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Drogoth

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PostSubject: Best faction?   Wed Mar 14, 2012 1:18 am

Thoughts? Personally I think they got number one right but I would have put The Ministry of Darkness higher...but then of course I would! Wink (Picked this up because I have Undertaker as one of my fave athletes on FB and it was one of 'his' posts today)

http://www.wwe.com/videos/wwecom-countdown-top-10-factions-26003117
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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Wed Mar 14, 2012 5:13 am

Didn't really watch the video, but I can tell you what my easy #1 pick would be.

nWo, all the way. Absolutely the most revolutionary and important wrestling stable in history, bar none.

The worst?

X-Factor.

X-pac, Albert, and Justin Credible. Who were these guys supposed to be together? What was even the point? What did they even stand for? What did it mean? Why form the group? Everything about the actual group baffled me, and then it didn't even last long enough for my curiosity of why the hell that stable existed, wasn't even notable enough to care to find out by the time it disbanded.

Even to this day, I cannot think of a single reason why X-Factor was even a thing. Even their theme song was the suckiest, most forgettable theme ever put to an entrance. Also why was their titantron pink? I really don't get it. I just don't.
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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Wed Mar 14, 2012 10:16 am

The nWo was one of the greatest angles in the history of the business.

But factions begin and end with the Four Horsemen.

Without the influence that those guys had as a stable, and without the booking that went with them to show the power of the unit together, no faction - including the nWo - would have even got further than a booker's pencilled notes.

The nWo was simply a 90s Four Horsemen. DX was simply Triple H trying to be a Horseman.

It always was the Horsemen, and it will always be the Horsemen.

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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Wed Mar 14, 2012 10:22 am

However, I will add that rating DX above the nWo is clearly bollocks.

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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Wed Mar 14, 2012 11:16 am

Agree with you on that. FH have to be one. Even the nWo must acknowledge a bit debt to the likes of the Horsemen. Also agree on DX. As good as they were they didn't have the same impact as nWo.

Maybe the nWo have had their legacy watered down. Not saying that should have counted against them but the number of people that ended up being in their colours, white, red or whatever, may hurt them. No more than this being a wwe list, mind!

What about The Flock? I was a little surprised they were not in. But not seen enough of some of the others to say they deserved their spot.
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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Wed Mar 14, 2012 12:25 pm

The nWo was harmed by later WCW booking that watered them down and saw them play a part in WCWs decline, but there's no doubt that in its original format it was one of the angles of the 90s (I say Austin/McMahon was the best). It wasn't totally original, but it was superb and it pretty much kicked wrestling into the attitude era.

But the Horsemen were something else. Four guys who could talk you into a building, talk their opponents out of it, brawl with te best of them, put on a technical wrestling clinic for an hour, then go out and party all night and look good doing it. They just had it all and everyone else in the company was second string to them. They ran the NWA and WCW when doing that still meant you were the man, and they still kept it going into the 90s. A fantastic set of wrestlers who did it first, did it best, and provided the template for everyone else to follow.

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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Wed Mar 14, 2012 12:42 pm

Of course I was outraged that the Trinity of Midnight wasn't included...No'varr didn't carry that hack The Reaper for all that time for nothing! Wink
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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Wed Mar 14, 2012 1:04 pm

Also, by the way...

No challenging my call on worst stable? No worse stables than X-Factor anyone would say was worse?
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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Wed Mar 14, 2012 1:44 pm

Good question...I have to admit that I'd stuggle to beat that. I can think factions that didn't make the list - New Breed, Blue World Order, Right to Censor - but I can't think of a worst one that X-Factor. Even the Oddities had a certain charm about them.

I always thought of X-Factor as a poor mans DX. Maybe because of ther X-Pac link. It's probably no secret that I never liked X-Pac. His whole image, attitude and just plain him - there was nothing I could like about him. So when I saw X-Factor (a good comic but a terrible TV show, by the way...Wink ) I just saw them as an attempt to follow that.

Maybe my vote for another bad one was the Corporate Ministry. I loved the Ministry, as you might expect, with it's whole satanic, gothic imagery. I also liked the idea of them feuding with Vince's Corporation and the idea of Taker being able to twist the mind of Vince.

Then they decided that Vince was the higher power behind Taker tormenting Vince. Which I saw as them trying to shock you but failing to have any reasoning, really. Then when the two factions joined they just became generic and it also left so many people in the faction that they suffered from the later nWos bloated nature.

Plus the change was laughable. I still smile at the vision of Trips being, oooo, a little bit gothic now because he was wearing a cross with his bare chest and leather jacket! So I saw that as two good ideas spoiled by a third.
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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Wed Mar 14, 2012 2:49 pm

The Higher Power angle was one of the most diabolical things they've ever done.

Poor stables? Well there was the UnAmericans. Regal, Storm, Test, Christian. Potentially could have been a good unit, but the WWE never booked them to do anything much, and never pulled the trigger on allowing Regal to really use his promo skills to sell the angle.

The Truth Commission under Don "Cyrus the Virus" Callis was pretty bloody awful as I remember. I'm sure I'll think of more in time.

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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Wed Mar 14, 2012 2:52 pm

As for the Trinity of Midnight, it was less a stable and more a case of the Reaper doing charity work to help out some poor disadvantaged Northerner.

You got a couple of main events out of feuding with me - face it, no-one was going to book you there otherwise.

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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Wed Mar 14, 2012 2:56 pm

I'd forgotten the UnAmericans...Like you say a decent idea but one which you need to have guts to go with. Strange how they are reluctant to do that with a team of white wrestlers but yet are happy to play off the 'Arab' wrestlers.
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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Wed Mar 14, 2012 2:58 pm

Actually, looking up Test, anybody remember The Union?
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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Wed Mar 14, 2012 4:10 pm

oooh vaguely. Ken Shamrock was in that as well wasn't he?

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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Wed Mar 14, 2012 4:14 pm

He was indeed! I didn't remember them until I saw the names together than it rang some bells. I wouldn't have been able to tell you what they were called, mind! Apparently they were led by Foley and also had Show in there. They were also known as aka U.P.Y.O.U.R.S.: Union of People You OUghtta Respect, Son....ahem
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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Thu Mar 15, 2012 6:59 am

X Factor was terrible, I concur. I guess someone just thought "Hm, X-Factor. Sounds like the potential name for a group. Now, what wrestlers aren't we doing anything with?"

What about Hassan & Daivari? Tag team more than a faction I know but didn't they used to come out to an entrance video of the 9/11 attacks? Fail!

Right To Censor. The Goodfather... I used to have a Steven Richards RTC wrestling figurine in a shirt and tie, hahaha!

I also vote nWo as best faction
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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Thu Mar 15, 2012 8:05 am

Totally agree on H&D. Those sorts of gimmicks always seem on a hiding to nothing, for me. I'm all for stuff like Jericho/Punk, near the knuckle and with a bit of bite. But when it plays to what is essnetially people's base racisim then it's gone too far for me.

I didn't actually think RTC were that bad. Good base idea.

Still vote for FH as the best faction!

One team I don't think got a fair crack was Seratonin. Like a number of Raven ideas I thought it had potential but was killed by poor booking. They never seemed to win and were not given much to do until they fell apart. But the core idea, of Raven turning wrestlers to a darker side, appealed.

Plus there's always the vampire faction that never was. Thorn, Ariel, Gangrel...but Vince doesn't like vampires. Shame that, Vince, as whatever my views (I love 'em!) vampires did go very hot just after that!
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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Thu Mar 15, 2012 12:01 pm

Completely disagree with Right to Censor being a bad stable at all. They were one of the BEST stables ever. And should be regarded somewhere near the middle of a top 10 list, even. It was brilliant from start to finish. (In fact, I even was inspired to have Mike Rocket's heat method be a bit similar, by intention as well, tbh. Rocket had a little of RTC Stephen Richards in him.)

RTC was a glorious parody of a real life bunch of wacko's, an extremist television watch-dog group called the Parents Television Council, headed by an known fundamentalist extremist and were even responsible for fabricating slanderous reports, and secretly providing funding to religous hate groups. Sadly, this PTC is still around, today, but have much less power than they did.

Anyway, the story goes that this group was recently on a kick of harassing professional wrestling at the time, and trying to get it removed off of television by strongarming WWE's sponsors into dropping them and pressuring networks to not carry WWE anymore.

Vince McMahon responded by taking the real life issue and viciously satirizing it. And it reaaaaallly paid off. It even humilated the real life group so much that they eventually kind of backed off from bothering WWE, just as Vince had intended.

The Right To Censor was quite possibly the most effective heel stable in history, to the audience too. Not even the nWo at their worst ever generated quite as much heat from the audience as RTC did, and for what it was meant to do, they were probably the best at it. Crowds "got" the parody, and really ate it up. And by that, I mean, they were massively over as a faction that the crowd couldn't wait to boo, hiss and scream at every week. From the purposefully annoying entrance theme, and their great, creepy look, it was just awesome.

Not to mention that Stephen Richards really threw himself into the role and played it up perfectly with every inch of his ability, and I think it was probably the best gimmick he ever managed to play. The rest of the group, really did their best as well, and the biggest part of it's heel success is that when some of the most fun-loving characters were absorbed into the gimmick and became extremist cultists themselves, it felt like no one in WWE was safe.

As far as a villainous faction the RTC was probably the best ever done. It was done for a good reason, to spread awareness about a real problem, and generated nuclear heat. The cheers it provided whenever Richards flew into a rage or got his comeuppance, on the other hand, was about as big of an ovation as you can get.

I personally loved it, and always really wished this stable would come back, because in this day and age especially I think we need another right on parody nuclear heat magnet stable like this, again.

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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Thu Mar 15, 2012 12:37 pm

For me, Stevie Richards was always massively underrated both as a wrestler and as a performer. That guy could have a good contest with anyone, and RTC proved he could cut great promos as well.

And yes, RTC was a great faction.

Muhammad Hassan started in a gimmick which could have worked. Originally he was supposed to be a guy who challenged the post 9/11 racism and threw it back in the audience's face. Not a heel, but rather someone who challenged the expectation that the audience had that he would be one. He was to show up the massive overreaction of anti-Muslim sentiment after the tragedy. But instead the WWE lost confidence and went for he easy option, and it bit them MASSIVELY on the ass. Here in the UK Sky not only edited Smackdown to remove the "terrorist attack" scenes, but actually dragged WWE in and threatened to pull all their programming.

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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Thu Mar 15, 2012 1:04 pm

I remember that.

I'm not sure which is more controversial to WWE these days... Muhammad Hassan, or Chris Benoit.

I'm sure they'll go out of their way from now on to never mention either again.

Also, I agree about Hassan. There's heat and then there's going too far. I loved his gimmick at first. His being belligerent about wanting to be peaceful and ripping on Americans for "not letting my people be here in peace!" every week. That was gold, and I was on board for that.

But then when they actually started having his actions mirror real terrorist activity only to shrug his shoulders and go "who me?", that line was broken and one of the few times that I think a wrestling angle stepped over the line into personally offending me.

Mind you i'm a HUGE proponent for gay and lesbian rights and against homosexual defamation, but even I found Billy and Chuck to be frikkin' hilarious. And with Katie Vick, I never thought that angle was "offensive", just childish and stupid. But Hassan was where I really got offended, and they drew a real line there.

Because they let him go soon after that, and then never spoke his name again, I wonder if he's the other blacklisted name to join Chris Benoit in the "who?" category from now on.


P.S: His titantron NEVER showed the 9/11 attacks. It showed peaceful sky shots, buildings and bits of new york and peaceful every day crowds, as kind of a sarcastic "Look, everything is ok" image. Which the sarcasm of it was meant to make it seem annoying.
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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Thu Mar 15, 2012 1:54 pm

Agree on Katie Vick. I didn't get offended, I just thought it was a shoddy angle. I also didn't mind Billy and Chuck. But Hassan was a step too far. Like people have said if they had gone with the original angle then it would have been a real buzz. But they didn't and we got burned.
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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Thu Mar 15, 2012 2:27 pm

Katie Vick was just a tacky angle that never needed to be done rather than being genuinely offensive.

And I agree that the Billy and Chucky stuff was pretty harmless. Of course effeminate/gay gimmicks have one of the longest histories in wrestling, going right back to gorgeous George Wagner. The clever ones are the ones that make the haters look stupid, and if you get someone who plays it well, it can be hugely entertaining.

Wrestling has always played with stereotypes and trod that tightrope of being risky without being genuinely offensive. Nazi gimmicks (Baron Von Rascke), Dastardly Japanese or Russians, The Iron Sheik, Sergeant Slaughter's Iraqi sympathiser, snobbish Brits, the list goes on. It's actually surprising how much more often they get it right than wrong when you stop and thnk about it.

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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Thu Mar 22, 2012 11:01 pm

i was always a big fan of both nwo and dx. I always wonder what it would be like if nash and hall would have stayed in the wwf.

would nash, hall, hbk, and hhh been the original members of dx? Would it have been DX with a harder edge? A more goofy nwo?
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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Thu Mar 22, 2012 11:56 pm

I don't think you would have seen either, tbh. Had WCW not acquired the talent it did it really couldnt have then used their existing talent to spearhead a change in direction which allowed them to overtake the WWF. Had that not happened, WWF wouldn't have responded to kick itself up the arse and enter the Attitude era and the Monday Night Wars. There would have been no DX, HHH would probably have been let go by the WWE for not getting over.

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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Tue May 01, 2012 3:48 pm

If NWO and DX didn't happen, do you think WCW would have finished sooner, or would it have survived a lot longer? If HHH had been released by WWE, would he have gone to WCW and become the wrestler he is now in WCW instead?
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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Wed May 02, 2012 11:09 am

The problem with WCW is that they wasted the success they had with a series of bad decisions, bad bookers, bad ideas and old stars who wouldn't give the rub to the younger ones. They had a great idea in the nWo but did it to death. They had a great idea with who's side Sting was on and him taking on the nWo but wasted it with a poor finale.

I'm pretty sure that they would have gone to hell in a handbasket in the same amount of time.

The other thing is you mention Trips going to WCW. Well, they had him, didn't use him right and he went to WWE. So there's no gurantee if he had gone back they would have known what to do with him! Austin, Taker, Foley, Jericho...the list goes on of talent they had and lost.

So, personally, I think they would have screwed up just the same if they still had the same charlies in charge!
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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Wed May 02, 2012 12:42 pm

For the longest time, I also believed that bad booking, bad decisions, management incompetence, and a piss-poor product was what killed WCW.


I am now, just lately, starting to think that maybe I was wrong, and that in fact this might not be the case as I thought.

WCW was searching for a new deal at the time. TNT, and Ted Turner in general was going through a major change.

No matter how badly WCW did, Ted Turner loved wrestling so much, he would have gladly had them around forever, no matter how much of a risk he was taking.

However, once he was essentially out of power, and had no say in his company's decisions, anymore... the majority at Turner Broadcasting, felt that wrestling was an embarrassment and an albatross around their neck. Also it's been said that after Ted Turner no longer had a say in what they would air or broadcast, many TNT executives were angry that "wrasslin'" was still their strongest property, when they felt that their other tv product was "higher culture."


I'm starting to think that no matter how bad it ever might have gotten, that WCW would have steadily existed on Ted Turner's money no matter what, if they still had "Billionare Ted" in their corner after the merger.


But the main reason I am starting to change my opinion, lately, is because I finally have a nearly identical situation to finally compare it to, which I didn't before. And i'm finally starting to get it.

TNA's continued existence.

TNA right now, has all the same problems as WCW in it's final days. An absolutely piss-poor product, completely incompetent and inept management, godawful booking, nonsensical decisions, and generally, overall bad.

And despite me constantly saying for the last several years, that I would be surprised if TNA had 4 weeks left in them, it's finally become clear to me that no matter how many times I keep saying that, they aren't going ANYWHERE as long as they have Spike TV to endlessly back them and bail them out.

TNA is absoutely worse now than WCW ever was near it's final days, and TNA doesn't seem to be going anywhere soon, so now I am starting to think that it really was the fact that Ted Turner had endless pockets for WCW, and if Ted still were still calling the shots, everything TNA is right now, would have the words WCW Monday Nitro up on that stage, instead. With the same people doing the same thing right now.
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PostSubject: Re: Best faction?   Wed May 02, 2012 11:10 pm

On the one hand, Mike, you're right. Ted Turner ultimately losing control of the company that owned WCW, and the networks that aired it, was what put the final nail in the coffin and caused them to shut their doors. Interference from company suits into the way the business was run, concern at the way wrestling fit the company, and the lack of a concrete figurehead willing to indulge them all played a part.

HOWEVER, it's important to consider that if the company had been making money at the time, the corporate presence wouldn't have been a problem in the end. And they werent making money because they made some AWFUL business decisions. They wasted money like it was going out of fashion, they kept a grossly inflated roster that was bing paid not to work, they wasted hundreds of thousands of dollars on gimmicks and guest appearances which made them sod all, and they threw away matches that should have been making them money. In the space of a year they went from something like a 40 million profit to a 60 million loss.

Had WCW been run properly and had a tight control on its finances, had it still been making the sort of money it was before the egos concerned pissed it all up the wall, then I guarantee the networks and suits wouldn't have cared how "low brow" it was. Then it would have fitted VERY well with the company profile and they would have been perfectly happy with WCWs presence.

They killed it because it became a embarassng money pit.

As for the NWO question. Well, the NWO angle was part of a movement which ultimately caused WCWs success. But at the same time, it also kick-started the Monday Night Wars and caused the WWE to up its game and change direction. There is an argument that without the MNWs both companies would still be in existence plodding along quite happily.

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