The basic question is, "How should fans behave at live wrestling shows?" The specific issue at hand is, "How do we feel about self-indulgent crowds?"
In the post from the other day the self-indulgent crowd reared it's head by chanting "Husky Harris" at Bray Wyatt. There are several schools of thought on this issue:
- The crowd is bad and should feel bad.
- The promotion is treating us like we are stupid if they expect we won't pick up on and point out that a guy has been repackaged.
- As long as they are chanting and having a good time, what does it matter?
The blatant repackage argument is interesting in this case because I have heard many people on the 'net say they didn't realize that Bray Wyatt was Husky Harris. To me, that undermines that particular defense of the Baltimore crowd.
Lastly, I have the hardest time arguing that point. If wrestling is supposed to be an outlet to vent then why do I care so much about how a crowd chooses to entertain itself? While I know this is a completely logical position, I have a hard time accepting it. In part because regardless how I feel on an intellectual level, the behavior still turns me off.
There are a couple of things that make me feel this way though. One is that the Wyatt Family is pretty frigging awesome. Their debut delivered and I hated to see a crowd choose that moment to "get themselves over." The other issue is that it doesn't really impress me that you know a guy has been repackaged. Most of us do, or we don't, who cares? I think part of it is a mentality that modern-day wrestling fans have where they don't want to "get worked." Like it's more important that they demonstrate that they are "smart" than it is to enjoy a show. It's OK to get worked guys and gals, that's what makes wrestling great. When stories, characters, matches, etc. are so good that we don't want obsess about how illogical an Irish Whip is. Let go and enjoy the show, I say.
Ultimately I'm conflicted about the whole deal. My reaction on Monday night was 100% completely negative towards that crowd. The more I thought about it the more I thought that maybe I'm the problem. At this point I may just have to settle for, "They aren't wrong, but I don't have to like it." That crowd's reaction was every bit as annoying as those stupid "WHAT?!" chants that were hilarious for two shows back in the early-00s.