The People’s Column: WWE’s Battlebowl featuring Cake

Welcome one and all (probably closer to one) to this latest edition of The People’s Column (coincidentally I have always hated that title, but I am too lazy to change it).  As a savvy internet wrestling fan most likely already knows, the WWE recently sent out a survey about potential themes for future pay per views.  I took this survey and found it quite interesting.  Interesting enough to write a column about, actually.  I’m going to breakdown a history of these match/pay per view types and give my opinions (because you read this for my opinions, of course) on each of them.  Now, enough with my ramblings and on with the column!

The WWE Draft: I guess that this would work just the like draft episode of Raw has for the last couple years.  If you win a match, you win a superstar for your show (Personally, I’ve always hated this logic, because why would you want to bring more people to your brand if they will just go after the same championship opportunities you want?).  This may drive some people to buy the pay per view, as it is always one of the highest rated Raw episodes of the year.  However, would people be more interested in results than matches? I feel like people would view this show in results form on a fine and accurate website (like the one you’re reading this column on now!).  Also, since the pay per view is all interbrand matchups, the WWE would have to use up some interesting dream matches that belong on Wrestlemania to get people interested in a show with no titles on the line.

Single Elimination Tournament: This would basically be the King of the Ring tournament.  Interestingly enough, I have always loved this idea.  It creates a major opportunity for an upper-mid card talent to shine in three matches in one night.  It also allows a mid card match to legitimately main event a pay per view.  This show used to create stars where there were none (with the exceptions of Mabel, Ken Shamrock and Billy Gunn).  One problem that this tournament creates for the WWE is the lack of a complete card before the event begins.  This can hinder advertising.  However, it also creates the opportunity for surprise match ups.  Because it is mostly mid card matches, dream matches are not a concern.  With enough time put toward the tournament, this could be a great return for a concept pay per view (or at least one of the Summer 3 hour Raw’s).

Legend’s Pay Per View: This may be one of the vaguest ideas that they have come up with.  Why would I pay to watch Dusty Rhodes main event a pay per view?  Is Jimmy Snuka going to show up and embarrass himself like Wrestlemania 25?  The only thing I would be interested in on this pay per view is the Ricky Steamboat match, because, as we learned this past spring, he still has it (clap, clap, clap-clap-clap).  People pay for a pay per view to see action, and these men cannot deliver.  If this concept worked, TNA’s pay per view buys would be shooting through the roof (I have to insult them at least once in every column).

WarGames: This is the concept most loved by the internet wrestling world.  It provided some of the best matches in WCW history.  However, it also provided some bad ones (any of the mid-90’s matches Hogan was a face in, the Warrior debacle in ’98).  The problem with this match is that there is essentially only one way to book it; the face team lost the coin toss and is in peril with the heel team working them over.  This is entertaining, but it also calls on the need for strong heel and face alliances.  I think that this match could actually replace the Bragging Rights match, but that could get awkward with there being no real reason for Raw vs Smackdown to be in a cage.  TNA also has their own version of this match, but it has been a mess every single year they try it.  Possibly because it was just in one six sided ring that was too crowded with 10 men (although two were usually passed out on top).  I would love to see this match come back, but I doubt it could be an annual event because it’s too repetitive.

Street Fight: All the main events are street fights, with wrestlers in their street clothes (which coincidentally they have to change into after arriving to the arena in their company mandated suits).  This sounds an awful lot like Extreme Rulez (emphasis on the Z) to me.  Again, this would suffer from repetitiveness.  One street fight is usually pretty fun to watch, but two or three would get boring.  Also, the name WWE Street Fight just makes me want to create Street Fighter Characters on Raw vs Smackdown 2010 and use Chun-Li to spin kick the WWE title off of John Cena.

Money in the Bank: If I didn’t count on this match to guarantee a Wrestlemania moment and great match on the annual card, I would love to see it as it’s own pay per view.  This really sounds like a more ladder-y version of King of the Ring.  Men would compete to get into the MITB match at the end of the night.  I really wonder if the WWE could sell this pay per view with all mid card wrestlers.  Also, I would if this match is really worth $45.  Yes, it is good, but it works much better at the showcase of the immortals.

Roulette: Spin the wheel and make the deal! Yes, this brings back some horrible Halloween Havoc memories.  It also reminds me of some of the better episodes of Raw in 2003-2004.  I really do feel like this is another idea that is better suited for Raw, but it could work on pay per view.  Then again, I think people are weary of not knowing what kind of matches they could expect to see.  Think about the low buyrates for Cyber Sunday as an example.  People are more willing to pay for a TLC match then they are for a hat on a pole match.  As much as people love hats, that pole only offers so many options.  Therefore this would not sell well, but would get some great ratings for the USA network.

BattleBowl: This pay per view was a late ‘80s, early ‘90s WCW train wreck.  Mystery teams (randomly assembled!) fight in two on two matches.  The winners of all of the matches will meet in a two ring battle royal at the end of the night to determine… well, that’s the thing, this is too similar to the Royal Rumble if it determines a number one contender.  What else is there to battle royal for though?  Maybe a cake? Or a trophy?  Could this be like the King of the Ring, where it is essentially meaningless, but hard earned and could propel someone upwards on the card?  I doubt it, there’s no crown involved, although cake is delicious.  It is a cute idea on paper that would not work in execution.  There could literally be no advertised matches, and fans will not care enough about the potential “Battle Bowl” Champion to order it on name alone.

There you have it folks, the WWE think tank’s latest ideas!  My own personal favorite would be King of the Ring or WarGames.  I also think that more matches should be fought entirely for cake.  But seriously, the WWE has a shot at bringing something in that fans will absolutely love.  That’s all for this week friends and foes!  Tell me what you think! Is cake delicious?  Should hats be on poles?  Would you watch the Battle Bowl?  Comment to your heart’s content folks!

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