Building Intellectual Property
What group in the last 15 years, outside WWE, has garnered as much attention as the Bullet Club on a Global Scale? They have performed for audiences in so many promotions. Their unique bad guy / good guy reputation has made them the newest version of the NWO and they have been able to establish themselves as main event attractions wherever they go. They are mainstays in Ring of Honor. The Japanese audience has fallen in love with them in New Japan. Even appearances for smaller independent companies such as Pro Wrestling Guerrilla and CMLL have brought in die hard fans. The retail world is often the measure of you influence on popular culture but Bullet Club has even tackled this world as they offer some of the most popular merchandise sold by retailer Hot Topic and have even been given their own Funko Figures. You know you have arrived when you have your own Funko.
Have we seen this before?
Large factions in wrestling are somewhat of a common occurrence. There was the Main Event Mafia in TNA. Los Ingoberbables de Japon and Choas have been the focal point of New Japan television. Even the short lived Fourtune faction in Impact Wrestling seemed like it had some amazing talent. So what has Bullet Club done that no one else has?
The competition at the top!
When you compare wrestling factions, it goes without saying that every dominant group gets compared to the best of yesteryear. How does Bullet Club stack up against the Four Horseman? How about Evolution? DX? Heck, do they stand a chance next to the League of Nations? That may be why this group is so special. When people compare them, you don’t hear them compare Bullet Club to the League of Nations or Nexus. You hear them compared to the best that has ever been. They get compared to the Horseman, DX, and the NWO often. The reason? Fans really do think they are just that influential and that important.
What makes Bullet Club Different?
What makes their faction unique when compared to the rest of the wrestling world is their unique presentation. They have just the right attitude backed by organic reality based stories. The Young Bucks really are independently wealthy from their time in the business. Cody really is a talent that WWE barely scratched the surface of as far as creative was concerned. Kenny Omega may be the most entertaining and talented worker of the entire group. His matches have become clinics for aspiring wrestlers to review to learn from. They can boast having the clout to make their own schedule. If they choose to take time off, they brag about the flexibility in their schedule because everyone is willing to pay them so much. They have collected an impressive array of championships from around the globe. There are just so many layers to Bullet Club that we would need a week just to list all of them.
Unique Leadership Structure
Bullet Club has also profited from timely leadership transitions that have kept the group fresh and newsworthy. The original group included current WWE superstar Finn Balor, then known as Prince Devitt, as its founding leader. Since then, AJ Styles, Kenny Omega, Cody to some degree, and now Tama Tonga have claimed to have a unique spin on Bullet Club’s leadership. Perfectly planned sneak attacks on former leaders have been orchestrated time and again. This has made it so that fans are always waiting to see if someone new debuts with the group.
Memberships Available to Qualified Applicants
One of the other potentially challenging but surprisingly successful aspects of Bullet Club’s reputation lies with their members. Those who have been a part of the group read like a who’s who of New Japan Pro Wrestling’s best and brightest. Prince Devitt, Bad Luck Fale, AJ Styles, Tama Tonga, Tonga Loa, Luke Gallows, Karl Anderson, the Young Bucks, Jeff Jarrett, Kenn Omega, Cody Hall, Chase Owens, King Haku, Adam Cole, Hangman Page, Bone Soldier, Cody, and Marty Skurll have all donned Bullet Club gear. Most importantly, they could add members at any time and unlike the ever expanding NWO of the 1990s that got too big and boring, Bullet Club finds a way to make each member mean something to the group.
Rumors of a WWE Debut
Over the past year, rumors have run rampant that WWE would be interested in signing any or all members of the group when their current deals expire. It has become public knowledge that the contracts of Hangman Page, Cody, the Young Bucks, and Kenny Omega are expiring at year’s end. Vince McMahon and Triple H must be salivating at the thought of potentially signing the nucleus of the group. The WWE is in dire need of new Main Event Level Talents who can come in and make an immediate impact. On the flip side, they could bring them to NXT and have the 4 of them feud with the Undisputed Era which would be a must see dream scenario. Fans are in a holding pattern just waiting to see a press release about WWE bringing in Bullet Club.
The All In Effect
One of the more controversial aspects of the potential signing with WWE would be what to do about All In 2. All In was such a huge success and delivered in so many ways that Cody and the Young Bucks have expressed an interest in being a part of that process once again. The success of the first show had to have drawn Vince McMahon’s attention and gave him more incentive to want to sign every member. If there was this much excitement generated from a one-off show, what kind of potential super show could WWE pull of with their marketing behind Bullet Club?
Would it even work?
Let’s be honest. WWE signing Bullet Club would open the doors to a pantheon of opportunities for amazing fresh matches. The possibilities are endless. Never before seen pairings and the match quality that each member would bring to a WWE ring are unparalleled. The dream matches that WWE could book are endless. Kenny Omega vs Seth Rollins, AJ Styles, Daniel Bryan, Samoa Joe, Roman Reigns, Dean Ambrose, Drew McIntyre, etc. Cody vs well, just about anyone who he hasn’t already wrestled. The Young Bucks vs the Revival, the New Day, the Bar, the Usos, the Bludgeon Brothers, even against McIntyre and Ziggler would be entertaining.
Who are we kidding?
WWE is what WWE always has been. They are the biggest but not necessarily the best at pushing stars who made a name for themselves outside WWE. If they bring in Bullet Club, you could easily see Vince putting the Young Bucks on 205 Live. Kenny Omega could get paired with Dolph Ziggler when he splits from Drew McIntyre. Cody could get put back in the Cosmic Wasteland for all we know. WWE doesn’t always do what truly is “Best For Business.”
How to Book a Bullet Club Faction in WWE
I believe that the key to a successful Bullet Club run in WWE would have to maintain many of the characteristics that have made Bullet Club a success in New Japan and Ring of Honor. They would have to come in with the understanding that they do not represent any one brand. Raw, Smackdown, NXT, and even NXT UK would all have to be in the cards at any given time for Bullet Club. They would have to run roughshod over many of the established superstars to showcase their dominance. Most important though is the membership. If WWE were to bring in the Young Bucks, Cody, Hangman Page, and Kenny Omega, they could not be the only members. Oh sure. Have those 5 appear when they first debut. Put together an insane match with Bullet Club versus a group of WWE stars from Raw, Smackdown, and NXT who are defending the honor of WWE. Visualize the match. Cody, Kenny Nick, Matt, and Hangman take on AJ Styles, Daniel Bryan, Reigns, Rollins, and Tomasso Ciampa. During the match, you could have Ciampa walk out on the team leaving them short handed and have AJ Styles turn on WWE rejoining Bullet Club. Send in Braun Strowman and Samoa Joe to stop a Bullet Club Beat Down only to get jumped by Gallows, Anderson, and Finn Balor who also join the group. That is how you bring them in.
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