AS I SEE IT 4/23

Bob Magee
Pro Wrestling: Between the Sheets

This week, some thoughts on WWE creating storylines that are not designed to get over its Face of the Company.

WWE Face of the Company John Cena put over Lord Tenzai, after Tenzai’s stooge Sakamoto and David Otunga in what seems like a glorified squash “Extreme Rules” match

Before I get a bad mark from Jim Ross (in a recent talk, circulated by Chris Cruise; he claimed Internet fans only want “the moment” and not the foreplay. Yes, Jim…we want to get kissed before we get…well, you know. We just wanted to get kissed where we’ll feel it, not on the back of our head where we won’t feel it and it makes little sense to do for the purposes intended. Well, Cena jobbing to Tenzai felt like getting kissed in the back of the head. All the kisser felt was hair and the person being kissed not much aof anything.

Now the idea seems to be to plant the seed of doubt in fan minds as to whether or not Cena can beat the “unstoppable monster”. In truth, if Tenzai can’t beat Cena without two stooges helping, it did little to get him over for the future. I suppose we’re suppose to think that Laurinitas will have Otunga, Tenzai and half the Chicago Bears roster come out to interfere next Sunday to wind up giving Lesnar the win. Then we’ll get the formula chase of Lesnar the unstoppable monster for months, or until Lesnar tires of the road schedule again.

Yippee. Let Lesnar get over in storyline on his own, sans stooges. Given his track record, and how over he seems to be with fans, he’l lbe fine if WWE doesn’t insist in doing it THEIR way.

A case in point is what was done by the NWA/WCW to Ric Flair with the infamous Dusty finishes. How many times did Ric Flair get beat by Dusty Rhodes, or whoever the babyface challenger of the moment of the time was? Fans felt they’d gotten emotionally invested in the match, only to have it rubbed in their face again that a rule protected Flair, who went over because of throwing the challenger over the ropes, interference, etc.

Once upon a time, WWE/F did it right. Let’s look at the Bruno Sammartino formula. The heel challenger would be built by working his way through the roster. When he finally wrestled Sammartino there would be some sort of formula where the heel lost by DQ, or Bruno got counted because the heel did something dastardly, finally building to a blowoff match where Sammartino defeated the heel. It worked so well, that when Sammartino was finally beaten by Ivan Koloff in 1971 after 7 years, fans were stunned to the point of disbelief.

In short, they’d gotten over their champion. I realize such a 1-2-3 formula wouldn’t work, but the idea has to be to keep the champion strong. Chris Jericho mentioned something in his first book told him by Bulldog Bob Brown once. In essence, Brown told Jericho “If you make me look like a piece of crap on the mike or elsewhere…what does it do for you when you finally go over me? Nothing, because you just went over a piece of crap”

Any thoughts are welcome at the usual e-mail address.

To conclude, another reminder on a cancer-related charity show

The star-studded event happens Saturday, April 28, 2012 with a 7:45 pm bell-time at the Parks & Recreation Building, 44 Park Avenue, Nutley, NJ. Headlining the extravaganza are main event bouts with WWE Hall of Famer Tito Santana and WWE Legend The Rocker Marty Jannetty. Santana and Jannetty are former Intercontinental and Tag Team Champions. WWE Legend Young Stallion Jim Powers, a former Survivor Series winner, hosts a meet and greet session. Kevin Knight will defend the IWF Heavyweight Title. Also appearing are Self-Made Travis Blake with IWF Commissioner Richard Ross, Hi-Definition Chris Steeler, Phat Daddy Biggie Biggs, Outlaw Shane O’Brien, IWF Tag Team Champions The Master Frank Scoleri and Absolutely Edwin, All-Star Austin Williams, The Gambler Mr. Casino, Roman, Doctor Hurtz, Nightlife Nicky Oceans, Mad Dawg Jenkins, Rock Queen Alissa, AJ Sparxx, and more.

Doors open 7 pm as Ocean Beach NJ Sales and Rentals presents the interactive All-Access Pre-Event Fan Fest where families can connect with health-related businesses featuring Muscle Maker Grill of Nutley and Lyndhurst, Signature Fitness of Belleville, High Street Rehab of Nutley, and Champion Nutrition. The Fan Fest is free with your event ticket. Net proceeds from the spectacular will be donated to Relay For Life. Advance tickets available online at Advance tickets also available at the Nutley Recreation Department, 44 Park Avenue, Monday through Friday between 8:30 am and 4:30 pm (check or money order only, payable to: Relay For Life Nutley). ‘Kids of all ages will see a sports-entertainment spectacle like no other,’ said Kevin Knight. “We are proud to return home to the site of the first-ever IWF Event in 1998 and present this special Fundraiser in conjunction with Mayor Tucci and the Parks and Recreation Department.”

Until next time…

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