The gimmick is the fingerprint of a wrestler. It’s what makes him or her stand tall and alone among the others. It means originality and individuality.
It can be as simple as the everyday street guy with the usual haircut and pair of shoes (#JohnCena), or as eccentric and shocking like #PapaShango.
The choices are unlimited.
Over the years, some gimmicks instantly captured the hearts and minds of the fanbase, the #Undertaker for instance. Others couldn’t connect with the fans, no matter how good the wrestlers were, the Red Rooster was one of those. He had the shape and the skills, but the “red rooster” haircut was never enough.
Making Fans Believe it.
The more the wrestlers capture a gimmick; the more they embrace it; the more they get under its skin; and the more they become it, the more they make the fans believe it. Come on, don’t you feel a little strange every time you see a pic of Big Van Vader without his gear and mask?!
That’s when the wrestler becomes the gimmick, and the gimmick becomes the wrestler. But is that even important?!
I believe it’s essential. It’s what makes the fans connect with the wrestlers and support them while they’re climbing the ladder to get to the top.
I remember the days before the social media, when the fans only watched the performers on TV screens or live. That’s the only the fans got to see their beloved superstars.
That’s was all the fans knew about their wrestlers, so the gimmick was imprinted in the subconscious.
When I was a little kid, Hulk Hogan was always that big man in the yellow gear, getting to the ring, tearing his red top and trying to hear the the fans’ screams. I miss those days.
In today’s media-driven world, wrestlers are followed 24/7 on Twitter; Instagram, Facebook. Comparing that to a few minutes they spend each week performing on the screen or in the live shows, how can a fan hold on to the gimmick any more?! It’s too hard to impossible.
I really think the superstars need to make their accounts on whichever social media they use a complementary part of their gimmicks within the brands they represent. That’s what I think, what about you?!