I talked about this earlier in the week on another website. I think it bears repeating that WWE is in a slightly tenuous position.
With 10 matches slated for WrestleMania 33 in less than two weeks, there is no room for error. These matches must tell a story that makes the fan base want to read a little more. The next chapter to write should not be the night after in hopes of “fixing” the problems that existed in Orlando. WWE’s biggest downfall is booking pay-per-view events and then falling back on its Monday and Tuesday night programming. They are relying on these shows to make corrections on stories that were incomplete.
For those of you who have turned in terrible English papers, you know how teachers hate grading something that does not make any sense. The McMahons must be on point, and the message they send to the fans through matches, personalities, and character content have to connect the next couple of months leading to SummerSlam.
As a fan, my biggest fear is that everything will fall apart in Orlando. Are we going to be left wondering what the heck just happened? There are some exciting matches. Also, there are matches I wish would not happen. Undertaker losing to Roman Reigns is a necessary evil of progression. John Cena in the mid card with Nikki Bella is necessary for younger wrestlers to move forward. The match between Shane McMahon and AJ Styles is a product of lack of lead talent. In addition, the fatal four-way match for the Raw Women’s Title has become a necessity because there is nobody else to move forward as a lead heel or a lead baby face.
Do not miss what I am saying – this event on April 2 should kick ass. There are storylines of plenty that could be main events. What I am saying is that the product as a whole has to sell. It has to make us all want more.
Professional wrestling has gotten away from the “fading match.” Where television programs had their biggest event at the end of the show. Where the outcome was not determined until after the cameras went dark.
Announcer Bob Caudill was famous for making that kind of call. Fans wondered what happened and because there was not the invention of the Internet or cheat sheets or the social networks, they had to tune in next week to find out what the results were. Vince McMahon did a great job in the 1980s of creating similar drama. Then he did a really good job during the Attitude Era of taking characters that made their presence known and fans could not wait to see if that character could outdo himself in front of a live audience.
None of that is part of today’s business. For that reason, the product that the McMahons put out, TNA puts out, or even Ring of Honor lacks the chutzpah that old-school wrestling gave us.
No way have I felt cheated. At 45 years-old, wrestling promos and the selling of a match shold be exciting. But honestly, they have left a little emptiness. I do not get to see The Rock tell us what he is thinking on a weekly basis. I do not get to see Shawn Michaels tell us how great he is going to be at a WrestleMania event. Nor do I get to see Arn Anderson cut an awesome promo for the Four Horsemen. The wrestlers today do not have a clue about how to sell the biggest event on WWE’s calendar.
While SmackDown Live is beating the crap out of Monday Night Raw on a weekly basis. Big brother Shane is teaching his sister Stephanie a lesson in the art of selling matches. There is still a disconnection of sorts from what their father put together. Compared to what the fans are viewing today.
While I am not expecting anybody to go back in time and re-create Randy Savage and Ricky Steamboat, I sure would like to see an incarnation of Ric Flair challenging Magnum TA with a title on the line.
All of this can quell itself if WrestleMania 33 tells us the story it should. If Randy Orton puts Bray Wyatt over, and Kevin Owens and Chris Jericho give us an instant classic then I am satisfied. The issues at hand are with both women’s divisions. In addition, the hot potato effect in the tag team division can work itself out in the coming weeks. What fans like myself need to see is consistency, excitement, and a rising action to a story. Michael Cole should be promoting the story every week as an episode.
There is a real chance that could happen in less than two weeks. However, anything less than that the fans like myself will be clamoring for yet more change. Moreover, the way the WWE has built their rosters that change may not come soon enough.