Welcome back to the column that has tiger blood and Adonis DNA. Oh yeah, and #Winning. Now, I’m sure I’m not Charlie Sheen… but how do we know? How do we know we’re not all a figment of his F-18 imagination? Food for thought…
One last Sheen-ism – he’s a great benefit for keeping kids of drugs… he’s doing his best to do them all before they get near your kids. Buhzinga! Yes, well… there you go. That’s your topical material for the day over and done with. Finger on the pulse? I got it, buddy.
The first thing I want to say is I hope you all read Jimmy Redman’s Smackdown recap. Sterling work from everyone’s favourite Aussie bloke (forum in-joke? CHECK!) as usual. If not, go read it and look forward to it every week.
We’re on that homestretch, heading for Atlanta, and that means WrestleMania. As usual, we’re presented with the furthering of the storylines, characters, feuds and championship chases that usually make up the bulk of the ‘Mania card… but one thing WWE do better than anyone else out there is make the EVENT special.
The constant “point at the sign” or “stare intently at the sign” gimmick may grate on a few people’s nerves, but it puts over the one thing the ‘E want us all to buy into… that it doesn’t matter who’s on the card, or where, or what they’re doing… it’s WrestleMania, baby! And by that, I mean that WrestleMania itself is bigger than whoever is in the main event, or jerking the curtain.
Only one thing comes close to the feeling that the WWE encourage towards the actual show, and that’s The Streak – and even that is reliant upon Mania itself.
By making sure that we, the fan, know that THIS show cannot be missed, that we absolutely have to see what’s going down at WrestleMania above all else in the WWE pantheon, they elevate this one card to a super show. People come from all over the globe to see it. Personally, I’d love to go to one. It’s never gonna happen, but I would go in a second if I could.
Maybe the pointing at the sign has become a little bit cliché over the past few years, but you know what? It serves a purpose. Everybody knows that Mania is the “go home” show of the year; only the Royal Rumble comes anywhere remotely close, and even that now has the tag of “The Road To WrestleMania starts here!” tagged onto it now. All of the WWE’s eggs are in the one basket. This show makes or breaks their year, both creatively and financially. Stars and careers are made or broken in one night.
Everyone, including Vince and the creative team behind the camera, are searching for that WrestleMania moment to fuel highlight reels and DVD sales for years to come. Rock and Hogan squaring off; the epic HBK vs. Undertaker battles; Hogan slamming Andre; Bret Hart and Steve Austin’s once in a lifetime brawl; all of these and more have become synonymous with WrestleMania and the WWE.
This year, we have the mouth watering possibility of The Rock and John Cena squaring off, even verbally, being bandied about. Is this a show of no faith in The Miz as champion? To me, no. It’s purely taking advantage of what’s there. Cena and Rock are the two biggest stars of two very different generations, but there is an overlap.
You can’t tell me that for all that The Miz has accomplished for the WWE this year, both in the ring and in the mainstream media, that Vince is already having wet dreams about that one shot of The Rock and Cena face to face, nose to nose underneath the WrestleMania logo…
Miz is unlucky that his rise to the top has coincided with the return of The Rock to the WWE family, be it short-lived or not. Almost anyone in his position would be grasping the short end of the stick when faced with the situation as it is now.
What Miz has to do is make sure he stays visible, keeps his head above water, doesn’t get lost in the inevitable Rock and Cena confrontations… if he can do that, he can walk out of WrestleMania with his held high… possibly even the Championship. If he can put one over on The Rock, then his credibility shoots sky high too, something he could perhaps do with.
No matter what happens, this WrestleMania represents a changing of the guard somewhat. Just as Bret Hart passed the torch to Steve Austin, and Hulk Hogan passed it to The Rock… this is The Rock’s time to do his bit. Cena is a made man already… will The Rock give him one the boost, or will The Miz be given the ball and told to run?
Personally, I’d opt for The Miz. Cena doesn’t need any more high profile victories. Miz puts one over on The Rock and Cena at once? Nothing on that level has been done since Chris Jericho went over Austin and The Rock to become the first undisputed champion. This WrestleMania… is the time for The Miz… because he’s awesome? Maybe… time will tell, and this could be the first rung on the Miz’s climb up the ladder to true “Awesome-ness”.
Until next time… have fun, go mad.