ON THE SOAPBOX
You horrid little creature!
Man, X-Pac doesn't even rate a "Sunshine?" He's really down the ladder, isn't he? Now all we have to see is how long before the hints start dropping about who he was on the phone with - "You know who we are," anyone?
I was all set to fire off a column about Unforgiven on Monday, only to have my cable cut out right before the Jericho-RVD match. So, we'll just scrap that idea and move right along.
I want to take a look at a feud in the making today. A story of two Canadian Brothers, and then look at the one that went before.
The current team is, of course, Edge and Christian. They've got great chemistry working against each other, and seem to be pulling off the anger well. But there was another feud that set the stage...
No, it wasn't Taker vs. Kane.
It was 1993. A talented young wrestler going by "The Rocket" had just returned to the WWF from a short run in the USWA. His brother would shortly win the first King Of The Ring on PPV. The King was Bret Hart. The Rocket was his younger brother Owen.
The problems began at Survivor Series, 1993. The Harts (Bret, Owen, Keith, and Bruce) took on Shawn Michaels and three of his Knights. During the match, Owen accidentally knocked Bret off the apron. Bret hit the railing, and Owen was eliminated. Owen began to seethe about how he had been eliminated due to his brother.
Shortly after, Bret and Owen appeared to work out their problems and even formed a tag team. At the Royal Rumble in 1994, they took on the Quebecers for the tag team titles. However, the referee ended the match because of an injury to Bret's knee, costing the brothers their shot at gold.
Owen went berserk. He attacked Bret's knee, blaming Bret for losing the match. He even blamed Bret for forcing him to wrestle as the Blue Blazer years earlier.
At Wrestlemania 10, Owen and Bret opened the PPV with an excellent match. In the end, Owen won. But this victory was overshadowed by the fact that, later in the night, Bret defeated Yokozuna and won his second WWF championship.
At the King of the Ring, Owen went on to defeat Adam Bomb (Brian Clarke), Tatanka, and the 123 Kid (X-Pac) for the victory. At his coronation, he proclaimed himself the "King Of Harts."
At Summerslam, Owen earned a match against Bret in a steel cage. Bret defeated Owen, with Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart and the British Bulldog in the crowd. Suddenly Neidhart grabbed Bret and threw him back inside the cage, where Owen joined him in attacking Bret. Bret was saved by the Bulldog.
At Survivor Series of 1994, Bret was scheduled to take on Bob Backlund in a submission match. This match could only be ended when Owen (for Backlund) or the British Bulldog (representing Bret) threw in a towel. The match went back and forth, until Owen whipped Bulldog into the stairs, knocking him out. Close to the same moment, Backlund locked Bret in his Crossface Chickenwing submission. Owen pulled Stu and Helen (his parents) out of the crowd. After an emotional 10 minute display (where Owen acted truly repentant), Helen finally threw the towel in against Stu's wishes. Owen immediately ran out to celebrate with Backlund, the new WWF champion.
When Neidhart left the WWF in early 1995, this signaled the end of the Hart family feud. The Harts would work together in 1997, as the Hart Foundation (Owen, Bret, Bulldog, Neidhart, and Brian Pillman). However, the feud between Owen and Bret was over.
This was an incredibly emotional feud which is still remembered fondly by many long-time wrestling fans. Bret and Owen, being brothers in real life, had the chemistry between them to pull it off. Also, bringing in Stu and Helen (who regularly appeared at PPV's where Bret wrestled) added the final exclamation point to the angle.
Christian and Edge also have the chemistry. They aren't real brothers, but have known each other since grade school. Each knows the other's weaknesses, and know how to make the other look good. Both have excellent mic skills, like Bret and Owen. But the question remains, can this feud equal the tension of the classic feud between the brothers? Only time will tell. But the foundation has already been laid.
I know that I was going to have the Into the Indies columns starting this week, but they've been delayed for a couple of weeks due to recent events. Don't worry. They're still coming. See you next week.