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The Question: What is the basic appeal behind professional wrestling?

June 20, 1955
June 20, 1955

Table of Contents
June 20, 1955

Events & Discoveries
Spectacle
  • Each year the third week in June produces both America's oldest rowing classic and the battle for national crew honors

  • In rowing's big week, Penn and Cornell are favorites in the transplanted Poughkeepsie Regatta at Syracuse; one day earlier Yale meets Harvard in the 90th renewal of their four-mile rowing classic at New London

Garden Party
Boxing
Preview: The U.S. Open
Horses: Big Weekend For Two Champions
Tarpon
Tennis
Yesterday
Acknowledgments
19th Hole: The Readers Take Over
Pat On The Back

The Question: What is the basic appeal behind professional wrestling?

SHELDON TANNEN, New York
Restaurateur
"Pro wrestling is a hippodrome, with the grunts and groans of the wrestlers and the shrieks of the spectators to give it stark reality. It's a great show that fascinates its fans, rough enough to seem authentic and funny enough to amuse. It's comedy and drama, with the laughs following hysteria."

This is an article from the June 20, 1955 issue

KENDRIC M. MORRISH, Oakland, Calif.
Vice-President
American Trust Co.
"It goes back to P. T. Barnum's famous crack, 'A sucker is born every minute.' The wrestlers have their tongues in their cheeks, but spectators take it seriously. I've seen women burn the wrestlers' bare feet with cigarets, poke them with umbrellas and actually stick them with hatpins."

SAMUEL WILDER KING
Governor of Hawaii
"Pro wrestling lets people forget themselves and their troubles. In these tense, fast-moving days it offers them a most useful form of relaxation. Spectators have the time of their lives watching the clowning and all that goes with wrestling. Showmanship only adds to wholesome recreation."

BOB EDGE, Brownville, Me.
Sportsman
"Pro wrestling is action and comedy—real I show business. The old wrestlers, Zbyszko, Strangler Lewis, Jim Londos and Hackenschmidt were wonderful, but they wouldn't draw today. The comedy and the winner of a bout are prearranged, yet it is so well done that the audiences take it as gospel."

BOB WEITMAN, New Rochelle, N.Y.
Vice-President
American Broadcasting Co.
"The wrestling game has a strange and strong appeal for women. You'd expect the reverse to be true and I've often asked myself the reason. I think the primary appeal is physical. Women respond emotionally to sheer, brute strength in action. The proof? Female wrestlers leave women cold."

GEORGE VANDERBILT, Honolulu
Scientist
"People want to be entertained. That's the I primary appeal. It's I amazing to observe the I number of prominent persons in business and in society who have their favorite wrestlers. Many of them take these bouts seriously even though they must be aware of the clowning and the humbug."

MARTHA STEWART, Bardwell, Ky.
Singer-actress
"It's fun. The buildup is wonderful. Gorgeous George's valet sprays the ring with perfume before his entry. True, the wrestlers do a lot of clowning, but when they get down to business it's a skilled contest and extremely exciting. The nastier the brutes are, the better we women like it."

ILLUSTRATIONSEVEN PHOTOS

NEXT WEEK'S QUESTION:

Race tracks in France are experimenting with women jockeys. Would you bet on a girl jockey?