Sunday, 12 August 2012

SO WHAT?! SERIES FINAL PART: So what I like professional Wrestling?

He sat on a bench lacing up his boots. Soon as he finished, he took a moment to concentrate on what he was about to say in a few moments. He stood up, did a warm up and walked out of the locker room.

He walked in the hall in silent thought and saw the TV crew ready with the camera. He went up to them then the camera was focused on him and in a few seconds it began recording. He shouts.

"Tonight I want you! If you run and hide it's not doing to work, like it didnt work with Saddam Hussian!......."
Many would say he talked gobbledy gook, but if they are honest they do GET what he was saying.

Yes, wrestling, to the general public, has a kind of a bad wrap. It's 'cheesy', 'silly waste of time', 'terrible television' or 'just for children'. Many do not realise the skill and dedication it takes to be a good wrestler. The thought process and the ideas they must come up with to engage the public. The hours of hard training it takes to have good matches. Pro wrestling is not rocket science but it is not easy, it just looks easy.

Like most sports, there is thought and great team work between the wrestlers to have a match. There are a variety of moves in the ring that can be dangerous if done wrong. For example a bodyslam, an easy looking move enough, but land on the wrong angle on the receiving end of it, there can be an injury. That clearly would lead to a trip to the medic, missing a few match dates and maybe a heated argument with the wrestler who gave the bodyslam or all three.

To focus on another danger from a team work gone wrong, there is the bad match. A terrible situation which can be likened to a bad stand up comedy act or a flop concert. Just like other entertainment which is shown in front of an audience, there is nowhere to hide. Every move the wrestlers make is seen mostly at every angle.  If the wrestlers are awkward performing moves or miss time them, it's embarrassing. There are video clips on the internet to show just how. Wrestling fans call them 'wrestling bloppers' which can happen to the worst and best wrestler.

This is the same with the other part of being a pro wrestler, the promo. When a wrestler has to act he/she dislikes another wrestler while speaking to the camera, there is an immediate pressure to make sure it comes off perfectly. If the promo isn't even average standard the shame is on the wrestler after it's done. Again, it's embarrassing.

Just like most areas of professions, there is a high standard wrestlers are rated by. However this does not mean every wrestler on weekly TV are the elite class.  This is what some of these critics do not fully understand. There are wrestlers who are good or bad regardless if they are on TV or not.  The best workers, who can make a match look fantastic and there are sub standard wrestlers, who are better off wrestling in an audience of their pet dogs.  A person can easily watch a horrible wrestling match just out of curiosity then mistake it for an example of a good wrestling match before switching the channel in disappointment. After, they might feel that is the best pro wrestling is ever going to get, but they would be wrong. Given the chance to watch another match, they might see much better performers.That is why there are a handful of names that are praised in the pro wrestling industry.

If you are a bit cynical about pro wrestling or pro wrestlers, watch this
guy. WWE's future star, DEAN AMBROSE.

Besides the backstage politics that occasionally happens in pro wrestling, there is some intelligence involved in the profession to the point a wrestler is widely recognised and respected. In fact, any none fan can have great conversation with a wrestler and find them insightful and clever. That is what most people often miss out when bashing wrestlers. Wrestlers are just like everyone else who have  ambition and a good head on their shoulders. When listening to some of past lives of wrestlers it can be surprising they could be have been a success in a different profession. Be it sport; like UK or US football, swimming, athletics or white collar jobs like a judge, lawyer, business executive or a doctor.

It should be understood, that it is passion as to why these people would be bothered to get into the wrestling business in the first place. The thrill of performing, the chants of an audience and the social lifestyle are what attracted these men and women we now know as wrestlers. Ask some of these normal 9 to 5 workers what they would have liked as a career, they would say an actor or a huge pop star. Wrestling is just like that to some people. A job that is not the normal. A job that is made for ambitious performers. A job that drinks in the reaction of a crowd.

Having just mentioned the crowd, a group of people who arguably get more bashing from others are the wrestling fans. The most common phrase who dismiss pro wrestling on TV is "Who watches this stuff?". Through lack of understanding, these critics just see brutes wearing ridiculous costumes performing 'fake moves' and 'cheap soap opera.' Probably they think the main 'crime' of pro wresting is that, it's not a competitive sport because wrestling matches are choreographed and the winners are decided before the wrestlers even enter the ring.

 The fact of the matter is, there is a certain level of real competitiveness in pro wrestling. This competitiveness is not with the opponents, but with the wrestlers themselves. It's similar to trying to beat your personal best on a race track or in a power lifting training session. Wrestling fans know this and see that every time a wrestler performs they are actually performing (or should be!) at their personal best. How they do their moves, how they engage with the audience, how they tell the story during matches.

Wrestling fans appreciate the art of pro wrestling  as a whole, like eager spectators at an opera. As fans they are critical of all the wrestlers' performances. Some fan comments may be vague or some detailed, but one thing is for sure, they have a clear idea of what wrestling matches are good and what matches that are an equivalent to a dirty urinal. Those who look down on pro wrestling fans, dont know  these fans mostly think this way.

Yes, there are some wrestling fans that give the general fanbase a bad name. There are the 'neanderthal' types, who shout alot and act like fools and there are  'egotistical geeks', who do too much ranting about whats bad about pro wrestling. The term for them are 'smart marks'.  Unfortunately, it is these type of fans who unfairly get the spotlight when critics want to point out a typical wrestling fan. A typical wrestling fan would not be so obnoxious. Most fans discuss and behave like any other civil fan of entertainment.

So if pro wrestling is not one's cup of tea then that is fine, not everyone must be a wresting fan or like pro wrestling. However pro wrestling is profession that should be more respected.

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