The 10 best Superstars from the Attitude Era
The WWF's Attitude Era is recognised as being the most important time period for the wrestling business as a whole. In what would become an all-out assault on the company's Southern rivals, WCW, Vince McMahon changed the course of his television product with the inclusion of car crash TV, x-rated content and boundary-pushing violence.
While some fans might argue that other WWF/E periods were better in terms of entertainment value, there's little denying that from a business standpoint the Attitude Era was truly without compare. The Monday Night Wars brought professional wrestling to a level nobody could have predicted and both WWF and WCW owe it to their highly talented cohort of stars for making them the two companies to headline it all.
When it comes to ranking the 10 best WWF Superstars from the Attitude Era, everyone will undoubtedly have their own opinions. Nevertheless, here are, in this author's view, the 10 best Superstars from WWF's greatest ever era:
Despite many of the principles of today's women's revolution being all but absent during the Attitude Era, WWF's female stars were still equally important back then in allowing the company to showcase a new attitude mixed with controversy and testosterone-fuelled chaos which was a key demand of their target audience at the time.
Rather than battling it out with the male competitors for the main event spot, WWF's women were there to provide a different kind of entertainment for the young males in attendance in particular. And while many Superstars would end up fulling this role over the years, the woman who arguably started off this trend was Sable.
Originally brought in as Marc Mero's manager/valet, the crowd slowly began warming to Sable more so than the man she was supposed to be getting heat for. Ever the eagle-eyed booker, Vince McMahon soon caught onto this and decided to place the onscreen couple in a feud. The general narrative was that Mero became more and more jealous of Sable's attention each week and prevented her from showcasing her ''skills'' to the audience.
Over a period of a few months, Sable gradually gained the confidence to stand up for herself and embrace what people loved her for. In a highly memorable scene on an episode of RAW, Sable would come to ringside in a gown and — much to the chagrin of Mero — drop it to the floor, revealing nothing but black handprints painted over her particulars.
Sable may not have put on any 5-star matches or wowed the fans with particularly great mic skills, but in many ways, the whole spirit of the Attitude Era itself can be seen as encapsulated in Sable's early career. Just as Mero was playing the role of party pooper, struggling to keep things child-friendly and sophisticated, Sable was performing the role of Vince McMahon, uncovering his company to a more risque form of entertainment and winning back control of the TV ratings from WCW in the process.