Monday January 4th, 2010 may not have the same meaning to WWE President Vince McMahon as it does for TNA President Dixie Carter, but it will be a meaningful night for many wrestling fans.
McMahon’s Monday Night Raw has been a rip off of Saturday Night Live and the actual in-ring product is at an all time low. Come to think of it, Raw hasn’t even been as good as MAD TV. That’s saying something.
I wondered what the new era in wrestling would be in the new millennium. I know now. It’s the era of entertainment, as in World Wrestling Entertainment with a capital ‘E”. Out the window are the compelling story lines, the classic, memorable matches from years gone by, no wrestling fans, we are immersed in the era of more flash than substance.
Raw will be interesting because for the first time in 12 years, Bret Hart will return to the WWE. How crazy is that? Hart, who’s brother Owen died tragically in Kansas City falling to his death Mary 23, 1999, signed a short term contract with McMahon.
The same McMahon that changed the way people watched pro wrestling with the infamous “Montreal screw job” in which Shawn Michaels won the WWF championship over Hart. McMahon, Michaels, referee Earl Hebner and maybe a few others in the company knew that Hart was going to drop the belt; however, Bret didn’t know.
Sometimes I think that we all were worked on that whole Bret Hart/Vince McMahon feud.
Is Bret’s return interesting? Sure it is. Will there be a confrontation between Vince and Bret or Michaels and Bret? Who knows? All I know is Raw has been in need of something compelling for quite sometime.
If nothing else, McMahon is arrogant but savvy. He put Bret on this show because he felt that this could throw cold water on TNA’s Monday night plans. Raw has been averaging 3.4, 3.5, 3.6 and this Monday could be the same number. Even though Bret is on the show, the WWE still has Shamus as their Raw brand champion. That will make the most ardent wrestling fan turn the channel. They also have Shawn Michaels and Triple H on the show to take up 25 minutes of the show- 20 minutes of it talking of course.
I haven’t watched a live edition of Raw since last June. My remote is usually in fast-forward mode to get past the bad Ladies matches and long interview segments. The only show that I usually watch live is Smackdown and that’s because they give their wrestlers/entertainers a chance to perform and they have fewer skits.
Hart is one of my favorite wrestlers because of his wrestling prowess and his character as a Canadian tough guy.
I don’t expect to see the dynamic Bret that we saw in the WWF. As a matter of fact, he wasn’t the same personality that we saw after his brother was killed.
I look forward to seeing one of the all-time greats on Raw but it’s going to have to be on the DVR. I can’t risk the chance of seeing Chavo vs. Hornswaggle for the 40th time.