WWE DVD Review: WrestleMania 29
It is the biggest show in the WWE calendar and it also one of the most sought after wrestling show tickets too. It is of course WrestleMania. This is the show that even the most die hard anti-WWE fan will take notice of and maybe even watch as well.
WM is the event that kick started the WWE's rise to global domination and means so much to so many fans across the globe as well.
Now nearly 30 years on the event still send goosebumps down the spine of many as they eagerly await the action to start. The WWE have now rather cunningly made this a weekend long event too, with fan events, signing and memorabilia on show too. Alongside countless veteran and current roster members, there is also the annual Hall Of Fame Ceremony.
Now back to the DVD at hand. First up like many Mania's of recent years there are a few poor matches here, but when things kick off they really kick off in style.
This event was a card of three parts. First up we had John Cena taking on The Rock for the WWE Championship. Which was of course a marked improvement on their previous encounters. However it did come at a cost to Rock who absorbed some nasty injuries along the way.
Next on the fans hit list was the ultra intense 'No Holds Barred' scrap between Brock Lesnar and Triple H. They certainly had their work boots on here. You could feel every bump like it was your own body.
But of course the match most people were yearning to see was the return of Undertaker to defend his winning streak against young upstart CM Punk. Punk had after all belittled the memory of the late Paul Bearer and was certainly a hated man before the get go. Considering he rarely makes more than one appearance a year these days Taker showed no signs of slowing down. Although by the end you could see his pain and delight in what he had just participated in.
Elsewhere on this well put together CD set you get the pre-show encounter between Wade Barrett and The Miz for the Intercontinental Championship. The Shield making their WM debut against the trio of Randy Orton, Sheamus and The Big Show. The Tag Team titles on the line as Team No Hell defend against Dolph Ziggler and Big E Langston. Chris Jericho facing the over the top Fandango and Jack Swagger tackle the World Heavyweight Champion Alberto Del Rio.
The under card and World Title match are all worthy additions here, the main issue is that some play out to indifference. Fandango, The Shield and Ziggler come out of proceedings very well indeed I must add.
On the extras front we are as always spoilt for Mania moments and choice. The Hall Of Fame footage is superb and very interesting. Younger fans may skip through a few inductions of course, but those old enough to remember Bob Backlund, Bruno Samartino and even celeb Donald Trump will enjoy their montages and speeches. Backlund is hilarious and Samartino seems very moved to be there.
More modern entrants Mick Foley, Trish Stratus and Booker T are also very well received and each makes us feel their pride as they give their speech. It was especially nice to see Booker's brother Stevie Ray on TV again. Foley was as expected totally over the top with his section of the show, but we come to expect that from him these days.
There is also the post-show event from the MetLife Stadium too.
Blu-Ray owners get even more bang for their buck here with some episodes of Monday Night Raw, the Triple H/Lesnar contract signing, CM Punk challenge to end the streak and a Q&A with John Cena and The Rock.
WrestleMania 29 is a roller coaster of a ride from start to finish. There are some dips along the way, but when it climbs it does indeed climb. The final flourish of matches here will certainly leave you on an adrenaline high.
WrestleMania 29 is available now via Freemantle Media.
Www.wwedvd.co.uk and all good retailers.
RRP £24.99 (DVD), £34.99 (Blu-Ray)
By Phil Allely