Wrestling is Theatre, part 23564

Geno Mrosko, writing for Cageside Seats:

Acts like Bo Dallas and Adam Rose, which played so well at Full Sail in Orlando, have struggled in front of larger crowds on the road. That said, Dallas and Rose are not Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens, who had a match that looked a lot like Brock Lesnar vs. John Cena from the SummerSlam main event last year. Even if some of the charm is lost, these fellas deserve a bigger stage.

Right?

No, they don’t. In theatre, the best performances come through in smaller acting spaces in ways that they simply could not in large venues. It’s not just “charm” that is lost, but nuance, comfort, and truthfulness.

As fans of wrestling as a performance art, we ought to know better than to directly correlate stage size with success. These guys deserve promotion, and adulation, and a whole lot of money—not a bigger stage.

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Hyperbolic Hulk Hogan

WWE.com “goes one on one with “The Immortal” Hulk Hogan”:

When I was really jitterbugging right before I had to go out, Vince kicked the door down and he gave me this hug that felt like it should have broken my ribs.

  1. … And then I gave him a bodyslam that felt like it should have caused a destructive time-warp earthquake, brother!
  2. … And then I hugged him back with my 52″ pythons that should have turned him into a paraplegic, brother!
  3. … And then he said, “You look like you should still wrestle for the WWE Championship,” brother!

That accolade is fresh

KSP on Punk vs. Taker:

CM Punk is the first legitimate candidate to challenge Undertaker’s winning streak since Randy Orton in 2005. In retrospect, Henry, Batista, Edge, Michaels, and HHH were all obvious in how they would play out. Henry wasn’t worthy; Batista and Edge couldn’t beat Taker and hold onto their championships; and Michaels’ pair was really all about defining what it means to be a great wrestler. HHH also lost twice.

I laughed out loud at this, but I would propose that HHH’s pair was about defining what it meant to be a great wrestling performer, without necessarily being a great wrestler.

Also, welcome back, Sawyer.

Even hidden in the most squalid Parisian halls, wrestling partakes of the nature of the great solar spectacles, Greek drama and bullfights: in both, a light without shadow generates an emotion without reserve.

– Roland Barthes, “World of Wrestling”, Mythologies