The Wannabe Column of the Week by Tony Hudson…..
The Gun is in the Hand
In 2006 plans are in place for TNA to begin producing house shows. This is the promotion’s first step on the long march to what could be the greatest promotional war of our time. When TNA and WWE square off on an even field, it will make the Monday Night Wars look like a Diva battle Royal. A war is brewing, and its outcome will determine the future of pro-wrestling for decades to come.
In the past year I’ve read hundreds of well produced columns that have reviewed, analyzed and speculated on this subject with immaculate detail. Therefore there’s not much I can add because you’ve probably read it all before. I can only confess how I feel. When I watch TNA it reminds me of how happy I felt back in 1999, when I first witnessed an edition of RAW. It’s exciting, it’s new and after just one hour of IMPACT it leaves you thirsty for more.
We in the IWC constantly read in forums, columns and newsletters that TNA has a more advanced wrestling agenda than the WWE. The fact is TNA is simply in a different league. Some of what I’ve seen in the X-Division almost constitutes another sport. There should be little debate on this subject. TNA does have better wrestling. It is TNA’s thrilling in ring action that will be the group’s hook in future television and PPV ventures.
I almost feel guilty about proclaiming my admiration for TNA, like I’ve cheated on a test or played around on my girlfriend. To me, and many thousands of wrestling fans, the WWE is home. In terms of wrestling it’s where I grew up, it’s where I morphed (or should that be mutated) from a mark into a smark. Under the shrine like Titan Tron I’ve experienced every emotion my brain could possibly muster. Like it or not the WWE is in the hearts of us all, and what the majority of smart fans desire is an upturn in the quality of its product. That’s why we write columns, enter forums and fill our days with wrestling debate. We love it, and we want to see the premier name in this business back to its best.
Unfortunately there is small, angry and paranoid minority who disagree. I have read and heard several ill constructed comments that do nothing but rip the WWE product to pieces. It is easy for us in the IWC to meticulously nit pick at every single sh*tty aspect of WWE programming. Yet there is a difference between constructive give and take criticism and an angry soap box ramble. Therefore instead of bullsh*t and wrestle rants we in the IWC have a different and more rewarding task at hand, support the alternative, and force the change.
I have several friends I consider as marks, like me they enjoy WWE programming. Also like me they have moans and groans about the promotion’s short comings. It is these fans, the marks, the casual passing trade that the IWC have to listen to. So instead of constant WWE bashing, we should try and nudge these fans towards TNA, and listen to what they think. So start handing out your IMPACT tapes. ‘Check it out, it’s only an hour, see what you think’. If we spread the word, then we can help give the passing fan an actual choice.
Just as the WWE changed what we would consider the ‘mainstream’ of wrestling, there is no reason why within the next five years TNA could not do the same. The wrestling alternative need no longer be a niche attraction, TNA could be the main event. I personally have no desire to see the WWE fall, and I would like to state for the record that as a natural optimist I love to watch the WWE product. What I do want to see is their reaction to a direct threat, because when threatened, Vince is dangerous, and that means some dam good TV.
It is only the continued support of TNA that will change this industry for the better. With TNA moving to Spike TV, the wrestling business is developing some potentially lucrative forward momentum. If we fast forward five years from now and think of TNA wrestling action, combined with WWE storytelling and presentation, then we maybe looking forward to a new golden era in the grappling biz.
As things stand the WWE is still in a comfort zone. On the December 5th edition of Raw they scored a healthy rating of 4.1. In comparison the December 4th edition of TNA IMPACT reached a 0.8. For TNA this is positive, but it won’t shake the foundations of Titan Towers. There is a long road ahead, but the pot of gold at the end will be worth the journey.
As we come to the end of another wrestling year there has still been no smoking gun. Yet as the likes of Christian head for the Orlando sun it is only a matter of time before the whispers of TNA cause some serious ass twitching in Connecticut. At the climax of 2005, the gun is in the hand, how long will it be before someone pulls the trigger?
‘Opinions are like assholes, they’re all full of sh*t’ (Scott Steiner)
Something for the narrow minded to think about.
As always I’m open to any feedback.
Have a news tip? Attended an event and want to send a live report?