    • Can often get crap past the radar in promos as well. The last time he cut a rapping promo (against The Rock) included (among the use of the word 'ass') the line "...Dwayne ain't got no Johnson." [2] well as a reference to fellatio. Yeah.
    • He called Dolph Ziggler "Mitch Cumsteen" once. That's not exactly PG.
      • Another time he tried to replace his nickname "Show"off with, Jerk. Dolph immediately stops him before he could complete it.
    • Calling Eve Torres[3] a "hoeski"? Yeah, not PG at all.
      • He would also allude to her having an STD. Definitely not PG.
    • March. 12. 2012. Holy crap. Cena in his old school gimmick and attire didn't even bother trying to sneak past the radar. He mowed the damn thing down with a tank, sitting on top with both fingers flying.
  • Heel Face Turn: Cena's first heel run as Dr. of Thuganomics saw him cutting raps on everyone and insulting them in a very humorous manner, which lead the fans to cheer for more and more, which lead to his Face turn, and eventually becoming the face of the company.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: Invoked during his recent feud with Kane.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: How he lost to The Rock at Wrestlemania 28 - Cena had Rock set-up for the 5-Knuckle Shuffle, but instead decided to beat him with the People's Elbow... Only for Rock to get-up & hit Cena with a Rock Bottom as he comes off the ropes for the second time.
  • Honor Before Reason: Cena is often like this when it comes to the integrity of the WWE Championship. He refused to help Wade Barret cheat to win it during the Nexus angle and prevented Vince McMahon from re-enacting the Montreal Screwjob in his Money in the Bank match against CM Punk, even though the former led to his being fired (for a while) and the latter almost did too.
  • Hot-Blooded: Some of Cena's (better) promos fall into this territory.
  • How Much More Can He Take?: Ever since he turned face, any time Cena is in a gimmick match this will invariably happen to him.
  • Humble Hero: Does not like any excessive promotion of his charity work. He might be the celebrity most involved with Make-A-Wish, but to him it's not by any means for publicity.
  • Insult Backfire:
    • During the Viewers' Choice Raw match with CM Punk (prior to The Nexus's debut riot), fans started up a "You can't wrestle!" chant. Cena promptly performed a slick series of chain wrestling reversals that silenced the audience. This also happened during the infamous One Night Stand match. The Mutants kept yelling "YOU CAN'T WRESTLE", before Cena performed a sequence of wrestling holds and submissions, at which point they started chanting "SAME OLD SHIT!"... until Cena jumped from the top rope to RVD outside the ring. The ECW Mutants shot back with "YOU STILL SUCK!".
    • Happened again to CM Punk when he aired a promo from the Rock making fun of Cena for his Broken Base, Punk himself doing the same thing. See Lampshade Hanging below and you can probably figure out how Cena responded.
    • This happened recently on the post-Survivor Series Raw when Awesome Truth (The Miz and R-Truth) decided to mock Cena for having the Madison Square Garden fans all booing him the night before, and cheering The Rock. Of course, Cena turned the attempted insult right around into a brilliant "The Reason You Suck" Speech so magnificent... that he broke up Awesome Truth without even laying a finger on Miz or Truth.
  • Kid Appeal Character:
    • His gimmick is hated by adult male fans, at least tolerated by female fans because women love Cena himself, and very much beloved by children.
    • Lampshaded this outright during his 11/22 retirement speech: He asked the women and kids to scream "Let's go, Cena!" and all the guys to yell back "Cena sucks!" one more time.
  • Lantern Jaw of Justice: Have you seen the chin on this man?
  • Lampshade Hanging:
    • In Cena's goodbye speech, he does this to his fanbase, by having "all the girls and little kids say "Let's Go Cena" and all the dudes over 18 say "Cena sucks".
    • Is very aware of the mixed reaction he gets from the fans and references it almost weekly.
  • Large Ham:
    • At this point, it's possible that fans tune into Raw just to see how much scenery he will chew.
    • Talking quietly to convey seriousness AND THEN YELLING LOUDLY TO CONVEY INTENSITY!!!
    • You know the scary part? Age has mellowed him. Watch him doing "Five Questions with The Champ/with John Cena," they give him five questions from fans, turn on a camera, and let it roll, and Cena usually like an over-caffeinated squirrel the entire time. Many of them are on Youtube, enjoy.
  • Leitmotif: "Basic Thuganomics" and "The Time is Now", both of which Cena recorded himself.
  • Made of Iron: Arguably in Real Life, but definitely booked this way - sometimes to nonsensical levels.
    • Dented Iron: Cena's apparent situation recently. Other than winning his match against Brock Lesnar (and he was dominated for most of that match) he's been getting his ass kicked by anything that's not nailed down.
  • Nice Character, Nice Actor: This plays pretty straight, to the chagrin of some, and Love It or Hate It, it's the reason he's so marketable. As the Mis Blamed entry states, it's pretty obvious that his perpetual push is more a result of WWE's booking decisions than any politicking done on his part.
  • Money, Dear Boy: The reason for Cena's current face gimmick has lasted as long as it has. He has drawn in tons of money for WWE which has made them afraid of changing his character at all.
  • Montreal Screwjob: Invoked and defied in his Money in the Bank 2011 match against CM Punk. Michael Cole mentioned that Bret Hart tried to leave the (then) WWF with the title, leading to the screwjob, then Vince Mc Mahon came in and tried to end the match without Punk tapping while Punk was in the STF. Cena stopped the hold and came out and told Vince that the match would end fair and square.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown:
    • Cena's been involved in a few of these, including his Extreme Rules match with Rob Van Dam at ECW One Night Stand 2006 and his No-DQ Iron Man Match with Randy Orton at Bragging Rights in 2009.
    • Gives one to Kane in revenge for what Kane had done to Zack Ryder.
    • He got absolutely destroyed by Lesnar for most of their Extreme Rules match. Don't believe me? The ref had to to stop the match twice in 5 minutes because Lesnar busted him open the hard way, twice.
    • Any match that's a gimmick match, be it a Last Man Standing Match or and Iron Man match, Cena will for the majority of it get his ass handed to him, only to pull off a victory at the end.
  • No Sell: Cena has been criticized for doing this quite a bit since his rise to the main event.
  • Obvious Rule Patch: "Babyface must join the heel faction" angles usually have the rather glaring Plot Hole that the babyface doesn't really need to stay in the group and do as he's told. Raw's anonymous GM fixed that up by declaring that Cena would be fired unless he did as Wade Barrett commanded.
  • Out of Focus: As odd as it sounds. He hasn't been in the championship picture for a long while.
  • Pec Flex: While he dosen't really do it, there are some instances where one of his pecs would flex. But you have to pay close attention.
  • Pet the Dog: After Daniel Bryan was unceremoniously fired after the NXT Riot, he got on his Twitter feed and proclaimed that he should be given another chance, including Cena wanting to have a proper match with him.
  • Popularity Power:
    • Just one of the reasons Cena's pushed as WWE's current-day Hulk Hogan.
    • In a rather Genre Savvy moment, he used this to force Vince McMahon to let Punk come back to get the match he'd earned.
  • Precision F-Strike:
    • The 10/25/10 edition of RAW saw Cena slipping in a "damn" into his rant against Wade Barrett. In PG-WWE, where swear words are just not used, this was used to show that things have gotten serious, to great effect.
    • He said on the 1/10/11 edition that he would kick CM Punk's ass.
    • Hit Eve Torres with a pretty strong one on a recent RAW (It Makes Sense in Context). Comparing her to The Rock, Cena rounds off his promo with "You're perfect for each other! You're both pretentious scandalous bitches."
  • Pretty Fly for a White Guy: As the Dr. Of Thuganomics.
  • Pyrrhic Victory: Despite beating Brock Lesnar at Extreme Rules, Cena announced that he'd likely have to take a leave of absence to recover from the brutalizing he had received from "The Next Big Thing".
  • The Rival: Batista ever since the 2005 Royal Rumble until Big Dave's Face Heel Turn in late 2009. By the time of their Wrestlemania 26 encounter, Batista is portrayed as the Rival Turned Evil.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge:
    • After being 'fired' from The Nexus, Cena's recent backstage sneak attacks on Nexus members.
    • Goes on another against Kane for what Kane had done to Zack Ryder.
  • Rogues Gallery: Edge, Randy Orton, Kurt Angle, The Nexus, Brock Lesnar, JBL, The Big Show, The Miz, Batista, Kane and finally, The Rock.
  • Self-Deprecation: His retirement speech.
    • Also some of his promos concerning The Rock.
  • Semper Fi: As mentioned he played a Marine in... well, The Marine. This had ebbed over into his wrestling character and even been used for his Smackdown vs. Raw storyline.
  • Sigil Spam: Shirts, wristbands, titantron, stage graphics, his hand sign is visible nearly everywhere.
  • Significant Monogram: Not intentional, Or is it?
  • Spoonerism: Ruck Fules!
    • Go Puck Yourself!
  • Spotlight-Stealing Squad:
    • Since 2005, Cena has competed in one of the world championship matches in every Wrestlemania and has so far lost only twice.
    • Since 2006 his title matches at Wrestlemania were always at the main event or higher in the card despite his challenger or he himself didn't won the Royal Rumble. Subverted in 2008, ironically, when he won the Rumble, but his title match wasn't in the main event. And in 2009, where the actual Rumble winner challenged the champion in that year's WM main event.
  • Stop Being Stereotypical: There's a small but growing number of Smarks that are honestly getting tired of the endless Cena bashing. It's not that they like him, it's just that after five years, it's obvious that WWE aren't going to change anything and have basically come to accept that Cena's just something they have to deal with. Now they just feel like it would be a much better use of time and effort to critique the other aspects of WWE that piss them off.
  • Smug Super: Whenever Cena has to deal with his detractors, he will do it with the smuggest, shit-eating grin possible and rub it in everyone's face. His feud with the Rock made for a lot of examples.
  • The Southpaw: He writes with his left hand, but whenever he wrestles, he uses his right arm.
  • Take That: Kayfabe example. During his feud with Brock Lesnar in early 2003, he named his finishing move "The F-U" as a dig at Lesnar, whose finishing move was "The F-5."
  • Take That, Audience!: There was a group of Anti-Cena fans sitting in the front row at Wrestlemania XXVI. After winning the match, John Cena responded by posing in front of them.
    • He does this every now and then.
  • "Take That!" Kiss: To Vicki Guerrero in his handicap match against her and Dolph Ziggler.
  • Ten-Minute Retirement: In the autumn of 2010. It lasted a little longer than ten minutes, and he was never really gone per se since he still lingered in the crowd and jumped members of Nexus backstage at random, but it still applied.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech:
  • Unexplained Recovery: During his feud with Carlito, Cena was apparently "stabbed" in the back by Carlito's lackey at a night club. He never showed any ill effects. Eddie Guerrero even hung a lampshade on it later on, mentioning that his (non-existent) scar had healed up pretty well.
  • Unknown Rival:
  • Unnecessary Roughness:
    • Probably as far as PG-WWE goes, his Attitude Adjustment to Justin Gabriel onto (and almost through) the windshield of a car on the 11-29-10 episode of RAW probably counts as this.
    • Dropping about 25 chairs or so onto Wade Barrett after decisively defeating him at the 2011 WWE TLC pay-per-view likely counts.
    • He was certainly going for this when he beat the crap out of Jack Swagger...and almost succeeded. [4] Let's put it this way. Before Kane's promo stopped him, Cena was about to give Swagger a one-man Con-chair-to...with steel steps.
    • The Monday Night Raw after the 2012 Royal Rumble made Cena finally beat down Kane for all the abuse and crap he gave to Ryder. The only thing that remains is whether Cena will do as Kane says and embrace the hatred.
  • Visual Pun: On occasions while he's Getting Crap Past the Radar.
  • Weapon of Choice: While in his "rapper" gimmick, Cena's favorite weapon was his lock-and-chain necklace. Along with those "custom brass knucks" too. Even his customized belts.
  • What Could Have Been: Going down with a serious injury literally days before he was to drop the WWE Championship at Unforgiven 2007 to Randy Orton in what would most likely have been another intensifier to their already red-hot feud.
  • What the Hell, Hero?:
    • In his '06 feud with Edge, Cena would often beat up Lita without any kind of provocation for no real reason, not to mention accuse her of carrying various sexually transmitted diseases around the locker room without anything remotely resembling biological proof or common sense.
    • His late 2010-early 2011 feud with CM Punk was initiated by Punk getting tired of Cena's supposedly "unheroic" actions, and particularly set off by his reaction to Cena dropping 25 chairs from the WWE TLC set onto Nexus leader Wade Barrett. Perhaps fittingly, Punk switched targets rather quickly - to Randy Orton, who, if anything, gets more of the Designated Hero treatment than Cena does.
    • Zack Ryder recently caught Cena kissing Zack's love interest Eve Torres after saving her from Kane. Needless to say, Ryder was none to pleased to see Cena supposedly macking it off with Eve, as he even slapped Cena in the face when confronting him.
    • Even if Eve Torres had taken a serious level in Jerkass, one does have to wonder whether the tongue-lashing he gave Eve, leaving her a sobbing wreck in the ring to the point where officials had to help her out, wasn't a bit excessive.
    • Edge gives a special birthday lecture on letting Brock Lesnar push him around.
    • Gave one to The Big Show for selling out and helping John Laurinaitis win at Over The Limit. Cena was ticked off.


  • When All You Have Is a Hammer: Cena has won various matches with the FU or STFU, even a First Blood Match.
  • Worthy Opponent: CM Punk has been the one guy to consistently get the better of Cena, both on the mic and in the ring, particularly their epic match at Money in the Bank 2011. They're a perfect contrast of personalities and wrestling style, all of which meshes really well in the ring, and they've increasingly found themselves chafing equally at the outside meddling of the likes of Triple H, Vince McMahon, and John Laurinaitis. Also, both have shown some degree of respect for one another, CM Punk admitting he does have respect for Cena and Cena outright congratulating Punk for a great match even though Cena was the loser. Cena even went out of his way to ensure Punk got a fair match that he deserved.
  • You Are What You Hate: Punk stated this, explaining how Cena (and moreover his hometown of Boston) was no longer an underdog, but now the face of the industry. The Boston Red Sox? More like the New York Yankees. Keep in mind that this speech was said in Boston pretty much insulting Cena in front of his hometown fans.
  • Your Approval Fills Me with Shame: When Kane praised him for inadvertently ruining Zack Ryder and Eve Torres' relationship, declaring that he had finally embraced the hate.
  • Your Princess Is in Another Castle:
    • JOHN CENA HAS DEFEATED WADE BARRETT AND THE NEXUS! Oh wait, CM Punk's Berserk Button was finally bit by a What the Hell, Hero? moment? He's gone on to become the leader of Nexus in Barrett's place? Enjoy!
    • Also goes down in history as the very first victim of a Money In The Bank cash-in, courtesy, of course, of Edge.


...You cant see this edit.

  1. Formerly known as the Protobomb when it was used as a finisher
  2. For those of you who don't know, 'johnson' is one of many euphemisms for a penis.
  3. Who did turn heel after admitting that she was "using" Zack Ryder and had similar plans for Cena...
  4. After Kane injured Zack Ryder by chokeslamming him off a platform the week before, Ryder was put in a US Title match with Swagger despite not being medically cleared to complete. John Laurinaitis gave Cena the match against Swagger to calm him down.