The Hot Topic: The Holy S*** Factor

Rob Taylor


Greetings once more for is a somewhat ironic column, the first to be published on WZForums new home but one that could prove to be the last THT for a while… 3 weeks tomorrow I will be travelling to Chennai, India to participate in a 3 month volunteer programme called “School Of Rock”, luckily since I dropped 50lbs and shaved, I no longer look like Jack Black!!! I get to help fashion the music scene in another country, which is what my degree and chosen profession is all about… The downside, I have no idea whether I will even see any Wrestling over there… so if not THT will maybe disapper for a few months, though The ReHeat may take it’s place as it’s more “retro”..

It is also sad in that the last column, on the Orton suspension, actually broke my record for responses…Thank you to everyone who sent feedback…it is always read and I do reply to all of them, eventually…

Anyhow, as ever lets cast an eye over recent events to kick things off…

Kane vs Kane… Interesting, didn’t seem to have the “Holy ****” factor that Paul Bearer accompanying “Masked Kane” would have drawn… but I will bear with it and see where it goes, could we even see the long rumored return of the “Million Dollar Man” in this angle, after all he “found the Undertaker”, maybe he “found Kane” too!

Burchill is injured and sadly ends one of Smackdowns most promising angles, sure it was a bit camp, but with the new Pirates Of The Carribean movie out soon Burchill would have picked up some free momentum off the back of it… Let’s hope he returns on RAW as Harry Smith’s partner in a new “British Bulldogs”.

Nitro and Melina will be VERY big on RAW, losing to the Champ is no disgrace and with their almost tweener position with the fans, they could easily go face and be challenging Shelton very soon.

Shane has seemingly “done his annual” stint for WWE and gone back to the sidelines…Why won’t Vince let him have a prolonged power role on WWE TV? Cos he knows Shane is better at it perhaps?

It will be good to see Chavo move into a feud with Rey, especially if the World title is still at stake… Forget all the “Eddie” stuff, these guys will have some blistering World Title matches… when was the last time Smackdown could really boast that? It will be short live though…My prediction, Chavo gets the Yoko title win, only for Batista to end it moments later…which leads me to…All Hail King Booker… This guy deserves the shot that is coming his way, come Summerslam he could be the hottest thing in WWE, his promos have improved, his injuries seem to be less of an issue, he is back to being the Booker T that carried WCW for that period…With the lack of real star power on SD Booker seems to be the guy WWE is relying on to “step up”.

There is a lot of talk of Smackdown being in trouble with Kurt’s shocking defection, but the future is still bright, there is a lot of potential there… WWE is supposedly trying to gett Jeff Hardy back, add him to the SD mix, either feuding with or teaming with Matt and star power is back… Jericho, The Rock, anyone of those guys could easily show up for a short Smackdown. Now is the time for WWE’s next big star to make himself known, Lashley is on the way, Matt Hardy is popular and a big enough name already, Mr. Kennedy is untapped potential wise… and if either of those fail, why not a Carlito or Kane?

SD is far from being in a bad position, it has the chance to forge a completely new identity in the coming weeks and months…

Which leads me to this columns Hot Topic…

I could talk about the new ECW but I’d rather wait and see, but there is a definite shift in WWE’s philosophy over the last few months, coinciding with the “Power is Back” campaign…

Before WWE very much had a mentality of it provided fans with what it wanted to provide… Vince and Co would listen to fan reactions but very much listen to themselves first… This resulted in talent that was extremely over walking away like Christian and Jericho because at that point, the grass really was greener.

In recent weeks, we have seen several things that were once a staple of the Monday Night wars return to WWE, the Holy ****” factor being the biggest…

By definition, the “Holy ****” factor is when something SO out of leftfield or so shocking happens that the fans simply chant it… but it has evolved into the moment that gets the fans buzzing, forums igniting and signs made up for the next weeks show…

It started last year with the random returns of former stars, like the “One Night Only” Rocker’s reunion, as they were SO unexpected, even to net fans they reacted in a much more positive way than to most angles, it continued in small doses until Joey Styles altercation with Jerry Lawler and his subsequent “shoot/work” on RAW. Even though we knew it was part of the show, we also could tell that was really what Joey thought, and it was the first time Vince had ever allowed someone to go out on his show and basically piss on WWE… It was a “holy ****” moment…

Next we have Vince & Shane v HBK and God…but that was a Holy **** moment for a totally different reason…but we’ll skip that and move on to… Mick Foley turning heel on Tommy Dreamer… it was a shocking moment that the man who had been exclusivly face since KOTR 1996had gone bad… Yep it was THAT long…10 years bar about 6 weeks!

Then we had the moment Kurt Angle not only comes out as an ECW wrestler, but appears to be 100% behind Heyman, beating 7 bells out of Foley for threatening his new boss… Even the smartest fan would have thought Kurt’s erm…”angle” would have been he resented the draft…but no he tore into Foley like he had been ECW his whole career… That was a Holy **** moment…

Meanwhile on Smackdown we have Rey winning the gold, JBL “quitting” both equally shocking…

WWE is starting to show signs of “must see TV” again because you never know when the next Holy **** moment is, fans who had no intention of ordering ECW:ONS will now do so, cos they don’t want to miss one of these moments… They will watch RAW, SD AND ECW…cos they don’t want to miss one…

The hard part for Vince is delivering them on a consistant basis, after all, the DX reunion has been telegraphed so far in advance that what could have been an awesome moment is now…”get on with it already…”

For Vince to keep delivering these type of moments, like he did during the Wars, he needs to be making overtures to all kinds of people, The Rock, Jericho, Hogan, Savage, even Goldberg and Brock… he needs to be putting people you thought you’d never see again back on WWE TV on a regular basis and allowing his existing talent on all 3 brands to push the envelope like Foley, like Styles, RVD (anyone want to bet he is really going to ECW when he wins that belt? next HS moment RVD rejecting ECW for WWE perhaps?)

At the heart of it, “The Power” seems to be the Power to stun an audience… Vince has finally learned he has to fight the Monday Night Wars all over again, but this time there is no opposition but WWE itself…

Am I right, am I wrong? Is WWE returning to Shock TV or is it a few Isolated blips… as ever email me at robwilltaylor@hotmail.com with your thoughts!

Have a news tip? Attended an event and want to send a live report? Submit it now!
monitoring_string = "851cc24eadecaa7a82287c82808f23d0"