Every wrestling fan in the United States of America , or at least those who have USA, My Network TV, SiFi, and WGN), turn on their television to watch WWE’s product. Every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday Night there is a WWE show on.
It brings up that old question; is it possible to have too much of a good thing? Could overexposure be harmful to the wrestling product as a whole? Could the WWE be figuratively “shooting themselves in the foot”?
When I first started watching wrestling the only show I watched was Monday Night Raw. That was all there was back then.
You either watched Monday Night Raw, or if there was something wrong with you, Monday Night Nitro. The WWE only had one show. It was enough to keep the fans happy and exited for what would happen next week and on the PPV.
Then in 1999 the WWE aired the first edition of Smackdown. It was originally supposed to be a special thing like Saturday Night’s Main Event.
However, it soon became another WWE show all on its own. All the superstars appeared on the show as there was no brand split at this time. Having two shows was a great idea considering the WWE's expanding roster.
I remember being extremely happy when this happened as I never got to order WWE Pay Per View events when I was younger and the idea of another two hours of WWE a week thrilled me.
After WWE acquired talent from the now bankrupt ECW and WCW it was apparent that having all of the superstars running around without any sort of limitation on what show they appeared on was a bad idea.
So in 2002 the WWE formed the “Brand Extension”. This simply meant that superstars that were on Smackdown could only wrestle for Smackdown. However, this ruler is abused heavily today. That is something else that annoys me.
I remember liking this concept as each brand had their own World title, Tag Team, and second-tier title.
This concept worked very well. Two WWE shows a week and a PPV every month keep the wrestling fans happy and coming back for more. Its worked very well.
In 2005 WWE held a reunion show for the old ECW featuring member of the original ECW. The show did so well that the WWE brought the show back and decided to make a weekly show out of it featuring its own roster of superstars.
I thought this was a bite much. The show was only given one hour weekly and the superstars on ECW originally only had two PPVs (One Night Stand and December to Dismember) and the WWE”s “Big Four“.
The ECW show was a mess in my opinion and although it was and still is a great place to showcase new talent, it ultimately seems to be a “dead end.”
Three shows weekly is okay, but I think it is a better idea to beef up the Raw and Smackdown rosters rather than trying to fill out another one.
This year WWE launched a new show. "Superstars" debuted on WGN America as a show for all three brands to appear on. No storylines attached.
I like the concept a lot and since it is not a whole new brand in itself it doesn’t spread the already-thin WWE roster even thinner. Although I’m afraid that four shows in the WWE will cause the wrestling fan to get tired of the product and stop watching some of the shows.
With four shows, the WWE has plenty to keep itself busy.
I personally think the WWE would be smart to rid of the ECW show and move all the talent back to Raw and Smackdown.
I know ECW offers a great place for up-and-comers to get their start, but the WWE has to send some name power to the show to get people watching and that ultimately effects Raw and Smackdown negatively.
With four shows a week no wonder the WWE is experiencing low Pay Per View buy-rates. Do away with ECW and keep Superstars; as it has something to offer the WWE audience.
Maybe some don’t like the idea of doing away with ECW, but I firmly believe the quality beats quantity every time.