It's coming. The news broke earlier this week that the WWE Network will arrive in the UK and Ireland from 19 January and will be available to us for £9.99 a month (€12.99 in Ireland) straight to your chosen device, on a no commitment basis just in time for the reliably brilliant Royal Rumble on 25 January. Similar to services such as Netflix, one just signs up through WWE.com and can then watch the network through various TV connected devices or Smart TVs.
Why should we be excited? Here's five simple reasons:
1) Its WWE wrestling, full time. Ever wanted to watch every Pay-Per-View WWE has ever produced, in order? (of course you have...) Well, we Brits will have access to the U.S. English language version of the Network which means we'll receive all 12 of WWE's annual Pay-per-view events live and at no additional cost. On top of that we'll get 24/7 scheduled programming and the most comprehensive video-on-demand library with 2,700 hours of content including every WWE, WCW and ECW pay-per-view. Imagine it, a Wrestlemania marathon.....
2) You can watch Total Divas. That's right. The Bella Twins, Natalya, Rosa Mendes and now the pride of Britain, Paige behind the scenes. Merging reality TV with sports entertainment intrigue, this is the show that helped us to see a whole other side of the WWE Universe. Want to know what John Cena's kitchen looks like? Want to know the backstage workings of the WWE? Total Divas is ever so watchable and even for those wrestling fans that don't enjoy reality TV, this may have you thinking again.
3) There's a weekly offering of Main Event. For the past couple of years, WWE has been filming this show which continues and broadens evolving storylines in the Raw and Smackdown shows. Those lucky enough to have seen Smackdown filmed in London or Liverpool in recent years will have seen, for example, Mark Henry taking on Cesaro or Dean Ambrose face Justin Gabriel. An additional weekly fix of WWE drama can never be a bad thing.
4) It will bring back amazing memories when you watch Legends' House. Fan of 'Rowdy' Roddy Piper? Hanker after Hacksaw Jim Duggan? Miss Mean Gene Okerlund? How would you like to see these icons thrown together in a Big Brother style environment? From what we've seen its wildly entertaining TV and worth the network fee alone. Whether it's Roddy Piper wondering through the desert or a big personal reveal by Pat Patterson, Legend's House has enough intrigue to keep you glued to the network.
5) One of the major drivers for our subscription is the access to NXT content. Unless you've been away for a long time, you'll know that NXT is WWE's developmental territory come explosive new brand. Fans of the current WWE product may know that Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose and Bray Wyatt amongst others made their way through the NXT system before debuting on the main roster. Hardened indie fans meanwhile, will get to see Adrian Neville, Sami Zayn, Finn Bailor and Kevin Owens in new surroundings as they work their way to the top. NXT is cutting edge entertainment that we want to see.
That's five simple reasons but there are more of course. It was on the WWE Network that fans were treated to a unique podcast in which 'Stone Cold' Steve Austin interviewed the company chairman, Vince MacMahon. There will also likely be new content in the future. Be it another series of 'Tough Enough' or an entirely new show, given WWE's focus on the network you can bet the content will stay fresh.
Above all else, joining the network enables you to stay informed. We have never shied away from saying we are fans of the WWE product. We thrive on talking about what's happening in WWE storylines, who's coming up and who is flying high. We're not alone either, there is an entire online community dedicated to talking about that very same subject. It's inevitable. Joining up means joining in and so as fans, we're going to join the network. We'll see you all at our house for that Wrestlemania marathon...
Visit WWE.com on January 19th 2015 to sign up.