Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Wrestling with the Hulu Express

Good day, friends! Today I want to rave about how awesome technology is and speculate on an idea I have for WWE to be better for [maybe only] me.

As you may know, I love me some pro rasslin. I do my best to keep up with weekly WWE shows, and I try to preview every big Network event (I feel weird calling them pay per views anymore) on the podcast. But now that I lead such an exciting life, I don't really have time to sit down and watch five hours of programming every week.

To work around this, I started to watch clips on WWE's social pages about two years ago. This was a really good system: I saw all of the major segments of both shows in maybe 15 minutes. Of course I wasn't getting the full effect, but I was seeing enough to be "prepared" for the big shows. Since I have neither cable nor a desire to find full shows on Dailymotion, this was a perfect alternative.

Or so I thought.

A few months ago I finally jumped on the Hulu bandwagon, and I don't regret it a bit. $12 a month for classic shows, sweet movies, and current shows on-demand - why didn't I sign up sooner? And after I watched the final season of Last Man Standing, I discovered that WWE posts 90-minute versions of both RAW and Smackdown each week. That's right: I can now save two hours of my life (or get it back?) and still have all of the information I need to ramble through the previews.

With the extra time I had, I did some thinking: How awesome would it be if the shows - especially RAW - were 90 minutes every week? Every segment would have purpose, which means we wouldn't have to sit through so many cringe-worthy segments. Everyone would have to BRING IT to earn a spot on the show. They could also use this as a reason to enhance the "B shows" like Superstars and [possibly] bring more eyes to THE NETWORK.

Before I go further I'll say this: I am well aware that the company won't do this. The advertising money they'd lose would be ridiculous. I am looking at this through a fan/product perspective only.

But think about it: if RAW is 90 minutes, how much harder would the lower card talent work to earn a segment on the big stage? Because you'd have to have the main event guys, the laaadiieesss, the Intercontinental Champion/division, and the tag teams featured. Cutting the time in half means maybe the worst group (performance-wise) gets cut from any given show. This also means that anyone who is not in those groups will most likely miss every show, unless they can prove their worth.

This is where THE NETWORK and the lower level shows would be key. If you aren't getting over on RAW, you'd be "shipped off" to Superstars. Because of this, Superstars would become more of a training ground of sorts than just a backup show for the brand. These stories would matter and people would take notice. When the people take notice, THE MAN can take notice and make room on the main show for some guys and gals. This also means that, potentially, no one would be safe in a top spot. And that would make everyone work that much harder to not get "demoted" from prime time.

So really, in theory, this works on a few levels:

  • The lower-tier rasslers work extra hard to earn a spot on TV
  • The shows they are on get a boost because of this, making them "matter"
  • The main event rasslers can't coast anymore, for fear of losing that TV time
  • Overall, the product is better because there is more of an incentive to crush it weekly
  • We only have to sit through 3+ hours of TV a few times each month

Again, I know it would never happen because money, but it was fun to speculate. Do you think this could work as I've described? How would you adjust it? Let me know what's what in the comments!

Until next time, don't do anything I wouldn't do!

Crap open a cold one!

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