Originally posted by JustinShapiroLesnar, St. Pierre, Evans, Jackson, Couture, and Liddell haven't taken a severe hit.
The "Lidell taking a severe hit" joke is RIGHT THERE.
If we compare UFC to the WWE, the WWE suffers from putting its main-eventers in matches every week. In my day, as PPVs were just coming into vogue, we young fans HAD to buy them to see matches we'd never seen on Tuesday Night Titans or Lord Alfred Hayes Sunday morning show.
The UFC might show a themed episode of a particular fighter's career on Spike for free or an upper midcarder might headline a UFC Fight Night, but you don't get their bigger names on live TV each week. Yes, they have to rest and prepare for real fights, but it preserves their commodity for their next appearance. There's little risk of over saturation (except for the UFC's "Brocktober" marketing for his next fight).
I wonder if UFC is taking more pie away from the PPVs of wrestling or boxing. An equal helping from both?
(edited by Matt Tracker on 5.10.10 0959)
Good job with the bulls-eye Mr. Tracker; back even say 10 years ago or so, you would have to pay for the PPV's to see Austin, Rock, and the other top-tier guys wrestle and continue their feud or ignite a new one. How often did Rock and Austin fight? 3 times on PPV I believe? When you saw these guys wrestle or get ready to fight on a PPV, there was anticipation because you didn't see these 2 feud all too often.
Now we have seen the same feuds weekly on Raw or Smackdown and to shell out the extra cash is mostly a waste on money because you can see the continuation of the feud on regular television and see the main guys every week instead of on PPV's. Good point to bring up why UFC is doing well with its ratings and product as a whole (with the main guys rarely seen except on the PPV's).
The WWE product as whole has greatly diminished but why do they care? They haven't had real competition in terms of ratings since when WCW was at its peak and the WWE actually to work to improve its product.
Originally posted by redsoxnationThis is where PG comes into play, as these writers were generally hired with a background in a context that was more adult oriented. Thus, not only are these writers out of their element in terms of wrestling, they are even further out of their element by forcing them to work within restraints.
So what it comes down to is that they've hired shitty writers. As a writer myself, it has always annoyed me to no end whenever someone was let go because "creative had nothing for them." If creative has nothing for someone, it's because creative isn't creative. It might be slightly more challenging to write compelling storylines in a PG environment, but only because the less talented writers aren't able to rely on shock tactics as a crutch.
I've never quite agreed with Storm's assessment that the problem is storyline vs angle, though. I've always been of the opinion that nobody has every written a truly compelling storyline. There have been storylines with great moments, sure, but I can't think of any where a good portion of the story as a whole was crap.
I do think storylines can lead up to and focus on a match, but it has to be a match that will be worth watching. Rocky (Balboa, not Maivia) would be the apex example of that. Nobody would ever recommend skipping the fight in Rocky and just moving on to Rocky II to find out what happened.
I disagree with no one has ever written compelling storyline. Steamboat/Savage was compelling, the NWO was compelling, Austin/McMahon was compelling, Eddie and Benoit's quest for the belt was compelling. Even this year's Taker/Shawn match was compelling. The problem is the product is no longer cool. Its seen as childish, fake and boring. While UFC is where are all the cool kids are going and spending their money.
While I agree to a point with Lance that the storyline seems to be more important then actually building towards a match at the PPV. It was and has been an insider joke in the IWC for people who spend the money for the PPV when you are known what happened via online or the next night on Raw. Yet, people do, because we want to see something special happen before everyone else. Its one thing to read it online, its another experience it with a group of people around a TV set. WWE has to find a way to make the matches feel special again.
The problem in that way is the writing as well as the fact, we are burnt out of the current wrestlers. Orton, HHH, Cena, Edge and others have pretty much done it all, its no longer special. Swagger, Sheamus and CM Punk have gotten title reigns that financially have amounted to little or nothing. Their title wins were seen as flukes and were done as heels. They need a face who people want to see chase the belt for awhile and eventually win it. It should take awhile instead of the standard three to four weeks to build a match then move to something else. They have no face who can be a Hogan, Austin or Rock, because everything is mirco-managed to the point of absurdity. Like I said earlier, they need to go back to a little crash TV where wrestlers are allowed to be themselves.
I have a take on all this, which I think is not so much adding a new idea as kind of joining some of the thoughts together.
One thing that crops up throughout the thread, in various ways, is the lack of variety. I think that may in fact be the biggest issue. The matches don't stand out from each other, and the PPV matches don't stand out from those on the weekly TV.
I submit that one reason for that is that WWE no longer has a really viable competitor. WWE has long had a certain "style" that it pushes on the wrestlers it develops. (No news there, I know.) But at its peak, it also had a lot of top stars who hadn't really been inculcated with that style. Guys like Benoit, Eddy, and Jericho came over from WCW with a more technical, workrate-based style. Rey also came from WCW (and Mexico) with the whole high-flying thing, sometimes joined by midcard guys like Kidman (and by the WWE-grown Hardyz). Meanwhile, Foley and the Dudleys were from ECW and brought over the more hardcore style. I'm only talking about the broad brush, but there were more subtle differences involved as well. Of course, many of the top guys were still WWE guys, but this way there was variety in their matches (Rock-Foley was going to be different from Rock-Jericho, and both would be different from Rock-HHH) and variety within the card as well.
So, now, the wrestlers don't vary as much as style. Sure, Jericho (at least until recently) and Rey are still near the top, but they are working more with "WWE style guys", and of course Rey can't fly like he used to. There are other exceptions, but not to the level there once was. And then there are other things that limit the variety in matches. There's no cruiserweight division anymore, and the tag division isn't treated as being important. Moreover, guys aren't allowed to use blood or other "extreme" tactics, and health concerns have taken away a lot of moves and potential bumps. (Of course, that last one is a good thing--given the choice between lower buyrates and long-term health problems, I certainly want them to choose the former. But it does create a problem for the on-air product.)
So, I think, they try to compensate by varying the storylines. But there are limits to that, because then they're trying to stand out not only from the rest of the card, but in a sense from the rest of the entertainment world as well.
So I think they need to find ways to bring more variety to the show. Giving the tag division a serious push would help. Even more so would be letting guys like CM Punk bring more of their indie backgrounds into the ring, instead of trying to make them fit the cookie-cutter mode. But it would also be helpful to them if they had a viable competitor, if the one somewhat-viable competitor they had wasn't aping their style, and if there were an ECW-level promotion out there that was innovating in some way.
Originally posted by lotjx I disagree with no one has ever written compelling storyline. Steamboat/Savage was compelling, the NWO was compelling, Austin/McMahon was compelling, Eddie and Benoit's quest for the belt was compelling. Even this year's Taker/Shawn match was compelling.
Also, it doesn't help that every match that has an 'up and comer' vs an 'established star', 99% of the time, the 'established star' wins, but the WWE (and the IWC) see it as 'giving them the rub' with a lot of offense or some such nonsense excuse (or what I call 'every PWTorch review of RAW')
Kevin Kelly: "Mr. Austin, would you like to comment on Wade Keller's Take that endorsing the XFL hurts your anti-authority character?"
Steve Austin: "Oh shit, he actually said that? I thought the boys in the back were ribbing me!"
Kelly: "No, he really said that. Did they tell you the part about you sitting in the stands, looking all skeptical?"
Austin: "AHAHAHAHAHAHA. Yeah... oh man that was too much."
As a wrestler, I like the guy as an entertainer. I think his offense which consists mostly of shoulder blocks, needs some work to look more effective, but he sells pretty well for a big guy. And perhaps most importantly, he doesn't blow spots.