There are wrestling tropes Triple H must retire if he wants to regain the WWE Universe’s goodwill. Let’s look at them and decide if any are worth saving.
Although fans and wrestlers seem thrilled to have “The Cerebral Assassin” running the show in creative, the novelty will quickly wear off if fans see the resumption of these bad tropes.
Wrestling Tropes Triple H Must Retire: Ten Terrible Tropes
1. Can These Wrestlers Co-Exist?
One of Vince’s go-to tools was the idea of pairing up two wrestlers with some sort of beef. This usually involved frenemies who were competing for the same title or a shot at a title.Inevitably, the wrestlers clash, either during or after their match.
This trope has been used effectively on rare occasions but its predictability and overuse make it one of the best candidates for a quick retirement.
2. Re-Starting a Singles Match and Making It a Tag Match
This was a Vince McMahon favorite for years (especially during that bizarre phase when Vince refused to have matches take place during commercials).
One alternative is to book a tag match, but to set it up for the next week or at a premium event. This could help build interest for future shows. RAW used this trope on the 1 August 2022 edition which isn’t a good sign for Triple H’s use of tropes.
3. Contract Signings
Contract signings are overused and predictable, two signs it’s time to retire a trope. WrestleLamia can remember the WWE holding contract signings on both RAW and SmackDown the same week, a clear sign of bad booking.
4. Breaking Up Tag Teams with No End Game
The break-up of The Rockers (Shawn Michaels and Marty Jannetty) remains one of the greatest storylines in professional wrestling but for every storyline such as the Mega-Powers Explode! there have been dozens of pointless break-ups with no endgame.
Rumor has it that Vince McMahon wasn’t a fan of tag team wrestling, which could explain why he felt their main use was to further singles programs and create new feuds.
Fans saw this with factions as well. The promising faction Retribution split up while The Hurt Business (which was undeniably over with the fans) broke up before it even hit its peak.
The reason these break-ups failed was because the WWE had no follow-up. Mustafa Ali disappeared from WWE TV after Retribution imploded while The Hurt Business’ Shelton Benjamin and Cedric Alexander faded back into the mid-card.
5. Endless Rematches
This trope dates back to the Attitude Era when the WWE aired the same match that occurred on pay-per-view the RAW after a show.
Rematches are important in wrestling and if a match is good enough, fans will want to see it take place more than once. The secret is to build the stakes with each match so fans feel invested in seeing it happen again.
For example, a heel can cheat their way to victory in the first match, leading to a special referee the second match. A heel could have outside interference, leading to a cage match. The possibilities are many but the WWE often runs the same type of match for its rematches and doesn’t give the fans a breather.
The Cody Rhodes vs. Seth Rollins feud was handled well in that the WWE reserved their matches for premium events and spaced them out over roughly a month each.
Compare this with any program in the WWE (other than programs involving Roman Reigns, whose part-time schedule makes it difficult to book any rematches).7
The WWE rarely changes up its rematches by booking them in exciting ways such as expanding a singles feud into a tag team match or booking a stipulation for the follow-up match.
6, Evil Authority Figure
Eric Bischoff and Vince McMahon set the standard when it came to authority figures who abused their power. Bischoff’s work in WCW as the nWo’s leader was excellent while Vince McMahon took things further as Mr. McMahon.
Unfortunately, the evil authority figure has been done to death and Vince McMahon set the bar so high, that it’s doubtful anyone can do as good a job or handle the trope in a novel way that freshens things up and entertains.
7. Finishers that Don’t Finish
WrestleLamia knows this trope is unlikely to end but what is more entertaining, the question whether a wrestler can land their finisher (which will conclusively end the match), or the question of how many finishers it will take to end a match?
In the first case, there are ways for a wrestler to hit a finisher and not win the match (a referee bump, an opponent is close to the rope and gets their foot on the rope, outside interference, etc.) but they should be used sparingly.
In the latter case, wrestlers repeatedly hit their finishers without ending a match, begging the question why are they called finishers?
Not every wrestler needs a finisher. Mid-card wrestlers may have a signature move but it should be established that they’re still working on it, perfecting it to the level where it will eventually become a finisher.
8. The Roll-Up Finish
A wrestler can work a 20-minute match, get hit with a wrecking ball, and still kick out. So why do wrestlers routinely fail to escape a roll-up after a dumb-ass distraction (often someone playing a rival’s entrance music).
9. Using Cruiserweights as Enhancement Talent
Cruiserweights may or may not have a place in wrestling. For some fans, they’re a fantastic attraction while for others, theyre a reason to forage through the refrigerator for leftover pizza.
However you feel about them, cruiserweights should not be used as cannon fodder for larger wrestlers. The WWE should have local talent or curtain-jerkers ready to serve that purpose.
Every rule has an exception. The classic is Rey Mysterio, who has successfully played David against many of the WWE’s Goliaths. These matches have rarely been squashes, a reminder that cruiserweights normally belong in their own weight division.
10. 20-Minute Promos
The last time WrestleLamia heard an entertaining 20-minute promo was The Rock and Mick Foley’s “Rock: This is Your Life” segment (still the highest-rated segment in WWE history and actually a 14-minute segment).
While the 14-minute segment had its moments and pulled in the ratings, it went way past its allotted time, creating problems for the rest of the show.
Indeed, Bruce Prichard once remarked on his podcast about why the segment was a mistake, despite pulling in huge numbers:
Here’s the thing – okay great, after the fact, it did a great rating. But the effect it had on the rest of the television show was horrendous because now you’re having two and three minute segments and matches are getting cut. Essentially, they went two segments over. That is one of my pet peeves with writers. Russo didn’t care; he didn’t have to re-write it and he didn’t have to fix it.H/T Sportskeeda
Wrestling Tropes Triple H Must Retire
Analysis: Whether Triple H retires these tropes will play a role in how successful he is creating an entertaining product. \
As a long-time fan, I’ve seen many tropes employed throughout the years by bookers.
The difference between a bad trope and a good trope is how it is used. If you can take something and put a fresh and entertaining spin on it, you’re successful.
The difficulty arises when writers and bookers get lazy and use a trope as a crutch. “We don’t know what to do with this team so let’s split them up” may seem easier than writing an enticing program with another team.
Conversely, splitting up a team and putting them into a long feud where two mid-card acts are elevated offers potential. The fans may not respond the way a booker wants but at least the effort was made.
Are there other wrestling tropes that Triple H must retire? Are there any that should be added to our list or kept on our list? Let us know in the comments below.