With the recent buzz about a change in PPV thinking as a result of the network — we don't need Brock because we're not trying to pop a buyrate, etc. — I'm baffled as to how WWE could be so misguided about what will ensnare new subscribers. Isn't it the case that everyone (or very nearly everyone) who will be motivated by old ECW PPVs and episodes of Nitro and the complete SNME is already subscribed? Therefore, aren't they chasing more casual fans at this point? And isn't the allure of a must-see match the ONLY thing that could possibly push the subscriber base forward?
I mean, if they announce, "Hey, we've added every Coliseum Video release," they're basically only impressing diehards who are already subscribing. But if they announce "We're locking Brock Lesnar and Dean Ambrose in a cage," some not-yet-subscribed Raw viewers might think "Yeah, I have to see that." Right? In short: doesn't the network model mean that creating must-see events is MORE important, not less?
Really unimportant secondary question: isn't there tape of Bunkhouse Stampedes and Bashes before '88? Any idea why the Network only goes back to '88 on those two but goes to '83 on Starrcade?
Secondary question first: Because those shows are the only ones that are classifed as PPV broadcasts, where previous Bashes were just compilations of the tour. Starrcades were always classifed as PPV or closed circuit and thus count.
Primary question: The problem is that we don't have any information on who is buying and when. WWE only releases numbers every quarter, so who knows what's affecting subscriptions and cancellations? The market is such uncharted territory now that spending extra millions on Brock is a huge gamble, I'd guess. Which isn't to say that the Brock-Cena DQ finish was not fucking retarded, especially with no followup, but I don't think doing, say, a third Brock-Cena match in a row would have suddenly popped subs.