The current WWE product is not bad, but it could be so much better
I have been watching wrestling for a long time. It is my first love and passion. Ever since I sat and watched Razor Ramon and Shawn Michaels in their Wrestlemania 10 ladder match, I've been hooked. I got familiar with the history of the WWE and discovered other companies like WCW, ECW and New Japan.
So let's start with what all wrestling fans complain about, the PG era. Fans my age are still living in the Attitude Era. The most successful time period in WWE which lasted from the end of 1997 to 2001. It was this era where wrestling ditched the cartoonish characters for more serious and controversial content.
WCW started this with the birth of the NWO in 1996 which started the Monday Night Wars. The WWE was losing the ratings battle and reacted with their own adult-themed content. The change in programming and competition was more than profitable for both companies until WCW was bought by Vince McMahon in 2001. On a side note, let's not forget what ECW contributed to this as well.
Fast forward to now. Ratings fluctuate, attendance is not consistent, and the WWE is in this state of constant repetition with storylines. How do they fix that? Maybe the answer is simple.
The WWE Network produces two weekly wrestling shows exclusively on their app. NXT and 205 Live. These shows have two things in common. Their both the best weekly WWE shows and both have Triple H as the showrunner. When your network exclusives, that most fans don't watch, are more entertaining than the two flagship cable shows...well, that's a problem.
Triple H has proven to be a great producer and made NXT a phenomenon. He also turned 205 Live around. So maybe it makes sense to have him run the whole company as far as content and produce a pure wrestling show. He certainly appreciates the Indy wrestling scene as the network exclusives are like watching an Indy show.
Speaking of the Indy scene and other companies. After WWE purchased WCW and ECW, there weren't many places for wrestlers to go. There was no competition. A few years ago Ring of Honor and NJPW burst onto the scene and gained exposure that each never had. Because of that explosion, there are more recognizable stars than ever.
So why mention this? Because I think it's time that we get a cross-promotion event that would see the superstars of the WWE take on ROH and NJPW. Imagine Kenny Omega vs Seth Rollins. Kazuchika Okada vs John Cena. WWE is really the only wrestling company that has never had a partnership with another. I think a working relationship with the stars of ROH and New Japan and seeing those Indy stars show up on Raw or Smackdown would mean instant ratings boost.
Now let's get back to that Attitude Era. Fan's need to stop living in the past. We shouldn't want another Attitude Era. Going backward never works. Trying to repeat past successes turns into failures. That's why content now is suffering. Repeating segments is boring and predictable and makes us change the channel.
There are more superstars on the WWE roster than ever before. Some have become main eventers and some have gotten lost in the shuffle. The standouts of NXT that got called up to the main shows have not found much success. That's because what made them unique has been reigned in. They have become just another spot on the roster. They need to be what makes them special. They need be allowed to go out there and just work their style. The product will only gain from that.
So that's my rant for now. What I have expressed in this article are the best ways right now to make the WWE a better product. We don't need mature content, just better content. Make Triple H in charge, partner with other companies, and release the stranglehold on the talent. Simple enough, and I do have a feeling we might be closer to that than we think.