There were probably many wrestling fans who didn’t even know what The Walking Dead and esp. Talking Dead is all about because they watched this show for the first time to see CM Punk again after he was last seen on the telly on 26 January 2014. At least WWE is PG now so it’s not very surprising that there were wrong expectations. Talking Dead isn’t a talk show about the guests in the show; Talking Dead is a talk show about The Walking Dead and the guests in the show talk about The Walking Dead. That’s it. So there weren’t many hints about CM Punk in the future except for these two points:
- CM Punk wasn’t in the show. There was only Phil Brooks and he was talked with as Phil.
- At the very end of the show Phil stated that: “Right now I’m a completely new person. This is all about forgiveness.”
If you think, that Bray Wyatt talks in riddles, then think again, because I could write a whole book about this quote! But I’ll leave it short for just a few thoughts:
- RIGHT NOW Phil is a completely new person can basically mean that he might be CM Punk again later in his life.
- And what exactly means NEW PERSON? That CM Punk is indeed buried by Phil and won’t come back? And not for just a foreseeable time but forever? I just can’t imagine CM Punk coming out on an Old School RAW in around twenty years, yelling IT’S CLOBBERING TIME on crutches and a bald patch anyway. Like Ric Flair these days: it’s not even funny! Like I already stated a few times before: the heat and energy was missing with CM Punk in his latest few months in the WWE. Something did happen with or inside him. Was it about the work (this stupid storyline we now have to witness happens to Daniel Bryan)? Was it more personally? He probably won’t tell his (former) fans at least until July, when he’s officially free from the WWE, but most likely won’t ever talk about his reasons to leave WWE at a time that couldn’t have been worse (i.e. just some minutes before RAW was about to start).
- And the thing about forgiveness doesn’t need to refer to his real life because it was the subject about The Walking Dead and some relationships between the people there. But, if Phil was referring to his own life, again: will he forgive the WWE and esp. Triple H, Vince McMahon and the creatives at some point in the future or his brother / real parents? Has he found some sort of religion? Who knows? Anything and everything is possible.
As for me and my WWE viewing habits: there won’t be any change to that because I already figured for myself that we won’t see CM Punk ever again. For around half a year now Dean Ambrose is my favourite wrestler so I won’t miss CM Punk. I’m not giving advice that others should also move on from him and still enjoy wrestling, be open for new talents, cheer them on and stay silent for the old guys, who basically are just there for the money. I refuse doing so because everyone needs to make his or her own decision.
But maybe wrestlers outside the ring should be treated differently from what they are treated now. Pro wrestlers are generally athletes, but they are also actors, who are given a personality / gimmick that most of the time don’t reflect who they really are. BUT: given that these wrestlers outside the ring are known by their WWE names there is no real line to draw between fake and reality. Fans basically carry their hate for the scripted characters out on the street towards the real persons. The most ridiculous thing happened in the recent past was that Seth Rollins received death threats on Twitter for walking off his Shield team mates during their fight with The Wyatts. With the internet being full of information, possibilities and speculations, pro wrestlers should be able to use their real names in reality, being and acting under their wrestling names inside the ring.
Like Phil Brooks showed last night: even if he carried much of his own personality to his CM Punk character there was always a difference between these two and it should be recognized. Also if it was just for some stupid fans who can’t see the difference between the character in the ring and outside of it.
PS. As CM Punk may now rest in peace you might like to follow Phil Brooks now. But be warned: he likes to be hated and his tweets mostly are written to create hate towards himself. And he doesn’t care to block people if they act dumb and / or abusive.
UPDATE | 19 May 2014
@PhilBrooksMMA obviously was a hoax. But yesterday @CMPunk started tweeting again with a feud of words against the mascot of LA Kings, @BaileyLAKings. And that basically means that he’s maybe coming back to WWE for PayBack on 01 June 2014.