Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The Obligatory McWrestling Intro

Strange this "professional wrestling" thing. Even though it's not considered a legitimate sporting event and is promoted as the more-ambiguous "sports-entertainment" event, wrestling has seen its share of high points and low points. Either way, it's also seen as the lowest form of entertainment out there, simply because it's "fake" and "stupid."

But then that's why I enjoy it. I like my action predetermined. It makes sense to me that when one wrestler rapes another man's wife, said man challenges the fiend to a wrestling match when in real life, the wrestler would get arrested and tried. It makes sense that two guys would feud over a woman's manegerial services. It makes sense in the realm of professional wrestling, where the backstories is almost as important as in the in-ring product.

I've been watching wrestling (and will refer to it as such for the remainder of this post) on and off since the early 1990s... mostly with nothing more than a passing interest. But really, it was only around 1998 where I really got hooked. Yeah, the longtime fans know this period as the Monday Night Wars, where two wrestling companies fought toe-to-toe for ratings supremacy and resulted in plenty of product, both good and bad.

But even when I saw the shows, I knew it was scripted. It had to be. I mean, the first show I've seen that got me hooked was Wrestlemania XIV, where Steve Austin won his first WWF World title. There was a clip show promoting a match between Undertaker and Kane and some of those clips involved lightning bolts and guys being set on fire. Seriously, did anyone watching this doubt that this is nothing more than elaborate spectacle? Did anyone need more proof than this that all this was just for show?

So I've been watching wrestling for about a decade. Times have changed, old promotions have fallen, and new ones rise to fill the void. Unfortunately, the product that I watch now is nothing like the product that got me hooked... almost to the point where I'm content just buying the various anthology DVDs comprising classic wrestling matches. Even so, I still watch the shows and I still follow most of the happenings. The interest is still there and I still pay attention to what's going on.

Of course, even though the action in the ring is fixed, what happens outside is anything but... what with all the drug abuse stories and drug-related deaths that have happened. It's rather funny to think that there's a bigger death toll related to a "fake" sport than a legitimate one. Alas, that's the sad truth...

But for those who put that little lining aside, they'll find that the product is still somewhat enjoyable and anxiously await the next big golden age. I know I am...

End obligatory first post.

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