2020 Preview & Notes: What's to Come, Expansion, Ideas and More | Smark Out Moment

2020 Preview & Notes: What's to Come, Expansion, Ideas and More

Posted by Anthony Mango Tuesday, December 31, 2019
Hey everybody, welcome to 2020! There will be plenty (ie, too many) "hindsight" jokes that I'll make this year, but before that happens, I'd like to take a look ahead at what's to come going forward.

Normally, I talk about all of these things on the Smark Out Moment Awards, as that's the end of the year recap, but I know some people aren't followers of the podcast and only digest the posts on the site. This is for you, essentially, as well as updates that I've thought about after recording the awards show.

Basically, I just want to fill you in on some changes that will happen on the site, my game plan for some content that I have planned already, ideas of what I'd like to expand on and so forth.

Before saying anything at all, I want to remind you to vote on the 2019 Fan Feedback Survey if you haven't already, so that I have as much data possible to be able to see how you think the site and podcast can improve. Some of that has been factored into these decisions, while others were ones I just had in mind all on my own.

Let's get started, in no particular order....

Darkcast

Starting in 2020, I'm hoping to do at least 1 special podcast per month, if not 2 or even 4 episodes, which will be Patreon-exclusive content. These will be called Darkcasts and the only way to listen to them will be if you've donated to the Darkcast tier on Patreon (or higher).

With the fluctuating YouTube algorithm and all the changes that have killed monetization on that platform, Smack Talk earns pennies every month and the Patreon is the best and pretty much only way to have any real support. As such, I'm trying to maximize its value.

I've decided to switch the Darkcast tier from the experimental $20 level and lower it to $10. It just seems more fair of a price point, in my mind. The $20 tier will be the fan vote concept wherein you can help pick which topics will be discussed on the Darkcast.

These will be more relaxed conversations and less rigid like the gimmicks of Superstar Scores, Call the Spot on the Card and so forth. They'll probably be sillier and may even involve me rambling like a lunatic after not sleeping enough. It's all experimental!

Heel and Face Turn Podcasts

You guys love the heel and face turns discussions, but I can't possibly dedicate a ton of time to that. I don't have the ability to keep posting the Turn Alert updates all the time like I used to, for instance.

But since you're so dedicated to that page, I'd like to find a way to utilize my time and give you what you want. Therefore, I'll be trying to lump this into my Darkcast material in some way, depending on the support you show.

If you donate and you really want it, maybe it can be a weekly podcast where I review everyone's turns. If not, maybe I'll just talk about it here and there. It all depends on how much support you show and how much you tell me you want something, and how many of you tell me you want it.

Monthly Quarterly Mailbags

I absolutely love doing the Mailbag Q&A. It's one of my favorite segments on the site, as it gives us a chance to talk about what you want to talk about, whether it's the current product, something other than what's going on now, or maybe even topics totally outside of professional wrestling.

However, there are some drawbacks. They don't perform all that well in terms of views, they often take lots of time to record and plenty of people have requested that we do more wrestling gimmicks, which we don't have time to do every month with so many pay-per-views going on.

As a compromise, we're going to test out switching these from every month to every quarter. There will be four per year — maybe five, if we can sneak an extra one in there — that will operate much in the same fashion as our current setup.

I currently have a Mailbag Priority tier up on Patreon for $25 that is another miniature Pick Your Poison type of incentive wherein if you want us to answer your questions in that particular month, rather than waiting, you can donate to that level. Also, I'll be trying to think of ways to interact with everyone here and there more on social media to answer some mailbag-esque questions at random times, particularly if it's something that would go by before the next edition.

For example, if you really want to know who I think the Royal Rumble winner will challenge at WrestleMania, we could answer that on the Quarter 1 Mailbag in January, but by the time Quarter 2 comes around, we'll already know that answer. If the Royal Rumble happens before the Quarter 1 Mailbag, we won't know the Royal Rumble winner, so it kind of can't happen. In that case, I'll answer it in some fashion on the website's predictions or on the podcast somewhere, or maybe even in a random tweet. I'll try my best.

Fanboys Anonymous

I really want to do more with Fanboys Anonymous and I see that many people still don't even know what it is. I assume you're not listening to the podcast, where I plug it every episode.

This is my geek culture site. If I'm going to talk about anything related to film, television, video games, comics, or anything else like that, you'll find it there. I mostly do movie reviews, but whenever I get a chance, I'll do commentary tracks, podcasts and articles on random stuff (like my Pokemon Generation 1 Reboot) and I desperately want to do more with the site.

So please, follow Fanboys on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and more. Donate to the Patreon if you'd be so kind. Pick up some merch on TeePublic and Redbubble and check out the podcasts and articles that I put up!

Merchandise Designs

Speaking of the merch shops, if you have any ideas of designs you'd like to see for Smark Out Moment (or Fanboys Anonymous or A Mango Tees), hit me up! Let me know! I'm not an artist at all but I can sometimes whip up something funny enough.

Sexiest Superstars Tournament

I'm so busy nowadays that I'm trying to figure out how I can best utilize my time, which means some sacrifices need to be made.

The Sexiest Superstars Tournament is NOT going away. However, the podcasts are going to be trimmed.

This year's tournament will not feature a weekly podcast breaking down each round from the 2 qualifying rounds through the 5 rounds of the tournament and then the finals recap. It might seem like it's only an hour per video, but that's 2 per week just to record, plus all the editing time for the audio, all the editing time for the video, all the templates on YouTube and elsewhere, the website posts, the graphics and more. Frankly, it's a TON of work and it was incredibly tough to do this year, especially when there are sometimes two pay-per-views any of those weeks.

Also...I just don't feel comfortable anymore having that many hours of content dedicated to criticizing everyone's looks. Times have changed and it's just coming across more crass now than I'd like. I feel like it still has value and humor to the discussion, but once we review the same people here and there, we keep repeating ourselves.

Instead, what I'm thinking we'll do is have a general preview of the tournament before it begins, where we'll give our thoughts on some of our favorites to win and whatnot. Then, the tournament will start and run its course the way we've been doing it on the site (preliminary qualifying round, entry qualifying round, rounds 1-5 and a winner reveal for both the men's and women's brackets). Then, when we reveal the winner, we'll do a comprehensive recap of the whole tournament that will be a longer podcast than normal. We might also do a quick recap on the Hot Tags or something each week, if we feel the urge to talk about the tournament as it's progressing.

There may even be some other tweaks, but I haven't decided on that and I won't even be thinking much about it until at least April, if not May.

If you guys desperately want this to continue the way it is, with more podcasts, maybe that will pop back up as part of a Patreon-exclusive incentive in some fashion.

Champsgiving

Speaking of tournaments, I feel like we've tried the "Best ___ Champion of All Time" concept enough now that I have to throw in the towel. There are just far too many people who seemingly do not want to vote on that type of a concept and keep it strictly to each person's title reigns. They keep voting based on that superstar's entire careers, which defeats the purpose.

This year, Champsgiving will be different. I'm continually debating about two different ideas:

a) Best Title Gimmick Concepts (as in, which is better, the Cruiserweight title, the TV title, the 24/7 title, the Hardcore title, etc)
b) Best ___ Belt Design (as in, Best WWE Championship Belt Design)

I haven't decided which one will be better, but I'm leaning more towards option A.

Wednesday Night War

Watching NXT and AEW Dynamite back to back every Wednesday, doing coverage for multiple sites, and then trying to review and compare the two against each other and have that all up asap is exhausting and has really killed my interest in that time of the week.

Wednesday Night War as a variation of Battle of the Brands may still continue, but it may not. It will all depend on whether or not I can find someone else to take on the responsibility.

Tier List Rankings

People have loved tier lists in 2019. I'm way behind the ball on it, but I'd like to start posting some of my own for Smark Out Moment in 2020. I have some graphics sorted out already and whenever I get a chance to figure out a template of how to post these types of things, I'll start putting them out from time to time.

It'll be an extra feature of sorts that I do on a whim and is entirely just my own opinion, rather than trying to have a debate with anyone else about the best something or other.

These should be relatively easy to do once the setup is complete, and I might find myself compelled at random to post something like tier list of current tag teams on WWE's roster or former intercontinental champions or whatever else I get the inspiration to do.

Bringing Back More Segments

By cutting a bunch of mailbags for the year, we'll hopefully have more time to do some of the segments you guys have been missing out on.

This includes Mount Rushmore, Fannounce Table, Superstar Scores (which we need to do a 25th reformatting of old scores), Wrestling with the Past, and more.

We want to Play the Game more often. We'd like to bring back Top Rope Lists and figure out a way to do Sporcle quizzes together, if possible. Maybe we can retool Belt or Bury, Heel or Face, Finisher vs Finisher or anything else like that and figure out a way to make those interesting.

Plus, who knows what other ideas we'll think of that we'll debut!

Add More AEW Stuff!!!

I know! I know! I'm trying to get to it. It's a lot to handle just the WWE content and AEW is only going to get bigger.

I know you want me to make a Depth Chart / Hierarchy page for AEW, but with the Power Rankings being such a big deal there, it almost defeats the purpose. They have win-loss records and I'd have to adjust it way too often for little nitpicks.

Anything that is WWE-specific right now, people want to see an AEW equivalent to it, including the end of the year awards. It's just too much to handle and until I get enough Patreon support to be able to take time away from some of my freelance work and put more into Smark Out Moment, it will have to be on the backburner until manageable - but, rest assured, I'm trying.

Anything Else?

To be honest, I have no idea! I'm sure I'll think of plenty of other things that will change throughout the year either by choice or by force. You never know how the landscape will be altered just from WWE and AEW, let alone my response to anything going on.

Hell, Smark Out Moment can blow up and become a huge machine with tons of backing and lots of expansion or it can blow up in a bad way and disappear entirely. Obviously, I'm hoping for the former.

Just stay tuned, check out The Mega Maniacs on Facebook if you're not already in that group (as I'll often post quick things there), and keep listening to Smack Talk for anything new that might be around the corner.

Thank you all for all of your support in any way you help this site grow. Let's make 2020 a great one!

AUTHOR OF THIS POST: ANTHONY MANGO

Tony Mango is the founder, editor-in-chief, head writer, host of Smack Talk, and much more for Smark Out Moment as well as all branches under A Mango Tree including Fanboys Anonymous. He is a pundit, creative director/consultant, media manager and more. You can follow him on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

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