Among pro wrestling’s staples of yesteryear that faded into obscurity was the sniveling heel manager. Texas Senator Ted Cruz seems intent on bringing it back, albeit repurposed for the political theater.
Firstly though, dear reader, allow me to assuage any concern that the following is a political diatribe. The Open Man is sticking to sports (entertainment) on this one. No matter his political leaning, Ted Cruz’s tragicomic challenge for actor Ron Pearlman to wrestle Ohio Congressman (and embattled former Ohio State wrestling coach) Jim Jordan is equal parts hilariously pathetic and a grim reflection of government’s current ecosystem.
A common wrestling trope popular in the 1980s featured a conniving manager who functioned as a mouthpiece for villainous wrestlers. These characters launched into bombastic promotion of their clients, ran down the heroes, and often cheated in matches. Oftentimes their presence added a dimension to rivalries; various Southern promotions like Georgia Championship Wrestling and Jim Crockett Promotions often culminated feuds with the good guy winning five minutes facing the cowardly manager.
This became a common booking practice because it was so damn effective. Who wouldn’t want to see a loudmouth hiding behind a much tougher crony get his comeuppance?
This seems to be an important point of the heel manager gimmick that either Ted Cruz, or whomever Ted Cruz pays to tweet under the name Ted Cruz, failed to take into account — along with the basic Twitter rule that Likes are publicly visible. Then again, maybe he does, hence the lame stipulation of a $10,000 donation to charity instead of offering to be stuffed into a weasel suit.
Preposterous displays from Washington that feel ripped from ’80s pro wrestling cross party lines. While Ted Cruz’s bizarre promo cut on Ron Pearlman has much more of a WWF feel, it’s difficult to have not seen the below…
White people are doing the most while still somehow refusing to do the bare minimum.
The Kente cloth has sent me to the upper room.
Exhibit A: pic.twitter.com/bDJQHycges
— David Dennis Jr. (@DavidDTSS) June 8, 2020
…and immediately think of the insulting repackaging of One Man Gang as “Akeem the African Dream.”
Meanwhile, clamoring that began semi-jokingly four years ago urging Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson to run for president gained volume last week when the former Most Electrifying Man in Sports Entertainment IG’d an inoffensive statement on Black Lives Matter.
With all due respect to Johnson — a seemingly genuine man — we don’t need any more WWE Hall of Famers running for office anytime soon. And we really don’t need those already holding office behaving like they’re Bobby “The Brain” Heenan.