One of the key elements to WWE staying relevant and popular with wrestling fans. Their ability to try new things to make their television product as fresh as possible. This has mixed results over the years as some radical ideas have been poorly received and have been dropped without any context or any explanation. Also, there are some times when WWE will present a new idea to fans. Fans will actually react rather positively to the idea however if upper management well more specifically. Vince McMahon falls out of favor with the new concept or idea. Then it’ll likely be dropped immediately never to be seen again but which things were they well.
Looks at 10 Radical Ideas that were immediately dropped in WWE
10. WWE’s Junior Division
In 2005 WWE made concrete plans to revamp its cruiserweight division. They would introduce the junior division and this would be a key part of the SmackDown product. The featured names were such as Juventud Guerrera, Psychosis Paul London, Brian Kendrick, Jamie Noble, and Billy Kidman. The idea on paper sounded fantastic but this was until Vince McMahon allowed Johnny Ace aka John Laurentis to be in charge of hiring new talents for the division. For whatever reason, ace decided to hire a bunch of wrestlers instead of any credible and notable superstars for the division. Due to ace’s blunder, WWE was forced to feature the Mexican wrestlers that ace had bizarrely hired. The division just lasted over five months and by 2006 all of the aces hires were released from the WWE contracts.
9. Turnbuckle Camera
WWE likes to experiment with new production techniques this was most definitely the case in 2015. That year WWE introduced cameras on the ring post facing the ring. This was a completely new technique and they were heavily featured during the 2015 Fastlane pay-per-view event. The cameras allowed fans to get a closer look at the action and they were mainly used on replays particularly. When it came to the match finishes the concept didn’t last too long and the new cameras were quickly removed. Fans had mixed thoughts on the cameras at the time as whilst there was a degree of appreciation for them. WWE trying something new and the overall quality of the shots on offer simply wasn’t worth it.
8. The Shields Mask
In 2014 WWE decided to turn Dean Ambrose, Roman Reigns, and Seth Rollins into babyface for the first time. The trio collectively known as the shield had reached new heights in terms of popularity and WWE quite rightly believed they had. Three future WWE main eventers are on their hands to mark their first base turn. The shield began to wear skull face masks as part of their entrance. These would notably appear during their entrance for Wrestlemania 30 against Kane and the New Age outlaws.
However for some reason shortly after they debuted, the masks were removed and the trio would stop wearing them to the ring. The masks were a great feature of the shield’s aesthetic and fans were disappointed that they decided tore move them interestingly. The mask would make a return during the shield 2018 reunion. Even though they weren’t the exact same design that they used four years prior. They were all black and were all similar to the appearance of Bane’s Mass from the batman comics and movies.
7. SmackDown Top 10
The SmackDown top 10 ranking system made its first appearance in 2018 and would only last a total of one month before it was removed and virtually never mentioned again. The ranking system was announced and introduced at the time by SmackDown general manager Daniel Bryan. Now the radical ideas behind the ranking system were that superstars would cast votes and the top 10 would be ranked based. On these votes, Brian then uses to book matches and decides who gets a title shot. The concept was incredibly unique for WWE but failed to create any true excitement which explains why it was dropped rather abruptly.
6. Raw Dark
On May 20 2019 edition of Raw WWE Hall of Famer Mick Foley came to the ring. The hardcore legend would make two announcements. The first announcement was that they were introducing the 24/7 championship, a title that still exists in WWE to this very day. The second one was an announcement that the third hour of Raw would be more gritty. Moving forward the concept sounded like a breath of fresh air but in reality, nothing had really changed. WWE simply dimmed the lighting of the show in the third hour that was literally the experiment that lasted a total of two weeks before. WWE reverted back to normal lighting for the third hour of Raw.
Fans expected WWE to introduce more hardcore and grittier elements into the third hour, especially for those laps’ fans who may not be watched since the Monday night wars but it wasn’t the case it was clear that WWE didn’t honestly know what the logic and aim behind the radical ideas truly were.
5. The Alternative WWF Scratch Logo
As WWE has had a number of logos over the years and possibly the most iconic is. Without a doubt, the scratch logo rose to prominence during the attitude era interestingly. For a promo package for the UK exclusive pay-per-view in May 1999 titled No Mercy, WWE would use a never-before-seen logo in the promo package. The logo featured the classic scratch logo however the F was separated from the W. It’s unclear why they used this logo variant some fans speculate that WWE wasn’t able to use the WWF scratch logo in the UK due to the legal battles with the world wildlife fund.
However, this isn’t true as they would use the iconic logo throughout their UK programming this variant of the logo was only ever used on this one particular occasion. It remains a mystery why they tried the logo for this particular promo video. It may have simply come down to an error in production and the editing team simply edited in well the wrong logo.
4. WWE VR
In 2018 WWE made an announcement that they would be incorporating virtual reality into their programming. The first time WWE would do this would be during Wrestlemania 35 but interestingly they failed to make a big deal out of the VR incorporation. Even though they were the first wrestling company in the world to utilize the new technology following Wrestlemania 35. WWE wouldn’t use VR in any of their programs until the 2019 survivor series pay-per-view this, however, would be the last time that they would use the technology and the radical ideas would be dropped. Following the pay-per-view, it was never made clear why VR was never used in WWE. Again they may have simply come down to the technology not being cost-effective. This is probably something that would have been great during the pandemic era though.
3. RAW Underground
On the 20th of August, the 2020 edition of raw WWE would debut RAW underground. RAW underground was in essence Shane McMahon running a backstage secret fight club for WWE superstars. The concept was kind of unique and there was nothing like WWE had ever done before. Our fans reacted positively to the concept and it was great to see superstars such as Shayna Baszler, Bobby Lashley, and Dolph Ziggler. All make appearances unfortunately the concept only lasted around two months before it was dropped forever. WWE believed that running this concept during the global pandemic was just far too risky. They didn’t want to risk any rise in infections so it was simply canceled without any on-air explanation. RAW Underground would then be virtually erased from WWE history. Superstars who appeared on RAW Underground such as Omos and Commander Aziz were repackaged.
2. The SmackDown Hacker
The SmackDown hacker would be first introduced in early 2020. The hacker would infiltrate the WWE program and would see him reveal personal information about WWE superstars for instance. He revealed a plan of Sonya Deville and Dolph Ziggler to keep Mandy Rose and Otis apart. Well, there was a lot of speculation as to who the hacker was going to be fans believe that it was going to be Mustafa Ali and a number of sources confirmed this, however. In the summer of 2020, the segments in the character were dropped with the media effect in relation to Ali. Ali would begin to lead the retribution stable on RAW an infamous stable that whilst having a lot of potentials was a hundred thanks to poor presentation and weak storytelling the reason.
The storyline that was dropped was that Ali was randomly moved to raw shortly before. He was revealed as the leader of the retribution stable which left WWE in a difficult position. They decided to reveal that Ali was the SmackDown hacker during a random backstage segment on RAW in October. Now the storyline of the SmackDown hacker had a lot of potential there was a lot of interest in the story from fans. However, due to WWE dropping the segments and the storyline rather abruptly the ultimate reveal was very lackluster.
1. WWE’s 2001 WCW Reboot
When WWE acquired WCW in 2001 the initial plan was to rebrand RAW as a WCW cantered show SmackDown would then become WWE’s new show. This idea was an interesting one to say the least before WWE executed it they would perform a trial run on the 2nd July edition of RAW. For the show’s main event RAW would into a WCW production. The graphics music and even the commentary team were altered to match the WCW brand. The match that they were trial was Buff Bagwell Vs Booker T for the WCW title.
Sadly the match was one of the worst received matches in RAW history. The crowd wanted no part of it whatsoever they would Boo both men extensively. The crowd only wanted to see WWE talent so they simply had zero interest in seeing anyone from WCW. When Stone Cold Steve Austin and Kurt Angle interfered in the match the crowd would give both men an enormous pop. This was interesting as the two men were two of the top heels in WWE at the time which just showed how much the crowd hated the radical ideas of WCW taking over RAW. Following the match, Vince McMahon would decide to ax the idea of a WCW Reboot. Altogether instead he would proceed with the invasion storyline over the next few months. There you have it folks 10 radical ideas in WWE that were dropped immediately.
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source: Wrestlelamia youtube