Friday, 18 April 2014

Isn't It Strange? Feels Like I'm Lookin' In the Mirror

I want you to imagine somebody.

This man is an underdog in the company he works for. He's been waiting a long time, but has struggled to get anywhere. People have treated him like a joke.

But then, after so long, he's got his chance. He's gone through two gruelling matches in one evening. He's sustained an arm injury. He's suffered and struggled. But at last, he has the World Heavyweight Championship.

Oh, and he also has an awesome beard.

When you read this description, who do you imagine?

Eric Young? Or Daniel Bryan?

Image © Krystal Bogner via Flickr.

I'm not a WWE fan nowadays, but I still watched Wrestlemania XXX. I saw Daniel Bryan's story from that show. I saw Eric Young's story last week.

And they resemble each other a lot. Perhaps a little too much.

Other people have mentioned this already. Caustic Internet critic and wrestling fan Noah "The Spoony One" Antwiler has complained about it. And Ring Rust Radio even asked Eric Young himself about it in a recent interview.

Now I've got nothing against EY. I love him as a character and he seems like a pleasant enough dude outside the ring as well.

Image © Mike Kalasnik via Flickr.

But from a writing perspective, I have to tilt my head because there is no way that this is an accident.

Daniel Bryan is huge news right now. Fans have tried to hijack shows in support of him. Twitter buzzes with his name. He is over in a huge way.

So I can understand why TNA would want to try to grab some of that for themselves by putting over a similar-looking underdog.

My problem is that they seem to have copied too much. Having EY fight two matches in one night is suspect enough. But giving him an arm injury as well? When that was such a big part of the Daniel Bryan story?

I'm sorry, but it just looks desperate and underhanded, TNA.

And the saddest part is that while I loved EY becoming champion, Daniel Bryan's matches were just better.

Why? Because his opponents actively went after his injured arm, and Magnus didn't seem to bother.

After all, why have EY get hurt if you're not going to do anything with it?

But what would I have done?

It's hard to say. I don't know how the WWE built up to Daniel Bryan's Wrestlemania. I could easily suggest something they did by accident.

What I would have done is separate out the title shot and the 10 Man Gauntlet so that the parallels were less obvious.

And perhaps have given EY a different injury. A leg injury, perhaps.

Because right now, the similarities are just too many for comfort.

It's like fashion. Everything's been done before and you just add your spin to it.

Except that in this case, the WWE and TNA have turned up in the same frock. One of you is going to have to change outfits. And well. The WWE was here first...

Image © The Heart Truth via Flickr.

See you on the Sunday Crew.

– Stark

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