Is WWE "Redneck Anime?"
There's a Tweet that's been on my mind lately. It's haunted me since the first moment I was tagged in it.
There is so much truth in this Tweet. I don't know if "redneck anime" is 100% accurate, but wrestling fandoms are very similar to anime fandoms and wrestling itself shares a lot of tropes with the Japanese entertainment.
Here are a few examples that I can think of off the top of my head:
Fandom-wise, you’ve got your pervy/misogynistic fans (“bring back bra and panty matches, why are the women being pushed so much”), your “this is my waifu” fans (they literally call Alexa Bliss a ‘wrestlfu’ in some places on the Internet, it's just weird), the shippers (Ambreigns and Shesaro both come to mind)... There's more. I mean, you also have your over-critical fans, the casual fans, cosplayers, and the old fans, people who used to watch it and remember certain things, but have since stopped following.
Then when it comes to the product itself, you can find a lot of the same tropes. In anime, the main characters are typically super overpowered. These would be your main eventers and other people who are kept close to the championship scenes. Think Saitama from One Punch Man but instead it’s a dude named Roman Reigns and instead of punching, he just barrels into you and you are dead (however, he does use the Superman Punch so... Roman Reigns = One Punch Man? I dunno, you decide). Point is, you lose and there are very few times people actually defeat these types.
There are filler episodes where it feels like NOTHING happens to progress the storyline. There’s fanservice (although they refrain from using it now, thankfully. I wrote a ten-page paper about this if anyone wants to read it). There’s a couple broody, "mysterious" characters (Bray Wyatt, Bludgeon Brothers, Undertaker) and there’s a couple over-the-top, way-too-peppy-for-this-situation characters (Bayley, The New Day), and again, your main characters whose power rankings almost don't exist because they've skyrocketed that they're basically invincible (John Cena, Roman Reigns, Brock Lesnar, Charlotte, Braun Strowman).There are LOVE TRIANGLES. Ridiculous names for their signature and finishing moves. Talking about their fight just after they’ve had one. There are so many correlations between WWE and anime, I could go on and on. The pro-wrestling world is basically a huge anime/soap opera and what's not to love?