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Are WWE Fans Too Smart-Alec?


Boyo
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Just a quick thread about an issue that has been bothering me for a while.

 

Do you think the internet news sites, and the immediacy of backstage news, gossip, and insider information is taking away from the fun of wrestling? Do you think fans just simply KNOW TOO MUCH to fully appreciate the almost pantomime/soap-opera shows that the WWE are trying to put on? Take some considerations:

 

1. Even on our beloved TWO it appears some people just have SO much inside knowledge that it MUST take away their enjoyment of the product. When your hear, (eg): "I want Mysterio to feud with Cena but we know that won't happen because Cena has entered into a programme with Dupree who we all knew before the draft was made was going to Smackdown, but that doesn't matter because HHH is married to Steph and is a main-eventer for life and he personally can't stand Rhyno so Rhyno will never get a push but he's a good worker, too bad his website is a smarkfest ..." etc etc etc (all made-up, just for arguments' sake).

 

2. The signs in the WWE crowds are starting to bug me, too. I remember back in the days you had little kids with signs saying "Hitman is Ace" and "R.I.P Undertaker", that sort of stuff. Last nigt on Judgment Day, I saw "WWE fears CZW", "Bring Back Teddy Hart" and "Booker Shango" to name a few. Are these fans too smart-alecy, and spoiling it for the rest? (On a tangent, I noticed "JBL does my taxes" which I thought was good, and "Mordecai = Ratings" which was also good).

 

3. Mordecai's debut was very good; he's a slow, methodical guy. What I didn't appreciate were scores of 20-somethings, within minutes, shouting "boooooring, boooooring". What must all the schoolkids in the audience think?

 

Do you not think that if you couldn't predict the winners of PPV (because you didn't know who is sleeping with who etc) that you would enjoy wrestling a whole lot more? It has been said that WWE is a soap-opera, enertainment, and not a sport you'd bet on, because it's scripted.

 

How many of you buy those "Inside Soap" magazines which give away plotlines 6 months into the future? Don't they ruin it if they shatter the illusions?

 

Or is it just Boyo and his moral high-horse?

 

Cheers!

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Well, i have been an "internet fan" for about 2 1/2 years now and being honest it has curbed my enthusiasm slightly. However i must admit with the "inside info" on some upcoming feuds (Eddie/Bradshaw for example) it has saved me the torture of watching some crap tv.
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Yeah I read the Raw spoilers but heres the key thing I do it because I am never in on a Friday to watch Raw, as for Smackdown I watch it on Saturday morning to get rid of the hangover so I don't read the spoilers... As for the insider scoop on the headlines, well yeah I do read the news sites and I see how it translates t the screen but thats not what i watch wrestling for...

 

The reasons I watch wrestling is thus...

1) To see two (wo)men fight it out in a battle of minds and bodys

2) To see if I can predict JR's and Cole's everyword cos its fun

3) Trish Stratus and Torrie Wilson

4) To see if one day Gillberg will be pushed.

 

And 5) So I can mark out everytime Jericho makes someone tap in the Walls, even if I know its gonna happen already.

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yeh i agree 100% i hate cocky people especially ones who dont know their stuff like some internet wretling fans. the problem with the internet and wrestling is its made nothing surprise you especially not if you read about it a month in advance
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Well' date=' i have been an "internet fan" for about 2 1/2 years now and being honest it has curbed my enthusiasm slightly. However i must admit with the "inside info" on some upcoming feuds (Eddie/Bradshaw for example) it has saved me the torture of watching some crap tv.[/quote']

 

Thing is though you only know it's crap cause someone else told you, you might have really enjoyed it.

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From a purely personal point of view I have found that I enjoy wrestling more now that I know the goings on. Sure some of the surprise is gone, but now I can appriciate more what a wrestler actually goes through.
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On a different note, when you take a step back and think.... hmm.... the majority of fans kinda didn't know what the 'smart' ones did beforehand after the Tough Enough programmes... I've actually come to the conclusion that Tough Enough was actually terrible for the business. Fair enough, we all enjoy knowing what goes on backstage and all, and it was enjoyable for us (well.. some) but for your average fan it just told them too much in my opinion.

 

I mean kids would have been watching a programme which was actually centred around the fact that wrestling wasn't real as such... which totally devalues the product in my eyes.

 

However, my feelings are that those who wish to find out all the backstage stuff about how the business works etc should be perfectly entitled to do so... I mean I'm no less of a mark just because I know what is likely to go on etc. In many situations you really would have to be stupid anyway to not predict what's going to happen.

 

I still get emotionally tied up in matches.... if I don't it's because they are crap, not because I'm a smark. Seems more to me like an excuse for a crap match that the evil internet fans are ruining everything. In their defence there are those that do though, but I think I'd be correct in saying that most don't, and still enjoy wrestling, and all the whining that gets done is just because they want to be entertained.

 

But are wrestling fans too smart-alecy and do they make things crap? I'd say no if they make up only a small proportion of the fans, but yes if the smarks make up the entire fanbase.

Edited by Simon
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Great post Simon!!

 

I'll highlight an issue that I should have posted in the intro, but forgot to, but have now just remembered...

 

Consider this:

 

1. A 9 years old boy is sitting at home with his parents, with a few friends, looking fwd to Judgement Day to start. It's his birthday today so as a treat he's having a WWE Party with jelly, cake, soda and a few friends over to watch the PPV. They are discussing the main-event, JBL vs Eddie. What are they discussing? "Who's going to win: you've got big, bad JBL with his awesome limo and Eddie the highflying son-of-a-gun. If Eddie is caught by the Clothesline From Hell it's all over but JBL had better not leave himself open to the three back suplexes that Eddie does...man, I'm so excited!!"

 

2. A couple of 20-something cynical wrestlling fans, who think it's cool to like indy stuff. They are discussing the JBL/Eddie match, too: "Dude, JBL is only getting this opportunity because Vince has demanded it. Other wrestlers are being ignored by this bad worker who can't wrestle. Eddie should open a program with - wait - WHO should Eddie open a program with? Booker T? He's retiring. Taker? Man that guy jobs for no one, besides they're going waaaay OTT with his entrance; he still looks like a biker! Cena? Naah, too green. Dupree? Ditto. RVD? Puh-leez, that guy has lost all interest in the Wrestling business. Pushing JBL like this REEKS of desperation and I'm expecting this to be a crappy match, but I'm staying up anyway just so I sit here with a smug look on my face when I'm proved right."

 

Who enjoys wrestling more? I'm not saying all knowledgable fans are like this, not at all, just the ones who tend to ruin it for the people who want to watch panto wrestling. The guys in the audience who try to be clever; when Bubba Dudley points his finger at someone in the crowd to generate heat and this guy just flips him off. Ruins it.

 

Cheers!

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lol, you make a hell of a lotta sense. But I would say both sides enjoy it as much. it just happens that one side doesn't enjoy it int he same way as the other. The younger child has a blanket over his eyes that everything is real. The older one knows everything about wrestling and is a "smark". (S)He will look for problems and try to argue them out for his or her correct answer with his/her friends. But when the WWE does something good in pushing Eddie Guerrero or Chris benoit, the "smark" will probably enjoy it more because they know that the WWE are listening to the fans and doing what they want to see.

 

I'm going to ramble on now, but I don't have the time. I'll finish this off later!

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I have to agree with Flair, I am a smark, I know things and are cynical of some of the product because of this but I sat and watched the JD event wanting and hoping to be proved wrong and in a way I was. Eddie and JBL pulled off and exciting but not showstopping match, The way Bradshaw tried to put a bloodied Eddie away but couldn't and was getting more desperate was great entertainment. I don't think Bradshaw should be up that high but I was pleasently suprised and enjoyed it when he did his hardest to justify it.
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:worship great thread boyo

 

this is something that annoys me alot. see back in the year 2000 after a 2 year drought of wrestling due to the lack of sky i started watching again, starting with the royal rumble of that year. I loved the stuff and the wrestling really kept me entertained for hours.

 

then in the following year i got the internet, great i thought then i started reading stuff like spoilers and gossip and my love for wrestling grew but my love for sitting and watching declined. Basically it wasnt such a spectacle anymore. I knew what was going to happen and I knew why and all the politics behind stuff. I enjoyed the days when I was a mark and I thought it was real because I got a lot more enjoyment from sitting watching wrestling than I do now.

 

And now Ive started training Im already starting to look at blown spots etc. IMO this isnt good for basically watching wrestling. Although everytime Jarrett smashes the guitar over someones head I enjoy that-The one true spectacle left in Wrestling

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Great post Simon!!

 

I'll highlight an issue that I should have posted in the intro, but forgot to, but have now just remembered...

 

Consider this:

 

1. A 9 years old boy is sitting at home with his parents, with a few friends, looking fwd to Judgement Day to start. It's his birthday today so as a treat he's having a WWE Party with jelly, cake, soda and a few friends over to watch the PPV. They are discussing the main-event, JBL vs Eddie. What are they discussing? "Who's going to win: you've got big, bad JBL with his awesome limo and Eddie the highflying son-of-a-gun. If Eddie is caught by the Clothesline From Hell it's all over but JBL had better not leave himself open to the three back suplexes that Eddie does...man, I'm so excited!!"

 

2. A couple of 20-something cynical wrestlling fans, who think it's cool to like indy stuff. They are discussing the JBL/Eddie match, too: "Dude, JBL is only getting this opportunity because Vince has demanded it. Other wrestlers are being ignored by this bad worker who can't wrestle. Eddie should open a program with - wait - WHO should Eddie open a program with? Booker T? He's retiring. Taker? Man that guy jobs for no one, besides they're going waaaay OTT with his entrance; he still looks like a biker! Cena? Naah, too green. Dupree? Ditto. RVD? Puh-leez, that guy has lost all interest in the Wrestling business. Pushing JBL like this REEKS of desperation and I'm expecting this to be a crappy match, but I'm staying up anyway just so I sit here with a smug look on my face when I'm proved right."

 

Who enjoys wrestling more? I'm not saying all knowledgable fans are like this, not at all, just the ones who tend to ruin it for the people who want to watch panto wrestling. The guys in the audience who try to be clever; when Bubba Dudley points his finger at someone in the crowd to generate heat and this guy just flips him off. Ruins it.

 

Cheers!

 

The problem with this is that your example takes easily one of the worst looking WWE PPVs into consideration. When you get a big show with lots of attractive looking matches like Wrestlemania XX, smart fans and marks will both go crazy.

 

As I've said before, casual WWE fans can be trained to look nearly anything. You put something out there for 2 or 3 months and marks will start to love it if JR and Lawler are shoving it down their throat. The proof? I know people who used to hate The Radicalz, because they were heel midcarders who based their gimmick aroun the in-ring product. These people would prefer to watch Austin give someone a Stunner.

 

Now I talk to the same people, and they say stuff like "I love Eddie, he's funny and a great wrestler!". They say that they think it's cool that Benoit is so psyched up, and they thought it was great that he was the champion. Why? Because Benoit and Eddie had been presented in a new light, where they can hang with the main event stars and do a good job.

 

These friends of mine aren't 8, and I don't own ROH. I realise that they're old enough to see that wrestling is predetermined, but they mark out just as much for a Crippler Crossface or a Frogsplash just as much as they used to do when Austin would hit a Stunner.

 

As long as WWE keep on presenting something in a positive light, the casual fan will be happy. When Raw was rotten not too long ago, people still came on here and said stuff like "That was a great Raw, WWE rules!". There's still a few people who will have good to say about Smackdown!, even in it's current state.

 

There is no skill in entertaining Mr Average Wrestling fan. There needs to be effort put in to entertain the smarter fan though, or else they will criticise. However, I really hate WWE's attitude that the internet fans don't matter. If you put ANY performance or art form in the public domain, you're bound to recieve criticism. The fact that WWE consider their most hardcore fans to be nothing more than a few kids with computers and stoked up egos shows just how out of touch they are with the modern consumer.

 

Personally, I wouldn't have come near a wrestling show for they past 10 years or so if I didn't have the internet. I would have gotten bored with WWF, not found any alternatives and just given up on wrestling. The internet showed me that WWE alternatives exist, and I bought ECW, I bought Puro, I watched WCW. As Simon said, a lot of people who seem to hate the internet seem to use smarter fan's negitivity as a loophole to save WWE's backsides. Surely WWE wouldn't put out a bad show, damn these internet morons! The fact is, the sooner you realise that WWE and the McMahons aren't perfect, and that alternatives exist, the sooner you can enjoy wrestling on a different level. With WWE's roster, every show should be superb. Every show, however, is not superb, so I feel that gives people the right to say "Oi, we're paying for this crap, make it better or I go elsewhere to get my wrestling fix".

 

Don't be like Bradshaw, take a good hard look and realise that the casual fans will leave every time WWE starts sucking, but the hardcore fan will stick around and has a right to criticise.

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Excellent thread Boyo.

 

I enjoy wrestling now no less than I did when I was ten and I thought it was real. I'm just enjoying it in a different way. Take this as an example (and forgive me if I come over as having been a sad sad child):

 

When I was 10, I adored Hulk Hogan. Remember when Earthquake "ended his career" so he could go off and film suburban commando? I was crushed. I actually did cry. Then a few weeks later, Hulk made an appearance on TV to thank all his little Hulksters (of which I was one) for all the support and get well messages. I remember it like it was yesterday; it was a summer's evening, the summer of 1990 was amazing. I was outside playing football with a big group of kids, but EVERY one of us ran inside for ten o clock and wwf wrestling challenge on sky one. I'll remember that promo that Hogan gave that night forever and I'll always see it through the eyes of the ten year old I was. I remember it almost word for word: "Hell NO I'm not retiring! Moments before the broadcast Jimmy Hart, I signed on the dotted line to face the earthquake at summerslam brother! And as I pick him up into the launch position, I'm gonna look all my little Hulksters in the eyes and show them they're believing in the right thing! AND WHATCHA GONNA DO WHEN HULK HOGAN AND HULKAMANIA DESTROYS YOU!!??" I'll tell ya, I was so bloody happy and it was such a rush.

 

It's obviously different now as an adult who knows the ins and outs of the business, and who can pretty much see ahead of time whats gonna happen in 90% of cases. And yet . . . when I watched the triple-threat world championship match at wrestlemania, I felt like I was that kid again. When Benoit locked that crossface on HHH, I was on the edge of my seat begging him to tap. When Benoit broke down in tears, I got a lump in my own throat. It doesn't happen as often anymore, but sometimes, if a match is booked just right, its still possible for me to forget that this is scripted and that it isn't real.

 

The internet hasn't 'ruined it' for me personally. Thankfully, I still have what you'd call "suspension of disbelief". Like when you get so caught up in a book that you forget that its just words typed on a page, or so caught up in a film that you forget that the people up onscreen are really just overpaid actors. I still have that. So while I always know that its not real, and while I'm ALWAYS able to look at a match and go "Hey, y'know Benoit is such a great performer, and so is Michaels, and even HHH performed brilliantly even though he's sleeping with the bosses daughter and I don't like him", there'll always be a part of me that can forget that I'm watching a scripted fight. Its just that now, I'm less accepting of sub-standard booking and performances. And I'm glad of that.

 

The ten-year old loved Hogan cos he was the good guy. The twenty four year old loves Benoit cos he's a brilliantly gifted athlete who has me on the edge of my seat when he steps in the ring to fight. Different reasons, same result: I mark out.

 

Sorry if I've gone on too long. Hope I made sense.

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There is too much smarkness around. Even on these forums, I've seen people stick with smarkish manifesto's purely because its the "in-thing" to do. See any Triple H or Beniot thread for evidence.

 

How can these people enjoy watching the show? I consider myself to have "the right balance of smarkness and enjoyment of the product". This is; knowing whats going on (or led to believe, but I guess this is the point) but still be able to form my own opinions (again, see any Triple H or Beniot thread for evidence).

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I don't understand how you can have a good balance of being a smark and not. Either you are a smark, a smark that still marks out for stuff every so often or you are a mark. Myself, I'd say I'm a smark but if there is something special, I will "mark out" so to speak, about an event. For example, when the ring collapsed on Smackdown a few months ago. I marked out then. On raw, I expect to mark out for The Rock coming back. But I know a lot about the business. I do not claim to know the most or know the least. Even still, I would not dream of HHH bashing just to be the same as others. I did go through a time where I seriously disliked HHH and got fed up of seeing him as champion. But that time has passed. Right now, I don't have much to bitch about as a smark other than the Smackdown product not being very good.
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Take this for example:

 

Diehard football fans talking:

 

1. "Houlier has wasted millions on poor signings, look at Diouf and Biscan they aren't Champions League caliber players"..............."Ferguson’s no better look a Kleberson and Djemba-Djemba"............"Tevez at Boca would a great signing if he's given time to settle in".....

 

"Smark" wrestling fan talking:

 

2. "Its too soon for JBL to main event, casual fans still see him as a comedy tag wrestler"......."WWE need to give he Cruiserweights a chance, they were a great ratings a heat getter for WCW and with the talent WWE have it couldn't fail"................"WWE need to take HHH and Michaels out of the main event scene of Raw, its too stale now".........

 

What’s the difference?

 

Of course your going to get the extreme were they everything from The Rock to who’s holding the IWGP title sucks but the thing is, while you have one extreme being people who are ultra bitter and compelled to hate everything you then get people fancy themselves as being “anti-smarks” and the perfect fan, the sort who blindly defend WWE, HHH, Vince etc at all costs, the sort of people who instantly accuse someone of having a vendetta the moment they something that can construed as negative, hence we get arguments that consist of “your just anti-HHH” as opposed to actually debating anything.

 

There is no right or wrong way to watch wrestling, to some people its just a 2 hour wrestling show they watch while others get into what is really a complex business. If you don't like spoilers or analyses fair enough don't read about them but don't complain about them, while if you do like analyzing wrestling fair enough but your not a better type of fan.

Edited by Tajiri
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Very true. We are all different. But I put this point to all the smarks. If you were to have your own forums and you began arguing over JBL on your forums. This mark says "JBL is amazingbecause he has all this money and tries to give people stock tips. But I hate what he did to Eddie's Grandmother. That was just really low, etc........I don't want him to be WWE Champion". What would you do? Would you try to teach the mark in the ways of a smark?
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Take this for example:

 

Diehard football fans talking:

 

1. "Houlier has wasted millions on poor signings, look at Diouf and Biscan they aren't Champions League caliber players"..............."Ferguson’s no better look a Kleberson and Djemba-Djemba"............"Tevez at Boca would a great signing if he's given time to settle in".....

 

"Smark" wrestling fan talking:

 

2. "Its too soon for JBL to main event, casual fans still see him as a comedy tag wrestler"......."WWE need to give he Cruiserweights a chance, they were a great ratings a heat getter for WCW and with the talent WWE have it couldn't fail"................"WWE need to take HHH and Michaels out of the main event scene of Raw, its too stale now".........

 

What’s the difference?

The difference is that 'example 1' is a sport and 'example 2' is a pre-determined spectacle. If next season, Diouf got his act together and scored 20 league goals it would be because Diouf has knuckled down, focussed, got his confidence up and (obviously) his shooting boots on.

 

It wouldn't be because the Chairman whispered in Houllier's ear "tell El Hadji that he's getting a push, I want to see how the crowd reacts to him with a FA Cup winner's medal...I had a word with Wenger, don't worry, he's said he'll job to us in exchange for doing the double over us next season..."

 

Houllier signed El Hadji Diouf for £10m, he was African Player of the Year for two years running and had a storming World Cup 2002, ripping France to shreads.

 

Vince McMahon signs Ultimo Dragon (here's where my lack of Japanese Wrestlling comes into play), but you get the drift. High profile in his native land, hugely popular, devastating armoury of moves.

 

Both have been poor for their new employers but for differing reasons. Whilst Houllier gets some stick for misjudgment, the blame lies at Diouf's door for being unable to raise his game, he did rip France apart after all..?

 

Ultimo's departure was met solely with criticism for Vince and his writers, THEY failed to utilise Ultimo; it's not up to Ultimo to raise his game, it's up to a script-writer to do this.

 

There's the difference.

 

Great post though, Tajiri, and the rest of you!!

 

Cheers!

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