Someone on the Blog Of Doom showed (yet another) difference between WWF and WCW…whenever WWF ran shows with large crowds, they’d ensure the largeness of the crowd came across on TV, wheras WCW’s production teams were unable/not qualified enough to do the same. WCW had more people in their building that night, but guess which one looks more full?

  • Nolo King

    Not sure how this even matters, people are too concerned about what other people think of their interest, just enjoy something whether a million people or one person is watching it, lawls!

    • I think you missed the point

    • I don’t even know how to respond. It just comes across as a complete non-sequitor barely related to the post. It’s like if someone wrote a comment about the Chris Brown/Rihanna domestic abuse case and said something about how it shouldn’t matter whose music is better.

      • Nolo King

        That is a stupid comparison, my post is relevant because the only reason you would want to convey a bigger crowd on television is because insecure viewers want to feel better when their guilty pleasure is watched by more people and are usually the ones who show their cynical friends that watching wrestling is still cool based on the amount of people in the arena, lawls!

        • Nny

          What the fuck dude? Its so people flippin channels see the large crowd and stop to check out whats going on. Because so many people watching it make it look interesting.

          Its got nothing to do with insecure fans blah blah what you said. You insecure dumbass. ;-p

          I kid i kid

          • PlanBFromOuterSpace

            It SHOULD be all about “We look more impressive than the other guy”.  It’s the production team’s JOB to be “concerned about what other people think of their interest”, especially when there’s another show on just like it that’s trying to out-do them.  It’s important to give yourself an edge and be more visually impressive to the people that don’t know better.  Sure, the wrestling itself could still be stellar if the show was held in a GARAGE, but like someone else said, you’re not going to give it a second thought if you’re a channel-surfer that wasn’t already going to watch the show anyway, and THOSE were the people that helped push viewership to such crazy levels during the Monday Night War.

    • Nolo King’s a gimmick poster, no point in talking to him.

  • I love your lastest post on WCW vs. WWF crowds.

    Very true, WCW, especially during the Bischoff time frame had larger crowds, yet only at Pay per views would you hear Tony S. and Bobby Heenan actually mention that attendance figures. 

    WCW spent a lot less on lighting effects, pyro and technicians. A half as job while clearing the smoke or vacuuming it, after a Wrestler’s pyro went off, example Goldberg, Kevin Nash, what not…it made the Arena seem less clear and less colorful. Having said that if you look back at a 2003 WWE documentary The Monday Night Wars, Eric Bischoff speaks about how when he came in to power running WCW, he wanted to remove the dim lighting effects in early WCW shows, ( one of his so called accomplishments in WCW ), and put them in well lighted arenas. What a load of Bischoff!!!!!The reality is Bischoff was given a 2 hour time slot for a WCW show on TNT, a decision granted by Ted Turner, that show would end up being WCW Nitro as we all well know. Including huge funding for professional production crews and sound and light technicians. But as we can see on that comparison picture just recently posted, I guess that money was spent elsewhere

    • Ask Lanny Poffo. He probably still has some of the catering budget in his Isa.

    • nwa88

      Well he certainly did remove the dim lighting — take a look at any WCW production from 1992.  That’s not exactly the same thing that we’re talking about here.

      I think part of the issue is that Vince was always way ahead of everyone else in the production department — so WCW had a lot of catching up to do.  Granted they made huge headway, especially once Nitro came on the air, but the WWF always stayed ahead on that stuff, where I think WCW got TNTs hand me down cameras.  Most of their budget was spent on wrestlers, not production.  I agree about the smoke — that became a huge problem and really hurt the look of the production.  The WWF definitely had an image that ‘popped’ off the screen, while WCW tended to look more flat.

  • PlanBFromOuterSpace

    This discussion has reminded me of something from a couple of years back.  Like your Olympic hero, I hail from the Pittsburgh area, which a couple of years ago played host to the NHL Winter Classic, which is the one game a year where they play outdoors in a big football stadium or something.  HBO ran an excellent documentary series leading up to the game that made it look pretty awesome.  I’m not a hockey fan, but it was so well put-together and was a really interesting watch, which I wasn’t expecting, because HBO had never done anything about hockey.  They made it look like the Super Bowl, like it was going to be the most important game ever played.

    Anyway, game time rolls around, and as always, western Pennsylvania weather can’t be trusted.  It was unseasonably warm for New Year’s (I think it had been in the 50’s at one point), and they had problems getting the ice right.  This game was going to be a pretty big deal for the NHL, as hockey has been a distant fourth place (if that) behind football, baseball, and basketball in popularity in this country, but they managed to make their game look like complete shit to what was probably going to be the most casually watched game of the year.  The rink was set up on the field, but there was no actual seating around it, as the area was all media, production people, officials, etc., and they shot the thing just like they would a football game, but unlike football, the action is completely grounded.  The stands were packed, but the television audience never got to see that, because there weren’t any wider shots.  They may have had views from the nosebleeds when they cut to commercials and showed the score.  On top of the venue looking not the least bit impressive (which is a shame, because it’s a really good-looking stadium), the ice looked like shit, and the players were clearly holding back and not going full-speed like they normally would.  If that wasn’t enough, the announcers kept talking about how this was an incredible event while at the same time contradicting themselves and saying that the game was essentially worthless, that the players weren’t going to risk life and limb because the game was only worth 2 points.  A few days later, on the HBO show, they would paint a more favorable picture of the game.

    As someone that doesn’t ordinarily watch hockey, this made me not care whether I ever saw another hockey game again.  HBO, who really have nothing to gain or lose by covering the build-up to this game, sold the shit out of it for me.  The NHL production team, who has EVERYTHING at stake in the matter, made it look and sound like a joke.  If the NHL was a wrestling promotion, it would be WCW towards the end…or TNA right now.

  • Maturedsinner

    Kinda reminds you nowadays how instead of just posting shots of packed arenas, WWE also makes up stupid trivia about ratings and social media activity to make themselves seem bigger than they are.

    • UMO Executive

       When has Vince not oversold the product I mean just look at the way they promoted WWE 12

      A game so real that the Divas don’t bleed, wrestlers wear the exact same outfits all the time, and the commentary isn’t clearly shallow.

  • nwa88

    Cool! This was from my post.

    WCW just didn’t shoot their crowds correctly in general — they’d always just pan down from the upperdeck.  If we’d been in the widescreen TV era in 1998, it might have actually worked, but in days when TVs were closer to square in shape, this is basically the photographic equivalent of a pan-scan job with the WCW image basically having a cropped 4:3 frame ratio and the WWF crowd framed for 16:9.

    To be fair WCW didn’t always do it so poorly, there are a handful of PPVs where they used better angles.  For the same token, the WWE has at times forgot how to do it right themselves — usually because their arenas are often too dark (a stylistic choice, much like the Nitro color scheme) or way overlit, which limits the visibility of the crowd.

    • PlanBFromOuterSpace

      On one hand, it seems like it would make sense to make the PPVs look different since they’re supposed to be more important, but then that also falls into the “people that were going to watch it anyway” category, so it wasn’t winning anyone over that HADN’T already shelled out the 40 bucks or whatever.

      Anyway, I don’t think you riled anyone up really.  Maffew himself pointed out that the one dude was a bit of a troll.

      • PlanBFromOuterSpace

         Well, not troll.  Gimmick poster, whatever that means.

      • nwa88

        True! 

        I used the examples I did because both events took place in the same exact arena and in the same time frame just to make the visual impact more powerful, but it was an ongoing issue for WCW for most of their existence on all of their productions, whether they be PPV or regular TV — whether their crowds were small or large, they pretty much shot them the same way for each show.

  • Lil Jimmy

    lol just randomly colecet two screen shots, one obviously more flattering than the other, what a retarded observation 

    • nwa88

      I agree that assembling this could be used to make a disingenuous point — but that was not my intention in creating it.

      I don’t know that I agree with the idea that WCW’s production team was “unable or unqualified” but the observation was that the WWF often paid attention to this, where WCW for whatever reason often missed it.  The WWF often used shots like this to maximize your perception of the crowd size in their productions, especially up till about 1999, where WCW almost never did.

      • PlanBFromOuterSpace

         It’s kind of a little backwards, but I’m not as astounded by how big the crowd looks so much as I am by how LITTLE the ring looks in comparison.  I’ve always thought that that gives more of a sense of how impressive the scale is.  The WWF view there looks much grander, like the closest you can get to an aerial shot while still being in an enclosed venue.

        • nwa88

          Good point — the high mounted camera shots definitely give you that impression.  Not sure why the WWE does it so much less now — I imagine it’s because the way the stage is setup.

  • Jeff Harvey

    one MAJOR difference is that the WWF crowds paid to get in and WCW crowds (majority of them) got in free

    • nwa88

      This is not true at all.  While WCW definitely had lean periods where they gave tickets away freely, they were extremely hot for several years in terms of ticket sales, surpassing the WWF in average gate and attendance plus setting many records especially for first day ticket sales.  That was certainly the case when this picture was taken.

      On a side note, the WWF was not immune to giving away tickets for major events either in their darker days — they gave away over 12,000 tickets for Royal Rumble 1997 and even more than that for WrestleMania 8.

  • Xgugo91x

    I was just thinking myself about how someone’s TV perception of how good the wrestling action is is very influenced by the amount of people the watcher sees reacting at the development of the match. In my opinion Wrestlemania’s big secret is that the event on TV looks like (and for sure looked like and maybe also was at some point) the hugest 1-night a year entertainment event of the world and ever imaginable. I am not that sensitive of a guy but really man, if I try to remember how I felt watching some of the craziest WM moments…

    oh yeah, by the way, is WWE’s production value over the years that ensures them more pro wrestling fans than any other company: I may not choose to watch CHIKARA and stay to WWE’s “crap” because I live on the other side of the world and the whole thing simply looks to more important for pro-wrestling than a fantastic wrestling event that might have 500 people making some noise…i’m not gonna look for that on the internet, if WWE airs on Sky TV in Italy I’ll just sit on my couch, drink some beer, buy their PPVs and fuck the indies. In fact not only do I do that, but the only wrestling thing I watch on the internet is TNA. And Botchamania. I almost feel bad now.

  • Dasyati

    CZW sells about 15K tickets per show on average, but they seat everybody behind the hard camera.

  • how the hell are you not qualified enough to Zoom the fuck out?

  • Rogerbutt90

    I always thought it was strange how insanely bright WCW lit the ring and not the audience. But don’t forget, when WCW rebooted, it introduced a lot of new methods the WWF/E would later copy. For example, lighting the audience in colors, and giant beams of lights, which appears to now be a WWE staple.

    I also think it comes down to what cameras and lenses the WCW guys were using. The WWE always made the smallest arenas look huge, and I’m fairly certain that had to do with the lenses focal length.

    WCW always did huge panning shots when there was an audience. Except they were never well lit. How many times do you remember a WCW match starting with the spotlights spinning around everywhere while they panned the dimly lit arena?

    All in all, I think the differences in production had to do with the greenness of the WCW guys. Look at the Nitro and Goldberg pyros. Every single version of Nitro had inconsistent and boring pyro and Goldberg rarely came out to the same pyro. WCW brought in guys from television production. WWF honed their craft.

    • nwa88

      Agreed — although I should point out, WCW actually lit their arenas much better at various earlier points, so the choice to light it more dimly could also be a stylistic choice and not necessarily an oversight.  Nitro was set in very dark colors in general compared to earlier WCW programming, while the WWF was always very bright in comparison.

      Yeah the WCW reboot actually brought some better camera angles for showing off the crowd at times, but of course by then the crowds were much smaller and less impressive on camera.