That Time DX Were So Hated WWF Fans RIOTED House Show

D Generation X Shawn Michaels European Title
WWE Network

By December 1997, Shawn Michaels' recklessness was effectively being rewarded by Vince McMahon.

By any and all accounts outside of his own inner circle, the WWE Champion for much of the prior two years had been a f*cking unimaginable horror to deal with. His mammoth ego, rampant insecurity as the feature act of a failing company and a pills and alcohol problem all combined to make a cocktail as lethal as the ones he'd been downing to a dangerous degree as he rose through company ranks.

If 1996 was the year he cemented himself as a worker of Ric Flair's pedigree, 1997 was the one in which he exhibited the self-destructive tendencies 'The Nature Boy' had in later life. The emotional turnaround was terrifyingly quick but oddly anticipated - Michaels' fragility in the top spot was apparent before he even made it there when a real-life sh*tkicking he took outside a Syracuse nightclub in 1995 had to be spun as a thuggish assault on a hero rather than the provocative skirmish it actually was.

It was the type of grief opposing company figurehead Bret Hart never entertained, and just one of the numerous things that placed them poles apart personally and professionally. 'The Hitman' was flawed, but never in a manner that had the potential to pierce the veil of the industry he was born into. Bret would sooner fake a fight with his most hated rival than start one with the fanbases he antagonised as a heel. But Bret wasn't there by the time the out-of-control 'Showstopper' stopped the show.

CONT'D...

Contributor
Contributor

Square eyes on a square head, trained almost exclusively to Pro Wrestling, Sunderland AFC & Paul Rudd films. Responsible for 'Shocking Plans You Won't Believe Actually Happened', some of the words in our amazing Wrestling bookazines (both available at shop.whatculture.com), and probably every website list you read that praised Kevin Nash.

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