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#KillThatNoise – Wrestling is for Everybody

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Wrestling is society.

The Attitude Era was iconic, revolutionary, reckless and disturbing. The story of Vince McMahon’s near downfall in the mid-90’s version of WWF has been told a million times. When you read, hear or discuss all of the happenings of the most popular time frame in wrestling history, it’s always from the standpoint of the WWE.

The Attitude Era was about a mindset in pro wrestling, but it also mirrored what was going on in society at the time, especially with pop culture. Today, some fans want that feeling back. It’s the feeling of spontaneity and not knowing what is going to happen. More importantly, the happenings of the Attitude Era took place everywhere they weren’t supposed to. Vince Russo would like you to think he created the term. Vince McMahon would like you to think he made it famous. In reality, wrestling became the entertainment medium in which society and pop culture melted into one giant pot in the late 90’s. Monday Night Raw and Monday Night Nitro became the ultimate collaborators of everything within American pop culture.

Wrestling is simple.

The glory days of the WWF gave us characters that were definitive. I knew that Bret Hart was The Hitman. He wore pink and black, cool shades, never faded under pressure and was precise with his execution of every move made to his opponent. I knew that Bill Goldberg was a Spear and Jackhammer away from a win in every match he had in WCW. Raven in ECW and WCW evoked so much emotion in his promos that I only wanted to hear him talk and Evenflow someone. Conversely, I don’t want to hear Bray Wyatt talk anymore. I’m done with him. Apparently, a segment of fans think that Bayley sucks now. Well, they’re kind of right, I guess. WWE hasn’t done her any favors with the way they are booking her. I shouldn’t have to think about ‘the way they are booking her’ actually. Somewhere Dom Draper is drinking heavily thinking about all of the missed opportunities that WWE has choke slammed away with Bayley. And Bray Wyatt. And Baron Corbin. Maybe it’s just people with names that start with the letter “B”. I’m looking at you Bobby Roode…

Wrestling is complex.

The Kenny Omega and Kazuchika Okada trilogy in New Japan is like one huge math equation with addition, subtraction, dividing and multiplying. Omega and Okada get the answer right every single time. The G1 Climax truly is a feat to create and deliver on a yearly basis. Jedo and Gedo don’t receive nearly enough credit for the job they do at keeping people strong and catapulting others up the rankings, while still creating special match-ups on every G1 card. The tournament is a grueling marathon of matches, especially for those on the top of their blocks. The complexity of the G1 for both wrestlers and fans is what makes it so compelling. Could WWE ever pull off a tournament like this without Vince McMahon wanting to change every single match outcome? No one is more complex than Vinny Mac.

Wrestling is emotional.

Nothing in this very world can bring a grown man or woman to tears quicker than pro wrestling. When Roman Reigns sent The Undertaker to an eternal grave at this past WrestleMania, fans knew that Mark Calloway would be riding into the sunset. The reality hit quicker than a Superman Punch. Ric Flair vs. Shawn Michaels at WrestleMania 24 resulted in one of the most intense and emotional moments ever for WWE. Seeing the tears in the eyes of HBK and Flair, the “I love you” to Naitch before the final Sweet Chin Music — unreal. On the flip side, we have Hiromu Takahashi and his stuffed pet cat Daryl in New Japan. Takahashi debuted Daryl as a way to cope with losing the IWGP Junior Heavyweight title (or Mr. Belt) to Kushida. Then, tragedy struck as Bad Luck Fale murdered Daryl during their match in the G1. It was one of the most hilarious scenes of the year, and of course, the death of Daryl became an instant meme.

Wrestling is for everyone.

Wrestling’s detractors should know by now not to trash fans of the squared circle. Well, they don’t. For every person that has ever asked me or anyone else “Why do you still watch wrestling?”, I sure will tell them that Sony won’t stop making Spider-Man movies until humans are extinct. Don’t we all know what a Spider-Man does anyway? If you haven’t noticed by the recent indie boom and subsequent eruption of creativeness within the scene, wrestling is life. It is a derivative of everything going on around us, cleaned up, projected as a sporting event with context and backstory. Social media allows it to be as real as it ever is going to get. All we have to do is react.

#KillThatNoise

Follow me @willmarelle on Twitter.

Shannon is a proud product of Detroit, Michigan. He's a connoisseur of all things hip-hop and pro wrestling and often compares the two forms of entertainment. He's a feature writer for FightBoothPW and also a corporate nomad.

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