Brock Lesnar : Here Comes the Pain (Collector's Edition)
Disc One : Documentary
I suck at reviewing documentaries, I'm not going to try and hide that. For this review I'm going to focus more on the matches (why else would you buy this?) , but I'll give some quick hit thoughts on the documentary because well.... That's what I do. The documentary was , in short, DATED. If you watched this a few years ago, you'd have to adore it because of the simplistic style and concise points. Nothing overly complicated here, has the early mix of kayfabe-non kayfabe input from various personalities, and Brock is ALWAYS an enigma to watch on the small screen, so you get what you want here if you're a Brock fan.
However, there's NO new material here giving insight into Brock's UFC/NFL career, as well as his WWE return in 2012, so for that I can't give it a great rating. It doesn't FAIL by any means, but honestly this is what it is, and you know what you're getting yourself into when you buy this. The Disc one extras half make-up for the documentary with Lesnar's debut and re-debut in 2012 featured. The hardcore Brock fan will love this disc for sure as I did, but the casual fan will probably look at this disc and say "LOLZ DAT DOCUMENTARY IS OLD. 3/10". I like it, but that's probably because BROCK is probably in my top 4 all time favorites ever.
6/10 (INCLUDING EXTRAS)
Disc Two : Matches
Brock Lesnar Vs. Leviathan (OVW, 7/28/01)
OMGZ IT'Z BORK VS TISTA! Just for that fact alone makes this match a novelty, but there is literally no reason for this match to be on the DVD except for novelty alone. These two have some pretty bad attempts at chain wrestling throughout and you can clearly tell that Lesnar was 8657654674X ahead of Big Dave at this point in his career. The power sequences were pretty good at this one, but Batista wasn't fluid enough in the ring at this point to sustain a really good match, even out of a green but highly athletic Lesnar. What you'd probably expect from two rookies at this point. Not horrible by any means, but definitely not the best.
The Minnesota Stretching Crew Vs. Prototype & Rico Constantino (OVW, 11/10/01)
Benja-Brock was actually a pretty awesome team, wish they had more work together in the E' because they seemed to really click in this one. To see Cena teaming with a guy like Rico makes me LOL knowing what paths both careers would take in the future. This gets pretty exciting when Bork and Shelton break out their crazy double team moves while Cena and Rico take it like two dollar whores. Not an overly long match at all, but for a dark match this was pretty solid. You could tell that Benjamin and Brock were getting better and that they worked pretty well together. Another "it is what it is" match however, but it was nice to see the MSC on a DVD set. FUN.
Brock Lesnar Vs. Jeff Hardy (Backlash, 4/21/02)
Jeff Hardy gets squashed ? OH. FUCK. YES. I love this match simply because I'm a mark for anything anti-Hardy, but I'll give Jeff credit for this ; He can make monsters look even more monstrous better than anybody else in the business save for somebody like Rey (see Great American Bash 2007 against Umaga). Hardy does a great job of selling just how much of a beast Lesnar is to the crowd, which they instantly buy. Lesnar's offense is pretty simple here, but every move he does carries more aggression than the average worker, making this match a must see. Jeff gets SOME offense in here to not completely destroy his career, but at the end of the day this is one of my favorite squashes ever due to who's involved and how awesome it truly is. SQUASH 101 baby, this is how it should be done. The most AWSUMEZZZTTT match eva.
Brock Lesnar Vs. Rob Van Dam (King of the Ring, 6/23/02)
This was the first Lesnar match that I ever saw I do believe, so I hold it in high regard even for nostalgia purposes. I also believe that this AGAIN is the prototypical short match between a veteran and a guy you're trying to get over but not overexpose. The styles clash here was a thing of beauty, as Van Dam has some of the most unorthodox offense you'll ever see in a Wrestling ring, while Lesnar's hybrid of power and mat wrestling to keep Van Dam grounded is excellent. They kind of stay in "protect" mode the entire time while never shifting to that final gear, but boy did this get Lesnar over HUGE. King of the Ring 2002 was a HORRIBLE PPV, but this was a shining light in a sea of terrible matches. Not GREAT by any means, but good enough and fun enough to sustain a decent rating
Brock Lesnar & The Undertaker Vs. Rob Van Dam & Ric Flair (Raw, 7/15/02)
This match can be summed up in one word : FUN. Just look at who you have in this match and you'll see exactly how this is an example of just a pure fun TV match with some great action. You have Flair and Van Dam selling for two big time heels, with the heels just pummeling them over and over again. Flair's performance in this is great, especially his interactions with Lesnar as Lesnar no-sells Flair's chops better than anybody in the business ever has (including STING). The Undertaker is great in this as well (He's the king of FUN matches IMO afterall) , just destroying Van Dam and Flair to the point that when they finally get some offense in, the fans are going crazy and it actually means something. If you're a fan of either guy in this match, or you just wanna see a good TV match, check this one out
Brock Lesnar Vs. Hulk Hogan (SmackDown, 8/8/02)
This is "how to book a monster 101" down to a tee. This was Hogan's definite best job of putting anybody over, as Lesnar basically went from new monster to "HOLY SHIT THIS GUY COULD BE THE FACE OF THE COMPANY" in about one night. The breakdown of how this match works is a piece of art, as all the pieces fit together so perfectly to make this awesome. For instance ; This is one of Heyman's best managerial performances, screaming to Lesnar that "HE'S DIFFERENT! HE'S HULK HOGAN" , REEEEAAALLLYYY selling how great Hogan has been over the years, so to see Lesnar crank that bearhug on Hogan is just insane to see and leaves you saying "oh my god". It's also like Hogan saved all of his athletic prowess that he had left for this one match, as he has a pretty damn great counter of the F-5 that's awesome in it's own right. The 3 punches, big boot and leg drop doesn't work? Hogan doubles it up. Just smart thinking and great booking like that tells a great story, and is easily Lesnar's "coming out party" as a storyteller, and one of Hogan's best matches of the decade.
Brock Lesnar Vs. The Rock (SummerSlam, 8/25/02)
This match is Wrestling's version of CRANK, with some good psychology thrown in to make it look absolutely awesome. Right from the get go this match is all about adrenaline, with Rocky running to the ring only to get manhandled by the monster Lesnar. These two just go back and forth the entire time, with the pacing being some of the greatest I've seen in any match... EVER. I'd actually go out on a limb and say this is a top 5 Rock performance, as he's really one of the only people in Wrestling history who can keep up with Lesnar's athleticism, and that's what this match really is, an athletic showcase with two HUGE men showing how fluidly they can move in the ring. The kip-up spot was pretty great, as well as the awesome end sequence. We all knew Brock was going over here, but that didn't damper the match at all for me, as these two kept me emotionally invested in the match and I hope we get a highly athletic rematch in the near future. A big time main event between two all-time greats that actually delivers in every department imaginable. What more could you really ask for ? I have it as top 5-6 SS main event currently, and Lesnar's first classic.
Brock Lesnar Vs. Randy Orton (SmackDown, 9/5/02)
Another top-notch quality squash from the monster Lesnar here. Now that he has the credibility, he can afford to give the young Orton a little offense here to spark his career a little bit. Lesnar is the king of the squash, and this very entertaining match is no exception. Not much to say about this one at all, just a short but fun squash match that you can watch at any time during the day and just enjoy.
Brock Lesnar Vs. The Undertaker (Unforgiven, 9/22/02)
These two were made for each other in the ring. Besides Shawn Michaels, I truly do believe that Brock Lesnar meshes with Taker better than anybody else in WWE history. This is another one of those matches that goes up in value 2X when you see the amazing pre-match video packages (all of Lesnar's big time video packages are included in the documentary and it's fucking awesome), but what we have here is a classic bout with some fantastic psychology from both men. The rib work in this is actually excellent, as are the takedowns and very MMA-esque action between the two. Alot of people actually have a problem with this match and I really don't know why, is it the ending ? Because the ending is essentially Ground Zero PT. II , except I believe this match is better than the GZ 97 match by a fair margin. The storytelling and ESPECIALLY the in-ring psychology is just NAILED here and it's the perfect set-up to Hell in a Cell. A completely underrated match in the careers of both Lesnar and Taker
Brock Lesnar Vs. The Undertaker (No Mercy, 10/20/02)
(ripped from a HUGE individual match review for my HIAC project) This is a heavily debated match amongst reviewers for a certain reason, but I'll get into that later. I loved the story heading into this match as Brock at this point is an unstoppable monster, but couldn't manage to knock off the Undertaker in a great match at Unforgiven. In retaliation Brock broke the Undertakers hand twice, so this cell match was made. Taker is wearing a cast here and is obviously allowed to use it as a weapon, so that adds an interesting dynamic to the match. When this begins we get a beautiful MMA style exchange between these two, and then Taker just begins HAMMERING (and I mean very very hard) Brock with the cast with some very stiff shots. The facial expressions and body language in this match is just awesome (as well as Heyman's screams. Brock begins to just eye the cast, and starts to just work the hand and arm of Undertaker to perfection, even tying his arm to the cell and nailing the broken hand with a chair several times (btw, Heyman's blade job is INSANE, crazy that it isn't even the biggest bladejob of the night). The intensity is just off the charts here, with Heyman screaming in Undertaker's ear "YOU'RE GONNA DIE". Brock then proceeds to rip the cast off, finally finding an opening to take advantage of.
Now here's where many people find to be the fatal flaw with this match; Undertaker's selling of the broken hand. Even though his hand has been worked on and broken, Undertaker still uses his hand for strikes and even a chokeslam at one point. People fucking hate this idea, and believe that since Taker's hand is broken, he should act like it. Here's the problem with that argument: this match is so full of intensity and hatred, it's understandable if adrenaline kicks in and a person eventually hits a "threshold" for their pain and has the ability to withstand any further damage to a certain area of the body. Another reason why this criticism sucks..He's the UNDERTAKER! He gets more or less buried alive and set on fire all the time, and I know this is the Biker Undertaker, but it's still the same guy...Anyways as you can tell I have no problem with Taker's selling at all, and I actually believe that it adds to the match instead of taking away from it. This is just turning into an all out war here, with Taker getting nailed with the steps and breaking out one of the absolute SICKEST BLADE JOBS that I have ever seen. I mean, his face is almost like a faucet here.
This is so back and forth, an interesting dynamic that sets it apart from another all time great cell match (the original). Taker just won't give up, broken hand and busted face aside, and I believe that gives us a new dynamic to the story... Even though Undertaker is past the point of feeling pain, Brock is STILL getting the best of him, and that is putting him over than anyone else ever could. We get a last ride and a fucking FANTASTIC tombstone reversal into an F-5 to end this. This match made Brock Lesnar, I don't care what anybody says, after this match Brock Lesnar was considered the top dog in the WWE. This had amazing intensity, fantastic back and forth action, diverse offense and great psychology, not to mention an amazing ending with some great near falls. An all-time classic in every sense of the word, and one of the biggest wars to take place inside the squared circle.
Brock Lesnar Vs. Team Angle (SmackDown, 2/27/03)
Technical prowess bitch! This match seems unconventional (how many handicap matches are actually worth watching?) , but when you actually sit down and watch it, it features some pretty fucking great mat exchanges between some really great technical wrestlers. You can see Benjamin and Lesnar's great chemistry in this one (as I bang my head off the closet door wondering why these two never had a 20 minute long match) , as we get a series of amateur moves with a nice Kurt story thrown in on the side. Just a good little TV match with some decent wrestling, you can't really complain with this, can you?
DISC RATING : 8/10
Disc Three : Matches
Brock Lesnar Vs. Kurt Angle (WrestleMania XIX, 3/30/03)
Earlier I said that The Rock was one of the only athletes who could hang with Lesnar in the ring. The number one guy, however is Kurt Angle (who is the superior mat wrestler of the two, mind you). These two have a series of matches that is almost universally adored, and this is easily the most high profile of all of them (it IS the main event to the greatest PPV of all time, that should tell you everything you need to know). The mat exchanges in this match and the mat wrestling that takes place is absolutely drool worthy, and while this isn't the refined mat-classic like Benoit-Angle from earlier in the year, it plays well to the whole "Lesnar is a beast but he finally meets a guy who can out wrestle him" story. Angle should get a ton of credit for this one, as he was basically HALF DEAD and falling apart heading into the match. Brock throws him around quite a bit as we get some really beautiful suplexes and alot of that old school intensity that we used to see in the early 80s.
This was an extremely worthy Wrestlemania main event and an all time classic, which is AMAZING considering the absolute fail that was Lesnar's attempted shooting star press (that nearly killed HIM as well). The near falls and finisher fest towards the end was great, the slow mat based build was great, and it showed that world that WRESTLING can sell and triumph at the end of the biggest show of them all. IMO it's in the middle of the pack of their 3 big notable matches, but since they're all classics I can't really complain. Lesnar's amazing first year comes full circle against a man who put on one of the most brave performances in wrestling history in Kurt Angle.
Brock Lesnar Vs. John Cena (Backlash, 4/27/03)
This match is extremely notable due to it being John Cena's first high profile match basically EVER, and with who else ? The man who would work in one of the best WWE matches EVER with Cena 9 years in the future. I've heard rumors about this match explaining why it's so stiff (and it IS, believe me) , basically stating that Lesnar never liked Cena or some bullshit like that. It's totally believeable, as both men take a fucking POUNDING here. I love the Lesnar-Cena chemistry as they're both big strong athletic motherfuckers who can just hit each other with everything they have and get the crowd crazy.
The psychology is pretty damn solid. Lesnar has a bandage covering his forehead, so what does Cena do ? HE ATTACKS THE FOREHEAD, splitting Lesnar wide fucking open. That is how you do it my friends. The action is slow and plodding at points with no real substance involved, but besides those few sequences, this is ALL stiff, brutal gold that shows you what can happen when you take two young, hungry, athletic guys and put them in there for the biggest title in wrestling history. Fantastic match and the best in Cena's young career (until Vengeance of course
60-Minute Ironman Match: Brock Lesnar Vs. Kurt Angle (SmackDown, 9/18/03)
OH FUCK YES. I knew I was going to get to this match at some point and I was legitimately excited to do so. The layers that this match contains only serves as a reminder that when you mix great wrestling with great storytelling and wrap it all up with distinct characterization, psychology, and brilliant pacing, you have everything it takes to produce an all time classic match. Let;s just start by looking at Lesnar's game plan ; he can't outwrestle Angle, so he uses a chair to wear Angle down and gain an early advantage, although he puts himself down a fall in the process. Lesnar is spot on during this sequence with devious facial expressions that make me wonder how insane he truly is. Angle plays the worn down babyface role well here, as he can't put his wrestling skills to use while depleted against this MONSTER.
The rest of the match is basically Angle playing catchup against Lesnar, but it's done so in such a brilliantly laid out match that it would make Randy Savage proud. Lesnar uses his physical prowess to throw around Angle, while Angle tries his best not to get desperate and "weather the storm". It's not until Angle starts to feel the heat that he breaks out alot of his big time moves to get Lesnar down. There's some nonsensical Kurt stuff in here, like his top rope throw and his random moonsault, but that's literally the ONLY Kurt nonsense we get in this one, as this relies more on characterization and WRESTLING then anything else.
The ending sequence is one of the best ever with Lesnar BARELY hanging on and taking the title due to his extremely genius but devious gameplan. I'm convinced that this is the best Ironman match ever, as while Rocky-HHH was more of a highly flashy classic that had a ton of style and substance, this one is ALL substance with bits of style mashed in. A fitting end to one of wrestling's classic trilogies, and the best Lesnar-Angle match IMO. Best Ironman Match Ever.
Brock Lesnar Vs. Rey Mysterio (SmackDown, 12/11/03)
Let's see, the best monster heel in WWE history against the best "babyface in peril" the WWE has ever seen..... Yeah I'd say this match is PRETTY GOOD. Lesnar is such a dick in this match making fun of Rey's shortcomings, with Lesnar taking his mind off the match and fucking up, allowing Rey to gain the advantage with his quick style. This match has a very simple story ; if Lesnar catches Rey, he'll fucking RIP HIM LIMB FROM LIMB. You actually FEAR for Rey's life in this one knowing what Lesnar will do to him if Rey's caught. However, the sadistic motherfucker in all of us wants Rey to be caught just to see what resounding move he will be caught in. The Payoff is magnificent, with one of the craziest powerbombs you'll ever see, coupled with a nice mini-story of Lesnar "tapping out" that you'll enjoy. AMAZING by TV standards, and another match in the history of Rey and Lesnar that's AWESOME. A PPV match between these two would be ****+ easily IMO.
Brock Lesnar Vs. Big Show (SmackDown, 6/12/03)
Show and Lesnar have this strange chemistry that I can't really explain (their best match being the JD 03 classic of course) , but this match is no exception to that rule, as while it lasts the match is downright awesome. These two just toss each other around like two brothers for the duration of the match, and we end off with perhaps the most memorable ending to a match EVER. Remembered for the ending obviously, but even though this was a weaker Show-Lesnar match, it was fun as fuck while it lasted, and gets extra points for the bad ass ending. ANOTHER awesome Lesnar TV match (how many of these does the guy have?)
Brock Lesnar Vs. Goldberg (WrestleMania XX, 3/14/04)
AH, THIS MATCH! I hate when people give this match a DUD, because it's truly one of the more entertainingly bad matches out there. The fans honestly don't give this match a chance at all, which I prefer to be honest, because I'd rather have a highly entertaining match to watch like this, than perhaps a average ** 1/4 encounter that these two probably would have had on any given day. Easily Lesnar's worst match, but I can't say too much about this that hasn't already been said. I LOVE THIS MATCH
as it's almost like HHH-Steiner for me. Rather entertaining and bad than dull, boring , and forgettable. STARZ for entertainment.
DISC THREE RATING : 8/10
This is probably the most FUN I've had with a DVD in quite some time, as I'm a huge Lesnar mark and I adore practically everything he does. This DVD would be up there for me with HHH : King of Kings and the Macho Madness DVD as a personal favorite of mine. I gave the disc one 6/10 , but when you're a big Lesnar fan it's more or less like 8/10 so I don't really care about the rating to that very much.
The most important aspect of this DVD is the match listing on Discs 2 and 3. In here we get some really ENTERTAINING matches, coupled with some all time great matches that really showcase how Lesnar could basically get an entertaining match out of anyone. This just makes me really excited to purchase PLATT's Lesnar comp , because I NEED to see every Lesnar match damnit. Personal preference I would give the DVD 9/10 , but I'm trying to be unbiased here so let me throw this out there. HOPEFULLY THIS WAS ENJOYABLE DAMNIT ! On to the Rey Mysterio/Shawn Michaels SC :hhh