If you think all wrestling fans are 8-year-olds and southerners, brace yourself for the flying clothesline of knowledge: many geeks love professional wrestling as well. Smart people who obsess over comic books, and attend large conventions about said books, also enjoy the WWE. As we approach Wrestlemania 25 this April, let us shine a spotlight on a wrestling demographic that gets overlooked. Pro wrestler Jimmy Jacobs told MTV why he named his signature move "The Contra Code," after a famous video game cheat code. "I think wrestling just attracts a lot of nerds," he said. In college, I was surprised when all my nerdy friends wanted to watch pro-wrestling. At first, I thought they were just being ironic, but they knew all the player's names and histories, the current story-lines, and were shelling out real money for the pay-per-view matches. That's true devotion. So why do some nerds enjoy wrestling? I think there are lots of reasons. Like superhero comics, wrestling is a soap opera about muscle-bound "heroes" and "villains," with larger than life personalities, fighting a seemingly endless battle. For a group stereotyped as introverted weaklings, seeing these guys in action over-exaggerates the definition of manhood to the point where nerds can enjoy it.
Wrestling is driven by written narratives rather than stats and strength, which appeals to a dork's love of story speculation. Nerds want to predict what'll happen on Lost and figure out what the next Star Trek movie is about based on rumors. Week after week, wrestling evolves its characters and takes them in odd directions, like when Hulk Hogan famously did a "heel turn" and became a bad guy in the mid-90's. There's also plenty of merchandise to collect, including action figures and video games, and the WWE universe is vast and full of details to memorize. Taking all these factors into account, pro-wrestling is actually the perfect nerd sport. Now that I've started watching, I'm kind of hooked. My favorite wrestler is Santino Marella, the Italian villain who only wins matches by accident or with the help of his girlfriend Beth Phoenix. I just read his Wikipedia page and made him my desktop background. *Snort*?
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