Tha Sports Junkies 101

Cancelled! Smacking Talk Gone After One Episode

Smacking Gage Skidmore via Wikimedia Commons


The Back Story

With the wrestling universe listening intently each week to the somewhat unscripted format of WWE’s “Talking Smack”, Vince McMahon decided to pull the plug on the show he didn’t have total control over. This was met with criticism and frustration from the internet wrestling community.

Rene Young and Daniel Bryan had created one of the few organic wrestling programs on WWE programming. Various news sources cited McMahon’s frustrations with the show’s format and the way it diminished the highly anticipated return of the New Day as reasons for the show’s cancellation. Using a play on words, a new show would emerge “Smacking Talk”.

Left Out in the Cold

Upon learning that the show was cancelled, Rene Young was clearly frustrated with the decision referencing her back stage interviewing duties as her fall back plan. Even the Miz who played the role of antagonist in the shows early episodes expressed his opinion on the matter stating that:

Tweets from Superstars

Renee Young,

“Really disappointed about #TalkingSmack. We tried to make that show great. Guess I’ll go back to welcoming my guest at this time.”

The Miz,

“RIP #TalkingSmack I enjoyed the freedom this show gave @wwe talent to showcase what they could do @ReneeYoungWWE brought the best out of all.”

The Smackdown General Manager, Daniel Bryan, was a huge component in the show and fostered the unscripted feel. His reaction illustrated his concerns stating that:

Daniel Bryan,

“I come online to support #SamiForSyria and find this out. I’m the GM!!! Nobody tells me anything!!!”

The Smacking Rebellion

After the cancellation, Daniel Bryan and Rene Young thought they had found a solution to their problem. They created a tongue in cheek response “Smacking Talk”. The show’s pilot episode would include a more humorous approach.

The big reveal that Chad Gable was Daniel Bryan’s son was a clear shot at the current program between Raw GM Kurt Angle and Jason Jordan. The episode was streamed on the social network site Tout which must have upset those behind the scenes at WWE.

Following their first episode, it was announced that the new show, “Smacking Talk”, was cancelled as well. Based on intellectual property concerns and contractual restrictions, it is easy to see why WWE would pull a power play here and cancel the show. In a way, it was criticizing the decision of Vince McMahon.

It undermines the decision of the company and thus can be cancerous in the locker room if unaddressed. Despite the latest cancellation, the “Smacking Talk” attempt came off well and showed the fans just how rebellious Daniel Bryan and Rene Young can be. Unfortunately it won’t reach episode #2 with Daniel Bryan Tweeting:

Daniel Bryan,

“Sorry everyone, rogue  only lasted one week before being shutdown.

We’ll keep on fighting the good fight. @ReneeYoungWWE 

What Now?

After this latest incarnation of the show, it is clear that WWE may be more out of touch with what their fans want than originally thought.

The product has become stale. The matches are repetitive and too predictable. The talent pool is so large that many starts go extended periods of time off television. Most of all, casual fans, who used to bring huge ratings for WWE weekly programming, are tuning in to alternative programs and WWE is losing viewership at an alarming rate.

The cancellation of “Talking Smack” and the subsequent cancellation of “Smacking Talk” reinforce Vince McMahon’s antiquated and poor business plan for the 21st century.

To allow WWE to prosper, a new more reality based approach seems to be what the fans want. The real question is whether WWE will ever listen to the true die hard wrestling fans in terms of their programming or will they remain indifferent towards our interests?

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