The decline of the Wildman's promotion ended Drawing Heat on a very pensive note, and really made me reflect on the failures of capitalism in our technological society, and the conspicuously permissive attitude of the government towards companies that are quickly growing to be trusts. There are a myriad of examples in modern industry of trusts that probably have Teddy Roosevelt rolling in his grave, not just in wrestling. Today corporations have enough of a strangle-hold on the government for little to nothing to be done about their treachery, a heel-referee collusion that leaves the population almost powerless in our current system.
Continuing with my post from the other day about the apparent difference in emotional depth between larger and smaller promotions, it is interesting to consider the differences Freedman discusses at the end of his book. The hometown wrestlers spectators knew and identified with changed into blonde-haired, America-loving faces fighting foreigners and sexual deviants. As the scope grows larger to resonate with more and more people, wrestlers have to become less diverse, more emblematic of the country as a whole. While the formulae for wrestling remain the same at their core, detail that would really engender an audience to a wrestler or a promotion have to be sacrificed. This is symptomatic of American culture at large, with Los Angeles and New York setting the pace for the rest of the country.
Theoretically this homogenization of culture will continue, especially with our methods of instantaneous communication, but I believe that eventually the cycle of wrestling will come back around, same with the rest of culture. Wrestling has more than demonstrated it's cyclical nature and ability to endure over thousands of years. And as the hipsters of the world move towards their Goodwills to try and scrounge some sort of identity from the leftovers of the previous generations, I think the country at large will look less towards consumables marketed en masse and more towards things local. In the same vein as farmer's markets, record stores, and obnoxiously-pretentious coffee houses, the smaller wrestling promotion might again be able to build a following of those who are interested in a deeper connection with wrestlers, who would prefer to see wrestling live weekly for a fraction of the cost of the spectacle of a larger show. The Wildman will again have his day in the sun, eventually.