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Thread: WWE Friday Night Smackdown Live Discussion - November 29, 2019

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    Re: WWE Friday Night Smackdown Live Discussion - November 29, 2019

    You cant not push the Fiend. I don't think he sucks at all, I think the gimmick itself is fantastic and its good to have a character that isn't just "look how many spots I can cram into a match", because that's literally the defining trait of 99% of wrestler characters thesedays. He's a fantastic promo as well, and was crazy over. WWE needs to start listening to their own fans more instead of trying to ignore us and forcing untalented bums like Rollins on us.

    There are issues though, booking issues. The red lighting makes any Fiend match a chore to sit through. Him being impervious to pain just adds to that as well. His matches have to become finisher fests full of no selling, and even though thats the standard thesedays The Fiend turns that up to 11. WWE also loves copy and paste booking, they love doing the same thing repeatedly, and The Fiend being what it is now you cant exactly have the babyface lay him out because he'd just get right back up so most of his appearances are just him hitting the mandible claw out of nowhere.

    Ditch the red lighting and return Bray/Fiend to a level where he can conceivably take a loss and things would be much better and more enjoyable.

    Yeah you can say there's a cheese factor with the Fiend, but thats Pro Wrestling, its a carny as hell, ridiculous, even stupid product which works best when it embraces that. Impact just had an insanely entertaining episode where everyone on the roster put on over the top cheesy 80's gimmicks for one night only. Pro Wrestling needs some silliness/wackiness.




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    Re: WWE Friday Night Smackdown Live Discussion - November 29, 2019

    Quote Originally Posted by The EC View Post
    Not asking this as a counter to anything you said because I myself am pretty down on The Fiend compared to most... but what do you think of the fact he's now the biggest merch mover in the company? I mean, for that alone, do you feel his push is somewhat justified? Or are you saying what you're saying about him purely from a subjective standpoint?
    Who is he popular with? The hardcore fans who won't leave no matter what. It's fool's gold. At the end of the day you have to protect the company and especially the world title. When you're cutting off the credibility of the main point of the company, why would anyone watch? The issue with him is that this isn't what will draw money in 2019 because fans and people in general are much smarter and have less patience for stupid stuff like The Fiend. Just look at the executives of Fox the first time the Fiend popped up on the debut episode of SD. That was the reaction of every normal person watching, many of which objectively left never to return. Now not to suggest that he's the only problem because as I said, ultimately the show is completely terrible by nearly every standard in general. But when you lose credibility it's much harder to get it back rather than just have a stretch of bad tv. WWF had years of bad stuff in the early 90s, but when 1995 hit and they went way off the deep end with dumb crap is when things bottomed out. Now SD is on the verge of being Raw levels in the ratings despite a 2 million viewer headstart and being on a much bigger Network after less than 2 months. Who has been the most pushed star during this time? Who also has given the company a ton of negative publicity with his title matches to date? Will his big merch selling matter in a year when he has moved on and been mocked as a failure like he always is? Those potential fans this stuff pushed away are never coming back and they're not good enough at booking wrestling to bring credibility to the show and the title which is a drawing tool that never goes away or loses it's stature, unless you do stuff like they've been doing. (And the title was already in the toilet. Kofi's reign had bad matches, the fans were turning on him, the ratings were dying on USA and they couldn't wait to put the title on Brock, another act that is proven to not be a needle mover at all in 7 seconds. Why is the title so worthless at the end of the year I wonder?)

    The best thing they could have done was put the title on Bryan and build things around him as a babyface champion the people believe in and want to see every week (If you remember, even after WM30 we never actually got that) and send The Fiend to NXT where he could potentially poach some AEW fans that love garbage like that.

    TL:DR - While him selling shirts is nice, Bray is over with superfans which will dry up sooner rather than later, not worth the damage done to the title and show which is much harder to undue than having a hot merch act, they're not smart enough at booking to make something like this work and not be a turn-off to people, which it has proven to be.
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    Re: WWE Friday Night Smackdown Live Discussion - November 29, 2019

    No one moves the needle though.

    Its not like The Fiend is some anomaly. Through a myriad of guys on top Rollins, Brock, Styles, Bryan, Becky the ratings have tanked and hit some record lows.

    The Fiend wont make any difference or drive away anymore fans. Pro Wrestling is as unpopular and uncool as its probably ever been. It does it itself. I mean when even Brock who would be a massive draw in the UFC doesn't pop the ratings despite not being there all the time there's an issue with the audience just not being there anymore.




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    Re: WWE Friday Night Smackdown Live Discussion - November 29, 2019

    Quote Originally Posted by ETE View Post
    No one moves the needle though.

    Its not like The Fiend is some anomaly. Through a myriad of guys on top Rollins, Brock, Styles, Bryan, Becky the ratings have tanked and hit some record lows.

    The Fiend wont make any difference or drive away anymore fans. Pro Wrestling is as unpopular and uncool as its probably ever been. It does it itself. I mean when even Brock who would be a massive draw in the UFC doesn't pop the ratings despite not being there all the time there's an issue with the audience just not being there anymore.
    A reasonable point and one I do agree with but there was also 4 million people who watched the first episode of SD 2 months ago, and 3 a week after (relevant since the first week will always have an artificial bump of course) and now we've dropped faster than anyone could have predicted. Much like AEW losing a ton of their viewers in a fast period, there's positives and negatives but at the end of the day you have to put blame on the people responsible (again, not JUST Bray, but he's clearly a factor) and make appropriate changes. You might actually be right but I can't buy, in a billion dollar company having that attitude to just say "nobody is a needle mover". It's not like nobody ever has been. Of those names you listed, all those people sucked on top (for one reason or another, Brock you can point to him having good matches a handful of times a year but at the end of the day having him as champion has needed resentment towards the company and made the show worse by holding the belt hostage for months on end. He's not worth it as champion.) Seth sucks and has always sucked. Becky could have been something, but they fumbled the easiest angle in the world with Ronda for some reason and then put her against Lacey for like 3 months. Her performances weren't great either. Bryan and AJ didn't tank ratings, they were the most stable of the people and definitely well above the SD champions this year in Kofi and The Fiend. If they can have a stabilizing champion they'll have a chance to grow in my belief.
    As long as you remember me, I will always live within you. Not as a phantom limb or a phantom anything...As part of your heart. I will always be your angel of peace. So I know exactly how to finish...



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    Re: WWE Friday Night Smackdown Live Discussion - November 29, 2019

    Time to put the strap on Ali, I say.
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    Re: WWE Friday Night Smackdown Live Discussion - November 29, 2019

    Ali would be a great choice too. Charismatic, great worker, great promo, real life story. I just think they would need to build him more because they really fumbled him after his hot start to the year.
    As long as you remember me, I will always live within you. Not as a phantom limb or a phantom anything...As part of your heart. I will always be your angel of peace. So I know exactly how to finish...



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    Re: WWE Friday Night Smackdown Live Discussion - November 29, 2019

    Quote Originally Posted by Finishline View Post
    but here's my only gripe with it: It was only a few weeks ago that he revealed the blue Universal Championship. I would've introduced the Fiend championship then, rather than bringing a blue Universal Championship in only to take it away two weeks later.
    This seems to be a problem with Smackdown lately. I watched some of the Fox premiere and one thing that immediately stuck out to me was the fact that the WWE created this brand new intro video that would immediately need updating due to the draft that took place the following week. Not to mention there's the whole "See all of those guys you like on the first ep? Well half are going to Raw next week!"

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    Re: WWE Friday Night Smackdown Live Discussion - November 29, 2019

    Quote Originally Posted by Zero View Post
    A reasonable point and one I do agree with but there was also 4 million people who watched the first episode of SD 2 months ago, and 3 a week after (relevant since the first week will always have an artificial bump of course) and now we've dropped faster than anyone could have predicted. Much like AEW losing a ton of their viewers in a fast period, there's positives and negatives but at the end of the day you have to put blame on the people responsible (again, not JUST Bray, but he's clearly a factor) and make appropriate changes. You might actually be right but I can't buy, in a billion dollar company having that attitude to just say "nobody is a needle mover". It's not like nobody ever has been. Of those names you listed, all those people sucked on top (for one reason or another, Brock you can point to him having good matches a handful of times a year but at the end of the day having him as champion has needed resentment towards the company and made the show worse by holding the belt hostage for months on end. He's not worth it as champion.) Seth sucks and has always sucked. Becky could have been something, but they fumbled the easiest angle in the world with Ronda for some reason and then put her against Lacey for like 3 months. Her performances weren't great either. Bryan and AJ didn't tank ratings, they were the most stable of the people and definitely well above the SD champions this year in Kofi and The Fiend. If they can have a stabilizing champion they'll have a chance to grow in my belief.
    The first SDL on Fox was always going to pop a decent rating simply due to all the promotion and all the Stars brought in for it. Problem is once most of those Stars go back to not working for the WWE or get drafted to Raw what is there? Its still just a typical WWE show with the same few people getting all the spotlight every week.

    As far as who to push, and how to push them, and how much mainstream appeal, or doing bigger business goes, that's honestly a tricky spot to call.

    I'll be honest I firmly believe a WWE run better than it has been would be much more successful than it is now, maybe that's so obvious though. But if instead of just being clubbed over the head with The Shield and Lesnar for the last 7 or so years. Imagine a WWE where they had of followed through on pushes with people like Barrett, Rusev, Mizdow, Miz, Ziggler, etc, going back further even Ryder. A WWE where they had of listened to the fans over the last decade more than they have done, a WWE where they get behind people who get over as opposed to burying 99% of the Wrestlers that get organically over would be in a much better spot now, and in turn the whole Pro Wrestling business would be. But theres been to much of an idea of "the McMahons dont care about their own fanbase" over recent years, to much arrogance, and ignorance, too much of just hand picking people and only pushing them. Theres been so much damage done when all they had to do was get behind things like Rusev Day instead of sabotaging it. A Main Event scene consisting of more variety, less McMahon pets, and more real Pro Wrestling talents would create a much more entertaining and conceivably successful WWE.

    But at the same time, its also sort of undeniable that things are just in a real lull right now. Pro Wrestling isn't cool. MMA has largely replaced Pro Wrestling. I mean yes the McMahons are stubborn and only push about 6-7 people on the entire roster while everyone else is an aimless jobber but they put the Title on Brock who is undeniably a Star; ratings went down. Put the Title on Styles for a year; ratings went down. Put the Title on Bryan who is the biggest Star since John Cena came along. Put the Title on Seth Rollins who was pretty damn beloved despite the fact he's an untalented sack of shit; ratings went down. Got behind Becky Lynch and made her at times the biggest Star in WWE; ratings went down. Now The Fiend is the hottest act in the company, put the Title on him; ratings went down.

    Then you look at AEW; fresh, exciting, no McMahons. Giving guys like Dillinger a new lease on life, Jericho blowing it out of the park, MJF emerging as a great heel, Moxley, Rhodes, Omega. Some decent stars in the Pro Wrestling bubble yet their ratings decrease weekly.

    So there's an argument there that hype for a big show or a new show might draw people in but no matter what, no matter who is on top Pro Wrestling is just in such a lull that its not sustainable and people will keep tuning out. A lot of that though is probably due to the WWE driving people away from Pro Wrestling for so long, and killing people's interest in it. I went from watching every minute of every WWE show every week to thesedays I might watch a Miz segment if he's actually doing something remotely relevant. But I largely just skip everything.

    Still I'm all for taking everyone at the top in WWE right now, grab all of them even the talented ones like Bryan and Styles, and even the ones I do enjoy like Corbin and put them all at the bottom of the card. Take The Shield, Lesnar, Becky, Charlotte, etc and shove them at the bottom of the card; they dont draw, that's undeniable at this point. Whether it is their fault or not is irrelevant they aren't draws. Then all those lowcard jobbers, those guys who every time they get over they get buried and punished give them a go at the top. Try something new, its not like things could be worse than they are now with the chosen few dominating everything.




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