06th Feb2015

‘WWE Best of Raw and SmackDown 2014’ DVD Review

by Nicky Johnson


Another year over in the WWE Universe (sick of that phrase yet?), which means another triple disc DVD set compiling the best moments of Raw and SmackDown from the last year, all of which you watch in full again on the WWE Network for only £9.99 a month (how about that one?). From Occupy Raw to Randy Orton unceremoniously abandoning The Authority and more, there’s over 8 hours of promos and matches from the longest running TV shows in America.

Disc 1 covers just past the Elimination Chamber PPV event and some of the build up to WrestleMania, like the Undertake-Brock Lesnar contract signing and Batista’s (awful) heel promo. Disc 2 takes us from the classic Occupy Raw bit with Daniel Bryan and the Yes Movement swarming the ring to demand a match between Bryan and Triple H at WrestleMania, up until just past Payback and the now infamous breakup of the Shield at the hands of Seth Rollins and The Authority. Finally, Disc 3 starts with Rollins’ post breakup promo until after Survivor Series and a 6 man tag team between Cena, Ryback, and Dolph Ziggler vs Kane, Rollins, and Luke Harper after The Authority had been disbanded.

Personally, I would’ve liked to have seen some other parts shown, for example the Brock Lesnar/Paul Heyman promo after beating the Undertaker at WrestleMania was infinitely better and more important that after SummerSlam and suplexing John Cena 16 times. Also, no match involving the aging and decrepit New Age Outlaws deserves to be on a Best of DVD, even if that match is again the rising stars that are Jimmy and Jey Uso.

On the flip side, the Occupy Raw bit is genuinely one of the best segments in the last few years. We also get to relieve Paige’s Raw debut, taking the Divas Championship from AJ, albeit with a slightly botched ending, the return of one of the most successful and definitive factions of all time, Evolution, and the fantastic program between John Cena against Bray Wyatt and his family. Apart from having the single best entrance anyone has had in years, this elevated Wyatt to the level of super heel and is worth half a disc on its own.

If you’re a fan, which would be the only reason you’re reading this if we’re honest, and you don’t have access to the WWE Network, available in the UK now for only £9.99 per month, this is a pretty good summary of the company’s TV storylines, where they went right (breaking up The Shield, letting Paul Heyman on the mic as much as possible) and where they went wrong (screwing around with Daniel Bryan, thinking we care about little people wrestling matches) over the year. For £21.50 on Amazon, it’s not a bad price either, making it affordable for collectors and fans alike.

****½  4.5/5

WWE Best of Raw and SmackDown 2014 is released on DVD on February 9th.

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