Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi, reality TV star of The Jersey Shore, not only appeared on WWE Monday Night Raw in St. Louis on March 14. The diminutive Snooki engaged in some actual pro-wrestling wrestling-style violence, in a performance that has WWE fans and Jersey Shore fans fist-pumping for more. (See video below.)
"Vince McMahon and the WWE have always had a knack for trying to tie celebrities into their product to help draw nontraditional viewers to their programming," said Kevin Kleinrock, a 16-year veteran of the professional wrestling industry, whose credits include creating and producing MTV's Wrestling Society X. "With Snooki being a current media darling, and with the WWE's biggest pay-per-view event of the year, WrestleMania, just around the corner, it was a classic and wise WWE move to bring her to Raw."
Part of the WWE's genius in employing Snooki, explains Kleinrock, goes beyond having her disrupt the popular Monday Night Raw program.
"Beyond her Raw appearance, she's now scheduled to actually be in a wrestling match at the annual Wrestlemania spectacular," he elaborated. "With PPV buy rates dropping in part due to apathy towards wrestling, PPV dollars being lost to UFC, and Internet piracy, WWE is doing all it can to make sure it hits the million-buy mark they aim for annually for the event. Despite her not doing much during her Raw appearance, the media buzz around it is publicity WWE normally can't buy. These days I think many WWE decisions are based on the question 'WWTC?' or 'What Would TMZ Cover?'"
(Kleinrock, naturally, is correct; TMZ jumped on the Snooki on WWE story early this morning, with the headline: "Snooki Drops CROTCH BOMB In WWE Debut." Nice job, McMahon!)
This was hardly Snooki's first appearance on professional wrestling programming. She previously appeared on Spike TV's TNA wrestling last fall. Notably, TNA has a wrestler named "Cookie," whom Kleinrock describes as "basically an homage to Snooki."
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