When WWE does something, they don’t do it half way. They take something and they shove it down our throats. It is part of the reason I think that they have trouble building main event caliber stars these days. Very few are able to break through to the other side, so to speak, and remain there. As a result, they cling desperately to the stars that they do have. The problem is this 0-60 in 2 seconds mentality that the company tends to have. It is very rarely that WWE is subtle about something they want fans on board with. Lately, though, it seems as if the company is pushing things even harder. Between advertising, social media, and some of the superstars they want to push to the moon, in this case Ryback. Before I continue I do realize that the WWE is a corporation and cash is king. Most of the things I’m complaining about are a result of advertising dollars. That said, they still bother me, so let’s continue.
Overdo #1: Social Media
Don’t get me wrong, I love social media as much as the next guy. I have a Facebook, Twitter, Vine, Pintrest, Tumblr, Instagram, and I check them all daily. I am all for social media, really. Only, not when they are shoved in my face during a match or between each match, or during an in-ring promo! It is excessive! I don’t need to see what Wade Barrett has to say about Dolph Ziggler’s match! Especially now that WWE has their own app. Honestly, WWE acts like a Dad or Grandfather who just learned about the internet,
“HAVE YOU SEEN THIS THING?!”
“Yes Dad, we’re all accustomed to the internet…”
“Look I’m TWEETING!”
“That’s great Dad…”
“HAVE YOU LIKED ME ON FACEBOOK YET?!”
I get it, social media is a great way to advertise for free, which means the company can save a ton of money. That said, just dial it back WWE. The fact that the company advertises their app in the middle of a match infuriates me. The little phone image that comes up during a match takes up a third of the screen! Just to tell me that, despite the fact that I’m watching their product, I’m not watching ENOUGH of their product. “Hey, you’re watching WWE television? Well you should watch the WWE App WHILE watching WWE television! Don’t forget to tweet about the match, while watching the match, and the App! In fact, why don’t you Tout a video of yourself tweeting about the match!” How many smartphones do you think we have WWE?! Just…shhhh. I just want to watch Daniel Bryan in peace.
Overdo #2: Advertising in the Actual Show/Product Placement
This week was a perfect example of exactly what I mean. The show was CLEARLY sponsored by Hardee’s and boy there wasn’t much subtlety about it. Between having more Hardee’s commercials than any other, having Vickie Guerrero “enjoying a fresh, new, delicious Hardee’s burger available for only $2.99 at your local Hardee’s!” or whatever she said, then saying one of their matches was brought to you by Hardee’s new burger, it was obvious. This is nothing new, WWE has done these kind of product placement nights before, but Monday seemed particularly bad. It could be because of what I just said above about social media being pushed on us, but I just remember thinking, “Will there be any actual WWE programming tonight?” It seems like the jump from 2 hours to 3 hours has really just been to fill as much of the extra time with as many advertising dollars as possible. It has gotten to the point lately where I will record Raw and Smackdown and just skip through a good deal of the show, just to avoid watching the things that are pointless. It also gets topped off with pretty horrible acting from the announce team, “Gee I tried that new Hardee’s burger and it was the best burger I’ve ever had. Just like heaven on a bun.” As JBL tries to pretend like he actually eats fast food. The whole thing just feels so forced and fake.
Overdo #3: Ryback
Ok this is the one that I blame the WWE the most on. Talk about not being able to decide what you want to do with a guy! I am not on the Ryback train and don’t have any plans to hop on soon. He is a really big buff guy, who can’t wrestle very well or sell very well. I think he is average, and has the “look” WWE typically goes for. I might sound harsh on him, but that’s because I am harsh on everyone. From what I’ve heard, he has also developed a bit of an ego backstage, too. Which, of course, makes me sour on him even more. The guy should be grateful, he was in developmental, had a brief stint in the Nexus as Skip Sheffield, hurt himself, then came back as the Ryback character. From there Ryback defeated a large number of jobbers, a few mid-carders, and then jumped prematurely into the main event scene due to John Cena being hurt. Since the second he stepped in the main event, he has lost. Every Pay-Per-View he has been in, he has lost. Yet he is handed title match after title match! He had a match at Wrestlemania against Mark Henry, lost, then the NEXT night was handed the #1 contender spot for the WWE Championship. What?! Why am I supposed to believe this is a serious challenger for the WWE Championship? The booking of his character is just atrocious. If a UFC fighter lost every match he had, you wouldn’t give him a title shot, let alone half a dozen. I still hear Goldberg chants every time he is in the ring, wrestling or not. I said this when he was gaining momentum as a face, Ryback himself is not over, the “Feed Me More” chants were over. Fans didn’t like Ryback, they liked to chant “Feed Me More!” Now that Ryback has dropped the “Feed Me More” gimmick people are back to being bored with him. I just can’t get behind his character and I really wish WWE would stop trying to make me like him. It’s not going to happen; please move on. With the exception of Cm Punk/The Rock/John Cena stint around Wrestlemania season Ryback has been in the WWE Championship scene since late October! It’s time to mix it up a bit!