From the NBA to everything in Hollywood, the outbreak of the COVID-19 coronavirus has resulted in the cancellation of basically everything in the entertainment world. But while the coronavirus has forced athletes, actors, and creatives to sit at home and/or self-quarantine, one form of entertainment has bypassed the COVID-19 pandemic and showcased its true qualities in the process: the WWE and its pro wrestlers.
Speaking of the coronavirus, the GOAT team talk about all the events that have been cancelled due to the disease on ‘It’s Been A Big Day For…’ below:
A big part of what makes any WWE event vibe is the presence of a live audience, so you’d think that the logical thing to do when the crowds are taken away as a safety precaution due to the COVID-19 coronavirus is to simply cancel the show. Not quite.
Giving new meaning to the phase “the show must go on,” the WWE pushed forward by having John Cena and Bray Wyatt get in a verbal spat ahead of WrestleMania 36 on WWE Friday Night Smackdown to no audience, and the result was… weirdly engrossing.
Having a backdrop of coronavirus-induced silence at a WWE show is weird enough, but seeing John Cena and Bray Wyatt commit 100 percent to their Wrestlemania 36 promo bit without batting an eyelid at the lack of a crowd is admirable.
There’s something bizarrely Shakespearean in watching John Cena and Bray Wyatt trash-talking each other in an empty WWE ring while the backdrop of the coronavirus looms large, and I mean that in a good way.
Critics of WWE and pro wrestling often chide the sport as being fake, but this whole WrestleMania showcase from John and Bray demonstrates that wrestlers are performers first and foremost, and that there’s some serious performing required to really sell it.
This whole John Cena/Bray Wyatt WrestleMania bit not only showcases the talent and skill required in pro wrestling, it’s also a strong example of how the WWE is arguably the only form of live entertainment that’ll survive the coronavirus pandemic (and any apocalypse for that matter) as it is clear that the sport doesn’t need massive crowds for it to be compelling.
So what does all this mean for WrestleMania 36 then? Since WrestleMania is the WWE’s biggest event of the year and regularly draws in crowds of over 100,000 people, the 2020 edition is going to have to make some changes due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.
The WWE has announced that rather than cancel WrestleMania due to the coronavirus, the show will continue to go on without a crowd and the event will be live-streamed to fans via the WWE Network and pay-per-view instead. The show must go on.
As weird as it is to have WrestleMania with no crowds, John Cena and Bray Wyatt have shown that it is more than possible to put on a good show without a live audience. Maybe this time the WWE can give the pro wrestlers Oscars instead of championship belts because they definitely more than deserve it for the performance they’re going to give at WrestleMania.
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