Originally Posted by Clique
I can agree with that. It was about the opportunity Pillman had and the era he presented the gimmick. Great example of right time + right place but Pillman had the smarts to really work that gimmick well in WCW, ECW and WWF. The mid-90s and later was the time for that in your face presentation and guys like Pillman, Shane Douglas and others took advantage of it.
To this point fans were ready for that type of gimmick. I believe that a lot of people had grown weary of the comic book style good vs evil that professional wrestling had and because fans were more knowledgeable about wrestling in the 90s, it took something extra to get a guy like him over.
He was ahead of the curve as the "loose cannon", but as a babyface he didn't stand out at all...granted we never saw the "loose cannon" gimmick done with a face designation by Pillman but we did see nameless faceless "Flyin" Brian and it brought a modicum of success but if he hadn't been ahead of that realism curve would we be talking about him right now?
I think that's the point. You add that he somehow felt that fans were ready for that type of gimmick and made a complete 180 from "Flyin" Brian typical babyface to "loose cannon" Brian unconventional and unpredictable heel. That move generated more success for him than he would have ever achieved otherwise.
I think it was neat of the E to release a DVD collection on a guy who had been dead for quite awhile and never achieved the megastardom his former tag partner did but its more a measurement of Pillman's story and that the E found it and him worthy enough to make a DVD about. I kinda have to ask again but if that DVD wasn't made would we really be talking about Pillman now?
If the answer is Yes, then the logical thought would be that Pillman was just that great, if the answer is No, then the logical belief is that the E and fans believe Pillman to be that great or influential. Either way he could have been a forgotten name in the industry and would have been had he stayed inside the line but he was smart enough to break through some barriers to make a name for himself.