I am certain that everyone reading this who watched Wrestlemania 33 enjoyed at least a few moments of it. Regardless of where you stand on Roman Reigns as a babyface, part-timers getting the spotlight or titles not being valued, the show had plenty of spectacle and its fair share of surprises.
As a form of Monday morning quarterbacking, here are five changes that I believe could have made Wrestlemania 33 even more interesting and/or exciting:
#1 – Lose The Live Music
Pitbull has millions of fans, per social media stats, and plays large concerts all around the world. But Pitbull connects with a very small percentage of the WWE artist. For Pitbull and friends to perform live during Wrestlemania, this means that a few minutes come out of the wrestling. I understand that the live performance is there to provide some variety and also feeds into production change-overs, but a great video package or a backstage skit could also fulfill that purpose. I say this as someone who listens to music more of the day than almost every day: Almost nothing divides a large audience more than music.
#2 – Fewer Fireworks
Fireworks are exciting. Unless you are a regular visitor to Disney theme parks, they are most likely not something that you see every day. They are for special occasions. But for fireworks to follow almost every single match at Wrestlemania 33, that is a bit much. Not every one of those matches was special. Having fireworks two or three times? Acceptable. Fireworks because Pitbull is performing? Unacceptable. (As an aside, I do appreciate how good of a sport Pitbull was to that Walmart contest a few years ago.)
#3 – Fewer Matches
13 matches between the kick-off show and regular card of Wrestlemania 33? I love wrestling, but that’s too much wrestling. Even if you are watching from the comfort of a home, your energy is going to decline as the evening goes on. Dean Ambrose is great, but did his match with Baron Corbin really resolve anything? It was smart that some of the matches featured more than two competitors, but one cannot deny that there was plenty of fat to be trimmed from this year’s card.
#4 – Lose The Host
The New Day is very entertaining and everyone knows that. But what does the host of Wrestlemania really do? An on-screen matchmaker or authority figure is not needed like it is on Raw or Smackdown since the card — last-minute Hardyz addition aside — is already set. As with the musical performances, that same time could have been allotted to a match, or just shaved off to make it more of a concise presentation.
#5 – Lose The Super Bowl Aspirations
Wrestlemania is generally known as WWE’s Super Bowl. It’s the pay-per-view that draws their biggest viewership of the year, takes over the city that it is hosting it, and serves as the end of a lot of storylines. But unlike the NFL, the WWE does not have an off-season. Also, while WWE pay-per-views now have commercials, no one watches Wrestlemania “for the commercials” like many do with the Super Bowl. So in knowing that the audience is full of so many die-hard fans, why does the company aim for the lowest common denominator? Although there are some people who only tune in once a year for Wrestlemania, the vast majority of the audience is made up of people who watch WWE regularly. In turn, there is no need to use the Super Bowl as the model of Wrestlemania, especially when most of the following day’s Monday Night Raw audience attended the previous evening’s event.