clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

WWE 'Greatest Rivalries' DVD cover art for 'Shawn Michaels vs Bret Hart' two-disc set

If you buy something from an SB Nation link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

The WWE video library is so extensive they've dedicated plenty of resources to producing as many DVDs as possible. At first, home video business was booming, with plenty of interesting releases flying off the shelves in record numbers. But eventually, of course, the company ran out of truly compelling subject matter.

I mean, really, who wants to watch yet another movie centered around the self-destruction of the Hardy Boyz?

This year, though, they're bringing out the big guns in an effort to revive sales, one of which is this entry in the "Greatest Rivalries" series featuring perhaps the greatest of them all in Shawn Michaels vs. Bret Hart.

Set for release on Oct. 25, 2011, the two-disc set will cover their extensive issues throughout the years with plenty of matches between the two. Here's the Amazon description:

For more than a decade, Bret Hit Man Hart and Shawn Michaels engaged in perhaps the most storied rivalry in the history of sports entertainment, from their teams (the Hart Foundation and the Rockers), through battles for the Intercontinental Championship and the richest prize in the business, the WWE Championship. Their enmity spilled out of the ring, and led to the most infamous incident in the history of professional wrestling, The Montreal Screwjob. More than a decade later, the two men buried the hatchet as both are now WWE Hall of Famers. Now, for the first time ever, the two sit down together and rehash their intertwined destinies in Shawn Michaels vs. Bret Hart. These new, never-before-aired, interviews will shed new light and insight on issues and controversies fans have speculated about for years.

The thought of Michaels and Hart sitting down together and rehashing everything, including the "Montreal Screwjob" is absolutely delectable. Even after they made up when Hart returned to WWE last year, the tension when they were around each other was still palpable, though they claim it's now gone completely.

This also serves to spark debate over who exactly was the better of the two. That's a difficult question to answer when one considers the myriad of factors at play with what constitutes one wrestler being "better" than the other. Surely a set criteria is necessary and it's not a black and white issue by any stretch.

There was debate in the comments of an earlier post here on Cageside Seats on this very subject and I firmly came down on the side of "HBK." His workrate was unmatchable as was his ring generalship. He performed his best on the biggest stages while the lights were shining the brightest, even when he had a completely broken back.

Once he grew into himself and was allowed to cut loose, he was one of the best on the mic, too. His deficiencies are relegated to poor attitude and an unwillingness to "play the game," as it were. But being difficult to work with didn't affect how incredible his matches were. There is no one you could put in the ring opposite Michaels that wouldn't come out looking better for it.

The same cannot be said for Hart. His style of promo was so different and his delivery so stilted that he always came out looking badly over-matched and outgunned when he went head on against Michaels in a promo.

I won't criticize his work in the ring; I couldn't rightly do so and maintain any shred of credibility. He was one of the best technical wrestlers of all time. Hell, I can remember a match he had on Raw in 1994 against the 1-2-3 Kid (X-pac or Sean Waltman, whatever you want to call him) in which Bret made him look like a bona fide superstar, which is no small feat, especially at that time. 

In fact, to show I'm not totally taking a dump on Hart, even with my strong leanings toward Michaels, I've included the Hart vs. 1-2-3 Kid match after the jump. And feel free to state your case as to who was the better of the top, Michaels or Hart, in the comments section.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Cageside Seats Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your pro wrestling news from Cageside Seats