` WrestlingEpicenter.com - THE RANT - Wrestling Popularity, Remember the Cycles? WrestlingEpicenter.com - THE RANT - Wrestling Popularity, Remember the Cycles?
THE RANT - Wrestling Popularity, Remember the Cycles?

Posted By James Walsh on 04/04/18

To this day, even as a 36 year old guy with a wife and kids, when I say we run a wrestling LLC and they realize we mean professional wrestling, the look I get back is that puzzled look. I interpret that ina few diferent ways.

One way is, "How can he like that crap? Doesn't he know it is fake?"

Another way is, "I wonder if he even realizes it is fake."

The great irony is, I never believed it was real. I remember in 1990 or so, I was 8 going on 9, my mother politely asked if I "get how it works." When I explained that I get it and, maybe with more kid friendly language, explained the concept of "kayfabe" to her, my family's objection to wrestling went away. Because, like I said, I understood it at its core from pretty much my infancy as a fan. In fact, I have been a fan since 1985. I remember finding it on the dial on the big box TV with the dials and seeing Saturday Night's Main Event on one night. Hulk Hogan and Junkyard Dog jumping off the screen at me hamming it up was it for me. I was hooked.

But, wrestling was not always cool. In fact, it was sometimes the bane of my existence. No, not the masked guy from Batman either.

As a kid, everyone loved Hulk Hogan. THe Ultimate Warrior transition was the start of people turning away as it was a harder sell than the Hulkster to my aging age group. By the time we reached the Lex Express days, wrestling was about as cool as the New Kids on the Block in 1993... It was not going to be well received if people knew you loved it still. My trouble? I never hid the fact I loved it.

I remember going in to school and being ridiculed for a good number of years from 1992 to 1996 for loving this stuff. My nWo shirts and ECW shirts were met with less resistance and by 1998, I was the guy people came to in order to find out what was "really" happening behind the scenes. I guess being an old schol Prodigy wrestling mark in the early 90's and an early Internet wrestling nerd all around made me the "answer man." I vividuly remember the same people who mocked wrestling as fake and stupid coming to school in Rock, Austin, and nWO Wolfpack T shirts later on. I guess it got less fake and smarter, huh?

THere will always be a degree of disdain for wrestling because it is a form of entertainment that presents itself as a sport. After all, that is what "sports entertainment" really means, isn't it? Those that don't get it will never get it. If you need proof of that, watch the media's coverage when Donald Trump tweeted a clip of himself clotheslining Vince McMahon last year. "He's assaulting a man in a suit!" Holy shit.

I find myself often using the Godfather's line of "This is the business we've chosen." I say it sarcastically when we are disrespected or something absolutely absurd happens that we have to confront like the sex tape leaks, the dearly deaths, or the Donald Trump tweets.

Like Alice Cooper said, though, villains that last long enough eventually become beloved. I have no doubt that wrestling, despite this strange place we're in right now where it is mainstream accepted with guys like John Cena hosting the Today Show meanwhile others continue to disrespect it, I have no doubt it will one day be as hot as it was when Hulk Hogan made the WWE what it is today (and for the son in law of the company to lecture the man who made him rich on anything is exactly why I am no fan of WWE) or as hot as it was when there were 3 viable companies with incredible products as it was when the WWE Attitude ECW, and WCW were all running wild on the TV ratings sheets. It will happen. It isn't going tob e soon. But, wrestling will rise again. A-Men.

For now, lets enjoy our place. We are millions strong. We are wrestling fans. And, it is OK to admit that. It isn't going to make you popular. And, some might think you're a mongoloid still. But, considering the waves I've seen, I'm content with the place we're in now.