Today in class, we will discuss the logic of professional wrestling. I think there are two parts to this topic: the logic of a match, and the logic of wrestling in general. The piece we read from <i>Steel Chair to the Head</i> does a very good job of discussing the in-ring logic of how a "good match" should look. Where can we find someone to explain the logic behind watching two sweaty men in their underwear pretend to beat each other up? It's a bit harder to justify.
We'll start with the easy one. Laurence de Garis has an article entitled "The 'Logic' of Professional Wrestling," which is published in the book <i>Steel Chair to the Head</i>. In his writings, de Garis states that a "good" wrestling match needs three elements: believability, logic, and a story. The three are closely tied together, but basically de Garis thinks that in a good match, the action follows the natural flow of a legitimate sporting event, the wrestlers react in logical and believable ways, and a story is presented with at least the three basic plot elements of exposition, climax, and resolution. It's commonsensical, but when something is missing, the whole match loses that magical feel that we want to experience. In that way, a wrestling match does follow an observable logic from match to match, as well as in a bigger picture view.
As for the logic of watching professional wrestling, people have used the excuse that it's a passion play of life's injustice, or that it's in our carnal nature to be drawn to the flesh-on-flesh violence of wrestling. To wrestling outsiders, the appeal of the ring is a mystery (as I'm sure Marshall can attest), but to the fan, wrestling is a time for entertainment, socializing, and letting loose. When else is it appropriate for grown men and women to jeer and scream profanities at their enemies? I don't understand all of the logic behind wrestling (why don't they wear more clothes?), but I think each person has their own reasons for tuning in week after week. Choosing to watch wrestling requires a personal logic of sorts, because wrestling is not exactly like anything else on television.
Why do you like wrestling?