With Monday Night Raw seeing an extremely huge drop in ratings, I think it’s time to address the biggest issue with their current product. WWE has put all of their eggs in the Roman Reigns basket, and it is not paying off for them. While we can’t fault Roman personally for the way WWE has pushed his character, the overexposure and broad booking WWE has done for his character has hurt both Reigns and their product. Reigns is just a guy doing exactly what he is told. It doesn’t seem like he’s using backstage politics to get to the next level. However, WWE’s determination to shove his character down the throats of fans is starting to take its tow on the overall product. And if they continue to focus the entire product on getting one superstar over, Monday Night Raw’s ratings will continue to fall.
Let’s take a moment to analyze the great lengths WWE has gone so far to push Reigns as a babyface despite fan reactions, starting with the Royal Rumble. Roman Reigns began to gain some negative buzz around him leading up to the Rumble after a little overexposure. After fan favorite Daniel Bryan was eliminated, the crowd turned against the match after realizing a Reigns win was inevitable. Even the most electrifying man in sports entertainment wasn’t able to save Reigns from the sea of boos he received. But instead of taking that information and running with it for a decent heel turn, WWE tried once again to win the crowd over at Fastlane with an act of desperation.
WWE wants Roman Reigns to be a top babyface despite how fans feel about him. So they blatantly attempted to get him over by having him defeat fan favorite Daniel Bryan at Fastlane while hoping Bryan’s approval of Reigns would finally get the fans on board. Not only did it fail to do so, it spawned the embarrassing #CancelWWENetwork hashtag in which fans posted screen shots of their canceled WWE subscriptions. Definitely not a good look for WWE’s streaming service, and a complete misuse of an over wrestler in an attempt to help get Reigns over.
Another example of how WWE completely revolves around Reigns at the moment is how Seth Rollins became WWE champion. If it wasn’t for Reigns’ inability to get over, along with the #CancelWWENetwork hashtag, Seth Rollins would have never cashed in for the win. So in theory, Seth’s entire run as champion was geared towards him eventually dropping the title to Reigns once they’ve repaired his image. Rollins made the best of his time as champ given what WWE provided him to work with, but nothing shows how much WWE viewed him as a placeholder more than when they made Roman Reigns number one contender for the title not even 24 hours after John Cena took a break from the company. Because when it comes to pushing Reigns, WWE has the subtlety of a nuclear missile.
With the entire roster underutilized, and WWE using Ambrose’s popularity as a way to get Reigns over, WWE finally jumped the shark. They threw together a random mini competition the Monday after Hell in a Cell to crown a new number one contender. And not only did Reigns win to become number one contender, he went on to win the Survivor Serie tournament for the WWE championship after it was vacated. Two different tournaments with the same outcome. Yet WWE expected the fans to sympathize with Reigns being screwed out of the title at Survivor Series.
So here is the best way to describe WWE’s current relationship with its fans. Imagine that your favorite restaurant ever since childhood decided to serve only one dish. The meal is bland, and you’re just not a fan of it. There are other restaurants out there, but not as big and do not have the same special place in your heart. So you keep going there like you’ve always done out of habit. You order something else because you’re well aware that they have other things on the menu to offer, but they only offer you the same bland dish. So that leaves you with two options. You could either keep going there out of habit, or decide to no longer support what was once your favorite place to go. So with that in mind, it’s obvious to understand why Monday Night Raw’s ratings are extremely low at the moment.
WWE is not only placing their entire focus on Reigns, they’re also trying to force fans to like it. WWE fans are either tuning out from their programming, or eager to get Roman Reigns’ time as champion over with already. But WWE is currently initiating yet another plan to get Reigns over as a face in the company. We’ve reached a point in which Attitude Era Hall of Famers are speaking out on the current state of the product. So where do we go from here? Will their current attempt to get fans behind Reigns be their last before finally turning him heel, or is getting Reigns over the official focus of the company from here on? Because it is unanimously agreed upon by both fans and past WWE superstars that the current product is in desperate need of a change. Believe that.