I’ve been watching wrestling for a pretty long time now and it is rare that things really get to me in a negative way. Of course there are bad parts to almost every show, but most of them come and go without too much trouble. That is not always the case though and unfortunately we saw something like that again this week. To make it even worse, it was the second similar instance in just a few weeks.
Back in November, Charlotte hit Toni Storm in the face with a pie. It was the night after Thanksgiving and WWE felt the need to have a Thanksgiving Leftovers match earlier in the show. Charlotte and Storm came out, with Charlotte hitting her in the face with the pie. Since this is modern WWE, Storm stood there and took it, only to come back the next week with a pie to Charlotte. Then Charlotte beat her up twice in a row and Storm left the company, probably because she just lost a feud that started with a pie being shoved into her face.
Now that was bad enough, but at least it was designed to lead somewhere. Sure it was leading to Charlotte getting another major win and leaving Storm humiliated, but it was better than nothing. You could see the match that was being set up and while the ending left something to be desired, it was at least built around something that mattered. That was the first food based angle, but the second wouldn’t be as high class.
This week on Monday Night Raw, Reggie and Dana Brooke had cheese steaks but had to run away because Reggie’s 24/7 Title sense (just go with it) kicked in, telling him that someone was trying to take Brooke’s title. Sure enough, R-Truth and Akira Tozawa (the latter inside of a trash can that the former was pushing) showed up to go after the title, so Brooke and Reggie through their cheese steaks at them, only to hit Tamina by mistake. Tamina yelled at Tozawa and R-Truth to wrap it up.
Oh and for a bonus: this took place on Tamina’s birthday.
That’s what we have been reduced to with this title. The champ and the guy who (I think) is trying to run a long con to get the title back are throwing food at Tamina, who rants and raves and yells at the other two schmucks involved in the story as a result. WWE, the biggest wrestling company in the world, has nothing better for these people than to waste their (and our) time like this.
The 24/7 Title has been around for nearly three years now and, by design, there has not been anything serious going on for most of its history. It is largely a joke title that is on the show for comic relief. That is all well and good and something that can be done to some rather funny success if things go well. The title has been well used before, but those days are LONG gone.
There have been some good moments, with the various on location title changes, the long running Drake Maverick vs. R-Truth feud and the random celebrities occasionally winning the title, but what has been done lately? WWE has a tendency to find one story and then stick with it for far too long, such as R-Truth winning and losing the title, Reggie trying to live a normal life and having to flip away from challengers, or now whatever Reggie and Brooke are doing. The problem is they keep at it for so long that any of the charm the segments might have goes sailing out the window.
The last few months have gotten even worse though as it is clear that the title has run out of what little steam it had. There is no reason for the belt to still be around and this week was the point of no return for me. I know there have been dumber segments and I know the title has been even less important before, but we have now reached the point where the big gag is seeing Tamina covered in food.
The line that you hear involving WWE comedy is “it makes Vince McMahon laugh”. What else could be the point of something like this? These people are on television every week and have little better to do than something like this. Occasionally they get to have a match, but they are lucky if it goes longer than a minute and a half. Most of the time they are relegated to backstage segments such as this one, making me wonder what the kayfabe reason for them being employed actually is.
This isn’t a division and it isn’t anything that matters to the show. It is there as comic relief, which can be a very nice thing to have if it is working. The problem is those last four words, because this stuff isn’t working. If WWE just has to have the title around, would it be too much to ask to come up with something interesting for the thing? There has to be something out there that they haven’t tried, or at least haven’t run into the ground.
Are you really telling me that no one outside of the usual gang of pinheads can’t get a run with the title? Not even for like two weeks? The longest reign with the title is three and a half months so it isn’t like there is some kind of deep history here. With all of the people who are being let go from the company, there isn’t a single person you could throw out there for a few regular title defenses and then the WACKY chase scenes that serve as the title’s lifeblood?
If nothing else, could you make it seem valuable to someone other than the people who are chasing it every week? Have some middle of the road name pick it up, even if it is just on a whim (the champ is down in the back and someone wanders up and wins it after scaring away the usual cast) and then defend it until someone they’re feuding with drops it back to R-Truth or Tozawa or whoever is going after the thing this week.
In other words, do SOMETHING new with the thing if you just insist on it being around. The title hasn’t been interesting for a very long time and it isn’t like they have had a fresh idea for it in forever. There is too much talent around WWE to waste television time, even that much, on something like this every week. Leave it off television for a bit if you have to so the joke doesn’t feel as stale. Maybe even let the people who have nothing else to do have a segment or a promo or (gasp) a match in the time spent on the belt every single week for a change.
I really don’t mind the concept of the title, as there can be some great moments of comedy if someone is given the chance. Heck, R-Truth has gotten his probably seventh career out of the thing, just through pure charisma and the ability to come up with some ideas. That is only going to get you so far though and we passed that point a long time ago. Find something else to do with it, because what you’re seeing now isn’t worth the time.
The 24/7 Title was never going to be anything more than a joke and that is not necessarily a bad thing. Sometimes a bit of comic relief can help out with things, but ultimately it is going to run out of steam. The fact that the best WWE can come up with is throwing cheese steaks at someone might be a sign that a change is long overdue. This week’s segment got to me, and had me wanting to throw something of my own: my TV to another channel.
Thomas Hall has been a wrestling fan for over thirty years and has seen over 60,000 wrestling matches. He has also been a wrestling reviewer since 2009 with over 6,000 full shows covered. You can find his work at kbwrestlingreviews.com, or check out his- Amazon author page with 30 wrestling books.
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