Running Time: 349 Minutes
Number Of Discs: 2
Studio: Fremantle Home Entertainment
Released: June 10 2019
(Thanks to Fetch Publicity for arranging this review.)
The newest WWE DVD, and its third release in as many weeks, focuses on two of the most important female performers of all-time, Trish Stratus and Lita. The two “besties” receive a disc apiece to focus on key matches, talking head comments and notable segments from their careers. The first disc is dedicated to Trish, and the second disc belongs to Lita.
To open the DVD, we get a match from the fondly-remembered weekend show Metal, as Trish accompanies Albert when he faces Crash Holly. Stratus started off as a manager, but she soon entered the ring to compete against … Lita, and they meet her in a Bra & Panties match from October 2000. For the next year or so, bouts of this nature were the main basis for matches involving Trish (it was the Attitude Era, after all), but the next match on this DVD, a Six-Pack Challenge from Survivor Series 2001, proves pivotal. Not only does Trish win her first Women’s Championship, but it marked the slow beginning of the company moving away from underwear-focused matches towards serious bouts involving the women, which allowed the division as a whole to become far more credible.
Trish makes her official in-ring debut at WrestleMania against Jazz and Lita, before regaining her Women’s Title from Molly Holly in a hidden gem of sorts from Unforgiven 2002. Then, we get another title win, and one of Trish’s better matches, against Jazz and Victoria at WrestleMania XIX. The DVD then switches to Trish’s heel persona, which includes a two-on-one match alongside Christian against Chris Jericho from Backlash 2004, and a bout against Lita from New Year’s Revolution 2005, which is short due to an injury suffered by Lita. This began a long title reign that only ended at the hands of Mickie James at WrestleMania 22 in one of the best bouts on the set. Trish retired in 2006, with her final bouts against James and Lita (the latter at Unforgiven 2006 in her hometown of Toronto) featured here. Stratus’ Hall Of Fame speech from 2013, and a ten-woman match from Raw last October, ends the first disc.
As for Lita, she showed up in WWE a little earlier than Trish. She also started off with managerial duties, as she stands behind Essa Rios while he dethrones Gillberg as Light Heavyweight Champion on Heat. Her first key match was a six-person intergender bout alongside The Hardyz against T&A and Trish at Fully Loaded 2000, followed by her first TV main event, one that has been forgotten about in terms of historic significance. She teams with The Rock (who was red-hot at this point) against Trish and Triple H (who was also performing at his peak) in a mixed tag bout. But a few weeks later, we had the first all-women’s match to headline Raw as Lita beats Stephanie McMahon to win her first Women’s Champion (okay, The Rock was the referee, but the combatants were female).
Partially due to a long injury lay-off, it would be more than four years before Lita regained the Women’s crown. Her first match back from her time on the shelf is next, as she teams with Trish against Molly and Gail Kim at Unforgiven 2003. The first all-women’s Cage match in WWE history against Victoria on Raw, and her unusual on-screen wedding with Kane, are followed by what was arguably her biggest moment, as she finally recaptures the Women’s Title from Trish in their famous Raw main event in December 2004. She would win the gold again from Mickie James at Cyber Sunday 2006, the next bout on the DVD, before retiring not long afterwards. A quick cameo win over Heath Slater at Raw 1000 is included, as is her own Hall Of Fame induction in 2014. Lita revealing the new generation Women’s Title prior to WrestleMania 32, and the tag bout which sees her and Trish defeat Mickie and Alicia Fox at Evolution closes the second disc, and the DVD as a whole.
All of the biggest matches and moments in the careers of both legendary females are here, along with their respective HOF speeches in a nice touch. No doubt, the in-ring standards for WWE’s women are far higher than they were in the early-to-mid 2000s, but these two really were trailblazers, and served as the female icons of their era. To that end, longtime fans – and anyone who really does want to see who paved the way for Charlotte, Becky Lynch and friends – should be very satisfied with this twin-disc set.
Overall Rating: 8/10 – Very Good