Last night I watched Wrestlemania. It might be the first one I’ve ever watched- while a ton of my friends were (and still are) wrestling fanatics I never got much into it myself. I’ll enjoy a match here and there and the stunts some of the guys can pull off are amazing, but the drama and silliness of the whole thing always kept me from getting too far into it. Still, it was a blast. A ridiculous, melodramatic mess, sure, but entertaining as hell.
One of the highlights of the event on this, their 25th year, was supposed to be a match that included Mickey Rourke. He was invited to participate and had already started calling out Chris Jericho, but fans were soon disappointed when he dropped out of the lineup. Why? Because his agents freaked the hell out and told him that it was a stupid career move. That, and the insurance company behind Iron Man 2 (which starts shooting RIGHT NOW, as you’d know if you were following Jon Favreau’s Twitter) just wouldn’t allow him to do it. But that didn’t stop him from getting in the ring.
After Jericho fought and beat a group of former WWE legends (Rowdy Roddy Piper, Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka, Ricky Steamboat and Ric Flair!) he started ripping on Rourke in the audience to come up and wrestle, calling him names and hurting his feelings.
The Wrestler “decided” to take him up on his word, and climbed into the ring- but not to wrestle. No, he started showing off his boxing chops, and with a quick punch knocked him right out. It was as staged as you could get but still, the crowd loved him.
Stupid career move? Nah. Rourke’s more popular than ever and the fans ate it up. Let him have his fun… he’s earned it.