Updated Info On “Best In The World” Screening

2 Comments on “Updated Info On “Best In The World” Screening”

  1. Hopefully the DVD does well…better than the current state of Punk’s career.
    I have always enjoyed Punk as either heel or face, but in terms of current sociological trends and issues, the “heel” turn is as inexplicable in context of making the CM PUNK character and the subsequent storyline relevant as is everything else that Punk’s been involved in since last autumn.
    The mainstream buzz and wrestling fan firestorm that followed the “shoot” was because what Punk was expressing hit several raw nerves in the country and culture as a whole. Cena was cast in a certain light—the WWE as corporation was cast in a certain light, and Punk himself was cast in a certain light.
    Now you can’t go around breaking the fourth wall in any type of storytelling ALL of the time—but it appears that the fourth wall breach that happened with the shoot and the few stellar weeks following is what connected the most to the overall culture. Here was a man saying “hey, I’m no good guy—but you know what? This company disrespects its workers, props up its icons and propagandizes them to its audience–(Cena)—and I’m not putting up with it anymore”. One does NOT need to be a rocket scientist to figure out why this tirade broke wrestling through the membrane of the mainstream for a short time which recalled a more dynamic era where it was commonplace for wrestling to do so.
    However—we then got an obviously fake “foil” for these real-life frustrations with HHH. Worse—HHH was booked as a “face” in this confrontation. Again–no rocket science needed to figure out why interest started to wane with this. Only those poor saps who agree to call themselves a “Universe” are going to cheer because they’re told to for the guy in a suit “running the company”. Robin Hood has been big for hundreds of years. Bill Gates is already a bad guy. Then we got Johnny Ace. Ditto.
    Somewhere in the mix, Punk began beaming at the fans, and the ENERGY he displayed in the summer of 2011 seemed to be buried under gauze. As well—-Punk physically continued to have the best matches–but not in the main event. Cena was STILL the main event. This is about the time that folks like me stopped watching as much.
    It makes Punk look like a punk, basically. He spoke some good words that people everywhere could relate to, and did so while breaking the fourth wall. However, he then stepped back behind that wall, and we were treated to months of what certainly seemed like his getting right behind the creative decisions of those he originally railed against. From a lackluster feud with Jericho to referring to the “WWE Universe”. a term he had once expertly pulled apart and exposed for what it was, to happily donning HHH’s suit jacket to commentate while all of the “bad” wrestlers showed how bad they were by actually striking against the multi-million dollar company that beyond the fourth wall DOES treat them not as well or as respectfully as more traditional pro athletes—-Punk lost the fire.
    Even now—-Punk never had to be nice, and in fact shouldn’t be—but the connection that people felt for him as someone speaking up in a way in which was cathartic for the millions of folks in this country that are poor, underemployed, treated badly by the emergent corporate mindset of Amerika—is gone. Kicking Lawler in the back of the head or actually cheating to get one over on Cena not only cements Punk back firmly behind a carefully remodeled and reinforced fourth wall where his words and actions mean nothing to the outside world–but also makes Cena once again the face. Listen—I’m sure John Cena is a great guy, and I know that he is not a bad wrestler as some claim. He is however the epitome of everything wrong in outrculture today. He is marketed to younger kids in a propagandist way. He is propped up and booked to keep those under the propaganda’s sway still cheering mindlessly for him. Most importantly, due to these factors, he is no different than Ronald McDonald or any of a number of other corporate icons. Monolithic and above all else stultifying to any dynamism or creativity. Ironically in this case, Cena is allowed to exist past the fourth wall—because most of the reason that his character is kept purposefully stagnant and static is because of the charity work he does with kids. And yeah—charity work connects with people—-but so does standing up and representing the sort of “hero”, whether he’s a “good guy” or not that makes people feel better about their current circumstances in 2012 America. That is what Punk could have been and missed being by quite a bit.
    That’s my rant—and I’ve grown so dissatisfied with wrestling in general that sad to say, I no longer see it as a proper cathartic social medium. I’ll look for my stories elsewhere, where they are told with more intelligence and respect for the audience and their ability to critically think.
    Punk could have truly been “The Best In The World”, and I hope that the current creative circumstances can be overcome someday and that he can get another shot to do it. But for now–it’s dangerous. This kind of faith-shaking in a character can have long-term damage for the performer. This is where Punk could perhaps learn a lesson from Mick Foley, who several times eschewed the big money for knowing that his character and persona were ultimately the only real currency he had with who matters most—the fans. Their respect may not pay off big immediately—but if you want to look back as an old man and see that the sum of your accomplishments have resulted in what can legitimately be called a “Legend”—well—some risks have to be taken.

  2. “To live outside the law, you have to be honest.”—Bob Dylan

    “An outlaw is only a hero defined by the injustice of the laws that he or she lives outside of. Whether people remember him or her as an outlaw or not, as a hero or not, as a martyr or not, as a villain or not, depends entirely on the injustice of the laws and his or her honesty in breaking them”.—JMH

    “Self-destruction is the power without knowing what the function is.”—Immortal Technique

    “When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro.”—Hunter Stockton Thompson

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