Regularly Beating Up James Ellsworth
Join Date: Feb 2012
Re: Did you ever get tired of Rock/Austin?
No, I did not.
Rock/Austin is the greatest feud ever for me. They are two of my favorite wrestlers of all time and on top of that, they had tremendous chemistry in the ring, in promos, backstage segments, skits etc and provided us with several classic moments, matches and interactions. I loved all their feuds beginning with the clash over the IC title in late 97 which provided some memorable moments like Austin throwing the IC title in the river, destroying NOD at the DX PPV etc. You could tell they could make magic in the ring ever since then.
The late 98-99 feud had a great deal of depth and a brilliantly written story behind it beginning at SvS 98 with Shane screwing Austin and Rock turning heel becoming Vince's corporate champ. I also liked how they were both gradually built off the Austin/Vince and Foley/Rock feuds and Paul Wight's presence also added a surprise element to it with Show being on the Corporation's side in the beginning but issues with Rock leading us to sense dissension within the Corporation. Both Corporate Rock and Austin's anti corporate, rebellious character were on fire and worked very well together. Lots of memorable moments like Rock throwing Austin over the river, Austin destroying his limo, the beer bash and the match itself at WM 15 was pretty solid too although the worst of the 3 WM matches. I'll even say Backlash 99 was better.
I can see why some people would be critical of the 01 feud though since it lacked any story or depth to it. The build up great but if you look at the story, it was plain and simple built on two titans clashing and one-upmanship to determine whose the top dog in the company. They did have some background as they had hinted the match with several face-offs (Armageddon 00, RR 01) and the fans were eager and went nuts every time these two locked horns but yeah, the story aspect is lacking and Debra's presence as Rock's manager did nothing to enhance it. The way they presented the match with the numerous video packages and highlights was awesome though and the match itself is legendary.
Their finale was extremely well done with a different dynamic with Hollywood Rock to keep the feud fresh. The feud was built primarily on Rock's burning desire and need to beat Austin at WM and provided us with some epic moments like the Rock concert, Rock's promos to Austin declaring his challenge, several backstage segments with Rock etc. Someone said it seemed a bit one sided for the Rock and I do see that now tbh. I also like how they had the Austin/Bischoff and Rock/Hurricane feuds going along simultaneously and were able to interrelate them to the major feud with Austin costing Rock the match vs Hurricane and Rock interfering on Bischoff's behalf. The match at WM 19 was excellent with Rock's over the top antics and the perfect closure to an epic rivalry. Although, I wish it was known beforehand that it'd be Austin's last match since they could've added a stipulation to make the match even bigger.