The Straight Edge Society
|The Straight Edge Society|
CM Punk, Luke Gallows and Serena during an episode of SmackDown
|Members||CM Punk (leader)
Joey Mercury / Joseph Mercury
|Name(s)||The Straight Edge Society|
|Debut||November 27, 2009|
|Disbanded||September 3, 2010|
The Straight Edge Society was a villainous alliance in World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) that appeared on its SmackDown brand. The concept behind the group was based around the straight edge lifestyle, which promotes and abides to discipline - primarily no smoking, drinking, or drugs. The group acted as a militant organization, denouncing all people who don't live the straight edge lifestyle, even those who also abstain from substance abuse. New members were required to shave their heads, which signified a "new beginning." The founder and leader of the group was CM Punk, who follows the straight edge lifestyle in real life.
Before the Society formed, CM Punk feuded with Jeff Hardy over the World Heavyweight Championship while making allusions to Hardy's drug usage. In the end, on the August 28 edition of SmackDown, CM Punk retained his Heavyweight title in a Loser Leaves WWE Steel Cage match and Jeff left the WWE. The formation began on the November 27, 2009 episode of SmackDown where CM Punk transformed the formerly mentally handicapped and unresponsive Festus into the focused and driven Luke Gallows. Gallows explained that his friends got him hooked on prescription pain medication, which explained his behavior as Festus. Gallows credited Punk with cleaning him up and "showing him the way," and became Punk's main enforcer. Gallows would assist Punk in his feuds with R-Truth and Matt Hardy. A few weeks later, the two began shaving the heads of (planted) fans in the audience who wished to follow the straight edge lifestyle, demonstrating a "new beginning" for their lives. Before Punk was able to find a third person to convert, a woman named Serena came out of the crowd begging to be saved by Punk. Instead of having security escort her out, he accepted Serena and shaved her head. From thereafter, Serena accompanied Punk and ran interference in his matches.
Punk would interrupt many events in an attempt to recruit members to the society. From the start of the 2010 Royal Rumble, he would preach while eliminating Dolph Ziggler, Evan Bourne, JTG, Beth Phoenix and Zack Ryder. He was ultimately eliminated from the speaking platform by Triple H, whom he had tried to convert previously. Triple H had espoused that he too avoided drugs, smoke and alcohol, but didn't think it was right to be preaching like Punk.
On February 23, 2010 it was revealed that Punk would be mentoring Darren Young, a "South Beach Party Boy", on the first season of NXT. A few weeks later, Young became fascinated with the S.E.S. and decided to join them, only to quickly change his mind after finding out he had to shave his head as initiation.
Feud with Rey Mysterio
The SES would begin a feud with Rey Mysterio at the Elimination Chamber event, where Punk was eliminated by Mysterio in an Elimination Chamber match for the World Heavyweight Championship. The feud would then intensify when Mysterio cost Punk a qualifying match for the Money in the Bank ladder match at WrestleMania XXVI. The SES would then interrupt Mysterio's daughter's ninth birthday party, enticing Mysterio into challenging Punk to a match at WrestleMania, where if Mysterio lost, he would have to join the SES. At WrestleMania, Mysterio defeated Punk.
A rematch was made for at Extreme Rules where Mysterio said if Punk lost, Rey would have to shave Punk's head. Punk won the match with interference from a mysterious fourth member who concealed himself either with a hood or a mask. On the following episode of SmackDown, after getting assaulted by Mysterio during a match with Luke Gallows against Montel Vontavious Porter, the two agreed to face each other at Over the Limit in May, in a match which combined the stipulations of their previous two pay-per-view matches. At Over the Limit, Punk was defeated and wound up getting his head shaved after interference from Kane. To conceal his baldness, Punk then began to wear a mask.
In June, Punk participated in a Fatal Four-Way match at the Fatal 4 Way event for Jack Swagger's World Heavyweight Championship that also featured eventual winner Rey Mysterio and The Big Show. Near the end of the match, Kane interfered and took Punk from the ring, allegedly accusing him of injuring The Undertaker, causing Punk to lose the match and not win the title. On the June 25 edition of SmackDown, Punk faced Kane in a No Disqualification match, where Punk injured his arm and left the building, resulting in a no contest. After an ultimatum was set by Kane to show Punk's innocence concerning a recent attack on The Undertaker, Serena showed security camera footage of herself breaking edge by drinking at a bar with an unknown man on the same night The Undertaker had been attacked, only for the other SES members to arrive on the scene and angrily trash the place. Despite facing expulsion from the SES, Serena was forgiven by Punk after she told him she showed the video to protect him from Kane, promising to never break the code again.
Feud with Big Show, split and aftermath
The next week, Punk got into a verbal altercation with The Big Show with regards to the upcoming Money in the Bank pay-per-view and a ladder custom made for The Big Show. Retaliating against an attack from the SES, Big Show chased Punk up the ladder and pulled his mask off, revealing his bald head. On the July 23 edition of SmackDown, the "mystery man" wrestled and lost to The Big Show. The mystery man's mask was then pulled off, revealing him to be Joey Mercury. The next week, Punk berated the three other members, stating that they're nothing without him. This changed after Gallows lost to Big Show later in the night by DQ after all four members of the Straight Edge Society attacked Big Show and crushed his hand repeatedly on the steel steps, with Punk revealing that his arm had healed. Later the Big Show challenged all three members of the Straight Edge Society in a handicap match at SummerSlam, which Big Show won. On the next edition of SmackDown, Serena and Gallows competed in a tag team match against Big Show and Kelly Kelly, which if Gallows and Serena lost, they would be kicked out of the The SES. Serena won the match by using a gutbuster on Kelly. On the August 27 edition of SmackDown, after his match with JTG, Punk ordered the Society to assault Big Show during his match with Gallows, but Show defeated Gallows, showing signs of discontinuity in the Society. Later on in the night, WWE.com announced that Serena was released from her contract, severing her ties to The S.E.S. On the September 3 edition of SmackDown, after losing a handicap match to The Big Show, a visibly frustrated CM Punk executed a GTS to Luke Gallows and left the ring. On the September 24 edition of SmackDown, Gallows confronted Punk, saying that after defeating him later in the night, he would celebrate by having a beer. However, Punk would go on to win the match and Gallows would later be released from the company shortly thereafter, thus fully disbanding the Society. Eventually, Punk abruptly walked out of the company in January 2014 leaving Mercury, the sole former member of the group, employed by the WWE.
- Punk's finishing moves
- Anaconda vise
- GTS – Go To Sleep (Fireman's carry dropped into a knee strike to the face)
- Gallows' finishing moves
- Mercury's finishing moves
- Serena's finishing moves
- Entrance themes
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