DVD Review: WWE Live In The UK: April 2011

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Image Source: Amazon

Written By: Mark Armstrong

Running Time: 282 Minutes
Certificate: 12
Number Of Discs: 2
Studio: Clear Vision Ltd/Silver Vision
Released: July 18 2011

WWE had regained some of its edge by April 2011, largely due to the return of The Rock and the associated relaxing of certain aspects of the PG era. This resulted in Raw seeming a bit more unpredictable in the aftermath of WrestleMania XXVII, evidenced in the opening segments here which see R-Truth unexpectedly turn heel on John Morrison in a surprisingly aggressive manner. Truth even smokes a cigarette and blows the smoke into Morrison’s face, and as UK residents will be aware, smoking is banned inside public places nowadays, so this was an eye-opener (in saying that, WWE probably just didn’t realise the UK laws on smoking; perhaps they did when this part of the segment was originally cut from UK replays on Raw).

Otherwise, the show isn’t that memorable. A main event between Randy Orton and CM Punk is superior to anything which took place on either of the UK Raw episodes from 2010, and there’s a painful-to-watch segment involving the now-unbearable Michael Cole, Jack Swagger, Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler and The Queen (it isn’t hard to deduce that it wasn’t really Queen Elizabeth II). Otherwise, Raw had only slightly improved from its state of affairs five months earlier, resulting in a show that’s only slightly above average.

NXT was now in its fifth “Redemption” season, and whilst the burial commentary was gone, the show was now completely inconsequential and serves so little purpose that it’s barely worth me recapping it. Likewise Superstars which is watchable, but pretty uneventful. SmackDown has a hit-and-miss segment based around Edge’s real-life retirement hosted by Alberto Del Rio and featuring cameos by Edge and Christian, as well as two title matches (one of which has a title change). There’s also a good opener between Rey Mysterio and the no-longer-Dashing Cody Rhodes to further their feud. Annoyingly, every single show has an extended recap of the R-Truth heel turn; once would have been plenty. The bonus material here consists of Edge vs. Christian in a Steel Cage match for the IC Title from Rebellion 2001, which is fun to watch.

These tapings were held at a weird time; it was after The Rock had returned and after the official challenge had been made for the Rock-John Cena match for WrestleMania XXVIII, but before CM Punk cut that “pipe bomb” promo and even before the great Randy Orton-Christian rivalry took over SmackDown. It felt like WWE was in transition mode (which might be true, considering that the 2011 Draft would take place the following week), resulting in tapings that were eventful, but ultimately didn’t achieve much outside of Truth’s heel turn. It’s an okay DVD, but certainly not the best of the Live In The UK releases.

Overall Rating: 6.5/10 – Okay