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Rebooking the WWF in 1993


Liam O'Rourke

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So for this week's podcast we are returning to our booking committee format for a discussion Rebooking the WWF in 1993, a very interesting time that saw the company struggle to decide on a new direction. We're looking to get some feedback on what you think needed to be done to make things succeed during a period where popularity fell.

 

Starting as everything was on January 1st 1993, what do you book for WrestleMania 9? What do you do with the returning Hulk Hogan? Do you stick with Bret Hart as a top guy or try with somebody else? What do you do with the titles? Who would you be looking to use better than they did at the time?

 

As always, we'll be reading the best feedback/ideas on the show and crediting you accordingly. So what would you have done?

 

EDIT - Our show Rebooking the WWF in 1993, featuring many of your contributions, is now online and available to listen to at the following link: http://squaredcirclegazette.podbean.com/mf/web/angm69/SCG_Radio_99_-_Rebooking_The_WWF_in_1993.mp3
 

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Bam Bam Bigelow definitely deserved better than he got from the middle to the end of 93. He came back in pretty hot against Boss Man at the Rumble, had a nixed match against Kamala at Wrestlemania and the odd non decisive match like the Raw match against Jannetty. His two matches with Hacksaw and Bret at KOTR just displayed his versibility agression and talent. Even coming off the losing end in the latter.

 

Then the shit hit the fan  (or in this case the water hit the flames) and his stock began to slowly decrease ending up in the horror that is/was the 4 Doinks at Survivor Series where he just came off as a tattooed buffoon.

 

Problem being there was just too many scary heels at the time (Doink/Yoko) so it's hard to say what other options were available.

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I always really wanted to see Bret Hart vs Ultimate Warrior at the Rumble like originally planned. Well when i heard about the plan years later. It would have probably been a horrible match but, still a spectacle non the less. Also, Hogan vs Hart at Summerslam for the same reason.

 

Anyway, the correct answer here is get Randy Savage away from the fucking commentary desk and back in the ring regularly.

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Id have Tatanka beat Shawn Michaels for the IC title at wrestlemania. Keep Hogan winning belt off Yokozuna.

 

Id have brought back the womens title earlier in the year and had a tournament with Sherri, Luna, Blaze and Nakano making the semis and have the semi finals and final at king of the ring to run along side the mans king of the ring tournament.

 

Id also have had Bret Hart vs Hulk Hogan for the title with Bret winning at king of the ring and have Yokozuna win the king of the ring tournament.

 

Summerslam have Bret vs Yokozuna. Yokozuna wins the belt back then anti USA programme starts leading to bodyslam challenge. Luger slams him and then at Survivor Series Luger wins the title.

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Yoko would still win the rumble

Hogan would help Bret but face yoko at kotr.

Hogan beats yoko at kotr

Bret defeats hogan at ss passing the torch moment.

Lex would stay heel for a while and face Bret at survivor series in a loosing effort but showing good heart for a face turn and rumble win leading to a face v face at wm10.

The Stieners are the dominant team destroying as many jobbers as possible.

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Should start by saying I love 1993 more than most so mine won't be that revolutionary. But here's what I'd like to fix.

 

WWF Title - I'm torn on whether I'd like to keep it on Bret all year but the 1993 KOTR was so utterly perfect that he's got to drop it. I'd have Yokozuna win at WM, beat Hogan at KOTR and then lose the title to Luger who'd drop it back to Bret at WM10. As simple and as clean as that. Luger would go over Bigelow at Survivor Series 1993 and Yoko again at the 94 Rumble. Bret eliminates Owen to win the Rumble after their break-up in the tag title match and then Owen challenges Bret for WM10 and Bret does double duty as per.

 

IC Title - The thing I dislike most in 1993 is that Randy Savage was sidelined prematurely. It also annoys me that we never got a run of Savage matches against Shawn Michaels or Bret Hart. I'm fixing that here. Savage challenges Michaels for WrestleMania 9 and they open the show with a barn burner that doesn't have a finish. Crush then takes on Michaels at KOTR with Savage in his corner before Savage challenges Michaels again at SummerSlam and puts over HBK. I'd then build to HBK's team vs. Savage's team at Survivor Series where Crush would turn on Randy to start their program while Razor Ramon would pin Michaels to kick off theirs.

 

Tag Titles - This one is easy. The Steiners beat Money Inc. at the Royal Rumble, beat the Headshrinkers at Mania, Money Inc in a rematch at KOTR and Men on a Mission in a babyface match at SummerSlam. The Quebecers upset them in a multi-man tag at Survivor Series and then win the belts in early 1994 but not until the Steiners have had that brilliant match with Bret & Owen on colliseum video.

 

Undertaker - I'd still do the Giant Gonzalez angle because it was a brilliant visual. Taker would beat him clean at WrestleMania 9 though and he'd never be seen again. I'd then have Yoko cause Taker an injury to give him the summer off. Taker would then come back to face Yoko at Survivor Series but would lose shockingly to give Yoko steam heading into the Rumble match with Lex. Taker would get the fuck kicked out of him in the 1994 Rumble match to explain his next absence by your next hot heel - Diesel.

 

Hogan - You'd have to use him at WM9, it'd be madness not to. I'd put him in there with Razor Ramon. Ramon would get some mileage out of challenging Hulk prior to WM and Hulk would go over to ready him for Yoko at the KOTR. Then Hulk would disappear and I'd still do the Ramon/123 Kid stuff which was awesome. I'd have Razor & Kid vs. Money Inc at SummerSlam though. The singles matches were shite.

 

The Bret Hart/Lawler stuff is in tact at SummerSlam too. Should mention that. Too perfect not to be. Speaking of Perfect, he's lost in the shuffle for me after KOTR. I'd just let him put over Bigelow at SummerSlam so Triple B is ready for Lex.

 

Ludvig Borga never gets a flight out of Finland. Doink doesn't turn babyface. Adam Bomb does a Goldberg five years early.

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Wouldn't argue with most of Rick's, I'd definitely change this bit though:

 

Taker would get the fuck kicked out of him in the 1994 Rumble match to explain his next absence by your next hot heel - Diesel.

 

I'd change the beatdown on Taker in the Rumble, purely because the exact same thing happened in 93. I'd keep the Yoko VS Taker title match instead, because I think it set-up their Survivor Series casket match better. This means I'd need Yoko winning back the strap before then- Survivor Series seems best.

 

Anyway, back to 93 as intended.

 

Let Lugar win the title at SummerSlam as the moment was right, but get it off of him at the next PPV because his momentum won't last. Have Flair interfere in the match to start a programme between the two culminating in a WrestleMania 10 match.

 

Before then, I'd keep Flair warm by sticking him in with Hogan at WrestleMania 9. He won't go over, obviously (because Hogan), but we finally get those two on a WWE PPV and Hogan isn't wasted in a tag match with fucking Brutus. Flair has plenty of options at KOTR and SummerSlam- a Savage rematch first (with Flair winning) followed by a first PPV match against Bret (Lawler screwing Bret).

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Does anyone keep Naitch? Not seen him mentioned yet.

 

Personally I have him and Lawler feuding on top and no-one watches it despite critical acclaim and I get my p45 early doors.

 

I didn't think that was really an option. It seemed to be agreed early in 1993. I'd do Flair and Hogan at WrestleMania. Just because with hindsight, it'd kill WCW in 1994.

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I'm up for keeping the nature boy, in fact I'd be bang up for a new horseman esque stable. Starting with Flair & perfect with heenan. However this develops later on in to the year.

It starts with flair, perfect and heenan, generally running wild in the upper mid card, no one coming close to them due to some help from new friends, such as HBK to name but one.

 

After Bret beats Yoko at WM, he gets the attention of flair, meaning all included become the main event focus and the discussion of who the real world champion is, along with who the best their is, was and ever will be - queue slick Ric ramping up the nature boy shtick.

 

As we get to mid 93, I'd mix things up a bit and develop the Horsemen concept. I'd have perfect drop the ball on occasion, losing to the likes of an up and coming Razor, or Owen Hart. I'd then have HBK wangle himself in to position, in to the ear of heenan and flair with the idea that he will be the real flair protege. Not only is he young and talented, he's got the looks, he knows he's sexy, he even drives the girls wild... flair likes the sound of this.

This will lead to flair and HBK kicking Hennig to the curb and due to his want to retaliate, he turns face and sides with Bret.

I'd have this happen just before summerslam and have flair go over Bret at summerslam, capturing the gold, with a tear in his eye. (Due to you guessed it, shenanigans).

 

As we get to survivor series, id book a stipulation match. Due to the shenanigans which cost Bret the belt, Tunney would decide that if Bret's team beat flairs team, he would get a 1-1 shot at the gold later that night.

The teams would be Flair, HBK & a soon to be fired/cannon fodder nasty boys against Bret, Perfect and Steiner's.

Bret and Perfect make very quick work of the nasty boys. HBK goads Hennig in to a brawl out of the ring and back stage (double count out) and nastys carry on giving Hennig a nastysizing, leaving Flair alone in the ring against Bret and the Steiner's...

... Vince has already started verbalising "We have a new cham... no, no we don't" as the Steiner's attack Bret.

Bret gets beat due to the Steiner's turn, HBK limps back to the ring and Heenan announces the new, 4 horsemen.

 

I know this is 93 focused but fuck it, the horsemen aren't just for Christmas.

 

I'd base my company around these guys going in to and through 94, having Bret as the main face nemesis for the time being. He will align with bulldog and Lex to try and take down the nature boy, the sexy boy, the booty daddy and the dogging faced gremlin.

 

Still lots of other fun to have with Yoko, razor, Diesel, Owen, possibly Hogan. But not the undertaker as he's facing life due to the Tunney esque bribery and execution of him that took place on your previous pod cast. Clarence Mason wouldn't have saved him.

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