Posts Tagged wwe

WWE: Why Wrestling Onscreen Authority Figures Need To Go Away

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Sometimes when you’re watching the world of professional wrestling, you wonder who is in charge here? Authority figures have been a staple of professional wrestling since its very inception with the NWA Board of Directors. However, in 1997 the concept of the authority figure begin to change it to an on screen role. The boss became the onscreen focus and the catalysts that puts the product forward into the forefront of pop-culture. Epic battles between Vince McMahon and “Stone Cold” Steve Austin symbolized the struggle of the workingman against the corporate overlords. WCW tried the same thing with Eric Bischoff and the nWo to some modicum of success. After these feuds saw their climax each company would attempt many different permutations on the same formula with evil general managers and commissioners There were some good roles during that time but often they just look like background noise. As time drew on it just felt more and more irrelevant.

This is no more evident than with the current Triple H corporate storyline in WWE. What exactly are the general managers doing except bending to the will of the current COO? What purpose do they serve? All it does is create artificial strife where there is none. Your heat should not be with the management itself, instead the focus should be your opponent. More often than not, the authority figure are the main antagonist of the show. And that doesn’t make any sense that means your babyface will never overcome the obstacle of his/her boss. Especially when one corrupt authority figure replaces another, and another and another.

If you need anymore example on why this is a bad thing, check out this week’s Smackdown in which Triple H again emasculates three of the top babyfaces in the company in the Miz, Dolph Ziggler and the Big Show. Every time the heroes seem to rally up against him he destroys their credibility by pointing out the flaws and making them look like complete incompetents. And it makes me wonder who is going to be the hero to come to the rescue? Are we going to wait for John Cena? Or is Stone Cold Steve Austin to return at Wrestlemania 30? Because you definitely established that the current crop of babyfaces are not up to snuff. TNA is not much better with seeming super na ve and out of touch with their own product. ROH seems to be the only company who gets it right with very minimal interference from matchmaker Nigel McGuinness. Even so, they’ve had their issues with pushy in ring authority figures in the past.

Maybe it’s time the on-screen authority figure goes away and we just hear from the Board of Directors from time to time. Perhaps we can also remove the twenty minutes opening promo starting every week’s television and let the grudges build themselves Let’s forget about these evil corporate overlords and just make feuds between two guys who don’t like each other. Sometimes it’s better to go back to the basics. This format has been around for fifteen years. Do you remember any TV shows that kept the same format for fifteen years?

It’s time for wrestling to evolve past the crutches and try something different. Because it’s just not relevant anymore.. Christian aptly said on Monday night those forget history are doomed to repeat it. These words cannot hit closer to home when it comes to today’s portrayal of the wrestling product. Hopefully they will focus on future endeavors and give the pink slip to the past.

The post WWE: Why Wrestling Onscreen Authority Figures Need To Go Away appeared first on WhatCulture!.

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WWE Superstar Darren Young Reveals That He Is Gay

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TMZ recently caught up with Darren Young at LAX Airport and asked if it was possible for a gay man to succeed in the WWE. Darren Young responded with, “Absolutely. Look at me. I’m a WWE superstar and to be honest with you, I’ll tell you right now, I’m gay. And I’m happy. I’m very happy”

Darren Young coming out makes him the first openly gay, contracted WWE superstar of all time. The announcement also makes him the first openly gay superstar from a major professional wrestling organisation. It was a very brave decision and a very bold one and Darren deserves a lot of credit for doing this.

Several WWE and wresting personalities commented on Darren’s big announcement.

Stephanie McMahon: “Congratulations to @DarrenYoungWWE for being the first openly gay WWE Superstar!”

John Cena: “I know Darren personally. Darren’s a great guy. That’s a very bold move for him. And congratulations for him for actually finally doing it.”

“For us, it’s entertainment … and if you’re entertaining you shouldn’t be judged by race, creed, color or sexuality … as long as you’re entertaining.”

Titus O’ Neal: “I’m VERY PROUD of @DarrenYoungWWE He’s been like Family 2Me&My Kids And that won’t Change!
#ImInFullSupportOfDarren”

Triple H: “Congratulations, @DarrenYoungWWE for living YOUR life, YOUR way. #proud”

Rosa Mendes: “@DarrenYoungWWE I’m so proud of you!! See you this week!!”

Gregory Helms: “Good job @DarrenYoungWWE Respect!! Somewhere my friend Kanyon is smiling down.”

Matt Morgan: “ENORMOUS courage out of @DarrenYoungWWE today! U should be very proud of urself Darren! #WhatAGreatExampleForOthers”

Chavo Guerrero: “Huge support for @DarrenYoungWWE !! Great guy & great wrestler! Kudos for @JohnCena supporting comments too”

Congratulations are in order to Darren Young for announcing this and he deserves everyone’s support for doing such a brave thing. Congrats, Darren!

The post WWE Superstar Darren Young Reveals That He Is Gay appeared first on WhatCulture!.

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13 Current WWE Superstars Destined For The Hall Of Fame

WWE Hall of Fame Logo

Whilst the Wrestlemania weekend’s most important focus is on the Sunday night spectacular itself, the day beforehand always has a way to capture the attention of both fans and competitors like no other. The WWE Hall of Fame ceremony is the means to honour those that left it all in the ring for the audience, and earned the respect of their peers and the adulation of the crowd. It is a place where legends such as Steve Austin, Shawn Michaels, Hulk Hogan and Bruno Sammartino have entered with great celebration, but has also seen its fair share of controversial entrants, such as Koko B. Ware, Abdullah the Butcher, and the entire “Celebrity Wing”.

Whilst many are still awaiting the long-overdue induction of legends such as Owen Hart, Jake ‘The Snake’ Roberts, and Randy ‘Macho Man’ Savage, there has developed a long list of superstars currently on the roster that will be certain to be inducted into the hallowed hall upon their departure from full-time competition. These are the superstars that have paid their dues and earned respect through their in-ring prowess, inimitable storytelling, and their connection with the audience, either as a heel or face. These are the superstars who have a reserved spot in the Hall of Fame (barring any freak revelations). Some will not be as assured as others, and some will not have merited it by the standards of the fans. But, if Drew Carey can get into the Hall of Fame then anybody can. So here is my list of those currently signed to the company that will likely be a part of the celebrated ceremony in the future.

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TNA Bound For Glory 2013: 8 Matches That Could Happen

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We are only three months away from TNA/Impact Wrestling’s biggest show of the year. Bound for Glory is the stage that all TNA wrestlers look to, to make their mark on the company. The Aces & Eights are still running wild and one can only think that they will have the great fall at the show of shows for TNA.

I’m taking a look at what I think the card will be/should be with a sense of realism. Based on the current directions of storylines I think I’ve come up with a reasonable card and one I wouldn’t mind seeing.

So please, click “next” to begin my card for the biggest show in TNA, Bound for Glory!

TNA World Title

8. Bully Ray vs. AJ Styles

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This one, I think, is a definite. Bully Ray versus AJ Styles for the TNA World title is my pick to headline the show. The Aces & Eights have been running wild and Bully Ray has shown to be one of the most entertaining heels in company history. Bully has put on some decent matches as champion and has cut great promo after great promo. I don’t see Bully losing this title before Bound for Glory but if he does, I definitely seeing him regaining it before October.

On the other side, you have AJ Styles: the lone wolf of TNA. Having deciding on not joining Aces & Eights, Bad Influence, & TNA, AJ Styles has been on his own and who better to save TNA than the guy who helped make it famous? AJ Styles has been a favorite since the inception of the company and I think it’s all going to rely on him to save TNA from Aces & Eights and the reign of Bully Ray.

The post TNA Bound For Glory 2013: 8 Matches That Could Happen appeared first on WhatCulture!.

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WWE: Kaitlyn Is Released With Immediate Effect

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WWE has announced the following departure today;

“As of Jan. 8, Kaitlyn (Celeste Bonin) will no longer be under contract with WWE. The former Divas Champion has chosen to pursue other endeavors outside the sports-entertainment world. WWE wishes Kaitlyn the best in all her future endeavors.”

Kaitlyn is due to face AJ Lee on Main Event tonight but will no longer be appearing in any future WWE shows.

Regarding her departure, it isn’t really surprising. The former Diva Champion has vanished into irrelevancy over the last six months. After being featured quite prominently in 2013 and the first half of 2014, she has struggled to find a role among the success of AJ’s title run and the Total Divas cast (of which she was not chosen to be part of, a telling sign right there) who dominate Raw TV time. At times it has been hard to distinguish if Kaitlyn was a heel or a face as creative tried to accommodate her into some airtime across Raw and Smackdown. Both parties have now obviously concluded there is nowhere to go from here.

Coming from an athletic bodybuilding background, Kaitlyn was ok in the ring. However it was her good looks are what really helped her achieve relative quick success in the WWE, in memorable feuds with Eve Torres and later AJ Lee. Along the way she won 1 divas championship and was the winner of series 3 of NXT. Her career wasn’t all high points, she was infamously arrested backstage at a WWE live event when police tracked her down for unpaid speeding fines.

As WWE states, may Kaitlyn go on to the “best of luck in her future endeavors”, which will reportedly be outside of the wrestling industry.

Click “next” below to read 8 further wrestlers we expect to be “future endeavoured” in 2014…

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Hulk Hogan Backstage At WWE Network Launch

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In what will be seen as further proof that Hulk Hogan is set to return to WWE, he was reportedly backstage at WWE’s major network announcement in Las Vegas. The fact that Hogan was not used for interviews does however suggest that his contract is not yet fully signed off on. Other former legends such as Steve Austin spent considerable time being used for promotional purposes. There is a possibility that Hogan was in fact at the event to sit down with Vince McMahon afterwards and formally sign off on his Wrestlemania 30 appearance.

The Hulkster is said to have told friends earlier in the week that he would be at the Vegas conference. WWE was well aware he would be showing up backstage, and put the plans in to have him appear for a meeting. Hogan spent most of his time at the event hanging out with his good friend Paul ‘Big Show’ Wight. You can expect him to have spent considerable time behind closed doors with McMahon and Triple H, and his role at Mania was probably discussed. With any luck this deal is very close to getting done, if not already signed off on. Hulk Hogan’s WWE return is imminent.

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WWE News : Survivor Series Buyrate Disaster Analysis

Wwe Survivor Series 2013

The preliminary buyrate for WWE Survivor Series is in, and it isn’t the Christmas present Vince McMahon would have wanted.

The event headlined by Randy Orton vs Big Show drew a measly 179,000 buys. This preliminary number will in time rise, but it is a pretty good indication of the rough region of buys. It makes the 2013 event the worst drawing Survivor Series since the early 90 s, and buys are down from 208,000 in 2012. Here’s a break-down of the event’s recent performance –

2013 – 179,000 buys (early estimate)
2012 – 208,000 buys
2011 – 281,000 buys
2010 – 244,000 buys
2009 – 225,000 buys
2008 – 319,000 buys
2007 – 325,000 buys
2006 – 383,000 buys
2005 – 400,000 buys
2003 – 325,000 buys

It’s a wake up call to WWE after they booked an Autumn series of PPV’s with screwjob finishes – fans will not stand for a bad product. The number also reflects the terrible promotion of the PPV, there was no real thought or selling point in promoting the event. Surely WWE must have known their effort would not be good enough, Big Show vs Orton is hardly an enticing prospect. Why not book The Undertaker on the show as I suggested in a WhatCulture feature and give the event a reason to be bought? They failed in this, and they have got what they deserve with a buyrate under 200k.

What now for the WWE, how do they address this poor performance? I actually don’t think they will be that concerned about it. Vince McMahon lost interest in Survivor Series as a “Big 4 event” many years ago. There was talk a few years back about dropping the event completely, and I suspect they now will eliminate the “Survivor Series” brand from 2014. It’s a bad number, but with the company focusing on a WWE Network launch in 2014, pay per view business is less vital than it once was.

Nevertheless, it doesn’t look good. The poorly promoted “B Level” pay per view Payback did more buys than Survivor Series. The “Big 4 events” in WWE are now Wresltemania, Royal Rumble, Summerslam and Money In The Bank. After a storied history, Survivor Series is now a dead concept.

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WWE: 10 Ways To Address Raw Ratings Disaster

Randy Orton

Even when WWE Raw does a bad rating, it’s still a valuable commodity to the USA network. At three hours the show is an effective stage to sell advertising, and there is little that USA could broadcast in the same slot that would pull the same level of viewership. Raw even in a ratings slump is still an enviable draw. UFC’s Ultimate Fighter series for example would love to do a “bad Raw rating”.

The problem is, when the rating crashes it’s bad for the wrestling business as a whole. There’s no danger of USA network president Chris McCumber kicking Raw from their Monday night slot, but there is a worry that bad ratings mean downward spirals in general. Low TV ratings are a signal of impending poor ppv numbers, drops in merchandise, and various other descents in WWE business streams.

The issue of “ratings disaster” came up this week after Monday’s December 2nd Raw crashed in with just 3,541,000 viewers. That comes in at a 2.65 rating, and the statistical analysis will have Vince McMahon on edge for the rest of the week. The 2.65 number is 10% down from Raw a year ago, and makes Monday’s Raw the least watched episode of 2013. That is a shocking fact when you consider WWE is running one of the biggest angles in years – the champion vs champion feud. What should be an historic time in WWE history is proving uninteresting to the mass audience.

To be honest, Raw was a really dull show this week. But you would have still expected the Orton / Cena angle to draw. The alarming rating may very well have Vince McMahon rethinking this entire angle. Deeper analysis of the rating throws up the true extent of why WWE should be concerned –

For the second week in a row, RAW lost viewers every hour:

Hour 1: 3,616,000
Hour 2: 3,560,000
Hour 3: 3,447,000

The most-watched hour of the broadcast had fewer viewers than the least-watched hour of last week. That is pretty alarming. RAW has lost viewers during each of the past 6 hours it has been on TV. The last Raw to perform so badly was Christmas Eve 2012 (understandably so), and it was October 1st 2012 that a non-holiday Raw last performed so dismally.

All the key players in WWE will now be looking how to address this ratings slump. Here we look at 10 ways the company should act to correct this problem…

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WWE: 10 Superstars Who Desperately Need A Heel Or Face Turn

Ryback

In the run up to Wrestlemania 30, it is important that the WWE has all of its talent well positioned as characters. Now is the time that WWE performers need to be at their very best, as WWE bosses decide on who will get the top Mania spots. For some wrestlers in WWE the best way to freshen up their performance would be a well placed heel turn or face turn.

We saw this happen on Monday Night Raw this week, The Miz turning heel on tag partner Kofi Kingston by leaving him to get beat up in the ring. The character refresh instantly added some much needed relevancy to The Miz as a performer. A face turn can also benefit a character. Take a look at Batista as a classic example. He was the dull uninspiring bodyguard to Triple H in 2004 s Evolution stable. When he eventually turned face on his bullying boss it catapulted Batista into being one of the biggest WWE stars of the 2000s.

A heel or face turn is one of the very best things that can happen to a WWE talent who is struggling to find relevancy. Here we look at Ten WWE superstars who need a heel or face turn…

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Complete History Of WWE Video Games – Part 2 (1996-2001)

Wwf No Mercy

WWE 2K14 hits UK shelves on November 1st this year (Oct 29th in the US). Before the release date, I am taking a walk down wrestling memory lane and providing a look at how the WWE franchise has evolved over the years. Last week I posted my first look back at the Complete History of WWE video games, (READ HERE) which focused on the early years of the franchise from 1987-1995.

The last few games in that article came at a time when the 16-bit era of games was coming to an end and gamers and developers alike were preparing for the next highly anticipated generation of gaming. New games franchises were being created, along with major upheavals to existing ones, with wrestling games being no different. Join me again in this retrospective of WWE gaming and relive how WWE games adjusted to the new “3D Era,” and paved the way for the generations that followed.

1. “WWF: In Your House” (Playstation/Dos/Sega Saturn) 1996

01 In Your House

Like “Wrestlemania The Arcade Game” before it, In Your House is another Mortal Kombat style game, and very similar to that game in almost every way. Again, the wrestlers were caricatures of themselves with crazy moves, over the top taunts and special attacks that fit their character. Instead of wrestling, it was another game that was actually a fighting game featuring wrestlers. Each wrestler had their own arena, much like Mortal Kombat and Street Fighter. They ranged from normal (Bret Hart’s family dungeon, Ahmed Johnson’s locker room) to weirder ones (Undertaker’s crypt, HHH’s mansion) to just plain crazy. Ultimate Warrior’s home arena was some sort of cowboy ranch, which I’m guessing was supposed to be “Parts Unknown.” Shawn Michaels’ fighting arena was a Heart Break Kid nightclub. Even though he’s more used to getting beat up outside them. Despite beng called “In Your House,” no one’s arena was actually a house.

The game featured authentic voiceovers and commentary from Vince McMahon and Curt Hennig, with Vince McMahon’s being particularly over the top to match the tone of the game. For the most part it was a poor sequel to Wrestlemania, with seemingly less effort put forth. It had decent graphics, but not as good as its predecessor and no noticeable improvement in gameplay. Matches could be over in seconds if you mashed the right combination of buttons. 4 Player multiplayer gave it a bit of longevity, but in all In Your House was another less than mediocre game that has understandably mostly been forgotten about.

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