How to Regain a Loyal Fan
by, 04-09-2012 at 05:18 PM (1921 Views)
1) Build superstars of the future; don’t make them over night.
Austin 3:16 says I just whipped your ass!This simple statement was the spark needed to ignite a fuse. The fuse burned, not too slow and not too fast. Austin may have won the King of the Ring, but they weren’t pushing him to the stars. The fans were adding the fuel to the fire. Much like the suspense you feel waiting for the bottle rocket to take off, we felt that suspense with Austin. We knew that the World Title would soon be his, but we were letting the fuse burn in order to ignite the primary charge to launch the rocket. Much like when the fuse disappears just before takeoff, when Austin lost the submission match to Bret Hart at WrestleMania 13, the wait was over. His ascent into the atmosphere had begun.
This is how a stick in the ground becomes a flash of colorful fire. This is how a cylinder of cardboard becomes the Iconic sound of an M-80. This is how a talent becomes arguably the most recognizable face in his industry. Development like this is not seen in the wrestling industry today. We see the likes of CM Punk, Randy Orton, Sheamus being sent to the top tier before they are ready. This is the equivalent of cutting the fuse down on a black cat. You might get away with it a few times, but soon enough the firecracker is going to blow up in your hand.
I touched on this in my original blog, but I feel as though this generation of developing superstars has been affected by the events of the past. Injuries, tragedies, and treasons have left the likes of Punk, Danielson, and even Orton to become the head of a product, when they should still be in transition from the backbone to the shoulders. These guys should be the upper stack of the midcard, transitioning into the main event, and allowing us the time to fully invest in their quest to become head liners. With that being said, I believe that Danielson and Punk are now ready for that level. For Danielson and Punk, I had already had a grasp on their greatness through research, but not every casual fan of the “E Universe” typed in ‘Bryan Danielson Matches’ into their YouTube search bar. Not many casual fans paid for the DVDs from Ring of Honor. A select few had seen the brilliance that was Bryan Danielson v. Austin Aries. This is why the ‘E Universe’ hadn’t fully acknowledged the greatness of “D-Bry” until they witnessed an atrocity of a match that lasted 18 seconds. Sometimes, friction is enough to start a fire without the initial spark.
With that being said, I think this lack of character development is an issue that is being recognized to a point by both the “E” and TNA. My view might not be the most popular, but I believe TNA did the exact thing needed when developing Bobby Roode’s Character. I remember everyone saying in 2010 that he was ready for a championship run. By accident (my opinion), TNA created demand for arguably one of the best heel WRESTLERS since the late Mr. Perfect (once again, My Opinion). As much as he was loved in Beer Money and as a member and voice of Fortune, his heel turn and title run came at a time when I had fully invested into the character. I knew that once he got the World Title, his reign would be great just knowing what he had been through to get to the top of the company.
I feel that the “E Universe” is doing the same with Ziggles, Swagger, and Cody Rhodes. I am far more invested in Cody Rhodes now than I ever was while he was in Legacy. And not because he held the InterContinental Championship as long as he did… Lord knows he wasn’t a “competing champion.” It is because I have had time to be witness to his evolution. From the kid that never spoke, to the Dashing one, to the all around talent his path has led him down. Had they shortened his fuse and sent him to the main event, I am not sure that he could have evolved fast enough to have the longevity. He would have turned out like Orton and Miz. Talent that could have/could still be great, had I only had more time to “Care” about who they were.
These are but a few thoughts on why character development works to create superstars. The wrestling industry as we know it has vastly changed with the surrounding world. The short attention spans that children are currently suffer through has all but replaced what wrestling was. We see titles that were once held for years transferring to people once they garner some minor amount of interest from the crowds. The fact that John Cena is close to the 20+ mark on title reigns due to the “E” giving EVERYONE the belt before their time not only leads into my next topic… It proves the fact that these guys are being pushed too far up, too fast, especially when the “brains” of the business feel the need to take the belt off of them 3 months later. Let them develop and their 3 month reign might turn into a “Credible” 9 to 15 month reign that even the SMARKS of the IWC won’t be able to question.
As always, feel free to comment and I will reply as I can. If your opinion differs, feel free to make your valid points as I always enjoy hearing them. If you feel like you’ve missed out of the direction of this blog, check out the previous blog archives and catch up a bit on where my opinions are based from and what the goal of this serious truly is… How to regain loyal fans.