NBC Universal recently acquired the rights to stream the decades-long catalog from the popular wrestling network WWE. That story in itself wouldn’t be much of a news story. However, being 2021 and the fact that every media company is obsessed with race, there is another angle.
To make sure not one second of possibly offensive content hits their streaming service, NBC has chosen to carefully review all 17,000 hours of footage to look for possible racist overtones or insensitive comments.
If you know anything about professional wrestling or the WWE, you are probably aware that the skits and dialogue can be brash at times. That’s part of the reason fans enjoy it. However, the WWE is essentially family programming with millions of kids having grown up watching and enjoying it, often times along with their parents.
Not to mention, the WWE has a very diverse fan base. Wrestling is very popular with black and Latino viewers and has been for decades according to the ratings demographics. So the WWE is hardly a place of “white privilege”.
However, NBC has already deemed two segments as simply too distasteful for modern viewers.
One clip, from the 90’s shows wrestler Roddey Piper with half his face painted black and proclaiming that what’s on the inside that counts when judging a person.
A second clip has CEO Vince McMahon uttering the n-word as he plays a villain character along with black wrestler Booker T.
Of course, these two incidents were fine when they aired, and nobody in the black community was offended. But NBC feels that their viewers are far too sensitive now and couldn’t handle such language or imagery. So they have deleted these two scenes.
The only question is, what scenes will be next? Is the Iron Sheik racist? Is Hulk Hogan a symbol of white privilege. Have there been enough minority champions to satisfy the woke quotas?
Perhaps after NBC finishes their 17,000 hour curation of past WWE content, they can supply us with the answer to these questions.