WWE commentator Michael Cole joined the podcast "The Press Box" to talk about the different modus operandi that the Stamford-based company has compared to other wrestling federations. Michael Cole said he considers himself an actor for WWE: “I always tell everyone when they ask me to work for WWE that I do sports entertainment with a fictional sport and using a fake name.
I mean all of this with the utmost respect. I am not fooling the profession by saying this, but I try to use these words to explain to people what it is like to be such a commentator. My real name is Sean Coulthard. I'm from CBS News.
I entered this world as a fan with no idea what I was getting into. I had to come up with a different name because Shawn Michaels was one of the main stars of the company at the time and they didn't want to have two Shawns on the air.
So I took my middle name and half my last name. So I have a name that doesn't belong to me and I play a TV station. It's really important that people understand this because yes, indeed, we broadcast it and are commentators.
What we do is serious work. If we don't believe in certain plots or we don't believe in certain characters, we have to make the audience believe that we still believe in them. This is why we are actors. We do a scripted TV show, so we have to do things the way the writers and the boss want us to work."
Michael Cole talks about WWE
On WWE's difference from other federations, Michael Cole said: “We are not a wrestling federation. WWE is an entertainment company. So the style I use and the style used by many people who work here in WWE who are different from the others.
What we do here you can't find from other companies, because many of them, rightly so, are mainly professional wrestling companies. Instead, we are a product that entertains. We just happen to use a wrestling ring as a focal point where our conflicts are resolved.
But for our business to be successful, you need to get people involved. Most of the people who look at our product obviously enjoy watching matches but are also passionate about the way we do it. There are a lot of companies out there that do strictly wrestling and that's great. Here we focus a lot on the stories. We are storytellers but I think our difference lies precisely here."