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Devon Malcolm

Which was better - WWECW or ECW

WWECW or ECW  

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Edited by Devon Malcolm

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I was a genuine fan of WWECW. Best WWE run of Big Show’s career, same for Stevie Richards, it acted like a precursor to NXT for the likes of CM Punk and Kofi Kingston, rejuvenated veterans like Regal and Christian by giving them a chance to be the big fish in the smaller pond, sowed the seeds for Hall of Pain Mark Henry, had the Colin Delaney angle, and it was only an hour a week. It was good stuff once it started being the third brand and not some weird pseudo offshoot of original ECW.

Oh, and it had the stunning eight man Extreme Rules match with the Originals and the New Breed that would have stolen the show if they’d put it on Mania 23 instead of on free TV the following week.

Edited by HarmonicGenerator

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Stevie had a good run in the WWE considering what he was saddled with, but he, along with Mike Awesome, will go down as unfulfilled potential in my book. Richards had the look, mic skills and in-ring ability to do a lot more than that go nowhere RTC gimmick. He could have been a great mid carder.

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WWE ECW ended up essentially being NXT, especially towards the end where you had the likes of Swagger and Christian feuding for the belt, it really was a hot product at the time.

 

Early WWE ECW is fun to watch is a nostalgia kind of way, it really was a 'Throw mud at the wall' kind show.

 

It's kind impossible to compare imo since they were both so different.

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The original ECW wins this pretty handily to me, though only for the 95-97 period. The WWE incarnation had it's moments, but they were fleeting, few and far between, and against the backdrop of disappointment and apathy. The original ECW was cutting edge television at a time when mainstream wrestling TV was becoming very flat and uninteresting. There is nothing in the second ECW that comes close to the pure quality of that Steve Austin promo, or Mick Foley's promos, or Raven's best promos, or the Sabu/Taz build.

Post-97 and you might have an argument, but even then I still might take the original based solely on the absolute greatness of Yoshihiro Tajiri in 2000. And nobody in the second incarnation was as over or cool as RVD in those late years.

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This here’s what you call domination

It’s a combination of skills and concentration

So rise to the occasion 

Do something amazing 

‘Cause anything that I do, I dominate it

My ECW Champion.

images?q=tbn:ANd9GcRaG7T9NQoXmWE3BVuXETH

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It's a difficult question, because for me it is a comparison of two things so utterly disconnected that it's like comparing chalk and cheese.

ECW was a trailblazing independent company who made the best of what they had, relying on underground anti-establishment feeling to create a buzz while recycling old Memphis story lines, but doing so in a way that was current and contemporary in comparison to the more sanitised product being put out by WWF and WCW.

Conversely, WWECW was an offshoot of nostalgia for the former, which quickly settled in to being something entirely different. A breeding ground for stars not quite ready for the big stage of Raw of Smackdown, where more simplistic storytelling could be implemented on a weekly one hour show. Stars of tomorrow were groomed for bigger things, and new life was breathed into stale acts who had fallen into mediocrity on the big two brands. A product created by a corporate entity, with an eye on the future. 

For me, re-framing the question provides some clarity here. It's not necessarily a case of which was better, but which has aged better?

Even by some ten years after ECW's heyday, much of the early-to-mid ECW stuff had badly dated with outdated tropes that became all to commonplace within the Attitude Era. Over reliance on violent shortcuts, racy content, shock value, and an attempt to appeal to an audience who felt shunned by the more mainstream options, these are things that aged horribly. There was still some great storytelling, and smoke and mirrors use of talent to maximise their strengths, but some of the visual cues that were hallmarks of ECW made it a more difficult watch even a decade on from the company's highest points financially and creatively.

WWECW however, now looking back around the same sort of time period after it's high point, still feels like it has mostly aged very well and you can see the connective tissue that binds it to the presentation they would eventually use for NXT. Nothing feels woefully outdated, nor does the style of the in-ring action seem incongruous to what you see now. It definitely deserves more credit than it gets for being a show that acted as a springboard for the future, and an attempt at a breeding ground for future stars, even if few of them actually worked out in the long term. 

So yeah, both have their relative merits and deserve recognition for their contribution to the industry as a whole, but comparing them is a difficult just because they are such different animals. For me, it's a question of personal preference, and my preference watching either with time having passed is definitely for WWECW. 

TL:DR - WWECW is the one for me

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ECW. The violence was never my bag, but it had a lot more than that. It gave a  platform for genuine technical quality wrestling. Had the cruisers before anyone had really seen that this side of Mexico. Was able to take rather shit wrestlers and turn them into characters (Sandman, Mikey) Had utterly incredible promos from guys like Foley, Raven, Austin, Dudley's. 

The 95-97 run was great. It was genuinely different. If I watch any now, its like watching a punk band from the mid 80s. Its rough as shit, but its still fun.

WWECW had some great moments, but its rather forgettable for me. That's why I go with the original.

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I was a fan of both the first ecw show I seen I was blown away by it was guilty as charged 99 that I bought on VHS from a book shop called chapter's here in Dublin I think it was early 99 . As for wwecw I watched the 1st year of it every week have say I enjoyed it i must go back and watch some of it on the network. 

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ECW introduced us to

Characters like Raven, Sandman, Meanie, Taz, The Dudleys, The genesis of Stone Cold, Tommy Dreamer, Sabu. Even a slob like Joel Gertner was over

Wrestlers like Rey Mysterio, Chris Jericho, Dean Malenko, Eddie Guerrero, Super Crazy, RVD (i'm taking about introducing to a larger audience than they had previously been seen by in US markets)

Influenced the WWE attitude era with its aspects to language and more violent matches.

WWECW

Vince McMahon, Chavo Guerreo and Ezekiel Jackson as champion

December to Dismember (yes ECW had some awful PPv's too but this was a "WWE" production)

the only highlights i can see for WWECW are the ONS PPV (watched back RVD/Cena couple of nights ago and the atmosphere is still spinetingling) and certainly the first one was more of an "original ECW" production than a WWE production. 

 

Edited by Sheffbag

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WWECW was the best wrestling show on TV for absolutes ages. Henrys run as champ, Christian's fantastoc run as an all-star style ace, Regal leaving people's arms hanging off, Goldust doing what Goldust does best, Dreamer's last chance. Just a wonderfully consistent hour of top wrestling, week in week out.

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1 minute ago, jazzygeofferz said:

ECW gave us Heatwave '98. WWECW gave us December to Dismember.

This is the most useless and reductive, and also predictable, post that anyone could make in here. ECW also gave us New Jack stabbing a fat lad, WWECW had a cracking tag match at Wrestlemania. And so on.

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