So there’s been some grumbling in some parts about some superstars refusing to take pics with fans at airports, so let’s just put this out here: Fans are not entitled to pictures with WWE Superstars just because they run into them in public. That especially goes for female superstars. Many male fans seem to think that they are doing the women a service by cheering for them and therefore the women owe them a picture or autograph.
The sexist entitlement that some men have towards any woman is sickening on its own, but to think that a woman who has busted her butt, trained very had, and works a grueling schedule ‘owes’ a man their success and so should be honored to stop and take a picture when they’re in a hurry or tired from a long flight is on a whole different level. It also ignores the fact that female fans very often support female wrestlers. The wrestling fandom is not now, nor has it ever been, a boys’ club.
However, the guys have also been catching plenty grief for refusing lately. Roman Reigns, in particular, seems to plagued by fans claiming that he’s refused to take pictures with children. At least one of these stories was a pack of lies that was quickly discovered in the ‘evidence’ the accuser provided. Roman was accused on Sunday of telling a little girl to ‘get lost’ when she asked for a picture. Here’s the context: Reigns is on vacation with his wife and three children after barely being home for about a month due to the overseas touring. According to Reigns, who had to take time from his vacation to deal with this nonsense, he was feeding his sons and talking to his daughter (yeah, the guy asked Reigns for an autograph, even though he could see that Reigns was with his family), when a grown man approached him for an autograph. Reigns admitted that he refused, but tried to explain that he didn’t get a lot of time to spend with his kids but the guy stormed off and called Reigns a ‘sell out’. When Reigns clapped back at the accusations, the accuser doubled down and said his daughter could verify his story, not really seeming to consider the very poor lessons he was teaching his daughter about how to behave in public.
The lack of self-awareness and sense of entitlement in people who get upset when celebrities refuse to sign autographs and take pictures while in a public setting, especially when they’re with family and/or friends is a whole article in and of itself, but to make up a whole story to generate sympathy for yourself while basically saying ‘I acted like an entitled brat’ is just…ugh, and especially to behave that way in front of your own child and the child of the celebrity you’re demanding something from.
Let me say it again: The WWE Superstars don’t owe fans pictures and autographs when they are out with their families, SOs, or when they are traveling to entertain other fans. If you happen to see a WWE Superstar out in public, treat them like you would anyone else. If you want a picture or autograph, ask and try using the word ‘Please’. If they say no, don’t take it personally or call them out on Twitter, unless they’re extremely rude about it. They’re humans too and are entitled to privacy when out with their families or even just going to and from work. You are not entitled to their time away from the ring. Period.
Dear Smarks: WWE Does Listen To Fans
Either last week or earlier this week (my days are running together so I don’t remember), Stephanie McMahon was at a summit called ‘Game Changer’ and she made the following comment: ‘We’re successful for one reason only – we listen to our fans.’
The internet smarks ROASTED Stephanie over this comment, mocking her for claiming that WWE listens to their fans when, in their minds, that is clearly not the case. Why? Because Roman Reigns, not Braun Strowman is champion, among other things. Clearly, any company that makes Roman Reigns champion over Braun Strowman isn’t listening to their fans, or at least, their REAL fans. You know, the all-knowing, smark community who know how to run a multi-billion dollar business better than the people who work there do.
I’ve tackled this ‘Real fan’ nonsense in the past and I’m really not in the mood to do it now and the issue of Braun Strowman being champion is an article unto itself. However, let’s be clear here: WWE DOES listen to their fans and the fans they listen to are the fans that buy stuff.
WWE first, last, always, and forever, is a business. They need money to survive and being a publicly traded company, they need money to keep the shareholders happy, that means they have to know who and what makes the money to keep the shareholders happy and keep the company afloat and who is making them the most money is Roman Reigns.
Don’t give me that look. Don’t roll your eyes at me and grumble about him being over pushed and/or shoved down your throat. I can name several people in WWE not named Roman Reigns that are over pushed. The bottom line is that Reigns moves merchandise, his stuff sells and sells really well. Having been to a few WWE TV/PPV tapings, I can tell you that Reigns’ stuff can get a little tough to find and is usually the most requested item.
Now before any of you make snide comments about Reigns having more stuff to sell, I checked WWE’s shop are and compared the number of Roman Reigns shirts to the number of shirts for AJ Styles, in terms of shirts including: T-shirts, tank tops, hoodies and what’s available for both genders, Roman Reigns had thirteen shirts available while Styles had twenty. Thirteen different shirt designs to twenty and that doesn’t include hats, gloves, or the non-wearable stuff available.
Oh, Reigns’ stuff is bought by women and kids, so it shouldn’t count? Here’s my question: So what? It’s still money that SOMEONE is spending on merchandise. If WWE didn’t want women and kids to buy their stuff, they wouldn’t be marketing stuff for women and kids. Why? Because women and kids are FANS!
For those of you still grumbling, here’s some food for your thoughts: Why should WWE listen to their ‘real’ fans? No, I’m serious. Why should they listen to fans who cheer something one week, boo it the next, demand that indy darlings get pushed despite getting mediocre pops from Main Roster audiences, and pay more attention to beach balls and time clocks than the matches? Why should they listen to people who BRAG about spending a lot of money on tickets just to boo one person they don’t like?
WWE is like any company, they listen with their bottom line, and what they’re hearing from fans is that the fans like Reign because that’s the stuff that sells the best. And before you say one thing about about Reigns’ stuff being more available at TV tapings and Live Events, I’ve been to a RAW taping, a RAW PPV, and a SmackDown/205 taping and while Reigns stuff was at SmackDown, there was also a lot of Styles and Cena stuff available at RAW events and I’m not hearing any complaining about that.
Maybe the problem isn’t that WWE isn’t listening, it’s just that your views aren’t the what the majority paying fans think or want. WWE is catering to what most of their fans want, not just the small minority that can’t seem to make up their minds about what they want.
Cheap Shots: Should Finn Balor Quit WWE?
Why Finn Balor should “Quit” The WWE
After seeing KO burst into tears on Monday night RAW two weeks ago and “quit” there were a slew of videos about why KO “quit”. The biggest one was to revitalize his character. So in playing the devils advocate why not have the first Universal Champion quit? Here’s why!
After Balor won and “lost” the title after 2016 SummerSlam he’s had and up and down career in the main roster. The once longest reigning NXT champion was a phenomenon when he joined the NXT, but once he hit the main roster, while fan support is still there it is fleeting. He had a brief reunion with Gallows and Anderson which might’ve singled a heel turn to fans, a feud with Rollins for the IC title and has had back to back to back matches against Baron Corbin. None of which have done anything for the superstars character. A heel turn might have helped a few months ago, but the repetitive booking has kind of killed that momentum.
With Finn away from the scene for a while it might help the WWE reevaluate the talent that is Finn Balor, it might also give Finn time to figure himself out too. With a WIN to his name against Elias, it seems like the co-founder of the Bullet Club may either turn to his alter ego The Demon, or perhaps a superstar shakeup is in order and he should be in place to get Balor back in the limelight. Right now, Raw seems packed full of main card talent that is either starting a faction of sorts I.E. Braun, Drew and Dolph or is turning on The Shield.
Listen, while SmackDown Live is producing the better show, it is not like the talent on there is being utilized any better. Nakamura is in limbo with the U.S. title, Aj and Joe are having a great feud in terms of promos, but not in the squared circle. The only thing that brings SmackDown Live as the A show is really their tag division and the Charlotte Flair/Becky Lynch feud.
So maybe a frustrated Finn goes away, and comes back as The Demon on SmackDown Live and interjects himself in the feud between AJ and Joe, maybe he causes friction between The Club and AJ and they “screw over” AJ during a title match, the possibilities are endless moving Balor to team blue, but what this boils down to is WWE needs to make this move while Balor is still a fan favourite and what I mean by that is that he will always have the crowd behind him, but even the loyalist fans can get bored.