Originally posted by John Powell During Mark Henry's promo on the July 1st Raw, fans mocked him by chanted "What?" in response to his long-winded diatribe.
That night on Twitter, Mick Foley wrote: "Nothing I like less than that stupid 'what' chant. Takes away from the product, throws off the timing on promos, and just flat-out sucks."
Jim Ross also Tweeted: "No more WHAT chants. YES is fine. Fans can chant whatever they want but WHAT chants seem dated too me. Just my opinion."
Here we have two squared circle legends who've made their living playing off of live crowds ripping those people for not reacting the way they want them to. The comments were rather shocking considering they came from two icons who I respect in the highest degree for all of their contributions. They are usually the voices of reason. They are usually the ones who put things in perspective for everyone but those comments were completely unfair.
A pro wrestling event ain't a night at the opera. You can agree or disagree with their reactions but neither of them were in any position to judge those fans, especially when the person cutting said live promo is a heel who is expected to be booed and taunted.
It is a live edition of Raw, which unlike a regular house show, can test the patience of even the most loyal fan due to the constant breaks in the action. On an already bloated telecast, Henry chewed up more match time by explaining his reasons for attacking Cena and his phoney retirement. In the feud, Henry is the heel and Cena is the face.
With all that in mind, how did Foley and Ross expect the fans to react? I just don't get it.
Introducing "What?" to the wrestling vernacular negates every other accolade that Steve Austin may have earned during his career ... but that's just one fan voicing his opinion ;)
My new inappropriate catchphrase: Vinegar, please!
Good talkers can derail the chant by altering their meter. Or they can take the Taker route and bully the audience into compliance. The audience tried to out-WHAT Wyatt last night, but his delivery broke the predictable rhythm, and the air was let out of the chant.
"To be the man, you gotta beat demands." -- The Lovely Mrs. Tracker
There's also something to be said for the fact that certain speakers are so respected that they don't get WHATTED to death. Punk and Heyman never get it. Undertaker doesn't get it anymore (though his promos are a rarity). Even Cena doesn't get it, though that could be because the crowd is too busy yelling other negative things towards him.
"It breaks your heart. It is designed to break your heart. The game begins in the spring, when everything else begins again, and it blossoms in the summer, filling the afternoons and evenings, and then as soon as the chill rains come, it stops and leaves you to face the fall alone." --- Bart Giamatti, on baseball
For what's worth, in the Observer Michaels was quoted from somewhere as saying he's turned down opportunities as heel because he doesn't have that anger in his heart anymore. Obviously, any match with Hogan would have Shawn booed out of the building.