Originally Posted by the modern myth
Yeah, Bret definitely got shafted by the WWF. By giving him the title in such a low key way, it implied that they were almost ashamed of him being champion. They never booked the Flair/Hart PPV rematch (which they could've done at Royal Rumble 1993 instead of rushing Razor Ramon into the title match). Getting that big PPV win would have been really good for Bret's reign. As good as his match with HBK was Survivor Series 1992, Shawn wasn't really a world title contender at the time and it didn't really elevate Bret the way that a match with somebody like Ultimate Warrior, Ric Flair or Randy Savage would have done.
I agree that they fucked him over when it came to losing the title as well. Giving the title to Hulk Hogan was such a slap in the face to Bret. Taking him out of the title scene to feud with Jerry Lawler was also a bit disrespectful. The only upshot was that it all built to the Bret/Owen feud, which was the best feud of the era in my opinion.
The reason why they didn't do Hart/Flair at Survivor Series or at The Royal Rumble was because Ric Flair told WWE almost as soon as he had won the WWE title from Randy Savage that he wanted to go back to WCW so Vince McMahon wanted to use his star power to put other people over as he did with Bret Hart and Curt Hennig. One thing thing about Ric Flair was he didn't mind putting other people over as long as he was allowed to have a long match because he wanted to look great in defeat as he often did against Sting, Ricky Steamboat, Randy Savage, Dusty Rhodes and Curt Hennig to name a few.
I also remember Bret Hart saying a few times that Vince McMahon was going to book Hart/Warrior at The Royal Rumble with Bret Hart winning due to a double run in which would set up The Ultimate Warrior's feud for WrestleMania 9 but also give Bret Hart a big win over someone with serious star power. Obviously The Ultimate Warrior left WWE just before Survivor Series so that was a non starter and by then they had booked Hennig/Flair which meant Razor Ramon being thrown into a rushed feud wuth Bret Hart but was actully quite good and produced a good match.
In the space of a few months WWE lost so much star power in Hulk Hogan, The Ultimate Warrior, Ric Flair, Randy Savage as an in ring performer and Curt Hennig after SummerSlam and that is a major reason of why WWE struggled so much that year. Something you may find interesting though is that it is said that a lot of feuds in WWE in 1994 were actually written by the wrestlers themselves as Shawn Michaels and Scott Hall wrote almost all of their feud from late 1993 all the way through Survivor Series in 1994 once Kevin Nash became involved and Bret/Owen was mostly wrote or came up with almost everything that they did in their feud as well. Vince McMahon was taking a break because of the steroid scandal and everything went backwards again once he went back to running everything again in very late 1994.