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Scenes We'd Like To See: Alternate Movies, Television & Other Pop Culture Miscellanea

Elephant_trail

Active member
Gone Fishing
star trek 2
Spock is not killed but enterprise is heavly damged peter scottys nephew is not killed

Star Trek 3
The Klingon on way to Gensi planet meet the enterprise from mirror mirror
The star ship excelsior under command of captain sulu go into combat with mirror mirror enterprise.
 

RyanF

Abbot of Unreason
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Was going to post these later near to WrestleMania weekend, but might as well post them now...

Grab Bag of US Pro Wrestling PODs

  1. WrestleMania a Flop? - Acknowledged years later as the biggest gamble he ever took, what if the event Vince McMahon had invested a good deal of his own fortune in had failed? There were talent problems - Mr. T drew a lot of heat backstage and might have no showed, Roddy Piper was also reluctant to sign a contract until the week before. It was dependent upon a lot of cross-promotions - MTV had run a few prior shows setting up the event and was quickly asking McMahon for money for a continued relationship, Hogan and T hosting SNL did a lot to drive up walk-in ticket sales. Then there's the possibility of the satellite feed going down, localised issues were see in cities like Pittsburgh and could have been a lot more widespread. What it failed to get off the ground or worse the WWF was forced to issue massive refunds? McMahon has perhaps exaggerated since just how much of his own money was at stake but it's certainly possible he takes enough of a black eye to sell it back to his fathers original partners, keeping it contained within New York and abandoning plans for nationwide expansion.
  2. Successful 80s Alternative to WWF? - What if any of the attempts to challenge the dominance of the WWF during the 1980s had been successful to any degree? A proposed merger between Verne Gagne's AWA in Minnesota, Jerry Jarrett/Jerry Lawler's Memphis based CWA, and the Von Erich run WCCW out of Texas failed due to acrimony between the promoters. Bill Watts tried to take Mid South national as the Universal Wrestling Federation (because the Universe is bigger than the World, geddit!) after already missing out on a deal with TBS but still wasn't able to cut it and sold the promotion to Jim Crockett. Crockett might have come closest with JCP, but after the WWF aired free programming opposite two of their PPVs threatening providers if they aired the competition they would miss out on WrestleMania he was forced to sell the promotion to Turner. Was their too much acrimony for the old territories to unify and present an alternative without a corporate backer like Turner? Perhaps, but what if as @neonduke proposed earlier Mid South gets the TBS slot and later buys out WCCW, JCP and perhaps even CWA and AWA?
  3. Easy E Hired by WWF? - What if Eric Bischoff had succeeded in his application to the WWF to become an interviewer in 1990? Presumably he would not be in WCW in 1993 to ascend to the position of Executive Producer after Bill Watts left in controversial circumstances. WCW would be without the man that would tell Ted Turner he needed prime time television and Hulk Hogan to compete with the WWF. Likely the job goes to his superiors at that time, Tony Schiavone and Jim Ross, but Bischoff largely got the job by presenting himself as not a wrestling guy. Schiavone and Ross were avowedly wrestling guys, but how would WCW have fared under either or both of them? Might younger talent be pushed if they don't go on a spree of poaching all of WWFs biggest and sometimes over-the-hill stars? Could we end up with a different Monday Night War seeing McMahon and his right hand Bischoff going against a WCW run by Good Ol' JR?
  4. Vinny Mac Goes to Jail? - What if Vince McMahon had been found guilty of distributing steroids to his talent at trial in 1994? Supposedly it was a real enough possibility that control of the company was ceded to Linda, who can be seen smiling with McMahon in his comedy neckbrace at the trial. Allegedly Bill Watts would have taken over the wrestling side of things had it come to it, he was employed by McMahon in 1995 but left three months later claiming it was never intended to be long term - he must have done something in those three months since he was inducted to the WWE Hall of Fame in 2009? How would the WWF have fared during it's toughest time in history with Bill Watts at the helm? Does it continue to lose ground to WCW? Does Watts old fashioned ideas on the sport and outspoken views sour some talent towards the company? Will Vince have a company left to come back to after he is released?
  5. Michaels Does a Job? - What if Shawn Michaels had returned the favour Bret Hart did him at WMXII by putting over the Hitman in the main event of WM13? Instead Michaels vacated the title in what is largely thought to be a faked injury, as he was prone to do back in the 90s when the time called for him to put someone over. Hart and Michaels' relationship was not quite the ashes it would become a few short months later. What is significant about this is that Hart is no longer three to make Stone Cold Steve Austin as a main event star and perhaps inspire the whole attitude era in a single match. McMahon likely still could not afford to pay Bret the salary he agreed to in 1996, so Bret might still be looking to Atlanta by Summer. Now though we have a pissed off HBK missing his two best friends Kevin Nash and Scott Hall also down in WCW, as well as Stone Cold not quite the commodity he was following his match with the Hitman. Does this lead to no DX? No Montreal Screwjob? No Mr. McMahon? No Austin Era? No Attitude Era?
  6. WWF Does Not Buy WCW? - What if Vince McMahon had not purchased WCW in 2001? He got a steal when he bought WCW for $4.2M in 2001 ($2.5M for name and logo, $1.7M for tape library), so much so that Chris Jericho said later had he known it was going that cheap he would have bought it himself knowing the tape library to be worth at least that. McMahon was almost a buyer of last resort after AOL TimeWarner cancelled all WCW television programming, leading to cold feed on the part of Eric Bischoff's Fusient Media group of investors. What were Bischoff's plans? Base the programme out of one location (Orlando and Las Vegas were both mooted) to draw in tourists and rebuild the promotion starting from scratch with a May 2001 PPV - The Big Bang. It's the sort of model TNA was later able to find a foothold with at Unviersal Studios Orlando and weekly PPVs, but how much more successful might this model have been with a recognisable name and wrestling lineage behind it... and without Jeff Jarrett and later Dixie Carter?
  7. Trips Doesn't Trip? - What if Triple H had not torn his quadriceps on the 21st May 2001 edition of Raw is War? This may be one of the most significant injuries in the history of US professional wrestling. From his feud with Cactus Jack to that injury Triple H was arguably the best in the world, he was being set up for a long feud with Stone Cold Steve Austin supposedly to climax at WrestleMania in 2002. Things were changed immediately, we did get the second best Tables, Ladders and Chairs match on Smackdown the same week - which is where Chris Benoit would pick up his first neck injury. The planned double header at King of the Ring was changed from Austin/Benoit for the World title and Triple H/Jericho to an Austin/Benoit/Jericho triple threat, presumably the original was going to continue sowing the seeds for an Austin/Trip H blow up. If the beginnings of their feud was meant to carry programming through to SummerSlam was it possible the WCW Invasion would not have begun in earnest as quickly as it did? Allowing for some of the AOL contracts to run out on the biggest WCW stars? Presumably this alternate course of events would not see Stephanie McMahon portray the owner of ECW during the Invasion angle. When Triple H did return in 2002 he was not the same man, gone was part of the spark that had worked so well before and he was a lot more self-conscious and paranoid. This led us down the path to the Reign of Terror where he would dominate Raw for years burying any challenger to his domination of the main event scene like Kane, Rob Van Dam, Booker T, Goldberg, and many, many others. Would the audiences have still deserted in droves if the Invasion angle had been even a smidgen better and Triple H was still willing to make stars?
  8. Paul E. Dangerously Books TNA? - What if Dixie Carter had granted Paul Heyman full creative control over TNA in 2010? It's perhaps a sad indictment of TNA/Impact Wrestling that through all its existence under the Jarretts, the Carters, and Anthem Sports & Entertainment WWE had never tried to kill it - this being the company that tried to shut down Tommy Dreamer's nothing hardcore reunion show and moved to kill the British wrestling scene when ITV brought back World of Sport. Heyman has made no secret of what his plans would be for TNA, cut every performer over 40 except for one, steal Daniel Bryan from the WWE, build him as a submission master for an eventual showdown with Kurt Angle. TNA was ahead of the curve on a lot of things, their Knockouts decision was the predecessor in some ways to WWE's Women's Revolution, their X Division was an important step on the development of the current spot-heavy cocaine wrestling style, and they made stars of new talent like AJ Styles and Samoa Joe when WWE had struggled to build new stars for nearly a decade. Could they step up as an even better competitor to WWE under Heyman? Or would the lack of big money backing and continued presence of Dixie Carter keep them as a promotion no bigger than a superindy?
  9. No Rock/Cena Feud? - What if The Rock had not returned to the WWE in 2011 for a three year feud with John Cena? The Rock is the one wrestler who has gone on to major mainstream success in other ventures. There was no real need for him to return to WWE unless he wanted. Seemingly, he did. We got him hosting WrestleMania XXVII whose main event served as little more than to set up a feud between him and John Cena. We got him in the main event of WrestleMania XXVIII against Cena advertised as Once in a Lifetime. Twice in a Lifetime came again next year at WrestleMania 29 after The Rock ended CM Punk's year+ reign as WWE Champion. This programme created the situation where all major programmes seemed to involve part-timers, and without The Rock setting the precedent would we have seen the likes of Brock Lesnar, Batista, and Goldberg go into the main event scene on a part time basis? Without his reign ending the way it did would CM Punk have headlined WrestleMania and not walked out in 2014? Would WWE put more effort into making new stars instead of relying on former big names coming back for a few shows a year?
  10. No All Elite Wrestling? - What if Tony Khan had not been able to convince TBS executive of the viability of wrestling programming that led to the formation of AEW? All In may have been the proof of concept for AEW as a wrestling promotion but it was Tony Khan's contacts with executives at TBS that led to the possibility of a prime time wrestling programme on their channel. Without AEW would we have seen more cross-promotional events between the likes of NJPW, ROH, CMLL, Impact, AAA, MLW, and AAA? Would these have perhaps increased to multiple supercard shows each year with each promotion retaining control of their own booking except in cross-promotional matches?
 
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Time Enough

New Left Wing Political Queers-Micheal Moran
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In the wake of finishing the Return, I’ve just been thinking about a mid 90s Twin Peaks sequel film (there were some plans for one to be made after Fire Walk With Me but that film bombed so it was never made) and wondering what it would be like?

For starters, Jack Nance and Frank Silvia would probably appear (though given how Frank Silvia died from HIV related illness in 1995 he probably be heading towards that it seems) which makes me wonder how BOB and Pete would be used.

Oh also Kyle MacLachlan would probably be on board more than Fire Walk With Me, because he would be able to play both Cooper and DoppelDale which allows him to showcase a varied acting ability.

Also the mid 90s would be the period where Lynch was getting his Mulholland Drive style, so aesthetic wise it may be more similar to Lost Highway than Fire Walk With Me.

@Tom Colton & @Ares96 any other ideas or theories?
 

RyanF

Abbot of Unreason
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@Time Enough, I think there is at least one person who would prefer all of The Return condensed into a film that got released in the mid-90s. A lack of brevity has always been the enemy of Twin Peaks. It's interesting some different directions they might take it in with a lot of the cast still alive, would Don S. Davis have a major role as Major Briggs (geddit!) for instance.
 

Time Enough

New Left Wing Political Queers-Micheal Moran
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@Time Enough, I think there is at least one person who would prefer all of The Return condensed into a film that got released in the mid-90s. A lack of brevity has always been the enemy of Twin Peaks. It's interesting some different directions they might take it in with a lot of the cast still alive, would Don S. Davis have a major role as Major Briggs (geddit!) for instance.
True, I think that's probably why I find the original first season and Fire Walk With Me to be the best because they offer the whole Twin Peaks experience with very little time. Anyway, a mid 90s Twin Peaks sequel (let's say 1994) would be interesting.

By now the Twin Peaks pop culture impact would have been softened,X-Files is on TV now and so that would divert the attention a bit but still. Anyway it'd be interesting seeing who comes back and who doesn't. We would probably have Don S.Davis, Catherine Coulson, Sheryl Lee and Jack Nance making some form of appearance (and given how the Return had Don S. Davis have a major role it wouldn't surprise me). But also it wouldn't surprise me if folks like Lara Flynn Boyle don't bother coming back (maybe we get more of Moria Kelly as Donna?).

Also I wonder what the storyline would be, probably be set five years later from the original show as Cooper gets out of the lodge and fighting his Doppelganger who is now wreaking havoc in the real world. We would probably have Judy, The Woodsmen and BOB's birth still being a thing, but presented differently (for example the Woodsmen don't have the ashen faces like in The Return, in there appearance in Fire Walk With Me). Also this could lead to Jurgen Prochnow appearing as the main Woodsmen which is something.

Also I wonder if it would be two films shot at the same time, like Kill Bill and then cut in half by a producer. Hmm, a lot to think about.

--//--
Edit: It seems that Judy was originally meant to be Josie Packard's Twin Sister in FWWM, which umm would have been interesting.
 
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RyanF

Abbot of Unreason
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By now the Twin Peaks pop culture impact would have been softened,X-Files is on TV now and so that would divert the attention a bit but still. Anyway it'd be interesting seeing who comes back and who doesn't. We would probably have Don S.Davis, Catherine Coulson, Sheryl Lee and Jack Nance making some form of appearance (and given how the Return had Don S. Davis have a major role it wouldn't surprise me). But also it wouldn't surprise me if folks like Lara Flynn Boyle don't bother coming back (maybe we get more of Moria Kelly as Donna?).
The fact The X-Files is on the air may preclude David Duchovny from appearing in the film, but given its truncated nature as compared with The Return may be no space for Denise anyway.

Also I wonder if it would be two films shot at the same time, like Kill Bill and then cut in half by a producer. Hmm, a lot to think about.
More likely they butcher it and it subsequently bombs worse than Fire Walk With Me, maybe Lynch even goes Alan Smithee depending on how far they go. The director's cut DVD will fly off the shelves though when those become vogue... and the cycle begins again.
 

Time Enough

New Left Wing Political Queers-Micheal Moran
Pronouns
He/Him
The fact The X-Files is on the air may preclude David Duchovny from appearing in the film, but given its truncated nature as compared with The Return may be no space for Denise anyway.
Yeah it would be a shame for no Denise (though it wouldn't surprise me if they would just replace Denise with another actor, it wouldn't surprise me).
More likely they butcher it and it subsequently bombs worse than Fire Walk With Me, maybe Lynch even goes Alan Smithee depending on how far they go. The director's cut DVD will fly off the shelves though when those become vogue... and the cycle begins again.
Yeah, given how getting a Twin Peaks sequel would probably require a successful Fire Walk With Me, I'm imagining that it manages to make a small profit (not impossible). So the sequels come out, and bomb bad (probably a similar editing/producer job to Fire Walk With Me occurs). So Lynch is probably out of the filmmaking game for a bit (a good reminder that the gap between FWWM and when Lost Highway begins filming is about three years). Also in terms of a Directors cut, given how David Lynch often makes four hour long films before cutting, it wouldn't surprise me if the Director Cut was about that much.

Be interested in if the Thought Gang group manages to stay around a bit longer for the Twin Peaks Sequels.
 

Ysengrimus

Active member
I had a thought a while back about a vignette where Richard Williams gets different funding and finally completes The Thief and the Cobbler in about 1999 with it ending up being viewed as a critical success, a cult classic and a sort of last hurrah for traditional animation even at the time of release.
I love that idea! I wonder how that would leak down through popular culture, in particular. Would it influence our sayings, say in the way that Star Wars or Star Trek did--but as the equivalent of apotheosis for traditional animation?
 

Ysengrimus

Active member
Ok, long shot but bear with me here.
Disney originally wanted to make ROMAN DE REYNARD into an animated movie. Yes, the medieval epic starring cute animals and more rape, blackmail, murder, mutiliation and sex jokes (not to mention miscarriages of justice) than you can shake a stick at.
(Think if Zootopia was mixed with Titus Andronicus and set in a feudal French culture).
Proof here
and here
Anyway, Disney realized just in time (from it's point of view) that there was no way they could release this--but had already done a lot of the character designs.
This is why Disney's Robin Hood is a fox, King John is a lion, etc. They had the sketches, but couldn't use them in the original context.
What if Disney had actually made--and released--a version of the Roman de Reynard?
(Or, if I'm dreaming, the far dirtier and more scattered Latin poem, YSENGRIMUS, which involves Reynard the Fox tricking Ysengrimus the Wolf into freezing his balls and tail to a lake during a whacky ice-fishing 'accident').
 

Alex Richards

She needs an artificial Mountain, not AV
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I love that idea! I wonder how that would leak down through popular culture, in particular. Would it influence our sayings, say in the way that Star Wars or Star Trek did--but as the equivalent of apotheosis for traditional animation?
I don't necessarily think it would influence sayings so much- the two main characters are both mute for the whole film after all.

It may be enough that referring to 'Princess Yum-Yum' needs explaining whether you mean Thief or The Mikado. And I have a feeling Zigzag's lines would be memed to death by now.

Beyond that, it's more of a cultural swanswong if that makes sense. You'll see a lot of people who were bemoaning the death of animation anyway viewing it as the last glory, and a lot of people for whom it demonstrates how commercial success needs CGI.

Though I wouldn't be surprised if hand-animated 'arthouse' films become something that come out every few years, win a few awards and then sink without a trace.
 

RyanF

Abbot of Unreason
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What are some of your favourite films that were never made?

For me the one that always comes to mind is Steven Spielberg's Night Skies. Was intended as his follow up to Close Encounters of the Third Kind but eventually he took a step back and would only produce. John Sayles, fresh of Piranha, was brought in to script with Tobe Hooper being touted as director. Rick Baker designed the alien villains of the piece at the same time he was working on An American Werewolf in London. Whilst filming Raiders of the Lost Ark Spielberg began to think it was too dark and he read it to screenwriter Melissa Mathison, who latched on to one particular aspect of the screenplay and soon Spielberg abandoned it to begin developing what became E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial with Mathison.

The reason I like this so much is some of the names already associated with it at the development stage but also how much elements of the planned film would go on to inform a lot of films I loved in the following years including Poltergeist (the terrorised family and Tobe Hooper directing*), Gremlins (with the one good member of a group of malicious creatures), and Critters, which may be the closest approximation of Night Skies we got.
 

Yokai Man

Well-known member
What are some of your favourite films that were never made?

For me the one that always comes to mind is Steven Spielberg 's Night Skies. Was intended as his follow up to Close Encounters of the Third Kind but eventually he took a step back and would only produce. John Sayles, fresh of Piranha, was brought in to script with Tobe Hooper being touted as director. Rick Baker designed the alien villains of the piece at the same time he was working on An American Werewolf in London. Whilst filming Raiders of the Lost Ark Spielberg began to think it was too dark and he read it to screenwriter Melissa Mathison, who latched on to one particular aspect of the screenplay and soon Spielberg abandoned it to begin developing what became E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial with Mathison.

The reason I like this so much is some of the names already associated with it at the development stage but also how much elements of the planned film would go on to inform a lot of films I loved in the following years including Poltergeist (the terrorised family and Tobe Hooper directing*), Gremlins (with the one good member of a group of malicious creatures), and Critters, which may be the closest approximation of Night Skies we got.
Speaking of Spielberg,it would have been interesting to see him accomplish making the live action adaption The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn that he wanted to make in the Eighties,with Jack Nicholson apparently being considered for Captain Haddock.

Personally,one of my favorite never made movies is Uru in Blue,the sequel to The Wings of Honneamise that is in production hell since I was born.
 

RyanF

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What are some of your favourite films that were never made?

For me the one that always comes to mind is Steven Spielberg's Night Skies. Was intended as his follow up to Close Encounters of the Third Kind but eventually he took a step back and would only produce. John Sayles, fresh of Piranha, was brought in to script with Tobe Hooper being touted as director. Rick Baker designed the alien villains of the piece at the same time he was working on An American Werewolf in London. Whilst filming Raiders of the Lost Ark Spielberg began to think it was too dark and he read it to screenwriter Melissa Mathison, who latched on to one particular aspect of the screenplay and soon Spielberg abandoned it to begin developing what became E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial with Mathison.

The reason I like this so much is some of the names already associated with it at the development stage but also how much elements of the planned film would go on to inform a lot of films I loved in the following years including Poltergeist (the terrorised family and Tobe Hooper directing*), Gremlins (with the one good member of a group of malicious creatures), and Critters, which may be the closest approximation of Night Skies we got.
Since between them @zaffre and @napoleon IV have managed to tie Night Skies into the failure at the time of Blade Runner and The Thing is there any way that Night Skies being made instead of E.T. leads to either film being better received upon its initial release? I'm not sure it would, since although we lose the biggest genre film of the summer in E.T. as well as Poltergeist its still a pretty crowded release schedule. Some critics might be kinder to either film without E.T., but Blade Runner's post-production woes and The Thing's gruesome effects might still give them plenty to bring the knives out.
 
Was going to post these later near to WrestleMania weekend, but might as well post them now...

Grab Bag of US Pro Wrestling PODs

  1. WrestleMania a Flop? - Acknowledged years later as the biggest gamble he ever took, what if the event Vince McMahon had invested a good deal of his own fortune in had failed? There were talent problems - Mr. T drew a lot of heat backstage and might have no showed, Roddy Piper was also reluctant to sign a contract until the week before. It was dependent upon a lot of cross-promotions - MTV had run a few prior shows setting up the event and was quickly asking McMahon for money for a continued relationship, Hogan and T hosting SNL did a lot to drive up walk-in ticket sales. Then there's the possibility of the satellite feed going down, localised issues were see in cities like Pittsburgh and could have been a lot more widespread. What it failed to get off the ground or worse the WWF was forced to issue massive refunds? McMahon has perhaps exaggerated since just how much of his own money was at stake but it's certainly possible he takes enough of a black eye to sell it back to his fathers original partners, keeping it contained within New York and abandoning plans for nationwide expansion.
  2. Successful 80s Alternative to WWF? - What if any of the attempts to challenge the dominance of the WWF during the 1980s had been successful to any degree? A proposed merger between Verne Gagne's AWA in Minnesota, Jerry Jarrett/Jerry Lawler's Memphis based CWA, and the Von Erich run WCCW out of Texas failed due to acrimony between the promoters. Bill Watts tried to take Mid South national as the Universal Wrestling Federation (because the Universe is bigger than the World, geddit!) after already missing out on a deal with TBS but still wasn't able to cut it and sold the promotion to Jim Crockett. Crockett might have come closest with JCP, but after the WWF aired free programming opposite two of their PPVs threatening providers if they aired the competition they would miss out on WrestleMania he was forced to sell the promotion to Turner. Was their too much acrimony for the old territories to unify and present an alternative without a corporate backer like Turner? Perhaps, but what if as @neonduke proposed earlier Mid South gets the TBS slot and later buys out WCCW, JCP and perhaps even CWA and AWA?
The most interesting prospect to me is that either Verne doesn't make his ludicrous demands of Hogan and makes him the champ. Vince notoriously loathes the idea of anyone getting over outside WWE (why else does Sting get booked to lose his first ever Wrestlemania appearance?) and WWE takes loads of credit for making Hulkamania a thing, but Hogan was already doing it in Minnesota. He was getting huge pops for the AWA and he was actually pioneering modern wrestling merchandising by printing up T-shirts and selling them out of the boot of his car after matches. WWF was getting a ready-made star when they got him.

Let's suppose Hogan stays with the AWA in the 1980s and doesn't skip town with their title belt and show up with it on Vince's television show (which is one of the things Verne was afraid would happen if he put the belt on Hogan), and eventually hands over to Curt Hennig in 1987 or 1988. Where does that leave Vince? He still wants to go national but he needs a star to build his big push behind, someone who can be the invincible all-American superhero and inspiration to children. Who does he get? Well, there are two serious options, both of whom we know from other testimony Vince would have gone with if he couldn't get the Hulkster. One of them is someone who was already a big name and one who could only get bigger. Better yet, he was already a WWF stalwart.

"Superfly" Jimmy Snuka.

You can see the potential problem, I'm sure. If he still ends up implicated in the death of Nancy Argentino, that's a huge PR disaster for Vince, especially if he tries to cover it up as many have alleged happened in real life. Snuka's drug habit makes him unreliable anyway. So maybe Vince turns to his other choice.

Kerry Von Erich.

Now, I think Kerry is a better call than Snuka for this job. He's a handsome guy, proven hit with kids and women, respected athlete, good in the ring, massively over already in the south, which would be useful if Vince has to compete with the NWA. He's from a hugely respected wrestling family whose name is virtually synonymous with the sport in their part of the country. He's also got that wholesome, family-friendly, all-American Christian boy image. Seems like the total package. Unfortunately, Kerry is, if anything, an even bigger pill head than Snuka was. His own dad started him on steroids when he was 15 years old. He could deliver in the ring but it could be a challenge getting him to show up; all of the Von Erich boys were pretty fickle about appearing for spot shows they'd been booked for if they were high or didn't feel like it. Even when he did appear, he could be erratic. One of his matches with Flair had been planned out and then he admitted that he'd forgotten it just before they went out because he was so stoned and Flair had to improvise it for both of them. Then there's the way his family covered up for his brushes with the law; he was once caught trying to smuggle drugs over from Mexico and his dad and his brothers all claimed that they were planted by the Fabulous Freebirds! If he's the top guy at the WWF, with so much more money and so many more temptations, who knows what happens?

It makes for interesting speculation. The only other option I can see is André the Giant and there's no way André is going to be able to work a Hogan schedule in the 1980s.
 

RyanF

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The most interesting prospect to me is that either Verne doesn't make his ludicrous demands of Hogan and makes him the champ. Vince notoriously loathes the idea of anyone getting over outside WWE (why else does Sting get booked to lose his first ever Wrestlemania appearance?) and WWE takes loads of credit for making Hulkamania a thing, but Hogan was already doing it in Minnesota. He was getting huge pops for the AWA and he was actually pioneering modern wrestling merchandising by printing up T-shirts and selling them out of the boot of his car after matches. WWF was getting a ready-made star when they got him.

Let's suppose Hogan stays with the AWA in the 1980s and doesn't skip town with their title belt and show up with it on Vince's television show (which is one of the things Verne was afraid would happen if he put the belt on Hogan), and eventually hands over to Curt Hennig in 1987 or 1988. Where does that leave Vince? He still wants to go national but he needs a star to build his big push behind, someone who can be the invincible all-American superhero and inspiration to children. Who does he get? Well, there are two serious options, both of whom we know from other testimony Vince would have gone with if he couldn't get the Hulkster. One of them is someone who was already a big name and one who could only get bigger. Better yet, he was already a WWF stalwart.

"Superfly" Jimmy Snuka.

You can see the potential problem, I'm sure. If he still ends up implicated in the death of Nancy Argentino, that's a huge PR disaster for Vince, especially if he tries to cover it up as many have alleged happened in real life. Snuka's drug habit makes him unreliable anyway. So maybe Vince turns to his other choice.

Kerry Von Erich.

Now, I think Kerry is a better call than Snuka for this job. He's a handsome guy, proven hit with kids and women, respected athlete, good in the ring, massively over already in the south, which would be useful if Vince has to compete with the NWA. He's from a hugely respected wrestling family whose name is virtually synonymous with the sport in their part of the country. He's also got that wholesome, family-friendly, all-American Christian boy image. Seems like the total package. Unfortunately, Kerry is, if anything, an even bigger pill head than Snuka was. His own dad started him on steroids when he was 15 years old. He could deliver in the ring but it could be a challenge getting him to show up; all of the Von Erich boys were pretty fickle about appearing for spot shows they'd been booked for if they were high or didn't feel like it. Even when he did appear, he could be erratic. One of his matches with Flair had been planned out and then he admitted that he'd forgotten it just before they went out because he was so stoned and Flair had to improvise it for both of them. Then there's the way his family covered up for his brushes with the law; he was once caught trying to smuggle drugs over from Mexico and his dad and his brothers all claimed that they were planted by the Fabulous Freebirds! If he's the top guy at the WWF, with so much more money and so many more temptations, who knows what happens?

It makes for interesting speculation. The only other option I can see is André the Giant and there's no way André is going to be able to work a Hogan schedule in the 1980s.
Interesting ideas, I'll agree Kerry is the better call than Snuka but how does Junior pry him away from Daddy Fritz down South? When it come to Hogan and the AWA Vince just poached him and whatever talent he wanted, but I can't see Kerry departing WCCW in the same manner. Similarly I can't see Fritz agreeing to sell up for a cushy package. New York could actually get a lot of great talent if he had plundered Dallas as much as he did Minneapolis OTL, but the Von Erich boys might be forever beyond Vince's reach so long as Fritz wanted to remain independent. It's interesting to imagine though some of the scandals that would rock WCCW happening to WWF at the time of their national expansion and promotion of prayers and vitamins. In some ways Hogan was the only option.

The idea of Hogan staying in AWA is worthy of speculation itself, if Gagne's promotion is able to stay afloat it might do better at holding on to a lot of the talent that would go WWF throughout the 1980s including Wendi Richter and Jesse Ventura then later the future Razor Roman, Midnight Rockers, Vader and Alundra Blayze.
 
Interesting ideas, I'll agree Kerry is the better call than Snuka but how does Junior pry him away from Daddy Fritz down South? When it come to Hogan and the AWA Vince just poached him and whatever talent he wanted, but I can't see Kerry departing WCCW in the same manner. Similarly I can't see Fritz agreeing to sell up for a cushy package. New York could actually get a lot of great talent if he had plundered Dallas as much as he did Minneapolis OTL, but the Von Erich boys might be forever beyond Vince's reach so long as Fritz wanted to remain independent. It's interesting to imagine though some of the scandals that would rock WCCW happening to WWF at the time of their national expansion and promotion of prayers and vitamins. In some ways Hogan was the only option.
WCCW was one of the only territories that Vince made some token efforts to butter up and didn't pretend didn't exist in the early 1980s; there are old WWF magazines from that period which had features on the Von Erichs, as though it was being done just in case they needed the fans to be aware of them (of course, WCCW already had a national television deal and a top-rated programme so they were hardly unknown outside Texas; strangely enough it was with the Christian Broadcasting Network of all channels; story is that Fritz's Christianity was at least a bit of a swindle to keep Pat Robertson happy and his wife was the genuinely devout one). When David Von Erich died, WWF joined in the tributes, which they almost never did. It was only after they had Hogan and started getting aggressive that they rolled into Dallas and started promoting shows in opposition to WCCW (actually, I believe the guy who booked either just the first or the first two WrestleManias had previously worked for Fritz).

I think Fritz would have let Vince have Kerry if David had survived, no doubt conditional on Fritz getting some ridiculous booking fee. If Vince cannot get Hogan at all and can't detoxify Snuka (in every sense of the word), I think he goes for it. Kerry was over for a while when he was the Texas Tornado in the WWF.

Still, it's interesting to speculate: if not Hogan, then who? Savage or Steamboat might be possibilities. Bret Hart is still too young.

The idea of Hogan staying in AWA is worthy of speculation itself, if Gagne's promotion is able to stay afloat it might do better at holding on to a lot of the talent that would go WWF throughout the 1980s including Wendi Richter and Jesse Ventura then later the future Razor Roman, Midnight Rockers, Vader and Alundra Blayze.
Can easily imagine AWA lasting into the 2000s basically having Lesnar as champion for like a decade, because the AWA schedule - the way they did their shows on a seasonal basis - was basically the schedule Lesnar works for WWE in 2019/2020.
 

RyanF

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Still, it's interesting to speculate: if not Hogan, then who? Savage or Steamboat might be possibilities. Bret Hart is still too young.
There's a TL back in the Old Country that looks at Steamboat getting the nod when Hogan is injured - The Rise of the Dragon by @The Walkman.

It's really possible though that Hogan was really a perfect storm, someone who was already over with crowds and had some crossover appeal (his appearance in Rocky III) and ticked practically every box for what the WWF and McMahon personally would look for in a top guy. Snuka has a ton of baggage, Kerry is comfortable where he is, Randy can be volatile, and Ricky doesn't fit that McMahon mould.

We're just looking at McMahon betting on the right horse of course, what if he tried to take the Fed national based around David Sammartino? Provided he can keep he and Bruno in good humour.

Can easily imagine AWA lasting into the 2000s basically having Lesnar as champion for like a decade, because the AWA schedule - the way they did their shows on a seasonal basis - was basically the schedule Lesnar works for WWE in 2019/2020.
An interesting idea, it's always fun to speculate at how things might have gone if AWA or any of the Southern promotions were able to retain their independence until the 21st Century.
 
An interesting idea, it's always fun to speculate at how things might have gone if AWA or any of the Southern promotions were able to retain their independence until the 21st Century.
It's a confluence of events that did them all in. The national expansion of the WWF was one thing but one that I think is really underrated (which occurred to me a while ago when I was writing my eventually-forthcoming pro wrestling Top 10 list) is that Jim Crockett (who was doing just as much national expansion as Vince) used the NWA title to go into business for himself. He stopped booking Flair in other territories and basically turned the belt into the top WCW title.

Mutual recognition of the legitimacy of the NWA belt was what held the territories together; emerging factors in the 1980s wrestling scene weakened it (those brief runs for guys like Tommy Rich and Kerry Von Erich for the sake of doing one big number just made them look weak and kind of exposed how much of a prop the belt was; likewise, Flair constantly losing it to guys like that in the early 80s ran the risk of undermining him as a credible champion) but that was the decisive blow.

As soon as the champion stops travelling, the territories can either die on the vine or try to go national themselves and most of them just didn't have the resources. Bill Watts made a go of it but he was done in by the collapse of the oil industry: no money for the oil workers means no paying fans at his shows in Oklahoma and Louisiana.
 
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