Friday, April 24, 2009

Match of the Ye -- *CENSORED*

Apparently on the re-broadcast of ECW, which airs Saturday nights on Universal HD, two lines of commentary were edited out, and of course people with too much time on their hands noticed and had to alert the media! On the original broadcast, at the end of the Evan Bourne/John Morrison match, Matt Striker called it a "match of the year candidate" and Josh Matthews claimed it was a "five-star match," these were not heard on the re-airing, so according to the dirtsheets, these phrases are now on the WWE's mysterious list of "banned words."

In case you're not familiar with this list, it's the same one that last year the dirtsheets claimed that announcers were no longer allowed to call the talent "Superstars," but rather "entertainers." Of course, that was flat-out wrong and WWE now has a show called Superstars, which makes it even more hilarious. Also from last year, WWE had supposedly banned the use of the word "fans," and people who liked WWE had to be referred to as the "WWE Universe." Guess what the website address is for WWE Universe... yep, and I count at least three usages of the word "fan" right on the front page.

Obviously the phrase "match of the year" isn't banned by WWE, since they just gave Ric Flair and Shawn Michaels the award a few months ago when they brought back the Slammys. WWE probably just didn't want Matt Striker to be throwing around a term so loosely, especially just nine days after Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels, which was a match of the decade candidate. That's a total assumption on my part, all I can say for certain is that the phrase itself is not "banned." As for the other quote, I honestly wouldn't be surprised if announcers are told not to use phrases like "five star match" because the star rating system, especially used in a wrestling context, is incredibly stupid (more on that in the future).

Typical wrestling "journalism" for you, a couple phrases get edited out of a broadcast and suddenly they're on the mythical list of words you can never say on WWE television. I have no doubt WWE tries to shy away from certain jargon, Vince McMahon has made it perfectly clear over the years that he doesn't want his product to be associated with anything that might harken back to the days of "wrasslin," but maybe we can try to be a little less sensationalist about it? Instead of the slanted headline* "WWE's latest banned words," maybe try some legitimate journalism like "WWE edits ECW commentary." I know it's a lot to ask from people who couldn't cut it on a junior high school newspaper, but it's just another example of why people within the business will never take internet fans seriously. Do your part for a better internet wrestling community, demand better reporting.

*Notice the same headline and copy & pasted story on at least four different websites. Read more about this phenomenon here: Plagiarism could be a bad move in the long run.

1 comment:

  1. The wrestling journalism audience probably suffers from the same ills as the "regular" journalism audience: most people only read/listen to things that back up what they believe to be true in the first place. Sensationalism almost always wins.