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Wrestling: Evolution
"Adapt... or perish."

Evolution was a Power Stable on Raw between 2003 and 2005, and consisted Ric Flair, Triple H, Randy Orton and Batista. Each of the members represented the best in "the past" (Ric Flair), "the present" (Triple H), and "the future" (Randy Orton and Batista) of Professional Wrestling. At one point (pictured right) they would all be in the possession of the World Heavyweight Championship (Triple H), The Intercontinental Championship (Orton) and World Tag Team Championships (Batista and Flair).

It was with this group, Eric Bischoff's backing, and arguably Stephanie McMahon's support behind the scenes, that Triple H went on his infamous "reign of terror" where he ran roughshod over Monday Night Raw, holding the World Heavyweight title for the vast majority of the group's time.

On the 4/14/14 edition of Raw, Evolution re-formed as agents of The Authority.

Tropes associated with Evolution:

  • Arch-Enemy: Orton, once he broke away and turned face. This would be major reason for his hatred for Triple H over the years. The Shield after their return.
  • Badass Creed:
    • "If you want to play, you gotta pay."
    • "In life, you either adapt or perish."
  • Continuity Nod: In a world where most storylines disappear after three months, it took years for Randy Orton to get over Evolution turning on him. In fact, one could argue that it was this event that began Randy's in-character descent from the suave, arrogant Legend Killer to the sadist known as the Viper. It was expected that whenever he had a storyline with another former member, the stable would be brought up, especially if that former member happened to be Triple H.
  • The Brute: Batista
  • Expies: Of NWA/WCW's The Four Horsemen, with Triple H in the Ric Flair role, and Flair himself as J.J. Dillon.
  • Fatal Flaw: Pride and Ambition were what tore the original incarnation of Evolution apart. Both Batista and Orton were young, rising stars, hungry for success, while it was obvious to everyone else that Evolution was Hunter's attempt to keep a stranglehold on the World Title and get out of Shawn Michaels's shadow. This is why the next incarnation of Evolution is more unstable but more likely to last; Batista and Orton are a full decade Older and Wiser and have had massive amounts of success, enough to be considered on the same level as Hunter himself. They don't have that same drive anymore nor do they need Hunter to get anywhere in the business. At the same time, however, their egos have grown match their former mentor's — the only thing preventing that from getting in the way is the fact that this is an alliance of convenience rather than need, seeing as they only reunited to get rid of The Shield.
  • Five-Bad Band:
  • Four Philosophy Ensemble: Triple H is the Cynic, Ric Flair is the Optimist, Randy Orton is the Realist and Batista is the Apathetic.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: Triple H is the Rational, Ric Flair is the Artisan, Batista is the Guardian and Randy Orton is the Idealist.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar : Their return episode in 2014 saw them mock The Shield after orchestrating and finishing a mugging of the enemy trio. Said mocking included biting their "Believe in the Shield" catchphrase, just with Evolution's name placed in instead. Said episode took place in Birmingham, Alabama. Twitter had a field day with it, which was no doubt part of the reason this became the trending hashtag representing the event.
  • Heel-Face Turn: Orton after he was ousted from the group after winning the World Heavyweight Title, then later Batista, after winning the Royal Rumble and deciding on staying on Raw and challenge for the World Heavyweight title. In 2007, for a one-off appearance, the stable itself (sans Orton, who understandably didn't trust them) reunited as faces.
  • It's All About Me: As time wore on, it became very clear the group was about Triple H and his quest to hold on to the World Heavyweight Championship.
  • Mascot: Eugene was this of sorts. Chris Jericho tried to warn him that Triple H was using him, but since Eugene's favourite wrestler was Triple H and him being "special", it didn't help much.
  • Mooks: The new incarnation seems to have them in the form of nearly a dozen heel midcarders that Triple H seems to be able to call upon at will. Justified since Trips is now an onscreen (and offscreen) authority figure.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: Triple H did this twice when he preemptively turned on Randy Orton and then Batista. Unlike Orton, Batista saw it coming.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: They've given plenty of these to their foes.
  • Older than They Look/Irony: Despite Batista being one of the two superstars (along with Randy Orton) pushed as "the future" of the business in Evolution, Batista is, in fact, several months older than Triple H (both born in 1969, Batista in January, Trips in July)
    • Triple H has much more years of experience in wrestling than Batista, however.
  • Oh Crap: Both Flair and Triple H has epic one when Batista decides to stay on Raw and challenge for the World Heavyweight Title rather than go to Smackdown and challenge for the WWE Title
    • Orton also had a pretty epic one when, right after being hoisted up onto Batista's shoulders, he saw Triple H give him the gladitorial thumbs-down. Cue electric chair drop and asskicking.
  • Putting the Band Back Together: In 2007 on Raws 15th Anniversary Episode, the did this, although, only for that night, and only with Flair, Triple H and Batista who was all faces at this point, except Orton who was a heel and didn't trust them.
    • Seems to be heading this way in Triple H's war with Daniel Bryan, only with an odd combination of Kane and Stephanie replacing Ric Flair.
    • Officially went this way with the ending of the 4/14/14 episode of RAW, when they came out to finish off The Shield after setting the up Hounds of Justice to be mugged by 11 heel midcarders.
    • In the 4/28/14 edition of RAW, it were to seem that Ric Flair is going to reunite with the others, thus making the faction complete. Unfortunately for them, he gives The Shield his personal endorsement.
  • Red Baron: "The Nature Boy" Ric Flair, "The Game" Triple H, "The Animal" Batista, "The Legend Killer" Randy Orton.
  • Start My Own: Orton would later form Legacy, with Evolution as blue print.
  • Start of Darkness: Randy's ousting from Evolution is widely agreed upon to be the starting point of his descent from the suave "Legend Killer" to the cold and sadistic "Viper." Evolution left its mark on Randy through his insanity, his hatred of Triple H (and to a lesser extent, Batista), and his own power stable: the Legacy. Through this, one can argue that Evolution turning on him is what defined Randy's entire career. Only recently has he managed to get over it.
  • Sharp-Dressed Man: All four of them.
  • Spanner in the Works: Eugene once accidentally cost Triple H a match against Chris Benoit. This then lead to him interfering and helping Benoit at a later time to retain his title. The latter turned out to be William Regal, who had let Eugene in the building after Triple H had beaten him for the previous offense.
  • Tag Along Kid: Eugene, who was an Unwitting Pawn for Triple H who was taking advantage of Eugene being a fanboy.
  • Too Many Belts: For a span of several months, Evolution had a monopoly on all of Raw's non-diva belts. Triple H was World Heavyweight Champion, Randy Orton was Intercontinental Champion, and Batista and Ric Flair held the World Tag Team titles. One would imagine that had any of the divas joined them, they'd probably would have had the Women's Title as well.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness:
    • After months of being an Unwitting Pawn to his idol Triple H, Eugene was swiftly disposed of when he accidentally cost the Game a match with Chris Benoit.
    • Orton was kicked out of the group after he won the World Heavyweight Title and refused to hand it to Triple H.
      • Green-Eyed Monster: Naturally, Trips wasn't happy about the fact that Orton won the title by beating Chris Benoit, whom Triple H had failed to beat for that same title on several occasions.
    • Notably inverted with Batista, after he won the 2005 Royal Rumble - Triple H & Flair spent over a month trying to sway him to challenge for the WWE championship instead of Triple H's coveted World Heavyweight Championship, under the pretense of Evolution holding both World titles; only for Batista to pull this on them by announcing his intent to face Triple H at WrestleMania.
Dungeon of DoomProfessional WrestlingThe Fabulous Kangaroos

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