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DECEMBER 2020 WRESTLING TALK.


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13 minutes ago, LoneWolf&Subs said:

Main Event should take pointers from Dark. Their is still a market for shows that feature enhancement matches, and unproven journey men wrestlers. Not just guys the WWE has nothing for, and wall to wall RAW & Smackdown recaps.

TBF, they're incorporating more of RAW's storylines on Main Event lately, based on the clips I've seen. Particularly with Nikki Cross addressing Alexa Bliss and Ricochet cutting a good promo on Retribution.

It would be a good spot to see where some underused NXT folk are in their development. But they're keeping NXT separate because they have way too many COVID weirdos among their ranks.

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As someone who grew up on 80s WWE and hasn't taken a break watching since, two main problems are very apparent to me.

1. In the late 80s the stories had a beginning a middle and an end. Shit happened that progressed the stories, and the stories didn't change randomly because Vince showed up to the building cranky and demanded rewrites. Now the time between story beats was very much stretched out because they were a syndication model and not a weekly cable model. But you got distinctive easy to understand, UNINTERUPTED stories. Hogan & Savage form a team because Andre & Dibiase together are too strong for either one of them. They vanquish Andre & Dibiase. Savage doesn't like Hogan being overly friendly with Liz. Liz gets hurt and Hogan leaves Savage hanging to tend to her. Savage snaps. Big money match, Hogan wins. Easy as fuck to follow.

Even more importantly the in between filler was compelling promos from easily defined characters in their own words. Hogan or Savage standing there with Mean Gene just spitting fire that flowed effortlessly because they knew their own characters. I'm gonna send you to the hospital. You aren't gonna take this belt. Ect. Not I'm gonna send you to a local medical facility. You won't defeat me in your championship opportunity. Today shit is so overly scripted and phony sounding. Everyone has to use official Vince McMahon verbiage and it ruins everything. Everyone sounds the same. And every writer is like a 4th grader trying to increase the font to stretch his book reportto hit the page count minimum. Over compensating and making things sound WAY more fake then just letting a wrestler cut a fucking promo. Like @Burgundy LaRue said, the best stuff in the women's tag story line was all on Raw Talk. And that's not surprising to me. That's the characters themselves cutting promos that aren't trying to over compensate. It's insanely simple. And simple is usually best.

2. The brand split fucking sucks. It waters down every single thing about WWE. There's 18 fucking titles in WWE. That's way too many. None of them mean anything. Trying to make Raw & Smackdown as distinctive brands has largely failed because they're the exact same thing. Same crew, same writers, and the talent rotates so frequently there's no REAL separation. Like, there's 4 world champions right now. How can you promote someone as the best when there are 4 equals under the same roof? Sure NXT & NXT UK champions aren't portrayed as equal to Raw & Smackdown. But it's so muddy because Raw & Smackdown are supposed to be equals. So a lot of fans would assume all top brand champs are supposed to be equals.

When Hogan was on top, he was THE man. When Austin was on top he was THE man. Compare that to now. Who is supposed to be THE man? Reigns right? We all know that. But WWE tries to say Reigns & McIntyre are both THE man. So neither of them actually come off as THE man. The whole product needs restructured to make sense. Have one WWE. With one world champion. One women's world champion. One set roster. Instead of spreading the talent so thin, load ONE roster with the very best you can. Keep NXT it's own thing, but streamline that shit too. Have a main roster. Have a developmental roster. NXT / NXT UK / NXT India. It's all developmental. Do the separate shows but quit acting like they all need to have separate brands.

 

TLDR : Scripted promos, frequent story tinkering, and the brand split make WWE a chore to get through. Restructuring and scraping the overly scripted promos are the only way to put a pulse back into the product.

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1 hour ago, Edwin said:

I can't even.

So you have the World Champion, PWI500 #1 defending the tile against the much ballyhooed Best Wrestler in the World, it's their second match ever (and the first match was a PPV Main Event that was famous for being excessively violent, and took place over a year earlier), AND a literal ICON making his company debut, and you think that's NOT a big deal? What more do you want, the moon on a stick?

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TV ratings don't matter until sweeps.  I doubt FOX or USA are that disappointed in the ratings considering WWE gives them consistent weekly live programming whereas if they were dependent on scripted taped programming, they'd be screwed due to the pandemic.

17 hours ago, The Green Meanie said:

I was real excited upon seeing this link, but they don't allow AdBlock users, so no thanks.

It works for me on a Windows 10 device without disabling.  Try disabling cosmetic filtering on AdBlock.

3 hours ago, paintedbynumbers said:

Does anyone  know if WWE is doing away with the classics on WWE Network? Nothing added or announced for December.  It's just sad at this point. 

In-office staff is limited with a lot of people working from home.  I don't think they can digitize the video library from home.

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2 hours ago, Technico Support said:

I wonder how far away from a total USA rebranding we are.  They went from blue sky shows to darker programming, but Mr. Robot (while a great show) didn't do much for them, Sam Esmail's new show died quickly, and who knows if/when Queen of the South is coming back

I was wondering about what happened to their original programming. They had all those shows with one word in the title, then Mr. Robot, and now I can't think of anything on there but Miz and Mrs. and the fucking Christies.

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It's going to be harder for channels like USA to get good first run dramas like Mr Robot anymore with Netflix/Amazon/HBO etc throwing money around like crazy.  For channels like USA and TNT, you're only really left with running either movies, re-runs or cheaply made reality shows that draw pretty decent. 

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2 hours ago, Mister TV said:

I doubt USA rebrands, the name have been around since the late 1970's and I think the days of goofy names like Spike TV are long gone. Any original programming under the Comcast banner that has a budget is going to be on Peacock, so that leaves USA with WWE, reruns of comfort shows, old movies that can be stretched to 2 or 3 hour blocks, and el cheapo reality/game shows. Losing the WWE would kill their overall rating and drop them down with the likes of WGN-America and Sundance, USA needs an anchor show and that's WWE wrestling on Monday nights.

Peacock is also exploiting WWE - there are a bunch of WWE specials listed in the Sports section. 

WWE has clear value to NBC even outside of the fact that RAW is a dying brand, so they'll be fine at next contract. 

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58 minutes ago, Curt McGirt said:

I was wondering about what happened to their original programming. They had all those shows with one word in the title, then Mr. Robot, and now I can't think of anything on there but Miz and Mrs. and the fucking Christies.

I checked out their website this morning.  Their rotating banner is WWE, Chrisley, Miz & Mrs, WWE, The Croods, WWE, Miz and Mrs, NXT.  It's crazy.

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Ric Flair said on ESPN today that the WWE is constructing a physical Hall of Fame building in Orlando.

https://www.f4wonline.com/wwe-news/ric-flair-wwe-building-hall-fame-orlando-327766

Quote

During an appearance with Rachel Nichols on ESPN's The Jump, Ric Flair said WWE is building a physical Hall of Fame in Orlando, Florida.

In talking about his gold robe for which the new Adidas/Damian Lillard "Ric Flair' sneakers were inspired from, Flair said WWE had actually bought the robe for the Hall of Fame, but that the construction of it is being delayed due to the pandemic.

WWE has roots in the city with their Performance Center and relationship with Full Sail University in nearby Winter Park.

He added the robe is one of his favorites and joked that he asked WWE to get another Hall of Fame ring in the Entertainer wing. He is already the first two-time WWE Hall of Fame inductee for himself and as part of the Four Horsemen.

 

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The ratings don't matter point is valid. WWE is more profitable now than ever before. Compare that to Disney, who also is more profitable than ever as well. But Disney is also clicking at the highest quality they've ever had. WWE's quality isn't an all-time low, but it's not far behind. What counts more to a corporation tho? Profits or quality? Nothing is going to change in WWE until the profits change. So accept the poor quality programming, or jump off the ship (like 4 million + other viewers have in the last 15 years).

Even when Vince steps down, not much is gonna change if the profits are still there. It's the gourmet restaurant vs fast food argument. 99 billion served, even middle of the road food, is still 99 billion served 🤷‍♂️

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Disney's profitability and stock price is being driven by Disney+ subs. That's sustainable because Disney also has multiple pipelines for quality IP that they can feed to Disney+.

WWE is surviving based off TV rights for live programming being overvalued. Maybe that's because they're not actually overvalued! Consensus that they are could be wrong about this, after all. However, WWE is much more at risk of plummeting profits than Disney.

This is all to say that Disney has a varied combination of legacy IP and new quality IP that will boost them. WWE even at its highest quality is still just pro wrestling - no diversity in programming. I actually do understand Vince's desire to diversify into other sporting events or TV programming - he just doesn't have any talent for that stuff. WWE is very much at the mercy of TV rights. If they ever do correct, that's a problem. But again, who's to say that they're in for a correction? Investors keep telling me TSLA is going to correct any day now, too.

Edited by Smelly McUgly
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10 minutes ago, Technico Support said:

I checked out their website this morning.  Their rotating banner is WWE, Chrisley, Miz & Mrs, WWE, The Croods, WWE, Miz and Mrs, NXT.  It's crazy.

Chrisley still has a show? Wasn’t he embroiled in a scandal?

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3 minutes ago, LoneWolf&Subs said:

Chrisley still has a show? Wasn’t he embroiled in a scandal?

I mean I think it's Chrisley.  His plastic surgery has hit that uncanney valley point where he could be replaced with a robot and you wouldn't know it.

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1 hour ago, LoneWolf&Subs said:

Chrisley still has a show? Wasn’t he embroiled in a scandal?

Yes, he's currently under indictment for Federal tax evasion and fraud charges and is out on bail.  There's also a story I know I read about him having had a very heated argument with his daughter, which depending on how it got reported involved him kidnapping her or imprisoning her against her will.  

It speaks to how desperately USA needs content and why the WWE is going absolutely nowhere.

Also, since he's on TV, I fully expect the President to pardon him before he leaves next month. 

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OK, two days in a row I end up arguing with someone who goes out of their way to defend something and then insists they don't even like it. What the actual fuck?

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5 hours ago, Burgundy LaRue said:

Carmella has at no point been underutilized, and I'd pick Billie Kay over Peyton Royce if I need to showcase a former IIconic more. 

That no Black or Brown wrestlers show up on that list is noticeable, but not surprising.

NBCU has had some turnover at key positions, as I remember. So who knows if the new bosses are as friendly towards RAW as in the past. But as mentioned, USA doesn't have much else. RAW is their #1 show by a mile.

We're probably closer to Vince doing a modified version of the Wild Card rule again. It wouldn't be my first choice, but I can see them wanting to get Roman and Sasha over to RAW somehow, just to see if they can help with ratings.

Hurt Business should be the new Evolution/Horsemen but we all know this company won't make that happen.

Lashley - WWE Champion
Alexander - US Champion
MVP/Shelton - Tag Champions

Then you can have someone like Keith Lee work his way through them - Lee and Ricochet win the tag belts. Lee beats Alexander for the US title, Lashley costs him that belt and we move on to the Lee/Lashley WWE title match.

It's basic, reliable booking.

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2 minutes ago, mattdangerously said:

Yeah, but now what do you do with him?

Let things play out, man, we'll see where they're going. Give it time.

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