If anyone ever tells you that the original Doink the Clown was a bad gimmick, you have our permission to punch them in the face. They couldn’t be more wrong. The original Doink, portrayed brilliantly by Matt Borne, was one of the best heels of the day. He’d come out to happy circus music that quickly turned haunting, complete with screams. He’s play tricks on the faces, pop little kids’ balloons with lit cigar, and ridicule Vince McMahon. One time he hit Crush with a car battery.
That’s just good entertainment.
It’s when the character was turned face and Borne left the WWF that things went wrong. (Borne went to ECW and played the psychotic Borne Again, where he would beat the other wrestlers and dress them up like Doink so they could experience the torture he went through.)
But when Dink the Clown hit the scene, Vince took the Doink gimmick and killed it, buried it, and pissed on its grave.
Dink the Clown appeared as Doink’s running buddy and made Doink a face for the rest of his tenure, thus killing the cool factor of the gimmick. They would now torment heels with their circus chicanery, and that’s just lame. Don’t ask me why, I can’t explain it, but having a little clown playing tricks on good guys just isn’t cool. Having multiple workers play the part of Doink didn’t help matters either.
Eventually, the Dink thing turned REALLY ugly, with multiple miniature Doinks showing up in the WWF. Pink, Dink, Stink, Fink, whatever their names were, it just watered down the gimmick to the point that no one cared.
A shame, really, considering the potential the Evil Clown gimmick had. (Man, I’ve ALWAYS wanted to write that line.)