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WWE responds to ‘Tea Party’ bashing complaints



The WWE responded to right-wing criticism that the Zeb and Jack Swagger storyline is a slam against the conservative Tea Party movement, and indicated it has no intention of reining in the perceived partisanship.

Conservative site Breitbart.com noted:

Over the past two weeks Jack Swagger and his “great American” manager Zeb Colter into the ring to lecture the crowd on “true patriotism,” which apparently means immigrant-bashing and veiled racism of the pair “talking about freeloading immigrants and welfare recipients in front of the Gadsden flag, which has become symbolic of the Tea Party.”

One video also has Colter delivering a “state of the union” address behind a podium emblazoned with, “Don’t tread on me,” which has become a popular Tea Party slogan.

The website Twitchy, run by conservative columnist Michelle Malkin, also did its part to push the narrative that the WWE was engaging in partisan propaganda by insinuating a couple of its villains are Tea Partiers.

The WWE didn’t confirm or deny that the characters represent the Tea Party, only that the storyline represented “current events.” Nor did it indicate a willingness to alter its scripts based on partisan complaints.

Brian Flinn, WWE’s senior vp of marketing and communications said:

“WWE has a long history of creating fictional characters that serve as either protagonists or antagonists, no different than other television shows or feature films. To create compelling and relevant content for our audience, it is important to incorporate current events into our storylines,”

“WWE is creating drama centered on a topical subject that has varying points of view to develop a rivalry between two characters. This storyline in no way represents WWE’s political point of view. One should not confuse WWE’s storytelling with what WWE stands for, similar to other entertainment companies such as Warner Brothers, Universal Studios or Viacom.”

Credit: The Hollywood Reporter


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19 Responses

  1. -J- says:

    lol so the group they want to affiliate with swagger, rejects them because its an unflattering portrayal? Ironic.

  2. motorhead says:

    yet the right keeps quiet when wwe pushes a jihadist heel in hassan or an iraqi sympathizer in sgt slaughter. I think it’s strange that most uninformed critics view the wwe as liberal with a liberal fanbase. Truth is the wwe and vince have always been right-leaning going back as far as billy graham. When hogan is mr usa and “fighting for your rights” the right loves the wwe. They, wwe, are pro military bordering on hawks and have in the past kissed up to repub presidents while mocking dem presidents. The left never said a word when “bill clinton” was at wm x, or how they portrayed bubba as a moron womanizer. The right lives in a bubble with its fingers in its ears. Any word against them is viewed as sin. I personally think jbl was far worse in the same role. And by that i mean better at it. These people made their bed now refuse to even enter the bedroom. Remember the flack wwe got when they put navy or national guard promos on their dvds that couldn’t be skipped? That at the height of iraq and afghanistan.

  3. Dave K says:

    I thought Linda M. was a Republican. That being said, they are now portraying a heel as being aligned with the Tea Party and if it’s anything like the Republican establishment in real life, the Republicans thumb their elder statesman nose at the Tea Party. But what makes it worse is the negative commentary made by Cole & King, making it sound as if they are 180 degrees of the position held by Swagger. I know it’s all an act, to a point, but they do interject personal feelings into their storylines time to time.

  4. Cutting Edge says:

    Just another example of people that have no idea that we all know this is a TV show. People truly believe we wrestling fans believe this stuff is 100% real and are quick to bash us for it, but we don’t. We know it’s scripted. But they don’t know that we know. They think we’re incompetent.

  5. Boogeyman says:

    Ahhhh social idiots. It’s fake. Wrestlings fake. It’s a story. Get over it

  6. Rusty Shackleford says:

    Uh, pretty sure that flag and slogan have been around longer than the Tea Party- by like 250 years. Get over it. Some of their crazies do enough alone to make the whole movement look bad- they don’t need help from scripted television.

  7. mackdeezy says:

    Politically correctness…. more of a reason to want to get off this planet

  8. Dustin says:

    I bet this is Vince and Linda’s way of getting back at the Tea Party. They did cost her a Senate seat.

  9. killpg says:

    pissed off policturds? i approve lol(note) to cover my ass i frown on ALL politcs. cuz in one way or another they promote unjust judgement. that being said, this is fn funny lol

  10. StunningSteve says:

    The Tea Party needs to worry more about its actual members doing damage than some fictional characters.

  11. What? says:

    How did the Tea Party cost Linda a Senate seat? She won the Republican nomination, then lost the general election in heavily Democratic Connecticut. That’s been happening to Republicans in New England since way before the Tea Party came on the scene.

  12. Scott says:

    The tea party is nothing more than a bunch of (usually) racist morons who think anything to the right is not right enough.

    Know your role and shut your mouths!

  13. Ryno says:

    WE. THE PEOPLE

  14. bah says:

    What What? said. The Tea Party is irrelevant in Connecticut. This has nothing to with Linda McMahon’s pursuit of a Senate seat.

  15. DBRude says:

    I hope this angle doesn’t ruin Jack’s/Jake’s career.

  16. kidsampson says:

    This angle has the potential to really elevate Swagger into the main event. It’s relevant, divisive, and it elicits attention from those outside the wrestling arena and general audience. One of the successes of the Attitude era was that the WWE was willing to take chances and push the envelope. It also based itself in reality and leveraged that to its advantage. If they fully commit themselves to this storyline, and Swagger fully commits to his character, this could be a huge boost.

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