...AND MARKING OUT
Leftovers: Everything's stale. Sorry. I have admittedly been having a harder time than usual keeping this little thing going. I am missing more live TV than ever and finding less and less time to watch my VCR. When I first started reading and submitting guest editorials to the Torch and later to CRZ, the Net seemed like this really fun place. Now, all that seems to be changing, and not in a good way. There's only so much useless negativity that a body can take. There was this shared passion for good TV that resonated across all sites and message boards than now seems log forgotten, or even worse, non existent. That energy and few supportive and critical emails are what help to keep a body going when he really doesn't feel like it. We'll see how long I can keep this up. Work and school are a bitch. Ah, well enough about me, less I get branded as an egomaniac as well.
Welcome to another 10 minutes inside my brain. Enjoy the ride.
Of Jockstraps, Thongs and Baby Oil (or Six Degrees of Separation)
All over the Net and main stream media, there has been a bevy of discussion and sometimes uproar about first HLA and then Billy and Chuck and the whole "do you take this man to be your lawfully wedded husband" stuff. Organizations like GLAAD were at odds over being misled. Parents who watch were miffed about the HLA angle. Net folk are generally growing weary of Lawler's "horny old man who hasn't been laid in three years" stick. Manly guys were rejecting the idea of Billy and Chuck marriage-not to mention the overall angle itself. Seems people are a tad bit upset over the infiltration of homoeroticism into wrestling.
Um, where the hell have all those people been?
Homoeroticism isn't something new to wrestling (and I'm not even talking about gimmicks like Adrian Adonis or his predecessors). It's been here in all its glory since before wrestling was even regionally televised. Oh, am I scaring you? My bad. Did you think you were watching this uber-manly program full of testosterone and sweat and tears and guys fighting the good fight? Hate to burst your bubble, bud, but the overt homoeroticism innate in wrestling is the elephant in the living room. Like masturbation-everybody does it, but nobody wants to talk about it. But it's always there-staring you and me straight in the face. Beyond the backstage stories of Pat Patterson and the Brooklyn Brawler, past the gimmicks of Adrian, Lenny, Lodi, Billy, and Chuck lurks an overtone of homoeroticism that is right there-and yet we only want to discuss it when it's SO large and looming that it calls into question why we even watch this "trash" in the first place.
Do you really think the Vinnie Mac isn't keenly aware of exactly what his programming is? How cool are we old and young men alike who weekly watch as muscle-bound guys with long flowing hair come to a ring covered in water and baby oil, dressed in nothing more than racer trunks and beat the living shit out of each other because somebody betrayed them? How awesome is it of us to cheer passionately at the thought of a grown man placing his ass in another's face so that his "salad can be tossed" on national television? How great is it, that in the middle of a match, in order to win, HHH can yank down Kurt Angle's tights and reveal his thong and we all think it s cool? Isn't that gay? How about that Broncobuster? Now that sure is a gay move, right? Or is it cool?
Is it cool that we hate gay guys so much that we boo Billy and Chuck for liking each other a bit too much? All that stretching and hugging and gift-giving sure got under our skin didn't it? What about when Hogan got whipped with his own back brace? Was that macho or gay? Ah, the manliness of the Strap Match. I mean, if this all doesn't sound like an episode of Queer as Folk, I don't know what does. Why is it okay to watch two grown men grapple and sweat and kiss each other's ass as revenge? What exactly makes that cool? Or is it only cool so long as we don't recognize ot as homoerotic? Why do we yell "punk" and "fag" at Billy and Chuck, but not at ourselves for watching all this in the first place? I mean, if you tweaked the dialogue, this could be an HBO original series in a heartbeat. But we don't want to talk about that or think abut that, do we?
We like to ignore the aspects of the show that make us uncomfortable and relish in the stuff that makes us feel all macho. So, wanting to fight someone because they won't be your manager is a macho thing? "You won't work with me. You've rejected me, so now I'm gonna whip your ass for your own good. You need me to protect you. You need me to guard you." I was there, live, when HHH said that stuff to HBK-his former "best" friend. And if that whole scene ain't queer, what is? But HHH is dating Stephanie, so that makes it okay, right? And Billy and Chuck aren't really gay-they said so themselves and called the wedding off. Whew. I was worried there for a second. And just in case you needed a reminder of when and what you're really supposed to get excited over-here comes horny man Lawler and some HLA or T&A sleazefest.
Pudding matches, gravy matches, evening gown matches, bra and panties matches--they're all Vince's way of trying to balance out the inherent gayness of it all. He attempts to distract us just enough from that elephant sitting over there that we actually forget for a while just how homoerotic is all is. No need to sit in the living room and stare at the elephant if there are chairs in the kitchen, right? I mean, we aren't all of us gay, are we? Oh, I said it again. Sorry. We like to feel macho about watching a bunch of guys-whose physiques we either admire or admonish-cycle through an endless series of carefully (or sloppily) constructed male-male relationships gone bad.
So, what exactly am we allowed to be excited about and still feel comfortable in our own skin? Should we be excited about the stipulations for the Inter-promotional tag match at Unforgiven? Do we ogle when Terri and Stacy fight in their latest Fredrick's of Hollywood outfits? Should we boo Billy and Chuck for being queer or cheer them for being so comfortable with their gimmick? Do we get all excited about Brock Lesnar's mat work on John Cena (he was all over him) or the promise of Angle and Benoit doing more of the same later tonight? And there might be some more HLA tonight right? Either that or Stephanie gets her ass kissed by Bischoff, right? Surely that ain't gay, is it? We all want to see Eric kiss her ass right? Or do we want to see Steph kiss another female? I mean, we couldn't possibly really want to see another stinkface, could we? We wouldn't cheer that, right?
I mean, who wants to watch a show where a bunch of guys (with a few female friends) go about their lives, moving in and out of relationships, arguing and often fighting in their underwear, would we? The series premiere of Queer as Folk is months away, isn't it? And Wrestling is macho, right? YEAH!! We sit and drink beers and mark out and yell and cheer when Eddie does an awesome counter to a rock bottom, right? Only real men watch, right? Because it's cool, not queer!! It's manly!! Hey-are those Jericho's skinny, pale legs? Eww, how gay.
Or something like that.