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Okay, I’m probably writing way, way too early about this subject, but after watching the final episode of ECW, some things have to be said.  I repeat, they HAVE TO BE SAID.

First off, I am appalled but sadly not completely surprised that Christian dropped the title to Ahmed Johnson the Second.  Any faith that Vince McMahon might have built up by giving Christian a long title reign was completely dashed when Jackson won the title.  To me, this shows that old habits never die, especially when you’re Vince McMahon.  I’m sure he doesn’t read this, but if you do, sir, just know that you have disappointed me yet again.  I honestly don’t know why I continue watching a product that disappoints me much more often than it appeases me.  The whole facade is wearing very thin right now.  I should expect by now that Vince will rarely, if ever, give his world championships to men who deserve it rather than these over-roided freaks who can’t put two words or two moves together.  Over 25 years of this crap and people still expect him to change because the fans say he should.  I’m this close to giving up.

Christian should have been the final ECW Champion, no questions asked.  Christian has worked for 15 years i nthis business, honing his craft and building a fan base that enjoyed him for his talents, not his looks.  I don’t care if you think that it’s better to end up putting someone over rather than keep your title.  A guy like Ezekiel Jackson does not deserve to be the last ECW Champion, nor does he deserve to be a champion of any type.  He’s just another one of Vince McMahon’s fetish dolls, there to give Vince’s ego a nice, long stroke.  I am so very angry right now at this whole pile of bullshit that I probably shouldn’t be writing.  But damnit, I’m going to write, because my emotions have gotten the better of me, and these things need to be said.

And now, with that embarassment of an ending to a show over, we get to look forward to the new WWE television show, NXT.  Or, at least, we got to look forward to it before we found out it’s basically going to be Tough Enough 2.0.  Instead of having another wrestling show with the newer WWE talent working their way up the ladder and eventually moving on to the bigger shows, we’re getting a “hybrid live event/reality show, where eight WWE Pros will mentor eight WWE Rookies, who will be fighting for a WWE contract.”  Oh my science, no.  No, no no no no no NO!  This is unnecessary!  You’re taking eight guys who are ALREADY working for you, and you’re making them go through a process where the “winner” gets a WWE contract?  You know what?  No.  Fuck no.  I’m sorry, but this is just stupid as hell.  There are several problems with this show right off the bat.

1) Instead of having another medium for your current roster to compete on television, you’re cramming every now former ECW wrestler onto Raw or Smackdown.  This is going to give everyone less TV time, and a lot of people are going to get lost in the shuffle as a result.  Guys who are already near the bottom may very well get pushed out, and I can’t honestly believe that more than a couple of the ECW guys are going to make any sort of splash on Raw or Smackdown.  Guys like Vlad Kozlov, Yoshi Tatsu, Caylen Croft, Trent Barretta, and probably Lance “Don’t call me Vance Archer” Hoyt are going to turn into curtain-jerkers.  Both Raw and Smackdown are already over-saturated with guys, so adding seven or eight more people is going to screw with the delicate balance that’s barely functioning right now.  And if we get more stunts like Batista’s complete waste of time on Smackdown last week, you’re giving everyone even LESS time on TV.  You’re hurting every wrestler in the company by doing this.

2) Some of the names and pairings for this new show are painful.  While I’ll admit I don’t know most of the new guys coming up, I do know two of the names, and one of them makes me want to break stuff.  Bryan Danielson, the American Dragon, the man who’s actually the best in the world at what he does, will be a part of this.  And the worst part?  His new name is Daniel Bryan.  Dear sweet merciful crap, WHY?  There is NO reason to change his name at all!  His name alone would bring more people to watch your show.  Anyone who’s watched the indy scene even sparingly over the last seven or eight years knows the name Bryan Danielson.  If they don’t watch WWE programming, but hear that Bryan Danielson is going to be wrestling, THEY’LL TUNE IN!  But you tell them that Daniel Bryan is going to start wrestling, the first word out of their mouths will be, “Who?”  Followed by, “Don’t they mean Bryan Danielson?”  Followed by choruses of laughter and sobbing simultaneously, because they just realized that WWE is going to completely bastardize the one man we all hoped they wouldn’t.  It’s a crying shame.  And you know the worst worst part?  His “mentor?”  The Miz.  It actually hurts my brain to think about this.  Knowing where Dragon has come from, it’s painful to think that he’s going to have to play the part of a rookie and have The Miz as his mentor.  The only positive from this is that we now know that Danielson will be competing as a heel, at least for now.  The only other name on that list I recognized was Heath Slater, but I haven’t seen any of his work, so I can’t comment on his pairing with Christian.

I just…I don’t see the point of having a reality show as part of your programming.  ECW was the breeding ground for new talent to rise to the surface and COMPETE, not be mentored by random current employees.  This…this has the makings of a waste of our time.  I don’t want to see FCW guys being “mentored” by WWE guys.  I want to see FCW guys start out beating the ever-loving crap out of each other from the very first minute of the show.  I want to see guys who are being mistreated on Raw and Smackdown get a second chance on this new show, maybe gaining back some of the reputation they lost because of Creative’s complete incompetence at pushing anyone who isn’t 300 pounds of steroid-induced muscle.  Some people say change is a good thing.  Well, in this case, change is not what we need.  What we need is a place for people to compete on television in front of audiences, not do all this reality TV bullshit.  It’s unnecessary.  I don’t really even care that much about the whole WWE contract part of the deal.  I would just prefer to see them wrestle for it, not compete on a reality TV show for it.  And in the end, what happens to the seven guys who don’t win the contract?  Do they stay on NXT?  Do they head to Raw or Smackdown, or do they go back to FCW and another eight guys come up and get their shot?  It bothers me that there are so many unanswered questions.  It bothers me more that Bryan Danielson went through a name change.  But it bothers me most that Vince McMahon thought it was necessary to bring reality television back to his product, and I, for one, am afraid of what’s ahead.

This is the part where I tell you to stay awesome, so I’ll do that, and leave, discontent at what’s going to happen next week.  I’ll still watch it, but if it’s just another stupid reality show, I won’t be watching it for long.

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