Wrestling With Ideas

Can the WWE right the ship for 2019?

Brock Lesnar (right) has been hit and miss. Photo by WWE.com

Born with a comic book in one hand and a remote control in the other, Cory DLG is the talent of Conroe's very own Nerd Thug Radio and the sister show Ball Control. Check out the podcast replay of the FM radio shows at www.nerdthugradio.com or www.facebook.com/nerdthugradio!"

So 2018 is over and 2019 is rolling in and for the WWE the new year came with a promise from the McMahon power structure of new year and new theme.

How's it shaping up? Not good so far. The problems they have were created by the guys who right now are promising new ideas and opportunities. To be fair, let's highlight the efforts before we address the problems: getting rid of mandatory rematches, doing an extra round of "call ups" from NXT, and the McMahons are back onscreen after taking the bulk of the year off from that particular role.

How are these working out? Well, the mandatory rematches were a mixed bag, in the middle of a good rivalry it was a great tool, but when something had come to its conclusion or was starting to drag on, then yeah, it was a bad idea. The call-ups haven't hit yet so there's not a lot to judge them on but honestly the NXT guys haven't had a lot of luck coming up to the big times as of yet, and I have a theory why. It goes like this: NXT fans are the guys actively seeking wrestling, so the gimmicks matter less because these fans have seen it all and are watching for the wrestling, but the gimmick is what sells in the big leagues and honestly most of the gimmicks have been awful. As far as the McMahons coming back, I don't really remember anyone asking for that, so this isn't the solution to the problem.

What is the problem? Too many great wrestlers, too few matches, dumb programs that go on way too long and the writing has gotten stale. Between the young guys they have grown into young superstars, the NXT roster they want to give screen time and the amazing women's division that deserves all the screen time they can get, they won't stop bringing in old guys and guys who aren't committed to the show full time. Between the recent return of Brock Lesnar, Undertaker, Kane, Triple H, Shawn Michaels, John Cena, Kurt Angle, Rey Mysterio, Jeff Hardy and Matt Hardy - who all fought in matches in 2018 PPV events - guys like Bray Wyatt, Miz, Daniel Bryan, AJ Styles, Rusev, Elias, Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, Cien Almas and The New Day and others are forced to mid-card and worse. Add in the fact that recent big acquisitions have fallen flat (guys like Gallows and Anderson are terrible personas). Samoa Joe, Shinske Nakamura just aren't entertaining as heels and Randy Orton has NO PURPOSE and you start to wonder about how screen time is being assigned.

When the women's division does get it's B-plots focused on, it's clear they Are being written by the same guys who wrote the 90's pillow fight matches. They just ran a bit where the beautiful Mandy Rose is texting illicit photos to Naomi's husband, because they can't think of another reason two great athletes would want to compete. How is it that the men's division can have five matches a show without ever mentioning each other's personal lives but Naomi (former champion trying to get another title shot) needs to defend her territory, because women are petty? Got it.

So where's the fix? Well stop booking the old guys, that's step one, if they need to be in the Saudi Arabia PPV to finance that deal, fine then book those matches, but don't give it screen time in the States. Make those dark matches and let your two hour advertisement sell the new guys.

The mixed tag team matches are working. They are a great idea and I think there's a future there for that just like it's pretty obvious that the women's division is ready for tag team titles. Also, work on the tag titles on both brands. Right now they are worthless, the divisions are a mess and none of the contenders other than the Usos and New Day move the needle with any consistency. Finally, get rid of Brock Lesnar. It's time when everyone on screen and off screen comments and jokes ON AIR how the universal champ doesn't come to the flagship show. That's a problem.

The times are changing and WWE better stay on the right side of this. If not the young upstarts are circling the water. The Elite, led by spurned former WWE talent, just announced a new wrestling promotion working with a rebel billionaire intent on creating an entertainment brand of its own. Does no one remember the 90's and a little something called WCW?

NERDS AROUND TOWN

Friday plans, Deer Park and WWE HOF

ART BY JESUS RODRIGUEZ

Born with a comic book in one hand and a remote control in the other, Cory DLG is the talent of Conroe's very own Nerd Thug Radio, Sports and Wrestling. Check out the podcast replay of the FM radio show at www.nerdthugradio.com!

Hey Nerds!

Well we made it, it's Friday and to quote renowned American philosopher Homer J Simpson, "Woo Hoo!"

GOOD DEED OF THE DAY

Right now according to the Houston Food Bank, one in five children in Southeast Texas doesn't have enough to eat. Not in Africa, not one of those commercials with a person who used to be famous, shows you some pictures of people with flies flying around living in little mud huts but here in Texas. So look, it's payday, it's Friday, lets put some food on people's plates. For every dollar you donate to the Houston Food Bank it helps provide three meals, you can even make your donation a regular monthly event. Let's get those kids fed, then we can get drunk and get happy!

WHO ME?

So on Fridays I'll try and give you a peek into my life and let you know what I got planned this weekend. Today I plan on getting the weekend "chores" done, grocery shopping and whatnot, then I want to catch the rest of the first round of the Overwatch playoffs somewhere, especially after the #2 New York Excelsior were stomped out of the first round in a crazy upset (shout out to #7 Seoul Dynasty)! Saturday, friends of the show The Adventure Begins Comics, Games and More in Conroe are having Hellboy day, so I'll be swinging by and seeing what all of that's about and Sunday is pleasantly unplanned as of right now, I might hit up a certain Tacopalooza.

THIS WEEKEND IN STREAMING

Now that I've ruined you plans for kicking back and watching The Dirt, if you are struggling to find something to watch this weekend, I have a fun recommendation. If the kids are around and you're looking for a fun thing for everybody to watch, Oscar winning Spider-Man: Into the Spider-verse is out for purchase and I really can't recommend this movie enough. Great soundtrack, crazy visual style, it's the kind of movie you should want your kids to watch because it makes them think a little and still has a great fun ride. If no one's around, go see Us. It's going to be one of those things people are talking about for weeks, just like Peele's last movie Get Out, Jordan Peele is rapidly proving he's one of these guys who when he makes it, we go see it. I'm not mad about that.

WHILE YOU'RE OUT

So this weekend as you're running around, if you're looking for something fun to do that you might not have done here lately, hop into your local comic shop. Comic books actually come out every Wednesday, but only the die-hard guys get out there then, most people wait for the weekend. Swing in and take a look around there's lots of cool things going on, Batman next week is releasing his #1,000 issue most stores are doing something to celebrate that. Go in and ask but there's all kinds of comic books for all kinds of people these days and I think there's something for everyone and that includes you. Justice League is in the middle of a great story, The Avengers mini-series features Conan the Barbarian helping out some Avengers, The Guardians of the Galaxy are in the middle of a crazy storyline involving the Death of Thanos, and there are tons of great independent books too. Companies like Image, Valiant and Aftershock are putting out comic books that are different and worth looking at if you're curious. There are science fiction, fantasy, super heroes, dramas all kinds of madness, it's well worth your time and still a great way to enjoy art.

A WEEK UNDER A SMOKE CLOUD

I don't live in Deer Park, so let me first start off by saying that I feel for those guys and hate that this has happened to them. They basically spent an entire week without knowing what's going on, what will go on, are they in danger? Are they being exposed to harmful chemicals? Was it even safe for them to stay there at all? They did it by trusting the system and the city and the plan in place, but it's starting to sound like overall there were numerous breakdowns in this system. I've heard people express a ton of disappointment in the young, inexperienced county judge. That's probably fair, but she didn't start the fire, she didn't run a company that still a week later can't tell anyone how many gallons of chemical are still onsite. ITC has had very few answers and it doesn't seem like they're going to expedite the answer-getting process anytime soon. The reality is from a corporate standpoint it's in their best interests to say as little as possible, a workplace incident will determine a lot of who bears responsibility for all of this. If it was poorly handled by the company and they knowingly failed in some way that led to this incident then they're at fault. For the sake of their bottom line, they want to solve this as quickly and as quietly as possible without admitting any fault and having to payout as little as possible. I hope local government and the regulating bodies get involved and the people who really were hurt by this, the people of Deer Park, I hope whatever they need to have done, gets done.

EVEN THOUGH NOBODY ASKED ME

I think it's awesome that Harlem Heat are going into the WWE Hall of Fame, but I'm not thrilled overall by this class. I mean it's exciting to have DX get together again, but it's the large version including The New Age Outlaws and X-Pac and not the Shawn Micheals and Triple H version that made the Monday Night Wars so interesting. Honky Tonk Man is a questionable choice also, while he was the longtime holder of the record for longest intercontinental title run, he was overshadowed by the guy he dropped it to, The Ultimate Warrior. It's just not a great class and overall that's my complaint not anything to slight Stevie Ray and Booker T just an observation about the overall class. All of that being said, sincere congrats to everyone!

I'm going to jump out and wish you guys a great weekend and remind everyone to be kind to each other and try a little harder to have a great day! I'm coming back Monday and we'll be bringing more good times your way. Feel free to check out my digital short story The Wilson House, or buy a shirt from Side Hustle Ts where every shirt is now under $20, or listen to Nerd Thug Radio. Thoughts, complaints, events and comments can be sent to corydlg@gmail.com.

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