(With no [/] right now, I figured I'd post this here, rathe than have it go to waste.)
Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
“I don't want you, But I hate to lose you, You've got me inbetween the devil and the deep blue sea.” -- Cab Calloway and His Orchestra
You’re asking, which is which. Is Bischoff the Devil or is Russo? What about Stephanie McMahon? Or Vince himself? Does it really matter? It’s all the same to me.
Sure, it was nice to be surprised for once on a Monday night. No one knew Easy E would be showing up on RAW, as its “new General Manager.” But you know what? They don’t tell you when you’re going to have a heart attack either, and this was almost as bad.
The best word to describe what I felt was crestfallen. I had just gotten my hopes up, with Vince expelling Russo only days after bringing him in, apparently because Copernicus was out of touch with WWE storylines. Well, I guess he wasn’t THAT out of touch, if he suggested bringing in Bischoff. Vince just didn’t want anyone to know about the SHOCKING SWERVE to come.
As for Stephanie McMahon’s return to television, we knew she would return at some point, like a bad rash (or something worse, given her strumpet character). So, I’m not horribly angry at her return, just disappointed. It’s better than Dusty, after all.
What about Russo’s arrival in Nashville, so ironic since he hates the South? Well, in the first week, things weren’t that bad. Personally, I have absolutely no faith that the company will continue to build around the “X” division, which is the one thing that could bring viewers back week after week.
What’s a wrestling fan to do? Give up? I can’t blame anyone who feels that way, especially if you’ve invested time and effort into being a fan of the business. I certainly began pulling away from North American wrestling weeks ago. And now, I don’t even know if getting to watch Chris Benoit or Eddy Guerrero or Kurt Angle or Jerry Lynn is enough to sit through Bischoff, Stephanie, Vince and whatever horrible new characters Vince Russo will create in Nashville.
Well, here’s my suggestion. The cost of a WWE PPV will get you plenty of imported wrestling from one of the many tape traders out there. Or, take that money, get DirecTV and watch CMLL on Saturday afternoons. You could always trade for old tapes. No matter how bad the booking was back in the day, you can’t erase the quality wrestling to be found in 1989 WCW, 1983-6 Mid-South or 1983-85 World Class.
For those of us who prefer wrestling the “sport” over wrestling the “spectacle,” we may have just lost a big battle. But, the war isn’t over. It’s just time to hunker down and look for alternatives. But if you’re one of the people who just want to throw up your hands and say, “Enough is enough,” good luck and god speed.
“The function of a good teacher is to discourage film as a course of study for the non-avid. There are film societies and cinemas galore for the serious non-film student.” – Robert Steele, “Film Scholars at the New York Film Festival,” FILM COMMENT 2, Fall 1964, p. 41, as quoted in It’s Only a Movie, by Raymond J. Haberski Jr.
Good Column Odessa. I have to think I will give SmackDown on Thursday a vatch, and then I am going to a local bar to watch Vengeance. I will give the WWE a chance, but if it is as bad as I am afraid it will be, Sunday may be my last viewing of WWE after 16 long years of viewing.
WWE SUNDAY NIGHT HEAT WORKRATE REPORT – 1/11/04 (by PHIL RIPPA) I had hoped to get this out before the Raw report showed up but I be lazy. It’s a weird show in that one match took up an ENORMOUS amount of time.