Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Making it up as we go

Courtesy: WWE
By Chad Smart
@chadsmart & @my123cents on Twitter
Listen to the podcast

I’ve been trying to not be supercritical towards WWE this year. By trying to focus on the positives, the negatives have been building up and have finally exploded. On the Extreme Rules recap episode of the My123Cents podcast, I expressed my frustrations with the current booking and match layout of WWE. After watching the opening segment of the Memorial Day episode of RAW, I was left wondering if the WWE writing team took the holiday off or if Vince McMahon and company simply don’t care about what happens inside the ring.

Courtesy: WWE
Before I get into a rant about how bad the segment with Shane McMahon, Stephanie McMahon and the New Day was, I first want to comment on the Stephanie McMahon character. Ever since The Authority (Stephanie and husband Triple H) took control of RAW a few years ago, she has been the evil, vindictive, witch with a B. For the last month since her dad, Vince McMahon gave control of Raw to her and brother Shane, Steph has been more cheerful and impartial. I made a comment to Kevin about Roman Reigns spearing the heel out of Stephanie at WrestleMania. Speaking of which, did Triple H fall into a hole leaving AT&T Stadium in Dallas after his loss to Reigns?

Courtesy: WWE

I can understand if Stephanie’s change in attitude is all a ploy to somehow force Shane out of power somewhere down the road. However, shouldn’t there be some questioning of her motives from either Shane or the WWE roster? Why has everyone easily accepted this new Stephanie? It’s those little details that plague WWE’s storytelling.

Back to the opening of RAW and why it encapsulates the problems within WWE. Shane and Stephanie come out to start the show by publicly announcing SmackDown going live every week starting July 19. I don’t know when the decision for a live SmackDown was made. I don’t know if it was WWE’s decision or a directive from management at the USA network. Therefore, I don’t know how much thought has been put into the decision of splitting RAW and Smackdown into two unique brands. Based on the segment of RAW, I would venture to guess that the decision was made about an hour before the initial stories hit the web and was then forgotten about.

After making the announcement about SmackDown, The New Day come out to ask questions pertaining to what will happen when RAW and SmackDown become two separate brands. New Day’s questions were met with “we haven’t figured that out yet.” So what was the point of this segment? The same information could have been said in half the time with Shane and Stephanie simply saying changes were coming and more details would be made on July 18.

One of RAW’s biggest problems since the Attitude Era has been taking 15 minutes to deliver 3 minutes worth of material. Unfortunately, even though we’re in a “new era” it looks like only the Superstars are the only things changing in WWE.

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