A LETTER TO VINCE McMAHON
Dear Mr. McMahon,
Hi, I'm Tanya. I'm a long standing fan. I've stood by your company during some rough times. Like your current ad campaign states "I was there" when the Higher Power and Val Venis' castration were storylines. I've also seen some great matches and storylines. It seems lately things are, as my supervisor would say, "trending downwards." (ugh, I just used corporatespeak. Shoot me) I've been pondering what is happening and what could be done, like my opinion matters any.
Back when the WWF/E had its first slump, it had a goal in sight. WCW was to be beaten. The urge to win the Monday night war resulted in some creative thinking. Sure, there was some stuff in that time frame better left forgotten, but in the end, things evolved. The changes made then not only brought the WWE back from the near dead, it also influenced the other federations. Would there have been a Goldberg without Austin? The reactions by the competitors reeked of desperation (Asya? Oklahoma?). For some time, Raw was The Show and Nitro the ugly stepsister. All was well in TitanLand.
Then Vince staked the heart of Nitro and bought the corpse. There was no more competition for the WWE. Having sucked the lifeblood from both ECW and WCW, things seemed to be on the verge of something huge. Finally there was one show with the best of all the federations on it (pointedly forgets the brief inclusion of Buff Bagwell). The casual fans were exposed to new people and the long term fans got to see performers on a WWE show they would have never expected. I personally never thought I'd see Tommy Dreamer wearing the WWE logo during a Singapore Cane match. Or Paul Heyman as the mouthpiece of the champion.
Side note. A few days ago I was AIMing with my friend/muse Craig about the various books out there about wrestling. I had recently ordered Missy Hyatt's book from Amazon [blushes] and we were talking about the good (Foley), the bad (Rock) and the unreadable (I slogged through the Angle). We came up with a pretty good list of potential books, but only if they were complete shoots. Flair, Heyman, Cornette, Jericho, and (don't laugh) Al Snow. Hint hint hint .....
Where was I? Oh yes, letter to Vince.
Right now, the WWE has no real competition. Sure, there's NWA-TNA-XWF, if you can find it. There's local indy federations having shows around the big cities. However, if you're looking for the so called big names, your only choice is WWE. My fear is with the lack of a real opponent out there, the creative forces have become complacent. After all, who else is there for the audience to turn to? As the CEO and the person with veto power of storylines, Vince, please strive to keep things fresh. Please make sure the storylines enhance rather than overshadow the matches. After all the name changes, the word "wrestling" is still part of the company name. Keep it in the focus of the company as well.
What inspired me to write this? Two words - Katie Vick. Rest assured I'm not going to follow the well trodden path of blaming Trips and/or calling him the antiChrist. I see enough of that garbage on the various message boards I visit. My gripes are the following:
Whatever Happened to History? Go to http://www.wrestlingclassics.com . Visit their message board and locate a thread by Percival Pringle, aka Paul Bearer. I'm at work, otherwise I'd link to it. In this thread, he goes through the origins of Kane. "But Tanya" you say "history is ignored all the time. Why get bent about this example?" Because it basically throws away the established history of a long standing character for some short term shock value. As a long term fan, I'm aggravated. The short term fans I speak to are confused. "Who is this girl and why should I care? And did he really just say they found THAT on her body? EWWWW" was said to me via AIM Monday night.
Now on the mic, the Cottonmouth Kings! Of all the storylines and all the wrestlers, why pick Kane and Triple H, neither known for their mastery of the mike, to try to sell this? While you're at it, have Jeff Hardy and Lita do commentary :rolleyes:. Flair's role is Triple H's mentor, why not have him try to sell this? If Heel Flair can sell just by the smile on his face, he could sell this mess a lot better than it's being sold now. Sitting through Trips and his inability to speak a single freaking word without ending it in "ah/eh/uh" is apparently my punishment for previous sins, I guess.
Short Term Booking Makes The Baby Jesus Cry Just imagine four weeks ago, when the world was innocent and pure, for there was no Katie Vick. Better writing/booking could have been to slowly draw this out. Have Trips or preferably Flair allude to Kane's 'secret'. Take the time to build the mystery of what was Kane trying to hide, drop red herrings, make the audience truly curious. Reveal it at a PPV and not on a RAW. Make the crowds wonder what would happen next, not hotshot it at a RAW by having Kane announce his happiness mid show and then have the anvil fall at 10:05pm cst.
Vince, you can do better.
Until later, I'll be working on my Terri halloween costume. I'll be the orange skeleton smuggling beachballs.
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