And feminism has been the babyface multiple times in wrestling. Even in the middle of the Attitude era, one of the most misogynistic times in all of wrestling history, Chyna still managed to be one of the most popular babyfaces on the roster. Some people still bitched and moaned about how she ruined the IC title by wearing it, but clearly the paying fans loved it when she beat up men.
This really has nothing to do with feminisn though. Chyna beating up men was basically a freak show. Plus she was a shit worker, the matches were horrible. Only Jeff Jarrett managed to get something pretty decent ot of her. The fact she wouldn't work with other women because she felt it was "beneath her" says a lot. Chyna was pushed that way because she was basically a man. That what got her over. She had the body of a man, yet no one would hit her because she was a woman. It played on social taboos, despite the fact she was almost as big and strong as the guys. Which was brillant, at first. When she became "just another guy", it negated everything unique about her gimmick. The fact she sucked as a worker was even worse, as it was painfull to see.
Does NXT support for the women's matches and characters have anything to do with feminism? It seemed like they were just the best acts on the roster and responding to quality more than any type of statement.
Pretty much. The fact Bailey is not oversexualised makes her a positive figure since she's also the underdog finally getting to the top (or course you could push it even further in term of social commentary about the whole "getting to the top" aspect of the game, but that would be questionning the entire sports realm).
Then again, there's nothing wrong about sexualization in itself, as long as it's assumed as such from the point of view of the woman. Plus, one could argue that Bailey and her imagery are un-sexualized because it refers to childhood. I mean, the giant… stuff (dunno the name in English, well, in French probably either) during her entrance, her whole outfit have somethig "childish" about it. Well, not childish. But something refering to childhood, that's for sure. So. I dunno. I could probably deep deeper into this.