The World Wildlife Fund (now known with the suffix "for Nature" in attempt to attract naturists to the fanbase), or WWF, is a sports entertainment company dealing in professional animal wrestling arranged by animal lovers within the aforementioned organisation. It features fights, wrestling bouts, brawls, fisticuffs and bloodbaths wherein dangerous predators, the lazy and weak, perilous domestic pets and endangered species are the combatants, battling with one another in a pre-defined survival of the fittest.
federation... sorry, fund features every wrestling fan's favourite brawlers, including the bear, the elephant, the snake, the shark and the chihuahua. All of them scramble for glory in the bloodied ring, leaving no other animal standing, other than itself.
HistoryThe World Wildlife Fund was founded in 1961. The group stated their mission to protect endangered species and other animals, and they promptly set about getting involved in saving poor animals, like injured little bunnies and the rare Siberian orange duck-billed mongoose, from extinction and suchlike. But in 2000 a botched attempt to sue the then World Wrestling Federation (now known as the WWE) for unfair trade practices, regarding the abbreviation, lead to the organisation's mission being forever changed.
In a complicated muddle of events, it was agreed that the World Wildlife Fund could keep the abbreviation for itself (whilst the WWE took a new name), but only if they focused on organising cock fights, bear baiting, feeding animals to the lions and other inter-nature conflicts. Eventually, the level of fights escalated and full battles between the beasts were held as a new spectator sport.
It is well worth mentioning, however, that the WWF was certainly not the first group of individuals to organise fights between beasts. This sport has gone back thousands of centuries, ever since cavemen organised fights between rabid children and mammoths (which led to the latter's extinction). The Romans pitted the Christians again the lion, which ended in a no-contest for the lion (although of course, Christians are no longer classified as an animal), and settlers in 1800s Australia often put the dodo in fights with the Bruce, a mysterious, near-mythical creature known for its weakness to stingrays.
Whereas the WWE has the face/heel arrangement to determine popularity and feuds, the WWF uses the food chain to act as itss system to determine who is pitted against who. So rats may be put against owls, gazelle against tigers, vultures put against buffalo and gorillas against lions.
The system also uses archetype rivalries that are commonly associated with animals. This means that the main events can feature historic clashes such as cat vs. dog, or the equally popular elephant vs. mouse. So popular are the rivalry events that a film was released in 2002 called Man v. Nature: The Road to Victory, incorporating humanisation of the noble sport into a telling documentary.
The Dog v. The Cat
This battle was set in place innocently enough when the owner of a house in Manchester bought a cat and left it to mew about on the living room. As WWF cameramen filmed through the windows from the outside, the resident dog's inner thoughts decreed that he "thought he smelled a pussy-cat". The dog, who is a veteran in the WWF, awoke from its slumber to confront the cat, which was playfully rolling about on the carpet. The dog was immediately struck by a tinge of jealousy. Had its master betrayed him?
The dog slumbered towards the fluffy cat and proceeded to give cute little Whiskers the beating of a lifetime. At this point, the viewing numbers rose considerably (not to mention people calling in to
complain shower praise), and Rover finally stopped kicking the feline's organs out of alignment. The dog was then immediately put down by the owner.
The WWF later denied that the whole setting was written and staged.
There are many kinds of matches in the WWF. The first types came not long after fans quickly got bored with the standard singles match, where the fight ended when there was literally only one animal left standing in the ring - the other in the former's stomach.
- Zoo cage match - This is exactly like the cage match featured in the WWE, however the stress of living years and years in captivity has taken their toll on the combatants. The de facto beginning of this is when the zoo-keepers open the cages briefly to pass on food, but the animals barge out and beat the stuffing out of the keepers. Then the animals fight each other for freedom and run away. I don't know why they do the last bit, but then that's animals for you.
- Mating season - No, no, none of the stereotype "wrestling fetish" you read about on the internet. A mating season match is where two of the same species battle each other for a member of the opposite sex. Fights between grasshoppers are the most popular amongst the fans, as the feast afterwards is most tasty.
- Cat and mouse - Literally a game of a cat and mouse. When the first cat vs. mouse game was held, the latter simply scurried away under the commentator's table. Rather than complain to the referee, the cat merely yawned and sat outside the table, waiting for the mouse, watching the its every movement. Over time this game format of getting away from the enemy has evolved, from the gazelle trying to get away from the cheetah (the gazelle has never won) to the goldfish getting away from the whale and of course the classic humble tortoise vs. the pompous hare.
- Stampede - Simple really. Lots of animals run away from something (in this case, a gamekeeper with a massive gun improvises) and the winner is the ultima hombre - the only animal who didn't get run over.
- Ladder match - A game whereupon the combatants are given a ladder and they have to do decide what do with it - growl at it, rub their arse against it, bash each other over the head with it - but there is only one victory condition. The first to climb the ladder wins. This is a test of the beasts' intelligence: who will learn how to copy the actions of human beings and climb first? Always a riot.
In 2003, after various experimentations as to how to get the whole animals-beating-each-other-up idea off the ground, one enlightened figure within the WWF remembered that the creatures of the sea were eligible to enter the fray. The first underwater battle, the swordfish vs. the octopus, went badly. Several cameramen in diving suits went down to film the historic battle, but they were skewered/inked to death, as they had no way of getting out in time.
It was then, that the idea of putting an animal from the land against the fish was introduced.
The Shark v. The Chihuahua
So when the attempt to hold the first land animal vs. sea creature match was pitted to the WWF owners, the idea was met with much acclaim. The first idea was to hold a fight between the whale and the crab, but the latter prevailed when the whale became beached on the shore. It was decided that this was obviously unfair on the marine animal, so a fight held in the waters was to be organised. By a landslide, the chihuahua was voted to represent the land, and by a similar vote count, the shark was called out to represent the sea.
A boat with the chihuahua aboard set out to shark-infested waters to start the match. When the boat finally stopped, several WWF officials flung the chihuahua overboard and they awaited the outcome of what was expected to be a grilling fight. Seconds later, they identified a plume of blood, along with a dog collar, arising from the seabed to taint the surface. After several hours of staring into the musky red waters, they were not met by either the shark or the chihuahua and decided to call a draw.
Just like any other fighting sport, the WWF has its own championship belt, held only by the strongest wrestler in the federation. To decide who the first holder of the belt should be, London Zoo was hired for private use by the owners of WWF. To the surprise of the staff, all of the cages were unlocked and the beasts were on the loose, however imprisoned in the zoo with no choice that to fight each other. Whoever would be the last animal standing would be known as the champion until defeat. Lions feasted on the penguins, poisonous snakes took down the zebras, elephants stomped the meerkats, giraffes head-butted the high-flying but bothersome parrots, vultures often interfered in fights when the combatants were mortally wounded and then picked at their skin. In the end, only the venomous cobra and the lion was left standing. The latter simply ate the snake, but the poison caused the lion to die as well.
When the battle royale came to no real conclusion, the WWF owners decided that the championship should "start from the ground up" and gave the belt to the worm as a default.
The Worm v. The Snake
This match ended as soon as it started. The snake was already waiting in the ring as the worm was being announced for entry, but the worm was nowhere to be found. But the snake started coughing and a tiny pink string-like body fell from his mouth. After claiming it was just his tounge "shedding it's shell. It's not just my skin that does that, honest", the belt was given to him anyway. The worm was not available for comment on the overruled disqualification.
The Snake v. The Bear
This battle certainly lasted longer, but was still as quick as the first WWF championship match. When the match started, the bear sat still in the middle of the ring, unbeknownst of the surroundings, as he was lured by "FREE HONEY!" signs that lead to the arena. The snake tried all he could, but constricting the bear was in vain. Any attempt to bite the bear was palmed away. Eventually, the snake remained still and taunted his opponent.
After 30 seconds of hissing and spitting, the unwitting bear merely picked up the snake and pulled its head and tail apart, like a piece of string, and threw the flowing gibbets over the side of the ring. The astonished, blood-soaked crowd looked on in silence, before erupting into a tulmultous cheer. The blank-faced bear took the title, on what would be the start of a long run. But he didn't really bother about it. The bear didn't care for any fair.
The Lion v. The Bear
A vastly over-hyped battle came to a sharp, shattering conclusion. The two beasts had incurred a rivalry in the run-up to this match, the lion having accused the bear in foul play when he took the title from the snake. He claimed to the press that the bear gave the snake no real chance, despite the snake having done the exact same against the worm. It was noted that the lion was married to the deceased snake's daughter, but the bear responded furiously anyway, saying that the lion "has a blue brain" and is "scared of a real fight". The lion seethed villain-like and returned to his home in the wardrobe.
When the bell rang, the beasts were immediately at each other's throats. Eventually, the bear simply thumped the lion on its head with its massive paw (I use this word lightly), and the lion's skull cracked open like a coconut and the insides splurged out. His blue brains, confirming the brain insult made by the bear prior to the match, squelched across the ring and the lion fell dead. The bear had successfully defended his title.
The Crocodile v. The Bear
The crocodile looked upon this tie and said he hoped to "make a snappy meal of it". The bear, having got used to trash talking on the microphone, responded by saying that the crocodile should "go croak back to his pond like the green amphibian that he is". The crocodile said "Oh, I can't bear his dull wit". The crocodile had been asked if he had ever hunted bear, but he said "no, but I once went shooting in my shorts".
The crocodile's awful puns came to an end when the bear snapped his trap shut for the win.
The Gorilla v. The Bear
The crushing reign of the brutal bear controlled all aspects of the WWF, even the working hours for the organisation's owners, and with an iron paw, the bear beat every other figment of nature that came before him, including squirrels, bundles of lamb and trees.
Despite this, the WWF was as successful as ever. The popularity soon spread past the attention of the local zoo (before that, the popularity was limited to the personnel of the local pet shop), unto the world stage, with the cries of
tortured fighting animals ringing through desert and forest, lake and National Trust heritage parks, and everywhere else on the planet. The cancerous smell of blood spread to the jungles, and drifted under the sensitive nose of the gorilla. The oversized ape read about the bear's wrestling prowess and dared to think he could do better. Writing to the WWF owners, he placed a match request against himself and the bear. The challenge was accepted.
Two months later, an ambulance arrived to the jungle to return the body of the gorilla, along with its head that was caved in its ribcage. The bear had defended its title for the third time.
The Sloth v. The Bear
In the fourth defence of his coveted title, the bear finally met his match: the sloth.
As soon as the match started, the sloth immediately set about for a place to sleep. Spotting an opening for the bear's neck, he engaged a sleeper hold on the beast and embarked on a month long hibernation. Thus, the bear had thirty days to survive being strangled to death, but the poor thing gave up after an hour. The bear fell, dead as a dodo, from his pedestal and the belt passed on to the sloth.
Meanwhile, the sloth has remained the WWF champion for years. The WWF officials still cannot pry it from the bear's neck.
The WWF has courted with controversy over the treatment of endangered wildlife and weak animals. The WWF responded that should a successful lawsuit render them bankrupt, they will only sell up their wrestlers to local restaurants. No complaints, formal or informal, have been lodged since.
- ↑ The organisation is now known as the World Wide Fund for Nature. God, I don't know either.
- ↑ The full match analysis of this battle can be found here
- ↑ Here, a crocodile is defeated by man's best friend.
- ↑ I learnt this on an episode of QI!
- ↑ Quote from the bear's autobiography: "As I made my way to the shop every morning, they told me they didn't serve bears. So I basically just duffed up anything I saw, including innocent things like squirrels, sheep and trees. I was at the top, long before my fall, but I was already on a path of self-destruction."