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MR. TITO STRIKES BACK - What the Hell is Wrong with WWE's Extreme Rules Pay Per View?
By Mr. Tito
May 8, 2013 - 11:04:44 PM
So are you, the wonderful LordsofPain.net / WrestlingHeadlines.com readers, ready for WWE Extreme Rules 2013?!? Such a wonderful card (sarcasm) and really makes you want to shell out another piece of your paycheck after buying this year's uneventful Wrestlemania 29. For one, you get an awesome (sarcasm) rematch between Brock Lesnar vs. Triple H. The first 2 matches weren't that spectacular, but for this time, it's EXTREME~!. We're in the CAGE this time around! Although for this time around, Triple H isn't putting his part-time career in the ring on the line. WWE is paying $5 Million per year for Brock Lesnar to lose to John Cena and to wrestle Triple H 3 times.
Then there's John Cena vs. Ryback, which is match # 848372774774 that the drive-by Internet Wrestling Community (IWC) has either advised or predicted will be the MOMENT when John Cena turns heel. Yeah right. Let's just flush the WWE's #1 money maker draw down the drain. Go to a WWE Houseshow and (a) count the number of kids and (b) count how many of those kids are wearing John Cena gear. DUUHHHHHHH! Go look at a WWE Financial Statement at SEC.gov or through WWE.com. READ IT! Then imagine if John Cena, who is a huge draw with the younger fans, is gone. Who picks up the pieces? Younger fans do NOT cheer for heels... The "cool" adult fans do.
The problem is NOT John Cena as a babyface. The problem is his dance partner, the lack of Joker to his Batman.
If you look at Cena's career, his best moments were when he had a STRONG heel in opposition. Basically, John Bradshaw Layfield before his WWE Title run, Edge when he turned "Rated R Superstar", Chris Jericho when Cena retired him, I'd probably argue Triple H/Shawn Michaels although those were more about the matches than the heat, CM Punk during 2011 before WWE sabotaged Punk, the Rock for big Wrestlemania dream matches, and then Brock Lesnar following Wrestlemania 28. Other than that, utter crap for his opponents. Poorly booked opponents who couldn't draw heat and even come close to matching John Cena's drawing power.
Which brings us to failed John Cena experiment # 4929499449395885, Ryback. Throughout 2012, the WWE manufactured this guy to be the next Bill Goldberg. Those "Goldberg" chants are deserved because it's the one case where the WWE might have actually reviewed their extensive video library to steal past ideas. However, Ryback is NOT Bill Goldberg. Goldberg had a thing called "charisma" that Mr. Ryback lacks and Goldberg dominating wrestlers with a streak was original back during 1998. It's NOT in 2012-2013 and Ryback is a charismatic dud. He's NOT drawing because the WWE bookers are telling fans that Ryback is a badass instead of the fans telling the WWE "we believe he's a badass". That's the difference. Fans were 100% behind Goldberg in 1998 but they aren't for the artificial character known as Ryback.
WWE, possibly recognizing this error, is trying to turn Ryback HEEL... But you don't just change a character AND give him a World Title shot AT THE SAME TIME. Things take time to develop in the wrestling business. WWE spent many months trying to push Ryback as a main event FACE, hoping for instant results there. That's NOT how the wrestling business works. Go watch that damn video library and see how EVERY great wrestler was built up. The end result of instantly pushing Ryback to a WWE Title challenge after LOSING at Wrestlemania 29 is a flat feud. Nobody cares. He wasn't ready to draw on his own yet so why bother with a World Title shot? That goes for the majority of the wrestlers that the WWE tries to push these days.
Like Alberto Del Rio and Jack Swagger. Never in my life have I seen a wrestling promotion try so hard to push ineffective wrestler to the top like I have with the WWE's Smackdown writers. Amazing. Instead of giving Del Rio time to earn the fans' trust and affection after turning babyface, the WWE shoves the World Heavyweight Title on him during an episode of Smackdown. Mind you, this comes after 2011 when the WWE shoved the WWE Title on him after the main event of SummerSlam 2011 with the stupid Money in the Bank cash-in. Remember, the WWE did this because they wanted Del Rio as champion for a Mexico tour which did nothing for the WWE long-term (especially when the WWE tours mostly in the United States). The guy didn't draw flies when you shoved the World Title on him in 2011, so what tells you things will improve with equally bad booking in 2013? Why can't Del Rio develop as a midcarder face, first, before becoming a World Champion?
Why is there such shame at being an Intercontinental or United States Champion? Go look at Steve Austin, Rock, and John Cena's years before their first WWE Title runs!
And then we have Jack Swagger... Why exactly is he even included in the Extreme Rules 3 Way match of Dolph Ziggler vs. Alberto Del Rio vs. Jack Swagger??? The conflict here is that Dolph Ziggler cashed in his Money in the Bank title shot against Alberto Del Rio, which is independent of Swagger's world or intentions. Swagger had his shots against Del Rio and failed. The psychology is that you take a step back, beat a few other opponents, and try again later. Del Rio has heat with Ziggler and Ziggler only. Why on earth did the WWE had Swagger to this World Title match???
It's not like Swagger's new "WE THE PEOPLE" gimmick is doing wonders for the WWE. Nobody cares. Even when the WWE convinced conservative talk radio host, Glenn Beck who is ranked within the top 10 for highest radio ratings nationwide (8th?), to comment on Swagger, nobody cared. WWE tried to milk those Glenn Beck's comments by having the Zeb Colter character directly address Glenn Beck and even challenge Beck to appear at the very next edition of Monday Night RAW. Nobody cared. Nobody cared when Colter and Swagger tried to piggyback on the Illegal Immigration hotbed political issue despite it being heavily debated now in the United States Congress. For one, fans weren't compassionate for Del Rio as a face to get upset and two, Swagger/Colter's heat was cheap and forced. They weren't naturally getting over as heels but trying to force it with scripted lines. Nobody gave a damn about the Wrestlemania 29 match itself.
Why should anybody even care about a repackaged Jack Swagger? He was a LOSER according to 2011-2012, especially 2012. The WWE Creative Team and their infinite wisdom had him lose repeatedly during 2012 with a historically bad losing record. So what do they do? Have him take a few months off and return as a phony right-wing conservative character. Problem is that they forced the new character down our throats AND as a Main Eventer. Why can't this new Swagger character prove himself first as a reliable and possibly drawing United States or Intercontinental Champion before you test him out as a World Title contender? Ohhhhhh nooooo..... WWE had Swagger win the Elimination Chamber 2013 title shot and go after the World Heavyweight Title at Wrestlemania 29. Great rushed booking, WWE. You wonder why HE'S NOT OVER?!?
Let's stop this World Heavyweight Title = NEW Intercontinental Title discussion. If so, let's rename the damn belt. Say the name of the title out loud... WORLD... HEAVYWEIGHT... title. For the possible sake of keeping the big gold belt alive for merchandise sales, the WWE keeps this World Heavyweight Title alive despite the mixing of the brands lately and the poor champions. It's the WWE Creative Team's fault for why this title is absolute shit after it was moved to the Smackdown roster during 2005. What should we expect? The belt, after all, was created out of thin air and just awarded to Triple H during 2002 when Brock Lesnar joined the Smackdown roster as WWE Champion. I guess it has never been credible... Then again, the WWE Title was created from fictional tournament in Rio Di Janeiro during 1963.
Not too many issues with Sheamus vs. Mark Henry, as it's honestly not a bad match-up. My only issue is how bad Sheamus is as a babyface. Just HORRIBLE on the mic ("hi fella") and just looks stupid with tights and a shirt. Will he ever wear pants and look normal? Like all of us want to see his bare white thighs on our High Definition (HD) televisions. You are NOT Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, or Donald Duck. WEAR SOME F'N PANTS, SHEAMUS!!!! Wrestlers look stupid with shirts and tights, as if they are walking around in their underwear. As a wrestler, Sheamus is actually pretty good. I have no issues with his in-ring ability but with his forced character thanks to the WWE Creative Staff. He's yet another guy whom they can't write basic character development for and it will take years for Sheamus to overcome it. Triple H needs to go watch the video library and see how he got Batista over in 2005, not how he tried to force Randy Orton over repeatedly from 2004 and beyond. Timing and preparation is everything!
Thankfully, we have the Shield. For as much as we rip the WWE Creative Team, they are actually getting the careers of Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins, and Roman Reigns correct. They were unknowns individually but as a group, they can be marketed as a legitimate force. The Nexus looked great at first in 2010 because they were a group that would present a combined attack on a wrestler. Then, they lost members one by one and Wade Barrett proved to be an ineffective leader of the group. The Shield shares leadership equally and just provides gang beatdowns on any wrestler or any 6 man match they're involved within. All 3 are pretty good in the ring, too. Not a bad match so far and I'm quite happy to see recent Monday Night RAW Quarter Hour breakdowns showing gains in viewership for their segments. Shows that the group is getting over...
The Shield is a fine example of how simple the wrestling business truly is... Newcomer wrestlers, packaged as a stable, and the stable is what the WWE markets. OH, and the WWE actually let's the Shield WIN MATCHES against CREDIBLE OPPONENTS. The Nexus started getting their ass kicked regularly, sometimes by 1 man (John Cena). I see BIG things for Dean Ambrose in particular, as he has the total package for what a legitimate HEEL should be. Psychology, personality, great on the mic, good in-ring wrestler, and an awesome new finisher (bulldog that drops like a DDT?). WWE should groom Ambrose to be a diabolical heel that would ultimately contrast the goodguy John Cena. He reminds me so much of the Governor in the Walking Dead AMC television show...
A bad example of how the wrestling industry works is Fandango. A hot New Jersey crowd danced to his music and suddenly he must be PUSHED TO THE MOON. Granted, he was already getting mega-push before that... WWE had him defeat former multi-World Champion, Chris Jericho, at Wrestlemania 29. Fandango needs to thank Jim Johnston for a great theme song, but not every crowd will be full of smart wrestling fans who will have fun with any gimmick. Ratings aren't going up for Fandango's segments on RAW, as the live product and television product are 2 different things.
Finally, we have Dolph Ziggler. I actually feel bad for this guy... He could rival Jack Swagger on being jobbed out unfairly, although with Dolph Ziggler, he was the Money in the Bank winner for 2012 and yet despite him being the "hot" #1 contender, he got his ass kicked regularly. He was John Cena's bitch towards the end of 2012 (even had a singles match at Survivor Series 2012 scrapped with Cena), but the bigger problem might be his managers. He's been stuck with Vickie Guerrero and AJ Lee as managers and in both instances, the managers attempt to hog the spotlight from Ziggler. He has been unable to develop as a character and on the mic because both Vickie and AJ have either been willing to grab attention or the WWE Creative Team is too high on both non-wrestling female characters. After all, both Vickie and AJ have been thought about well enough to make them General Managers...
Now, Ziggler cashes in the Money in the Bank to win his first World Title against an injured Alberto Del Rio following his match and he's booked poorly as World Champion. Some are telling me that Ziggler's BIG MOMENT will be at Extreme Rules 2013 when he defeats both Alberto Del Rio and Jack Swagger... But why are we getting this moment LATER rather than before Ziggler is champion? He was a loser repeatedly before winning the World Title on the RAW after Wrestlemania 29 and then loses to Jack Swagger in a non-title match soon after winning the World Title. Huh? What is the purpose of keeping Swagger strong when he was an utter bomb for Wrestlemania 29? Aside from his Jericho win, which involved cheating, Ziggler hasn't been able to act as a World Champion. Instead, he's second fiddle to his 2 challengers, Del Rio and Swagger. Exactly how great were Del Rio and Swagger again when it was their turn in the spotlight?
I just don't get it... I don't know how anyone could look themselves in the mirror and say "I WANT TO BUY EXTREME RULES 2013". It is a lifeless show thanks to poor booking and terrible psychology of matches.
We'll see how the next Pay Per View goes, I suppose...
I hoped that you enjoyed this random "Excellence in Column Writing"... So just chill til the next episode...
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