For longtime pro-wrestling fans like me, WrestleMania is the Super Bowl of wrestling, and it's just around the corner on April 10, 2021.
Each event is filled with surprises, loud stinging snares of crashing steel chairs, the distinct sound of the ring’s wooden boards and canvas rattling as bodies are slammed onto it. The action-packed ballet of wrist and head locks and high-flying acrobatics is awe-inspiring. The colorfully and ornately dressed wrestlers in masks, robes and tights add a superhero vibe to the spectacle.
Each WrestleMania brings back memories of famous wrestlers like Hulk Hogan, Shawn Michaels, The Rock and Rey Mysterio Jr. Rey Mysterio Jr. brought the aesthetic and high-flying acrobatic style of Mexican lucha libre to mainstream American culture. Now you see Americans wearing traditional luchador masks and capes in addition to items like John Cena hats, blending Mexican tradition with American pop culture.
WrestleMania is an event that I’ve greatly enjoyed since I was a kid, To honor the event, I want to share 5 amazing pro-wrestling picture books for wrestling fans of all ages.
In Friday Night Wrestlefest, join Dangerous Daddoo as he converts his home’s living room into a wrestling arena to take on the Tag Team Twins: Peanut Brother and Jellyfish. They all get into character and practice their wrestling gimmicks and moves on one another! Narrated Vince McMahon style, the book uses wrestling tropes for an authentic pro-wrestling feel.
In Lucía the Luchadora, Lucía likes to play superhero on the playground, but the boys in the park tell her that girls can’t be superheroes. This makes Lucía sad. Lucía's abuela (grandmother) cheers her up by revealing to Lucía that she was once a special kind of superhero, a luchadora! Lucía then becomes a luchadora and sets off to the park to show what she can do.
Niño Wrestles the World is narrated in announcer fashion, sprinkled with Spanish and lucha libre flair. Niño imagines himself as a grand masked luchador who combats all supernatural challengers of Mexican legend with a mix of toys and wrestling moves. Niño even battles a Guanajuato mummy, a nod to El Santo’s (a famous Mexican luchador) horror B movie exploits.
Lucha Libre teaches anatomy with in-ring action in a concept book that features homages to wrestling superstars El Santo, Blue Demon and Mil Mascaras. The book presents heads, arms, and other body parts in both English and Spanish.
The Great and Mighty Nikko! : A Bilingual Counting Book begins with Nikko's mother yelling at him to stop jumping on the bed, but he insists that he isn’t doing the jumping--it's the luchadores who are jumping. Nikko’s imagination runs wild as he envisions his luchador action figures coming to life and entering the arena (the bed) one at a time. After nine luchadores make way to the bed, it’s time for Nikko to handle the luchador problem himself by becoming the tenth wrestler. All the action is in both English and Spanish.