09th Mar2014

‘Shawn Michaels: Mr WrestleMania’ Blu-ray Review

by Chris Cummings

SM_MR_WM_BD_2D

We are fast approaching the 30th annual WrestleMania event and it is the time of year when many wrestling fans look back on the famous event and revisit the moments that, for whatever reason, were memorable to them. Through the years there have been plenty of memorable moments at WrestleMania and dozens of wrestlers have carved themselves into the tree-bark of history with their performance on the grandest stage in professional wrestling. One of those wrestlers, of course, is the man who called himself “The Heartbreak Kid” and was labelled by fans and critics alike as “Mr WrestleMania”. That man is Shawn Michaels, and this DVD/Blu-ray package is about his legacy on WWE’s main stage.

Shawn Michaels made his WrestleMania debut as part of The Rockers tag team with Marty Jannetty to take on The Twin Towers in 1989 at the fifth annual show, and his last wrestling appearance at ‘Mania happened against The Undertaker in 2010 at WrestleMania XXVI. The matches that existed in-between the debut and retirement of “HBK” are presented here, except for one (Shawn vs. HHH vs. Benoit – WMXX) and show just how important a part of ‘Mania Shawn was. His matches often stole the show and his energy and athletic prowess provided the wrestling world with timeless moments that will be replayed as time goes on as examples of greatness.

The lack of the triple threat featuring HHH and Benoit isn’t a shocking thing but it is a bit of a shame, the match was very good and features a wonderful moment after the final bell, but after what happened with Benoit in his final days, it is obvious why WWE chose to release this set without the inclusion of that match-up.

The matches range from decent to spectacular and the matches with guys like The Undertaker, Chris Jericho, Kurt Angle and Ric Flair are truly excellent in different ways. The legendary battle between Shawn and Razor Ramon in a ladder match from WrestleMania X is here, and remains a classic, not to mention the hour-long iron man match between Shawn and Bret Hart from ‘Mania 12. Class.

Here is the match listing:

  • WrestleMania V – 2nd April 1989 – The Rockers vs. The Twin Towers
  • WrestleMania VI – 1st April 1990 – The Rockers vs. The Orient Express
  • WrestleMania VII – 24th March 1991 – The Rockers vs. Haku & The Barbarian
  • WrestleMania VIII – 5th April 1992 – Shawn Michaels vs. Tito Santana
  • WrestleMania IX – 4th April 1993 – Intercontinental Championship Match – Shawn Michaels vs. Tatanka
  • WrestleMania X – 20th March 1994 – Ladder Match for the I-C Championship – Shawn Michaels vs. Razor Ramon
  • WrestleMania XI – 2nd April 1995 – WWE Championship Match – Shawn Michaels vs. Diesel
  • WrestleMania XII – 31st March 1996 – Iron Man Match – Shawn Michaels vs. Bret ‘Hitman’ Hart
  • WrestleMania XIV – 29th March 1998 – WWE Championship Match – Shawn Michaels vs. Steve Austin
  • WrestleMania XIX – 30th March 2003 – Shawn Michaels vs. Chris Jericho
  • WrestleMania 21 – 3rd April 2005 – Shawn Michaels vs. Kurt Angle
  • WrestleMania 22 – 2nd April 2006 – No Holds Barred Match – Shawn Michaels vs. Mr. McMahon
  • WrestleMania 23 – 1st April 2007 – WWE Championship Match – Shawn Michaels vs. John Cena
  • WrestleMania XXIV – 30th March 2008 – Ric Flair’s Career on the Line – Shawn Michaels vs. Ric Flair
  • WrestleMania XXV – 5th April 2009 – Shawn Michaels vs. The Undertaker
  • WrestleMania XXVI – 28th March 2010 – Streak vs. Career Match – Shawn Michaels vs. The Undertaker

The matches look fantastic in HD quality and it is nice to see them laid out in order. Seeing Shawn grow as a performer and a person over the years is an interesting thing to see. There are a couple of dud matches here with Shawn against Diesel and his mediocre match against Tito Santana, but otherwise there is a pure quality to this set that is rarely seen in compilation packages from WWE.

The introductions and stories from Shawn in-between the matches are enjoyable and add something extra to the set. I’m glad they didn’t go the route the did with the Goldberg and Randy Savage sets which were merely compilations of matches with no introductions from the people involved. It is nice to see them mix the matches with a documentary about Shawn Michaels’s history as a performer as well as his views of certain moments he has experienced over his storied career. Watching Shawn as he views the landmark moments of his career in the opening of the set is fun and as the DVD continued it made me really miss seeing Shawn as an active wrestler, he was truly one of a kind.

The Blu-ray release comes with some extra stories from Shawn as well as some backstage clips of Shawn from chosen WrestleMania events. It is cool to see them adding a little more for blu-ray customers, a trend that seems to be ongoing these days with WWE releases.

Shawn Michaels: Mr WrestleMania is available for pre-order for release on 17th Match, 2014, through FreemantleMedia.

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