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History of WWF/ WWE

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History Of WWF/WWE

The Attitude Era
The WWF, with new booker Vince Russo went to a more edgy and adult content to counteract the WCW. As part of the Time Warner family, WCW had to keep their programming family oriented after several bad publicity events for the company promoting things like the Ice-T song Cop Killer. There were several things Vince used to get this edge. He introduced the concept of the wrestling Diva, had a new stable called Degeneration-X that acted in a very crude manner, and most importantly allowed a former WCW star named Steve Austin to shine. Steve changed the line between a good guy and a bad guy. He acted like a bad guy, but people appreciated his blue collar resolve and when he feuded with Vince McMahon, it became the biggest angle in wrestling history. The tide of the Monday Night War changed when Mike Tyson appeared on Raw in his first appearance since biting Evander Holyfield’s ear. People tuned in to see Mike, and were shocked by what they were watching. This was not the same wrestling people were used to and they were hooked. The WWF didn’t rest on their laurels with Austin though, they also developed The Rock into a household name and allowed their young stars an opportunity to shine. In WCW, the old stars had guaranteed contracts and creative control of their characters which led to the stifiling of new talent with the exception of Goldberg. In a major turn, wrestlers were leaving WCW and joining the WWF. To stop their slide, WCW decided to spend heavily on famous people that just didn’t bring any ratings. After the WWF got a new show on UPN called SmackDown!, Vince Russo left to become the new booker of WCW. The magic he had with the WWF failed to follow him to the WCW and the company wound up losing almost $100 million in 2000. The money losses combined with Ted Turner losing control of the company in the AOL-Time Warner merger led to the sale of WCW to Vince McMahon in 2001. Vince McMahon’s dream of controlling the wrestling world had come true. In the process, he became a billionaire when the WWF became a publicly traded company

 

The Brand Split & New Name
At the time of his purchase, Vince was involved with the XFL and wasn’t as involved with the wrestling. The Invasion angle of WCW stars was a creative failure and after that angle the big stars of WCW started to appear but most were doomed to failure. As a way to get the feeling of the Monday Night War back, Vince split the company into 2 brands, Raw & SmackDown! In an embarrassing moment for the company, they lost the rights to the WWF name to the World Wildlife Fund and were renamed World Wrestling Entertainment. Despite these failures, the WWE continues to make new stars and his hopeful that one of them can become the next Hulk Hogan to start another great cycle for the company.

Credit to prowrestling.about.com