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The Best Thing Going Today: the Evolution of the IV Horsemen and Ric Flair
Thinking more and more of the wrestling I loved growing up, and re-reading my two articles up here on CamelClutchBlog.com about Chris Jericho (Chris Jericho-the Ultimate Heel of Today) and Legacy (Legacy is Priceless-What WWE Is Doing Right with Legacy), I thought of what other old-school wrestler or faction I wanted to do another article about, and what other great faction could I write about other than the IV Horsemen!
Everyone knows that the Horsemen wouldn’t have lasted long if it wasn’t for the “Nature Boy” being the head of the faction. Flair was the glue that helps the group together. Every group had the guy (or girl) who was the center of the group and was the censter of everything that they did.
The Original Horsemen
The original Horsemen were Ric Flair, Ole Anderson, Arn Anderson, Tully Blanchard, and their manager James J. Dillon (also known as JJ Dillon). The Andersons would go for the tag team championship, Blanchard would go for the United States title, Arn would go for the Television championship, and “the Nature Boy” would go for the NWA World Heavyweight Championship. Why these men clicked so much was because they were close friends outside of the ring as well as inside, and their personalities complemented each other’s so well that it was natural for them to team up.
Another reason why I believe that the group worked so well was because it was they weren’t a normal group thrown together like most groups back then. Most groups back then were put together just because a manager was managing them the whole time. This group wasn’t like that, this group were friends, as I said before, which is why they were so great. All five men were able to speak great in promos, so they held their own whenever they spoke. The original Horsemen I believe were the greatest Horsemen of all time.
The Horsemen Version 3.0
The second version of the Horsemen saw Ole out and Lex Lugar in. With Lugar in, I don’t see the Horsemen really being the best. But when Lugar went out and Barry Windham came in, this version of the Horsemen still gets me excited, twenty years later. When Lugar came in, Arn and Tully teamed up. After Lugar left and Windham came in, Tully and Arn still teamed up, and I believe there’s a good reasoning behind that. Arn and Tully clicked as a tag team and were a major threat to the tag team division and tag team titles.
With Windham in the Horsemen, I think he brought a change to the group that it needed. He was a heavy hitter for the United States Championship contention and could easily change hands for Flair or Tully and Arn with one kick to the face or a punch. To me, if a group would team up today, the closest person who would be like Windham would be John “Bradshaw” Layfield, if he still wrestled. I believe outside the original formation of the Horsemen, I do believe that this is the best version of the Horsemen behind those guys.
The Legacy of the Horsemen
In another twenty years when fans look back at the Four Horsemen, they could philosophize more on what did work for the Horsemen and what didn’t, and take notes, learn lessons, and figure out what works in the future. The Horsemen, in my opinion, is the greatest faction, ever, in the sport of professional wrestling.
This is Eric Darsie from Minnesota, learning to love the Horsemen more and more every day, goodbye!
Check out more of Eric’s blogs at http://jericholic2009.blogspot.com.
Order the WWE Ric Flair & The Four Horsemen DVD set by clicking here.
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