And, to clarify-by big, in this instance, we do not mean it’s popularity. No, we are more thinking about it’s number of matches and the fact that it’s going to start broadcasting at a “special” 7PM start time, and if the recent past is any indication, we might still be going till nearly Midnight. So, some of this question does require some supposition…but is WrestleMania that is on-air for five hours, and has say, thirteen matches…too big?
Yes and no, I think. I am all about driving you nuts and being at least a little indecisive.
Why yes? Because it’s asking a lot to sit down and watch something for five hours straight. Just because they do it for Super Bowls, does not mean it always works. I get it, it’s another one of those “single day events”, just like the Super Bowl. But that event, the Super Bowl, is on a whole different plane of existence. So, I think five hours might just be getting a bit too big for things. I get it, some of that is pre-show…but when you announce matches (three at last count) on the main shows, and slide them to your pre-show, well….they count.
Why no? Because it is WrestleMania. Forget about this year’s tag line. It’s the Showcase of the Immortals. It IS the WWE’s version of the Super Bowl, and it does well internationally just like, well…the Super Bowl. So if you have enough quality content to put on thirteen or fourteen or fifteen match in what amounts to a five hour show? Go for it. The reality is, each match could get an average of a half hour, and there’s still time left over. The more grand entrances, the singing performances, the surprise guests-they all add up. They’ve upped the ante with the video packages between each match, and especially because they use their own Network, they can be as deliberate as they desire to be. And, when it is all said and done, if WWE has put together five awesome hours of content? Like, a couple nice surprises, well-booked matches, a few celebrities sprinkled in…by the time the show is over, chances are you shut down a happy camper, and you know you are just going to have a WrestleMania hangover come Monday morning. And so long as the card, for the most part, was more hits than misses? There’s not a man, woman or child who would complain and say ‘Mania is too big.
So, dear reader…would you either keep it as-is, make it longer even, or cut it down?