I stumbled across this video of Irish WWE Wrestler Becky Lynch and noticed her mild steampunk aesthetic during her entrance. Researching her character further it appears that her entire character has a steampunk style to it. Whether it’s her welding goggles (which she actually wears *shock*), her copper hair or wrestling outfits which look to have some sort of industrial or corset design in them. In the video the font used for her name appears steampunk in style.
Yet looking at videos, reading articles etc, she never really expresses herself as a steampunk. Is it a gimmick then? Possibly, though in an interview with Jericho, she says about her goggles: “”That’s all just steampunk as well, but they make me feel like a pilot and I imagine this is my ship and I’m going to take it to infinity and beyond. And then it’s like I can see the world through my own unique set of eyes, for my bexplorations.”
That contradicts using the style simply to be popular and she never really overdoes it in the styling. However in an article with The Evening Times, she said: ““It’s my brainchild and you just try and put more layers on it. I don’t really consult with anyone about where it’s going, I just come up with ideas and try to put them out there and hope they connect with the audience. It’s trial and error. Steampunk is a style that I just thought was cool and hadn’t really seen it before in wrestling. It seemed like something that you could do a lot with, because there’s all this creativity and innovation.”
Is it right?
Is it right that she only uses it because it’s cool? Some may pick up on that and suggest she’s not a steampunk, but then I can’t see anywhere that she says she is. This is where we enter the precarious no-man’s-land of what is and isn’t steampunk and who should be “allowed” to use it.
According to articles found online, she adopted the steampunk style in 2015 after tweeting an image of her new outfit. Fans immediately picked up on her resemblance to Chandra Nalaar from the trading card game Magic The Gathering.
Of course, everyone should be allowed to dress steampunk and Becky Lynch wears it well. Is she a steampunk? Well it doesn’t really matter. We should only really look further into it if she was exploiting the style in some way. She’s clearly not, although she does have a line of merchandise ranging from T-Shirts to hats. She’d be stupid not to in an industry where there’s fans. The WWE website is selling “Becky Lynch” steampunk goggles for $9.99 (or £8.21 to the UK which is actually more than the current conversion says it should be) which can be picked up on eBay for around £3 (approx $3.50 – $4). That’s disappointing, but not unexpected.