This article originally appeared on Noisey UK.
Is there anything more entertaining than watching one famous person beating the living crap out of another famous person? Of course there isn't. Celebrity Deathmatch was a claymation television show that originally ran on MTV between 1998 and 2002 and was revived from 2005 to 2007. Featuring different animated superstars fighting to the bloody death inside a wrestling arena, it was a bit like Wallace & Gromit meets Spitting Image meets WWE meets Itchy & Scratchy meets Mortal Kombat meets TMZ. It was brutally efficient celebrity satire that left a gaping hole of absent ridicule in the modern showbiz landscape.
Of course, like a frying pan to the face, it was a huge smash back when it aired. The premiere of its fifth season attracted over 2.5 million viewers, the likes of Star Wars’ Mark Hamill and Lucy “Xena” Lawless provided their own voices for their animated counterparts, and Marilyn Manson, a regular character in the show, even wrote a Celebrity Deathmatch-inspired song: ‘Astonishing Panorama of the End Times’. It went, “Kill your God / Kill your TV / Raa-raa-raa / Jesus Christ is plasticine” (or something like that).
Now like a phoenix from the flames, or a man made out of clay who’s been squished into a formless lump but then modelled back into an serviceable man-shape again, the show is being revived. MTV2 has ordered a pilot for some new batches of "deathmatches". And while the real world of fighting gears up for Pacquaio versus Mayweather, the rest of us are watering at the thought of the elite beefs that can once again be settled in animated form, like Azealia Banks vs Iggy Azalea, Robin Thicke vs The World, Kanye West vs Taylor Swift, Kanye West vs Beck, Kanye West vs Liam Gallagher, Kanye West vs White Rock Fans, and Kanye West vs God. But until that happens, here's a misty eyed restrospective to the greatest music battles in Celebrity Deathmatch history.
When Marilyn Manson Pulled Charles Manson's Spine Out
No better place to start than the first episode of the first series, where theatrical evil took on actual evil as gothy shock-rocker Marilyn Manson squared up to his namesake, the failed songwriter-turned-murderous cult-leading, swastika-foreheaded nutcracker, Charles Manson. Without his "family" to hide behind and carry out his wicked bidding, Charles didn’t stand a chance against the artist formerly known as Brian Warner. Granted, he did to tear off Marilyn’s shoulder with his bare teeth, but only before the Antichrist Superstar yanked Charles’ skeleton right out of his own shit-bearded mouth. A show was born.
When Mariah Carey Got Her Foot Stuck Up Jim Carrey's Butt
Back in 1998, comedy actor Jim Carrey was at the height of his Hollywood superstardom, thanks to his ability to pull funny faces and insert additional syllables into the word “really.” Mariah was also enjoying one of the plateaus of her rollercoaster career, having not yet appeared in a semi-autobiographical romantic drama co-starring Max Beesley. Hyperactive Jim has the upper hand for most of this scuffle. However, with one swift kick of her diva-heeled shoes, Mariah did manage to get her foot stuck up Jim’s rectum. Carrey then traps Carey in a choke-hold and it looks like it could be curtains for the elusive chanteuse. She’s got a secret weapon though, ending the fight like she does every song, with a superhumanly high-note that proves literally head-splitting.
When Flea Put Kenny's G's Saxophone Up His Butt
Who’s your favorite member of Red Hot Chili Peppers? Anthony Kiedis, the Mick Hucknall of funk? The drummer, because he looks like that actor from Talladega Nights and Get Hard? Whoever the guitarist is nowadays? No. It’s Flea, obviously. He has a large Fugazi sticker on his bass and was in The Big Lebowski, so he must be all right. And who’s your least favourite frizzy-haired light-jazz saxophonist? Kenny G, of course! Want to see Flea insert Kenny G’s saxophone into his own anus and blow one hell of a bum note? Your weird dream’s come true.
When Sting Did Kama Sutra on Phill Collins
Less suited to the wrestling ring, this battle of the blands should’ve taken place in the middle of the road. The sissy-rock showdown sees spiritual tantric-humper Sting receive a beating at the hands of ex-Genesis Tarzan soundtracker Phil Collins. Things get a little spicier when Collins stands too close to Sting and is consequently bent mercilessly into various Kama Sutra positions by the pious old perv. Talk about exchanging blows. Anyway, against all odds, Collins is able to turn it on again and does what normally takes a good eight hours to accomplish: bringing Sting to a sticky end.
When Ol Dirty Bastard Ripped LeAnn Rimes' Tongue Out
Celebrity Deathmatch sometimes liked to resurrect stars from the grave, bringing Hendrix back to sort out Lenny Kravitz, for example, or having Bob Marley take on the gargle-voiced neo-Reggae twit Shaggy. Yet it’s a strangely poignant experience to re-watch a claymation version of a VIP who was alive at the time of broadcast but has since sadly passed on to the gladiatorial thunderdome in the sky. Personally, this is how I like to remember the free spirit that was the hip-hop maverick Ol Dirty Bastard: ripping the tongue from the throat of the crossover country star who did that song from that film about people who dance on top of saloon bars. I mean, they still had their shoes on. Didn’t they take their hygiene certificate? Watch the full fight here.
When Noel Pulled Liam's Eyebrows Off
This was the ultimate lout-bout between the two Oasis siblings. A fisticuffs of biblical proportions, imagine Cain and Abel with big parka jackets, an unhealthy Beatles obsession and the utter inability to musically evolve. This fight has everything: punching, bottle-throwing, ankle-snapping and even eyebrow amputation. The truly sickening thing about the clip, however, are the dreadful cockney accents that have been wrongly ascribed to the Mancunian bros. Sort it out, America. We don’t all sound like Dick van Dyke in Mary Poppins. Some of us sound more like Daphne from Frasier.
When The Machine Decapitated Rage Against The Machine
Spoiler alert: the machine wins.
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