Another Look At Gimmick PPVs

This is one that’s been discussed a lot. In comments, in articles and just about anywhere else fans talk about wrestling. Some of us are tired of the PPV named after gimmick matches, as we feel that the name/match requirement is beginning to feel forced. Others are tired of certain ones-Hell In A Cell and TLC most notably-because the matches are harder to do right under the PG guidelines WWE is operating under. There are others still that bear the name of a once very enjoyable annual tradition, only to be largely bastardized-I’m looking at you, “Survivor Series.

In light of the recently concluded Hell In A Cell, and inspired by fan comments leading up to, during and following, I feel it’s as good a time as any to take look upon some WWE PPV with a critical eye. Would I keep them, change them or something else entirely….

Hell In A Cell:

Honestly, I would ditch the name. The match itself can remain in WWE’s repertoire, but doesn’t need to remain linked to one specific event. For one thing, it’s been used at events other than the named PPV, so it’s hardly been exclusive.  For another, letting it be employed when called for, rather than when it’s scheduled on the PPV calendar, can make things feel more organic and less forced.

Additionally, because of this current PG era, the match has been sterilized to a great degree. Last night was a perfect case in point. For one, everyone knew those tables were getting broken, as we saw both announce teams take literally everything away from the position ahead of time. Talk about telegraphing. But, for all the action on top of the cage, you just knew that no one-not our key players, not even new corporate stooges Jamie Noble or Joey Mercury-were going to take a fall from the top of the cage. Nope, instead we got a far more tame bump from the middle section of the cell, which while still tremendous, pales in comparison to some of the scarier cell bumps in history.

And, the most obvious other impact of the PG era. Two cell matches, both with a high amount of punishing action and a number of foreign objects in play, and not a single crimson mask was worn. In general, I am fine with the marked decrease in blood. But I do believe, in certain instances, when done right, can add to the event. A cage match, specifically a Hell In A Cell match, is about the best time the WWE would ever have of allowing blood.

How would I change it? Call it Halloween Havoc. You could do any gimmick match you wanted at that point, not just the Cell. Could even let wrestlers spin the wheel to determine the gimmick, if you wanted it to seem less rigged.

Introduced to professional wrestling in the 1980’s thanks to Superstars and Saturday Night’s Main Event, John’s passion for the... More about John Deegan

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