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TUCKER'S REACTION: (Updated) Paul Bearer's son reacts to Raw's closing angle - has Punk-Taker feud gone too far?

Apr 2, 2013 - 4:18:35 PM
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Clarification: WWE forwarded to PWTorch a text message from Michael Moody, the son of Bill Moody (Paul Bearer), clarifying his stance on the final angle on Monday's Raw involving C.M. Punk and The Undertaker...

TEXT FROM MICHAEL MOODY TO WWE: "Hey. I woke up in time to watch the tail end of the show. What you explained would happen happened. Which is fine. Just it was a little difficult to watch it play out. I put a message on Facebook last night saying that we approved it but it wasn't what I envisioned. That I didn't have anything to say. Well woke up this morning and that quote is being used all over 'media outlets.' For the record. I was fine w it. Was hard to watch but y'all are professionals and I trust."

The following is PWTorch specialist Benjamin Tucker's column published Tuesday reacting to the angle and Moody's Facebook post...

By Benjamin Tucker, PWTorch TV specialist

"If anyone is wondering, yes, WWE did come to us wanting approval for tonight's storyline. The way it was presented to us was okay. Seeing it on screen was a different story. I don't even know what to say."

This is a quote directly from the Facebook page of Michael Moody, son of the late Paul Bearer.

It's been a long time since a WWE angle has generated a similar sort of controversy. Ever since Bill Moody (Paul Bearer) died, many wrestling fans have debated whether or not WWE's use of his urn and likeness to promote the C.M. Punk vs. Undertaker match at WrestleMania has been appropriate.

Up until today, a large portion of those who found these segments to be distasteful were placated by the fact that Bearer's sons seemed to be okaying everything that was put on television. And, if those closest to Bearer don't mind his likeness being used in this manner, why should we?

Based on Moody's Facebook page, it appears to be a different story now.

C.M. Punk rubbing Bearer's presumed ashes on his face and chest after dousing The Undertaker with his remains highlights how cheap and tacky this is. Time and time again I have seen people defend this angle because it has been approved every step of the way by Bearer's sons, but I believe that comment holds no more water. What we're left with is an uncomfortable angle that comes across like exploiting the death of a legend in this business.

Not only does the angle come across as disrespectful to the Moody family, it could very well serve as one of WWE's most offensive stories ever. I felt the final moment last night on Raw propelled the angle to a level similar to how Eddie Guerrero's death was incorporated into TV back in 2005 and 2006. And even in that scenario we never heard that what they were saying wasn't approved - there was no hint of there being any issue with a Guerrero family member in regards to the storyline.

On Michael Moody's Facebook page, when someone wrote: "I cannot believe Vince McMahon would use the demise of a human being for financial gain... said no worker ever," Daniel Moody wrote: "lol." When someone else wrote on Michael's Facebook page: "Wow. I missed it. I'm sorry if things didn't go down the right way." Daniel Moody wrote: "Totally different."

At the very least, the story should get no worse from here. I mean, after C.M. Punk was scripted to defile the suggested remains of a human being, it really can't get worse, but still. All I'm saying is that after the comment posted by Bill Moody's son, I don't see a way to defend C.M. Punk's attack on Undertaker as appropriate and "edgy." In my eyes, it was offensive and entirely unnecessary.

There are certain lines that I believe should not be crossed - despite what Punk has said in interviews about believing there are no lines. Whether WWE meant to or not, Moody's son feeling that it was difficult to watch the angle play out convinced me that this feud is one of the most inappropriate storylines WWE has produced.

I believe WWE is no longer tributing Paul Bearer's memory. It's exploitation, which is a real shame considering The Undertaker and Punk do not need a crutch like this to hype a match. Ten years down the line, this will hopefully be remembered as the last night WWE went too far. I hope.

Any questions or comments? Feel free to message me on Twitter @BTuckertorch .

[Torch photo credit Wade Keller (c) PWTorch.com]


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