Vince Russo — just the name garners a controversial response. He’s the one who helped write the Attitude Era, which guided the WWE thru the Monday Night Wars against World Championship Wrestling. Alongside Vince McMahon, Russo came up with a lot of original ideas. Even though he did put the WCW Heavyweight championship on David Arquette, that doesn’t overshadow his ultimate success as a booker in wrestling.
Since his departure from Impact Wrestling a few years ago, Russo hasn’t had a prominent role in wrestling. The WWE isn’t going to accept him back anytime soon, even if he was interested in returning to the WWE. Russo’s relationship with the WWE is also unknown. Today’s product also wouldn’t allow Russo to be as creative as possible since his work wouldn’t be suitable to a PG format.
— Steve 9 (@BIGHORSELEGS) November 25, 2015
Recently, Russo talked about one thing that WWE fans have wanted for years. The WWE’s PG product still isn’t satisfactory, and Russo heard from sources that the USA Network may want to change programming, which would include the WWE.
“I’ve heard there’s been some rumbling from USA Network saying ‘You know what? We may have to start getting more edgy.’ USA Network doesn’t want to be politically correct. That’s not their call. That’s coming from WWE,” Russo explained, according to Wrestling Inc.
He continued, “Look at the other shows that are on USA Network from 9-11 at night! They’re not puppet shows. That’s all mandate from WWE. If it continues this direction, I think we’re headed for a showdown between WWE and USA Network, and that’s where you’re going to see some changes.”
There are positive notions going forward about edgier content by the WWE. New stars would be automatically created. Given the freedom, anyone can step it up and take the spot of the top star. “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, the Rock, the Undertaker, Mick Foley, and Kane are numerous examples of guys who capitalized on the Attitude Era.
— Vince Russo (@THEVinceRusso) December 2, 2015
More examples exist, and that only gives more credit to the edgy content created by McMahon and Russo. Additionally, that gave the WWE Creative staff more freedom to write to the proper demographic. They were targeting the adult, 18-40 demo. Right now, that’s one of the worst demos in 2015. It’s easy to say they are catering to kids and families, instead of their best demographic.
WWE Raw is getting record-low numbers on a weekly basis. Granted, multiple stars are either hurt or taking a break from the WWE, and that isn’t helping the Creative’s causes. Vince Russo addressed this very issue.
“Adults are watching adult shows. Shows like this with adult content. It’s adult content. I finished watching the show, and Jeff Lane says ‘it was rated TV-PG.’ The same exact rating that Raw has today. The same rating that people are blaming the low (Raw) ratings on. People say it can’t be dangerous and out of the box because it’s TV-PG. This show was TV-PG, the same exact rating, and we saw language, violence and sexuality.”
Although many fans don’t like Russo, he’s exactly right when he says the WWE needs a big change. That famous backstage meeting in 1997 changed the industry forever. McMahon wasn’t afraid to think outside the box, and Russo helped him do that with good ideas that stuck. It’s a two-way street when trying to get over. The WWE stars need to do as much as the writers.
Every legend should agree with that. Without proper guidance, the WWE superstar will have issues trying to get over on-screen. Cesaro is the perfect example. He did everything he could, but the writing team didn’t. What will it take for McMahon to open his eyes?
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