Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Getting Yourself Over

Z! True Long Island Story on YouTube

I had planned on doing a write up recapping Pro Wrestling Guerrilla’s show from Saturday night. Honestly though, I don’t like recapping shows. If you really want to know what happened you can check out the PWG message board on their website or any other wrestling website that  posts results. The one comment I will make about the show is if Willie Mack isn’t on the TNA roster or in FCW by the end of the year, whoever is in charge or signing talent for TNA and WWE should get a new job. Willie could be the breakout star of the year.

Okay, so if I’m not going to recap PWG: Card Subject to Change 3 what am I going to write about?  I wanted to throw out some comments about what appears to be a possible growing trend amongst wrestlers. I say growing trend when the total number of wrestlers doing it stands at 2, but I can see others joining the group. The trend I speak of is creating YouTube shows.

Zack joins LOD (from Z! True Long Island Story)
Zack Ryder was the first to create a weekly youtube show, The Z! True Long Island Story. While not the flashiest or most thought provoking show, it’s a way for Zack to show off his personality and gain a following since his WWE television time is mostly regulated to the now cancelled Superstars show. Zack has put out 8 episodes so far and their impact is slowly starting to be seen on WWE shows.

Each episode of the ZTLI Story features a Broski of the Week. At Wrestlemania there was a sign held up throughout most of the show proclaiming the sign holder the Broski of the Week. Watching Raw as I type this and I’ve seen a couple Broski signs in the crowd. Zack’s show has not been promoted on WWE programming to my knowledge so his cult following is based primarily on word of mouth, or word of Twitter.

Curt Hawkins' YouTube channel "Callin' Sports"
Not to be outdone by his former tag team partner, last week Curt Hawkins put up a teaser video on YouTube for his new show.  While Zack has taken a couple of creative shots about WWE not using him, Curt flat out said if he wasn’t going to get any time of WWE programming then he was going to use YouTube to get over.

I think this is a clever (and maybe overdue) outlet for wrestlers who seem to get overlooked. Several wrestlers have been using Twitter in the past couple years to express their opinions and attract fans, but YouTube has been a largely untapped market. What will be interesting to watch is if Zack, Curt and any other wrestler who decides to use YouTube can build up a large enough fan base to affect their position in the company.  Not only that, but will WWE management start to monitor wrestler’s YouTube accounts and take action against them if the wrestler says something management doesn’t like? Or if the wrestler gains a large fan base on their own will someone in a position of power who may not be a fan of said wrestler try to keep the wrestler down through means of backstage power plays?

I know I’ll keep watching the YouTube shows and hoping Zack, Curt and whoever else makes a show can use this new means of reaching out to fans as a way to grab their moment. As Steve Austin said on the second episode of Tough Enough, you can’t wait around hoping for your chance. If you want it, you’ve got to seize the bull by the horns and create your moment. Those may not have been his exact words, but that was the general sentiment. And that’s exactly what Zack Ryder is trying to do with his YouTube video. Only time will tell if it works. 

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