WWE trying new approach to address issue with commercials

WWE honcho Vince McMahon is somehow just now becoming aware that other live sports broadcasts don’t go to commercial break while the action is ongoing.

Well, OK, there’s NASCAR, which does usually run its TV spots in a split-screen with racing action, when it doesn’t go to break during cautions.

And golf. There’s always somebody hitting a ball on a golf course during a tournament. Not that you’re missing much when they go to commercial.

Anyway. If you’re watching the NBA, NFL, MLB, no, they don’t go to commercial in the middle of the game.

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Credit: Destina

But WWE often goes to commercial in the middle of a TV match, especially the longer ones.

Of course, WWE is scripted, so it can get around making sure you don’t miss anything at home by having the competitors in the ring rely on rest holds during the three or four minutes that you’re getting sold pizza, assorted candies and video games.

That way, the folks in the arena, who pay good money to be props for the TV cameras, have something to keep them occupied.

Problem is, you don’t necessarily think of how they’re not really doing much in the ring during the commercial break. You’re likely angry each time they do that, because you assume that you’re missing something, and maybe a lot.

Again, McMahon is just now being dragged into this particular perimeter of wisdom. You have to think it’s because he’s gearing back up for a return of the XFL next year.

And so, voila, we are now hearing that McMahon has issued an edict: no more wrestling during the commercial break.

One way to adjust the content to fit the edict is to go with shorter matches, but you can’t always fit matches into a six- to eight-minute time block.

Meaning: we’re also going to get more two-of-three-falls matches.

OK, to the problems here. One, for the live crowd: so, the first fall comes, and then the guys or gals stand there for three or four minutes, waiting for the signal to get going again.

You at least got rest holds before.

Two, for everybody: we get the continued devaluation of falls and submissions.

We’re now supposed to believe that two wrestlers or teams that will go 25 minutes on a pay-per-view event struggling to get one decisive result will just magically get one every six to eight minutes three times in a row.

Aha. Got it.

And then for the matches that don’t get spread out over three falls: so, I guess those particular matchups aren’t main-event-worthy.

Guess I can check out when the one-fall matches come on, then.

Thanks for the heads-up there.

There’s a lot wrong with WWE these days. Whatever goes on at the live venue during the commercial break is far down the list.

Column by Chris Graham


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