Raw is Rock But Not Solid: Thoughts on the WWE Product

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WWE served up another episode of Monday Night Raw that spun its wheels before it was saved with a surprise appearance by The Rock. While the great one’s appearance is just what the doctor ordered, it also highlighted some of the glaring holes in the company’s current creative direction and talent roster.

 

The fan in me wants to damn the current product to hell. There are a few bright spots, but they can’t dwarf the black hole of segments such as Kathie Lee and Hoda breaking wine bottles over each other’s ass and a mini gator fighting a mini bull. The audience in Brooklyn chanted “This is stupid” while fans took to social media and voiced their vehement displeasure for the cartoon shenanigans over engaging and competitive action. I get a kick out of El Torito and Hornswoggle isn’t too shabby, but it’s not completely their fault that the match was mind-numbingly awful. A different direction, script or overall plan could have produced laughs instead of the groans.

 

I don’t know who’s to blame. Vince McMahon, Stephanie McMahon, Triple H, the many writers on staff, or all of the above. Whatever programming has been approved to air from 9:00 pm – 11:05 pm EST is not conducive of prime time television. The ratings are in decline and the archaic excuse of Monday Night Football being a factor has reared its ugly head. There are too many television shows to choose from today and when something feels like a chore to watch, it’s time to change the channel. Personally, I got tired of what I was being fed and watched the Batman prelude series, Gotham.

 

The Rock taking out Rusev was loads of fun and brought me back to my rabid attitude era fandom. However, it also shows how far Monday Night Raw has fallen when a promo about a travel itinerary can get a much bigger reaction than anything else being done. Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins have been the saving grace of the show as of late. Hell in a Cell is right around the corner and I believe that Ambrose is the future of the business. He should go over on John Cena and get his hands on Rollins inside the cell. Cena is still the top guy though, so you know how that can work.

 

Wrestling has had some boring periods during its run as an entertainment genre, but in the 26 years I’ve been a passionate fan, I have never been so dissatisfied with the product as I’m today. I could curse the sky, yell, scream, and swear off WWE television forever. After really thinking about it though, I choose to see this for what it really is. In 2014, WWE programming is a lot like the Star Wars prequels. I can damn it with faint praise, but then I need to take a deep breath and realize that there is no point in getting upset at a show that is isn’t intended for me anymore.

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