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garynysmon

Will there be another boom period?

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A quote by Harmonic Generator in the "WWE: the remake" thread got me thinking about this one.

 

HarmonicGenerator, on 21 Sept 2016 - 20:01, said:
Had this thought in the Raw thread this morning and I think it's got potential… we'll see.

The situation is this: Vince has realised that there may never be another boom period in wrestling. He's worried that things will continue to gradually go downhill. So, taking inspiration from modern Hollywood and their infatuation with rebooting and remaking every classic they can get their hands on, he's going to do the same.

 

 

I know everyone says that wrestling is cyclical and who knows what's around the corner. But I genuinely find it difficult to see how another boom period could happen.

With TNA's recent woes, and ROH will never rise above the level its at, the onus is on the WWE. But the obsession with micromanaging everything tells me they're happy to maintain what they have now and not willing to take the risks.

It was the competition between the two major feds in the mid 90's that caused the last boom, while it was Vince McMahon high risk exploits that brought around the one in the 80's. But does anyone genuinely see wrestling breaking into the mainstream again? I can't.

Edited by garynysmon

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I doubt it. I just cant imagine it. The Attitude Era and the Cartoon Era were the perfect storms. The top stars seemed to connect with the culture of the time. When action films and roided up bodies and 80s cheese were cool, Hogan, Savage and Warrior were big. When South Park, Howard Stern and Jerry Springer were huge, the Attitude era broke out and was massive. There's about a million hours of wrestling and no stars these days. WWE may get more popular than it currently is, but the idea of it booming is unthinkable for me. WWE's whole thing is that "its still about, but isnt as good as it was." They pretty much promote that attitude every week. DX were amazing, Austin was class, even racist old Hogan is getting his head back on TV ready for his comeback. They really love pushing that "remember when Hall and Nash were big?" type of thing. Its hard to disagree as well. Wrestling looks much cooler back then than it does now.

Edited by IANdrewDiceClay

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Both booms were basically lightning in a bottle and had so many variables that I can't see it happening again. You could argue that the Attitude Era boom was directly linked to the the cartoon era boom with the original child fans being drawn back in to its teen / raunchier market, a change in demographic that was perfect timing. They were essentially pulling back in lapsed fans and captilising on that. That fan base isn't there any more. Those fans are now either still watching as much as ever, are the jaded internet fans or, most likely, have just left it behind. There will always be that tiny percentage of previous fans they can lure back for one night only when they pull in a few big names but i really can't see any viable way they will get the numbers that the last boom period got (And its been said many times but during the Monday night wars when both shows were doing well there was a large part of those numbers that only watched one show or the other, the combined viewing audience was massive. Those people have gone, never to be bought back. You're essentially looking for a whole new market)

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Suppose it kinda reflects 'pop culture', whats big these days that wwe could copy or be part of? Superheroes are big but that's difficult to translate to wwe, Cena is already Superman, Reigns maybe Batman, Bliss is dressing like Harley Quinn, but difficult to go all the way with it or it'll be a full rip off.

 

Everyone is so fickle and synical these days, films, music, tv, everything is 'shit' and they could do better in there opinions, Films are shit and 'worse movie ever' before there even released, so most things are fighting an uphill battle to be popular

 

Celebrities are'nt the same either, E!, instagram , twitter etc are making nearly everyone famous for a little while (or atleast in there heads)

 

The amount of tv and quality in general is huge with Sky, On Demand services, it must be a nightmare to get noticed and stay popular no matter what show you are.

 

So what can wwe take from the world to be current and more what non fans want? Who knows?!

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Not with the current set up. Vince seems happy enough churning on on his terms, making a healthy profit and what not, which is fair enough. He's created such an array of revenue streams that even if general interest is down, he still makes bank.

 

"Never" is a bit strong. Maybe not in our lifetime, which is sad. WWE are just not that good at making stars these days, which is what it's all about. The biggest it will get in the foreseeable future is if/when The Rock comes back for a match.

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I did write a more lengthy post, but essentially it can be boiled down to what Tiger Rick said. No. The way the world works now won't allow it, kayfabe is dead, the stars are getting smaller and fatter, and our main eventers wouldn't even hold up against the midcard from the attitude era or early 1990s.
I'll say what I said in the Raw thread, but Kevin Owens has right put me off Raw as champ because look at the fucking state of him. EVERYTHING is wrong with him. He's fat and out of shape, but in a fat pub bloke way and not an intimidating Yokozuna way, he dresses in street clothes for fights, he's a heel but is too concerned with making people on the internet laugh. Casual fans I know, and lapsed fans I know who keep an eye on it, don't know why he's the champ and "why isn't Roman Reigns tearing through everyone?". We asked for this and now we have it. Wrestling is no longer larger than life, it's just blokes with workrate. 

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Maybe what we need to ask is 'Will business fall off a cliff like it did in the early/mid 90's' when WCW was drawing 90 fans for house shows and Vince was filming Raws in high school gyms.

Considering the Raw audience has halved in the last few years and the lack of any genuine stars, it may very well.

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I was in a rush to leave work earlier, but what I wanted to add is that everyone bangs on about match quality these days. But has that ever been that much of a factor?

You had big roided up sluggers when the WWF was big in the 80's, and workrate wasn't exactly in abundance in the late 90's either. Workrate seems to be the fallback defence when business isn't great, a bit like Bret/Shawn in 1995/96 really.

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I think the big thing is television and as others have said, the change in how people watch stuff now. The product they produce for TV hasn't changed in 20 years. They still go with the tired formula of giving away everything for free. Back in the late 90's it was needed I guess as WCW was still a major competitor and the ratings war was such a pressure cooker.

 

But over the years the formula that had worked so well in the late 90's had become so tired, and people didn't want to see guy x vs guy y three times in three weeks and then again in the big PPV at the end of the month. Creative has been.......well.......not very creative for such a long time that people have turned off in droves. The fact that there is no real competition within Pro Wrestling means they should really have enough wiggle room to really change things up, more time doing promos, smoke and mirror bullshit without boring matches.

 

The Network is a big change though. I was listening to MSL and Sullivan the other week and someone emailed in and said they will probably only watch the Two Events each month now and leave the TV. They'll still get they're wrestling fix, and wont have to bother watching the guff each week as it really isn't that important anymore. Are they really missing out on the build to the PPV? No, they are missing out on the 2 or 3 matches that don't mean anything and are, more than likely watching the important one.

 

Can there be another boom period? How can it be determined there is one? ratings? PPV numbers? People watch TV in different ways now, people just watch the clips on YouTube. It's still eyes on the product. We cant completely grasp how successful the events/PPV are now as they have done away with PPV model on the whole and replaced it with the Network. Back in the day if all of the PPVs were doing 800k buys we'd be in a boom period. How many people have the network? 1.4M? 

 

I just think things have changed. The last WrestleMania did the biggest attendance of all time, but were in the trenches and things aren't looking good. 

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All main event matches from what i watch now are quite good but i have no connection to them, they may as well just be no name indie guys for all i know or care about them. Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens and their friendship means fuckall to most people, it's hardly Benoit and Eddie. I cant see there being another boom period because anything which gets over organically will be ruined by over exposure and cheesy writing by the office.

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Boom period I think is achievable, but not from WWE.

 

If Lucha Underground signed with Netflix I think they could be onto a huge hit. Capitalising on superheroes and complicated stories that are popular with mainstream culture I really think it could catch on. Because it isn't WWE it would appeal to hipsters who like indie shit.

 

Once lapsed fans have binge watched all three seasons they will be left with a hunger for more wrestling and find that in WWE, maybe.

 

LU is the perfect product to capture the imagination of lapsed fans in today's landscape.

 

However, saying all that they won't be selling out huge arenas. Maybe flog some merch but not on the scale of previous boom periods. It would be a modern boom period, meaning wrestling is cool again. I don't think it would generate the kind of money they made in the attitude era. If you want something similar to what happened in the 80s and 90s, that just isn't achievable. We could get the modern equivalent though

Edited by UK Kat Von D

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Lucha Underground to spark a wrestling boom? Have you been on the sauce tonight, pal?

 

Wrestling is niche. And LU is niche within wrestling.

 

Not even in that Netflix scenario you presented does it in anyway become mainstream. There aren't enough hipster Netflix subscribers anything like interested in wrestling to create a ripple, let alone a boom.

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