WWE is putting on a number of shows in Saudi Arabia as part of a mammoth deal between the pro wrestling company and the Middle Eastern nation, reportedly running ten years and paying WWE as much as $50 million per event (which is what April’s Greatest Royal Rumble brought in).
That doesn’t seem like the greatest idea given Saudi Arabia’s uh, less than ideal record on human rights. On Sunday’s episode of Last Week Tonight, the topic du jour was Saudi Arabia, and WWE’s relationship with the country got about a minute of airtime, complete with clips from The Greatest Royal Rumble event that look awkward at best, and like blatant propaganda for the House of Saud at worst.
WWE is still burying their head in the sand about the situation, and hasn’t announced any plans to cancel its Crown Jewel event in two weeks or so. John Oliver and Last Week Tonight alone aren’t going to change WWE’s mind, but the company’s mention in this segment could end up having an effect on the company’s shareholders and the members of the public who have been blissfully unaware about WWE’s relationship with Saudi Arabia.
The cynic in me thinks that nothing is going to happen, and that WWE will release another statement claiming that everything is fine and everyone is overreacting. But maybe, just maybe, dominoes will keep falling over the next week or so and the company will be forced to take a stand.