WWE’s most recent, and one of its newest pay-per-view ideas, Payback has come and gone and we’re now looking forward to Money In The Bank next month. Payback debuted as a pay-per-view in 2013 and it still has yet to be seen whether the idea for this new event will stick in the minds of WWE fans or if it is just another pay-per-view that will fade away. WWE’s next pay per view, Money In The Bank, has been around for 3 years (4 after June 29th) and is another gimmick event in a long list of gimmick events that WWE has come up with over the years.
Besides the big 4 WWE pay -per-views (Royal Rumble, WrestleMania. SummerSlam, and Survivor Series) WWE must continue to fill the calendar year with pay-per-view events. Some have been around for a while, some for a couple of years, and of course from time to time WWE will announce a new pay-per-view. At the same time, fans have seen that the WWE is not immune to bad ideas in terms of pay-per-view events. Here are 10 of WWE’s worst pay-per-view ideas.
10. Global Warming
The idea for the name of this pay-per-view was all wrong. Yes, this particular pay-per-view was held in August (of 2002) in Australia where it can get very, very hot but Global Warming? Using the increase of the Earth’s temperature that has harmful effects on everything that inhabits this planet to name a sports entertainment pay-per-view event was pushing it a bit too much. But Global Warming was the name WWE decided to go with for its Australian only pay-per-view that would later be released on DVD in the US. The pay-per-view itself wasn’t all that bad, but a better name could have been chosen by WWE as it tried to expand its horizon past the US.
9. Removing Backlash As The Follow-Up To WrestleMania
Hard to say how many will agree with this but Backlash should still be running as the pay-per-view after WrestleMania. For 10 years since debuting as a part of the In Your House pay-per-view series in 1999, Backlash had been identified as the next event after WrestleMania. It also had the perfect name to fit being the next pay-per-view after the biggest event that WWE has to offer. Backlash always had great matches to offer from the WWE Champion Stone Cold Vs The Rock in a No Holds Barred Match in 1999 to Randy Orton and Cactus Jack‘s brutal encounter in a Hardcore Match for the Intercontinental Title in 2004 to Edge reigning supreme over John Cena in a Last Man Standing Match for the World Heavyweight title in the last ever match at Backlash in 2009. Those matches, just as many other matches contested at Backlash, stemmed from a match or encounter that took place at WrestleMania.
Extreme Rules replaced Backlash in 2010 as the pay-per-view that follows WrestleMania but it hasn’t had the same appeal to viewers.
8. Taking Money In The Bank Matches Away From WrestleMania
The idea for the Money In The Bank ladder match was 1st introduced in 2005 and the first had Edge vs Chris Benoit vs Christian vs Kane vs Shelton Benjamin with Edge becoming the first ever Mr. Money In the Bank. This trend of MITB ladder matches at WrestleMania would continue for 5 years after, adding to the excitement of the spectacle that is WrestleMania. The MITB Matches also provided a critical element: mid-carders getting the big time exposure that they otherwise wouldn’t receive, especially at WrestleMania. Superstars such as the aforementioned Benjamin, Carlito, MVP, Drew McIntyre, Mr Kennedy, Dolph Ziggler and Jack Swagger were all given the opportunity to shine at WrestleMania thanks to the MITB Ladder Match where they could ultimately be pushed to the top level with a good showing.
Taking the Money In The Bank match away from WrestleMania was a double loss. It removed an exciting match from the WM card and it was a way for WWE to create another themed pay-per-view, which was already a bad idea to begin with. MITB officially became its own event in 2010 and has been running since. But honestly speaking, the only match to look forward to is the actual Ladder Match. It’s a waste of a pay-per-view and a match that could be on a bigger pay-per-view for more to see.
7. Bragging Rights
Call it WWE’s B-version of Survivor Series. Bragging Rights pay-per-view debuted in 2009 as an inter-brand event pitting RAW vs SmackDown for brand supremacy and a shiny trophy. Yawn. Bragging Rights used a similar format as Survivor Series but instead used a 14 man Tag Team Elimination Match to decide which was the better brand. It would have been better to see WWE use these Inter-Brand matches at Survivor Series and bring one of WWE’s A pay-per -views back to what it used to be, instead of feeling the need to create some boring ideas like this one. Add that to the fact that having a 7-vs-7 superstar match tends to have some wrestlers get lost in the shuffle to the point where you ask yourself after the match, “He was in that match?” The best thing to have come out of either Bragging Rights pay-per-view was the 60-Minute Iron Man Match between John Cena and Randy Orton in 2009. Two years later, Bragging Rights ceased to exist.
6. Breaking Point/Letting Fans Vote On The Name
There are two types of fans in every sport, the smart ones and the not-so-smart ones. And it’s usually in situations such as this one where the 2nd type of fan takes over. In 2009, fans voted on the name Breaking Point as the pay-per-view to be held on September 13th in Montreal, Quebec. The idea for this pay-per-view was to have the main event contested under Submission Rules. Breaking Point wasn’t the best name but when the other choices were Submission Sunday, Submit To Quit, and Total Submission, it sufficed. Probably even worse then those names was the fact that the main event between CM Punk and The Undertaker going for only 9 minutes thanks to a screw-job that mimicked the Hart/Michaels/McMahon fiasco of 1997. It was just a bad idea and a bad pay-per-view. Breaking Point, along with fans voting on a pay-per-view name, was a 1-hit wonder.
5. Fatal 4-Way
Just an overall terrible idea for a themed pay-per-view. The first and only Fatal 4-Way was held in June 2010 and featured mainly Fatal Four Way matches.This themed pay-per-view did not work as it seemed the matches did not build off of storylines leading up to the event but were forced to accommodate the theme. Although a new champion was crowned in each of the 4 title matches that occurred, the event didn’t go over well with the fans and only occurred once.
4. WWE’s Brand Of ECW Pay-Per-Views
Fans of the original, independent brand of Extreme Championship Wrestling had to have been nothing less than POed with WWE’s attempt to push ECW as a brand of its own. One Night Stand debuted as a pay-per-view in 2005 and ran for 4 years. But with a name like that, wouldn’t it have made sense to make it a 1-time only event? The first event was actually quite good and was held at an old ECW venue. Sadly, the WWE chose to ride this event until it eventually died in 2006.
Then came December To Dismember. It’s safe to say this pay-per-view underwhelmed (if it had any real expectations). Besides the first and last matches, this pay-per-view stunk. It only used ECW brand superstars and none from RAW and Smackdown which limited the star power and flexibility of what could be done at the pay-per-view. There was only one WWE/ECW brand of December To Dismember. It’s easy to see why.
3. The Great American Bash (2004)
The fact that The Great American Bash lasted only 3 years before being renamed The Bash before ceasing to exist is one thing. But the idea for WWE to introduce this pay-per-view in 2004 with one of the worst match cards in history is another. Three of the matches featured were Kenzo Suzuki (who?) vs Billy Gunn, Mordecai vs Hardcore Holly, and Luther Reigns vs Charlie Haas. Need I say more? And the main even was a Handicap Match between The Undertaker and The Dudley Boyz in a Concrete Crypt Match. No pay-per-view deserves a card like this one, no customer deserves to pay for something like this.
2. Tuesday Pay-Per-Views
WWE Pay Per Views, like Sunday Football, belong on Sunday nights. As a company continues to expand, it is understandable for it to tinker with new ideas to raise viewership and revenue but pay=per-views on Tuesday nights were a very bad idea. The first pay per view held on a Tuesday can be traced all the way back to 1991. “This Tuesday In Texas” would be the WWE’s 1st attempt in seeing how well a Tuesday pay-per-view would go over with the fans. From the name to just the overall idea of this pay-per-view, it is easy to see why there was only one. The event had a total of 10 matches for a grand total of 1 hour. Why? Because five of the matches were dark matches that happened before the event started. A One hour hour pay per view on Tuesday? Not your best idea Mr. McMahon.
Now we all know that WWE is scripted. So with the idea of Taboo Tuesday and letting the fans pick and choose matches, how long could this possibly last? It took two years after being introduced as a pay-per-view in 2004 for Taboo Tuesday to be scratched. Most likely because a majority of the matches that the fans picked went against the script and WWE couldn’t afford to stray to much away from it. Oh and the fact that it was held on a Tuesday, which again should be a no-no for pay per views. No more pay-per-views on Tuesdays! Thanks!
1. Getting Rid Of The King Of The Ring Pay-Per-View
King Of The Ring is by far the best themed pay-per-view that is no longer running. In fact, it was one of the best pay-per-views WWE had. The KOTR pay=per-view was first introduced in 1993 although the actual tournament had been around since 1985. The KOTR placed 16 superstars (except 2000; 32 superstars) in 1-on-1 single elimination matches with the winner advancing to the next round. The final 2 participants would compete for the right to be named The King Of The Ring. As a pay-per-view this tournament produced winners such as Bret Hart (the first winner on pay-per-view), Stone Cold Steve Austin, Triple H, Kurt Angle and Edge. This tournament was seen as a stepping-stone for younger superstars to main event status and having it as a pay-per-view only enhanced the winner’s eventual rise. Who could forget Stone Cold’s legendary speech at the end of the 1996 KOTR, where he first used, “Austin 3:16?” We know where his career went from there, as well as the careers of others who reigned supreme at this pay-per-view.
The King Of The Ring ran as a pay-per-view until 2002, went on a 4-year hiatus, and eventually returned in 2006. But it just wasn’t the same. The tournament would now be held on the weekly episodes of RAW and SmackDown and the finals matches held on RAW (except the 2006 final; held at Judgement Day). By now the KOTR tournament had lost its luster. The only exciting thing to come out of it in its latter years was Booker T‘s “King Booker” gimmick which he nailed in every way. It’s sad that they ruined such a great and historic ideas.