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DMJ

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  1. Again, its all relative, but just as points of comparison using football and baseball, the average ticket for a Super Bowl is $4000+ (biggest game of the year), while the average price to see a regular season game is still going to be over $50 (think a RAW taping). In major league baseball, which may be a better comparison because teams play so many games, a single ticket to a World Series game is still in that $1000-2000 range, while you can actually go see a regular season game for $40 (think a TV taping or house show). Of course, there are far more nosebleed seats than great, lower level seats, so these baselines are a bit low if we're talking about great views and proximity to the ring. Also, one reason its cheaper to see the Indians or any other team play is because they're not going anywhere. If you miss seeing the Indians in April or May, you can see them in June, July, August, or September. This year, next year, 5 years from now. So, if one is to believe even a fraction of the hype that WrestleMania isn't just your average house show or TV episode and factor in that WrestleMania is the biggest show of the year and it happens only once a year (if not a once-in-a-decade or once-in-a-lifetime opportunity) there should be considerably more urgency from fans to want to attend even during a pandemic.
  2. And looking at the website, its not like tickets are super expensive. There are 2-day combo tickets that don't seem to be in the nosebleeds for $320. That's $160/night. Its more than I would pay, but then again, I've already attended a WrestleMania, don't live anywhere near Florida, and can barely muster the energy to watch WrestleMania from the comfort of my couch or on a treadmill over the course of a full week. I know its all relative - what might seem super expensive to one person wouldn't be so bad for others - but in years past, there seems to have been no issue getting thousands of fans to spend thousands of dollars in tickets, lodging, food, merch, and travel. With limited capacity and plenty of people craving live entertainment, they really shouldn't have had so much trouble selling out the venue even if it was mostly Floridians who live within 3-4 hours of travel. I know I traveled to Detroit for WM23 and didn't even get a hotel (a little under 3 hour trip from Cleveland).
  3. I'd chime in that the emergence of more widely available longform interviews/podcasts has also shed a bit of a light on certain performers' out-of-character dispositions - positive (Kevin Nash) and negative (CM Punk on Oral Sessions). There were shoots available for decades, of course, but free podcasts not only rendered those obsolete but also reached a far wider audience. So, you take the increased exposure and much larger platform of a podcast and add the unfiltered comments of a guy like Austin Aries and, well...the result is that you have a guy that I can no longer watch without thinking, "Good wrestler, total self-righteous shithead." Even pre-Covid, his attitude in interviews wasn't just irritating, it was insulting and made it very clear that he does not appreciate his fans. Having the attitude of, "Everyone else who doesn't eat like me or gets sick is a fat loser and its their own fault because their diet causes cancer" might be great as an on-screen character to get an on-screen reaction, but carrying it over into supposedly out-of-character interviews? That's a hard pass. Finding time to exercise, trying to eat healthy, trying to quit alcohol or tobacco or whatever - they're challenging for lots and lots of people. Hearing someone say, "Well, it's just a matter of will power and if you can't live 100% clean, that just means you have no will power" doesn't "inspire" me. It makes me think you're a condescending prick that I don't need to support. So, if I see you on an indie card, I'm not going. I'll spend my $20 to see an indie show where Kevin Nash waves hello from a stool set up in the ring for 5 minutes over spending $20 to see Austin Aries have a workrate-heavy, technically flawless mini-epic for 30 minutes. And it 100% has to do with my feelings for them as people over me not thinking Austin Aries is a very talented pro-wrestler.
  4. DMJ

    WWE TV 03/22 - 03/28 Roman never tapped

    I think its as simple as Bryan being a ringer brought in to make sure the match doesn't stink. He's had the golden touch in the Thunderdome and, while there will be fans in attendance, I still think the presentation is going to be noticeably "off" and not like a true WrestleMania. Having Bryan in there all but guarantees that the match will be no less than good, maybe really good. I also think, from a storyline perspective, I can see Vince believing that adding Bryan adds intrigue. When it was first rumored that he'd be part of the match, the initial reaction was that he was there to take a pin so Roman wouldn't have to, but I'm not sure Edge is leaving with the title. I'm feeling its more likely that Reigns wins, but how? And does that mean the big story coming out of the show is Edge (heel) vs. Bryan (face) and Reigns goes on to feud with another challenger like Big E? I'm not exactly thrilled by an Edge/Bryan feud, but then again, Bryan's golden touch means it could be great.
  5. I'm an Intervention Specialist (Special Ed. Teacher) who works with students with multiple disabilities/ASD/cognitive disabilities and we use a curriculum called Unique/News-2-You. This week's News-2-You Newspaper is all about WrestleMania! Just thought I'd mention it in case anyone else out there works with this population of students and may not have access. PM me and I can send the PDFs, which are leveled from just pictures to Advanced (still pretty basic, maybe 1st grade level reading). John Cena is mentioned in the newspaper, which I found funny because I don't think he'll be there but is obviously the most recognizable wrestler to anyone born after 2003 - which would be the audience for newspapers written for students ages 5-20. What was more interesting to me was how prominently Bianca Belair was featured. That put a smile on my face. I don't think the WWE necessarily has any input in these things aside from maybe licensing photos. The word "wrestling" is said throughout. Championships are referred as "belts" that you win. The newspaper explains that wrestlers are people playing characters. It also says the wrestling ring is like a stage for the wrestlers to tell stories. Basically, it explains everything that us nerds spend our lives debating - is it a sport? is it an art? - in a succinct article that individuals with cognitive impairments can understand. One of the comprension questions at the end asked students if the sentence "John Cena is the best WWE wrestler" is a fact or opinion and that also made me laugh because I feel like that talking point could be a thread here.
  6. DMJ

    WWE Hall of Fame 2020-21

    The Hall of Fame Ceremony itself would also be more exciting, at least to me, if it was a tighter run show and there wasn't already a glut of podcasts, YouTube videos, etc. where most of these guys have spoken - often much more candidly - about their careers in great details. Like, what is the draw of hearing Rob Van Dam thank colleagues and tell stories for 20+ minutes? You can find interviews and podcasts with him everywhere. Kane? Not exactly a guy I'm curious to hear speak for a half an hour. (Though it could be worse, I guess, if we were somehow all forced to listen to his Libertarian podcast.) In years past, there was some intrigue in hearing guys like Austin and Bret and whoever talk because, even just 5-10 years ago, there was considerably less exposure and content. But, in this age, where we literally are getting hour-long documentaries about guys like Ron Simmons and Yokozuna where we have dozens of talking heads waxing nostalgic? I don't need any more trips down memory lane with these same narrators. A tighter run show that was more segment-based with maybe pre-taped speeches would make it more interesting to me. Or, I dunno, maybe they can guarantee one crazed fan run-in every year and people can bet whose speech will be interrupted and who will take them out.
  7. DMJ

    WWE Network... It's Here

    Yea, I think I'm leaning towards giving Best Buy a call and seeing if what I'm really looking for is some sort of Android tablet - though I must admit that I'm not super knowledgeable about which brands are actually worth trying and because what I'm looking for is kind of specific, I'm hesitant to just buy any old thing from Amazon based on customer reviews. Like, its still unclear after hours of research whether Peacock or even just the Peacock website will work on a Samsung Galaxy.
  8. DMJ

    Hi,

    I was hoping you could maybe help me with a bit more detail just because I'm not super tech-savvy.

    So, if I get a Fire, it comes with a browser, right? And then I could just watch it via the Peacock website?

    I'm feeling like any extra steps - like trying to "sideload" the app without actually downloading it via the built-in store - might be a bit too tricky/frustrating for me. 

    I know its a big ask, but any chance you could do me a huge favor and give it a go on your device to see if Peacock will load? 

    1. Migs

      Migs

      The Fire does have a browser, and it worked fine when I needed it.

      The one piece I'm not sure of with Peacock is watching on a browser and how well it does in that environment - I actually don't have Peacock at the moment, but if I get it soon enough and can find my old Fire I'll let you know. I hadn't been subscribed to the network, but if I can see the new Saved by the Bell reboot and Wrestlemania, I guess I may as well.

  9. DMJ

    WWE Network... It's Here

    I know this probably ain't the place for it, but I trust all the folks here and I couldn't quite get a straight answer elsewhere... So, I watch alot of my WWE Network on an (ancient) iPad while I'm either on a eliptical or treadmill. A few years ago, the actual WWE app stopped working as the iPad became so old that it no longer could handle the OS updates and can't download HBOMax, etc. The workaround was easy, though - I just use Safari to go to the WWE website and watch it from there. Unfortunately, this option is seemingly going to end when the full transition to Peacock happens. Plus, again, its just a matter of time before that site probably won't load correctly either. Also...when I tried to go to the Peacock website today to stream it from there, the site wouldn't load (again, I couldn't just download the Peacock app because my iPad is so old). So, my question to all you PWOers is, would an Amazon Fire HD 10 Tablet work? I like the price point ($150) as Apple products tend to be much pricier but not necessarily necessary for what I'm using this for - which is, again, to mostly just use it as a way to stream TV at the gym. Does anyone recommend another brand? Any tips? Feel free to PM.
  10. I think that's where I get stuck, though. Its like chicken-or-the-egg. Did Hogan/Flair not draw well in 91' because Vince didn't do enough to promote it as a "dream match"? Or did Vince decide not to promote the "dream match" because Hogan/Flair didn't draw well in 91'? Everything you said is right...except I do have to respectfully disagree about Flair being brought in as "some guy." This wasn't Mike Awesome showing up in WCW and Vince Russo thinking everyone would know he was a big deal because of what he did in Japan and ECW. This was Ric Flair, probably the single-most well known wrestler in the US that wasn't in the WWE, claiming to be the real World Champion (because he hadn't lost the title), and almost immediately talking trash about the biggest babyfaces on the roster. Then, at Survivor Series, he inserted himself into the World Title picture by screwing Hogan. Then, he wins the Rumble (and title) at the next PPV in January. I was 7 years old at the time and I knew who Flair was and that he was a big deal. I think most any fan my age or older did. Again, about the rest of this, you hit the nail on the head. WCW clearly succeeded in pushing it as a "dream match" and proving that there was a market for Hogan/Flair after all and Hulk especially (like you wrote, the match was promoted as Hogan's first in WCW which was a big deal on its own, so, one could argue it would've been just as big a success if he'd been put up against someone who wasn't Flair). But it still leaves me wondering why Vince wasn't able to or was resistant to promoting this match as a "dream match"? Does it really come down to not wanting to make Flair seem like an "equal"? And, if that's the case, he still ended up with the World Championship twice, including getting the biggest Rumble win ever, which seems to discount that theory. Or was it one of those things where, he tested the waters via house shows without necessarily giving it a major TV push, and then thought, when it didn't do good enough business, "Even if I did promote this better on TV, it drew so poor low that there's not enough to even build on"?
  11. This is a half-comment/half-question. Prepare yourself. This is what I thought about when I couldn't fall asleep. Was Hogan vs. Sid at WrestleMania VIII just Lesnar vs. Goldberg from WrestleMania XX 12 years earlier? Some context: I've heard numerous reasons given for why Ric Flair vs. Hulk Hogan didn't happen at WrestleMania VIII. Its been said that they didn't do good business on the house show loop. It's been said that Vince didn't feel the matches they had were Mania worthy when he saw them. Its been said that there were "politics" involved (basically neither guy wanted to do the job). Some of these theories have been almost 100% disproven. The idea that Vince was bored or turned off by the Hogan formula doesn't hold water because he not only still had Hogan working on top at WrestleMania VIII but stuck with him for WMIX too. Flair not putting Hogan over, but he was willing to do the job for Savage? For Bret later in the year? For Perfect? For Hogan multiple times in 94'? I just don't buy it. The final theory - that Hogan and Flair weren't drawing - is one I've seen alot...but I always wonder how their supposedly poor houses looked compared to a year prior or a year later. Plus there's that pesky 1994 data when Hogan and Flair actually did finally square off on PPV and it did record-setting buys for WCW. Its just hard to understand why something that was a hit in 94' was going to be a huge flop in 92'. Its not like either guy had had a renaissance in those 2 years. Maybe its been mentioned elsewhere, but it got me thinking - maybe Hogan/Flair at WrestleMania VIII is an Occam's Razor thing. The simplest explanation for why it didn't happen is not because Vince was afraid the show would tank, but because, for lack of a better word, circumstances. In Vince's eyes, he had 4-5 top guys going into the show and an ace up his sleeve with the Ultimate Warrior returning. Two of them were heading out the door, though - Hulk Hogan and Sid. Now, I'm not sure of the exact timeline of Sid leaving - I know he did continue working for a few weeks/month after WrestleMania - but its likely Vince suspected Sid wasn't going to be around much into the summer or had already given up on him. Hulk Hogan (I think ) was off filming a movie (Suburban Commando? Mr. Nanny?) and was taking time off anyway. So, in a sense, booking those two guys against eachother gives you a "double send-off" that you couldn't do if you had Flair/Hogan. In that scenario, if Hogan wins, he still leaves - which buries Flair. If you give Flair the W, well...this is 1992 and WrestleMania and its still a Hulkster-driven company and that would go against the formula. I don't think having Flair go over would've even be considered. So, if you've got Hogan/Sid pencilled in because it makes the most sense to give them a double send-off, you've got to find an opponent for Flair. I think here is where Vince probably looked at it as being Savage or Piper and, ultimately, the Savage/Liz/Flair storyline was just too perfect to pass up. Plus, you could now pair up Piper with Vince's next project - Bret Hart - who had history and, as Bret was not known for his charisma, Piper could inject the needed drama into that story. When you look at Hart/Piper and the Taker/Jake Roberts match (and to a lesser degree Tatanka/Martel and HBK/Tito Santana), you can kinda see that at least somewhere in Vince's brain, he was planning for a post-Hogan/New Generation future - even, if, at the same time, he was obviously perfectly happy giving fans that feel-good formulaic ending by ending Mania with a Hulk Hogan posedown. Fast forward to WrestleMania XX. The fans in attendance are much "smarter" and know that Goldberg and Lesnar are both leaving. Any lines of heel/face are gone as the audience boos the hell out of both guys. At WM8, this couldn't and wouldn't have happened (though its not like Hogan/Sid tore the house down either). Hogan/Sid ended with Papa Shango running down and then the Ultimate Warrior returning to clean house and pose. While Hogan got some shine too, it was a moment to celebrate Warrior's return. At WM20, its Steve Austin who gets the spotlight in the end, taking out both guys and partying in the ring as the crowd cheers. Again, its just an updated version of what Warrior did as, in 1992, if Warrior had come down, beaten up Sid, beaten up Shango, and then beaten up Hogan too, the audience would've been mostly confused (especially all the lil' Hulkamaniacs). But Austin stunning heels and faces and authorities and Santa Claus? Always a pop with every age group. Times had changed, but the booking theory is kinda the same. TLDR - Hogan/Flair didn't happen at WrestleMania VIII because Vince realized he needed to do a double send-off with Hogan/Sid instead...which became the formula for Goldberg/Lesnar at WrestleMania XX.
  12. DMJ

    WWE Network... It's Here

    Maybe someone with more industry knowledge could weigh in, but I'm guessing the rush to get this done also has something to do with Comcast/NBC in a bit of a need for another guaranteed draw after getting exclusivity of The Office boosted its subscriber number considerably in January and not having anything coming down the pike. I'm not sure if its just a waiting game - like it was for The Office - or if they need to renegotiate getting exclusivity for Friends, Seinfeld, and other big NBC hits from yesteryear, but for now, the actual content on Peacock is kinda meager and nothing you can't find elsewhere on more expansive and well-rounded streaming services. Like, when you hear the phrase "NBC App," does anyone else think Homicide? Quantum Leap? Wings? Or have the weird desire to watch that one season of Men Behaving Badly with Ken Marino or the Ferris Beuler TV show? Like, that vault of one-season curios, TV movies, 70s variety shows, and failed spin-offs has got to be jam-packed. But for this being the "NBC app," its got almost none of that. So you turn on the app and its basically just some (but by no means all) of the Dick Wolf shows, episodes of current shows, The Office, all of SNL, and some reality shows. Big whoop. Most of this stuff is still available or was available for years on Netflix, Hulu, and Prime. And, aside from AP Bio (which is glorious), its very thin on original series that I'd really go out of my way to watch. (Again, aside from AP Bio, which is so, so good.) This makes me think the 500k-1m subscribers they get from the WWE was more of a strategic way to bump their numbers in April while they hopefully improve their app and maybe expand the library with more exclusive programs. I know they reported something like 33 million subscribers, but I couldn't find how many are actually paid and how many just subscribed for free (which is what I did for the first few weeks).
  13. DMJ

    WWE Network... It's Here

    Its definitely a huge downgrade and as sek69 said above, it will be met with uproar from wrestling fans. But because this is the WWE (and NBC, for that matter), that uproar will be met with a shrug and a "They'll get over it" attitude. While there have always been problems with it, for the most part, the WWE Network did actually give many of us fans what we basically wanted - all the PPVs (past and present) for the "Big 3," an undeniably huge library of content from the 80s and 90s, and some fun documentaries and extras over the years. I know around these parts there is always going to be a demand for even more - especially classic footage - but I'd reckon that the vast majority of Network subscribers were happy about what they got. This is basically them washing their hands of it, making out with a ton of cash, and leaving it in the hands of a much larger corporation that has even less desire to please longtime fans. Its moves like this that make me feel it really isn't all that out of the question that when Vince goes, the company will be sold and the brand will become just a part of some of mega-corporation's portfolio while Stephanie runs for President. In this scenario, Triple H will probably remain in charge - but to a much, much less degree than Vince.
  14. DMJ

    Good matches "ruined" by their endings

    I know most people hated the Kevin Owens/Roman Reigns Last Man Standing match we just saw but I kinda liked it for what it was or would have at least given it a passing grade. I was sports-entertained enough for me to consider it fine. And then Reigns couldn't get un-handcuffed and any potential suspension of disbelief that one might still have evaporated. It was just so, so cringe.These guys going through tables, getting hit by a golf cart, taking bumps on the floor, clearly working hard to have a violent match in a PG environment only for it end in an "LOL, wrestling is so fake" botch make me feel embarrassed for them.
  15. DMJ

    The aging of wrestling fans

    I know this is a separate conversation, but I think the pandemic might actually end up helping some indies and AEW in the long run. Obviously, its a silver lining/grey cloud thing, but I'll make a comparison to the band Weezer. Weezer had a huge hit debut album, but their follow-up was not as commercially successful and, at the time, not really critically acclaimed either. They basically disappeared from public eye for a couple years, but in that time, their fanbase grew and grew. Older brothers passed it on to younger brothers. Their "difficult" second album grew to be held in the same regard as their debut, if not even more appreciated. When Weezer came back in 2001, they were actually poised to be a much bigger band than they were when they debuted or would've been immediately after their second album flopped. Right now, I've talked with multiple friends who - like myself - had not been to a wrestling show in a couple years before the pandemic. What do we want to do when this is all over? Go to a wrestling show. A local show. An AEW show. Maybe even a WWE show if the price point wasn't too bad. But that's where things get kinda crazy. The WWE is a big production and those productions require stadiums, arenas, etc. and often come at a high cost. But AIW in Cleveland? They ran a show not too long ago in the parking lot of a punk dive bar (the beloved Now That's Class in Lakewood). They can run that again this summer, pretty much no problem, if they want to. I've also seen AIW in large high school-esque gymnasiums where you might have 100 fans in a space that could easily fit 4 or 5 times with high ceilings and wide open areas (in fact, there were rows of chairs close to the ring as usual, but also bleachers along the sides with great vision lines that you could really kick back on and have lots and lots of room for your drinks and snacks). I'd be totally comfortable attending a show like that again. I used to be a once-every-2-years attendee, but now, I'm excited about maybe attending more often. Other indies have already started posting "feelers" to their audience about how likely fans would be to attend a show this summer. Sadly, there have already been some who have responded "I won't attend if masks are required" who I'm guessing would also be upset if deodorant and a 1st grade reading level were required, but I digress. I just think its possible that, 6-12 months from now, when the numbers are *hopefully* much lower, the indie scene - like the indie music scene - will have the opportunity to capitalize on fans desperately wanting live entertainment in a way that the big companies or movie theaters might not see come back.
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