By Jonathan Brown
Apparently this keyboard and web page have gone to my head.
Who am I to consistently berate a product that generates millions upon millions of dollars? A product that has fans on each inhabited continent spanning the last 50 years, with unmatched history.
In class this week, I taught my students that in order to know what something is you must also know what it is not. For example, if you are asked to identify two images that are the same you must also know which is different. Wrestling columnists have unfairly compared the WWE to nothing else when lobbing complain after complain at Titan Towers.
As a huge Patrick Ewing fan I live and die with the New York Knicks. When Patrick Ewing was traded, fans still went to Madison Square Garden to see the team. The franchise has lived on and will always do so. When their coach, Jeff Van Gundy left, it is a reminder of what Pat Patterson did when he decided that the backstage politics were too much to bear in the WWE. The Knicks will live as will the WWE.
For you non basketball fans think about the Harry Potter movie series. The first two movies were great films. Part of what made them great was that the casting of the characters was superior. Harry looked just as we imagined him when we read the novels. As a matter of fact the most impressively cast character was Albus Dumbledore. His calming demeanor and raspy voice matched the image in our minds virtually identically. Then the actor that played Dumbledore died. His replacement has brought a different style to the character but the movies will never the less gross millions upon millions of dollars. This scenario is reminiscent of the time that the WWE allowed Brock to walk away. While no one may publicly admit it, the newcomer Bobby Lashley is his replacement. I love the potential of this character as do many of you. Again, the WWE will not skip a beat as this new behemoth fills the role of mute, dominant crusher.
Hell, even in politics do we really not have a right to complain. George W. Bush stole the White House in a way most similar to Rutherford B. Hayes one hundred years before. Protesters are still complaining six years later about Dubya and his policies. Last time I checked, America was, is and for the foreseeable future, will be a world leader regardless of the policies of Mr. Bush. You see fans, regardless of who is on the creative staff, the WWE is not in a position to be threatened. You are not going to stop watching and the WWE not fall from its position of number one.
Things change. It is natural to be cautious of them. But mindless complaining means absolutely nothing to the shape and future of the product. What does get altered in each scenario above and with the WWE is our passion.
X-Pac failed because the fans were indifferent to him. Whether he was dead or alive, we could not have card less. What HHH brings to the table is that we really do hate him and want to see him fail. HHH is successful at being a heel. HHH evokes passion in wrestling fans. Christian evokes passion in wrestling fans. Kurt Angle evokes passion in wrestling fans. While the WWE makes decisions that drive us batty, we still tune in. But what is becoming more noticeable is that our passion is dissipating.
Ask the folks at MSG if the Garden is as happening a place as it was during the Ewing days and you will get a resounding NO! While Harry Potter fans love the movie they will tell you that they may not watch it as incessantly as before because Dumbledore is just a little too annoying.
The few Americans that actually vote are a little less inclined to do so now because of obvious loopholes in the democratic process. So don’t complain my friends, show the WWE that we have lost our passion. Stay home from the live shows. Refrain from ordering the PPVs. Avoid buying the DVDs and biographies from the store shelves.
Money talks and your complaints walk.
An that’s the bottom line…because capitalism says so.