Re: Hulk Hogan 1993
Going a bit off topic but the Hogan thing to me is just an attempt by the WWE of finding a better draw than Bret, a trend that would repeat itself through Hart's time as top babyface. Hart is one my favourite babyfaces but sadly he could not draw as big as Hogan or Austin. Having Hogan back in the main event scene even for a few months was probably seen as a way of getting more viewers. Look at this way:
1992 - Hogan leaves due to steroid scandal Bret beats Flair in a surprise win to become World Champion thus becoming top babyface.
1993 - Hart loses to top heel at Wrestlemania but Hogan returns and becomes champion again.Hogan leaves and the WWF attempt to make Luger top babyface.
1994 - Luger gimmick fails and Hart is pushed again beating the top heel at Wrestlemania. However by the end of the year Diesel wins the title and is promoted as top babyface.
1995 - Diesel is a flop and after a year Hart gains a clean victory over Diesel to win the title. Hart is top babyface again.
1996 - Hart loses to Michaels who is now promoted as the top babyface. Michaels doesn't draw much more than Bret despite him being a top class wrestler like Hart. Vince then persuades Hart to return to the company and he is once again top babyface.
1997 - Hart is the top babyface and is due to win the title from Shawn but he gets shafted again. Hart finally turns heel and puts Austin over. Hart retains a babyface status in Canada and leaves the company in 1997 as the top guy.
1998 - Austin is the top babyface and face of the company. A much bigger draw than Hart, his popularity is just what Vince wanted.
So you can see how the New Generation era can be defined as a constant attempt to find a top draw replacement for Hogan. Hart by default was the guy because the others were not much better. Shawn was his equal, perhaps even better in some cases but Diesel and Luger were dire and I can see why the babyface spot kept coming back to Hart. Hart was a a top class wrestler but what matters more is ratings.