Sorry if this is in the wrong section. I took a guess for the appropriate place. And what I mean by personal is that it's not just a review of the DVD but my personal thoughts on CM Punk and my personal inspirations and gains from him and what he has shared with us. This was originally written for my DeviantArt and since it was personal it did tangent a bit. But...figured I'd share here too since it was WWE related ------------------------- unk: So, I sat down today and watched CM Punk – The Best in the World today. Who'd have thought my next review would be on that, right? But THAT is just how much it inspired and touched me. I kid you not, I almost cried twice just from the raw energies that came from the people being interviewed and the genuine nature of Punk himself. This review is going to be a BIT different from my others, but that just fits with CM Punk, in general, doesn't it. The reason I'm doing so is because I want to express just HOW it touched me, and the affects left on me from watching it. I cannot do that simply as a critic. It was such a wonderful personal experience that I have to share it from that aspect; that perspective; point of view. I'll tell you my thoughts on the DVD and on Punk himself, not just on the DVD but what he has shown me since I've become aware of him. WWE has released some pretty good DVD's on their wrestlers…and some really crappy ones too. I'll admit, I'm behind on watching DVD's on some other big names like The Rock, John Cena, Rey Mysterio, and Randy Orton to name a few. I still believe they are probably great…won't know until I see them. But I have seen a few other things WWE has shared and I've seen specials and interviews but this one was special. It really was. This one had to be up there with the things I've watched on Mick Foley, but on a whole different level. Why bring up Mick Foley? Because I really respect that man as a wrestler and a person. But this isn't about Mick Foley. It's about CM Punk, and the intensity from the moment the DVD started until it ended was just amazing…like a buzz, like a drug, which is crazily ironic considering the Straight Edge background of, not a character, but a man. It was interesting to see the progression of the character who…was never a character to begin with. It was just pure, raw, honest passion. Yet, with this honesty, I find myself filled with this endless sense of confusion, because what Punk does is defy what I expect in wrestling (in some ways). Let me explain that: I've been watching wrestling off and on as a kid since the 80's…was your typical Hulkamaniac with that enigmatic dark adoration for Undertaker. But, it never really stuck…cuz I wasn't into wrestling that much. I knew who some of the guys were, but nothing much about the matches. So, when I finally started to watch in 2010, I wasn't sure how it had progressed. I remembered bits and pieces of the Attitude Era but we were obviously beyond that. Cena was the hot thing, but strangely…not very memorable to me right away. It really wasn't until The Rock did his promos that I remembered who Cena was. Rey Mysterio immediately stuck with me…and then out comes CM Punk. CM Punk was the sort of guy, at a glance, I should have not really remembered, since I didn't remember Cena right away (although the fact I was suffering from a head injury at the time probably also had something to do with that). Punk didn't have no flashy fruity neon colors. So, he wasn't like Kofi Kingston or Cena (That neon green was hard to forget, Kofi). His music wasn't all that great to me (took a while to grow on me, but it's still just not my preferable taste). I don't really even remember the match or who it was against (probably Cena, who knows). But I remembered at the end of the match, turning to my husband and going " Who the hell was that?" He replied, " Oh, that's CM Punk. I dunno if you'll like him." Sure enough, with watching past clips on youtube and watching as the average uneducated sort of viewer, I did, indeed, dislike CM Punk. I thought for sure, he had to be the biggest douchebag in wrestling. However, I started to learn a thing or two about wrestling, and it began to make me see the wrestlers differently, and CM Punk was no longer so much if a distaste to me but an intriguing man. Yeah, he was a jerk, but he was a heel. You're supposed to not like them. I had to admit, as the whole thing with Vince McMahon leaving and Triple H taking over and the Laurinitis bullcrap was starting up, I was really starting to dislike WWE. I respect Cena but…he wasn't cutting it with me. There was no flair or pizzaz. There was no real LIFE or QUALITY. I actually became very frustrated watching Raw because it was just too predictable, bland, and utterly painfully boring. I remember CM Punk coming out one night and he let out one of those pipe bombs. I don't recall if I'd heard him do one previously or truly understood what he was doing at the time. All I know is, that night, forgive my language, laid down some shit. That was the night I became confused with CM Punk's role as a heel. HOW can you hate a man who just laid out on live TV everything I was thinking at the time? Did I agree with everything? No, I think Punk and I differ in some areas, but overall he laid down that frustration and idiocy that I was seeing and of which I grew very bored. At that point, I didn't care how much of a jerk CM Punk could be. I just knew he gained a hell of a lot of respect from me. In a sense, despite this heel role and this jerk persona, whether genuine those nights or played for the camera, I couldn't hate him anymore. I actually felt this overwhelming sense of relief whenever I heard CM Punk's music play. I may or may not have liked what he said those nights, because it would indeed vary, but I had to respect that honesty and that gall to speak for the fans. I know it wasn't presented that way. In fact, if I remember, Punk insulted the fans. But, y'know, it was okay with me. Did I get annoyed? Sure. But, that meant he was that damn good to get a response from me…with me knowing most of this stuff is pre-planned. It felt alive to hear him speak and then kick some ass. Every match, win or lose, I found myself going " Okay, Cena is the good guy…but…Punk just makes more sense right now." So, I certainly respected Cena and the role model mold he put himself into. It's great, it really is. He's a great face character. Just because I like CM Punk doesn't mean I have to hate John Cena. But, I digress. Anyway, I just found myself more drawn to CM Punk, if anything because he was so different. Let's face it, I got really bored with Cena always having the titles and being Hulk Hogan 2.0. So, it was nice to see someone different scrambling to get that spotlight. I don't get to watch television anymore and get a lot of my sources from video clips and other fans who did watch, as well as the information let out by websites and the wrestlers themselves. However, I do remember seeing CM Punk win the title and I flopped backwards and going " Oh dear HEAVENS, thank you!" It meant something new and I just knew Punk would deliver. I wasn't able to watch after that, but I was kept up to date by a nearly rabid CM Punk fan (I love you ^-^), so every time Punk made the win, a sigh of relief. I knew Rock was going to face the champion and for the love of God I did NOT want it to be Cena…he had his turn already at the last Wrestlemania. I want to see a new match that is exciting…Punk has it. Rock has mat ring skills and microphone skills…so does Punk. That is a match that cannot be missed. The smack-talk alone is worth it. Anyway, back to what I gained from watching the CM Punk DVD: a sense of shame and inspiration. For those of you who don't know, I'm working on a fictional novel series and comic series called Win For the Ring. A lot of research in the world of professional wrestling entertainment had to be done and CM Punk – The Best in the World offered insight I had never seen before. There was something there that was not in anything I had watched or read. It was absolutely inspiring. I actually learned the most efficient way to book a match with my wrestler characters and the best build-ups. It was the part where William Regal mentioned his rivalry with CM Punk that it really hit me, and it really made sense and I think I gained a sense of insight I lacked previously. But, why shame, you ask? Well, as Punk went on to explain his core, what made him CM Punk, and his values and stubborn-ness, as he explained who he truly was and the "flaws" of some of the other roster members, I immediately began to look at the cast of characters I had created for my wrestling novel and felt a deep sting of shame. I had characters based on wrestlers I loved, like Goldust, Undertaker, Kane, Rey Mysterio, I jokingly said one of the characters reminded me of Heath Slater (though there genuinely was no connection between the two except a coincidental likeness in hair style). I had characters made that were a mix of some of my other favorites or those with traits I wanted to use. I then realized…they all have one or more of those flaws CM Punk mentioned. It didn't make them bad characters, but he had something none of them had, and now I desperately wanted to find such a character with such a personality. I realized I actually did have a character that had the CM Punk drive and determination, though it's a female character. Anyway, it felt really nice to know I could include that honesty and genuine passion and "stick to your guns" sort of energy and personality into a character. I had never really realized just how frustrating it had been for Punk in WWE. Even with my research, I'm not exactly an expert in things that are wrestling. However, even I could see the potential, even in the early matches shown on the DVD. I'm actually continually surprised by the things CM Punk pulls off in the ring. I sometimes catch myself going " What the…when did he start doing that?!" Fun matches; energetic matches. The company utilized badasses in the 90's with such success and yet…CM Punk went so under-utilized. The fact that he has a DVD probably means he really has hit a top tier. He's that well loved and respected to get that sort of thing. I know he actually showed the WWE 13 cover in one episode of Raw but…it didn't really sink in until I held the cover in my hands and was like " Wow, he is all by himself, centered, on the cover. He's the boss of this game. No Cena in the background. It's all you, Punk." The pose was great, the colors were great, and it actually made me feel really proud of him, even though I don't know him at all. He's not my best friend from around the block. We didn't grow up together. We didn't hang out at any time. Never went to a live match. Heck, he doesn't even respond to me on Twitter. We have, in no way to this point in my life, ever been in any way personally connected or interacted with one another. Yet, it was okay. I still felt really proud of him, as if he were someone close to me who did something really great. I don't feel that way about just any "celebrity." I feel that way because I truly believe he deserves it. I felt touched by that DVD because he said the company needed a change and dear God, it does. Definitely, I'd recommend watching the DVD. I think you'll really come to appreciate the real CM Punk…even if we get to see a lot of it on TV. He can be a jerk, and it's okay. In fact, at first I was shocked by the heel placement, since Straight Edge was such a positive message. In the 80's and early 90's, he'd have totally been in that " Take your vitamins" era and been on those neon colored D.A.R.E. commercials saying " Remember, just say no." That's where I seriously thought he'd be when I started to think about the message of Straight Edge. Why wasn't Punk a super hero? It sank in a while later that it was be so dorky and, as wonderful as the message is, CM Punk would be extremely lame if he was all goody two-shoes…another Hulk Hogan sort of figure (Granted, I still think Hulk Hogan was a big hero in his day, and I have fond memories of him growing up). Television commercials have tried the "hip hop/punk" Say No street and it just always comes off so…bad. CM Punk is a badass kind of guy, though. So, even as a face, I could see he wasn't just some lame guy who was too "uptight" about drugs and alcohol. It showed that it really meant something to him, and he talked to people in a way that they'd listen, want to smack the hell out of him, then go " Yeah, what he said!" That's a pretty awesome type of guy." He is by far the most awesome heel currently (because I just don't see Rock as a heel anymore. He just comes off as "the guy guest starring for a while before his next movie"). At least to me, he's the most interesting. I can enjoy wrestlers but it's actually a little more tricky to win my respect. I automatically respect the hard work and training it takes to do the whole wrestling thing. Making it into the WWE isn't just a walk in the park. However, I tend to overanalyze each superstar. Mic skills, ring skills, entertainment factor, interaction factors, and I do actually look at "out of character/in real life" stuff as well to gauge how much and what sort of respect to give. Several wrestlers have gained my respect this way. CM Punk had my respect, but he definitely gained a lot more just for sharing that bit of himself with his fans. I don't know how it all goes down when fans are face to face with him, He seemed pretty good to people. He seemed pretty good with kids. Those things actually weigh heavily on my decisions. So, I do want to thank <WWE and CM Punk for a very informative and inspirational DVD. I also want to thank my friend for letting me watch it. I've really gotten to see a side of CM Punk I would not have otherwise gotten to see. I certainly feel I have a better understanding about who he is and what he stands for. It was a wonderful opportunity, and short of meeting the man, himself, this was a very worthy experience.