What the World is Watching

Room 104

Avalanche
Season 4, Episode 3
8//2020

Room 104 is an anthology series, similar to The Twilight Zone or Black Mirror, and is on whatever variation of HBO is currently streaming right now. Every episode is a different story that takes place in hotel room 104. This particular episode is the spiritual successor to the 2008 movie, The Wrestler.

HBO

The Wrestling Episode
This episode is pretty bleak. It’s bleaker than the Bleak Street lucha movie about mini luchadors being robbed and murdered by sex workers (review pending). A former wrestler named Raw Dawg Avalanche who, with a name like that, probably came up during the Attitude or Ruthless Aggression Era is in the middle of a therapy session that is inexplicably taking place inside a hotel room. Throughout the session, Raw Dawg is using wrestling dolls action figures to recreate events that he’s struggling to recall, probably due to the CTE. In replaying the events, which goes from Raw Dawg showing a young fan how to do the vertical suplex, to Raw Dawg getting into a bar fight with a doctor, Raw Dawg comes to terms with the trauma he suffered at the hands of his father. It’s dark. It’s sad. It’s violent. It’s too many of the things that sometimes plague the performers within the wrestling industry.

HBO

The Tropes
Does one of the show’s main characters have to wrestle?
The main character is already a professional wrestler and by the looks of it, he’s no longer actively wrestling. But he does reenact some wrestling moves.

Are they filling in for another wrestler?
No, but he’s struggling to fill a lot of the missing pieces as it relates to the incident in question. Raw Dawg did something really bad.

Do they enter a contest to wrestle for prize money?
No, and from the look of things it doesn’t seem like he made much money wrestling.

Is the wrestler an actual professional wrestler making a cameo appearance?
Yes. In fact, it’s Dave Batista, former 2-time WWE Champion, 4-time World Champion, member of Evolution, fan of blue ring gear, one-time friend of Rey Mysterio, and pending WWE Hall of Fame inductee. Batista has made a pretty good second career for himself crossing over to mainstream TV/film, landing a role with the biggest and highest grossing film franchise of all time. Something The Rock and John Cena haven’t been able to do.

Is there a masked wrestler present?
Sadly, no. Even though the name Dr. Destruction seems better suited for a guy in a mask.

Is the wrestling predetermined or legitimate?
The type Raw Dawg was paid to do was most likely predetermined. The incident in which he’s being questioned about and trying to recall was most certainly legitimate. It resulted in someone’s death.

Was an airplane spin performed?
No, but the deadly vertical suplex was.

Where is it streaming?
On HBO Max and I’m assuming regular HBO, if that’s still a thing.

HBO

Observations

  • I wonder how long it will be before the action figure of Raw Dawg and Dr. Destruction show up in either Zack Ryder or Curt Hawkin’s figure fed.
  • Do you think Mark Duplass casually watches pro wrestling?
  • Has childhood trauma ever been used as a “wrestling with demons” storyline/angle?
  • When did the sad, washed-up, broken wrestler become the new pop culture stereotype of a pro wrestler?

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