Are Women Equal to Men in the WWE in 2018?

The women’s revolution has dominated the world of professional wrestling. The past five years have seen a rise in women’s wrestling with the WWE listening to fans and giving its female talent the exposure the division has always deserved. So far, historic moments and matches have taken place to showcase just how much progress the WWE has made with its women’s division including firsts such as a Royal Rumble Match, Money in the Bank, Hell in a Cell, and Elimination chamber as well as female talent main eventing two pay per views and occasional episodes of RAW and Smackdown LIVE. NXT continues to raise the bar and while the division isn’t as strong as it was when the developmental territory originally sparked the revolution it remains an excellent place to witness fantastic women’s wrestling and storylines. However, when we take a deeper look into the division and how far things have come it’s evident that in actual fact there is still a lot of work to be done and in order for women to truly be equal to men in this world, the WWE has a great deal to focus on.

With Wrestlemania season live and active we have to take a look at the biggest event on the Wrestling calendar and see how that has played into this women’s revolution. It was only two years ago that fans got to see a huge shift in the way women were booked for WrestleMania. Becky Lynch, Sasha Banks, and Charlotte squared off in a triple threat match for the women’s Championship in a bout which, by many, was considered to be one of, if not, the best match of the night. It was a far cry away from what we had previously seen from the division at previous Mania events, however, twelve months later and it appeared as though we had taken a massive step back. Two women’s matches were booked for the show but with only seventeen minutes given to the entire division, it was evident that we were not where we should be in terms of this revolution. Mania is a huge event, it’s a long show with plenty of time to fit in at least two lengthy women’s matches. Now, this year the female talent has been given more of a push during the run-up of WrestleMania. A Royal Rumble and Elimination Chamber match have made the women feel equal to the men in the build to the biggest show of the year, however, if seventeen minutes for entire division is what we see again this year then efforts would have been wasted and once again we would have seen just how far away we are from true equality amongst men and women In the WWE.

Keeping on the theme of time, this remains a huge issue amongst the division. Again, I will highlight the fact that we have come a long way. Sasha Banks vs Asuka is a prime example of the change we have seen in how well women are booked for shows like RAW, however, this kind of booking isn’t something we see regularly. On a weekly basis, we can expect very short matches under ten minutes added to the RAW and Smackdown LIVE shows and often times even on pay per view. Yes, we are seeing more segments and better storylines but if these big matches that entertain us and have fans up on their feet happen once in a blue moon isn’t that sign that the revolution still has a long way to go? We are not at that stage we expect good quality matches booked every week because we as fans know it’s extremely unlikely. Viewers know we are going to see the female talent on our screen but how long the in-ring time is something that continues to be an issue. If you want to build an impressive, entertaining division you do need to provide those lengthy matches.

Girls like Mandy Rose, Sonya Deville, Dana Brooke, and Bayley can really benefit from those longer matches to show how far they have come and tell their story. It’s extremely difficult to get behind a character, a story, and a superstar without weekly good quality in-ring work. Let these women have strong matches and an even bigger change will be felt in the division.

Live events. The WWE do host plenty of shows that are not aired on TV or the WWE Network and these, of course, are the live events. While this may not seem like an important part of moving the revolution forward its been highlighted as just that. Fans and superstars have commented on how poorly booked female talent is for these events it’s something that in the coming years we must see a change in. Women have not yet main evented a live event despite such big names and potential on the roster. Often times we see tag team matches added to the card instead of high-stakes, must-see bouts that will draw in fans. This is at the moment a silent issue in the WWE. It’s not something that Is addressed often which could be a problem. If it’s not being greatly spoken about the chances of a change are much slimmer. However, the bigger the female division grows to become and the shift we see in control backstage I do believe this is an area we will see change however at a slightly slower pace.

And the final topic we are going to be addressing is Smackdown LIVE. While Monday Night RAW still has a long way to go before we start feeling as though the revolution has gone to the next level, the blue brand is much further behind. The roster is evidently a lot smaller and the women’s division has felt the blunt end of that fact. Because of the lack of names we’re seeing very weak and repetitive storylines and the division does feel very empty. There’s also a very clear difference in how the female talent is managed on the blue brand in comparison to what we see on Monday nights. Over the coming months, we should hopefully see new names added, another superstar shake up and an even bigger focus on the women’s division over on Smackdown LIVE and those moves alone are brilliant next steps in sorting out this issue.

To round things up, there is simply no denying just how far women’s wrestling has come in30 the WWE over the past five years. The revolution has changed the future for women to follow some of the all-time greats but as we have pointed out today there is still a lot of work to be done. There is still a demand for longer matches, better quality storyline’s, and an even bigger division. We are edging closer to a wrestling world where men and women are equal and I predict that in another five years’ time changes will be far greater.