Thursday, 18 July 2013

WWE Live in the UK: April 2013 DVD Review

WWE Live in the UK: April 2013 is a two-disc presenting footage from WWE's two television tapings at the O2 Arena in London, England. The disc includes full episodes Raw, Smackdown, Main Event, Superstars and Saturday Morning Slam and is available now from, priced at £12.99

Here's a sneak peak at the DVD:

WWE Live in the UK: April 2013 Content 

Disc One:

WWE Raw, 22nd April 2013

Paul Heyman Reads an E-Mail From Triple H

R-Truth vs. Antonio Cesaro

The Shield Arrive in London

Brodus Clay with Tensai & The Funkadactyls vs. Damien Sandow with Cody Rhodes

Raw Recap: Dolph Ziggler Cashes in Money in the Bank

Vicke Guerrero Adds a Stipulation to World Heavyweight Champion Dolph Ziggler's Match

Raw Recap: CM Punk walks out on Raw.

The Shield Promises to Serve Undertaker Justice.

If Chris Jericho wins he receive a World Heavyweight Championship match at Extreme Rules
Chris Jericho vs. World Heavyweight Champion Dolph Ziggler with AJ Lee & Big E Langston

Josh Matthews interviews Hall of Famer Mick Foley about Ryback

Tensai with Brodus Clay & The Funkadactyls vs. Cody Rhodes with Damien Sandow

Tag Team Champion Daniel Bryan tries to Strategize with Undertaker

Smackdown Rebound: Randy Orton & Sheamus vs. Big Show & Mark Henry

Josh Matthews Interviews Ryback.

Zack Ryder vs. Big E Langston

Six Man Tag Team Match
The Undertaker & Tag Team Champions Team Hell No vs. The Shield

WWE Champion Warns Hall of Famer Mick Foley about Ryback

William Regal vs. Fandango with Summer Rae

Divas Championship Number One Contenders Battle Royal
AJ Lee vs. Aksana vs. Naomi vs. Layla vs. Tamina Snuka

Hall of Famer Mick Foley Makes His Way to the Ring.

Hall of Famer Mick Foley Confronts Ryback


WWE Main Event, 24th April 2013.

JBL Interviews Mark Henry.

Gauntlet Match
Jey Uso with Jimmy Uso vs. Mark Henry

Jimmy Uso with Jey Uso vs. Mark Henry

Santino Marella vs. Mark Henry

The Great Khali with Hornswoggle & Natalya vs. Mark Henry

Matt Striker Interviews Jack Swagger and Zeb Colter


Disc Two

WWE Superstars, 25th April 2013

Jimmy Uso with Jey Uso vs. Michael McGillicutty

Tag Team Match
Kaitlyn & Layla vs. Tamina Snuka & Aksana

Raw Rebound: Hall of Famer Mick Foley Confronts Ryback


WWE Smackdown, 26th April 2013

No Disqualification Match
Alberto Del Rio with Ricardo Rodriguez vs. Jack Swagger with Zeb Colter

Layla vs. Aksana

The Shield Vow to Beat Undertaker

Justin Gabriel vs. Fandango with Summer Rae

Sheamus vs. Big Show

William Regal vs. Intercontinental Champion Wade Barrett

Randy Orton vs. Mark Henry

Raw Rebound: Hall of Famer Mick Foley Confronts Ryback.

Undertaker vs. Dean Ambrose with The Shield.


WWE Saturday Morning Slam, 11th May 2013

Mr. Socko and The Cobra make a Match.

Santino Marella vs. Jinder Mahal

Hall of Famer Mick Foley and Sheamus Do a Duet.

Saturday Morning Spotlight: Randy Orton & Sheams

Tag Team Match
Randy Orton & Sheamus vs. Prime Time Players


Special Feature

WCW Championship Match
Chris Jericho (C) vs. Kurt Angle
WWF Rebellion, 3rd November 2001.


WWE Live in the UK: April 2013 Review

Usually, I'd spend this review talking about how WWE are simply attempting to gain some extra money out of UK fans, by featuring simply regular episodes of Raw, Smackdown and their other weekly television programs that just so happened to be filmed in the O2 Arena in London. WWE doesn't do this in any other markets and it's rare that you get full episodes of TV on DVD. However, their is a notable draw to this DVD set, as their was a notable draw to the two television tapings, that being a rare appearance from The Undertaker.

Undertaker competes in two good contests, firstly teaming with then Tag Team Champion Team Hell No to take on The Shield on Raw and then in singles action against Dean Ambrose on Smackdown. As of writing, these remain 'Takers final performances on WWE television and therefore bring a certain edge to this DVD set. Whilst we know Undertaker will most likely return eventually around Wrestlemania time, I'd be surprised if he had another match on Raw, and even more surprised if he turned up on Smackdown again, and certainly wouldn't expect those matches to be of the quality of the two he has on this set.

Alongside Undertaker, there was also a number of appearances from WWE veterans like Triple H, Hall of Famer Mick Foley, Paul Heyman and Chris Jericho which again makes these shows feel important as you watch through it. It's a shame however that there is no appearance from Brock Lesnar who was entrenched in feud with Triple H at the time, but obviously Lesnar didn't want to travel to London to show his face, as it really would've added some extra bit to the opening segment of Raw between Triple H and Paul Heyman.

Whilst watching through the set, it's clear that both the Raw and Smackdown shows were working with a smaller roster than they were used to, with a number of superstars pulling double duty, or in the case of Mark Henry quintuple duty as he works no less than five matches, across both Main Event and Smackdown. Tons of Funk and Team Rhodes Scholars also turn up twice on Raw, in what is clearly an attempt to fill time but does become a bit tedious as there is no real difference between the two matches.

One thing that bugs me on this DVD is the inclusion of break, yet the commentators talking about what happened on the WWE App during the break. Surely, having the WWE App allows them to put the footage onto the DVD and thus allowing the home viewer to see complete matches? It would also have been nice for WWE to include footage of other events that happened in side the arena, such as Daniel Bryan's attempt to hug The Undertaker and Triple H and New Age Outlaws coming out to take down The Shield and Fandango closing the show on Smackdown, if only as DVD extras.

The other notable thing I noticed on this set, was how WWE edits their shows and removes and adds crowd reaction, almost at whim. A section of the fantastic Chris Jericho vs. Dolph Ziggler is missing and even without prior knowledge of what occured in the O2 Arena, it's clear that something has been taken out. Some of the crowds chants have been removed, which at times is frustrating as the chants were pretty imaginiative at time such as a "We Want Chyna" chant that occured during the Divas Tag Team Match on Superstars. Reactions have been added onto Smackdown, where the crowd was actually pretty quiet for most of the show, apart from the odd attempt at some random chanting during matches like Mark Henry vs. Randy Orton and Sheamus vs. Big Show.

The other thing that is frustrating with this set is the amount of recaps that are left intact, despite the recaps being about shows that are also included on the DVD set. The confrontation between Mick Foley and Ryback is featured four times, and it wasn't even that great a segment to start with. You'll find yourself skipping through these, when the time could have been better used for extras.

There are some hidden gems on the set, as well as a chance to see how much WWE has changed in a mere three months. A match that stands out for me is the Superstars contest, between Jimmy Uso and Michael McGillicutty. This is one of the matches that benefits from being on television and not in the arena, as the crowd were pretty cold for this one due to the lack of television exposure for either man on television at the time. However, watching the match on the big screen and close up, allows you to see the talents that each man holds, instead of getting dragged in to Fandangoing with the rest of the crowd. It's also strange to see McGillicutty still under this gimmick, before he became a Paul Heyman guy and changed his name to Curtis Axel. Can you imagine Curtis Axel losing to Jimmy Uso today? Neither can I!

The only special feature present on this disc is a match from Rebellion 2001 from Manchester, England, with Chris Jericho defending the WCW Championship against Kurt Angle. It's pretty good match, as you'd expect from Jericho and Angle, but isn't really up there with some of their other encounters. It's always nice to see other matches that were filmed in the UK on these sets, but it's a shame we only get one on this one.

In closing this is a pretty enjoyable set with a number of good matches, but could do with a little bit more effort from everyone involved to really make it into the must-have set that it could become every six months.

My Tops Three Matches from this Live in the UK: April 2013

1. Undertaker & Tag Team Champions Team Hell No vs. The Shield WWE Raw, April 22nd 2013

2. Chris Jericho vs. Dolph Ziggler, WWE Raw, April 22nd 2013

3. Undertaker vs. Dean Ambrose, WWE Smackdown, April 26th 2013

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