We’re getting closer to finally getting eyes on the long-awaited Mae Young Classic (MYC), WWE Network’s women’s wrestling tournament show. The majority of it was filmed last month, but we have to wait until Monday, Aug. 28 for the first four episodes to hit our screens - and Sunday, Aug. 20 for the Corey Graves and Lita hosted Bracketology special which will air after SummerSlam.
But WWE isn’t waiting for that preview to air to start getting us hyped, and the early promotional material they’re releasing is giving us a lot of insight into what to expect, at least in terms of presentation.
And so far, it looks a lot like 2016’s Cruiserweight Classic (CWC).
That should be good news for viewers. The focus on competition and the personal journeys of the competitors was a widely praised element of the CWC, and really helped set it apart from most WWE programming.
From the gallery on WWE.com of entrant portraits with the flag of the country they’ll represent as a backdrop from which we took our main page image of Toni Storm, to the short videos that have been released on that site and YouTube, it’ll all feel familiar to fans who watched last Summer’s tournament.
All of the videos place an emphasis on introducing the wrestlers as people as much as performers, such as this look at women who have the business in their blood:
To this one about a woman who, along with WWE trainer Sara Amato and Shimmer founder Dave Prazak, could probably point to her work in the mid-Aughts as a true starting point of the “Women’s Revolution”:
Of course, the MYC won’t be angle-free. Just like the cruiserweights had Brian Kendrick’s “last shot” story, and planted a seed for #DIY’s break-up, you don’t need a marketing degree to know that Shayna Baszler and her Ronda Rousey connection are an important component of WWE’s marketing efforts for the Classic:
There are several others focusing on other entrants at the Mae Young Classic hub on the company website.
All told, it looks promising. The CWC was a critical success, and reportedly a commercial one, too. We’ll have to wait and see if the in-ring action can meet the high standards set by the sub-205 pound fellas, but they’re getting me excited to find out.
How are you feeling about the MYC at this point, Cagesiders?