04th Oct2019

WWE Network Original: ‘The Bump S01E01′ Review

by Chris Cummings

WWE-The-Bump-Logo

I’ve been clamouring for a talk-show style show in WWE for some time. A show like a late-night chat program where wrestlers are interviewed and the current product is discussed in a playfully casual manner. Finally, we’ve got just that. The Bump, which aired this week on the WWE Network, is hosted by WWE backstage announcer Kayla Braxton and a group of other analyst/comedian types who are from places like AfterBuzz TV. It is an hour-long show and feels organic, casual and fun, with Kayla and her new group chit-chatting about WWE, laughing about things, and talking with a handful of WWE talent either live in their cool-as-hell studio or over a live-stream.

The first episode saw an introduction to what exactly The Bump is, before we delved into a nice relaxed and silly (in a good way) interview with Seth “Freakin” Rollins, the WWE Universal Champ. This was a nice way to show off what they’re intending The Bump to be. It feels like a blend of Tuesday Night Titans from back in the 80s, Talking Smack from a few years ago, and a YouTube after-show program. I know little about the guys who were with Kayla for the show, of which there were a bunch, but they seemed to know the product, so that’s a good thing. I like hearing a varied perspective on things, and while the show sometimes sticks to kayfabe to some degree, it’s still interesting and a lot of fun.

I think this is the kind of program that has been missing from mid-week WWE programming. A show in which men and women from RAW, SmackDown and NXT brands can chat about their careers, upcoming matches, feuds they have going on, and all the while showing their personalities off to audiences who may not know them well enough yet, is valuable. We saw Seth Rolling here, as I said, as well as NXT Champion Adam Cole, who talked over a live feed and interacted with Seth, and then, after some take about the modern WWE product from Kayla and Company, we got another nice chilled stream-interview with Charlotte Flair, who discussed, among other things, her feelings about her father RIc having “one more match”, her match alongside Becky Lynch against Sasha Banks and Bayley, and Bayleys storyline infatuation with her as of late. It was kayfabe, it was funny and it was off-the-cuff, and it was a breath of fresh air.

That’s what The Bump truly felt like to me. A breath of fresh air in a landscape of programming that has bordered on stale for a number of years in many areas. Offering a new slick yet loungey format, a nice set, talkative and energetic hosts and a nice mix of interviewees, it started off very well. Sure, there were a few random bumps that need to be smoothed out, in terms of the hosts getting used to not talking over each other, but overall I found it to be a blast, and something I hope we see continue weekly for a long while.

The Bump is available now to stream on WWE Network.

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