What’s Bothering Me? (In Professional Wrestling)

Nick Paglino

#2. Lack of Umbrella Storylines

I like weekly, episodic tv shows.  Lost, 24, Fringe.  Anyone remember Jericho?  GREAT show.  

In wrestling's heyday, it was the nWo's week-to-week progress that kept us glued to our television sets every Monday night.  It was Vince McMahon vs Steve Austin at the same time.  These umbrella storylines that carried over perfectly from one week to the next gave professional wrestling fans that "can't wait" feeling.  Where are they now?

WWE seems to try it still every once in a while, but then they pull the rug out from under it before it ever has a chance to go anywhere.  Nexus?  That had everyone buzzing for weeks.  Then..they stopped buzzing.  WWE dropped it before it ever began and now it's merely a footnote in the history book rather than the headline chapter it could have been.

CM Punk even more recently.  When he defeated Cena at MitB and successfully took the WWE Championship away from the company on his way out, the entire world was waiting to see what would happen next.  Slight exaggeration, sure, but it was big.  That one story set the stage for months of aftermath and continued follow-up.  But rather than maximizing that story's (and Punk's) potential, they rushed him back to tv, had him lose the title at the next pay per view and as a result, made him "just another guy".  

Look at how Raw ended this week.  Typical.  One main event participant standing over the other (in this case, others) after he gets the better of them physically to go home to that weekend's pay per view.  Remember when Raw ended with a gun shot at Brian Pillman's home?  Or when Nitro ended with Sting laying out the entire nWo with just a baseball bat?  

I'm not saying it can happen "every" week, but it's the umbrella storylines that allow for it to happen when it does.  Fans have to care about it too.

Maybe WWE is getting ready to try again with the expected return of Vince McMahon and rumors of a new faction forming soon.  I officially wait with bated breath starting…now.

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