DVD Review: The Undertaker: He Buries Them Alive – WWE

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Written By: Mark Armstrong

Running Time: 60 Minutes
Certificate: E
Number Of Discs: 1
Studio: Clear Vision Ltd/Silver Vision
Released: April 12 2004

This DVD is a re-release of the original mid-1990s video (yes, video), and was brought out once again to capitalise on the return of the original Undertaker character at WrestleMania XX. All five bouts on this one-hour feature were held in 1994, a year which saw the initial revamp of his persona upon his return from a long absence at SummerSlam, by which point the gimmick had already reached legendary status. His ring work, however, was still years away from truly impressing the WWF fan base. Hence, don’t expect to see classic matches here.

From a storyline standpoint, the biggest match here is The Undertaker vs. The Undertaker from that same SummerSlam. The plot leading into this was pretty fun, at least by 1994 standards, but the match isn’t exactly a five-star bout, although it’s not as bad as some people say it is. Taker vs. Kwang is a rare DVD appearance for the masked warrior, who was played by the future Savio Vega.

The Phenom faces Jim Neidhart in a scrap which is designed to promote his Casket match with Yokozuna at Survivor Series 1994, the closing minutes of which we get here. (By the way, despite the title of the release, there are no Buried Alive matches here; that stipulation didn’t arrive until 1996.) Bizarrely, though, the Anvil bout is shown after the Yoko match, which makes no sense in terms of chronology. Finally, it’s Undertaker vs. Jerry Lawler under Casket rules, which also found its way onto the King’s DVD last year.

And that’s it. Even those who have criticised some of Undertaker’s recent WrestleMania encounters will have a new appreciation for those bouts after watching this compilation, as they realise just how different the Dead Man’s matches were back in the “New Generation”.

In fairness, though, this embodied the standard WWF action at the time, and those who attended shows back then were there to see the Undertaker character itself rather than to see him deliver stunning wrestling matches. For fans of the mid-1990s era WWF, and of course Undertaker supporters, this budget release is a decent addition to your DVD collection. Otherwise, only watch this compilation if you can maintain low expectations.

Overall Rating: 4.5/10 – Below Average