From the desk of Loy Machedo: WWE – Why do people enjoy watching WWE even though it is fake? OR The Secret of Personal Branding & Making Money
I keep getting asked questions on Quora and I do my best to answer them. However, some of my answers get rejected even after making the necessary corrections. Here is one such article where I spent 7 hours writing out – however unfortunately – it was rejected.
So I decided to post in on my website.
If you wish to check my Quora Profile – Click Here -> Loy Machedo on Quora
So this was a question asked to me by a Reader as to Why WWE is fake.
Read it…and also, let me know your thoughts about it.Loy Machedo
The World’s #1 Personal Branding Coach
Why do people enjoy watching WWE even though it is Fake?
I have divided this answer into 4 parts.
1. The Power of Hypnotic Storytelling
2. The Transformation Into a Personal Brand
3. Pushing Inhuman Boundaries For the Brand
4. The Blurred Lines Between Reality & Fantasy
So Why do people enjoy watching WWE?
Here is your answer.
Have you watched the 2013 biographical sports drama film Rush?
Rush is a 2013 biographical sports drama film focusing on the rivalry between two Formula 1 drivers – James Hunt and Niki Lauda during the 1976 Formula One motor-racing season. (1)
Directed by the master of storytelling – Ron Howard and written by Peter Morgan – this movie features stars Chris Hemsworth as Hunt and Daniel Brühl as Lauda. (2)
The way the characters are brought forth into the minds and hearts of the audience – is something you must experience.
James Hunt is portrayed as a playboy who wants to achieve at any cost – even at the cost of his life. He is impulsive, crazy and wild.
While Niki Lauda is portrayed at the hardcore logical, rude, cold and callous highly analytical and disciplined warrior who will never lose and never quit.
And the rivalry between gets so intensified that either man is willing to do anything to ensure he beats the other to win. What makes it spellbinding is that they both are the best of the best in the world!
However the fact is ONLY one man can win…..ONLY one…..
Would it be the wild, fun loving, partying, handsome playboy James Hunt?
Or would it be the seriously disciplined focused and win at all costs Daniel Bruhl?
And just when you thought the rivalry couldn’t get any worse…the unthinkable happens…
James Hunt & Nikki Lauda are neck to neck in their leaderboard points, with Nikki Lauda ensuring Hunt gets his points & victory of one race cancelled because he goes and complains about a technical advantage that James had in one of the race (which was cancelled and then overturned) and then Nikki Lauda ensures that the committee forces James to change his car specifications if he has to continue the season. And this completely destroys James chance to win any race – because now as they are racing every week – James & his team have to build a new car (which takes years of research) within a few days. And every time they come up with a new changed car – the vehicle either gets damaged or breaks down.
Now where playboy James Hunt was neck to neck with Nikki Lauda in terms of winning a world championship – he now slips further and further down the rankings (less points) and now realises he would never win or beat Nikki Lauda.
And that is where Fate takes the most shocking & cruel turn.
At the German Grand Prix, Lauda urges the F1 committee to cancel the race due to heavy rain on the already notoriously dangerous Nürburgring.
But due to the anger and rage that James has against Nikki Lauda – in a public meeting – he mocks and challenges Nikki Laudaa stating that Lauda is afraid of losing. And then James convinces everyone to vote against Nikki.
And then because of which everyone decides to go against Nikki and go ahead with the race.
And then…… at the race…. this happens…..
Nikki Lauda’s vehicle spins out of control, crashes and get engulfed in fire with Nikki Lauda burning alive in the car.
Nikki was supposed to die…but miraculously survives……But that is where the real pain and torture begins.
Everyday he sits in the hospital suffering the burnt face of his. And then he has to also endure having the bandage peel from his face while he has to suffer the agonzing pain of suffering the burn. And he endures this every single day – while watching the TV – looking at James Hunt win all the championships he could have won.
Everyday he watches the Television in pain and agony – both from his physical pain that he is going through – the burnt body…..and even more pain watching his dreams being taken away from him because his rival is now winning every race.
And in anger, pain and rage he watches as he knows – had James Hunt not rallied everyone to race that day – he wouldn’t have been in this condition now.
And then the most horrifying part of it all….after 28 days, the doctor lets him know he would have to vacuum his lungs with the fluid, blood and pus that has filled inside his lungs if he has to live.
And the process involves inserting an arms length metallic tube down his throat – while he is awake and conscious and drain the liquid out – an extremely painful, horrible and absolutely uncomfortable process – which people cannot endure.
Nikki Lauda tell the doctor to not only go ahead but not to stop the process even if he screams….
And in the scene that follows – you can see him clutching the bed and blanket with all fingers as he screams in pain for minutes and minutes….
While his wife stands outside listening to the man she loves so dearly suffer…..And Nikki Lauda does this….while his eyes are open – watching the race happening…watching James Hunt taking away all his dreams away from him….
To everyone’s shock and surprise….he overcomes all this…And then if you think it was all over…..there is this particular scene that is really powerful….
Nikki’s head and face swollen because of he has had his face burnt….And even though he is sick and suffering….and still not healed – there is only one and only one thing on his mind – to come back to the racing circuit…..
So as he is standing there holding his Formula 1 Racing Helmet – which will by no means fit his head and face because it is swollen to twice its size – as he is grunting in pain trying to make it fit…His wife stands there and says…Please stop.
Nikki Lauda stops….looks at his wife….and then after a moment of silence….he tells his wife – “If you love me, you won’t say a word”…….
Then there is silence…..
And then proceeds to do what he really shouldn’t be doing….forcing the helmet to fit his head because he wants to go back to his dream….
And there – time stands still as you watch this young man grunt in pain, scream silently and not stop but force this tight helmet on to his face and head – which is still super sore, not healed, burnt and super sensitive on to his head….
A scene I have watched again and again and again and again…..
And then one day as James Hunt is getting ready to race his next race where he knows he will win the race…..he notices no one is surrounding him – like how they usually do – neither the reporters, nor the press and no one…..And everyone is looking at one particular direction…..So he wonders what is happening….
and then there is a shocker…He finds out Nikki Lauda has come back….And when James Hunt looks at him…He has tears in his eyes….because he knows in a way he was responsible for all this…..Even though he was his competitor and he wanted to win at any cost- he still loved and cared for that man….
And he watches the scars, the burnt face and the result of him agreeing to race that day……
And then finally when the Greatest Race of their lives comes into play….Fate plays a cruel game….
The final race of their lives at the Japanese Grand Prix.…. and the weather is exactly like that day at the German Grand Prix at Nürburgring.
There is only 3 points difference Nikki Lauda and James Hunt.
Only one can win.
And just moments before the start – where they both know…..that this final race will decide lives forever…And maybe – maybe possibly one of them may even die….The most powerful scene among them all comes alive….
Nikki Lauda looks ahead to James Hunts car…And James Hunt turns back to see his arch nemesis….
Both know – only one can win….only one can win…..
But in a moment of total respect…..Nikki Laud raises his hand out of respect for his greatest competitor and opponent…..
And James Hunt raises his hand out of respect for his greatest opponent and competitor….
Only one will win…..And they have no idea who.
So what happens next?
I seriously feel you should watch this movie to know this.
But before you do – consider what just happened….
I gave a story of 2 characters.
I replayed their story in a rather dramatic fashion adding even more spice, drama and substance to an already replayed story that everyone knows the final outcome to.
But you notice something?
There was a battle between good and bad, between hopes and dreams, between reality and positivity, between overcoming inhuman hurdles versus the glory of victory.
This my friend is…..
Point number 1)
The Power of Hypnotic Storytelling
You were so drawn into how I replayed this story for you, with its images, its moments, the words, the pictures, the dialogue and the scenes – you were drawn deeper and deeper into this story.
This is exactly what WWE does.
The pageantry, the imagery, the characters, the storyline, the colors, the visual appeal all form each character. And each character connects to one segment of the audience.
In fact, have a look at this picture
Each character is different…
- The colors
- The entrance music
- The finishing move
- The dress sense
- The style of talking
- The movement
- The dialogues
- The storyline
- The characteristics
- The values
So where the Character Dean Ambrose is impulsive and carefree (represented by his white banyan and relaxed jeans) which is a stark contrast to the carefully planned out power hungry Triple H; on one hand you can have John Cena is the typical American Boy signified by his Cap, Knee Length Jeans, Sports Shorts and the good Chocolate Boy style, in start contrast to Brock Lesnar who is a powerhouse who just doesn’t care. Even if you compare the dark characters like The Undertaker who is a deadman and doesn’t care if you are good or bad but he owns the yard – versus Sting who is a Dark Vigilante who only fights Evil and Bad.
So now the questions comes…. if people know these are made up characters…..then why do grown up people watch it?
If children would watch – it makes sense…But adults???
Let me put it into perspective.
Look at this 20 year old Indian Guy.
Looks like an absolute idiot.
Do you seriously see a person with such a face, look, mannerism and personality worth anything?
He is just a chubby faced immature idiot who will never amount to anything. In fact his profession is that of standing in the toilets and cleaning the toilets after people leave the rest room – after having defecated in the small space.
With all the stink and dirty – watching and cleaning the urine and watching the excrement of others – and cleaning it all…..do you seriously think he has any future?
In fact you must be shocked and wondering – how dare I bad mouth this young man. Isn’t in wrong?
Well it is not.
And how I am so sure about this fact?
Because this young man…..was me.
I was this young man went through this transformation…
And this is where I am where I am today.
Look don’t get me wrong. This is not me trying to brag of show off.
I do not have the education you have. I am an educated school dropout who started his career cleaning toilets. I do not have the upbringing that you have or the talent you possess. And sadly – Forget having a creative team to transform me to where I am today….. I didn’t even have anyone to give me proper upbringing…..
But all I had was knowledge about what makes an ordinary person – into an addictive extraordinary brand.
And that is why even though right now – What you see as this Tattooed Freak
here…. is actually what I really am….
In the same way….The WWE is also in the game business…
Take for instance The Undertaker – this is how he looks inside the ring….
Or like this
But in real life, Mark Calaway looks nothing like this….because he is like this
or something like this….
Or take for example the psychotic and crazy – KANE – In the ring he looks like this
or something like this…
But in real life….this is what Glenn Thomas Jacobs is….
Here is with his baby
Or finally the most shocking WWE superstar among them all…The Boogeyman
Who looks like otherwise…..
But in real life is Martin Wright – one of the top executives working for WWE
And all this comes under one thing and one thing alone –
Point number 2)
The Transformation Into a Personal Brand
It is like this is not you but you become this NEW YOU in order to sell yourself, gain acceptance and gain a new fan base or customer base.
Think about this….
HAVE YOU EVER COME ACROSS someone who
- Trains Ph.D holder
- Teaches CEO’s & Directors
- Reads 1 Book every 3 days related to Psychology, Neuroscience, Business, Marketing, Sales
- Conducted workshops in Fortune 500 companies
- Is a School Dropout?
- Failed in almost everything?
- Started his career a Toilet Cleaner?
AND GETS PAID MORE THAN Normal Average Hardworking People who work more than 12 hours, 6 days a week?
The answer is no.
Simply because the UNIQUENESS & ORIGINALITY in everything I mentioned above….
- The colors
- The music
- The dress sense
- The style of talking
- The movement
- The dialogues
- The storyline
- The characteristics
- The values
Are totally unique.
In fact…the GREATEST in the WWE is not anyone whom you may consider a is a wrestler – it is not
It is not the legendary Hitman Bret Hart…
It is not the Charismatic Rock…nor is it the greatest wrestler among them all….
The Immortal Hulk Hogan…… The greatest among all of them is the guy we all LOVE TO HATE…
Vincent Kennedy McMahon Now he may portray himself to be this on camera….
but the reality is – he is by far the greatest brains in this history of Sports Entertainment….
Think about it….He is a Genius! Because in real life he is this….
A Billionaire Businessman who not only convinced his whole family but the entire roster of talent and the entire world – That Wrestling – Even if Fake – Was Entertainment worth watching. (3)
However, then comes the BILLION DOLLAR QUESTION…
If say for example everyone knows Mark Calaway is the Undertaker and Glenn Thomas Jacobs is KANE why do people – that too GROWN UP ADULTS still watch the WWE?
WHY WOULD GROWN ADULTS WATCH WWE WHEN ITS STILL FAKE???
Why would they pay $50 to watch a pay-per-view?
Do you know that WWE’s youtube channel has nearly 16 Billion views??? (4)
Why in the world Grown Adults in millions and millions would spend time watching this???
Here is your next answer….
POINT NUMBER 3)
Pushing Inhuman Boundaries For the Brand
Yes, it is fake and scripted….
But can you fake the following….
The 1998 Hell in a Cell match between the Undertaker versus Mankind (Mick Foley) and where Mankind fell from a 16 foot cage & then (5)
Fell through the cage on to the hard WWE ring – in an unplanned accident that nearly killed Mick Foley?
AND THEN CONTINUED FIGHTING EVEN THOUGH HE HAD BROKEN HIS BODY IN 4 PLACES???
It was so shocking that there is even a Wikipedia page dedicated to this infamous moment….
And then at WWE Summer Slam 2000, (6)
Shane McMahon Fell Off The 50 feet high Titantron BACKWARDS – where anything could have gone wrong…. (do you think you would attempt this?)
In 2003, Wrestlemania 19
Brock Lesnar’s Moonsault – which nearly ended with him landing on his head – which could have broken his neck and killed him or
WWE Triple H (Paul Michael Levesque) InjuryIn 2001, in an episode of RAW when Triple H (Paul Michael Levesque) tore his quad, But even after injuring himself very seriously – still continued the match for the sake of the fans?
When even the greatest wrestlers like Stone Cold whose accident on August 3rd, 1997 was so bad that he would never be able to walk for months – and eventually would have to retire from Professional Wrestling
or at its most shocking…
When wrestlers like Owen Hart risk death just to please fans…He died in the ring May 23, 1999 when the cable that was supposed to bring him from the roof snapped and killed him…
(There are many more such moments and even worse – which I don’t think would be advisable to post here as they are very graphic & stomach churning like Sabu landing on his head or Psycho Sid breaking his leg)
Yes…. Wrestling is Fake but the Injuries are real.
And what makes it so powerful is…even though all these professional athletes are injured, hurt, in pain or not feeling up to the mark….they still perform for their fans….even to the point of risking their lives FOR THE SAKE OF THE BRAND OR THE IMAGE THEY HAVE CREATED….
This is called… Pushing Inhuman Boundaries For the Brand
The last part comes down to not only playing the part but living the part for the rest of your life….
People who lived through the 80’s know the excitement and enthusiasm when wrestlers of the 80’s like
- Randy Savage
- Andre the Giant
- Jimmy Snuka
- Roddy Piper
- Mr. Perfect
- The Ultimate Warrior
- The Iron Shiekh
- Ted DiBiase
- Junkyard Dog
- Greg Valentine
- George The Animal Steele
They not only were their brand onscreen, the took their brand offscreen as well. Learning their lines, researching what worked well and what didn’t work well with the brand, practice storylines, practiced moves, studied and experimented with new wrestling formats and even went around the world promoting and being the brand – WHILE living normal likes …. It was a 24/7 exercise. An Obsession. And a lifestyle.
It grew into their lives so much, that everything from suffering the injuries and joints ache where by they would be addicted to pain killers and drugs, to being so affected by the character they were going to portray that they lost sight of who they were – is today a strong reminder of how your mind starts believing even the lies you give it.
Which is where the placebo effect and the mysterious powers of the mind still fascinate scientists.
And this is where the final point comes in.
Where you give something so much – so much – That The Lines Blurred Between Reality & Fantasy.
Which is why so many times after an individual has worked with a company for many years – like that of a Chief Engineer, or Army Sergeant or War Solider – when they go back into their normal world – they never feel the same ever again.
Having lived ‘another life’ with so much obsession, fervor, passion, interest and madness – the lines between what is fake, what is real, what is fantasy and what is reality – no longer exist.
When many people look at me they get fascinated by me.
On one hand, I am this foul mouthed, shabbily dressed, out-of-shape, attention seeking tattooed freak who cannot fit into society.
On the other hand, when I work I put in so much obsession, passion, research and value that people are ready to pay me top dollar for my coaching, guidance and mentorship.
It seriously doesn’t make sense to people.
But what people do not realize that is this is not a secret.
What I have done is taken 4 basic principles used by the WWE to achieve incredible success in what I am doing today.
And that is why if you see each and every post of mine it always has the 4 following points.
- The Power of Hypnotic Storytelling (which I use in every question)
- The Transformation Into a Personal Brand (I share how I was before versus what I have achieved today)
- Pushing Inhuman Boundaries For the Brand (How many people you know are willing to tattoo their entire face & body, give up their religion, break off from society, parents and even love and even leave millions of dollars worth of business to live a life of their dream?)
- The Blurred Lines Between Reality & Fantasy (Even people who know me since childhood – cannot figure out what I say is Loy Machedo whom they once knew as a child to the Controversial Loy Machedo that is in front of the Media)
Yes, WWE is Fake (7) ….But it is because they have pushed themselves to such a level, such a limit and to such an extent for so many years for the sake and happiness of millions of fans that even today Grown Adults watch the WWE as a source of Entertainment, Enjoyment, and Pleasure.
So the next time you watch a grown adult watching WWE with the Excitement, Enthusiasm, and Energy as if it were real…..remember these 4 points.
- The Power of Hypnotic Storytelling
- The Transformation Into a Personal Brand
- Pushing Inhuman Boundaries For the Brand
- The Blurred Lines Between Reality & Fantasy