WWE Royal Rumble KO's Minds, Fans Revolt

Tonight I am going to delve into a subject I've never really discussed here before. I've tackled current events, pop culture, sports, and writing over my years on this blog. Tonight, I go forth and discuss the hot topic that's burrowing in everyone's mind: The 2015 WWE Royal Rumble.

*Warning: The following is a 36 year old man's take on a scripted show in which grown men (and women) wrestle for entertainment. Judge away.

I'm not here to dissect all of the matches of this Pay-Per-View event. I'm here to look at the Royal Rumble match itself and the fallout from the result.

At this point, wrestling fans are well aware that Roman Reigns won the Royal Rumble. This victory has guaranteed Reigns a shot at the title at Wrestlemania 31 against Brock Lesnar.

Reigns has been a fan favorite up until recently. Fans still like him, but their enjoyment has waned in recent months. As the WWE is sports entertainment, character development and charisma on the mic are very valuable in the WWE. In some fans eyes, this is where Reigns has displayed recent shortcomings.

Daniel Bryan is loved by many of the WWE fans. He is the creator of the "Yes" Movement and fans chant emphatically behind all of his appearances. Bryan was one of the favorites to win the Rumble before the event started.

If you are not a wrestling fan and still reading this, I applaud you.

The Royal Rumble took place in Philadelphia this year. That's very important because fans at live events in this city can be very unforgiving, especially for their own teams.

Daniel Bryan was the tenth wrestler (out of 30, for the not-so-inclined). Even if he did not win, fans believed they were in for a long night of their favorite wrestler battling in the ring. They were not. He put in some solid time in the ring, but was eliminated before the 16th wrestler even entered.

The fans revolted, proceeding to boo for what remained of the entirety of that match. They chanted "Yes", the booed, the chanted for CM Punk, who has been gone from the company for a year. They were not happy. Even when Reigns, a supposed good guy, won, the crowd only gave a brief applause followed by louder boos.

Fans cancelled their WWE Network subscription ($9.99 a month). Fans took to Twitter and the internet to express their outrage. They were having none of it. Their favorite wrestler did not win or did not make it far in the event. They were mad. Why? All because the television show they like simply didn't go the way they wanted.

I get it. I do. Let me pose this to you: When you go to a sporting event to root for your favorite team, do you disavow allegiance to them and stop following them/watching their games? Okay, yes, but that only usually last for a few days. Then you're right back to rooting for them.

I understand people pay for a subscription to this network so they feel they have entitlement to get what they want. To an extent, they are correct in their thinking. There should be able to get what they desire once in awhile. They got that last year, when Bryan finally won the championship. Of course, they brought the fans along for the ride, keeping them interested until the cash cow that is Wrestlemania.

As consumers, these fans have the right to come and go as they please. Here's one thing to remember, though: It's sports entertainment. It's a scripted show. Without surprises in story lines and matches, what would keep the majority of people coming back for more? Yes, disappointment will happen, but when hasn't that happened in a t.v show? A character you love dies, a character you love isn't shown on an episode, a character you love makes bad choices but totally redeems himself later and you still return to see what happens next.

If a company gives the majority of fans what they want every single time, that's not interesting.  It's not compelling and after awhile, the product becomes bland and more people tune out.

Chances are, the entire Royal Rumble is in the early part of a larger story line. It's a long road to the grand daddy of them all, Wrestlemania, and we all know stories change and grow during the build up.

I was disappointed that Bryan didn't last longer. His elimination caught me off guard, yes, but to me that just makes me yearn to see what they have in store for him. Maybe it will fail and they'll take us down a road no one wants to see at the moment. (i.e. Kane). Let's hope not, but as of now, all opportunities are on the table.

Bryan losing so early did not ruin my experience. As a fan, I understand that there were 30 men in this event. Only one can win. It just so happens the most deserving character may have lost. Fans, you know this, but it's not reason to cry. I understand a young kid crying when his favorite wrestler is facing overwhelming odds, but he's a kid. He's young enough to still believe in the magic and fantasy of it all.

It's not, though. It's not real life. It's a television show with athletes doubling as actors with a creative team scripting story lines. It's a television show that can be entertaining, drab, dull, crazy, and funny all in the same night. Get over it. Watch it or not but just remember these athletes are out their working for your entertainment. In the end, the main event may have let you down, but that title match was worth it, wasn't it?

If you ask me, we need more of Dean Ambrose anyway.

And Mr. Reigns, don't worry about those booing fans in Philadelphia. They once booed Santa Claus. If I must say, that puts you in pretty decent company.


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