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Rock or Austin?


HarmonicGenerator

Rock or Austin?  

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ROCK-VS-AUSTIN.jpg

 

Listening to the SCG Monday Night War Timelines, with Stone Cold Steve Austin the biggest star in the industry and The Rock a clear hypermegastar in the making, it got me thinking. Who's your favourite?

 

I'm not asking who was more important to wrestling, who drew more, who was the bigger star, or anything like that. I'm just interested to see who people like more. 

 

For me, it's The Rock. I've gone on before about how I was never keen on Stone Cold, and I can't say I'm massively fond of a lot of Rock's Attitude Era stuff either. But when Hollywood Rock came along in 2003, he was just incredible, and I started to see what I hadn't noticed previously. I went back and watched 2002 Rock, 2001 Rock, 2000 Rock, and realised just how special he is. So I became a Rock fan, and I'd pick him over Austin every time.

 

 

So - Rock or Austin? Who's your guy?

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At the time, The Rock. 100%. When Austin won at WrestleMania 15 I had the kind of entitled teenage twat strop you see when someone like Cena or Reigns wins a match now. I couldn't stand Austin because of overpushed babyface etc, and I loved The Rock.

 

But in about 2004, I bought all of the WWF/WWE The Rock DVDs that were out at the time and started finding him really cringeworthy as a babyface. When he came back in 2011, it further emphasised how shitty and juvenile his stuff was.

 

I still really like Nation/Corporation Rock and Hollywood Rock, but Austin's big babyface run has aged a lot better than the couple of years where Rock took over his spot.

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Austin until 99. Then I started watching SD and the Rock was the boy. I stopped giving a shit about Austin when he turned during the invasion lead up and stopped giving a shit about Rock when he came back in the close to mid 2000's all hollywooden.

I'm again interested in Austin due to the podcast but I'm still not that bothered about the Rock.

 

Looking back, some of their stuff I didn't like back then, I like now, so the above is based on what I thought at the time.

 

Also, I haven't voted based on the above.

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Austin for me all day long.

 

I checked out of Wrestling for about a year and he single handedly dragged me back, I fucking love him and still do, everything about it resonated with me, like a lot of folk I was a bit of a little shit at School and seeing Austin stand up to Authority, talk about living vicariously. The Stunner was such a brilliant move, the beer, the middle finger, I associate him with all of those signs in the crowd that have come to be a symbol of the Attitude Era. Just a pure crazy, anything goes vibe, coming out to Stun someone during a random match just cause he can, driving bloody vehicles to ringside and what not.

 

In short I always found Rock to be almost, but not quite Austin, not quite at that level.

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Austin. He was incredible from late 1996 until the act started wearing a bit thin in 1999. Brilliant promos and some outstanding matches. Phenomenal work as face or heel. He was in some great angles, loads of them, but just as many times he was thrown out with a mic and told to make some magic happen. And it always did. In the first half on 1997 when Shawn Michaels was being his cunty self and Bret Hart was breaking down, Austin carried the company on his back and did a great job of it. Easy to forget that he was working hurt constantly throughout all this period. His neck was fucked even before Owen 3:16 said I just broke your neck.

 

Rock was brilliant too but never felt as much "the man" as Austin did. Even in 2000 when Austin was gone, he didn't have that run as THE guy for long. He was unselfish, he's the most charismatic guy there has ever been or will ever be in wrestling and he could talk. But there were too many childish promos for the real good stuff to shine and his work in the ring was often sloppy. Something about those daft slaps, the horrible sharp shooter and the elbow finish that took me out of things. His brilliant matches still overcame those flaws, like Cena, but he never was on the level of Austin as a worker and never felt like The guy for anywhere near as long.

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Rock.

 

Rock was the coolest guy in the world back from 98 to late 99, the sideburns, the shirts everything about him was cool. His voice was different then, sounded deeper and he spoke slower. He really came across as a jock bully but one that was funny enough to make you like him. I always thought he made a great babyface though because of how unselfish he was. For a top guy he lost a lot and so when he would win a big match it felt more important as opposed to Austin who always won.

 

I liked Austin too but not as much and I'll be honest I remember being pissed off when he came back in 2000 and just started giving everyone the stunner, Interrupting matches just to give everyone the stunner and make them look like shit. 

 

Looking back now of course, both of them were amazing.

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The Rock. Can't deny that Stone Cold equalled, if not, eclipsed Hogan in popularity, but I'm slightly biased as I'm a Rock Fan. Though he's certainly at the peak of his acting career right now which probably has him in a bigger position than ever. He was the perfect choice as the top guy while Austin was injured. Could be the biggest heel ever and still have stuff that left you in stitches like the Leaving Sacremento song.

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Pitcos nailed it perfectly. As a kid The Rock was some next level shit compared to any one ever, but looking back his great 1999/01 babyface run was full of some awful content, but he always got it over. With hindsight and the Network, Austin's style has aged well and you can see why he was the hottest thing they ever had.

 

The Rock is still The Rock though. He showed with the Punk feud that when he updates his schtick he's as big time as they come. The Cena feud showed that he's still got a remarkable ability to get the crowd to chant his awful catchphrases (even if something like "Kung Pow bitch" was a total goal kick).

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Austin was my superman growing up.

 

Having such a destructive family environment somehow when I watched wwf raw/smackdown or heat when that glass shattered little ole me used to pop like a motherfucker.

 

Rock vs Austin at mania 19 is still one match that makes me tear up and involved genuine emotion.

 

I remember going to the smackdown summer bash tour at the men arena and Austin was billed as a special guest ref, I had front row tickets just so I could be close enough to maybe slap hands with my childhood idol, better yet I cried like a morherfucker and got drenched in beer.

 

Austin all the way

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15 year old me would say the rock, current me says Austin. As has already been said already, the stuff Rock was saying between 1999 and 2001 was at times complete garbage but it was seriously over and me and my brother hung on every word he said. He was funny, cool and, despite the People's Elbow being ridiculous in hindsight, good in the ring. When Austin returned I just wanted to see The Rock beat him and was gutted with the result at Mania 17 but loved the heel Austin stuff during the Invasion.

 

Now I look back and realise Stone Cold was a total badass. He just looked to be legitimately hard as nails and was someone you just wouldn't mess, friend or foe as you'd just get stunnered for no reason. I think his matches and promos have stood the test of time and I feel like I missed out a bit by not being a full-on Austin fan boy at the time.

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When I was a teen during the Attitude era, Rock was untouchable, but as I've got older it's all about Austin. As someone has said, his work has aged a lot better and for me, that first meeting between him and Tyson is the best piece of business from that entire era. His heel runs with Triple H and the guitar strumming comedy act with the likes of Spike Dudley were incredible but as the headline babyface, when that glass smashed you just knew it was going down.

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