Chris & Nancy: The True Story of the Benoit Murder-Suicide and Pro Wrestling’s Cocktail of Death, The Ultimate Historical Edition

ECW Press
27
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The Benoit murder-suicide in 2007 was one of the most shocking stories of the year, and a seminal event in the history of wrestling.


In “The Ultimate Historical Edition” of his classic 2009 true crime account, Chris & Nancy, Irvin Muchnick extends his definitive record of the most sensational scandal in pro wrestling history by connecting it to someone who was then a bit player in the wrestling world: Donald Trump. A new introduction reflects on Trump's business ties to WWE's McMahon family, how wrestling "attitude" came to define the populist, demagogic Trump presidency, and finally a scandal management playbook that both exposed the former and foreshadowed the latter.


Muchnick — the author of Wrestling Babylon and a co-author of Benoit: Wrestling with the Horror That Destroyed a Family and Crippled a Sport — has parsed public records and interviewed dozens of witnesses, inside and outside wrestling, to put together the first thorough and authoritative events of the gruesome June 2007 weekend in Fayette County, Georgia, during which World Wrestling Entertainment superstar Chris Benoit murdered his wife Nancy and their seven-year-old son Daniel, before proceeding to kill himself.


But this book goes beyond the crime itself to answer some of the most important questions behind it. The biography of Benoit, a wrestler’s wrestler, makes it clear that his tragedy was a microcosm of the culture of drugs and death behind the scenes of one of North America’s most popular brand of sports entertainment. The author probes the story of the massive supplies of steroids and human growth hormone found in his home — all prescribed by a “doctor to the stars” who got indicted by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, and all dismissed by a WWE “wellness policy” that promoted everything except its talent’s wellness. The Benoit case led to unprecedented scrutiny of wrestling’s overall health and safety standards, by Congressional investigators and others, and this book is the primary source of what they found and what they should continue to look for.

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About the author

Irvin Muchnick has written about media, business, higher education, and sports for many major magazines and newspapers, including The Village Voice and The New York Times. His first book was a collection of these articles called Wrestling Babylon (ECW Press). A native of St. Louis, he lives in California with his wife and four children.
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Additional Information

Publisher
ECW Press
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Published on
Mar 8, 2013
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Pages
280
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ISBN
9781770900066
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Language
English
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Genres
Sports & Recreation / General
Sports & Recreation / Wrestling
True Crime / Murder / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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Two decades of the top twenty fan favorites and the matches that made them famous.

It starts with an insult...then comes a push, a shove...a betrayal. Before you know it, the two wrestlers are at each other's throats. It's a rivalry, it's personal...it's a showdown.

Some showdowns are straightforward: John Cena wants to prove himself by taking on JBL; Randy Orton knows that if he can slay Undertaker, it will prove that he is the legend killer. Others are grudge matches -- The Rock is finally going to put Stone Cold Steve Austin, the bionic redneck, in his place.

There are conflicts we can all identify with: Steve Austin doing to Mr. McMahon what we dream of doing to our boss every Monday morning. There are the epic showdowns that evoke the eternal struggle: Undertaker versus Kane. And the truly bizarre: Mankind against Shawn Michaels.

Here for the first time ever, Jeremy Roberts (co-author of Controversy Creates Cash and Batista Unleashed) examines the top twenty rivalries of the past twenty years. Roberts takes us on a veritable tour of recent wrestling history, from Hulk Hogan's showdowns with Randy Savage to the gargantuan struggles between Undertaker and Batista. The high-flying action of the Hardy Boyz, the Dudleys, Edge & Christian -- all are examined in what amounts to a brief for the wrestlers' inclusion in the hall of fame. From the Monday Night Wars between nWo and D-Generation X to the real-life conflict that spawned Matt Hardy's memorable bloodfest with Edge, Roberts takes you into the ring so vividly you'll come away with bruises.
Irvin Muchnick — a widely published writer and nephew of the late, legendary St. Louis wrestling promoter Sam Muchnick — has produced a book unlike any other on the astonishing growth of professional wrestling and its profound impact on mainstream sports and society. In Wrestling Babylon, he traces the demise of wrestling’s old Mafia-like territories and the rise of a national marketing base thanks to cable television, deregulation and a culture-wide nervous breakdown. Naturally, the figure of WWE’s Vince McMahon lurks throughout, but equally evident is the public’s late-empire lust for bread, circuses, and blood. As this book demonstrates, the more cartoonishly unreal wrestling got, the more chillingly real it became.

What truly distinguishes Wrestling Babylon, however, is Muchnick’s ability to show how professional wrestling has become the ur-carnival for a culture that feeds on escapist displays of humiliation, revenge, fantasy characters, and sex. His People magazine article on Hulk Hogan blew the lid off the drug abuse of the sport’s signature superstar. His award-winning Penthouse profile of the ill-starred Von Erich clan was the first to connect the dots between wrestling, televangelism, and MTV-style production values. His never-before-published investigation of the death of Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka’s girlfriend suggests the cover-up of a murder. The book’s appendix — a comprehensive listing of the dozens of wrestlers who died prematurely over the last generation, with little or no attention — is both a valuable resource for wrestling historians and a shocking document of the ruthless way sports entertainment eats its own.

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