WWE has issued a release stating that the weekly Talking Smack was cencelled, followed by a release saying it will continue after SD PPVs.
Major bummer. Renee also apparently learned of this on Twitter, which sounds about right.
Best thing they had going on the Network. It was exactly the kind of show you'd envision out of a 24/7 WWE network. The hosts, especially when it was Renee and Daniel, excelled and it was typically the best performances any of the guests ever had.
Unforunate. It was legitimately their best show at times and both Renee and Daniel Bryan are going to be pretty much irrelevant as backstage interviewer/GM now. Talking Smack pretty much launched Alexa Bliss's career and revitalized The Miz and lots of others did their best work there, including Cena.
It was also announced that the WWE is no longer doing pyro for their entrances as a cost cutting move. I'm curios if they are trying to cut money elsewhere in order to avoid their usual annual roster cuts because I'm surprised it hasn't happened yet. The roster is pretty bloated. I'm all for indy wrestlers get their shot at the WWE but I think they went overboad with signing too many people. The NXT roster is like 50-75 people.
(edited by Quezzy on 14.7.17 1707) Lance's Response:
So bloated, and you know we are going to get at least five signings out of the womens' tournament (which is good, THAT division could use some more additions - though really Asuka, Peyton & Billie Kay and probably Ember are ready at any time to move up).
I noticed the pyro not happening at MITB and again at Great Balls. I wonder if it'll still happen for bigger shows like SummerSlam. Of course it'll be there at WrestleMania, when we will also blow the budget on Flo Rida and several other musical acts.
Dumb. Just dumb. The Network needs content that is original. This is one of five shows if you count the tournaments which I don't. You cannot be a network with only four steady hours of original programing each week. CW has ten and we treat it like its a passing thought.
Getting rid of the one almost universally well-received main roster show that they have seems about right for the state of the company today. All the talent in the world and not only no idea how to use it, but an almost willful drive to squander it.
If anything, they should have gone the exact opposite way with this. Talking Smack, as a format, was clearly freeing up a lot of talent to actually develop or at least finally present charisma and presence and was a sorely-needed antidote to the suffocating staleness of the regular shows. They need change, and they need it badly, and this was something different - but not in a drastic, scary way - that was showing results as far as turning their talented workers into interesting characters worth watching.
The move, I think should have been to stop making Smackdown into Raw II and instead, use the Talking Smack set-up to make the show into a 21st century update of Prime Time Wrestling. Let Bryan and Renee host in the backstage set-up like they had it, but instead of throwing to pre-taped matches like Gorilla and Heenan, they throw it to the live matches happening in the arena, and are backstage to do follow-up interviews with the winners and losers. It would give continuity to the show (unlike Raw, where 95% of the people vanish as soon as their match ends) but would be a comfortable throwback to things that worked even pre-Attitude era. And it wouldn't feel too old school with Bryan and Renee proving that they can work and keep it interesting in a live setting where everyone is free to breathe a little.
All of their instincts about how to use the Network for presentation have felt wrong so far. Getting rid of the sadly short-lived post-PPV press conferences was a terrible first step, and this is probably the logical end result: they are terrified of anything interesting or organic happening, even though those are almost always the most fun, popular and audience-engaging moments.
It's also baffling that they have almost no idea of how to use the Network as way to make the "WWE Universe" seem like an actual thing. Angles should start on Network-only shows that they can show clips of later to make it seem like the characters don't just get packed into crates when Raw ends. And showing clips of something important/amazing/fun that happens on a Network-show during off hours would be an incentive to, you know, subscribe to the Network.
It's also weird and less explicable that they're wasting Renee as much as they are. She seems like pretty much the only modern talent who has figured out how to sell the worked-sport aspect of the product that should be at its core in presentation today, but they have no idea what to do with the whole concept.
Originally posted by Dr UnlikelyGetting rid of the sadly short-lived post-PPV press conferences was a terrible first step
Man, I do still miss those. They absolutely made Big E for me, well before the company decided that New Day was a Big Thing.
Originally posted by Dr Unlikelythey are terrified of anything ... organic happening
I think that's it exactly. This is a company that's terrified of anything happening that they didn't preordain. People are supposed to love Roman Reigns, and Alexa Bliss was not supposed to be a star. Like, they're definitely running with her, but you'd better believe somebody got real mad about her being the breakout when they drafted her like second-to-last on the Network-only draft special. When things don't go according to the vision, it alarms them.
Originally posted by Dr UnlikelyIt's also weird and less explicable that they're wasting Renee as much as they are. She seems like pretty much the only modern talent who has figured out how to sell the worked-sport aspect of the product
Renee might just be the most talented person on the entire roster, including the in-ring talent. She's somebody who really gets pro wrestling, and more importantly, the way that fans react to pro wrestling. Which, I guess, see my above point.
Not including the context of Flair's firing from WCW in 1991 and suspension in 1998, which are universally famous wrestling stories, kind of belie the idea that this work consisted of more than spending a day at the courthouse.