A great deal of speculation is buzzing around Total Divas, WWE's newest reality show.
Per a PWInsider report (via WrestlingInc.com), management has high hopes for the series, which is due to begin airing on the E! Network on July 28, with the feeling that it will introduce WWE programming to a whole new audience.
It would be nice to think that Total Divas could become a hit show and help bring in female fans to the product.
And who wouldn't like to see hard-working and extremely underutilized girls like Natalya and Naomi—both of whom are taking part in the series—heighten their profiles and emerge as true stars?
But, even before the programme starts, there are already fairly significant problems coming to the surface.
The main thing is that each episode of Total Divas will be an hourlong.
This is simply far too much time and will likely lead to a series full of boring filler material.
Come on, do we really need to see 10-plus minutes of the Bellas getting their hair done? Or half-an-hour spent on whether or not Cameron will get breast implants—no, seriously, that is one of the show's main plot points, as Diva-Dirt notes.
It's easy to see the show struggling to maintain viewer interest. Especially when we consider that most of the girls involved in this show have failed to deliver good numbers on Raw in recent times.
Per the Wrestling Observer (via WrestlingInc.com,) one six-woman tag bout in May, featuring The Bella Twins and The Funkadactyls, lost a frightening 921,000 viewers. Another match in April, again featuring The Bella Twins and The Funkadactyls, had 665,000 people tuning out.
Those numbers are, frankly, horrendous, and they cast great doubt on whether these women can really carry something in the ratings. A short-and-sweet 30-minute time slot would have been far more preferable—and safer—for Total Divas.
Of course, you could say I'm being too quick to the judge a series that hasn't even started airing yet.
After all, the show will provide a compelling look at just what it means to be a woman in modern-day WWE.
John Cena and Daniel Bryan, the real-life boyfriends of Nikki and Brie Bella, respectively, are also due to make regular appearances. That alone should provide some, eh, interesting moments. (I wonder if Cena will wear his gaudy merchandise when he takes Nikki out on dates? And if he breaks up with her, will he tell her "You can't see me...anymore"?)
However, last Monday's skit—in which all seven members of the cast clumsily interacted with each other backstage—may have very well obliterated any hopeful expectations for Total Divas.
OK, so the series hasn't officially started yet, but as a teaser, this gave away a lot.
Make no mistake about it: This skit was truly awful. It was the worst thing on an already abysmal edition of Raw.
The segment was filled with terrible acting, particularly from the Bellas, who attempted to play heel and failed miserably, and horrible, nonsensical dialogue (Brie calling Natalya fat was mind-boggling, even if she is meant to be a bad guy).
Worst still, no one in this skit—not the established girls or newcomers Eva Marie or Jo-Jo Offerman—showed any indication that they were appealing enough to star in a series. Oh, they're all very pretty and seem like nice girls, but is there any real interest in them?
The segment only lasted two minutes, but it felt like an eternity. Come on, is anyone going to tune in Sunday nights on E! to watch an hour of that?
Sad to say, but Total Divas may be headed for total disaster.