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Old 04.09.2014, 04:08 PM   #1
SuchFriendsAreDangerous
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Sucks for him, but really, it is kind of cool the dude got to quite literally go out while very briefly on top. Guy had a haunted past like ALL pro-wrestlers, but was part of Americana.. Interestingly remembering wrestling, thinking, how the fuck did this crap get to be so damned popular? It was TERRIBLE. Yet, wrestling events were as national as legitimate sports games, NBA or NFL or MLB playoffs which are communal moments in America. Folks are ALL talking about those sports and games even if they aren't into sports. Even if they're talking AGAINST those sports, those sports have become part of a national dialogue. Its actually really what got me back into sports a few years ago, the communal aspect. I've always been obsessed with watching/reading way TOO MUCH international news and geopolitics, but really, who the fuck ever wants to have a conversation about that? Who at the water cooler, the metro, or the bar want to talk about shit like that? Most people don't even know where or what the fuck I'm talking about.. Sports? Very different. We can talk about sports to just about anybody. I keep up with too many teams and sports simply to have conversation with all kinds of people. I've been caught up dissecting the sports world at times to the same depth as I used to dissect the real world news. Yet, how the fuck did wrestling become one of these?

Simple. REAL sports aren't necessarily THAT real in the life of most casual and even moderately serious fans. Stats aren't what is important, the narratives, the stories, the images, those are what drives most people. The experience of the crowd, or of the "high-light plays" or the shouting and yelling of grown men in a kind of stylized combat. People love that shit. That is what they gravitate around. Not the stats or the precision or the athleticism, not the sport itself, but really, the drama. Wrestling perfectly encapsulated that didn't it. It emphasized and exaggerated it, because wrestling was free, it was scripted and created. In REAL sports, those kind of drama evolve almost by coincidence or temporary circumstance. Magic and Bird. Joe Montana destroying everybody else's football team. Michael Jordan destroying everybody else's basketball team. The whole country communally sharing their unnecessarily vitriol against Kobe Bryant and then Lebron James... Wrestling could literally just make this same kind of shit up! They could produce their entire product around those artificially created sports drama.

Ultimate Warrior dethroned Hulk Hogan who at the time was running America as if he were Magic Johnson or Joe Montana. This was all scripted of course, but it impacted Americans in that same kind of way..

Really then, wrestling's fakeness also reveals how fake most American's passion for sports really is. Sports is not about the actuality of the athletes, if that were the case people really would adore Lebron James who is one of the most sincerely likable basketball players since Scottie Pippen. But they like the narrative, the drama. That is why they loved wrestling!

In truth, its probably only because Michael Jordan elevated the NBA and the Cowboys elevated the NFL and McGuire/Sosa/Bonds elevated the MLB, and so there was no more room for fake sports in America's collective consciousness. Anyway, that is my rant. I read a lot of Grantland, and they've had this wrestling section for a long time. I've never read any of their wrestling articles until I saw Ultimate Warrior headline, but, it had me thinking about wrestling for months, about how the fuck such literally SILLY NONSENSE became something so damned unnecessarily serious. America is a trip. Rest In Peace to the James Helwig, a man of mixed reviews, both controversial in his real life, and yet, somehow momentarily captivated the American audience for several years..
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Old 04.09.2014, 04:12 PM   #2
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Wrestling gave people something to "root for" or even more typically American, villains to "root against"..

Sports is all about heroes and villains like Greek story telling.. Peyton Manning was their hero, Seahawks become the villain (hero loses so the game is called "boring").. Tim Duncan was their hero, Lebron James was the villain (people still have the nerve to say the Spurs could have won when Games 6 and 7 clearly proved otherwise )
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Old 04.09.2014, 04:16 PM   #3
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Old 04.09.2014, 04:21 PM   #4
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that list has like, all of them right?

The sadder list is the growing list of NFL players who died both young AND broke, and increasingly likely as a result of injuries to the brain caused by football

But I digress this is about the Ultimate Warrior and that crazy era of American sports when Wrestling somehow was taken seriously..
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Old 04.09.2014, 08:14 PM   #5
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Old 04.09.2014, 09:35 PM   #6
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It's always been the storyline that intrigued me with prowrestling over the years as well, not necessarily the matches. Loved the Attitude era in the late 90s and what WCW did just prior to that.
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