By Erich Pilcher
Since 2001 WWE has been kings of the wrestling world. When the purchased ECW and WCW they effectively bought out the competition. Now there have been organizations that have come and gone (TNA, IMPACT or whatever they are known as this week) that fans thought would challenge the wrestling juggernaut. However, those hopes and thoughts fell by the wayside as the singular dominance by WWE continued.
Heavy is the head that wears the crown.
The Bullet Club has set the pro wrestling world on fire. Spurred on with charismatic personalities, with equally impressive in ring ability, fans have flocked to this group and merchandise sales indicate this. WWE in the meantime is faced with plummeting ratings, abysmal live show attendance and rumors of having to give free tickets to televised shows. It would appear WWE has lost touch with its audience.
On September 25 2017, members of the Bullet Club staged an “invasion” OF WWE Monday Night Raw. The invading members were The Young Bucks, Marty Scrull, Cody Rhodes, his wife Brandi and the Hangman Adam Page. The invasion was filmed by the Young Bucks for their drastically popular YouTube series Being the Elite.
In the series Page had just broken free of torture (by making him watch WWE programming) from WWE. The group was invading due to this reason and others. This includes Rhodes not being able to use that name (it is owned by WWE), Scrull losing his signature umbrella (an idea stolen by WWE for use with Jack Gallagher, an member of the groups underperforming cruiserweight division) and the Young Bucks losing the ability to use their catchphrases (#FTR and su*k it). The invasion was done tongue in cheek. It was a parody of the famed DX invasion of WCW. It was well received and #BCInvasion dominated Twitter. Even, overtaking #RAW throughout the night.
Some people did not appreciate the joke.
September 26 2017, the Young Bucks were served an actual cease and desist (actual is key because previously on their show they jokingly indicated to receive one from WWE) to stop using the phrase “Too Sweet” and using the Kliq hand logo because it was trademarked by the company. Immediately all merchandise referencing the hand signal or phrase were removed from youngbucksmerch.com. In the order the duo were threatened with being sued for up to $150,000 in damages.
The problem with all of this is this is a major deflection by the WWE. This is their way of deflecting from their own problems. WWE is in an awful state right now. The aforementioned problems show this, it shows the fans have had enough. We are tired of part-time champions, the same old storylines and the same old top people. This idea the WWE is “He is big, he is muscular and he has a touch of charisma, that’s a top guy, let’s strap him” (say that in your best Vince McMahon voice) is old and passé. The problem is WWE and their front office staff are so out of touch, they don’t realize it.
To serve this order to the Young Bucks is deflection at its best and childish pettiness at its worst. WWE has done nothing with “two sweet” or the kliq hand sign in over 3 years. The Young Bucks and the Bullet Club should be thanked by WWE for bringing a doormat gimmick back to life. By suing the Young Bucks WWE and the McMahon family are trying to reassert power over the wrestling world. Power they have lost. Instead of trying to fix their stagnant, stale and depreciated product, they are going after those that are successful in an attempt to get them to fall in line or fall down.
This is much more than the Bullet Club, hand signs and catchphrases. This is a last ditch effort for the Wrestling Camelot to avoid total humiliation. NJPW sold out shows in the same area this past July that WWE could not draw in over one week of events. For the first time an NJPW star was number one in the PWI 500 and ROH is making headway in keeping stars with them, instead of having the joining the alleged “greener pastures” of WWE. Instead of fighting for survival, WWE is disgustingly and embarrassingly trying to save face.
We as fans MUST NOT tolerate this. I’m done with WWE. I have unfollowed all WWE social media accounts, canceled my network subscription and refuse to give the wrestling evil empire a cent of my money. I know it doesn’t matter to them, but it matters to me.