The Wrestling Phenomenon
I would just like to start out and say that I dont think that watching wrestling on television is worth while. I cant understand how millions of people sit around their living rooms watching a bunch of muscle-bound wanna be jocks play fight and talk *censored*. ITS NOT REAL! What else do I have to say? The wrestlers and the officials admit it. The couch potatoes that watch this garbage are drawn in by the story of all things. You see, there is an ongoing saga behind every pseudo-body slam. None of it is real though, none of the trash talking, partnerships, or the fighting is real. Even so, people still are addicted to it. Wrestling today is bigger than it has ever been before. It is constantly ranked first on the Neilson Ratings (along with 2nd, 3rd, and so on until 7th).So, my question is, why is this phony wrestling so popular?
Professional wrestling is one of the many worthless products of the 1980s. It had its time in the spotlight in the mid to late 80s with super-stars like Hulk Hogan and Andr The Giant. Then faded along with eight tracks and wine coolers. The difference, wrestlers along with the officials swore that every move was real. Every time Hulk Hogan fake-punched his opponent while simotaniously stomping his foot on the floor to create the illusion that he actually hit him, was supposed to be real. As the 90s rolled in wrestling took a bout of silence. For an instant I thought that people had found the same thing that I had, a remote control, and changed the channel. We arent that lucky though because it is back, WWF and WCW are more popular than ever. The WCW and the WWF are not offiliated though. The WCW consists of has been super stars like Hulk Hogan, now known as Hollywood Hogan, and Rick Flair. On the other hand the WWF hasa new fresh redneck blood like Stone Cold Steve Austin and his archival Kane. Only the WWF gives drug tests to its participants, which is funny because all the old has beens have had a history of steroid use then quit, but now they are as ripped as they have ever been… hmmm sounds fishy. Most of the wrestling fan base watches the WWF, the fans say that it has a better story line and more appealing characters. While the WCW just has old burnouts who are hooked on steroids and cant write a simple script.
At a time when Jerry Springers ratings are at an all time high, it does not surprise me that people may occasionally tune into something like pro-wrestling, but week after week just seems like too much. According to Time.com, “…about 34 million people watch wrestling every week”.(Time, 1999) People who watch television these days want to see violence, they want to see controversy and conflict. The ironic thing is that the WWF and the WCW boast about themselves being “non-violent” and a family oriented program because all the wrestling is staged. However, according to Entertainment Weekly, “…in 50 episodes of “WWF RAW is War” on the USA network featured 42 instances of simulated drug or alcohol use or possession; 1,658 instances of wrestlers grabbing or pointing to their crotches…” (EW, 1999) now, how family oriented is talking about drugs while grabbing your crotch?They buy into this nighttime soap opera of a sport, knowing that it is actually just like any other action-adventure with little plot of conflict and resolution. Of a two hour program, only about a half an hour is devoted to actual wrestling matches. You must wade through the countless trash talking, advertisements, and amateur fights before you finally get to a main event which will, of course have the outcome predetermined by the participants.
Now the WWF and the WCW are everywhere, there is tons of merchandise from shirts to video games, and they are all over the Internet.The official sight of the WWF (WWF.com) has had a traffic increase of 300 percent just since April 1998.(cnn.com) Each sight is about the same, they give the latest news and profile a select few wrestlers.
The Wrestling Phenomenon