Let me admit right off the bat that I don’t watch 100% of WWE Monday Night Raw, and for the past month, I haven’t watched even 1% of Smackdown or Main Event. So I had to check with my compatriot, Kevin Difrango on this one: To the best of his knowledge, I asked, have either the Miz or Kofi Kingston cut any promos explaining why they’re feuding, why they’re hot and their cold, they’re yes and they’re no?
“Not that I recall,” was the response. And this from a guy who watches pretty much every televised moment of pro wrestling, state of mind be damned.
In my sporadic watching, I’ve seen this Miz vs. Kingston feud unfold in the ring – lots of feminine slapping, some mean-mugging, and a bunch of backstabbing and double-crossing.
Now, when Hulk Hogan feuded with Andre the Giant in 1987, I knew why. When Ultimate Warrior feuded with Rick Rude in 1989 and again in 1990, I knew why. When Shawn Michaels feuded with Diesel or when Dusty Rhodes wanted to elbow the taste out of Ric Flair’s mouth, I knew why every time.
How did I know why? Because they told me. They actually stood in front of a microphone and told me. The best – or the most average, or even the most midcard, or even the weirdest – talkers have always been given the chance to speak their minds, 30 seconds to 15 minutes at a time, to get their feud over. After all, if we know why two pro wrestlers want to fight each other, it gives us a reason to care, which in turn gives us an excuse to spend our money, which generates revenue for the professional wrestling business.
Having said that, why isn’t The Miz – one of the better talkers on the roster – cutting quick promos on a regular basis to stay under Kofi’s skin? Or why isn’t Kofi – whose athleticism has been pushed for half a decade now – been given a chance to hone his interview skills against a very dislikable opponent? I’m guessing, based on body language, that I’m supposed to infer what’s happening here. That’s some next-level shit that doesn’t play in the WWE Universe, where subtlety is a sledgehammer across the back of the skull in canary-yellow tights. Maybe if I knew Miz’s and Kofi’s motivations, I would have been quicker to spend money ordering WWE Survivor Series, or I wouldn’t let my wife choose “The Voice” over “Raw,” or “absolutely nothing” over “Smackdown.”
The Miz is a “proven” main eventer, and Kofi needs character development worse than a hooker needs Carmex. Just let them talk. I mean, what’s the worst they could do? Certainly not worse than bitch-slaps.
(NOTE: I had a scare here a minute ago. In looking for a picture to top this page, I found a shot of Kofi in a suit, chewing out Miz on the mic. I thought, “Crap, I put too much thought into this and missed one key segment that trumps the whole idea.” Well, lucky me (and unlucky, WWE Universe), this picture is from the 10/15/2012 Raw! Mmmmm, reheated midcarders…)