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Over the Limit: The State of WWE's PPVs

Rating: 3 votes, 3.67 average.
Last night, a VERY flat crowd witnessed a below average PPV. The only saving grace was the Cristian vs. Orton match. This was the only match that had any, real, high spots. Even then, the stagnent silence upon Ortons victory should have been louder than any cheer to Vince. But once again, there were absolutely no suprises from the WWE again, last night.

There have been very few surprises, or big events that have happened in the WWE this past year. I’m talking about the debut of Nexes, the return of The Undertaker & ‘The Game’, and, of course, the triumphant return of ‘The Great One’ himself, The Rock! But one thing links them all - they were aired on live TV, on Monday night Raw, not PPV. As a consequence, WWE PPV’s buy rates have dropped so far, that in tow main events last year, Brock Lesnar outsold the combined sales of the WWE PPV. So, what does this say about the PPV’s offered by the WWE?

I remember the day’s in the mid 90’s – early 00’s when a PPV was completely unmissable. Can anyone remember Shane jumping off the top of a titantron onto Angle on a table? Can anyone remember The Undertaker launching Mick Foley from the top of the cell onto the announce table? Can anyone remember the three-way TLC match between Edge & Christian vs. The Hardy Boyz vs. the Dudley Boys? You got to see these stars on Raw, but you hardly ever got to see them compete against one-another.

There were very few occasions where you would actually be able to see the two, or however many, wrestlers compete in a match in between PPV’s. Sure, you would see them clash backstage, they would ‘smack talk’ in the ring, they would have interviews (The Rock/Jericho interview was phenomenally funny), but no matches. In fact, I believe it was a fued between HHH & Austin where they signed a contract a month prior to a PPV which prohibited them from laying a finger on one another. Alas, this is not the case in the ‘modern era’ of wrestling, sorry, entertainment.

Nowadays, even Raw’s booking negates the importance of a PPV; who wishes to pay to see a match that will inevitably by aired on Raw the following night, or in the following couple of weeks? For example, Christian Vs. Orton…it was only a few week prior to ‘Over the limit’ that those two squared off. Admittedly, this was to fuel a main event feud void, but, still, the point is valid. So are they important? Well, theoretically, yes. But in reality, no, no they are not anymore…they are distinctly inconsequential. Theoretically, they are important to a feuds climax, but in reality the main event will most definitely be available as a rematch in a day-five day’s time. Is it possible to fix this?

At the moment, the WWE feel that their main-eventers need to compete on TV each week in order to maintain their ratings. But this is quite evidently costing the WWE millions on PPV buys. That basically means that instead of paying for their product, we can watch it for no additional cost for the same entertainment. If the ‘E were to take a more passive approach to TV bookings they could increase the prestige of their stars, and therefore begin to regain their PPV’s prestige. So all in all, the WWE have a largely ‘spotless’ PPV calendar, which have diminished prestige due to their inane booking, and as a consequence they are failing to capture a market which they once claimed complete dominance over other ‘real’ sports, i.e. boxing, etc…It will not be until Vince or HHH learns from this that the PPV will wonce again become important and unmissable.

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Updated 05-23-2011 at 04:31 PM by Frank

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Comments

  1. DXFan619's Avatar
    Great Blog. This was truly an awful PPV, and I must admit, this last RAW was probably the worst go home show in a while.
  2. NWO_Loki's Avatar
    I dig the blog dude. I didnt OTL because i dont waste money on WWE PPV's anymore for mainly the reasons you have laid out. WWE made a mistake when they went on the stock market. It became more about making money to please stockholders than to actually please loyal WWE fans. And while i admit that some of the PG things benefit the wrestler(erm, im sorry ENTERTAINER) like no head shots, other things that have "AWW" appeal like flaming tables, very high risk jumps off things, ect can really still be done safely if properly practiced. How the fuck do you have a extreme rules PPV and have no blood at all? It happens. And fuck Jim Ross for trying to sell it different. But thats WWE. They will sell the shit out anything until you start to believe it yourself. Like John Cena. Enough people can be sold by just having a concept hammered into them. Thats what makes WWE successful and shitty at the same time.
  3. knox's Avatar
    Great blog homie....

    This was one of very few PPV cards that had potential in a long time. Every match was awesome and I really enjoyed the character development of R-Truth & The Bellas....everything was going good until the I Quit Match.

    My question is when is enough enough when it comes to Cena and these unrealistic wins?

    How can the WWE Management have Cena lose to the Miz on the Grandest Stage of them all but somehow beat The Miz and Alex Riley(Tenchincally) in this match?

    What does that do for The Miz's credibility?
  4. Viper's Avatar
    Cena's match last night for example show why he is not on Orton's level or in his league when it comes to believable matches and wins.
  5. The Hit Man's Avatar
    I agree with everything you have said. Another reason why i think PPv buy rates are down is that there are too many of them. For example, there were 3 weeks between OTL and ER. It's pretty hard to create exciting fueds in the space of 3 weeks that people will be willing to pay to watch.
  6. VKM's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by The Hit Man
    I agree with everything you have said. Another reason why i think PPv buy rates are down is that there are too many of them. For example, there were 3 weeks between OTL and ER. It's pretty hard to create exciting fueds in the space of 3 weeks that people will be willing to pay to watch.
    I say that all the time. It would be nice if they had their PPVs set up like how it was when Smackdown had their own set of PPVs and RAW had their own. Or they should a PPV at the end of every month.

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