These posts are a celebration of life and the pursuit of a dream.....and big hair.
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I’m sorry, I didn’t Jeopardy phrase it. WHAT IS WWE.
As in, the answer to my question from in the above title.
Recently, I saw a post on Twitter from Ring of Honor’s Mike Bennett (@ROHMikeBennett) calling out Mark Madden on his article lampooning ROH for not having any wrestlers the likes of a CM Punk or a Daniel Bryan. I could tell it really bothered the big guy, which has gotta be a BIG bother for a guy dating Maria (which I’m sure he’s reminded you of….many times…over and over :p).
The longer than 140 character post (FOLLOW THE RULES, BUDDY!) went a little something like this….
Article by Mark Madden, saying there are no stars in ROH. He said there is no CM Punk or Daniel Bryan, in the company. Funny coming from the guy who has said in the past that Daniel Bryan could never draw money. Let me tell you something, this ROH roster is the best it’s ever been. The entire company is full of stars who bust there ass every show. We are the best wrestlers in the world in every aspect. And to say there are no stars is a f**king insult. Do me a favor, stick to writing articles on stuff you know cause clearly pro wrestling is not one of them #WatchROH
This is a bit discouraging to hear coming off of newsbites suggesting Vince is looking for “the next John Cena” and 2000+ wrestling fans showing up to an Extreme Reunion that failed critically and on a gut level to live up to the desires of ECW hardcores. It trips me out when people discuss wanting things “like they were” or wanting “the next” of something that already happened.
To me, that entire thought process is a losing one with a RARE success rate. To go back to how things were, the conditions and climate have to be recreated down to the slightest detail to make it so that it could thrive like it originally did. How often in life is anything that much the same? And asking for someone or something to be the next of an established entity is placing expectations for it to be just like something that already exists. Why would anyone want that? Who wants to be a clone? Well, I take that back. Apparently, a ton of people are okay with being clones. The proper question would be, how do you get to be that entity people want to be the “next” of being a clone?
There are no CM Punks, Daniel Bryans, etc on the ROH roster because there just aren’t. They were one a kind, unique entities that couldn’t be recreated without the perfected art of cloning. Even then, you’d have to recreate their experiences, pains, frustrations, teachings, nuances, and every other little detail and HOPE it works in the time-frame you’re in to recreate what they mean to us today. What if Punk hadn’t found Straight Edge? What if Bryan wasn’t so hungry to learn and perfect his craft across countless countries to become what he is today? So if it’s that hard for a CLONE, the genetic makeup of that same person to be the next of the person; how selfish is it for you to demand someone completely different to be the next of that established person?
No one’s gonna do it like Thesz, Hackenschmidt, Sammartino, Flair, Hogan, Savage, Steamboat, Hart, Michaels, Undertaker, Punk, Bryan, Rock, Austin, etc did it. Ever. NOT EVER. They stand the test of time because if anybody else had that chance, that shot, that same era of time; it could NEVER be what it was in that expanse of time. Even in a case of an entity like ECW, it was special because it was a blood spatter in a Disney cartoon world. Beer, broads, and bruises in a time of wrestlers with wacky part-time jobs and corny gimmick names. Would ECW have been ECW if it came along in 2001? Could it have contended in 2012? We’ll never know. But the IMPACT was based off the fact that it didn’t clone or wait for a lane. They innovated and ran every other car off the road until it had a lane to itself.
If you aspire to be a copycat of someone else, prepare to wear the label of a clone. You will be forgotten. In some cases, you may stand the test of time. But you’ll always be a testament to how influential the ORIGINAL was. Forever.
So Ring of Honor, EVOLVE, CHIKARA, DGUSA, AIW, Beyond, RESISTANCE Pro, and so many others. I want you to remember Mark Madden’s short-sighted article. I want you to remember the gripes and complaints suits and some fans make about there being no Punks or Bryans. Remember the 2000+ fans who needed a crushing blow to the ego that ECW can’t be ECW EVER again after their Philly experience recently.
Take all that in.
Now remember that the guys fortunate enough to go to the heights of the indy scene and on to the promised land (for some) of contracts heard the same stuff. How they weren’t the next Rock or Austin. Not the next Bret or Shawn. Not the next Hogan or Flair. Not the next Thesz or Sammartino. You know what they did?
Their own thing. Excuse me, WHAT IS their own thing.
And being fresh and new is what made them a star. We don’t need Punks or Bryans because they’re in the biggest company in the world making mad money and sharing the talents that used to be a well kept secret to the entire world. It’s what they deserve and their indy mark can NEVER be forgotten.
We’ve got Johnny Garganos, Colonys, Eric Ryans, ACHs, AR Foxs, Sami Callihans, Adam Coles, Mike Bennetts, Mr. 450s, and countless others doing it on their terms and making noise doing it. I don’t want to see nexts. I wanna see firsts. I want to be moved by something new. All the companies I named and so many others want to give you something NEW to starts a revolution with. Times have changed and so has the thinking. The time is NOW to embrace something new. Andre 3000 said it best when he let us know spaceships don’t come with rear view mirrors. Only forward, only up. Don’t get left behind.
I know who my idols are in this business. Some of them I’ve met, some of them I hope to meet. If I want to be any credit to this business and make my dreams come true, I can’t emulate. I HAVE to do it bigger and better than they could have ever hoped to do it. Differentiate it in a way they couldn’t.
Who’s comin’ with me?