Minutes to Bell Time

100 Things WWE Fans Should Know and Do

My Take: 100 Things WWE Fans Should Know and Do Before They Die

While not part of Bryan Alvarez’s list, I think reading this book is something every WWE fan should know and do. I don’t say that jokingly. Totally Unauthorized 100 Things WWE Fans Should Know and Do Before They Die (100 Things) provides a set of guideposts for anyone wanting to explore WWE’s history. Alvarez provides 50 people and 29 topics to know and 21 things to do. That makes it a little light on things to do, but you walk away from the book 79% done. Then comes the task of crossing out the last 21 things.

Anything Missing

I wanted to come up with a list of things Alvarez missed, but I couldn’t. He covered a lot of ground with “Watch Every WrestleMania” and “Watch Every Royal Rumble.” I might add in “Watch Every Survivor Series” and “Watch Every SummerSlam,” but those just aren’t as critical. He included an entry for NXT because you need to know about the brand. “Watch Every NXT TakeOver” is my goal for 2020, but not in “100 Things.”

Is the Book Already Outdated?

It strikes me how quickly 100 Things has become dated. That’s not a criticism of the book, but just a point at how fast the wrestling business changes. For instance, the four page entry on the Chris Benoit tragedy was both factual and personal, but the new Viceland documentary provides personal accounts from the people that best knew Eddie Guerrero and Chris Benoit. While interesting and complete as written, today Alvarez could title the entry “Watch the Viceland Documentary on Chris Benoit.” The recent documentary is the highest rated show in the history of the television station. While that doesn’t by itself make it a must do item, it does make it relevant to the WWE fan. At a minimum, even if it wouldn’t change his entry that much, Alvarez could have sourced quotes from the documentary. Maybe he wouldn’t use the Viceland product at all, but it’s something that exists today that didn’t when he wrote the book in 2019. I think things like this will always come up, which just means a second edition sometime down the road will be worthwhile.

How Did I Do?

I crossed off 15 of the 21 things to do. My last six things require me to read 2 books, travel for 3 events, and sit in the front row.

Final Thoughts

100 Things should provide new WWE Fans with a list to keep them busy for a year or more. As someone who has followed WWE closely for 30+ years, I’m not sure I needed this book as much as newer fans. My main points of interest related to the pre-WrestleMania period. For WWE fans that never experienced the 80’s and 90’s, you really need this book to understand the origins of the current WWE company and product. Despite not needing the book, I still enjoyed the nostalgia trip and continue to find the book useful in different ways (like citations and quotes for this website). I wish books of similar quality would exist for New Japan, AAA, CMLL, ROH, NWA, and a thousand other promotions.

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