Okay, I'm not going to bash any era, because they were all good in certain aspects. I've lived through 3 eras: Rock n Wrestling, AE and PG. I've always been biased because of fond childhood memories to the RW era, where they were less than PG rated, but had legends we all still talk about and rank in the top five of all time, most of the time...Hogan, Flair, Savage, Andre, even Heenan.
Now with that being said and admitting my biased upfront there's nobody that can convince me personally that the AE wasn't the best era, because it was IMO.
In the RW era and also in todays PE era one took their share of shit admitting that they are wrestling fans. You've all heard it "its fake" "why do watch that fake crap" "what are you 8yrs old"
Now when the AE was going it was shock TV and it was suddenly a shock to me that it was cool to be a wrestling fan. People were coming out of the closet and admitting with no shame that they liked wrestling. Even in professional settings people were using lines like "It doesn't matter who you are" "and that's the bottom line because stone cold said so" "and if you're not down with that, we got to words for ya" People were doing NWO two fingers touching other fingers..."just too sweeeeeeet!" They were doing the DDP bang. Saying "big poppa pump is your hook up." etc etc etc....It was more than mainstream pop culture. It was in style. The AE did that. Best era ever IMO. No other era I've seen has had that much impact on everyday society.