The Trouble With Internet Reporting Part 2
Hey yo! This is Badseed coming at you again with another edition of the Bottomline. Last issue, I kind of dissed the whole way certain Internet reporters seem to have lost sight of why they write their column in the first place. If you missed it, I suggest checking out The Trouble With Internet Reporting, but if you want a quick synopsis, it basically let writers know that we love wrestling and instead of just looking for ways to criticize it, we should be looking for something positive to say in an effort to get the fans back. We have a responsibility to inform the people and if wrestling continues to lose popularity, then who will be there to read our columns. It's like, if there were no crimes, why would we need police officers? I know, if the product sucks, then what can we do? But the thing is, the product doesn't suck! There is a lot of good going on and we choose to attack HHH, who really didn't do all that wrong and we continue to attack the federation even though the highest rated segments prove our opinions wrong, too.
Anyway, I figured I would get a lot of negative email from my column, but guess what, I got a lot of emails and they were all positive. I was shocked to see most everyone in agreement. One person was upset that I didn't go further and find something positive to say about Goldberg, but it just didn't fit my column. Goldberg is a good champion if he has good people to defend the title against. Another Kevin Nash feud could be interesting, because Nash is better as a heel and of course we could have the rematch with HHH, a great feud with Scott Steiner, even Test and of course, Kane. It made sense for him to get the title right now and there is my defense of him. Now, since I got so many emails about the subject, I am going to go one further and get everyone of my colleagues angry at me, because I just don't care, but the subject needs to be brought up. Spoilers. We all read them, but if we really thought about it, spoilers are ruining wrestling, too.
I remember sitting in my living room watching wrestling and not knowing too much about the sport. I didn't even know if it was real or not. I just knew I liked it and I was excited to watch it. I sat there watching Scott Hall and Curt Henning fighting Playboy Buddy Rose and Doug Somers and surprised to see Col. Debeers cost Hall and Henning the AWA tag-team titles off a countout. I was so upset, because the heels didn't deserve such a cheap victory and should not be champions. I watched each week hoping Shawn Michaels and Marty Jannety would take those straps and each week, they would come close, only to lose. They won the belts eventually, but the chase was just so much fun to watch, because I was not sure if they could do it. I remember getting excited to see Rowdy Roddy Piper return to the Piper's Pit only to see Adrian Adonis ruin his set and create the Flower Shop. I was so happy to see the #1 heel in the industry start to turn face and I couldn't believe my eyes when Hulk Hogan saved him from an attack by Adonis and Paul Orndorff. I couldn't believe it when Andre the Giant ripped the cross from Hogan's neck. I was surprised when Strike Force beat the Hart Foundation for the tag-team titles and I was so interested in finding out who Bam Bam Bigelow would pick as his manager. Those were the days and wrestling was awesome, unpredictable and a lot more rewarding to watch. Imagine how uninteresting it would have been to read a spoiler stating that Hogan was expected to beat Andre the Giant at Wrestlemania 3. It would have taken the spectacle out of what was to be the greatest match in wrestling history.
Spoilers are really hurting the feelings we have when we watch wrestling. Now, unlike before, we watch wrestling in hopes of a really big shock, a major swerve of some kind and just to look for the technical aspect of it all. We are not all that interested in the actual results of the match, because they really don't mean anything. When HHH loses a tag-team match, we have been conditioned to realize that it means he will win his solo match. Two wrestlers have a moment of friction and we have been conditioned to know when exactly they will split up. Thank god the NWA TNA changed all that when they teased an AMW breakup only to have AMW stay together and win back the belts. That was a refreshing change. The NWA TNA show has actually been the show to watch, because there really aren't spoilers out there telling you exactly who is going to win the matches anymore and what storylines are going to take place. Raven was expected to win the title and he didn't. AJ Styles won the belt and we were shocked. The Truth beat Ken Shamrock for the belt. WOW!!! It is just amazing to watch that show, but the WWE is just predictable because of our endless thirst to find out exactly what is going to happen.
There is no such thing as a surprise new wrestler to debut. Remember vignettes that would get us pumped because we realized Dusty Rhodes, Ric Flair, Kerry Von Erich, Ricky Steamboat, Superstar Graham and others were on their way to the WWE. I didn't see that coming. I can't wait to see them in the ring. Now, we know on Monday Night Raw, the WWE will have an New World Order vignette on the show and we can even download it. The Rock talking on the stage about how there is no one left to beat and we were already chanting Goldberg, because every site knew it. No more surprises.
Want to know what will happen on Smackdown, well just check out the spoiler each week. Hell, I didn't even need to check out the spoiler to find out Lesnar was going to win the marathon match to beat Kurt Angle. Well, why should I sit through an hour of that when Must See TV is on and I don't know what is going to happen or Survivor is on and that is hard to determine. Monday Night Football is on against Raw and since I know what will happen on Raw later, I will watch the big game. Want to know what a future storyline will be going on in the WWE, you will surely read about it on one of the many links. And the thing is, they don't allow you not to see them anymore. Hulk Hogan signs with TNA is the headline so before we even read the article, we already know. If we didn't want to know and were just looking for a column or results of some show, well it is too bad, cause we were forced to find out. Why can't we just have links about major spoiler about who the next champion will be or major signing by the NWA TNA? I mean, it is bad enough to do that. People will say that if you don't want a spoiler, then don't read it, but that's like giving a child his Christmas gift and telling him not to open the box. It is not going to happen. The curiosity is going to get us. I sit and wait for my friend and it is 9 p.m. and I have missed an hour of a PPV and I want to see the replay to catch that missed hour, but guess what I found myself doing; checking out the results to the match. They are there and they are heavily advertised and I just ruined my feel for the show, because I couldn't resist. There may not be any control over it, but it is there and it does have an effect about our feel for the product.
I know that you are saying that many of the rumors turn out to be false anyhow, but that also ruins the show for us. It's like telling someone that Rundown was the greatest movie ever and we go see it and it was only great, but because we were expecting a classic, that great became good in our minds. When we expect someone to do a big run in or take a title and it doesn't happen, then it made the match not as good, because we were pumped to see something else. Plus, can there be any surprises anymore when one site reports that Goldberg is expected to win his match with HHH and another reports that HHH is going to win with both sites giving you detailed information how either result will occur. Ummm…well, now all I am watching for is to see which site is correct and not to actually sit and suspend my disbelief to enjoy the show.
If you think about it, before the age of spoilers we had constant surprises everywhere you looked. Cyndi Lauper showing up on WWE television, Andre the Giant and the twin referee scandal, Ultimate Warrior defeating Honky Tonk Man in 7 seconds to win the title, the Undertaker's debut, the debut of countless wrestlers, Savage beating Tito Santana in the Boston Gardens, a house show, Bret Hart turning face at Wrestlemania 4 against Bad News Brown, Randy Savage picking Elizabeth as his new manager and later joining the Mega Powers with Hogan, Ric Flair losing the title to Ronnie Garvin of all people, Barry Windham turning on Luger to join the Four Horsemen, Lex Luger signed as a Horseman, Nikita Koloff winning the best of seven series against Magnum TA, Curt Henning winning his first world title in the AWA and turning heel, the UWF and NWA merged and so on. So many things that were not told to us beforehand and made that much more special, even the little things like the Young Stallions beating the Hart Foundation in a great non-title match with Mr. T as the enforcer.
Fast forward and how many surprises have we had since; The New World Order coming to WCW and Hulk Hogan turning heel, Taz going to ECW from the WWE to win the World title and defeat Mike Awesome who was going to WCW, Rowdy Roddy Piper showing up at the last Wrestlemania, Goldberg's streak, ECW showing up in the WWE as part of the Alliance, Christian winning the IC title from Booker T at a house show. I can't really think of many more and definitely not the small things, which really do matter. Hell, Mick Foley showing up could have been a great surprise, but that was taken away from us too. Knowing what is going to happen has made me just watch wrestling to write a column on and to comment on with my friends. It is still fun to watch and thankfully when I see two great wrestlers going at it, exciting, but wrestling has lost something special that may not be able to return. It's a shame. I guess there is such thing as too much information.
Well, those are my thoughts. I will be writing about Women's Wrestling next week and how the WWE can really bolster the squad with a 4 on 4 elimination match at Survivor Series. Until then, Peace.
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