Friday, March 7, 2008

Hillary Clinton - Monster Heel

In wrestling speak, a 'Heel' is simply a villain. Someone the audience love to hate. In the past I've talked about heels, with Ann Coulter and Bill Kristol being effective antagonists to the left. Hillary Clinton has always been a 'heel' for the Right and as the Democratic primaries have heated up she's become a 'heel' type character for segments of the left.

Hillary is a special type of Heel, a 'Monster Heel'. In wrestling, a Monster Heel is an unstoppable juggernaut who squashes opponents and is open to using dirty tactics. They will be portrayed as unfeeling brutes, often adopting characteristics from classic movie monsters. Their appeal is generated not by charisma but rather their sheer dominance.

VIDEO: Umaga in Squash Match with Scotty Goldman

The descriptor of 'Monster' functions as a noun and an adjective. The distinction between a standard heel is that a 'Monster Heel' does not purposely antagonise the audience or actively seek disapproval. They are driven only by instinct, single-minded by nature, remorseless but often misunderstood (think Frankenstein, King Kong etc...). Whilst heels like Ann Coulter and Bill Kristol take great pleasure in courting derision with inflammatory comments. Hillary generates hatred by simply being a Clinton. She is perceived by the Right and some on the Left as someone who hungers for power and will devour anything that gets in her way. She has been a polarising figure for so long that people have forgotten why she is so despised, she has simply becomes synonymous with it.

After Hillary's revival with Primary wins in Texas and Ohio, many conservative commentators spoke of Hillary's comeback using some curious analogies. In a single 30 minute segment of Hugh Hewitt's show, there were at least a half dozen different analogies to describe Hillary's comeback. Most were monster comparisons:
Hugh likening Hillary to the Mummy
"She's coming out of the crypt, Hillary is back!" and "I'm concerned that we have brought the mummy out of the tomb."

Hugh reading a listener's email, an interesting analogy for Hillary
"Hillary's comeback reminds me of the movie Fatal attraction, remember when you thought the crazy woman was dead in the bathtub."

Hugh likening Hillary to another movie monster
"If you have a chance to stake the vampire, you don't give it a glass of water and say see you tomorrow."

Hugh likening Hillary to a movie monster featured in a current Release (Prince Caspian, 2008)
"It's like the Ice Queen... I think she's getting out of the ice"

My favorite analogy, Hugh talks about Hillary's ability to deflect controversy
"She's immune from this stuff, it's like the old Barbarians of the East who would take a little bit of poison every day so they couldn't be poisoned. There's been so much, so much about Hillary and Bill that nobody listens to it anymore. It's just assumed that they're felons."

But don't think, Hillary is the only one being demonised. A caller on Hugh's show expresses fear for a greater threat.
But there's an even worse creature and that's Obama"
Listen and download the full Hugh Hewitt segment here

Hillary especially during this Democratic Primary has tried to dampen this 'Monster Heel' stereotype of her. She has tempered her infamous cackle, often lampooned by the right. She bared her feelings, showing moments of vulnerability when men taunted her by heckling "Iron my shirt" or becoming teary eyed after being moved by a woman during a campaign stop.

She is also pitted against Barack Obama, one of the biggest babyfaces in politics at the moment, possibly of all time. A Babyface is the opposite of a heel', a heroic figure and crowd favorite. This dichotomy makes for a good rivalry and interesting theatre. The contrast accentuates her perceived villainry and detracting qualities.

Her spirited fight with Barack has chipped away at her 'unstoppable' aura. In wrestling the Monster Heel persona usually occurs during the introduction stages of a new wrestler. They will often come in and go several matches undefeated creating their aura. As no wrestler can convincingly remain undefeated, inevitably the 'Monster Heel' will be beaten by a popular face. With these inescapable losses, eventually the monster heel will transition to a more mortal persona which creates a different appeal to the audience. Whilst this may be happening for Democrats, the Republicans have a vested interest in preserving the notion that Hillary is a Monster.

VIDEO: Glenn Beck analyses Hillary's Cackle

Read what Hannity supporters say of Hillary's cackle
Watch Hillary handle herself after being heckled with "Iron my Shirt' chants
Read what popular actress Natalie Portman says in defense of Hillary
Read other 'Heel' related posts
Read other 'Aura' related posts
Read about the 'Real' Hillary Clinton
Watch a Wrestling Monster Heel in action. No talking unfortunately, but then again Monster Heels are not known for their mic work.

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