Rewriting Pro Wrestling History Vol. 3, Part 1: The New World Order
Before you delve into my rewrite of the New World Order, read the actual history of the nWo. It will provide some historical context to my rewrite.
Note: I will write the entire story in past tense.
"One! Two! Three!" WCW announcer Tony Schiavone announced as one of the most infamous incidents in WCW history occurred.
That fateful moment was the unofficial demise of the New World Order. The Fingerpoke of Doom reunited the warring Hollywood and Wolfpac factions. Injuries and lack of fan interest in the reunited nWo led to them disbanding later in 1999.
The nWo Wolfpac was my favorite group growing up in the glorious WCW days. I did not watch the WWF. WCW was all I ever knew.
Looking back at my WCW experience, it was all about the New World Order. Creatively speaking, the nWo was the lifeblood of WCW.
Fans were interested by the realistic storylines the nWo presented. It was truly a takeover angle. Overall, the nWo angle was brilliant, especially in 1996 and 1997. Hulk Hogan's heel turn was the perfect catalyst for the show.
Looking back, the end of the New World Order disappointed me since WCW mishandled the nWo angle from 1998-99. I have decided to rewrite the New World Order angle out of frustration from the failure of that angle.
The nWo angle was flawlessly executed from Hogan's heel turn in 1996 to Starrcade 1997.
Part one of my rewriting history article will address the match result of Starrcade 1997 to the battle between the nWo Wolfpac and Hollywood at Fall Brawl in 1998.
Before I begin, I will address some general issues about the nWo and WCW. I believe these issues did not ruin the overall quality of the nWo angle but certainly did not help it.
In my rewrite, the nWo will not exceed 10 members. Thirty members diluted the quality of the nWo.
The Hollywood and Wolfpac factions would be around five to seven members each. The whole WCW roster should not have been in either faction.
I am not taking into account the creative control Hulk Hogan and Kevin Nash had over their characters. It is a major mistake to give any wrestler complete creative control over their character.
If I were running WCW, the nWo would be the main focus but not the only focus. Their inability to concentrate on anything other than the nWo was a long-term mistake because not all angles last forever.
Bret Hart was the hottest commodity in WCW after the Montreal Screwjob. Fans were incredibly supportive of Hart as he went on to WCW.
It was a mistake to have him interfere in the main event between Sting and Hollywood Hogan. It was also a major mistake for him to be a heel. He was way too over with the fans for him to be a heel.
Instead, he faced Shawn Michaels' longtime friend Kevin Nash at Starrcade. The buildup to the match can be based off the Kliq's influence in ruining Bret Hart's career. Emotions flew high that day since Scott Hall was also a part of the Kliq.
It divided the nWo's attention between Nash vs. Hart and Hogan vs. Sting.
After Bret Hart made Kevin Nash submit to the Sharpshooter, the main event was upon us. Hulk Hogan faced Sting for the World Heavyweight Championship.
Sting won cleanly after a fantastic 20-minute match. Hulk Hogan lost his rematch at Souled Out thanks to accidental interference from Kevin Nash.
By early 1998, the nWo members at the time were Hogan, Nash, Hall, Syxx, Randy Savage, Scott Steiner, Miss Elizabeth, Eric Bischoff, Rick Rude, Scott Norton and Buff Bagwell. Scott Steiner joined the nWo after turning on his brother, Rick, at Souled Out.
Was splitting the New World Order a good idea?
However, tensions were building between Hulk Hogan and Kevin Nash. Scott Hall and Randy Savage declared their allegiance to Nash, infuriating Hogan.
As a result, Nash, Hall and Savage were forced to win matches on Nitro against jobbers to maintain their nWo membership. They successfully did so. Syxx was kicked out of the nWo after losing a match to Chris Jericho.
It was only a matter of time before civil war erupted.
There were two main events at Spring Stampede. Sting vs. Ric Flair for the title was the first one. No nWo involvement there.
The second main event was Hulk Hogan vs. Bret Hart. Hart and Hogan feuded since the nWo demanded retribution for what Hart did to Nash at Starrcade and Hall at Souled Out.
Pandemonium hit when Hulk Hogan was about to defeat Bret Hart. Hogan was going for his second leg drop when Kevin Nash smacked Hogan with a chair.
Since the referee in the match was aligned with WCW, he did not call for a disqualification. Scott Hall then put Hart's arm over Hogan's chest for the three count.
There was anarchy in the anarchist faction. Nobody knew what was going to happen next. The civil war was underway!
nWo Wolfpac vs. nWo Hollywood
On the Nitro after Spring Stampede, there was a massive brawl between Kevin Nash and his group of Konnan, Randy Savage, Scott Hall, Miss Elizabeth and Rick Rude all put on the red and black for the Wolfpac.
Hulk Hogan realized the Civil War was on and announced his nWo be called nWo Hollywood with Buff Bagwell, Scott Norton, Curt Hennig, Scott Steiner and Eric Bischoff.
The Wolfpac were the fan favorites and nWo Hollywood was the clear heel faction. Defections and overall intrigue kept the civil war angle intriguing.
Rick Rude betrayed the Wolfpac to join Hollywood. Curt Hennig defected from Hollywood to the Wolfpac, but defected back to Hollywood a week later.
Lex Luger defected from WCW to join the Wolfpac. Konnan left the Wolfpac to go back to Mexican wrestling promotion AAA.
Sting teased joining nWo Hollywood but quickly ripped off the black and white to reveal a WCW shirt. Hollywood then unsuccessfully tried to recruit Ric Flair and the rest of the Four Horsemen.
Hollywood successfully recruited Lex Luger to join them. But a week later, the Wolfpac wooed him away and Luger turned on Hollywood.
The spring of 1998 was a very unstable time for the nWo and WCW.
Sting, Bret Hart and Ric Flair were all vying for the title. Goldberg was emerging as a monster face. His undefeated run was still well intact. He was having a nice run as United States Champion.
The New World Order was largely absent from the title picture. This helped focus the story away from the title and onto the fracture of the nWo.
Bash at the Beach
It was a war of attrition until Bash at the Beach 1998, the two-year anniversary of the nWo.
More buildup continued until Hulk Hogan faced Kevin Nash and Scott Hall at Bash at the Beach. Hulk Hogan had a mystery tag team partner.
The handicap match was a fantastic match. Then towards the end of the match, Lex Luger hit Scott Hall with Hall's trademark cattle prod.
Luger was the second man.
Hollywood won the tag team match. They gained a major victory in a pivotal battle in the war for nWo supremacy.
But the Wolfpac still had an ace up their sleeve.
Sting joined the Wolfpac on an episode of Nitro. It was an absolutely epic scene. Fans were going berserk since Sting had been teasing joining the Wolfpac for months.
Sting, Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, and Randy Savage challenged Hollywood to a War Games match at Fall Brawl.
Hogan, overconfident of Hollywood's supremacy at Bash at the Beach, accepted under one condition: the losing team must disband.
The New World Order as we knew it was coming to an end, regardless of the outcome.
The Wolfpac vs. Hollywood feud culminated at Fall Brawl in a War Games match.
The rules of the War Games match were very complex. The first team member to submit or be knocked unconscious ended the match. There were no pins.
The Bret Hart vs. Ric Flair match for the title was secondary to the final battle of a memorable war.
The winner of the match would be allowed to keep their stable. The loser had to permanently disband their group.
Stakes could not be any higher. As a response to this, Hulk Hogan paid The Giant a massive amount of money to join Hollywood.
Wolfpac members Scott Hall, Kevin Nash, Sting and Randy Savage vs. Hollywood members Hulk Hogan, Lex Luger, Scott Steiner, and The Giant for the fate of the nWo in a War Games match.
Could this be any more epic?
Stay tuned for the ending!
Thanks for reading!
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