Sunday, 19 June 2016

WWE Live In The UK: November 2013

Image Source: Amazon
Written By: Mark Armstrong

Running Time: 278 Minutes
Certificate: 15
Number Of Discs: 2
Studio: Fremantle Home Entertainment
Released: February 3 2014

The biggest change to WWE television prior to the November 2013 TV tapings in the UK was the formation of The Authority, with Triple H and Stephanie McMahon being the heel owners with Randy Orton as their personally chosen heel WWE Champion. Therefore, the Manchester tapings take an immediate hit when we discover that The Authority aren't present. Orton is, though, as is Kane (the recently-appointed Director Of Operations), and so are all of WWE's biggest full-time names.

Raw is decent; it's not as good as the London show was in April of the same year, but it has its moments such as the Randy Orton vs. Cody Rhodes/Goldust match (and the post-match angle involving Orton and Big Show), John Cena vs. Jack Swagger/Antonio Cesaro (you may notice a theme here) with a post-match run-in between Cena and Alberto Del Rio, and in the best part of the tour, CM Punk and Daniel Bryan vs. The Shield, followed by a wild and unexpected brawl between The Shield and The Wyatt Family in a preview of their great 2014 matches. Overall, not a great show, but it did have a number of highlights.

Main Event is just okay, with the best match being AJ Lee vs. Natalya for the Divas Title, and Superstars is most notable for the fans heavily booing The Great Khali throughout an all-babyface six-man tag team bout. SmackDown by this point had officially become insignificant in the grand scheme of things, although it does have two decent tag matches (The Usos vs. The Wyatts and CM Punk/Daniel Bryan vs. RybAxel) and a mildly entertaining arm wrestling angle involving Cena and Del Rio. The bonus match here is Triple H vs. The Undertaker from InsurreXtion 2002 which doesn't quite meet expectations, partly due to the top rope snapping during the match. Funnily enough, the menus have the music from Main Event rather than Raw or SmackDown (and would do until the series ended, even after the show's theme changed), and on a related note, it was only when the packaging changed in late 2012 that the series stopped using logos inspired by the WrestleMania 23 emblem, which took place in 2007.

How to sum this one up, then? If you attended the tapings, like I did, you'll enjoy reliving these shows. But even if you didn't, there's enough quality material to keep you entertained, even if these shows are inferior on the whole to those held in London a few months beforehand.

Overall Rating: 7/10 - Respectable

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