Jimmy Jacobs was recently a guest on the Talk Is Jericho podcast and discussed 205 Live and some of his favorite storylines he wrote for WWE.
Jacobs said he thinks 205 Live is in a tough spot in that it comes on after SmackDown Live. He pointed out that the cruiserweight division lacks the star power of the past. Jacobs also mentioned how the high-flying style is prevalent among wrestlers who aren’t cruiserweights, so 205 Live is not as much of an attraction as it should be.
“Vince was really excited about 205 Live when it first started, but I really think in a lot of ways, but they were in a really tough position, right off the bat. First off, being on at 10 p.m., after 2 hours of SmackDown without any stars, so it is really hard to create stars from non-stars. You need somebody that people know. I need to know that Noam Dar has at least met Chris Jericho, they are in completely different universes,” Jacobs said. “Other thing is that there’s really no demand for the show. Look, this isn’t 20 years ago when WCW at the top of the card was Kevin Nash, Hulk Hogan, Big Show, or Lex Luger; you had Jericho, Rey Mysterio; I mean, the top of the WWE card those guys can go. Seth Rollins does the 205 Live style better than the 205 Live guys do, so where is the demand? Now you see smaller guys, lesser stars, doing stuff not really as good as those on the main roster. John Cena is even doing Springboard Diamond Cutters; that style has really permeated on the main roster. It’s a really tough position they are in. I give those guys a lot of credit from the talents to the Writer’s. It was and is a really tough job.”
Prior to his firing in October, Jacobs had worked as a writer for the WWE for two-and-a-half years and wrote many high-profile storylines. During Dean Ambrose’s feud with Chris Jericho, Jacobs came up with the idea for Mitch the Plant.
“I was the one that convinced Dean Ambrose to call it ‘Mitch the Plant.’ To me, I was like, look, once you break the plant, and hit him with him, you will get a 2 for 1 deal. Not only did you ‘kill’ Dean Ambrose, but you also ‘killed’ Mitch the Plant,” Jacobs said. “I felt, when you picked up that potted plant and you were going to hit Dean with it, the crowd’s reaction was like, no! Don’t do it! I thought that it was perfect that you were telling us to never call it Mitch the Plant ever again.”
Arguably his most notable storyline was his creation of “The List” for Jericho. Jacobs explained that his inspiration for the idea came from many different things. He noted what really made it work was Jericho’s commitment to the storyline.
“Each week, we all write segments for the show. At this point I am writing your [Jericho] segments for the show. I get an outline of what the segment is supposed to be. This one said that—at the time you had a problem with Mick Foley, so it said that Chris Jericho comes out to the ring and airs his grievances about how Mick Foley is doing a bad job as a General Manager. I see, ‘airing grievances’ and thought, man, maybe he should have a list of his grievances,” Jacons said. “Then I thought about Steve Corino. In real life, Steve Corino has the S**t List, so I’m like, okay, so he airs his grievances, and I thought, man, what if he has a list of his grievances like Steve Corino has in real life, just people that piss him off, but Chris Jericho is so petty, everybody pisses him off. You can do a lot with that; so I started thinking about how much you can do with that list. I was talking to my ex-girlfriend about it at the time, and was going back and forth about it. On Christmas, Jericho can go up to someone and say, you know what, just for Christmas I’m going to take you off the list. Then they question whether they were on the list, and there was just so much you can do social media wise, like taking a picture at the guy in the airport, he is on the list. I just thought how cool it could be. I started pitching it to a couple of the writers, but nobody was really as excited about it as I was.
“Thankfully, you got it, and thankfully you were happy about it,” he continued. “I went up to you in Memphis, Tennessee and I remember pitching the whole thing to you, and you were curious if we were talking about more than just for tonight’s show, and I said yeah, and I felt like it could be your new thing, and how i think we can do a lot with that. I am just so happy that you got it. One of the things that you brought to it was the look of it. In my mind, it was a crumpled up piece of paper, like a folded up piece of paper that you had left in your tights. The bit would be like you pulling it out of your tights and then unfolding it, and then scribbling on it, and you had an idea of the clipboard, which was much more visual.”
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Talk Is Jericho with an H/T to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Source: Talk Is Jericho
Peter Bahi contributed to this article.