Wrestling

La Parka!
You know, I hate wrestling. It personifies everything I hate about the American culture: admiration of abundant violence, conflict, strength - the "bigger is better" -syndrome, the fact that it is scripted but still some people believe it's all true... It reminds me so much of the ideas of the Roman gladiators - and the analogue to ancient Rome is also evident in some other ways that I do not go here. I've tried to watch WWE, and I've tried to understand it (and big thanks to those who helped me on this task), but no: that is something that I do not see worth understanding.

But today, I was introduced to Lucha Libre, the Mexican version of wrestling, where putting up a good show is far more important than winning. It has much more joy of pure movement and acrobatics, and in ways it reminded me of kung fu movies or a circus act. I'm sure that if I understood any Spanish, the dialogue would be as burlesque as in its American counterpart, but there frankly isn't too far of it. There was humour, wit, even affection in the show. The outrageous uniforms and masks (which have a lot of importance: once you lose your mask, you can never wear it again), and even the entrances are far more important than the action. This is not to say that there's no action; in fact, there's a lot more action than you might think: most matches are three-on-three, which guarantees a constant, breathtaking pace of mayhem. Action does not stop, even when the round is over - in fact, the beginning and the end of a round seem to be superfluous concepts, only there for some obscure purpose of scorekeeping.

It was fun. Certainly a fresh, refreshing, and new acquaintance. :-)




Comments

It is rare, but satisfying to see somebody actually to 'get' Lucha Libre, especially after such a short viewing, and choosing to expose the great La Parka to the masses shows excellent taste. :)

Lucha Libre is worth your while if you allow yourself to be seduced by the Latin-American carnival spirit, accept the way-over-the-top costumes and characters of the show for what they are (pure entertainment and joy of the performers) and appreciate the breath-takingly talented Mexican Luchadores and their unrivalled ability to mix martial arts, acrobatics and theatre together. Unfortunaltely shows are hard to find though if you don't know where to look.

--Tuomas, 21-Dec-2003


Hey, thanks for letting me in on this well-kept secret :-). And if it's hard to find, it just means that it is a rare pleasure. I would imagine that too much of it would probably overdose a simple mind like mine rapidly :-).

--JanneJalkanen, 21-Dec-2003


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