Originally Posted by Laughable Chimp
I see what you mean and understand the many dimensions wrestlers can be talented in. That doesn’t get to the core of it though.
Let’s take the Rock for example. He is talented on the mic... why do we say that? Because he’s entertaining. Why does that matter? Because our eyes are glued to the screen. Why does that matter? Because we’ll tune in to watch him. Why does that matter? So we listen to him when he says he’ll fight someone at a PPV. Why does that matter? So we give money to a business selling a scripted fight.
He’s selling a used car for a high price, and he can do so through his charisma on the mic.
As fans, as point to his mic skills... but as a whole, we only describe The Rock as talented if he can meet the 5 criteria for selling a scripted fight (compared to say, Enzo, who was talented on the mic but not a talented overall performer)
I would have to say that there’s more to selling a scripted fight than just talent and some of these aspects are not part of talent. Booking, the current interest in the product, hell even looks and appearance don’t count inside talent.
So it’s very hard to judge talent based on drawing power alone. Shawn Michaels for example is considered one of the most talented wrestlers of all time but his drawing power amounted to relatively little.
I think the best way to measure someone’s talent is in their ability to entertain and believe it or not, entertainment quality doesn’t always equal popular or draw for many reasons. There’s been plenty of highly entertaining or high quality things that don’t massively draw.
Edit: The purpose of a wrestler is to entertain. They are after all entertainers. So their talent should be judged based on their ability to entertain.
You don’t call a doctor talented due to how much money he makes for example. You call him talented based on how good he is at his job, which is you know, doctor stuff. Same goes for any occupation.
But under this definition, how talented is Enzo Amore?
I’m saying his overall talent is less, because he didn’t meet all 5 criteria of what it takes to “sell a scripted fight”.
1. Draw attention, viewers, interest
2. Draw money
3. Sell a future fight (promo, story situations, character investment)
4. Deliver on the fight (so they come back, and don’t feel cheated)
5. Perception of experiencing something important (because the alternative is awareness and unacceptance of being deceived in buying the scripted fight).
Enzo is talented in some areas, but not talented at all in other areas.
Overall, he has little talent.
He can’t sell scripted fights consistently - and that’s the ultimate goal. That’s why he needs to entertain. Being entertaining, I argue, is just a sub-category of talents or skills, to meet the broader end goal.
As a heel, he can work, because the babyface can sell everything else, so he has value... but he’s not a talented performer overall.
As for your doctor analogy... his ultimate goal is to sell his knowledge as something that can improve your health. If he’s excellent at researching in the lab, but terrible at diagnosing symptoms or communicating, is he a talented doctor?