On 83 Weeks, Eric Bischoff often looks back at the successes and failures from his time with WCW and compares them to today’s product. In a clip uploaded to 83 Weeks’ YouTube Channel, Bischoff explained why the legendary New World Order storyline wouldn’t have worked today. He stated that the modern product doesn’t tell long-term stories the same way.
“When you don’t have a clear picture, when you don’t have a blueprint, when you don’t have a plan that you’ve really thought through, and you’ve kind of identified the beats, the moments, the high spots, whatever you want to call it, in an arc of a story, you time those high spots, those beats in such a way that they play out exactly when you want them and you find yourself not watching an angle, not necessarily recognizing the storyline but you’re looking at what’s unfolding as a journey,” said Bischoff. “And this was a journey. This was, it started off as a classic act one, going back to May 27. You’re taking someone in Scott Hall who makes his way down through a Nitro, unannounced, unadvertised, and this is something I’m going to probably beat the dog s— out of today.
“Today, and it drives me f—— crazy, actually, and I’m not gonna mention the organizations’ names, but when I see any wrestling organization, especially the bigger ones, advertising a week in advance something that’s going to happen, you’re diluting the power of live television. You’re giving up, you’re throwing away, you’re shoving down the garbage disposal, one of your biggest advantages when you do live TV. And that’s tickling that need for the audience to feel like, ‘Man, I gotta tune in because anything can happen and I don’t wanna miss it.’
“F—, that’s called appointment television. That’s why you’re live. And when whether it’s WWE or AEW, there I go I said I wasn’t gonna name them, but here we go, when I see them advertising something that really doesn’t have any story, there’s no buildup, there’s no journey involved, you’re just advertising a match. There’s not a story, the draw isn’t big enough on its own so what do we do? Oh let’s just promote it. Let’s make sure the audience knows what we’re gonna do. Well how about not? How about instead of that, how about creating a really good story that feels like it’s combusting spontaneously before your eyes in the moment? Now you’re capitalizing on live television, and I think that’s what we did with the NWO.”
Bischoff then explained that the NWO storyline was simplistic, but it was mapped out ahead of time, and these “beats” played out just as he had planned them. He stated that this process was a leading factor in the NWO’s success, and it’s not being replicated in wrestling today.
The full clip is available here: