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WWE- Conversations during matches
September 15, 2013 5:39 AM   Subscribe


 
wrestling's fake?
posted by randomkeystrike at 5:55 AM on September 15, 2013


Catching the wrestlers calling spots is one of my favorite things about watching the show! It gives some cool insight on how they perform those insane physical acts. This post rules! YES! YES! YES!
posted by smackwich at 5:57 AM on September 15, 2013 [4 favorites]


I'M FROM WINNIPEG YOU IDIOT!
posted by selfnoise at 5:59 AM on September 15, 2013 [23 favorites]


YOU'RE FROM WESTBROOK, MAINE!
posted by jaduncan at 6:53 AM on September 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


It's not real helpful to the stereotype of women wrestlers being less competent that the one included clip from a women's match is a botched move.
posted by cribcage at 7:20 AM on September 15, 2013


These aren't exactly "conversations." I was hoping for something more along the lines of two wrestlers talking about the final episode of Lost during a match.
posted by etc. at 7:29 AM on September 15, 2013 [7 favorites]


@cribcage there was a bunch of men screwing up in this video. So I'm not sure how you think the inclusion of women in what is generally a blooper real is somehow negative. Unless of course, you think that reminding people that women participate in WWF (C? E?) wrestling makes all women look bad.
posted by Napierzaza at 7:39 AM on September 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


That's a remarkably stupid and bad-faith interpretation of what I think was a relatively simple comment.

There is a prevailing stereotype in professional wrestling that the level of performance among women is lower. Perhaps you're not a wrestling fan, and/or not aware of this trope, but it's the case. My comment was simply that, in a six-minute montage showing men calling spots, expressing frustration with setups, joking with fans, and yes, botching moves, I only saw one clip from a women's match and that was a botched move.

I didn't think it was an especially controversial comment, just a casual observation. You've gotta be reading MetaFilter in some kind of special reinterpretive font to conclude I was saying women shouldn't wrestle.
posted by cribcage at 7:49 AM on September 15, 2013 [7 favorites]


It's a funny video that verifies what we all know: wrestling is staged but the actors are doing things that can and will hurt them. Maybe we can skip the progressive battle for total equality for one thread.
posted by planetesimal at 7:54 AM on September 15, 2013 [15 favorites]


I find that a lot of smaller promotions are pretty respectful of women's wrestling and the dudes in my degenerate group of rasslin fans all really enjoy the women because many times they're more technically skilled than the men. I find the real discrimination in wrestling to come from the top down, with organizations like WWE failing to have a respectable women's division (until lately, I love the Kaitlyn/AJ feud!) and forcing female characters into stupid angles where they are made to look like sluts and whores on the regular.
posted by smackwich at 7:54 AM on September 15, 2013 [3 favorites]


There is a prevailing stereotype in professional wrestling that the level of performance among women is lower. Perhaps you're not a wrestling fan, and/or not aware of this trope, but it's the case. My comment was simply that, in a six-minute montage showing men calling spots, expressing frustration with setups, joking with fans, and yes, botching moves, I only saw one clip from a women's match and that was a botched move.

I'd like to think that the reason there was only clip of ladies and it was a blooper is because maybe lady wrestlers DON'T SCRIPT WHILE THEY ARE GOING! Either that or the Fabulous Moolah was incomprehensible. GLOW for the win!
posted by tafetta, darling! at 7:54 AM on September 15, 2013 [3 favorites]


Let me undo the derail: you know why there is almost no talking (of this sort) during women's matches? Those matches are kept very short and they are easy to string together. Only the most-veteran women on the roster (in WWE) ever got to call a spot or improvise. Trish Stratus did this, and only really near the end of her six-year run in WWE.

Which brings me to a larger point: Yes, grats, you found some spot-talking. That is the small price to pay in exchange for matches that are responsive to the crowd. In that Batista/Undertaker spot, where Taker doesn't quite do the chokeslam right and Batista doesn't quite bump right, taker asks if he is all right. That was probably what was supposed to be the end of the match, but the crowd didn't react the way they should have to the end of the match. So Batista says "no" and then "you gotta give me the Tombstone" which is Undertaker's more-painful*, more-dangerous**, rarely-seen finishing maneuver. I saw this match as it happened, and the reaction later was much better.

And in other news, there is tape on the stage of a Broadway production and oftentimes the medieval and fantasy characters on that stage are wearing wireless microphones. I mean, seriously, omg, experience-breaking.

* In-fiction.
** In-fiction and in real life. Piledrivers are basically real-life banned in WWE due to the risk of neck injury. Only 5 people have done them in the past 5 years: The Undertaker, Kane (a couple of times), CM Punk (once), Triple H (once), Edge (once or twice).
posted by andreaazure at 8:01 AM on September 15, 2013 [7 favorites]


I shouldn't have been surprised, but I was a little taken aback at how legitimately dangerous staged wrestling is. I've definitely gained some respect for these performers.
posted by jcreigh at 8:27 AM on September 15, 2013 [5 favorites]


Maffew does this in the Botchamania series as a segment he calls "Everybody talks too much"
posted by deezil at 8:42 AM on September 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


Pro wrestling was by far my biggest hobby growing up. Much like a kid who continues to believe in Santa for a few awkward extra years beyond what is normal, I so desperately wanted to believe my favorite sport was legitimate that I ignored much of the readily available evidence to the contrary and continued to convince myself wrestling was "real" well into middle school.

Two events forced me to finally acknowledge the truth.

The first came when I traveled with my family to Seattle to attend a cousin's wedding. Ahead of us in line at the car rental counter was Harley Race and Jim Brunzell, a heel and a babyface, peacefully traveling together without devolving into a brawl. (Somewhere at my parents house there should still be an autographed SeaTac map from these two).

The second was when I was watching a match on TV and heard "GERMAN SUPLEX!" yelled out of nowhere and then a second or two later one of the wrestlers executed a german suplex on the other.
posted by The Gooch at 8:43 AM on September 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


Not only is it dangerous, but on the lower levels it's done without attendant health insurance or pay commensurate with the danger. So not only are wrestlers risking their health for their art, they're doing it with the foreknowledge that it might cripple them physically and financially.

That's dedication. Or insanity. I'm never sure which.
posted by winna at 8:45 AM on September 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


"Finding out that wrestling is fake isn't the end of appreciation for it: it's the beginning."
-Merle Vincent, wrestlecrap.com

I know I quote this in nearly every wrestling thread, but I can't help it; wrestling is awesome.
posted by Uther Bentrazor at 8:54 AM on September 15, 2013 [20 favorites]


Winna: Both. Definitely both.
posted by andreaazure at 8:55 AM on September 15, 2013


Why you gotta be all busting the kayfabe?
posted by Samizdata at 9:18 AM on September 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


tafetta, darling!: "There is a prevailing stereotype in professional wrestling that the level of performance among women is lower. Perhaps you're not a wrestling fan, and/or not aware of this trope, but it's the case. My comment was simply that, in a six-minute montage showing men calling spots, expressing frustration with setups, joking with fans, and yes, botching moves, I only saw one clip from a women's match and that was a botched move.

I'd like to think that the reason there was only clip of ladies and it was a blooper is because maybe lady wrestlers DON'T SCRIPT WHILE THEY ARE GOING! Either that or the Fabulous Moolah was incomprehensible. GLOW for the win!
"

When I was in the Conservation Corps, GLOW was mandatory on the rec room projection TV. And, yeah, I used to crush a little on Dementia. She was a hoot, hockey mask, hatchet, teddy bear and all.
posted by Samizdata at 9:22 AM on September 15, 2013


I'm not at all surprised that they call shots to each other. I am pleasantly surprised at how often they check in on each other to make sure they're okay, and apologize to each other when they hurt one another.
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 9:24 AM on September 15, 2013 [6 favorites]


Previously

Although for the majority of the time I watched it I knew that wrestling was fake (and with old British wrestling, being so much less as so much less athletic) it's kinda like theatre or watching a film, you know it's not really happening but you go a long with it.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 9:35 AM on September 15, 2013


And in other news, there is tape on the stage of a Broadway production

Is there tape onstage during Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark? (Maybe there is...?) Production evolves. Five or ten years ago somebody asked either Shawn Michaels or Chris Jericho about this, and the performer answered that in his opinion, the biggest change was facial expressions. Twenty years ago, facial expressions weren't a big deal. Now television is everything and close-up angles are huge, and so facial acting has become part of the job.

There have been a few significant instances in recent years, including an especially memorable one between John Cena and the Rock, where microphones have failed to capture wrestlers' in-ring conversations. You take those failures and put them beside these behind-the-scenes slips, and I think it's not unreasonable to chide WWE for not demanding more from its audio.

Alternately, you can wonder why they don't work harder to develop signals and code words. Other types of entertainers do. If faith healers and psychics can reliably use code-word relays, there really isn't any reason Batista needs to explicitly tell Undertaker, "You gotta give me the tombstone." Again, it comes back to production. You have parts of the show that could teach Hollywood a thing or two, and then aspects that are indistinguishable from a local promoter's gig at some VFW hall. Maybe that's contradiction, or maybe it's charm.
posted by cribcage at 9:54 AM on September 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


If faith healers and psychics can reliably use code-word relays, there really isn't any reason Batista needs to explicitly tell Undertaker, "You gotta give me the tombstone."

They do have these, but they quickly get figured out by the fans (e.g., "goozle" for chokeslam) or they're so match-specific (e.g., a sequence that triggers a run-in) that they're not useful when the wrestlers are trying to put on a different match for each of the dozen times they're working with each other before the well-scripted PPV match.
posted by Etrigan at 10:02 AM on September 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


Batista yelling "I Hate You Too!" at a child will never not make me happy. Someone needs to make a supercut of the best cheap audience baiting. It would be 80% Rick Rude calling people sweathogs and 20% heels coming out in rival sport franchise jerseys and talking about how the local team will never win the big one.
posted by StopMakingSense at 10:09 AM on September 15, 2013 [10 favorites]


This makes me want to see a (non-mean) comparison of pro wrestling to aikido. In each, there's a desire from both participants for the move to go perfectly.
posted by zippy at 10:12 AM on September 15, 2013


Yeah "I HATE YOU BATISTA" "I HATE YOU TOO!" is where I completely freaking lost it. Man, I love wrestling.
posted by jake at 10:16 AM on September 15, 2013 [6 favorites]


And while you're at it, a comparison to professional politics...
posted by perhapsolutely at 10:21 AM on September 15, 2013


After Jason Collins, I was psyched about the dramas that will unfold as baseball players start to come out of the closet as well. To watch a tense standoff between a pitcher and batter go all the way into a full count ending with a wild pitch and a taunting glare as the batter takes first...

Out Subtitle Wrestling may be even better than Out Baseball. Two exes carefully supporting one another through a well choreographed sequence...loving each other through the pain, the fight. The possibilities for metaphor are numerous.

Sports are just going to get better and better.
posted by Hennimore at 10:24 AM on September 15, 2013


I should add that I HATED wrestling and looked down on its fans until one afternoon, when I couldn't concentrate on my work because my wife was cackling her fool head off in the living room. I came out and on the TV was a bunch of oiled orange dudes slapping each other in the face and yelling over who gets to wear the big shiny belt, and I had this crazy epiphany, sat down with her and watched in amazement, and that was that. It's an important part of our Together Time now.
posted by jake at 10:25 AM on September 15, 2013 [10 favorites]


Someone needs to make a supercut of the best cheap audience baiting. It would be 80% Rick Rude calling people sweathogs and 20% heels coming out in rival sport franchise jerseys and talking about how the local team will never win the big one.

Christian, Edge and Chris Jericho were masters of this. Must be a Canadian thing.
posted by Etrigan at 10:35 AM on September 15, 2013


I am not surprised that there is only one clip in here of a women's match, and I think that speaks for itself.

I have been on-and-off-again with wrestling a few times in my life, but I haven't gone back in a couple of years because I know I won't find Mickie James anymore. :(

Good find on this video. Thank you for sharing.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 10:38 AM on September 15, 2013


StopMakingSense, then there's Ric Flair
posted by deezil at 10:41 AM on September 15, 2013


And in other news, there is tape on the stage of a Broadway production and oftentimes the medieval and fantasy characters on that stage are wearing wireless microphones. I mean, seriously, omg, experience-breaking.

Yep. Wrestling is "fake" only in the sense any theater's fake, and pretends to be real as much as any staged production. It may not be one's cup of tea, but derisively calling it fake misses the point by a mile.

Of course, it is not a sport, in the sense of football, baseball, hockey, or other regulated monopolies with codified rulesets (though those too have their dramas), which is where some of the confusion and cries of fakery arises.
posted by Celsius1414 at 10:47 AM on September 15, 2013


"I hope your parents die!"
posted by box at 10:53 AM on September 15, 2013


Of course, it is not a sport, in the sense of football, baseball, hockey, or other regulated monopolies with codified rulesets (though those too have their dramas), which is where some of the confusion and cries of fakery arises.

One of the most absorbing aspects of wrestling to me is the conflict between the 'real' rules (the conventions and practices which underlie the performance) and the 'fake' rules (the kayfabe rules). It is very interesting to me to watch how the kayfabe rules are broken and upheld to drive the narrative. It's kind of like other life experiences which have hidden rules and agreed-upon falsehoods in its way.
posted by winna at 10:54 AM on September 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


And while you're at it, a comparison to professional politics...

Oh, there is a lot of truth to this, complete with behind the scenes choreography of how two sides are going to debate, and which one's going to win...

Oh, and, previously...
posted by randomkeystrike at 10:57 AM on September 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


"WHERE THE FUCK IS VICKIE!!?"
posted by Liquidwolf at 11:07 AM on September 15, 2013


Yeah, I didn't get that. What was Vickie supposed to be doing as these guys fell?
posted by JoeZydeco at 11:28 AM on September 15, 2013


Can someone explain the ladders to me?
posted by Hennimore at 11:39 AM on September 15, 2013


Ladder match.

Although, that really still doesn't make any sense. But that's the reason.
posted by planetesimal at 11:49 AM on September 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


Can someone explain the ladders to me?

Ladder matches are generally for possession of something -- a championship belt, a briefcase with the contract for a championship match, etc. So that thing is hung about 10 feet above the ring, and the winner is whomever climbs a ladder and grabs it. Obviously, control of the ladder also becomes a key point, because it's usable as a weapon. They're generally highly scripted, especially the end, because it has to be more dramatic than just "One guy is beat down so bad that the other one climbs the ladder." They've become more and more intricate as wrestlers try to top previous matches.

What was Vickie supposed to be doing as these guys fell?

This ladder match was for custody of Rey Mysterio's son, Dominick (Mysterio is the one in the mask). Eddie Guerrero claimed that he was the boy's real father, so of course, as in all things wrestling-related, it came down to a match for the "custody papers" hung above the ring.

Vickie was Eddie's real-life and storyline wife, and she was supposed to push the ladder down as Eddie was about to grab the custody papers. She messed up her cue (I believe it was the first time she ever participated in a match), so she hadn't started to ringside by the time Eddie climbed the ladder. So Mysterio had to stall, which he did by pushing the ladder over (which happened before that clip started) and then pulling Guerrero down so they could set up the spot again, at which point Vickie ran out. They set it all up again, and this time she pushed it over.
posted by Etrigan at 11:52 AM on September 15, 2013 [5 favorites]


Thus setting an important legal precedent regarding the binding nature of guardianship vis a vis ladder match.
posted by StopMakingSense at 11:54 AM on September 15, 2013 [12 favorites]


Also, little known fact here, you can divorce someone by throwing them through a barber shop window!
posted by StopMakingSense at 11:55 AM on September 15, 2013 [6 favorites]


Etrigan: Wow, thanks. Didn't realize it was that elaborate a plot. And props to the wrestlers for improving their way to a recovery.
posted by JoeZydeco at 3:58 PM on September 15, 2013


scaryblackdeath: Mickie James is active in the "Knockouts" division of Impact Wrestling and they just did an all-female PPV special (filmed a while ago and not part of the main storyline continuity, but with a whole bunch of female wrestlers all working properly-good matches). I don't believe she wrestled in that particular show, but I may be wrong.

(Now that I think about it, I just understood why they moved away from using the "TNA" company name as their main brand.)

I don't notice spot-calling very often with Impact/TNA, but they did once pick a poor camera angle while Kurt Angle was getting ready to do the thing with the razor blade (TRIGGER WARNING real human blood. You don't see the actual cutting and it's only at "normal for wrestling".)
posted by BuxtonTheRed at 6:53 PM on September 15, 2013


StopMakingSense: "Also, little known fact here, you can divorce someone by throwing them through a barber shop window!"

I prefer the less violent Citizen's Divorce.

Say "IPSO FACTO COITUS INTERRUPTUS" (Yes, you DO have to say it in capitals) while making a disgusted face and spinning pointed index fingers at the intended.

Barring that, I suppose, you could pile all the proof of ownership for all joint owned items and instruments in a box, hang it high up, and have a WINNER TAKES ALL! LADDER MATCH!!!! (P.S. In case of a cage and ladder match, it is considered perfectly good form and legally safe to offer to split the cost of the chain link with your intended victim. I recommend NOT PPVing it as the proceeds can be the subject of further litigation.)
posted by Samizdata at 9:20 PM on September 15, 2013


The thing that bugs me most about this is that its half "real life" calling of moves and sequences and half "in-universe" character moments.
posted by softlord at 7:27 PM on September 19, 2013


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