By Daniel Barker
As much as one loves the World of professional wrestling I must confess that the subject matter does hold a habit in depressing oneself being a constant viewer. Partaking in WWE programming eventually grinds at a distinct threshold that’s designed to withstand antagonizing topics that are most likely not worth getting to emotionally charged about. In this article however my words are pretty much supporting the countless underused talents that are lurking around the WWE Universe, we may as well include both past & present while were at it.
The headline doesn’t exactly hold a straight forward meaning, it doesn’t actually imply that World Wrestling Entertainment are incapable in choosing talent, there are plenty examples that will prove solid arguments against such a gesture. On the other hand I do desire to throw hypothetical dung with regards to how they’ve failed to channel talent in recent years. Any company that relies on the marketability of the past to boost sales with so many younger performers honestly needs to revise their strategy. There are instances where the creative team backed the right guy many moons ago which I’ll use the prime example of the Heart Break Kid Shawn Michaels, the industry landscape was very different back then and had other promoters competing for a larger profit. Consequently the then WWF were put under pressure to deliver a solid formula to produce stars that would keep the viewers fixated on their product.
Another more recent big name would be of course John Cena, the work horse who has contributed immensely over the years. He too was solidly backed by the WWE machine with much investment received to make possible. Let us look at a different kind of example, an individual that became huge over night through a completely unplanned trend. You see men like Stonecold Steve Austin catapulted into stardom by an sudden shock to the system when they exhibited a contagious level of potential & charisma. Steve Austins infamous promo that he cut at King of the Ring marked his massive leap to the main event spot, a place on the card he never declined from. Before his break through moment Austin’s career had been guided through the creative path that would dictate how much the company would put into his career, then all of a sudden his marketability raises beyond expectation via an explosion of interest in the public eye.
More pop culture these days I’ll have to reinforce the Stonecold Steve Austin story with the shoot CM Punk delivered on RAW prior to Money in the Bank 2011. Yes CM Punk got given the segment yet that mans own work shook the entire wrestling World, a vocal barrage that many fans were dying to have expressed. World Wrestling Entertainment could’ve very easily lost a huge commodity had they opted to choose a different route and potentially allowed CM Punk to slip through their fingers. What CM Punk did wasn’t exactly replicating Stone Cold’s promo, CM Punk took his career into his own hands and proved what many fans already knew; that he was worth way more than the company promoted him. Not only do I credit that shoot as a break out moment it does mark an incredibly influential piece of television, it’s inspiring to learn that throwing caution to the wind can earn you your deepest desires. In a heart beat CM Punk went from being crapped on by the system to becoming more important than it. Amazing!
Now when we watch WWE we know where guys like CM Punk & John Cena fit into things, many other performers however are merely hanging onto a dead end dream. Many people laugh at the individual but Zack Ryder does deserve to grow beyond failed gimmick that the company exhausted, same goes for individuals such as JTG. There’s too much youth and athleticism going purely to waste, it’s sometimes unbearable seeing some of these guys show up on RAW & Smackdown when they’re eventually given a minuscule role. Dolph Ziggler earlier this year walked to the ring holding the World Heavyweight Championship in what felt like an experimental role, the plug got pulled when the gold went back to Alberto Del Rio, Dolph got dropped at the first sign of trouble. What purpose Dolph serves on the current program is beyond my comprehension.
What strikes me the most is that WWE reveal their own insecurities and prejudices without any effort what so ever. Damien Sandow is current World title Money in the Bank winner, let’s face facts recent developments do indicate differently. A gimmick that’s designed to shatter the glass ceiling has begun gradually losing impact on a wrestler that’s under-utilized. Working a rivalry alongside Cody Rhodes was the only build up, when Cody moved on Damien faded back to an obscurer position. Why does Damien lose spotlight when the two finish their feud? The Money in the Bank is a major selling point, it’s far from Damien’s fault that it isn’t looking as important as it should. If WWE used interesting ideas and allocated more resources perhaps Damien would look better to handle larger responsibilities. I believe personalities backstage are waiting to see the brief case cashed in when the timing is deemed “low risk”.
Prejudice wise we are seeing Darren Young featured that bit extra since the news about his homosexuality came to light. Darren made a brave historic announcement declaring he’s gay, imagine thinking that’s a likely reason why himself & Titus have maintained their current spot on RAW. After the first victory following Darren’s announcement it hasn’t gone down the winning road, it’s a con really. When people are talking about them the WWE jumps the bandwagon, when things settle they’ll jump straight back off to the comfort zone. When people rejoice that Darren’s gay a win immediately succeeds, when momentum runs low he’s back to square one. I must admit Darren’s in a harsh predicament because you can’t promote a person extra due to sexuality, nor can you hinder his progress. Question why wasn’t Darren in an indispensable slot on a card before all this?
WWE are making out they’re developing future superstars, I say the majority are inadvertently aspiring to be lumberjacks that occasionally get featured on a bland show, being represented by a brand gimmick and the result not having any effect to the way things are in any way shape or form. While them new future additions to the locker-room are set to struggle ;the current shunned performers will also compete for a glimpse of attention. That’s all because World Wrestling Entertainment has greedy eyes that are operated by a slow unimaginative mind. There’s too many toys for them to even handle! What’s an even bigger joke – THEY’VE GOT THE BIGGEST YARD!
If I were to give a single optimistic prediction I’d say WWE is making a rod for it’s own back. It feels like they’re craving competition to swoop these unused superstars along, package them into interesting characters and put them to good use.
Men such as CM Punk & Daniel Bryan that are insanely popular characters are honestly representations of themselves. You see a business couldn’t teach a guy like CM Punk to speak out with such natural conviction or coach Daniel Bryan how to draw from the crowd so seamlessly. To develop talent is a wise concept, but to build them up to a purpose they can never fore-fill is extremely short sighted and crucially needs changing.
That’s all for me folks! Until next time take care!
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