WWE: The Lunacy of Josh Mathews' Potential 'Lawsuit' Against the Company

Tom Clark@tomclarkbrFeatured ColumnistSeptember 6, 2012

photo by wwe.com
photo by wwe.com

The Greek philosopher Aristotle once said that the only difference between a lawyer and a steaming bucket of crap is the bucket.

He did.  What are you, a philosophy major?

Anytime “lawyers” are involved in pro wrestling, especially WWE, it becomes an awkward moment, a scenario that for me, has never made much sense.

It’s only storyline, of course, and for that reason, it often gets excused.  This is mostly because that we as fans have seen it happen so many times over the years, that when the angle rears its ugly head, it gets little to no reaction, other than the usual head shaking.  Besides, it’s all about adding to the overall drama, right?

But now the legal system is being brought to light again, this time courtesy of WWE commentator Josh Mathews.  Here we go again.

For two weeks now, Kane, who has historically not been the most even tempered character in WWE, has run like a freight train through Mathews as if he wasn’t there.  The two assaults are all part of Kane’s struggle with anger management, as he just cannot seem to keep his rage in check.

I guess having a reanimated corpse for a brother combined with a crazy obsession for fire will do that to you.

Like Dr. Evil’s appearance on Jerry Springer, fans got Kane’s twisted, hilarious life story in full detail recently, reminding us all of the insanity that lies in WWE.

Part of that insanity is the assertion on WWE.com that perhaps Josh Mathews may in fact sue the company over unsafe working conditions.


Okay, I’ll say it.  We’re all thinking it, right?

This is pro wrestling.  This is WWE.  If you’re Josh Mathews, you are surrounded by big, jacked up, ticked off gladiators, who settle their differences by bashing each other in the head.  And, honestly, Josh should know that.  After all, he used to be one of them.

Well, maybe not quite as big.  Or jacked up.  Or ticked off.

The point is, he knows what he’s getting himself into.  He knows the deal.  And, he knows that as the guy with the mic in his hand who is supposed to question the Superstars following matches, there is every possibility that he will run into a heel that may not be in the mood for talking.  He should fully understand that he could be a target.

Enter Kane, who was so mad that he took out his aggression on the ever helpless Mathews, by attempting to realign his spine.  

Hi back, have you met canvas?  

So, following one of the best choke slams in recent memory, and kudos to Josh for that one, the former Tough Enough star could be taking the Big Red Monster to court.

Just imagining Kane on the witness stand is making me flinch a little.  Anger management class is one thing, but in a courtroom?

“The prosecution calls Harold, your honor.”

I don’t know.  That might be good.

Here’s the deal.  We all know that yes, it’s storyline.  Josh, thanks to his size, the fact that he is not an in-ring performer, and has a likable personality, makes him a sympathetic figure.  Of course he would be in the crosshairs of heels much bigger than him, and be punished accordingly.

It’s a time honored way of getting heat in WWE, and has been for years.  Just ask Jim Ross, Michael Cole, and of course, Jerry Lawler, who was just put to task inside of a steel cage against CM Punk.

Though he is a veteran in the ring, Lawler’s age and standing with the crowd puts him in the same category as the others, as he is a guy who was just doing his job, and was wrongly attacked for it.

But every time this angle is used, it just seems more of an annoyance to me than anything.  For me, the major selling point of pro wrestling has always been, and continues to be, the fact that it is escapism.  

When I watch Raw, SmackDown, iMPACT!, go to WWE events, or attend shows on the independent circuit, I am looking to get away from everyday life.  I work hard, I pay my bills, I take care of my family at home, and when I get into a pro wrestling program, it’s my time.

My time, to just be absorbed in the fiction I’m watching, to lose myself in the drama of it all.  That’s what initially drew us all in as fans, and it is what keeps a lot of us there, because in addition to enjoying the matches and the athleticism of the workers involved, we like to get caught up in the excitement of it all.

So, if Josh Matthews does indeed pursue a lawsuit against the physically dangerous environment of WWE, in which every man and woman knows what they’re getting into, then I will be shot back to reality faster than the moment Vince was supposedly killed in an exploding limousine.  

For me, it’s just too hard to suspend my disbelief when I see something so obviously phony.

Then again, there remains the mental image I have of a courtroom, and Daniel Bryan being called in to testify against Kane.  Hmm.

Perhaps I’m wrong on this one after all.