Q&A Friday #49: What Happened To Wrestling?
Question: Do you think pro wrestling will be able to make its typical cyclical comeback into the mainstream as it did in the mid 80’s and 90’s? What kind of changes in the industry, talent, or content distribution do you think it would take?” — Mike_M
Answer: Wrestling’s popularity is cyclical, but I think two things have caused their latest big drop in popularity:
#1) No competition: Wrestling as a whole was better off with the WWE, WCW, and ECW all using different styles and talent to compete for fans. Now, you’ve just got the WWE shows and TNA.
TNA, which puts on a good show, is still really small and the WWE is just awful. When the WWE had competition, they worked hard to put out a good product and it showed. But, now? Their story lines are lame, the matches are dull compared to TNA, and they keep pushing talentless goons for no other reason than they’re huge. They’re just complacent — and that shows, too.
#2) They don’t have a huge mega draw that can capture the imagination of the fans — like Hogan in the eighties, Stone Cold, the Rock, or the N.W.O. in their glory days. They still have talent, but they don’t have anyone who can carry the company on their shoulders and that hurts.
The best thing that could happen to pro-wrestling would be for TNA to take off and actually pass the WWE in the ratings (which looks unlikely). Then you’d see the WWE get motivated again and some of the old wrestling fans who quit watching years ago might start tuning in again.