Wednesday, 28 September 2016
Opinion: WWE - How Much is Too Much?
With the brand split and the ever-growing NXT, WWE has a lot of shows to keep up with. There's Raw on Monday, Smackdown on Tuesday, NXT on a Wednesday, then there's a pay-per-view each month from each of them, then there's Main Event, Total Divas and a tonne of other shows to watch on the Network...AAAAAAH. That's a lot of content to be keeping up with, even if you are only watching Raw and Smackdown.
Now I'm not here to talk about the logistics of it, or how much money it'll be making them/losing them; I'm not qualified to do so and I'm not daft enough to even pretend that I understand the runnings of a multi-million dollar corporation and the logic behind what they do and what they broadcast. As a fan though, and as someone who has kept up with them religiously for the past 5 or 6 years I do have to ask...how much is too much?
I've tried to look at it from an adult perspective; it's certainly going to be hard work keeping up with the three main brands that they have if you're working full-time or are in full-time education. Keeping up with three shows a week is going to be extremely difficult, especially if you intend on watching them all live; that's a lot of sleep you're gonna be missing out on and I've found that as I've gotten older, going into work on a few hours sleep just ain't kosher. I'm old, I like my sleep and the cold weather hurts my hip, what can I say? Then there's the PPVs; if you have work on a Monday morning (I did up until very recently) then you've not got a lot of options if you want to watch it live. You can get the day off but if you want to do that for every PPV then you're not gonna have any holidays left for anything else, or you can try and struggle through a full shift on a few hours sleep (which I again don't recommend at all). Of course you can always just wait and watch it the next day like I used to do but for the people that hate missing it live then I'm afraid you don't have much of a choice, either way doing whatever you're gonna do twice/three times a month is gonna be a lot harder than doing it just the once. Trying to balance full-time work/study plus a social life PLUS your passion for wrestling is extremely tough and not everyone is going to be able to do it with the amount of content that's available to us.
Of course, from the other side of the fence, if you've already been keeping up with Raw, Smackdown and NXT before the brand split then it's really only an extra PPV per month that you're needing to watch. Some might not see it as that big of a deal but considering that the ratings are dwindling for WWE in general it just seems like it's a lot for people to be keeping track of. It doesn't help that almost all of the major wrestling companies and a lot of the bigger indy companies all have their own versions of the Network to keep up with too; when they're putting out more interesting stories than what the WWE are providing us with then of course people are going to switch their interests elsewhere, especially if they only have a set period of time to watch wrestling each week like most of us do. If you keep up with your local wrestling scene then that takes even more time out of your schedule, whether you're attending shows or watching them online. That's been the big one for me; I much prefer going to live shows now than I do watching them on TV/online.
What I've found works for me is just watching the PPVs and doing a monthly catch up of NXT. I don't watch any of Raw and Smackdown (and if I do it's usually because someone has told me that it's a particularly good show) and I don't watch the PPVs live because I always end up falling asleep two matches in and need to watch the rest of it the next day anyway. I've found something that works for me and I'm sure that you lot have found something that works for you, whether it's watching it all live or doing something similar to what I do. I just feel that there's so much content being put out by WWE that it's too much for me to keep interest in anymore.
Let me know what you think, do you agree with me and think that there's too much to bother with now or are you quite happy with the amount of content that WWE are broadcasting? Do you even, dare I say, want even more programmes from them? You can tweet me @LestrangeLock with your thoughts or send me Howlers in the post, whatever's easiest.
Words - Lily Lestrange
Images - James Marston