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The Next Big Thing

The Truth of the Attitude Era

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I am an attitude era veteran. I loved wrestling back then so much, that I still love it now.

I have been gandering (aka hanging around) internet wrestling sites now for about 10 years. The attitude era was such a massive success that for me anyway I was vastly interested in it when away from the TV screen.

It can attribure that the AE was such a resounding success that I have remained a fan ever since then, no matter what. We are all so forlorn constantly about the state of wrestling now - Pining for things to change and go back to the way they used to be. Were we spoiled? The answer is a resounding yes.

I started following wrestling in the rock n' roll era, which I prefer to call the cartoon era. It was a cartoon for me, Ultimate Warrior, Hulk Hogan, Savage. Evil characters like Million Dollar Man Ted Di Biase and countless others like Earthquake, just like all the best cartoons at the time. My generation loved this time of wrestling, but I REALLY REALLY wonder what actual grown up wrestling fans were thinking.

It's different these days. The follower has access to anything they want in this media savvy world. They can have inside feed on any potential happening, actual happening, or rumoured (often bullshit) happening. People knew in advance that WWE was turning into a PG product. People know that Alberto Del Rio is probably going to win Money In The Bank or that that new vignette out is going to be for Jericho or Undertaker. I can't help but feel that a lot of the sparkle is lost in wrestling, largely due to an internet presence.

We are currently dealing with a TV product alike the aforementioned cartoon era. But unlike those times, we have an outlet to share opinion on - The internet. The more we read on the internet the more scepticism there is on the WWE and TNA. We are restless for originality, which we had in abundance in the Attitude Era.


The 3/4 year period of the attitude era brought back old fans, brought in new fans and created afew lifers. I was in the former and now the latter group. Great feuds, great moments, great matches and eventful superstars made it a joy to watch. Every week was something to look forward to - At this time wrestling was not the dud that it is now.

Once the attitude era tailed off however and the acquisition of wCw bloated the roster, wrestling has never gotten near the heights of the AE years. For hardcore wrestling fans, they still watch it, even if they find what they see excrutiating every week. It has been getting like that bit by bit, year by year. But is what the whole entertainment landscape of the moment not just the natural progression?

After the cartoon era ended, WWE underwent a long term transition. No longer able to target through roided up beacons of charisma, a new emphasis was forced, and it was purely evolution.

Through 1993 to 1996 the WWE was represented by believable champions like Bret Hart and Shawn Michaels. There were other champs in this time but these two were their aces. These years were a development process for WWE. With competition existent, business was as barren as it had ever been.

The point is, the people who turned away during the New Generation era (like me) yearned for the cartoon era. Maybe not the ridiculous gimmicky culture there was, but the entertainment factor. For those who sat through the 5 or so years of wrestling not quite having the kick that drew them in originally, were richly rewarded for their perseverence with the Attitude Era. For everybody who had ever followed wrestling, the Attitude Era spoiled us all.

Since AE ended, there have been approximately 10 years in the wilderness. I have enjoyed it, and obviously anyone who reads this has enjoyed it or they wouldn't be reading this, but there has been a lot of scrutiny to get through. On the internet, everyone can do the job. There is a wide belief that Dolph Ziggler should be thrust into the limelight. Years ago you would just have to wait and see. Now, it is expected to happen, so much to the point that if it doesn't happen people are going to rag on the product. Ziggler is currently carrying himself very well. It wouldn't hurt if he still had the US title going into Mania next year, it would give the belt prestige and his opponent equal amounts. There shouldn't be any needless pressure. We all want to see Punk v Ziggler in the future but save it until they've tried all the filler feuds.

I am rambling here but this is what the internet gives us. I am already venturing way ahead of what is going on and anybody agreeing or disagreeing with the above statement is thinking far too ahead of themselves as well. Likewise, this is the same with every other topic.

I can't help but feel that a lot of the sparkle is lost in wrestling, largely due to an internet presence.
I quoted the above earlier. Vince McMahon is finally starting to do what he should have done year's ago, and thats realise there is an internet out there. For so long the internet has been to the detriment of WWE (It's all a tough love thing really though), when it should have been a way forward. In 2011 seismic shifts have happened, which include:

CM Punk becomes a figurehead
They actually acknowledge Cena's popularity
Another internet darling Daniel Bryan rose to prominence unexpectedly (say what you want, but these days have the MITB case is pretty much like having a title, or as Triple H would say "A big bullseye on your
Zack Ryder gets on television
Vince finally gets it. We hate the current era, we loved what happened back in the late 90's. He can't recreate it, the world is a completely different place, people will have their own idea's and spread their message out and hinder what the product could be. Vince McMahon is now using the internet to try understand his most loyal customers better so he can make them happy. We wish to be spoiled by another attitude era but it's never going to happen. Hopefully we will be spoiled again soon.

Get ready for the Interactive Era

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Updated 12-06-2011 at 06:43 PM by The Next Big Thing

Tags: attitude era


  1. Rick Starr's Avatar
    Good blog. While I myself did like the Attitude Era, I think what the WWE really needs is is some solid competition. That's why the WWE started The Attitude Era in the first place: Because they were getting their ass kicked by WCW every week. The Attitude Era was targeted a different age group (14 and up), and stirred up new viewers. After WWE won The Monday Night Wars, they slowly calmed things back down to the way they were back in the 80's, which was family entertainment.

    I wish TNA would get their act together and give them a good run, but they are just miles away from that right now. And I'm afraid if the WWE did do another "Attitude Era" at this point it might leave a bad taste in your mouth, because it wouldn't be done the right way for the right reasons.
    Updated 12-08-2011 at 03:32 AM by Rick Starr
  2. Theicon's Avatar
    good blog dont agree with star boy though TNA is going in the right direction with Roode as champ
  3. AJ1981's Avatar
    You've pretty much read my mind. I began watching wrestling the same time as you and stayed through thick and thin. I agree with you about Dolph Ziggler, he's doing great right now but with 'Mania right around the corner and all the hype for Cena/Rock it isn't the time for him to pushed into the main event. I think by next summer (possibly MITB) he'll be ready to headline. I also agree with Rick Starr the lack of proper competition has stiffled WWE, competition always brought out the best in the McMahons but TNA lack focus and direction at the minute. It's also made things difficult for talent. Wrestlers have no bargain power over pay and conditions and if you're face doesn't fit in WWE its difficult to gain the necessary exposure and experience to make it on the national stage

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