TO CHAPTER 00
1. The wwe is a publicly traded US corporation with annual revenue exceeding
$500 million. The company owns and produces over 300 live wrestling shows
per year along with numerous entertainment products, which include television
shows, video games, movies, action figures, books, smart phone applications,
magazines, websites, dvds, music, and calendars. The company airs programs
in 30 languages in more than 145 countries (Schneiderman 2008; see also Wall
Street Journal 2010).
2. It is not uncommon for shows to be staged in the same space that the wrestling
school rents for training.
3. In a typical script sketched by the booker, one wrestler dominates for three to
four minutes and then is crushed by the subordinate wrestler for a few minutes,
at which point the originally dominant opponent regains control, maintains it,
and wins the match. As wrestlers might say, babyface shines, heel cuts off baby-
face, heel delivers heat, babyface has a hope spot, heel cuts him off, then a false
finish, and finally babyface wins.
4. In the 1990s, these moral categories were muddled, even inverted in cases, and
the wwe’s “attitude era” was indicative of such a state of affairs. Story lines in
the 1990s began to feature performers (e.g., Stone Cold Steve Austin and New
World Order) whose rude defiance was celebrated and became the basis for fan
support. Stone Cold Steve Austin was known for wearing a T-shirt with “Fuck
fear, drink beer” on it. Nicholas Sammond suggests that the former “popular
entertainment that spanned class lines, like vaudeville and variety television, has
[now] come back as a representation of working- class rebellion specifically tied
to youth culture: a fantasy of impropriety that adolescent boys are meant to use
to thumb their noses at the imagined descendants of June Cleaver” (2005, 134).
5. See La Pradelle on the contrived nature of exchanges at French Farmers Markets,
Grazian on the way urban nightlife transports the consumer, and Benzecry on