Great-ing Gimmicks – A response

Great-ing Gimmicks – A rebuttal

This is a response to a column by David Brashear which you can read by using the following url http://wrestling.insidepulse.com/articles/67930/2007/06/06/greating-gimmicks-of-the-past-the-importance-of-kayfabe.html

First off, I want to say in this column that I am not a fan of Vince Russo’s warped idea of “shoot” promos and angles. Quite reasonably, I hate them, but I have an even bigger problem with Kayfabe that I thought I’d mention briefly here and explain what Kayfabe means to me as a fan.

In many ways, I love Kayfabe. I watch wrestling to get into the story and suspend my disbelief and without Kayfabe that isn’t possible. During a wrestling show, Kayfabe should be strictly adhered to from bell to bell. However, once the final bell tolls and the shows over Kayfabe should go away with it. I’m a guy who likes going to watch wrestling and I love talking to wrestlers after a show about what I’ve seen. I have respect for thw wrestlers to know that they are talented people who can create a story in a ring for me to follow. Wrestling really is an art form and I will fight anyone on that point. But once the show ends I want to talk to the real people and not their wrestling characters. I believe in separating reality from fiction. If I was talking to Harrison Ford about The Fugitive I want to talk to Harrison Ford and not Dr. Richard Kimble. It’s reasons like this why I hate Kayfabe.

A lot of the current interviews and features on WWE DVD’s, notably the Four Horsemen one, have wrestlers talking in Kayfabe. Arn Anderson talks about all the Horsemen’s activities as if they were real and not part of a storyline. This really annoys me because I see it as an insult to my intelligence. When I go to see a wrestling show I don’t stand up and yell “None of this is real, these guys don’t really hate one another”. I show the wrestlers respect for their abilities and art form so I expect them to show similar respect to me. Once the show ends, the illusion ends with it for me and that’s just the way I view the world. During the show it is imperative that Kayfabe is in effect but when the last pinfall is counted and the last bell rung, Kayfabe should disappear along with it.

I know a lot of wrestlers who would read this would be shocked and angry at my comments but it’s the way I feel. I just wish that wrestlers and people within the wrestling business would treat fans with more respect. Many a good conversation with a wrestler has been ruined for me because they insist on talking about guys, who I KNOW they like, as hated enemies. I just want to compliment them on their performance and tell them how much I enjoyed the show but I can’t because they are determined to live in this dream world they’ve created. Sure, if the wrestlers are still in the building after a show has just ended I can understand but once the show is long over so should be the act.

This links in to David’s column, which I pretty much completely agreed with on many points, especially the Hannibal analogy. What I would like to ask David would be if he met Anthony Hopkins and Hopkins insisted on acting like Hannibal Lecter how would that me him feel? Stupid? Insulted? Confused? Maybe all of the above? David is right, we shouldn’t have the fact that wrestling isn’t “real” rubbed in our faces. All I’m saying is we shouldn’t have it forced down our throats that it is.