Jeff Farmer on keeping the NWO Sting gimmick a secret backstage, the anticipated reaction to the character, the popularity of NWO Japan in NJPW

By Jason Powell, Editor (@prowrestlingnet)

The Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling Podcast with Jeff Farmer (a/k/a NWO Sting)
Host: JP John Poz
Twitter: @TwoManPowerTrip
Interview available at

The creation of the “NWO/Impostor” Sting character: “Eric [Bischoff] would have to tell you because I don’t know where the concept started or who came up with it or the whole kind of birth of where that came out of but I know that they thought that physically I was similar to Steve (Sting) and size wise we are about the same size even though I was probably heavier than him we were kind of the same general size. They had to find someone who could look the part and be able to pull off the switch. They actually took me in and did prosthetics. I wore contacts and it was very elaborate how they went in and did a mask (like a plaster mask) of Steve’s face and did a plaster mask of my face.

“They used a guy from F/X that was a really good F/X guy that they were using that did all the whole prosthetic pieces of my eyebrows, forehead and chin that they made to make me look similar in the face, but later we dropped that because you couldn’t tell with the face paint on and I didn’t even use it. At first I did and I’d sit in makeup for an hour and put in contacts because I remember when I got out of the limo that was me when that happened and when I kick Lex (Luger) I couldn’t even see that good because of the contacts. Eric had told me that if it got out that they were going to squash it and kill the deal so I didn’t say a word and everybody else involved didn’t say anything and it was pretty kayfabe at the time including the boys, who weren’t sure if it was really Sting. I think that was really one of the coos of wrestling at that point was even though it was a work that the guys didn’t know if it was Sting.”

The night he joined the NWO: “You never know sometimes when you are in the thick of it. You can watch it back and maybe pickup things you could have done better or but I agree with you and I thought it went off great and it was believable. I worked with Lex after that for years and I love Lex and was always fun to work with for me. It was good and it was definitely successful and I think Eric was happy and the results were that nobody knew and I think it accomplished what they wanted. You also have to remember that I was also taking orders and just trying to do my best to pull this off. I knew it was a big deal but at the same time I was just going along with what [Hulk] Hogan and I think he was the one that had the whole idea of taking it where it went. Eric had approached me but I don’t know who was kind of masterminding the stuff and I don’t know who it was, it could have been [Scott] Hall or [Kevin] Nash or all three of them.”

Learning to mimic Sting and bringing the “NWO Sting” come to life: “It was such a fun time for me. I had to study Steve’s moves because I really didn’t wrestle that way but I knew he did the splash and I knew he did the Scorpion (Death Lock) and the ‘whooooo’ and the off the rope brainbuster kind of thing, so I watched what he did enough but I never really went and practiced it. Maybe I went through it a little bit at the Power Plant to make sure I knew how to do it but I was really just going off of what I had seen him do. I kind of not mocked it a little bit but I was just trying to go along with what I had seen him do but it was fun and I knew that it was not often that in the U.S. you get to be the top of a program but for me as not a top level guy (and never was in WCW more in Japan) it was a thrill.”

What was the anticipated reaction of the fans to an impostor Sting: “My reaction was that I wanted them to boo. It would be that well you are the impostor or the fake and that was the response that I wanted. When I’d throw my arms up and do a “whoo” instead of them cheering, I wanted them to boo. It was funny when I went to Japan they knew the difference between Sting and NWO Sting because I started going over there and working this character and they are very smart fans in Japan and some of the best fans in the world because they know everything. They very clearly knew that this an NWO version of Sting and they wanted and were hoping that him and I would wrestle each other over there. The idea was to illicit a response from the fans. Which kind of didn’t really work because when I was with [Masa] Chono and [Great] Muta when we were doing the NWO the fans were loving it and they liked the bad guys. We were ‘heeling’ over there and it was a very successful character.”

Being included in the 1996 War Games as “NWO Sting”: “I have to tell you guys that that was probably the most exciting night in wrestling for me. I remember very clearly just the ‘pop’ that I got when I came out and the whole thing because it was a big event and everybody from the announcers, the referees, to the TV people in the back everybody kind if did a great job of getting this to work. The whole thing in the ring at the end it was to me one of the best highlights that I had in the business that night at War Games.”

How over the NWO Japan faction was in NJPW: “An interesting side not to all this is later they had other ‘impostors’ and I don’t know if you remember that. Like they had Kanyon and a few others doing it and the reason that happened was because it was the New Japan thing was really on the same heels of what was going on there (in WCW). It was really becoming popular in New Japan at the same time. They had said that they wanted the NWO stars to come to Japan because it was heating and Hogan, Hall and Nash weren’t going to go in the middle of a really hot thing and go to Japan so once it died down even a little bit they asked who they could send from the NWO and it was me, [Buff] Bagwell and Scott Norton who was already a superstar in New Japan.The thing with Japan just kind of took off. Sadly, I wasn’t around for the other part of when they had some fallout over who was responsible and they did the red and black NWO and broke them into teams and I wasn’t even around for that whole segment because I was working full time for New Japan. I was in WCW but as a talent for New Japan so I was over there most of the time.”

Other topics include breaking into the business, the frenzy the “NWO Sting” help create in Japan as part of the NWO Japan faction, WCW, Cobra, Thunder/Lightning, AJPW, The WCW Power Plant, Eric Bischoff, and more.


Readers Comments (1)

  1. Johnny Skinwalker May 17, 2024 @ 9:09 pm

    I feel like WCW should have reinvented him later on. Maybe comeback as a vengeful man wanting to get back at Sting for “destroying his life”. Hell why not call him the Black Scorpion.

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