Pro wrestling is an act, as many a helpful Internet commenter will point out below any article about this stuff. It’s staged. It’s scripted. The evil Russian bad guys, it turns out, are often actually Americans.
Those of us who are hooked crave the moments when something might be real, when we can’t tell if what we just saw was really in the script. We love those moments when, at the very least, fact and fiction have momentarily found themselves on the same page. There was one of those–one of the best in years–during an online WWE post-game show Tuesday night.
For about three mesmerizing minutes, a perennially hated wrestler, The Miz, verbally thrashed one of the most beloved pro wrestlers of all time, Daniel Bryan. By the next morning, the conventional wisdom online was that the bad guy was in the right. Could that have been what they planned? Did they really mean to go there? Did WWE really air an argument about the impact that a wrestler’s in-ring style has on their health–and make the guy who had to retire because of an apparent brain injury lose the debate?