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    WWE Network thoughts and promo code

    mindspike
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    WWE Network thoughts and promo code Empty WWE Network thoughts and promo code

    Post  mindspike on March 21st 2020, 3:27 pm

    First: I have a promo code for 3 free months of WWE Network for new subscribers - from the cereal promotion. PM me if you want it - FCFS.

    Second: WWE, along with every other large event promotion, has cancelled all of their live performances around the country. They still have to put on three live network television shows every week, though. Everything has been moved to the Performance Center in Orlando and is being filmed in-house. It's kind of surreal to see the empty auditorium.

    They have been relying more heavily on stock footage from previous shows and showing highlights or entire segments. Matches have been cut way back, maybe three new matches in a given two-hour block. More time is being spent on promos. The energy of the crowd is missing, but it's been replaced with something else and I'm not quire sure how to put my finger on it. When they cut away from a fight to go to commercial and then come back, you can see the performers didn't take a break. They're still going at it just as hard as if there were a live audience. No time is being spent in the ring to pump up the crowd. The fights seem more technical.

    It's impossible to forget about a live crowd, but the performers seem to forget the cameras are there. The kayfabe that separates the performers from their characters starts to blur a bit more. On the March 13 episode, I was struck by Bray Wyatt cutting his promo on John Cena. Wyatt is hypnotically charismatic, and his current "demonic Mr Rogers" character is so relateable that you forget he turns into a literal demon in the ring when his alter ego "The Fiend" takes over. But facing Cena, Wyatt - who captures you with his eyes and face - can't make eye contact with Cena. It's like he can't bear to face Cena. Even as he blames Cena for his own (Wyatt's) downward spiral, it's like he fears engaging this man will drag Wyatt's own darkness into the light, instead of dragging Cena's light into Wyatt's darkness. I'm now entranced to see the outcome of a Wrestlemania match I had considered a foregone conclusion. What will happen when Cena and the Fiend collide?

    Last night on Smackdown, BFFs Bayley and Sasha Banks cut a promo together on Paige. Page retaliates by arranging an overwhelming handicap match in which Bayley must defend her title. Sasha gets defensive and starts laying into Paige, who responds by adding Sasha to the contest. We see this all the time, friends having to fight each other for the championship. The usual response is outrage and defensiveness, followed by vows of revenge and a grudge storyline. Critically, performers are given bare minimum details before a segment. Although the outcome of a fight is determined by management (kayfabe warning!), the performers are not told until they head for the ring. The refs and commentators have no idea. Promos are unscripted, and bookings are guarded as closely as fights. So when Paige announced that Sasha would have a shot at Bayley's title there is an instant when the two women look at each other in surprise. Sasha is excited and about to say something, but Bayley just looks... hurt. Her best friend in the world is going to be part of taking away her championship title. These women are professionals and the moment passes in the blink of an eye as they turn away from each other and lay into Paige. But I saw it.

    In the absence of a crowd, why are they still fighting? And are the fights even more personal? It seems to be that way.


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    Paeter
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    WWE Network thoughts and promo code Empty Re: WWE Network thoughts and promo code

    Post  Paeter on March 23rd 2020, 7:17 pm

    So fascinating!

    So, the wrestlers are improvising their characters' reactions to a story they weren't told about in advance? It's like a muscular Whose Line Is it Anyway without jokes?

    Do you think the producers saw what you saw and were bothered by the break in character? Or was that the actors reacting, the characters reacting, or both?

    This whole performance art of wrestling is mystifying and really enticing as you talk about it. Not "gotta make time for a new hobby" enticing, but still enticing.


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    mindspike
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    Post  mindspike on March 25th 2020, 3:01 pm

    It's much less like improvisational theater and much more like a LARP - and you can never understand how much it hurts my heart to say that. Performers are given a scenario to run and then told to run with it. It's not a movie. It's a soap opera. Who are Miz and Morrison going to make fun of this week? Will they get beat up for it? How is Beth Phoenix recovering after being assaulted by Randy Orton? What's going to happen when her husband Edge finally gets his hands on Orton? Plus there are angles that are purely traditional sports. Is Becky Lynch going to be able to defend her championship title from dominant newcomer Shayner Bazler?

    Genuine reactions are something of a golden moment for production when they go right. Keeping surprise moments from the performers is a way to get genuine reactions from them, reactions which the audience will ascribe to the character. Kayfabe isn't what it used to be. Audiences know that Glenn Jacobs - mayor of Knox County, TN - is the masked wrestler Kane - sociopath, pyromaniac, and mentally scarred brother of the Undertaker. AJ Styles even called out the Undertaker by name recently, going so far as to blame Mark Callaway's continual appearance as Undertaker on Callaway's wife. It's tougher than ever to get audiences invested in stories about characters they think are fake, in a medium so far removed from traditional storytelling. So when Shayna Bazler explodes out of her Elimination Chamber cell and goes right for Sarah Logan, Logan's moment of genuine panic is the stuff producer's dreams are made of.

    The acrobatics and martial arts and feats of strength are impressive. They're pro-wrestling's bread and butter. But just like Hollywood, it's emotional drama and a feeling of personal connection that keeps audiences coming back for more.


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    AGoodReed
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    Post  AGoodReed on March 26th 2020, 11:19 am

    My interest in wrestling is slowly rekindling. My focus is mostly on AEW right now. I really like their presentation. I haven't watched this week's episode of Dynamite, but I thought they did a good thing last week by putting other wrestlers in the front row areas. Then the wrestlers had people to play to so they weren't doing their regular crowd taunts to empty seats.

    At this point, I don't really have the patience to sit through full matches anymore. I'm too nit-picky about them anyway. I've been watching all the storytelling stuff that takes place outside of the ring, then watching the beginning of matches, then skipping to the finishes.

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