Ever since FTR’s arrival in AEW, there have been teases of an impending return of the Four Horsemen. Sometimes, it’s been as subtle as Dax Harwood holding up 4 fingers. Other times, they’ve damn near beaten viewers over the head with “Remember how Tully Blanchard and Arn Anderson were in the Four Horsemen and these guys are kind of partnered up with them now?!!!?”
But at least as far as when this post is being crafted, nothing has become officially stamped out that this is 100% the direction. It could very well just be that FTR is with Tully Blanchard now and that’s the end of it.
I highly doubt that’s the case, though, so in the spirit of jumping to conclusions, let’s try to picture how this new Four Horsemen group may come about and how it might be structured.
The original group was comprised of Ric Flair as the leader with Arn Anderson, Ole Anderson and Tully Blanchard along with J.J. Dillon as their manager. They don’t need to replicate that to a T, but it’s the template to work from.
Obviously, we know FTR and Tully Blanchard are part of this. I’d go so far as to say Arn Anderson will be looped in, too. He walked away during the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express fight, rather than get involved, which may be more than a sign that he’s aligned himself with Blanchard, at least. Plus, we know he’s worked as an advisor to FTR with their contracts. It just makes sense that partnership hasn’t dissolved.
But those can’t be the four. Anderson and Blanchard will just fill the Dillon role.
Shawn Spears seems like another lock. He’s Blanchard’s other protege and there seem to be no indications that alliance is going away any time soon.
FTR is the tag team while Spears is the midcard act and could fight for the TNT Championship. He’s not in a proper position to be the guy and take the Ric Flair spot as the leader of the pack.
That position is really only down to two people: Hangman Adam Page and Cody Rhodes.
Both make sense, to varying degrees. Both have their downsides, too.
When it comes to Page, he’s been friendly with FTR for quite some time and just screwed The Young Bucks out of a match for the tag titles at All Out. There’s been no proper explanation (yet) why he did that, so we have to assume it’s because he’s aligned with this new group.
Hangman is into cowboy shit and with a name like the horsemen, that’s rather fitting, is it not? On top of that, being the head of this group could be what pushes him into that main event tier that he tasted, but wasn’t able to fully live in.
On the downside, Page isn’t the most flamboyant talker. He’d have to abandon his loner bad ass gimmick to do this, too, which may be a mistake.
With Cody, he almost seems like the obvious pick. I mean, here’s a picture of him literally referencing this very idea:
He’s got the bravado and the clout to fill the Ric Flair spot, for sure. By no means is he the same on the mic, but we’re talking The Nature Boy here—few are in his league.
Cody’s one of the top talents in the company and a bona fide main-eventer like virtually no others on the roster. He’s in an echelon with just a few like Chris Jericho. Cody also has a connective tissue in that he and Anderson have been paired up for quite some time, so they may want to continue that partnership.
The downside to this is that it takes Cody away from The Nightmare Family as a possible stable that can feud with this new Four Horsemen. Considering how often his father was in opposition to Flair’s group, it might be too odd for Cody to be a member instead of leading the charge against them.
Then again, that could be a positive. It flips the script a bit and does something different, rather than just retreading familiar ground.
It also goes against his rivalry with Spears, who hates his guts. They’d have to set aside those differences to work together. That’s not the end of the world, though.
For my money, the group I’d prefer is Cody, FTR and Spears with Blanchard and Anderson as the managers. I think Page’s involvement should be a red herring and he should be part of The Elite fighting against them, instead.
Trademarks and copyrights and all that legal jargon is tough to decipher when you have all the information and nearly impossible when you don’t.
Right now, it’s hard to say who has the rights to the name The Four Horsemen.
Conrad Thompson at least tried to trademark it under his Toot Toot LLC company. it’s currently listed as abandoned with a failure to respond or late response. So does that default back to WWE or is there something else to it?
Let’s assume they can’t call it Four Horsemen and have to go with something else. Hell, maybe they want to call it something else, even, just to stand out. We’ll all know it’s essentially the new Four Horsemen without needing that name, so maybe it isn’t worth the hassle.
WWE did a newer incarnation, of sorts, with Evolution with Ric Flair as the mentor, Triple H in the Flair role, Batista as the enforcer and Randy Orton as the prodigy. TNA had Fortune with AJ Styles, Robert Roode, James Storm and Frankie Kazarian headed by Ric Flair.
Unfortunately, it’s impossible to know what names they may be cooking up. AEW hasn’t been around long enough for me to feel comfortable giving a proper guess, either, as they’ve proven themselves to be all over the place with creative decisions depending on who is making the call.
I never would have imagined they’d do a Casino Ladder Match, as that makes no sense, even though they seem to lean heavily toward gambling names. Just the same, I wouldn’t have thought The Revival would come in and be called FTR, or Chris Jericho would create a Mimosa Mayhem Match.
Maybe they go with the Fortune route and try to do a play off the word “four” in some fashion. My eyes roll at the idea of something like 4cast (forecast) or 4ward (forward). Fourtress? The Fourum? Fource? Fourmidable? God fourbid they do some abomination like The Foursemen. Yeesh. I’ve actually seen that name before and it’s atrocious.
If they wanted to go bland, they could just call it The Stable. After all, that’s a two-way pun for horses and wrestling factions. I wouldn’t hate that, considering some of the alternatives.