I went a different route with this one, I really hope it doesn't fuck me over. Personally I think it's... very... persuasive.
Is making the Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal an annual event at Wrestlemania a good move?
Is an over-the-top-rope battle royal at the grandest stage of them all
a good idea? Absolutely
But with the ultimate prize being a… statue? Uhh… I think the problem lies in that.
If we just look at it on paper, an annual multi-man battle royal at WrestleMania is in no way a bad thing; it gets a lot of talent on the card, allows for continuations and creations of storylines and/or feuds, and most importantly, if given enough time, can really let the aforementioned talent shine.
But the problem? The reward being a large prop statue. Don’t get me wrong, I love Andre the Giant, and everyone who considers them a wrestling fan should too. He was, and will be remembered as, a pioneer, not just for wrestling, but especially wrestling entertainment. Andre the Giant certainly deserves something to celebrate his legacy, but I think this is the wrong way to do it.
There is already a well-established and extremely popular battle royal that leads
to WrestleMania, and we call this the Royal Rumble, and we have for over a quarter of a century. The Royal Rumble has a much better prize, much better moments, and is often considered to be the absolute most popular stipulation match in wrestling today. This thirty-or-forty-man over-the-top-rope battle royal has one of the most lucrative non-championship rewards – a main event opportunity at WrestleMania for
a championship – but does a giant statue of a giant compare? Why make a worse, virtually completely
unimportant version? I can’t honestly say it does, and I can’t honestly see why.
As hurtful as that may be to Andre the Giant super-fans, it’s just a horrible idea. Who would want to fight twenty-nine other men for a statue over a championship, kayfabe speaking? And who would want to fight twenty-nine other men for a statue over a championship, five years after the original, where five other guys have already won it?
Though, like I said, if we go back to the basics - an annual multi-man battle royal at WrestleMania – is a fantastic idea, realistically (not in kayfabe). Thirty men who are otherwise unable to make it to the card get to be on it. Thirty men get their shot to show their ability at WrestleMania. Thirty men can wow one of the largest multinational sporting audiences in the world. Should the prize matter?
Not to mention, uninteresting gimmick matches like this, especially battle royals not named the Royal Rumble, lose their touch after a few uses, and no fan is going to look forward to the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal, wondering if his or her favourite superstar is going to win it. They’d be more likely to skip through the first, depressingly slow half, full of eliminations of jobbers left right and centre, if not just skip all of it.
In kayfabe terms, it’s kind of questionable. Who would want a memorial statue if it’s not one of a kind? Who would want to devote their time to something that isn’t a championship?
On the other hand, a non-kayfabe hand, it gets thirty men who wouldn’t have a chance to be on the grandest stage of them all, to actually be on that grand stage.
Unfortunately and realistically, the negatives outweigh the positives quite substantially with the concept of an Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal.
The reward –
Compared to the aforementioned Royal Rumble, the most adored annual stipulation match in the history of wrestling, the prize for winning is nothing important in both kayfabe and shoot. There’s no attached championship. There’s not even an attached championship match or opportunity. There’s no contract for a match in the future. There’s nothing but a massive plastic fucking prop statue.
The statue –
It’s a PLASTIC PROP STATUE.
And most amazingly, the length -
The match lasted thirteen minutes, twenty-five seconds. 13:25. That is disgraceful!
Everything I mentioned about thirty superstars getting a chance to shine at WrestleMania is just completely irrelevant when thirty superstars are crammed into an abysmally low thirteen minutes and twenty-five seconds
. Fourteen of the participants were eliminated in the first five minutes. Count that. Fourteen. Almost half of the damn wrestlers in the match.
Apart from the inevitable victor, who is going to show off their skills? Who is going to break the proverbial glass ceiling? Who would grab that, also proverbial, brass ring?
The answer is no-one. No-one can break out when crowded by 29 other people in 30 minutes, unless they win it.
Basically, making this event annual would be a pointless waste. Waste of time, waste of talent, and even a waste of plastic.