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Louis Theroux's Weird Weekends

Professional Wrestling
Season 2 Episode 6 ABC2 March 19, 2012

Louis Theroux investigates the world of extreme professional wrestlers in the southern United States, where wrestling is more like avant-garde theatre than an Olympic bout. The participants are very athletic, the outcome is predetermined and it's very big business with millions of fans. But, as Louis discovers when he meets the AIWF in Southern Carolina, their style of wrestling is also gory. They hit each other over the head with chairs wrapped in barbed wire and throw drawing pins down on the mat to roll around on. They're not actually trying to hurt each other, but they want to make it look as if it hurts, so they use hidden razors to make the blood flow - a practice called juicing, as in juicing an orange. Most of the wrestlers are well paid, and the world surrounding this sort of wrestling radiates good energy. Louis explains: "There's an atmosphere of Am-Dram weekends; the audience is mainly male, but of all ages, including lots of kids, like a pantomime crowd there is a warm, fuzzy feeling to the people involved."

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