William Moody, or as he’s better known in the world of wrestling as the legendary Paul Bearer, has passed away, age 58.
Dear Reader, I have been a big professional wrestling fan ever since I was a little Duke. Granted, I don’t watch too much of it these days, as the talent they have is nothing like what it used to be, the violence has been toned down extremely to create a more family-friendly vibe, and, maybe most importantly, hardly anyone in the WWE can act. Occasionally, a brilliant match will come along that you can show to people and say “see, this is why wrestling is awesome”, like the 10 out of 10, fucking brilliant match between the Undertaker and Shawn Michaels at WrestleMania XXV (seriously, please, go check that shit out), but for the most part, wrestling has gotten pretty lame. But when I was growing up in the 90’s, fuck, wrestling was awesome. I loved watching all the great WWF (and it’s still WWF to me, fuck calling it WWE) superstars battle it out in the ring, and no wrestler was greater to me than the Undertaker. The guy was huge, and could destroy anybody in his path. But a large part of the appeal of the Undertaker was thanks to his manager, Paul Bearer.
Paul Bearer was funny as hell, and even better, he was really fucking weird. I suppose the world of professional wrestling is pretty weird in general (they had characters with names like Mr. Ass, after all), but Paul Bearer took that shit to a whole new level. Actually, looking back on it, I’d say watching him in action shaped a lot of the surreal sense of humour that I have today. There has never been a better manager in the history of professional wrestling, and I doubt there ever will be again.
I love you, Paul Bearer. Rest In Peace.