In an interview with Rolling Stone, Paul ‘Triple H’ Levesque promoted the upcoming 25th Anniversary of RAW by answering a host of questions surrounding the event.
The Game started off by describing the palpable energy that is shared between the fans, talent, and management in the WWE Universe. He described the awe that is experienced when thinking about the longevity and consistency of RAW over 25 years, especially when reminiscing about the first episode which he watched from his home in 1993.
When asked about managing expectations of the fans and talent, Levesque revealed the secret sauce to RAW’s success. He explained that the show has always been made to meet the expectations of the fanbase, encouraging and including them to be part of what is happening.
However, Triple H also described the difficulties that he faced when arranging the episode that has to celebrate 25 years of coverage.
The first problem is trying to fit everything into a 3 hour show:
“When you take 25 years of memorable moments and characters, trying to boil that down to a three-hour Raw episode being simulcast and in two places, how do you whittle that down to certain people and times and events?”
It’s not physically possible to celebrate everything and everyone in a 3 hour show, but social media and YouTube can be used to help with this issue, as shown by this top 10 list of RAW’s most extreme moments:
The second difficulty that The Game will have to deal with, is remembering that the world keeps on spinning. Even after the 25th Anniversary episode of RAW, he won’t be given a chance to relax. Levesque described how Vince McMahon took his headset off at the end of last year’s WrestleMania, and was immediately handed the script for the following night on RAW; but at the same time, The Game highlighted the importance of celebrating the next 25 years as well.
The third, and most interesting, issue that Triple H discussed was not being able to include those who had passed on or those who weren’t able to attend. While Levesque shows sadness towards those who are no longer here, he emphasized the importance of celebrating the living and the now, as well as repeating the impossibility of including everyone in the show.
“I wish they were, but it’s been 25 years, so people who had a big contribution unfortunately are no longer here. But no different than anything else in life, the celebration is for living and now. It’s the excitement for what the people who are here now have accomplished. It doesn’t mean that the other people didn’t contribute in dramatic ways. Again, 25 years, we’re gonna miss stuff, and I wish everybody could participate in it and celebrate with us, but it just can’t be.”
The more I read the last quote above, the more I question how controversial this statement could be. It appears like a blanket policy that is being used so that WWE doesn’t celebrate anyone who has passed away, which means they miss out big names from RAW’s history. However, this also allows WWE to steer clear of controversial names that they’ve hidden from the Network too. It seems a shame, and a little disrespectful, not to have some form of montage that celebrates moments from those passed on, but I can understand their reluctance to do so – even if I don’t necessarily agree with it.