It’s the Day Four of #WilliamRegalWeek, a celebration of all things Made in England and the third installment of our (patent-pending) Juice Make Sugar Wrestler of the Week series. We started with A Wrestler You Should Probably Know Better and gave you the finer points of the Darren Matthews oeuvre with some Essential Viewing. We marched through Hump Day with a GIF Parade and now we make our Amazon.com-on-steroids dreams come true tomorrow with “Juice Make Sugar Recommends…“. We’ll finish everything off tomorrow with a Difference of Opinion (where JMS HQ erupts in a tea-fueled civil war.)
LCD Soundsystem Sound of Silver
While British punk, or British music in general seems like a more sensical comparison, this album and the song “North American Scum” in particular speaks one of the largest obstacles in Regal’s career, his accent. Well, not his accent as much as what his accent meant: after years of behavioral training, wrestling fans had been programmed to see anyone who wasn’t American as “the bad guy”. Not because they were doing bad things, of course, but because they were doing things whilst also having a funny accent.
If William Regal were Canadian, or sounded Canadian, he’d likely have been a World’s Champion at some point. Instead, because he talks “funny”, he was put on the back burner and treated as a “foreign heel”, with all of the emphasis on the first half of the phrase. Much like Regal, LCD had to overcome a bias against them, as they were seen by many as “some electronica band from England” before hitting it big with this album. They were not in any way shape or form English, of course, but because of the style of music they played and the vocal affectation of lead singer James Murphy, many people to grouped them with a movement they had nothing to do with.
That and it’s as fantastic and important an album as Regal was a wrestler.
Four Weddings and a Funeral
Beyond the obvious connection between Hugh Grant and William Regal, this movie is largely about missed opportunities and the ability to cope with that idea from an existential perspective. But, really, it’s mostly that William Regal should remind everyone of Hugh Grant.
The IT Crowd, American version
There was something that was missed in translation that wasn’t quite the fault of anyone involved, but it definitely didn’t hit the way it was supposed to stateside. Some of that was a function of the fear over what had come before — read: the Coupling DEBACLE from 2003 — but mostly it was that the country wasn’t ready for two separate worlds to come together: attractive people and nerddom. The same can be said for the WWE and the new-school hyper realistic style of wrestling mixed with old school psychology that Regal is known for.
Of course, like Regal’s style, the ideas from the IT Crowd that mattered — that nerds can be laughed at AND with, so bonus — would be packaged into something much more popular, but not necessarily better.
Both helped popularize (even if they didn’t “invent” it) a style of play and their shared inability to turn that into on-the-field success at the highest level is kind of depressingly similar.
Phillip Seymour Hoffman
Both Hoffman and Regal have had their share of moderate success and critical acclaim, but they’ve made their big money either selling out as monsters, madmen or goofballs. For every match with HE WHO SHALL NOT BE NAMED at the Third Annual Brian Pillman Memorial there is a run as Eugene’s second banana, in the same way that for every Lancaster Cobb that Hoffman gets to play, he is forced to play the bad guy in a Mission: Impossible shitstorm.
Bret Hart, Hitman: My Real Life in the Cartoon World of Wrestling
While Bret Hart may have had a wrestling bear in his basement, nothing says “real life” and “cartoon world of wrestling” more than starting your career as a carnival wrestler.