Chris Jericho says Vince McMahon started hiring writers in 1999 because he wanted WWE SmackDown to be bigger than ‘Friends’
Chris Jericho had MLW founder Court Bauer on as his guest this week on “Talk Is Jericho.”
Bauer worked in WWE creative for a couple of years in the mid-2000s so he had some stories from his time in the company. Bauer gave his thoughts on MJF, Chris Jericho, the SmackDown writers room, Dusty Rhodes’ creative pitch, Vince McMahon’s love of d**k and fart jokes, Jerry Brisco, and working for Vince McMahon. Bauer also talked about what is next for MLW.
Jericho also shared some stories, including what happened behind-the-scenes with Mickey Rourke leading up to WrestleMania 25.
Jericho also explained why Vince McMahon made the decision to hire writers to script wrestler promos. Up until the late 90s, most wrestlers were given bullet points and much of what was said on TV was an ad-lib. That began to change in late 1999 and the writing staff grew into the 2000s and beyond.
Jericho said, “The reason why writers became a thing was because when we started SmackDown in ‘99, Vince made it his motto that SmackDown was going to be bigger than the show ‘Friends’.
‘Friends’ was at its peak or was still really huge. The bravado of Vince was we were going to beat ‘Friends’ on Thursday and his reasoning and idea and strategy was if ‘Friends’ had writers, then we need writers too. They suddenly went from no writers to 15 people in a room and not really knowing exactly who’s doing what and what is really happening or what is the story arc.”
You can listen to the entire podcast now via your favorite podcast app including Apple Podcasts and Google Play.
If you use any portion of the quotes from this article please credit Talk Is Jericho with a h/t to WrestlingNews.co for the transcription