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Re: **The Official Raw Ratings Thread** (Discuss Ratings In Here)
A fleeting thought I should probably develop further before posting it: I wonder how much the viewers' disconnect is related to the disconnect between the champion and the rest of the roster? I feel like we've got maybe the most humanised WWE champion in a long, long time - a fairly regular-lookin' guy, for a WWE champ, with a grounded character akin to your Stone Colds and so forth, but nowhere near as mythologised a figure as the stars of the past. A product of a star-making promo that was supposed to kickstart a "reality era", a reign that was supposed to bring about sweeping changes that brought the outdated, stale WWE more in line with Punk's vision of a modern wrestling company.
And then, you put him in a program with The Terminator.
Or in a "hilarious" love triangle with a crazy skipping chick and a goat-faced maniac.
Or on a goofy "quest for respect" that insults the intelligence of everyone watching. "Just because you're the champion doesn't mean you're entitled to respect. Also, tune in to Night of Champions this Sunday." ACTUAL MICHAEL COLE QUOTE
And he's on a roster full of either weird, outsized caricatures like Cena and Sheamus, or underdeveloped blanks that could be something much more, like Barrett and Del Rio.
How much of WWE's problem is that there's too much really, really great TV available right now for it to be so confused about its own tone? Maybe they need to just decide that either we're going with cartoon characters like Ryback (who's getting over with the fans in a huge way right now) or more relatable characters like Punk (who gave the industry its most exciting moment in years) and stick with it, because putting the two types in a program together just seems to suck the air out of everyone's sails, including the audience. Maybe Punk's a really great NWA champ stuck in a Hulk Hogan world?
(Actually, running with that thought, is there so much great TV right now that, even if WWE was a really well-written, focused, cohesive wrestling show, a well-written wrestling show isn't good enough to get the very far above 4 million viewers anymore outside of nostalgia pops and such?)