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Impact Wrestling

Scott,
 
I finally got around to watching Impact today, and agreed that the reality-show type segment was a nice change of pace. And I got to thinking... what if they took it further, and turned Impact into a fake-reality show about producing Impact Wrestling?
 
"The show" would always be in kayfabe and never acknowledge the fake-reality stuff. And "backstage", friends are enemies and enemies are friends. The faces care about the wrestling and the company, the heels don't care if they legit hurt guys and are always checking their messages to see if "Hollywood" has called yet. We'll hear discussion about how the match we haven't we haven't seen yet is going to end.
 
The interesting thing of the experiment would be how the fans in the arena react... if, for example, they take the guy who's the biggest dick "backstage" and push him as the hero of The Show, would the fans boo him because they he's really a dick, or would they play along and cheer him wildly? Either way, you've got story fodder, because the cheers could change his outlook or could make him a bigger dick, or you've got the producers trying to figure out or make excuses about why everyone is booing their hero.
 
However, the more I think about it, the more I realize it would take a brilliant kind of writer to keep the show feeling balanced and not abuse the plot device of characters "going off script" during The Show. It's probably too ambitious an undertaking, but I doubt TNA has anything to lose at this point.

Very interesting idea.  Obviously the business needs some sort of evolution in the basic presentation, and the "show about the show" thing has been successful in other mediums, like 30 Rock most famously.  I'd definitely say it's worth a try.  

Comments

  1.  9]cgquharlie dkauafmna presents tna awr4esltieng! thinmk he'd put Nicaolahs cage inb ap rogram agfaisnbt Harcy!?

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  2. I don't think it would be a great idea for the main show but for something like the WWE network it could really work.

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  3. This is one of the worst ideas I've ever heard for a wrestling promotion/show. Anyone who endorses it has no right to mock people like me who preach patience when it comes to WWE storylines. This is worse.

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  4. SasukespecialmanMay 28, 2012 at 5:50 PM

    You take that back!

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  5. Or they just come up with logical angles, create interesting characters, push new stars and get people interested.

    Im so tired of reading a million ideas about how the business needs to change or what new things need to be done.

    Pro wrestling needs....pro wrestling. Good character, feuds that interest people and blowoff matches. It's pro wrestling. It's worked for like 60 years at this point.

    It's like when the MLS started and they tried to change everything about soccer to make it more American (clock counting down, weird shootouts, etc.) and it didn't work. Then they just played soccer and embraced soccer tradition...and voila MLS gets a new deal with Comcast/NBC.

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  6. I came in here to say about the same thing.  On Impact, we were basically told that title shots are based on having title shots before, how long you've been in the main event, and how much a single person likes what you say.  Angle's two straight wins over AJ mean nothing at all, so why should i want to watch a TNA PPV?  the matches don't mean anything, so why should I pay to see them?  Hogan keeps talking about wrestling needing to evolve and it keeps turning into a bigger mess.  TNA isn't going to become a legit rival to WWE by trying to be WWE.  Instead of the stupid politics and lawsuits, throw out a 20 minute match with guys burning the mat up.  Give them an alternative instead of Garrett and Brooke taking up TV time beacuse of who their dads are.

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  7. This is a brilliant idea. The problem is that if booking wrestling is beyond the current TNA creative team, how do we expect them to be able to script a dramedy too? This kind of thing is just totally beyond the capabilities of anyone who has ever booked wrestling. 

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  8. I literally thought Open Fight Night was going to become American Idol: Pro Wrestling. Thankfully, that didn't happen but I could imagine Hulk playing Simon Cowell, Brother Love as Randy Jackson and Al Snow as Paula Abdul.

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  9.  AND THAT'S A SHOOT, BROTHA!

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  10. Ryan showed up in no condition to perform and was promptly sent home by TNA management.  Wait, I mean he was awarded a title reign.

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  11. It work well as a normal TV series with seasons and time off. Not for a touring full time wrestling promotion.

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  12. Couldn't agree more, and it reminds me of Lance Storm saying on his website some time ago: 

    "Give me some wrestlers I can care about,
    make me believe they don’t like each other, and then book them in a
    match so I can see them fight. When you want someone to build you a cart
    that rolls, you don’t always need someone with ground breaking
    innovative ideas, you need someone smart enough to put 4 F’N wheels on
    the damn thing so it rolls."

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  13. Aw, drunk Ryan has jumped the shark alreadyl Quick, Mr Murphy, put some extra letters in...the more spelling mistakes, you more drunk you can pretend to be!

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  14. For me the "realistic" backstage scenes are looking more fake than anything else. Wrestling is not real. But that aren't tv series or movies either. So why pretend? 

    If you want that the viewer takes it seriously, you have to take it seriously yourself.

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  15. After 16 years of worked shoots, and 11 1/2 years or so of backstage reality when it comes to booking (coinciding with Russo entering WCW), I have never found that stuff entertaining or realistic.  While a halfway decent drama  about the real goings on in a wrestling company might be interesting (similar to Playmakers or First and Ten about football), running an actual wrestling promotion with matches with this concept is just a bad idea.

    I too don't understand why everyone is convinced that wrestling has to change.  I don't think people have changed to much in the last 12 years that they are no longer interested in a well-booked show with good matches.  I'd actually go the other way with wrestling.  I think a strictly kayfabe show with announcers that treat the show like it's real and an end to all the insider garbage is the way to go.  It would provide a healthy alternative to WWE, and may draw in some of the viewers that have stopped watching over the years, even as far back as the 80s.  Breaking the 4th wall like The Gary Shandling Show, Malcolm in the Middle, or whatever is interesting for a bit, but it can't sustain itself.  That's what WWE and TNA do now.  They constantly remind viewers that what we are watching is fake.  Well I know the Avengers is fake too when I first sit down, but I enjoy it a heck of a lot more if for the next 210 minutes I forget that and the writers don't feel a need to remind me.

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  16.  I'd love to see a company have the yambags to go full Kayfabe. I think it would be interesting to see how they can pull that off in this era. I miss the old school style of wrestling, where the matches mattered and the storylines were well connected. Even the crazy ass gimmicks of the 80s/90s, like Akeem, Kamala, Big Boss Man, The Barber, The Snake, etc. They really should attempt doing a classic style, might be fun.

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  17. I think it's a terrible idea for an existing promotion...well, ANY promotion to do. But purely as a tv show with hired actors and what not (maybe some indy guys to help with writing and doing some of the in ring stuff), I would love a 30 Rock-esque show about writing a wrestling show. 

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  18.  Yes. They should not combine the movie and the making of into one thing.

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  19. I agree with what several others have already written...I do not think this is a good idea.  Wrestling does not need to evolve into something new and original.  I think it needs to embrace its kayfabe roots.  Characters need to be established and followed through consistently.  If Kurt Angle is feuding with AJ Styles...you don't want to see them teaming up the next week all buddy buddy.  There should be friction there...unless of course their feud is just a respect type feud.  However, I would not book these often. 

    There should be a clear distrinction between faces and heels and prior to matches the guys should get a minute or two to discuss the match.  Go to the ring and have a decent match.  If its TV it doesn't have to be a marathon.  Just 5-10 minutes of solid action and 5-6 matches on a 2 hr show.  Its ok to have a few lengthy interview segments, but they should not dominate the show. 

    I too wish the announcers and wrestlers would treat it as a true competition where wins and losses matter.  Those with the best records get the title shots and proper ranking system should be recognized.  You can always pad the win/loss records some if they look a bit light, but they should be in line with their actual wins/losses.  And everyone's goal should be to hold a title or be in the spotlight.  Strive to win the World title or a secondary title like the X-Division title.  And lastly a real tag team division with permanent teams, not two guys that have nothing to do teaming up.  I think I'm just looking for something a little more simple.  Two guys hate each other and they wrestle.  Or someone is up for a title shot and trains and focuses on getting that victory.  Keep the soap opera drama to a minimum.  It doesn't have to go away completely.  There has always been room for a feud over a manager or valet or some comedy to lighten the mood. 

    Maybe we will see this type of booking again someday on the big stage.  And because it'll be so long since the last time anyone saw it, it'll be a "new" concept.

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  20. I think wrestling needs to get less "real".

    Wrestling is a story-telling medium so tell stories.  Too much meta kills the drama.  Imagine if Game of Thrones had a scene where Peter Dinklage talked about how he hated Lena Headey and wanted to kill her.  That would be terrible.

    How about they start telling stories with complexity and depth and have character interactions that matter?  Good TV works because you care about the characters because they're a) charismatic and/or b) interesting characters.  There's no reason they can't to that for wrestling.  Don't have Hollywood hacks write shitty wrestling scripts, have them write TV stories that wrestlers can perform. 

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