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Old 06 Aug 2008, 07:45 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Observer notes.

Newsbites from today's Observer.....

Regarding the Mike Adamle decision, it was ultimately a Vince call. Vince said he sees traits in Adamle similar to those of Eric Bischoff. Well, they were both lousy wrestling announcers but I think the similarity may end there. Vince thinks they both project smarmy. Nobody ever projected smarmy better than Bischoff, but I’ve never seen that in Adamle. I see him more as an older guy brought into Alice in Wonderland and being completely out of his element. Vince also believes that Adamle has “incredible verbal abilities” but hasn’t shown it because he never learned to talk in the pro wrestling language, and that’s why he’s been frustrated. Vince enjoyed directing him as a performer, which is a far cry from going nuts on him as an announcer. Time will tell. The reaction by most in the company was apparently not positive on the decision, with some thinking Vince is trying to justify a series of bad decisions related to Adamle, although others backing Vince parrot that Adamle is untapped talent. The decision was one of those secrets that nobody, including those in the ring, were aware of until Shane McMahon announced it. Like a lot of the people at home, as the show progressed, more and more people were thinking Jim Ross and most were shocked.
The new writers initiative is a part of the company’s attempt to position themselves as part of Hollywood as another method of upgrading the company image. It dates back to Kristen Prouty’s hiring to head Celebrity Relations, with her big move getting Kevin Federline to do the angle with Cena on Raw in 2006. Her role is to make sure everything any celebrity needs is taken care of when they are working with the company, to pamper them and treat them like royalty, and something she’s been successful at. She was responsible for putting together all the celebrity videos which is where Freddie Prinze Jr. got hooked up with them. Her success in that role has put her as part of the recruiting team for new writers. Vince wants the writing team to be “well balanced” (his term) as he wants the perception in the TV industry that WWE hires top level TV writers. But, the head writers, Brian Gewirtz, Ed Koskey and Michael Hayes, don’t fit into that mold. Gewirtz was an assistant writer at MTV before coming to WWE nearly a decade ago and got the right recommendations shortly after Vince Russo and Ed Ferrara left. The company is now spending real money, like a major TV show, to get Hollywood writers, not people who may have written a TV show, but someone like Michael Pavone who is something of a minor name, and Prize Jr.

Prinze Jr. is slated to be working under Michael Hayes on Smackdown. His hiring was really not a major topic of discussion among people at the tapings as compared to the mainstream press it got.

Holly, who has been with the company for the better part of 14 years, is on the endangered species list. He’s no longer being used, and at 45, he may not be brought back. The feeling is that someone like Undertaker would have to go to bat for him one more time. Holly has had a rep for being like a Japanese veteran, in that he works very stiff with newcomers (like the Matt Cappotelli incident on “Tough Enough”) with the old-school mentality that they have to prove they can survive in a tough profession. He did that with Brock Lesnar, sandbagging him on a power move causing Lesnar to have to overpower him and it ended up with Holly breaking his neck, although they did work a short program out of it when Holly returned. His role would have been to be in a tag team feuding with DiBiase & Rhodes, but the feeling was he wouldn’t get them over in the right way (he’d lose but make them look bad) and his only role would be to make the newer pushed guys look better than they are. Reportedly Holly’s promo work to further the Rhodes turn program was done, but they decided against airing it because the interviews weren’t good enough. Vince is said to be generally indifferent on Holly, in that he’s kept him around like Funaki forever, but they don’t have any plans to ever do anything with him.

Dos Caras Jr. and El Sicodelico Jr., the nephews of Mil Mascaras, are back in play. Ovaciones in Mexico reported both had signed three-year contracts, although at this writing, that was not the case. At press time, Sicodelico Jr. said he was looking over the contract. WWE officials believe he is close to signing and were considering it a formality. Caras Jr. had first claimed he wasn’t going to come because he didn’t want to spend several months in developmental. In Mexico, several newspapers and wrestling magazines reported Caras Jr. hasn’t signed but is 95% sure he will sign and start in October, after the CMLL tour of Spain. Caras Jr. was on TV on 8/4 saying he hasn’t signed and the offer wasn’t to his liking. Neither is charismatic nor good talkers and that can work against them, nor are either top level workers or great high fliers which a lot of fans would expect about the Mexican wrestlers, although WWE itself doesn’t favor a high flying style. As noted before, Caras Jr. was a multi-time national Greco-Roman wrestling champion who was a mid-level MMA fighter (best known for doing a match in Japan wearing a mask and getting his head kicked off by Mirko Cro Cop) and from a famous wrestling family. To me, Caras Jr., even though he’s a main eventer in Mexico, has always been cold to me as far as charisma goes. His stardom is more based on that he’s a shooter, tall and the family name and technically is fine. The shooting ability, height (because he won’t be in a company where almost everyone is a lot shorter than he is) and Mascaras family will mean nothing in the U.S., but I can see if John Laurinaitis is looking at still photos instead of tapes, he’s the guy you pick when trying to recruit a new star. Super Luchas reported that both would start in Florida Championship Wrestling. There is a feeling they need to be de-programmed of the Lucha mentality and learn American style (Caras Jr. has worked Japan, which isn’t the same thing, but closer and understands how to work with Americans and Sicodelico Jr. has worked Texas for years) and both are earmarked for Smackdown to be the new Hispanic stars. They have better physiques than all but a few of the Mexican wrestlers and the mentality is you find people who look like TV stars and teach them to wrestle, as opposed to finding people who can wrestle but don’t look like TV stars. Sicodelico Jr. also claims a Texas home address and frequently worked indies in San Antonio, so wouldn’t have the Visa issues and expenses that Caras Jr. will have that could delay a start date. Will be interesting to see, with the success of Mysterio, what the WWE’s attitude will be regarding them wearing masks.

There also seems to be a new booking philosophy to almost a TNA Russo style, where everything is built around constant swerves. We had our third Edge and Vickie split in a month on Smackdown, so all the praise about how they weren’t turning this into a Kurt & Karen deal is for naught. Instead of building programs to peak interest in matches, it feels like they lead the audience into thinking something will happen and do the opposite at the end of the show. Time will tell. So far it has been entertaining, but surprises are always good until the product becomes overrun with them. When things always change without a base of consistency, you lose the emotional caring about the product, which isn’t good in the long run.
I told you all the Adamle thing, was a take on Bischoff.

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Old 06 Aug 2008, 11:56 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Adamle impressed me Monday. He needs to stop looking down at notes, but besides that...I like it.
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