Drew McIntyre has discussed the ThunderDome Era in WWE saying that when it’s all said and done, fans will have a deeper understanding of some of WWE’s characters because of it.
The WWE ThunderDome has housed the majority of Raw and SmackDown programming since the COVID-19 pandemic shut down live events with crowds. Housed first at the Amway Center followed by Tropicana Field and finally, the Yuengling Center in Tampa, the ThunderDome has seen fans shown surrounding the ring on large screens as they watch the action at home.
WrestleMania 37 at the Raymond James Stadium was the first time over a year WWE had fans back live. Over 25,000 of them attended both nights of WrestleMania weekend in April.
Speaking to the Dallas Morning News, Drew McIntyre discussed the ThunderDome Era and how he has tried to embrace it:
“I watched a few of our talent come out and they were looking at imaginary people and I was like, ‘Oh, this is cringeworthy’. If it’s cringeworthy for me, there’s probably a disconnect with our fans. I was very adamant about walking out and embracing what was around me. I would mess around the commentators, if the camera got too close, I’d shake it around – I kept trying different things.”
“When it came to the interviews themselves, obviously we generally have 20,000 people screaming over top of you and you have to raise your voice and a lot of them are shouting because you are trying to hear yourself over the crowd and you’re participating with the crowd and going with what they’re giving you. Sometimes, they’re giving you the ‘What’ treatment and trying to entertain themselves when you’re talking so you have to deviate from the script. Without fans, it’s just silence and it makes things very different. I saw it as an opportunity. If you know who you are and you know your character, you had a chance to develop that character on such a deeper level and add layers. You can speak without having to raise your voice.”
According to McIntyre, those layers will help fans understand more about each character when they’re back in regular attendance at shows:
“A lot of people really maximized their minutes and developed their character. When we’re back in front of live fans on a regular basis, I think the fans are going to understand these characters on a deeper level than they would have if we didn’t have this period.”
WWE has announced that they are recommencing their touring schedule in July beginning in Texas. The Money In The Bank pay-per-view will be held on the 18th of July in Fort Worth and fans will be back to see all the action.