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The Best And Worst Of WWE Raw 10/31: Muppets, The Rock and Mortal Kombat

By 11.01.11

Best: Wade Barrett Vs. Evan Bourne

The counter sequence between Polish Abolitionist Barrett and Evan Bourne was so swank it almost made me forget about John Morrison dumping his life’s sandbag on Wade last week and ruining his “I can do the Wasteland in all SORTS of crazy ways” routine. Barrett’s resurgence as an Actual Guy is making the Nexus devotee in me very, very happy, and guys like Bourne and Trent Barreta are instrumental in making the Wade’s Strongest Slam look devastating. Bourne gave the move his best Family Guy sell, and if Wade could keep dropping guys head-under-feet like he’s powerbombing them I could start buying Wasteland.

However,

Worst: I Was Saying Boo-Ourne

In accordance with its Talent Wellness Program, WWE has suspended Matthew Korklan (Evan Bourne) for 30 days effective immediately for his first violation of the company’s policy.

A few things to counter the “wait, what” reaction of nearly everyone reporting this:

1. Lots of pro wrestlers do drugs, not just performance enhancing drugs, because lots of people do drugs, so don’t ever be surprised when you catch your Aunt smoking pot or find out Evan Bourne got suspended.

2. Bourne spent a lot of time in Dragon Gate when he was Matt Sydal, and if you think “Mid-Breath Gym” isn’t just code for “jump in this Saw 2-style pit full of steroid needles” I’ve got a trios team from Mexico I’d like you to book.

3. His partner is a fake Rasta guy.

Meanwhile, Mason Ryan, clean as a whistle! Hopefully this will be the only time Bourne gets suspended for something like this and the tag titles don’t suffer (hahaha), and the worst thing that comes from it will be those “Evan Bourne likes to get HIGH” jokes when he’s 38 and doing shooting star presses for chants in TNA.

Worst: I Don’t Even Like The What Chant When Muppets Do It

Some post-Henson Muppets work better than others. Kermit is doing okay. Ernie from Sesame Street, not so much. Statler and Waldorf have suffered a lot, and despite Dave Goelz being funny and great at his job, a lot of their “oomph” came from Henson’s inert need to go as far and elaborately with a pun as humanly possible. Henson would just kinda say something sh*tty and go HO HO HO HO about it and it ruled, but now they seem less like heckling old men and more like a old age comedy team going through the motions. Making jokes about the “what” chant, as funny as “old people can’t hear” may be, is not the way to compensate for that loss.

Honestly, if Jim Henson was alive today and sitting next to me at a show doing “WHAT” chants I’d turn on him in a heartbeat. I still haven’t totally forgiven him for changing that original version of Big Bird that looked like Jimmy from South Park, and that happened like ten years before I was born.

Best: Brodus Clay, Existential Fat Man

Brodus Clay as the philosophically demanding pro wrestler is a great idea. I want to hear him scream his way through “the world is so exquisite, with so much love and moral depth, that there is no reason to deceive ourselves with pretty stories for which there’s little good evidence. Far better, it seems to me, in our vulnerability, is to look Death in the eye and to be grateful every day for the brief but magnificent opportunity that life provides” and then sit on Derrick Bateman’s chest as hard as he can.

If he starts dressing like Carl Sagan as well, that would be a plus.


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