Why Isn't More WWE Comedy as Good as Kane and Daniel Bryan in Anger Management?

Sharon GlencrossContributor ISeptember 27, 2012

photo from wwe.com
photo from wwe.com

Let’s be honest: When it comes to producing genuinely funny comedy angles, WWE has always been more miss than hit.

 Oh, sure, there have been some funny segments and skits over the years.

Who can forget the infamous segment in 1998 which saw rebellious babyface Steve Austin drench Vince McMahon and the rest of his crony friends in beer? Or an irate Vince McMahon taking a lie detector on SmackDown 2004 and revealing one shocking and embarrassing fact about himself after another?

And what about heel tag team Edge and Christian’s superb Bill and Ted tribute act in 2000? That was, like, totally, awesome.

But sadly, WWE have also unleashed some truly hideous segments on unsuspecting viewers, all under the guise of “comedy.”

The Attitude era was filled with examples of this. Remember the awful romance angle with Mae Young and Mark Henry? Even most of The Rock’s promos, while expertly delivered, were filled with inane, juvenile jokes.

Things haven’t gotten much better since then. Check out everything DX have done since they revived the act in 2006. No, Shawn and Hunter, fans do not need to see you two 40-something-year-old men acting like a couple of bratty teenagers and making lame jokes.

John Cena always goes for comedy, too, and it rarely works out, with the WWE main-eventer coming off more like he’s doing a bad Jim Carey impression than being a genuinely witty promo guy.      

Partly due to WWE’s atrocious output in recent times, the genuinely hilarious Daniel Bryan/Kane storyline, which sees the two stars attempt to control their violent tempers with the help of anger management therapist Dr. Shelby, is even more of a surprise.

Indeed, the anger management segments are some of the best comedy the company has ever produced, even managing to be a great deal superior to a lot of the bland comedies on television these days.

Why doesn't WWE churn out more comedy like this, you may ask?

Well, for one thing, the writing team tends to be pretty inconsistent when it comes to this stuff.

Long-running Raw writer Brian Gerwitz has a patchy track record: He was a writer for the truly awful 90’s sitcom Jenny, starring MTV star Jenny McCarthy, before getting into wrestling. Since then, he has likely had a hand in some of the awful comedy skits and segments that have plagued WWE’s flagship show. He can occasionally deliver, as these Bryan/Kane skits show, but he’s far from a sure thing.

We also have to consider that a great deal of the time these writers are scripting the show to please Vince McMahon, not the fans. And Vince’s sense of humor is, eh, rather interesting from the sounds of things. No wonder WWE's comedy output has been so woeful over the years.

Hey, the Vince-owned WWE Studios produced Knucklehead, after all, one of the most abysmal “comedy” films of all time. The man's idea of what is and is not funny vastly differs from the rest of us. 

Simply put, due to a variety of factors, WWE have struck gold with this current Bryan/Kane storyline. Just don’t expect them to come up with anything equally as good anytime soon.