Well this feels familiar. I am Ed Scoglio and this is the Shark Attack. It's been a long time since I've sat down and written one of these things, but that damn writer's block finally cleared and I feel ready to get back into the groove of things. Now given the current landscape of pro wrestling I felt a column about TNA fans vs. WWE fans made for my perfect debut column here on Bleacher Report.
WWE fans and TNA fans. I have become enthralled by the back and forth arguments between them. Both sides have passion and both truly believe in what they say. It’s amazing because both want the exact same thing: the prosperity of the wrestling industry. That’s all we want. We want it to be like we are back in the mid to late 90’s where you can go anywhere and hear people talking about wrestling. It was the only thing kids in my elementary and middle schools watched besides Power Rangers and Ninja Turtles. Looking back on it, we were some pretty violent little kids.
But back then; we all had a very clearly defined war between WWF and WCW. There was no denying it. Both companies acknowledged each other and public knowledge was at an all time high. We had some of the most iconic moments in wrestling history happen during this period: Austin 3:16, the formation of the NWO and DX, the rise of The Rock, the Montreal Screwjob, and ultimately, the death of WCW. I’m honestly really proud to have been a part of that. It saddens me a whole lot that we can’t get back to that same joy and happiness, but hopefully in a few years another war between wrestling companies can catch fire and maybe we and our kids can enjoy that magic together in between stopping the Zombie Apocalypse.
Now today many hope that we are on the edge of the next great wrestling war, WWE vs. TNA. But so far, TNA has yet to be mentioned on WWE TV and the only time WWE has even mentioned their existence was on the now defunct industry news section of their website. And that’s not to say that TNA hasn’t put forth the effort to get WWE to acknowledge them. I think we all remember Rhino’s shoot promo on the new ECW and all the pot shots TNA has taken at WWE. But even though war between the companies has yet to break out quite as heavily as it did in 1995, war between the fans has.
What's that? The war has already started? Well in TNA's mind yes it has, but until WWE actually fires back in a clear manner, all TNA is basically a kid eating worms in the schoolyard for attention. TNA is certainly trying, but thus far they've come up short. TNA has all the ability to succeed. It's whether or not they can truly do it that remains to be seen. As much as I don't like their product, I am pulling for them.
WWE fans and TNA fans don’t get along. It is that simple. What is kind of funny is that both fans seem to argue the exact same point. Neither side seems to change what they argue about. I think though for the most part both sides have very smart fans and very dumb fans. A majority of the WWE fans know that the product is vastly different than what it once was and I don’t think many TNA fans really realize this. When I hear criticism at WWE, more often than not, it is a WWE fan first who will say it.
I’ve also come to discover that both sets of fans have nicknames for each other. I’ve noticed that many TNA fans have called WWE fans sheep. I myself have come to call TNA fans monkeys, although I’ve mostly used this term to define the fans in Orlando, who hoot and holler and jump around over a clothesline. I think they try to be the old ECW crowd and they fail. The ECW crowd was a part of the show and made it even more worth watching, whereas the Orlando fans are more annoying.
WWE fan do clearly have their flaws as well. Many of us can be far too blind to the real down time that WWE is experiencing. We do suffer from a blind faith in WWE and far too often do we let our hopes get dashed and we just shrug our shoulders and say, “ Oh well”.I can fall into that category too, but in my defense I just try to put a positive spin on things. I try my best to admit and properly slam WWE when they do something stupid like keg racing on NXT or having the Bella twins wrestle ever.
I also have to say that as fans, we do kind of think we know better than people actually in the wrestling business. I mean honestly, who the hell are WE to tell Vince McMahon what works on a wrestling show? Really? We can be far too demanding as fans. Everyone we want pushed just can’t be because only so many people can get pushed at one time. It’s life and we can’t always get what we want. It is the perpetual state of the wrestling fan; if we aren’t complaining about something then we just aren’t happy. Why do we always have to find some stupid reason to complain about the most inane things? My philosophy about wrestling is to just enjoy it because that's why we fell in love with it in the fist place.
Both fans are greatly flawed, but greatly devoted. The thing is that I don’t foresee any scenario in which WWE fans and TNA fans will ever really get along. We could all be witness to something truly gigantic. If TNA ever really rises to where WCW was and WWE can rise to their past greatness, maybe being a fan can bring us back to where we were when we saw Austin beat the hell out of Jake Roberts or Hulk Hogan spit in the face of every kid who ever loved him. Maybe if we can get that back then maybe we as fans can really enjoy wrestling instead of getting upset when something doesn’t go our way and we can go onto forums and bask in our mutual love of this business instead of arguing over what's better, the Ultimate X or The Ladder Match.
I hope you all enjoyed my debut column here and I look forward to doing many more after this and feel free to leave a comment. I co-host a radio show with fellow Bleacher Report columnist Chad Porto called Lords of Evolution Radio every Tuesday from 9-11 pm est. We can also be found at http://reallordsofevolution.proboards.com/index.cgi. I'll catch you all later and remember...stay out of the water.