Jaded and disillusioned with what he calls the “cookie-cutter cliches” of professional wrestling, pretentious fan Lyle McCormick professes to only like wrestlers who, it turns out, don’t actually exist.
McCormick is what’s known as a “smart mark” (or “smark”), but he has taken the know-it-all pretentiousness of smarkery to its illogical extreme.
“Forget Daniel Bryan — the best wrestler in the world is Tetsuya Hidamaki from Pro Wrestling NOAH,” 27-year-old McCormick is fond of telling anyone who’ll listen.
“The match between Hidamaki and Kenji Kizukuri at Tokyo’s Korakuen Hall last month was the only truly six-star match of the last three decades.”
Some of McCormick’s friends were initially impressed by his seemingly encyclopedic knowledge of Japanese wrestling (or “Puroresu,” as McCormick insists on calling it), until they realized that none of the wrestlers McCormick claims to love actually exist.
McCormick began to alienate his fellow wrestling fans by making smug, dismissive statements like “Punk sucked all along,” “Steen is overrated,” and “The Undertaker’s streak was a joke.”
When his friends confronted him, insisting that his devotion to obscure Japanese and Mexican promotions is just a desperate plea for attention, McCormick huffily called them “marks,” but then ran away crying.