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Mr. Brown's Class: Disenchanted
By JONATHAN BROWN--MOP Squad Sports Writer
Oct 2, 2006 - 5:21:00 PM

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Disenchanted--I do not watch wrestling anymore.

Part of that has to do with the fact that I no longer control the remote control in the bedroom. My better, perennially pregnant half does and she no longer watches sports entertainment programs. I could go downstairs to watch wrestling but I just do not feel like I want to.

For the longest time, I have thought about what makes a wrestler valuable. When Triple H was injured a few years back, the ratings of WWE programming stayed consistent. When the Rock left, the ratings stayed consistent. When Stone Cold left, the ratings stayed consistent. Undertaker pops up every once in a while and the ratings go neither higher nor lower. So what gives? What causes a fan to watch or to not watch is much more complex than we give thought to.

For the longest time, I would not have been able to keep my eyes off of a Kurt Angle match. Now they do not faze me. RVD has had that effect, too. Now if he is on, good; If he is not, good. It makes no difference. Professional wrestling business people have not yet figured it out, but the reason we watch is quite simple, we are not pissed off enough to change the channel. Wrestling is an addiction. The wrestling dealer gives you freebies during the week, only to lure you in to the expensive buy-in once a month.

This is why marijuana is so dangerous. People smoke it because they figure, why not? Why not get high? Why not get drunk? Why not sleep with this slug of a person? Why not pay my bills late? Why not do my homework, say my prayers or tell a loved that you love them?

Why not? Easy--there has never been a consequence for not doing it. The reason why the vast majority of human beings do not play with fire is that we have gotten too close to a flame before. The reason that we do the things we do is not because of the benefits  they give to us. Most people do things out of habit.

Think about the channels you change to when you have a remote in your hand. I instinctively go to Cartoon Network, ESPN, Comedy Central and then TNT. Every single time. Most of the crap on Comedy Central is unwatchable, but I check in with it every single day.

But I no longer do that with wrestling.

I do not habitually check in with TNA or Raw or Smackdown. The reason why is quite simple. Why should I? There are lots of things to do on Monday, Thursday and Friday nights. Even if the WWE brought back Hulk Hogan and the Honky Tonk Man, it would not be enough to draw me back at this point.

What is the consequence for missing an episode of Smackdown or Raw? The last time a title changed hands off of a PPV was when? The last time a new feud started on Raw or Smackdown was when? The last time a new wrestling star made a debut was when? When was the last time a huge star returned unannounced? What is the consequence for not watching? Missing another HHH promo or lame DX joke? Or maybe we will avoid another Jeff Jarret guitar shot. Until the geniuses at the wrestling companies figure it out, it is not who is in the ring, but what is happening inside of it.

TNA?s signing of Kurt Angle will draw no one in for more than a minute. Jeff Hardy did not do it. Christian Cage did not do it. Samoa Joe did not do it. Kurt Angle will not do it.

I am disenchanted with wrestling. Until something new or relevant makes its way to the squared circle, I will wait until there is another live show in the area. In the meantime, I will continue to do what I have been doing over the last few weeks--change the channel when wrestling come on.

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