If you read my previous article you will know that I was pushing for WWE to take a leap of faith and go in a new direction with the Brock Lesnar vs John Cena match at Night of Champions. Of course, WWE didn’t go in the direction I would like but they didn’t go in a direction I expected either.
A silly finish in which WWE tried to make Cena, Lesnar and Seth Rollins all remain strong, in the end pretty much did the opposite. Ultimately it damaged the reputation they have built for Brock Lesnar. This wasn’t helped by stupid remarks on commentary from people like Jerry Lawler who claimed that Lesnar was on the verge of tapping out before Rollins interfered when in reality he came in to save the pin-fall. Also, it was missed that when Rollins broke the pin to cause the disqualification, Lesnar was raising his shoulder off the mat for the two count and was nowhere near the STF. Yet commentators were so convinced that John Cena would have won at that very moment. WWE could have made a terrible booking less horrific by at least stating facts that happened on the screen.
Either way, it was still terrible. I have watched WWE religiously since 1996 and I have never felt so drained watching todays product. I could seriously skip watching Smackdown and watching about 40 minutes worth of content from RAW and I wouldn’t be missing anything. I can’t defend the product like I felt I could do in the past. I don’t look forward to watching RAW every week and sometimes it takes me more than one effort to watch the whole thing (even with fast forwarding adverts)
This weeks RAW would have been a good show if you had just booked the IC Title match, AJ/Paige segment, Paul Heyman and the Dean Ambrose MITB case segment. If the show was 2 hours long (80 minutes without commercials) then that content would have been sufficient. Instead, we get 3 hours which include nonsense such as another tag team main event, a trending Bunny, Bella’s arguing, Bella’s wrestling, Jamie Nobles hotdog fetish, Natalya seeking attention, Big Show playing with a flag and a gator-roll. All unnecessary, and the parts of these segments which do advance current storylines, could have been done on Smackdown.
The only thing I genuinely enjoy watching in WWE at the moment is Damien Sandow, Brock Lesnar and Dean Ambrose. Sandow is taking himself lightly and ultimately being entertaining, Ambrose is a perfect blend of Brian Pillman and Steve Austin and Lesnar recently has been the legitimacy the industry has needed for quite some time.
Ambrose stands out at the moment; he’s unpredictable and so relaxed on the microphone. You need to see what he’s going to do next because you have no idea, he’s original and fresh. He’s someone who isn’t in the traditional WWE mould unlike Sheamus and Randy Orton who personify boredom at the moment.
It’s disappointing because the actions taken with Lesnar have been genuinely interesting yet WWE have now taken him off TV and he is hardly mentioned. It weakens him and after WWE took such big steps to make him stand out they have made it as hard as possible to do the most natural thing – have your biggest athlete be completely dominant.
It all looks set to continue, Hell in a Cell is next and without Lesnar in sight it seems some alternative with Ambrose, Cena and Rollins is in the mix. None of it excites me.
It worries me greatly because the product I’ve grown up and watched seems to be slowly ebbing away. I can’t even purchase the WWE Network here in the UK and revel in previous years to keep me happy. Overall, WWE is treading water and this fan is simply watching out of loyalty rather than interest. How long before all those loyal wrestling fans say enough is enough?
WWE, you’re at a point in your history where you need to break barriers with your content as well as your business decisions. The network is great, your current product isn’t. Make your product great and your Network will flourish.
Are you disappointed with the product? Is the cold I am currently enduring effecting my judgement? Let me know on Twitter @BeansOnToastUK or email me at email@example.com