The Royal Rumble, flawed history and all, is something that unites a fandom at constant odds with one another. No, that WALTER Vs. Joe Coffey match wasn't a merely flawed match. It was uneven well before the botches, you're not looking past the easy kick-out spots, and booking three NXT UK TakeOver cards per year isn't an achievement.
But the Rumble unites us; a mathematical formula for fun, drama, anticipation and surprises, daft comedy and the most serious storyline stakes imaginable, the hour-plus epic is invariably a spectacle. Even when it's misjudged, even when it actively strives to make us disavow our very fandom, it yields moments of magic - be they a cool, unique Kofi Kingston near-elimination, or a welcome face returning from a cherished yesteryear. On which other night of the year would we ever in loud voice count down with anticipation, knowing there is a high risk of King Corbin emerging from behind the curtain?
We all have regrets about the institution. For example: why do we look forward to it, why must we hurt ourselves when the previous decade yielded no less than six uninspiring winners?