Ever hear the old saying of â<80><9c>too much of a good thing is a bad thing?â<80> It can have many meanings like â<80><9c>too much soda will rot your teeth,â<80> â<80><9c>too much exercise will wear you down,â<80> or it could even mean â<80><9c>things get boring after a while.â<80>
In wrestling, all too often, we hear the phrases of: â<80><9c>Iâ<80><99>m tired of this;â<80> â<80><9c>This is stale;â<80> or â<80><9c>Move on the something better,â<80> etc. etc. Most times, these phrases are from fans complaining about ongoing feuds, boring characters, and stale angles. And with todayâ<80><99>s wrestling product, you canâ<80><99>t blame them for thinking so.
Yet we never hear about the other side of those phrases; that side being how we are all affected deep down inside. What is really making us turned off by wrestling today? Do we simply not like it? Is the product really as bad as we make it out to be?
Or does it not AFFECT us anymore.
There, is the key notion.
Those who have followed my columns series over the past year and a half know that Iâ<80><99>ve gone into theory after theory about why wrestling isnâ<80><99>t as good as it once was. For the most part, it came down to the fact that it is our perspective that changes, not the actual wrestling. For instance, many of us were huge Stone Cold Steve Austin fans in middle school. Now we look at his performances as repetitive and clichÃ©. Why is that? Well, some of us got older. Others figured out how everything really worked in wrestling. And others knew that the magic just wasnâ<80><99>t there anymore.
Now, Iâ<80><99>m not saying wrestling is for kidsâ<80>“far from that. But what I am saying is that our perspectives change in life all of the time. Often, this is because we get so accustomed to one thing, we forget about other things. When we see something so much, it doesnâ<80><99>t affect us as much as it did the first time.
This is when desensitization takes over.
And this is one of the problems for many wrestling fans. But, Tim, what exactly is this desensitization you are talking about? Well, allow me to explain.
As an example, many of us have realized that in ECW, there have been less and less â<80><9c>extreme rulesâ<80> matches as time has gone on. The reason being, or so we have to presume, is that they lost their luster. While many fans donâ<80><99>t agree with that at all, I have actually do agree with that decision. The powers that be in WWE have a point. How many times can you possibly see someone smashed through a table without getting bored? How many chair shots can one person see before yawning? Or blood?
The fact is that the more and more we see someone busted wide open with a steel chair and then slammed through a table, the less and less it affects our senses. The first time we see a violent wrestling maneuver, we can react in a multitude of ways. We can be shocked, scared, exhilarated, or even frustrated. But most importantly, emotions run wild at the thought of a wrestler being beaten like that.
Yet how would a similar scene affect you 5 or even 3 times more? Each time, you would react less and less until eventually you were desensitized to the point where it didnâ<80><99>t even matter. You might as well be watching cute, cuddly teddy bears dancing together in a bright green meadow. Things just lose their luster has time goes on.
In essence, the more things you see, the less they become interesting. And this is one of the biggest problems today, not only in wrestling, but in all media as well. Surveys and research on media effects have all come to the conclusion that the more often a media consumer views violence, profanity, or sex, the less and less the drama affects them. It has come to the point that people are so desensitized by violence that they go out and commit violent crimes because subconsciously, they think itâ<80><99>s ok.
Now, Iâ<80><99>m not saying wrestling will make you a crazed manic who DDTâ<80><99>s old ladies on the streets, but there is a significant impact on the way wrestling affects us over time. We become less and less interested. Think back to the 70â<80><99>s and 80â<80><99>s. A piledriver through a table back then would be the start of a major angle that would see a wrestler out of action for weeks, selling the maneuver. Now, we see this in matches as just another spot that doesnâ<80><99>t even lead to a finish.
So not only does wrestling not affect the viewer as much, but the actual wrestlers themselves are less likely to be affected by the violence. It has been an unfortunate turn of events that were brought on by the Monday Night War and the advent of ECW in its heyday.
All in all, the next time you think wrestling has gone down hill and is boring, sit back and re-think that. Sure, you might be right, but think back to how awesome you though a Rock Bottom was in 1999 compared to how you view the maneuver now. Youâ<80><99>ll see my point.
Wrestling has desensitized all of us, and itâ<80><99>s up to us to be aware of the affects it has on our sub-conscience.
Thanks everyone for your patience, and I hope you keep reading!
Feedback is most welcome:
Until next time this has been From the Eye of the Dragonâ<80>¦