Killing Them Softly: Why Wrestling Stables Desperately Need Identities
Look at the picture, and think to yourself, which of the seven stand out?
Since the golden age of pro wrestling, stables have disbanded as quickly as they’ve been formed, as it seems that there hasn’t been a long-term viable solution through which stables can enjoy both longevity and success.
I mention longevity and success in the same sentence because both are essential. In its essence, a stable (most of which have been heel, as I fail to recall any face stables at this time) is meant to gain heat from the crowd and have nominal-to-complete control of its future and of its members.
The Nexus follows the timeless heel stable movement, which dictates that a group of wrestlers should make their presence known and that their actions can have dire consequences if their demands are not meant.
For the Outsiders (new World order), they wanted complete control of the rival wrestling organization, as the main belief of fans at the time was that WWE had infiltrated their beloved World Championship Wrestling arena and were conspiring to make sure that it suffers its ultimate demise.
What they did not know was that, kayfabe or not, it was exactly what the trio of Nash, Hall, and Hogan achieved.
For those who are still reading, the nWo is not the blueprint of success of the stable of the 21st century.
Far from it.
But they did enjoy a short period of success when the angle was considered new and fresh. The idea of a coup piqued the interest of wrestling fans everywhere.
Of course, when talking about stables, one cannot simply pen an article without referencing The Four Horsemen at least once.
What made the group successful and what gave them longevity, above all, was simply the fact they were willing to put their respective face counterparts over in matches on television broadcasts and pay-per-views because this is what brought in tickets.
One other thing that the each of the members of the stable had: their own respective identities.
It is one more parallel that puts the Horsemen and Evolution under one roof, in that all of the members of the stable had their own identities and were being pushed into the spotlight.
In the case of the Horsemen, they held most of the NWA titles and wore them proudly on their shoulders.
As for Evolution, Randy Orton and Batista began to establish themselves in the tag team ranks, as well as in the Intercontinental Championship scene, so that when the time to act upon the directions of the team leader, it would seem less of a demeaning chore and more of a favor, as it would only take very little of their time.
This is where Legacy failed, and did so miserably. DiBiase and Rhodes did not have separate identities away from the WWE Championship that Orton craved more than anything else, as they are only now starting to come into their roles and are in the process of discovering themselves as wrestlers and entertainers.
Now, go back to the beginning of the article; is the question more clear now?
Among the seven, only Wade Barrett has truly made his presence felt through his mic work and his demands.
I’m not insinuating that the WWE will not do anything with the rest, while the feud between the good of RAW and the evil of Nexus continues to unfold every week, but I’m suggesting that, perhaps, they do not have to wait for Summerslam to expand on each person’s role.
Let’s review the anarchy spread by the sadistic seven:
- They made their debut on June 7 and eventually demanded contracts, which they now have.
- Then they sent Vince McMahon to the kayfabe recovery hospital after he was about to take credit for their actions.
The Nexus have now been in the WWE for an entire month and all they have accomplished is getting contracts.
If there is another grand purpose for which they have united, now is the time we find out what exactly it is and this is where they need to be booked carefully.
If the Nexus do make their individual singles debuts, they can lose individually.
At this point, the Summerslam match seems to interest a few. Sure, you do care about what happens to the Nexus, you do care about what happens to Cena and Bret Hart among others.
But do you care about what happens to Heath Slater?
Do you care if Michael Tarver gets taken out indefinitely?
Another thing that needs to be pointed out: Evolution, nWo, The Horsemen have all one thing in common.
Not only did they dominate the wrestlers, they dominated the title scene.
The Horsemen carried most of the NWA titles and Evolution, at one point, carried all the top tier titles on RAW.
For Nexus to join the short list of successful stables, all they need to do is follow the blueprint of success that Evolution and The Horsemen mapped out.
Barrett has his guaranteed title shot which he will capitalize on, sooner or later.
Now is the time for the Nexus to stop with the random attacks and systematically taking over Monday nights.
If not, all they will become is a parody of the New World Order.
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