The UK has to be one of WWE’s hottest markets. They travel to Britain twice a year to tape their shows and the reception is always thunderous. From sold out arenas to ravenous fans, the UK loves the WWE and the feeling is mutual. The Superstars always point to the British crowd as some of the most loyal and the best to work in front of, as such UK Raw Shows are always different with a party atmosphere and more focus on the wrestling.
I attended this set of tapings and can tell you that the crowd was electric, Wade Barrett was treated like a returning hero and was so genuinely touched by his reception that he took to the house mic once the cameras stopped rolling to thank us for making him feel so appreciated. It surprises me none that WWE reward us with a collector’s DVD set of the tour since it is a special event, but after the excitement of the evening, you must look back upon the DVD with open eyes. What does it give us and is it worth our investment? Let’s find out.
Well, first of all the set contains two discs and features Raw, Smackdown and an episode of Main Event which was recorded in England, but since it doesn’t air here, it is somewhat of a rare gem. There are two special features, and a great inclusion they are too. The first features The Ultimate Warrior taking on the late “Macho Man” Randy Savage at the ONLY major UK pay per view in WWE history; Summerslam 1992 and the second features The Rock taking on X-Pac at Capital Carnage 1998 in London.
As Raw and Smackdown are weekly and episodic, there has been some great changes since November, even though it is a short time ago, so there is already a sense of this as antiquated. You are probably only buying this as a possible memento of a fun day out, and as such the content seems unimportant anyway, especially if you are going to spend the duration playing “Spot Me in The Crowd”. This isn’t to say that just because it was a particular episode in a long history of episodes of a TV Show that it cannot be enjoyed on it’s own merit as I pointed out at the beginning of the review, WWE pulls out the stops when travelling here and there are some excellent matches on this release.
Namely on Disc Two’s Smackdown is one of the best matches of 2012 when Randy Orton faces Alberto del Rio in a Falls Count Anywhere Match. It may also be of value to anyone who plans on buying the Survivor Series DVD which I am to review shortly as Vince McMahon pops up on Raw to change the main event of that Pay Per View.
At Six hours long and neatly encompassing an entire week of phenomenal action for the small price of £12.99 I honestly think this is worth a punt. I was at the Raw so I do feel a fondness but I wasn’t at Smackdown and I was eager to watch that back too. It really is a celebration of how great the British are at sporting events, the crowd is as important as the action and it makes the guys work harder when they feel appreciated. I always enjoy the Live in the UK sets but this stands as more than a souvenir, this is a compilation of a very successful wrestling tour and one that I think is worth another trip down memory lane. If you were there, you’ll buy it, if you weren’t, you should anyway. It is a lot of fun.