Fans of professional wrestling were shocked today when a so-called “finishing maneuver” — John Cena’s Attitude Adjustment, or AA — actually lived up to its description by successfully finishing a match on the first try.
Cena delivered the move to opponent Randy Orton at a non-televised “house show” last night in Tallahassee, and the audience collectively gasped in disbelief when the maneuver was followed by a pin and a three count.
“Wait, what?” stammered one gobsmacked ringside fan, ill-equipped to process the unusual turn of events. “Wasn’t Orton supposed to kick out of that, and then again later, and at least one more time?”
In the olden days of professional wrestling (prior to 2013), finishing moves like the AA, the F5 and the Tombstone only needed to be delivered once in order to bring a given match to a close.
But WWE superstars have, evidence suggests, developed a kind of immunity to finishers — in much the same way that some bacteria become resistant to antibiotics through repeated exposure — and the moves have lost their bout-ending potency.
Fans were also stunned later on the same show, when a wrestler used the long-obsolete method of saying “I quit” rather than “tapping out” to a submission hold.