18 Ups & 15 Downs For WWE In 2023

One of WWE's best calendar years in a generation, with some bumps in the road.

Judgment Day WWE

There is no denying that WWE is hotter now than it has been in years, maybe even a decade or two. They regularly sell out arenas, put on solid-to-excellent PLEs, and have maximized mainstream stars in a way not seen in some time.

Numerous characters have personally connected with fans and become central components of the company’s plans. Storylines finally (for the most part) follow linear booking, something that for the longest time was a bug, not a feature of WWE. Fans are more rewarded for their investment in characters and the product than at any point in the recent past.

At the same time, problems continue to persist for the sports entertainment leader. They struggle to book the women’s title pictures consistently well. Their over-reliance on the melodrama of the Bloodline and the desire to replicate it has infected several factions on the roster. Roman Reigns is less visible than Brock Lesnar ever was as world champion and yet is celebrated like the modern-day Bruno Sammartino.

While Triple H deserves a ton of praise for his booking – solid if unspectacular at times – WWE also needs to be judged more critically, and not with the kid gloves it has been for years due to Vince McMahon’s embarrassing last few years at the helm.

This review largely focuses on broader themes than just individual moments. Otherwise, it could run on for days. In some cases, there’s good and bad to a character/act/angle, and that will be reflected in the lists. Overall, this was an “up” year for WWE, and the company and its fans should be really proud, but there always is room for improvement.

Let’s get to it…

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Scott is a former journalist and longtime wrestling fan who was smart enough to abandon WCW during the Monday Night Wars the same time as the Radicalz. He fortunately became a fan in time for WrestleMania III and came back as a fan after a long high school hiatus before WM XIV. Monday nights in the Carlson household are reserved for viewing Raw -- for better or worse.