This week's wrestling themed episode had to follow up last week's "Butters' Bottom Bitch", which was one of the most wrongly hilarious episodes in a while. I thought "W.T.F" was a miss by a fairly wide margin.
Even South Park ran into the big wall for outsiders making fun of WWE/pro wrestling: It's very difficult to make fun of something that is in and of itself so absurd. There aren't a lot of ways to goof on WWE for being ridiculous that WWE doesn't do itself, whether intentionally or not.
South Park was also goofing on lowbrow wrestling storylines that are more reflective of the Attitude era than today. South Park is always so on the ball about current trends and news with their social commentary that this was kind of jarring.
I thought equating WWE with stage performances and the kids being less interested in anything athletic about it other than the theatrical wasn't quite as funny as how pissed off the amateur wrestling teacher was at how all the rednecks thought that was real wrestling. When the kids went the backyard wrestling route, I was hoping for physical violence jokes like the episode when they played with ninja weapons, but they went a different (less funny) direction.
I chuckled at some of the jokes but I thought the episode was a rare letdown from South Park.
I just thought it was surreal since I remember Billy Gunn wearing Cartman shirts on Raw to prove how edgy the NAO were, and now here's South Park opening with an Edge-Cena promo. I almost want to know what would happen if Cartman had 24-7 and caught his face on a shirt 12 years ago.
The episode was only okay, but I do give them credit for driving home the premise of wrestling as theater. It took me way too long to figure out why the rednecks were drinking wine.
You believe me, don't you? Please believe what I just said...
So the kids all totally get that it's acting & scripted plotline, & the adults are the ones who talk about it as though it's real life.
" 'Parently that crippled kid slept with that russian kid's girlfriend." "Jeez, they're so young."
"Guys, check this out: there's this little kid from the Congo who was raised by panthers!"
"These kids ain't more than 8 or 8 years old, & they got more problems than you can imagine." ... "Mister, there's a little girl out there who's had 14 abortions, & she ain't even 10 yet. But I guess that's just not *real* to you. Son of a bitch."
I laughed at the running theme that amateur wrestling is at least as homoerotic as grown, naked, sweaty men wallowing around in a pro wrestling show. "This guy probably wants to take pictures of us naked."
"Triceratops" ? Y'gotta picture Rhino falling off his sofa when he sees that. :-) And there is a "Welcome Back Rhino", a "Beware of the raging Rhino", & a "Rhino's #1 fan" in the crowd later on. Rhino gots fans!
And the masked El Pollo Loco with the "Mexico" tattoo across his tummy -- can't imagine who that might be. I should have known when he came out that's how they'd get around Kenny promo-ing.
"Wrestling Takedown Federation" is a good name, with good acronym! I can't believe no indy has used that yet.
"Ohmygod. Ohmygod-ohmygod-ohmygod." Hilarious.
Their version of "backyard wrestling" has all the physicality of a Shakespearian sword fight. Did they do anything beyond chair shots, a little pushing & one fake slap? One drop kick. That's a level of backyard wrestling that we can live with.
The coach's turn at the end when Vince lures him to the other side. Kurt Angle has said that he was anti-pro-wrestling when he first retired from amateur.
And then the close -- when the kids are actually having a brawl, the crowd all leaves with a disgusted "What the hell is this." "This is garbage fake." "Screw this, this is just stupid." "FAKE!"
I thought the whole thing was great!
Too much Robot Chicken, I guess -- I was a bit jarred when they didn't get Cena & Edge to do their voices. :-)
(edited by Alessandro on 28.10.09 1526) "All RAW is these days is a cheap version of Saturday Night Live, so if you wanna tune in to watch the amazing star power of Al Sharpton and Nancy O'Dell, go ahead! Who's gonna host next week, Big Bird? Wow, that's must-see TV!" - John Morrison (10/16/09 Smackdown!)
The fact it was one of the few episodes that had Rodger somehow lose at the end and his epilogue was worth it. Francine beating up Steve and Steve remaindering her of it was classic. I did like the suicide trap door.