Re: Official DVD/Match/Show Discussion Thread
I know I'm a little late on my thoughts, but I ate way too much pizza and pop 'ems Sunday night, and was in no condition to share my thoughts. This review is based on both my live viewing and my immediate second review. I usually watch A WrestleMania three times in the first couple of months: live, downloaded the next day, and a month later when I get the DVD. This review is based solely on the first two viewings.
WHC: Daniel Bryan vs. Sheamus
I may not have mentioned it before, but I had a feeling this would happen. The match was too randomly paired, there was no buildup, and with so much time needed for the three main events, I knew they were going to cut somewhere, and it had to be here. Am I glad that the WHC is reduced to an afterthought, opening the ppv, and being contested in 18 seconds? No. When I got back into wrestling, the WHC matches were HHH/HBK/Benoit and HHH/Batista killing each other for 20+ minutes. The title is completely dead.
However, I am okay with Sheamus capitolizing on DB allowing himself to be distracted, getting a big win, and re-legitimzing the title. I mean, the belt looks great on him, he's a big, agile guy who could probably have some great main events, and this could be the start of the best WHC reign since Batista in late 2007. It got a good pop, and as someone else said, I could completely buy a rematch in which a pissed off DB really goes after Sheamus. The match was just like Mysterio/JBL at 25 and Chavo/Kane in that no one was paying to see it. Haha, the bigger guys always win.
** (out of 5)
Randy Orton vs. Kane
Kind of falls in line with Batista/Umaga for me: two big names who had nothing else to do, they had some solid exchanges, but the match just never took off. I don't mind the win, since Kane beating Orton at WM completely elevates him, while Orton is big enough that the loss won't hurt him.
IC Title: Cody Rhodes vs. Big Show
Reminded me a lot of Punk/Show from NOC '10: little guy heel bumping like crazy, taking the fight, getting some advantage, but being made short work of. Good for the time it got.
Not bad as far as 7-minute divas matches go. Kelly Kelly has gotten better in the ring, I appreciate the fact that Menounous "gets" in, loves the product, sells like crazy, and works with her opponents.
HIAC: Undertaker vs. Triple H
To me, like sequels, a lot HUGE rematches are rarely as good as the original. HBK/Angle II at Vengeance, HBK/UT at WM XXVI, Cena/Punk at SummerSlam, Angle/Guerrero at SS, for example, were all far cries from the original. I loved UT/HHH at WM XXVII. I had no idea it would be so intense, so powerful, so compulsively rewatchable. Probably one of the fastest 30 minutes ever. I anticipated a rematch, but was very hesitant about if they could follow up.
Somehow, they did. Everything about this match was perfect. UT coming out with a cool costume, his haircut indicating just how much HHH's beating changed him, HBK feeling sorry for UT getting his ass kicked, UT putting the hell's gate on HBK for wanting to ring the bell, the SCM/Pedigree combo nearfall (almost as good as the tombstone last year), HHH's defiance at the end, and the moment UT, with HBK, helps up Triple H, and the three walk to the back together.
I agree that it didn't make the most out of the cell, but they did some stuff at the beginning, and I'm glad that for history's sake, this end of an era match took place inside HIAC. Doing "No Holds Barred" again would have been repetitive, so the name of the HIAC stip alone makes it worthwhile. Fantastic action, story, and finish. Maybe 1/4 not as amazing as the original, but at this point my favorite match of 2012.
Team Teddy vs. Team Johnny
As far as random mult-man tag matches go at WM, this is probably the best. Everyone got in some good shots, the pace didn't let up, the triple-threat splash outside was great, Santino almost getting the win was a nice nearfall, and this somewhat restore's Miz's luster by getting the big win for the team at WM. A lot of fun, short and sweet. Would have liked a spinarooni, though, unless I missed it.
WWE Title: CM Punk vs. Chris Jericho
I'm of two minds about the random stip change. Ace and Punk had a pre-existing feud, Ace had just won a lot of power and was clearly in the mood to abuse, Jericho was trying to instigate Punk by brining up his family, so trying to get Punk to go nuts worked with both feuds.
Problem is, none of this should have happened. The feud between Jericho and Punk disolved into a very cliched "your family sucks" bs, which made the feud contrived and falsely personal, when it should have really focued on "who's the best"? A great face/heel competition.
So for the match to start with some gimmicky storyline bullshit just killed the first few minutes. Worse, nothing about that came up again towards the end of the match, like it was completely abandoned. You have CM Punk and Chris Jericho, let them fucking wrestle. We already have a storyline match in Rock/Cena, a hardcore match in HHH/UT, let this be the pure wrestling match. They didn't add some gimmick a minute before HBK/Cena, Guerrero/Angle, or Angle/Lesnar. Just let them wrestle.
Luckily, though, they did abandom the bs, and had a very suspensful exchange of submissions, which luckily had the match ending on a high note. A better second half made up for the first, shame they couldn't just let it be and let them have a whole 20 minutes of you know, wrestling.
The Rock vs. John Cena
No one match could live up to a year of hype, especially one with a guy who hasn't had a singles match in 9 years and somehow not completely capable of carrying a match for 30 minutes.
The staredown felt quiet, the feeling out process was bland, the match was just very, very conventional. I knew we were in trouble when Cena went for that first bear-hug. It just looked like the two of them needed to lie down. I would have had no problem with this being 10-15 minutes of feeling out, and then another 5-10 minutes of finisher fest. It worked for Cena/Batista, Cena/HHH, and Cena/Orton, so why not here. I think on paper the layout was fine, but there was just some awkward transitions.
Rock should not have been going for 30 minutes, though I do understand WWE's attempt to give fans their money's worth. As far as payoffs go, at least it's better than Sting/Hogan at Starrcade '97, but it's obviously not as good as Punk/Cena MITB.
The fact that it ended just as soon as it started getting good was very TNA for me. If you're going to go for 30 minutes, you need to be changing gears about every 5-10 minutes. This switched maybe once, never left it, and ended. It's not a bad match, but it's not worth 12 MONTHS of hype.
It's a solid dream match, I'm glad it happened. My biggest bias is against Rock winning. While I understand that Rock still has a wrestling career ahead of him, is only 39, and perhaps Cena will be put over in the rematch, his coming back, getting the better of Cena at WM 27, Survivor Series, and now 28 makes it looks more and more like a celebrity inclusion than an actual competitor.
I get Cena acting cocky costing him, but Rock winning the main event of WM 2012 is just weird form. WM used to be a statement about the future of the company. Look at the main events of III, VI, X, XII, 13, XIV, 16, XIX, 21, 22. Cena not turning heel and now feuding with Lesnar is just a distraction. A great distraction, but a distraction.
I also found it laughably hypocritical that they WERE plugging GI Joe throughout the fucking show. So movie star comes back, gets better of top guy on two occassions, pins him in main event of WM (his second match in eight years), they plug his movie, and he disappears.
Say what you will about Hogan, and I know he was a lot older at this point in his career, but when he came back in 2002, he put over Rock, Undertaker, Triple H, Angle, and Lesnar, and they ALL looked better for it.
This hasn't elevated Cena. It hasn't hurt him, but it hasn't help
Ranting aside, a solid match burdended only by its length of hype.
Hard to tell where this ranks with WMs. My most recent favorite remains XXIV, the last great WM. I think the problem with this show was that there was nothing in between. It was all main events and bullshit. If you weren't Rock/Cena or UT/HHH, you were Big Show/Rhodes and DB/Sheamus. I like a deep card at WM, like 26, 22, etc.
The whole show I'd give a *** (out of 5)
Favorite Matches of All Time
1. Triple-Threat Match for the World Heavyweight Championship: Triple H vs. Shawn Michaels vs. Chris Benoit - WrestleMania XX
2. Career Threatening Match: Shawn Michaels vs. Ric Flair - WrestleMania XXIV
3. WWE Championship: John Cena vs. CM Punk - Money in the Bank 2011
4. No Holds Barred Match: The Undertaker vs. Triple H - WrestleMania XXVII
5. WWF Championship: Hulk Hogan vs. The Ultimate Warrior - WrestleMania VI
Last edited by BGLWrestlingGod; 04-03-2012 at 02:27 PM.