This week, Pro Wrestling Illustrated writer Brady Hicks, DJ, and Mr. Akbaz jump IN THE ROOM on WEXP Philly and to discuss some of the more disappointing aspects of Chris Jericho’s return on Raw, Kane and his inexplicable masked comeback, the WWE Network and its B-Level pay-per-view strategy, and how WWE continues to position Daniel Bryan as a nobody. All that, plus great insight from a number of callers, including Brady’s PWI colleague Mike Bessler, the UK’s Vince Gillett, and the ever popular Derrick McDonald!!!!!!!!!! AND, Brady takes a look at this Saturday’s East Coast Wrestling Association (ECWA) show in Newark, Delaware! Check it out today!

16 Responses to IN THE ROOM

  1. Avatar Anthony
    Anthony says:

    Man I want to weigh in so bad.

    Y2J should keep that going. Its a very creative way to build heat.

  2. Call the hotline and chime in

  3. Avatar Vince G
    Vince G says:

    The Jericho thing is kinda cool in that it’s something a bit different but it isn’t exactly entertaining. The last version of Y2J was the serious(boring) Y2J and this isn’t exactly great. His return could have been so much better. He is one of the best talkers around and WWE only has 2 really, one of which is Punk. What’s the point of bringing him back now if this is all he does? If it was a suprise he turned up and then he did the whole not talking thing that might have been interesting but there was no suspense and Jericho didn’t even act as much as an arrogant asshole as he can do. It fell flat and after the first minute or so it was obvious what he was doing. Kane vs Cena sucks, Johnny ace sounds like someone fucking my ears with a sandpaper condom, Ziggler is only now showing his real potential as a character and Miz is somewhere.

    Considering how much time on RAW is spent with people just talking you would think they would use one of the few people who could actually do it well. I’m no more excited now than I was and I think most people feel the same. Given WWE’s track record, even if this kept going on and actually built decent heat you know they will blow the full load the first chance they get so why not just get it over with.

    I do think there is a chance that there is a women involved that we haven’t seen yet that was mentioned in the video. Either it is Kharma which Is so unlikely it isn’t even worth thinking about. She did the no talk thing too. Steph has been doing a bit more stuff recently so it could be her and they could somehow tie that into Punk/Laurinitis. Or maybe it could be Lay or Cool.

  4. Avatar Vince G
    Vince G says:

    Actually I changed my mind and I think this is actually good idea and this is why.

    Jericho went back and forth on Twitter with Punk and to a lesser extent Miz about them ripping him off. So he comes back and what does he do? He copies what Punk has been doing since he turned face and kept running round the crowd getting them to cheer for him. He even made a point of posing with all the Punk fans as DJ pointed out. So he can come out next week or whenever and say that if Punk is going to copy him he will do the same. Ryder and Danielson also keep running up to the crowd all excited so it gives him an excuse to mock them too if he wanted to.

    Not only that but he can say his no talking thing is meant to be poking fun at all the texting and RAW GM stuff that has happened over the last year. Poking fun at the current product is another Punk trademark and thing Jericho did, so again i draws a comparison that is perfect for a feud.

    • Avatar Kevin McElvaney
      Kevin McElvaney says:

      All perfectly valid points. But Punk feuding with a “just passin through” Jericho is a step backwards for Punk. And so, even though I think you are probably right, I hope you are wrong. Punk is on the cusp of being a Cena-level star, and Jericho is the guy who elevates upper midcarders. Just my piece. I’ll discuss more on this week’s BSH.

      • Avatar Vince G
        Vince G says:

        I agree (and will tune in) the thing is the perception of both the fans and WWE. I never felt Rock had to beat or even face Hogan to be considered an all time great but most people seem to disagree. Similarly I don’t think Y2J had to beat HBK to get any sort of validation but it was nice and they put on a great feud and had classic matches. To me this is someone with little faith in Punk inside WWE trying to hammer home THIS IS NEW JERICHO. Punk doesn’t need this and has stepped up to Cena-ish level and is filling a void. The void wouldn’t have been as big had WWE put more effort into building up guys like Punk when Y2J,HHH,Undertaker were all full time.

  5. Avatar Jason
    Jason says:

    I actually tuned in to watch the Y2J stuff this week. Im not really sure how I feel about it. As a 10-15 minute segment I thought it was brutal. Not as bad as the John Cena this is your life with Mick Foley, but just pretty boring. I think that is the difference with something being conceptually great but then playing out differently. When you watch the short version floating around on youtube where they cut out alot of it, its pretty clever and doesnt get too dull, but live I was expecting someone else to be the mystery person that was going to come out.

    Jericho pretty much hit every rockstar and 80s wrestling cliche in his return. I hope his new character is not supposed to be some over the top nut and that this ties in with the “control” aspect of the videos since he was showing how to control an audience. I think Vince is right that this could tie into Stephanie. Coming back to claim what is rightfully theirs might be McMahon taking the company back. They dropped the HHH stuff because he stunk in it and was totally unbelievable so maybe she comes back.

    When the WWE did their version of the NWO that was kind of the deal then as well. McMahon hated the idea that he no longer had control of his shows so he brought in the NWO to destroy it. That went nowhere because the crowds turned Hogan face in about 2 weeks and the NWO then became a storyline about whether HHH would or would not join up.

  6. Avatar Vince G
    Vince G says:

    This whole thing really sums WWE right now and the battle the seems to be going on backstage. WWE keeps trying to be ‘down with the kids’ but they are aways late. In the past when WWE realised something was popular they would integrate it into the product and it worked. The problem is things move so fast now they can’t catch up and they over do it to a degree where it seems really desperate and needy instead of cutting edge.

    Y2J has already done the big entrance with some sort of ‘current’ aspect to it. But doing that a third time in itself is boring. Viral isn’t new, video packages aren’t new and Twitter isn’t new so trying to make lightning strike yet again is lazy. The new bit is silence and that isn’t new either. If you can’t do something with originality just make it good. Faith in WWE doing something good is at an all time low for me personally.

    • Avatar BigErn
      BigErn says:

      I like your points, Jason and Vince. I would put particular emphasis on the “down with the kids but are always late” comment from Vince. Their writing team has been really dated as of late and (sadly and unfortunately), the real head guy seems to be a frustrated old guy well into his 60s who seems to think of WWE as his playground to vent his potty humor and stick it to guys like JR (guess I should not use the word bully) and other personal grudges/interests.

      Seriously, when was the last time that you watched a good TV program that put that Twitter crap up? Imagine watching the Walking Dead to only be interrupted by “Lauren Holly’s butt is trending” … OK bad example. However, WWE does not seem like a serious business by pimping Twitter.

      I can appreciate Vince’s points on Jericho video packages but again, I remember each Jericho debut to a tee (Rock confrontation, Age of Orton, then the Kaufman/shitfaced grin treatment). I did not find his last act boring in the least. The Bockwinkel/Anton Chigurh act was good in my books and a nice break from his ayatollah of rocknrolla act and made for some neat memories allowing Jericho to go in a different direction.

      His feud with HBK and run with Big Slow were very memorable for me. Gee, I can recall all three of Jericho’s debuts and highlights from Bragging Rights 2009, the insanely expensive Jeritron 2000, and countless other Jerichimemories but be damned if I can remember Raw last week.

      Welcome back Jericho, with open arms ;)

      • Avatar Vince G
        Vince G says:

        My problem isn’t so much that Jericho is boring so much as the rest of the product is and when you have someone as talented as Jericho you should use him. I complain as much as anyone that WWE doesn’t take their time and build things properly anymore but there are times when something needs to happen. The last two years have been all about the ‘Mania build and the rest of the year (particularly 2011) has just been treading water. Even the ‘Mania build the last two years have a habit of going on cruise control far too early.

        If I thought Jericho would be back full time for the next year or so I would give this more of a chance and be patient but if he is only here untill ‘Mania or just beyond that then he should do more than nothing. I’m suprised they didn’t give him a 2012 end of the world countdown gimmick but maybe they will save that for someone like Brodus Clay.

        • Avatar Jason
          Jason says:

          Agreed Vince. The whole product is pretty dull. I barely even watch now, though with the NFL season over and the Rumble on the way Ill watch more often. The show is just too much of the same every week. Considering ratings are pretty much bottomed out how much worse could they do by cutting back on featuring everyone on the roster every week and instead just focusing on a few guys and doing better matches? I would think that builds everyone up better.

          You are correct on the Mania build and I was thinking of that the other day. I mentioned it here a few weeks ago about how I hoped Austin would win the Rumble as a surprise and challenge Punk to which Brady correctly responded that its a waste because Austin would be buried on the card, but look at the way they have this booked. Rocks first singles match in what 7 years? HHHs 4th or 5th match in over a year? Undertakers first match in a year. HBK back in the ring as a ref for the first time in 2 years. Jericho back for the first time in 2 years? When does it end and how can they top it?

          Next year is going to be the return of Lesnar. Maybe Austin does something. Hogan is done. I guess Mania XXX will be sold on the number alone. Maybe that is what officially ends the cycle, but they are so reliant on the older stars to save the buys, but there are no older stars left to fall back on and no new stars made to keep things interesting.

          • Avatar Vince G
            Vince G says:

            Ultimately nothing will change untill the two biggest problems are dealt with.

            1) How can we use Cena to improve the entire product long term?
            2) How do we use SD and the roster we have over two shows?

            They may be addressing them now a bit but they have dug a pretty big hole and are dealing with it half-heartedly which seems to be the MO these days. It’s also hard to see just what impact the network will have since that is the biggest question mark hanging over WWE right now.

            I agree RAW is a hard watch especially 3 hours specials. Too many of the things that were wrong with Nitro/Impact and anything Russo has been involved can be seen. I wouldn’t be suprised if one day each weeks episode is named or given some one line title.

          • Avatar BigErn
            BigErn says:

            For some reason I cannot reply to Vince’s post so I am replying to Jason’s post above it.

            If I had to narrow down the problems with WWE into two problems myself (my wishlist to fix) it would be:

            1. They need to build new stars rather than the perennial, go to guys (Cenanuff, Orton, Underseller, Triple HGH). This is why their roster appears thin yet has loads of talent. They are working on this (again) but always seem to stop short (see Miz, Nexus, Punk if they went the right direction in July 2011). Most of their main draws (as WWE sees it) are in the twilight or beyond that phase of their career.

            2. They need to respect their audience and complete storylines (rather than saying that the writing simply sucks). Whatever happened to the anonymous Raw GM? Where is Brodus Clay? What has happened to compelling, better drawn out storylines?

            These are two biggies but in my opinion, if I can narrow down the two largest problems then these are my picks. Fixing these problems won’t fix everything but it would be a damn good start.

        • Avatar BigErn
          BigErn says:

          I can quickly chime in. Jericho will likely (although I hope that he won’t) speak on Raw this upcoming Monday. I hope that they do the silent and ambiguous treatment for a week or two until (as we all know) Jericho will show his true heel colors. It is totally like Jericho (or Chris Irvine) to play a game like this one.

          As far as the same stars I have to admit that I like what they are doing with Barrett (again) who could have been a top guy off his feud with Cenanuff a year ago. Punk could be so much more (don’t get me started) since the end of July last year and the Miz could also be a solid top guy right now. I am for mixing the top guys (Cenanuff, Orton, Punk right now) with whoever they plan to build up for main event/top tier.

          I would have Miz feud with Orton after Orton’s return (Miz jumping to Smackdown), Cenanuff in a solid feud with Ziggles (for example) after Kane, and give Barrett the Smackdown title now as they seem to be wasting it on Bryan. Just food for thought …

  7. Avatar dividebyzero
    dividebyzero says:

    I like what they did with Jericho. I hope he continues to play the bit like we love him and are happy he came back only to not give us what we want, which is classic mic work and 5-star matches. Innovative way to get him heat for the lead up to Wrestlemania vs. Punk. He has to do something to make him the bad guy as everyone would like him as a cool heel.

  8. Avatar Mike
    Mike says:

    “great insight from…Mike Bessler” sounds extremely sarcastic.