Sunday, December 25, 2005

Happy Festivus: The Airing of Grievances

Jerry Stiller's character on Seinfeld introduced us to Festivus, a holiday alternative to Christmas. Despite the show being off the air for a good seven years now, many of the gags, mannerisms, sayings and et ceteras on the show have become cultral phenomena; Festivus is one of them.

Now, a big part of Festivus was the Airing of Grievances, so as we celebrate Festivus today, I have a big grievance to air as it concerns this hobby of ours.

Long, boring matchwriting.

For those of you who know me, you know that in the past, I've railed against things I've seen as pretentiousness in music, movies and general attitudes in the various places I post at on the Internet or from just talking to me in real life. But usually, it's in an area that you can pretty much ignore. I don't like Kid A and beyond era Radiohead because I find them pretentious. Oddly enough, Creed after their first album is the same way with me. I don't have to listen to them. I have a vast CD collection of music that I can just dive into.

But when pretentiousness invades e-fedding, especially feds that I'm in and want to follow, it gets pretty irritating. I can't really just skip over the matches, because I want to get the full effect of storylines. A lot of times, that's lost if the match is too winding.

I mean, it seems to me that a lot of times, when a match is too long, I assume the matchwriter is trying to make an epic, a match on the level of of Steamboat/Savage at WM III or Hart/Austin at WM XIII or any other epic match in wrestling history. I mean, that's all well and good, but if you notice, there are a vast variety of matches shown in real wrestling. Not every match is a 20 minute five-star classic. However, most good matches on TV at least try to get across a statement, a point, something to further the storyline.

I feel a lot of matchwriters need to focus on that aspect rather than the "oh-em-gee, I wanna write Benoit/Angle again!" aspect. Say something in the match. Who cares if it's not 15 pages in MS Word, or if it doesn't have thirty-million nearfalls, or if both wrestlers don't come out of the match looking like ring generals. Just write the match to where it gets across a point and where both wrestlers look good (unless one or both of them no-showed... then I wouldn't mind to see them buried).

That's not to say that all long matches suck. I mean, I've read some really, really good epics. More recently, Miles/Mayfield and Miles/KVC are standouts. I mean, if you can write an epic and do it in a way where you keep my eyes glued to the monitor for the entire duration, then more props to you, and I want you writing the main event for the fed you're in.

But if you're writing length for length's sake, then reconsider why you became a matchwriter in the first place.

And now that grievances have been aired, may the Feats of Strength begin! Don! Brunk! Dan West! Jarrett! To the front! :p

Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, or whatever holiday you celebrate, may it be joyous and safe for you and your family.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Preach on. Not every match needs to tear the house down and when everything is written as an epic, the real epics lose their appeal and identity. In the final days of MBE we were sticking to a two hour block including taking out time for commercials for the weekly, so before we wrote a match the writer would be assigned an amount of time to fill and would do so. Now, a lot of the matchwriting sucked at that point, but the idea of scripting the show out in a more time sensitive and therefore realistic way was a good one, I thought. There is nothing wrong with only giving a couple of guys 5 minutes if you are building to a PPV blow off or at least helping their program or respective programs progress.