Welcome to Seven Things, a list that will run weekly and consist of very eclectic topics. These are of my opinions and doesn’t express the views of others on WrestlingOnEarth.
Late last week, details of the WWE Network started to be revealed online as we’re expected to have a late February 2014 launch. The service is to provide 24/7 live stream content on a web based service. In addition to the stream content, there will be onDemand content like a Netflix would offer. PPV’s are to be streamed on the WWE Network as well perhaps as it’s biggest asset to be offered.
I’ve seen reactions on both ends of spectrum. Some proclaim it’s a brilliant plan with the potential to be one of the most successful ideas in wrestling history. Some declare it is set to flop and will lay among the XFL and Tout tombstones of disappointment in Stamford. Contemplating myself, I’m not sure where I fall on the scale but like most things, it comes down to one factor – money.
The asking price is rumored to be $12 per month. Depending on how you view it, it’s an interesting dynamic as to determine if this is a good deal. Positively, if you purchase WWE PPV’s, you’re saving at least $45 per month. A huge pro for the most avid of WWE fans and parents who have to shell out the big bucks for their children. The nostalgia programming and the overall idea of a 24/7 wrestling will get the die hard fans/smart mark fans/internet fans/whatever you want to call them. Quite frankly, I will assume 70% of people reading this will sign up for WWE Network.
What’s the negative? Competition. You’d assume WWE wants to win over the casual fan with this but the price is not conducive to that thinking. Juggernauts like Netflix and to an extent, Hulu Plus will always take priority over wrestling for the variety, library and reputation. Amazon Prime has a rich library and offers extra incentives on your Amazon purchases. The pricing for WWE Network looks fair on the first glance but compare it to those other services I’ve mentioned:
It’s an instant turn off (pun intended) and I have no idea what WWE’s goal is overall but it seems to be a tough sell for casual wrestling fans who mostly watch bits and pieces of RAW and has the power of YouTube. As a longtime diehard wrestling fan who has a big interest in WWE’s library of things from my childhood, I hope it pans out and exists for a long time.
Something that will be fun should be the introduction of new content. I’ve decided to throw out seven ideas for new programs I would watch on the WWE Network. Most of these are based off other successful or defunct shows but let’s be honest. 90% of TV shows these days are stolen or redrawn ideas.
7. Who Wants To Be A *Millionaire? (*Million dollars substituted for free WWE merch)
The television game show “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire” was a big hit when it debuted in America as the idea of trivia and money captivates most. As we mentioned before, most of the audience for the WWE Network will be diehard fans. Wrestling is one of the wonderful things that you have to be a nerd about if you are indeed a diehard fan. We all see Twitter and notice how much people care about detail and remember tidbits.
Imagine a show where a fan answers questions to win WWE prizes as the questions go up. Low rung prizes for simple trivia can be funny things like a Howard Finkel autograph or a Hacksaw Jim Duggan 2×4. Middle of the road prizes can be current merch like a John Cena t-shirt. The top prizes would be Wrestlemania trips + tickets or obscene old WWE memorabilia like a casket used in a Casket Match. Regardless of the prizes, a WWE trivia show would be simple to produce and very fun.
6. Old wrestlers doing anything
WWE has already filmed footage and episodes of a WWE Legends reality show where a group of legendary ex-wrestlers live together in one house. Just about anything you do with them can be fun.
Bass Fishing With Hacksaw Jim Duggan, Hair Stylin’ And Profilin’ With Honky Tonk Man, Drinking Alcohol And Doing Crazy Things With Ric Flair.
5. Lance Storm: Fashion Police
Recently on Twitter, Lance Storm has taken to critiquing the fashion choices of female wrestlers as you can see here and here. Imagine 20 minutes of Storm giving his thoughts on the WWE diva outfits on each show and Total Divas. The wrestling world has longed for a true fashionista and Lance Storm is here to give that dream to us.
4. Art of Wrestling
The WWE Network should feature multiple talk shows and Colt Cabana’s Art of Wrestling podcast has featured the best wrestling interviews. Leading his podcast to such a high level of success without any big corporation helping him is no small feat. (As he’ll make sure to let you know.) The Art of Wrestling is great and has turned into an important asset in this current culture of entertainment and wrestling.
Cabana has had a few tryouts of different kinds with WWE in the recent times and I think he could be very beneficial to providing new quality content. WWE needs new content for this to work. Some of the things I’ve seen them come up with on their YouTube channel such as “The JBL and Cole Show” and ironically stolen from Cabana, “Are You Serious?” are proof if this is what their idea of outside the box content is, they REALLY need to look elsewhere. Colt Cabana is the guy for that, especially with the Art of Wrestling.
3. Mark (Henry) vs. Food
This is not a fat joke, jerks. Wrestlers say Mark Henry is known for two things on the road. The first being finding the best local strip clubs in every city (we can work this into the show too) but the other being finding the best spots for food everywhere the WWE tours.
No kayfabe whatsoever, we see Mark Henry visit his favorite food spots in each city, find out what his favorite dishes are, discover what his LEAST favorite dishes on each menu are, watch him eat the meal, see how much he tips and gives a meal review at the end of each show. If you can honestly say you wouldn’t watch this, you are a jerk and you should get your wig split.
2. WWE Double Dare
Double Dare was a fun show of two families competing in trivia or physical challenges with the winning team getting to run through a fun and goofy obstacle course in hopes of winning a prize. There are so many wrestlers not currently being used that this could be a great way to utilize some of them. Have each wrestler join a family in the competitions. JTG can become Mr. Double Dare. (Or Mr. whatever the non copyrighted name would be)
The wrestling factor adds in some fun theme events that would make it more fitting and enjoyable. Somewhere in WWE’s version of an old attic probably sits gallons of green slime from the 2006 DX reunion that can be put to use. The lack of Double Dare rip offs are shameful, American television producers.
1. First Take With Vince Russo and Jim Cornette
ESPN First Take with Skip Bayless and Stephen A Smith is one of the most popular sports shows on television. While debating the day’s most popular and controversial stories, two usually offer polarizing opinions and elicit emotion in their comments. The more you think about it, the more comparable Skip and Stephen A are to Jim Cornette and Vince Russo.
With a history of hating each amongst many other people and things, Russo and Cornette are VERY unpopular among the social media age but when either has a shoot interview released, it’s often among the most talked about interviews of the wrestling year. Unlike Skip and Stephen A, these two genuinely dislike each other and having them debate would be must see television.
But Jim Cornette is NEVER, EVER, EVER, EVER stepping foot back in WWE! Yeah, okay. Mr. Cornette likes to portray himself as a badass who stuck it to WWE and TNA but the truth is they kicked him to the curb before he ever quit. Both of these guys would “do business” for the WWE money. WWE has allowed Cornette to break kayfabe and trash their own programming for the betterment of the show so it isn’t like this would be breaking new ground. If that was too far for current day WWE management’s taste, have them debate controversial wrestling shows and moments from the past. Hell, these two could debate their favorite flowers and it would be magical television.
All features for the WWE Network are reports and not confirmed as of yet by WWE.