September 17, 2007
Mike Abitabile

The Devilís Advocate:
Hornswoggle McMahon!?!

For all my readers who accuse me of being a McMahon-apologist, this is the column for you. As you could imagine, I was pumped last week for the payoff to the McMahon Love Child storyline. I thoroughly enjoyed the segment that took place the week before to end Raw where Kennedy was essentially written out of the storyline spot everyone assumed was his. That piqued my interest because the storyline was now wide open. And to be honest, I like Kennedy, so I wouldnít have minded that revelation, but I was annoyed that, not only were the news sites dead set on it being Kennedy, but WWE was doing pretty much the same thing. Hell, the way they were dropping subtle hints, the night the mother was supposed to be revealed, I was expecting Mr. Kennedy himself to walk out in a dress. But I digress.

But when Raw went off the air last Monday night, I actually cursed at my television trying to figure out what the hell just happened. I had it all played out in my head. Once the pool of possible candidates was thinned out, Mr. McMahon had those remaining enter the ring. I figured that once they narrowed it down to the winner, the lawyer would come back and say something like ďThe final clue is, your son is not standing in the ringĒ and the surprise winnerís music would hit and heíd come down the aisle. Blond hair, fair skin, fondness for goldÖÖ. I was expecting Shawn Michaels. Wouldnít have been perfect, but it wouldnít have been horrible either. Well, they threw the twist at us the candidates were down to one, all right. And Iíll admit, I was laughing. I thought it was pretty funny, and it seemed like a lot of the crowd did, too.

But I was thinking maybe something else would come out. Yet another twist and no one would see coming because they, like me, only expected one twist. Only, there would be no more twists and Raw went off the air. (Not before Triple H did his best to save the segment with his hysterical laughter and putting the leprechaun hat on Mr. McMahon which, again, had me in stitches).

So, letís do a quick tally. I was mad. A lot of online fans were mad (but then again, most of them would get mad if Lillian Garcia announced a wrestlerís weight incorrectly), and surprisingly, a few sites I scanned enjoyed the outcome, or at least took the stance that the storyline could play out funny from here on out. An example:

Dave Scherer ( ďAs for the choice of Hornswoggle, I like it. They can play this one for a ton of comedy and that is something that has been missing from the show for a while now.Ē (here)

Personally, I agree with that. Itís not the best choice, but itís not a horrible choice either. And I think thatís what most people are upset about. That it wasnít the best choice, and again, I agree. Most people would have liked it being a wrestler who could be involved in actual matches and save that storyline which was going to last until Wrestlemania. And they couldnít fathom why WWE would throw away such a huge storyline for a comedy spot. Thatís the same thing I was thinking, which is why I donít think we are done just yet with the Mr. McMahon love child storyline.

I really think this is just another twist that will be playing out over a few more weeks. I donít know if they will give Kennedy his spot back on October 1, but I really do think they arenít just going to throw this storyline away. (By the way, on the subject, the line from Mr. McMahon that Kennedy was suspended for Ďimpersonating a McMahonĒ was gold). I could be wrong, and it could be over, and if I am, I will be the first person to say it. But it just doesnít make any sense. Ratings were up. Interest was piqued. And they are now up against Monday Night Football again, which is never a fun time. Why throw that towel in during the first week of going head-to-head with MNF?

In addition, the suspense of the McMahon child did great ratings for Raw last week. It did a 3.9, which is not outstanding, but again, it was on against two games of Monday Night Football, so it was an extremely respectable number. On the other hand, MNF was down from last yearís opening night numbers, which means some of their audience could have gone to Raw. Then again The Closer on TNT did a great number, a 7.1, so they could have gone there. Nonetheless, Raw didnít get destroyed against football, which happened weekly last year, so WWE had to be happy. So again, I donít understand why they would throw it all away for a laugh? Hopefully, they didnít.

Another point on the ratings, back when I wrote my column on the magically shrinking Raw rating in July, I mentioned there were weeks when the fans were disgusted with the product and the rating never fell as much the next week as they tried to make us think it did at the end of July, when fans werenít up in arms about anything. This would be one of those weeks where fans are disgusted, so I would like to see where the Raw rating falls this week. I do expect it to be down, whether the storyline is over or not.

A final point I would like to address is something that was discussed on the World Wrestling Insanity radio show this week (here). The hosts discussed the possibility that WWE used Hornswoggle because they didnít want to give the gimmick to a wrestler who could use it in TNA or in the indyís if he ever left. I donít think thatís the case because they could either reveal that said wrestler wasnít really a McMahon and the lawyer was a liar before he left, or they could just sue for gimmick infringement. I donít think that argument holds any water.

So, letís just wait and see what happens. If this is it, I know a lot of people wonít be happy, including me. But, as I always contend, you canít judge something until it plays out. Remember, people hated Eugene, but that worked out good (well, at first). So letís see where this goes. You know, leprechauns would do anything for that pot of gold. But would they go as far as to hire a guy to pretend to be a lawyer in order to get that gold? (Please use that WWE, I wonít sue, Iíd actually be happy).

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