Are You Not Entertained!? Submitted by Going Broadway on 01/09/2019 at 02:13 PM
New year. Same shit.
A few weeks ago, WWE Management promised sweeping change to the product, apologizing to the fans for not listening to them. (An asinine statement in itself)
While many fans can excuse the last two weeks of the holiday month of December, the first two shows of January will undoubtedly be the kept promise of a product change that fans have been clamoring for, right?
As predicted, weeks have gone by, including the first shows of the new year, and surprise-surprise! Nothing has changed.
It's not even that the show is considerably bad; it's still considerably average -- but the fact it that good, bad, or average, everything that has happened on Raw and Smackdown the last three weeks could have happened over the past few years. It's still a show heavily piped, marketed, and scripted to levels of nausea where nothing overly-exciting or different happens.
You have potential competition that could sweep up the likes of Kenny Omega, Chris Jericho and C.M. Punk (He'll be back...they always come back...) and your response is the same old shit sprinkled with minor fan fare?
Monday and Tuesday's show is the equivalent of a distant father desperately attempting to connect with his step-son.
"You like The Revival, right? Look, son, I got you some Revivals!"
Pairing Finn Balor with John Cena, giving us a recycled main event in Ambrose vs. Rollins, and Sasha Banks as future prey to Ronda Rousey isn't anything new or different. Strowman reciting his only catchphrase to Lesnar certainly did not have me on the edge of my seat, and in fact, made me want Strowman to win the Universal Championship LESS. At this point, I would rather the WWE take a cue from Dramatic Dream Team in Japan, and turn the title into something resembling the Ironman Heavymetalweight Championship -- where such notable champions include a pork bun, a stick of yakitori, Vince McMahon's Hollywood Walk of Fame Star, and a trash can -- which is fitting of the championship, as it represents utter garbage.
Lastly, "Mean" Gene deserved better to be honored by a racist who has done more to hurt to the business than help it, on a desperately mediocre show.
The only positives I can take out of this entire week is the continued build of Daniel Bryan's evolving erratic character, and the solid build of Becky, Asuka and Charlotte.
Even then, it's nothing new or dramatically different -- and the truth is, I don't know if they even know how to.
To do something truly different to please fans is to immediately strip Lesnar of the Universal Championship. Open Raw with a MATCH for once, start a legitimate rankings system where records are kept, as fans have been shifting towards viewing wrestling as a SPORT for a decade now; get rid of over-done and cliche wrestler "talk-shows" and for f***'s sake, move forward and get rid of the McMahons on television.
If you're a General Manager of a failing sports team, you don't keep the head coach. If you're the owner of a failing sports team, you don't keep the General Manager. If you're on the Board of Directors of a failing sports team, you don't keep the owner.
While McMahon, unfortunately, is all of the above, he can do the right thing and hand the product over to someone entirely different -- not Shane, Stephanie, or even Paul Levesque. While I applaud Paul's work in NXT, I have to believe that his ability as a creative booker ends at his ability to simply have a great eye for talent, which he undoubtedly has.
However, all of this will never happen, and the mediocrity will continue under the mask that placing Finn Balor and other fan-favorites in an occasional main event will actually mean something when it doesn't.
In all honesty, I think what many fans truly want, is a new brand of wrestling. Something maybe, possibly "all elite".