ECW: How The WWE Could Use This Show To Silence Their Critics
Now I know there have been quite a few articles recently on the state of ECW and also the state of the WWE in general, many highlighting the fact that the fact that their shows are PG make for some extremely poor promos and childish moments (I think I can safely assume none of us were impressed with John Cena writing "JBL is poopy" on his limo, correct?)
In my opinion, the WWE can address both these problems at the same time. Get rid of the PG rating for ECW. They have 3 shows a week, ECW is by far the least watched, and therefore I feel that moving to a later time, and removing the PG rating would make it a far more marketable programme.
Firstly, it would allow them to really emphasize the "extreme" tradition of ECW. The matches could be more hardcore, and it would allow them to work more entertaining, adult storylines with some of the less established stars... hopefully leading them to become bigger stars as a result.
I'm not necessarily saying that they have to go back to "the good old days" of extreme rules matches and blood everywhere all the time. Merely that it would allow for them to bit a bit more risque with weapon usage and language, which I think would immediately attract a lot of WWE fans who are generally more interested in Raw or Smackdown.
Of course, they would need to sell it better on the other shows too, maybe if there is a particular rivalry going on on Raw or Smackdown they could expand it into one or two ECW shows, allowing them to make the rivalry a bit more heated in a non-PG environment. They could then of course show an edited version on the more kid-friendly shows to keep the younger fans up to date whilst not compromising their PG rating.
For example, with the Jeff vs. Edge feud on Smackdown at the moment, and the Hardy reunion this past week. Jeff re-joins Matt on ECW for one night as a tag team, which is hyped on Smackdown and the next Raw. At the top of the show, out comes Edge. He proceeds to slander the Hardys a little harder than he can on Smackdown, leading into a brawl between him, the Hardys, and an incoming Jack Swagger (due to his rivalry with Matt).
Now this doesn't seem like much, but it immediately raises the profile of ECW with Jeff and Edge on it, allows for extra rivalry building in a non-PG environment, and also hugely raises Jack Swagger's profile purely by brawling with the Hardys and Edge.
Obviously this is only one idea, I think they'd also need to improve the writing on ECW, and perhaps lengthen the show a bit (an hour and a half?) to ensure that the use of bigger stars from other brands doesn't cut into the air-time the younger ECW stars get.
I know there's been plenty of other ideas from other writers, such as making the ECW belt be defended 24/7, or bringing back the Hardcore or Cruiserweight titles to ECW, but I think a massive difference could be made with the simple step of making this one programme, that little bit more adult.
Do you think this would be a good step?
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