When the World Wrestling Entertainment bought out all of its competition it had all of the power in the sense of men and women who made an actual living off of wrestling would have no where to go that paid the bills but the WWE. Following we have the name change and the fireside chat that Vince McMahon gave us explaining that the focus was not wrestling but entertainment. Concluding with the ratings change to PG. The entire fabric of professional wrestling transformed, but creating a very alienating cage for the audience that was its bread and butter for so many years. The truth is, with the exception of children who did not grow up on classic professional wrestling, we all watch the product with a desperate hope of seeing a glimpse of what we grew so familiar with. We stay tuned in because they occasionally give us a Rick Flair appearance or the pop of Hogans “Real American theme” as well as The Undertakers gong, but we long for professional wrestling and not what we are witnessing today. Why is that?
Men today still have an old school spirit when it comes to sports period. The days of going to a sportatorium and having a soda with some popcorn and watching gladiators battle. The battles were very believable because they were not peaked out at every single event. Today the WWE peaks on every episode of RAW as well as its Pay Per Views. There was really no difference between the six man battle at Extreme Rules and Payback because the match was already peaked. You can watch it for mediocre entertainment but that seems to be something the WWE has become comfortable with. The audience is bored to tears now with the evil boss plot. It worked well with Vince McMahon because it was a real life situation that he exploited and banked on which was his public fall out with Bret Hart. It was great and Stone Cold Steve Austin blossomed it into a masterpiece. But it’s all done with and yet they continue milk the tit dry. Because it has become very PG and child friendly there is nothing really in it for a man who simply wants to take his soon to a wrestling supercard and have a beer, buy his boy a soda and teach him a few things. Today twitter hashtags create a cage door that is spewed out by the commentators every five seconds which most men aren’t interested in, every single wrestler from lower tier to main event has music creating some of the cheesiest and annoying themes ever heard and your superstars now conduct interviews discussing being a heel or a babyface thus completely ruining any kayfabe what so ever. The wrestlers all look like “fitness models” as opposed to bodybuilders or just tough son of a bitches in general where as it used to be the wrestlers didn’t have to look aesthetically appealing but could still carry the match due to their wrestling talent and now it’s the other way around. Sadly like all of our media, everything is very fast paced. There is no build up in a match or believable pain. No long submission holds such as Bret Harts sharpshooter on Austin that had him bleeding until he passed out. The talent are all banged up due to their sloppy wrestling that has the tempo entirely too fast.
All of the above may sound like the bitching and complaining of someone stuck in the past , however may I remind you that is what the majority of the target audience is. Not just men but women, who are now subjected to seeing their sex portrayed as ignorant eye candy as opposed to actual female talent that used to exist. How exactly can we fix all of this? Spread the company out. Instead of making the WWE a one product brand, create multiple products. Bring back WCW and ECW and provide different rated products. When I say bring back in applying it to those brands, I do not mean bring them back to what they once were. I am saying they should use the assets that they own and spread out into multiple products. Create their own competition that they can still control. They are the number one source of this product but it hinders them to make the entire company one product. We find ourselves watching the network now not for today’s wrestling but for what we miss so dearly, which makes the WWE Network a nostalgia app. In a way it adds fuel to the fire for us because we watch the network and are then subjected to the content of today’s product and it’s piss poor in comparison. It doesn’t matter if its in HD or even 3D, nor does it matter if you have a light spectacle so big that the audience has to wear sunglasses, if the content itself is mediocre it spoils the entire operation.
Talent afraid to stand up for themselves due to only one company to work for. A company that has become lazy and mediocre due to eliminating all competition and trying to appeal to the politically correct and changing the rating of their content so someones wife can run for senate. The same story lines recycled but always obvious that you’ve seen it all before. One main show and two smaller ones for unused talent. You have no idea what someone like Damien Sandow could do with content of a different rating. That man could be another Hulk Hogan if he was given the proper material. Other stars may work better in a cruisier weight environment on a another show. Keep the shows separate and make them completely different instead of having a draft and having them together at Pay Per Views. There is no point of acquiring all of the competition and just sitting on it then providing us with nostalgia and mediocre content. The number one source of wrestling must provide a product for everyone and not try to force everyone to enjoy one product.