How Scripted Are Interviews?, Booking Dolph Ziggler, Velvet Sky In TNA, Comparing Ryback To Sheamus

The following is today's edition of Ask WNW. Ask WNW is the most popular feature on the website where Richard Gray answers four questions daily, Monday through Friday. To submit your question for the next installment of Ask WNW, click here.
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When a WWE worker makes a non-wrestling appearance (e.g. autograph signing, media appearances, etc.) does the company instruct them to appear in or out of character?

WWE workers have a lot of freedom in media interviews but there are directives that come down from the office. Obviously the company doesn't want stars leaking storylines and generally speaking, they want the focal point of the interview to promote the product. We've seen it all - from Randy Orton completely shooting on Kelly Kelly to Sheamus constantly remaining in-character during media appearances. John Cena is known for focusing on the product in-character and is seen as the best promotional mouthpiece they have. Speaking from experience, when I've done interviews with workers alongside radio anchors, the radio station has met with company officials to let them know to keep it clean. My biggest pet peeve with interviews (and why I don't do many of them) is workers using them to put themselves over rather than actually answering the questions. Kind of like what we saw with the Presidential debate on Tuesday night, where the candidates would be asked a question, but skirt around it to get to their approved campaign rhetoric.

What are the creative plans for Dolph Ziggler? It seems since winning the Money in the Bank briefcase, he's been forgotten.

Dolph Ziggler gets Ryback after beating Zack Ryder on this week's WWE Main Event. I hate the way he is being booked, especially in the match with David Otunga against Ryback on this week's Raw. Ziggler's in-ring work has been as good as anyone in the company and it's unfortunate to see him being used to put Ryback over. I'm hoping WWE wants him "under the radar" before surprising the audience by "cashing in" his Money in the Bank briefcase.

What's the latest on Velvet Sky?

As we noted on Sunday, Velvet Sky is believed to be close to agreeing to a new contract with TNA Wrestling. The company worked hard to keep her from walking this summer and it appears they are close to getting a deal done.

I've read that you (along with others) feel WWE is making a mistake pushing Ryback in the main event for the WWE Championship this soon. But didn't WWE do the same thing with Sheamus? My question is if it worked for him then why don't you believe that it could work with Ryback as well?

I am diametrically opposed to the notion that Sheamus over John Cena for the WWE Championship at WWE TLC in December 2009 worked. Sheamus ended up developing into a main event talent but his title win was one of the most underwhelming in WWE history. The move received positive marks because it was over John Cena but I didn't like it. I'm all for the element of surprise but strapping an unproven worker is a risky proposition that I'm not sure the reward outweighs the risk. I didn't buy Ryback at all when he debuted but the character has grown on me as he "turns the corner" in terms of getting over. However, to take him from working indy call-ins to the WWE Champion and expecting the audience to be interested, seems a bit much. The gimmick needs more time and Ryback needs more seasoning. Neither of which are going to happen as Vince is hell bound on pushing him at the top but I fear the long-term outlook is not being considered.

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