Greetings all to another article by yours truly, RadicalRhys. Now, it seems the job hunt isn’t going so well since no one is willing to take me on and I’ve hardly been doing anything worth mentioning over the past few weeks, so I have to do something with my life otherwise I’ma end up going potty. So, I may as well try something different and create this new segment that I’d like to call ‘Radical Round-Up’. This will basically look at particular topics that have caught my interest or maybe the interest of people around the country/UK/world and just put some opinion-al input, ’cause you know I can totally make up words like that to bring my point across. And, no, this will be different to me thinking that my opinion is perfectly right, or that I’m going to complain about everything, just like I mentioned in my last Radical Rant. This is just the thought-out opinions of one guy looking to provide some new content for people in the Wicid World, cause Lord knows I need more stuff to read.
So anyway, my first article will be about about one of the more recent trends to come out of one large circle of viewers in the world, and that is from the Professional Wrestling side of things, or Sports Entertainment (however you look at it in this discussion). It has been well over a week now since the climax of one of the biggest events in all of sports entertainment, that being WWE WrestleMania 29. The actual event, while I haven’t watched it myself, didn’t exactly seem to hold up to the level of past WrestleMania’s like most of the 28 others have held in the past. However, we are not talking about this but rather we are talking about what most call to be the real WrestleMania of 2013 and that was actually the post-edition of WWE Monday Night Raw the following night.
The reason behind this, however, isn’t centered around the actual WWE talents showcased on this 3-hour edition of the show (for the most part anyway) or the events that followed in the show. Nope, it was actually the live crowd members from the IZOD Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey, right in the US of A. Now, I expected a rowdy crowd going into that show as you’d expect the more hardcore of wrestling fans appearing in these post-WrestleMania Raw shows since they are usually held in the same area as the prior WrestleMania event was held in (same place just in the MetLife Stadium in case you were wondering). However, what I didn’t expect was to hear so much praise from this rowdy bunch, where even the official WWE.com website featured an article saying how this crowd could be one of the greatest crowds in the history of the company.
For the record, I haven’t been watching Raw ever since it became 3 hours long. I ain’t got no time to watch 3 hours (sometimes with 20 over-runs) of anything. But after hearing so much about how this crowd was amazing, which kept making me roll my eyes by how easily hyped these IWC fans tend to be (that’s ‘Internet Wrestling Community’ for those who don’t know). But of course after hearing some of the live videos of some of the things this crowd was doing at the show and after the show while they were all going home and on a few train journeys home as well, they made me swallow my initial dread of watching 3 hours of anything and made me watch the full show. After watching it, well, I can see why it was so easily hyped up.
This wasn’t your typical WWE wrestling taping crowd with mostly young children and unbearably loud women, this was in all honesty more of a ‘football crowd’ than a wrestling crowd. So many random chants being thrown around, particularly during the Randy Orton VS Sheamus match, I almost feel bad for both of them if it weren’t for the fact the crowd was absolutely right with some of their chants, such as, ‘Boring’ and a ‘Thank You Big Show’ chant when the athlete who goes by that ring name knocked the two out during their segment. But they also threw in random chants for the ring-side commentators such as about the rumoured return of a superstar who’s in talks with WWE, superstars who sadly aren’t with us anymore, and many more chants that’d take too much time to mention.
However, the reaction that stood out to me from this hyped up crowd are the following. I won’t get into much details with them but this one guy, Dolph Ziggler, has this chance to win the World Heavyweight Championship at any time, any place, in a match against the champion at that time, and I say anytime because it just so happens after a match between superstars Jack Swagger and Alberto Del Rio (Del Rio being the World Champion). Well they had a match, and after the match Del Rio had his knee all hurt in the ring, when of all people to appear next, Dolph Ziggler appears along with his buddies, AJ Lee and Big E Langston, to some sort of noise that appeared to have busted out my eardrums. I had to go to the doctors shortly after to check if everything was okay. And it was even louder after he cashed in his automatic title match contract and won the World Heavyweight Championship. Now if you don’t follow the product of WWE television, the character Dolph Ziggler is portrayed as one of the bad guys who you should really be booing and hussing at, but does everyone in the world think this way? Not this crowd. I mean if this was your first experience watching WWE TV, you’d think Dolph Ziggler was one of the most-loved people in the company.
There was second reaction that definitely stood out more than anything with the knock on effect it has received in the world, and not just the wrestling world, but the actual world in general. I am of course referring to the chant that is sweeping the world all thanks to the greatest that is Fandango, no sorryâ€¦ FAAAAAN-DAAAAAN-GOOOOOO! But that’s not the chant either, so I’ll explain quickly. Fandango, formerly known as Johnny Curtis, is this ballroom-dancer-like character who tends not to participate in wrestling matches unless people get his name correctly announced, which in most cases to him, it never is. This led to him having a short program with another WWE wrestler, Chris Jericho, and led into his WrestleMania debut match as this new character, which he in fact won. Now I’d say this man unintentionally created what I predict may be not just a wrestling meme, but a meme for the world in general as the live crowd in New Jersey started chanting/singing along to the man’s theme music, ‘ChaChaLaLa’ by Jim Johnston. This is the chant that lead all the way out into the trains that I mentioned (those poor people who had no idea what was going on).
How does this have a knock on effect you ask? Why predict so much from one stupid wrestling chant? No one cares for wrestling. It’s all fake anyw- No, you stahp it, you silly! There’s genuine proof behind this as the theme song became so popular in less than a week, that it at one point reached number 11 in the UK iTunes chart, underneath the Taylor Swift song ‘22’. It also reached number 3 on the Top Soundtracks Chart in America. For a simple wrestling meme to go that far more or less overnight? Also in this short period of time there have been numerous parody videos of groups of people doing what they call, #FANDANGOING to this very tune (personally I’d call it the ChaChaLaLa as it sounds catchier and makes more sense, but whatever, people be stupid). All of this may also link to our grand country as most of these chants were created by large groups of UK fans who went over to the states for the WrestleMania weekend and happened to stick around for that very Raw show. Maybe we are partially responsible for starting this new craze that could very well take over the world (not sure whether that’s a good or bad thing in the long run actually).
I’ve done enough explaining of what has happened lately and I really need to close this article up soon, so I’ll just make some predictions on what is going to happen to the wrestling world, or more specifically WWE in general, after this iconic episode of Monday Night Raw. I’m going to say it right now: hardly anything. Maybe we’ve got a new chant that will feature in TV shows where Fandango’s on, and maybe some that he doesn’t appear in either. However, even with how catchy and creative this tune is, I believe in terms of wrestling as a whole, it could actually hurt it more than anything. We see so many chants like the oh so dreaded ‘What?’ chant and the more likeable ‘Yes!’ ‘No!’ chants (which were created by a similar crowd at last year’s Post-Wrestlemania Raw funnily enough) which take away so much from the actual matches and segments of WWE programming. I mean sure, it’d be cool to do what everyone is doing as the world loves to do (Harlem Shake is a prime example of thisâ€¦) but when you want to attend or watch these shows to see entertaining television or well-crafted in-ring matches, they can very well be ruined by chants such as the ChaChaLaLa like it did with Randy Orton & Sheamus from that episode, and like it will most likely do in future WWE episodes of anything they make. However, my bigger concern is this chant breaking into promotion that has no ties with WWE what-so-ever. Like, I tend to watch TNA Impact Wrestling (a separate product to WWE) and I heard these same chants appearing on their shows and I’m thinking, ‘Why do this? Stone Cold or Daniel Bryan were never apart of your company, why do WWE themed chants? Do chants that link with you product at least,’’ but there we go, most wrestling fans are dumb like that, or at least most TNA fans are anyway. Oh no don’t yell at me through the internet, I can’t take all the caps lock rage. (For the record I watch and like TNA in case people take that the wrong way.)
What will also wind me up again are these IWC people who liked this show so much because of this one crowd. Here’s a bit of hard truth for everyone, I can guarantee you that 9.999999999 times out of 10, we will never get a weekly crowd like this on WWE programming, or maybe you’ll get them every so often like on a post-WrestleMania show or something similar like a UK based show (we are a crazy bunch after all). I mean, sure, they’ll attempt to do the Fandango chant, but they’ll fail much like the following edition of Friday Night SmackDown apparently did from Boston, Massachusetts. And then people will complain about how the crowd weren’t as good since it’ll still be filled with women and little kids. That’s to be expected, that’s what WWE targets their product on these days, that’s no secret, it hasn’t been for like 6/7 years now, maybe longer. I mean they won’t change their entire view on their company and their image from one energetic crowd such as that crowd was, nor will they, if they manage to get similar crowds to this from this point forward. At least I highly doubt that’ll happen anyway.
Okay. I made my opinions felt, so now to round-up. I like the ChaChaLaLa (not #Fandangoing), I like that this crowd was energetic in the way they were, I wish more wrestling crowds were like them in general, and I like how the actual song is making its mark on the world. But this could very well turn out for the worst in terms of professional wrestling as a whole, at least in the USA and UK. Well, I’m really sorry for rambling on but this is a first for me and I hope to do more topics in the near future. If there’s anything you want me to talk about, then leave a comment in this article or something, and I’ll do my best to let this happen for you all. Thanks a bunch guys, time for me to make my exit.
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