Hyperreality and Suspended Disbelief in Wrestling

“AS GOD AS MY WITNESS, HE IS BROKEN IN HALF.”

Mankind plummets 16ft into an announce table from the top of a cell, and Jim Ross โ€” genuinely fearing for Mankind’s life โ€” reacts with the same conviction he would if he knew there was no threat at all.

The greatest wrestling personalitiesย are the greatest actors, athletes and public speakers. They’re the ones who create the hyperreality of wrestling, and allow us slip in and out of the state of suspended disbelief.

Despite the WWE’s best efforts in the past, there’s no way you’re still unaware that wrestling is scripted.…   [continue reading]

Well, You Know Something, Mean Gene…

Backstage at Wrestlemania 48, Hulk’s eyes are popping out of his face as he spasmodically lurches into the camera.

Reeling back, Gene Okerlund opens his mouth ready to speak, Hogan grabs the mic.

“WELL, YOU KNOW SOMETHING, MEAN GENE…”, flicking into a dead eyed flex, whipping his arms around, cupping his ear to an empty room, cocaine head vibrating.

“All my little Hulkamaniacs been training, saying their prayers, eating their vitamins, being true to themselves and true to their country. They’re real Americans, brother. And the first thing I want to do for my Hulkamaniacs is to look them in the eye andโ€””

Plastic scowl snaps into thousand-yard stare.…   [continue reading]