6 June 2019
This three disc DVD contains the full Wrestlemania 35 event. It also contains the RAW after Wrestlemania on the third disc. Some people might miss the Hall of Fame ceremony being included in Wrestlemania releases but I personally prefer a disc full of wrestling rather than speeches. Also for those lucky enough to get this early there's a bonus fourth disc that includes the NXT Takeover event from the night before.
Buddy Murphy vs. Tony Nese - This was the Cruiserweight Championship match that took place on the pre-show. With me, the cruiseweights are always fighting an uphill battle on pay-per-view. I don't watch their show so I'm not already invested in what happens. They overcame that though and put on a match that managed to pull me in. The action was fast paced and there were loads of impressive manoeuvres. There were some really good near-falls and striking exchanges as they built towards a strong and decisive finish. Fans of 205 Live might like this more than I did but I still thought it was a really good, entertaining match.
Wrestlemania Women's Battle Royal - This was one of the pre-show matches that are included as bonus features. It genuinely surprised me. As far as pre-show Battle Royals go this was definitely one of the better ones. It's hard to make Battle Royals that exciting but they did a great job here. There were some really good interactions in there. There was always something going on to keep it entertaining and I enjoyed every second of it. A really good Battle Royal.
The Revival vs. Curt Hawkins and Zack Ryder - Also from the pre-show, this was for the RAW Tag Team Championships. There was no build up to this match which was a shame. It was a really good tag team contest. The Revival were fantastic with their excellent teamwork as they tag in and out and isolate their opponents. There were some good near-falls as the match approached it's conclusion and the finish was very good too. It was a great match that shows WWE really should feature the Revival more.
Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal - This is the final of the pre-show matches. Unlike the women's Battle Royal this one didn't surprise me. For the most part it was standard Battle Royal action. There were a few memorable moments in there but nothing too special. The final three were made up of Braun Strowman and two random people. Maybe it would have been more enjoyable if I knew or cared about who these people were, but I just didn't. It's not unwatchable but it's just a generic Battle Royal with a poor final few.
Alexa Bliss kicks off the main show as she's the host for this years Wrestlemania. It was a good segment to open the show. It didn't overstay it's welcome which was good as this is already a pretty long show. She brings out Hulk Hogan which, my personal feelings for Hogan aside, was a fun moment.
Seth Rollins vs. Brock Lesnar - This was surprisingly the first match of the main show. Heyman came out to announce that if Brock wasn't going on last then he wasn't waiting around and so the match would be next. It was a very short match. Brock was dominant, throwing Seth around ringside and beating him down in the ring before Seth managed to make his comeback. As a match it was good but not great, it was far too short to be anything special wrestling-wise. As a moment though it was fantastic and a great way to kick off the show. The pay-off was exactly what it needed to be and they gave us a strong, decisive finish. A great start to the show.
AJ Styles vs. Randy Orton - This was a great back and forth match. They had a good pace, combing Orton's more methodical style with AJ's more exciting one. The action was entertaining from start to finish. There were some really good reversals and near-falls as the match built to a strong and decisive finish. Also I'm so glad they didn't just do the obvious finish of a springboard forearm into an RKO, I appreciated that. A great match.
The Usos vs. The Bar vs. Ricochet and Aleister Black vs. Shinsuke Nakamura and Rusev - This Fatal Four-Way Tag Match was for the Smackdown Tag Team Championships. It was another very good match. It had a really fast pace throughout with attacks coming from all angles. The action was really entertaining from start to finish with plenty of multi-man moments, counters, near-falls and last second saves. It all built to a good, strong finish. Really exciting tag team action here.
The Miz vs. Shane McMahon - This was a Falls Count Anywhere Match. It was a really fun match. Shane McMahon as a heel works so well because finally his arrogance that he thinks he belongs in the ring with full-time wrestlers works for him. They brawled all over the arena and took a lot of punishment. There were some good spots in there and they built up to a pretty good finish that worked well with their feud. Miz's dad got involved at one point and that was pretty entertaining. It was much more fun than I expected it to be.
Bayley and Sasha Banks vs. Nia Jax and Tamina vs. The IIconics vs. Beth Phoenix and Natalya - This Fatal Four-Way Tag Match was for the WWE Women's Tag Team Championships. It was a very good match. It was different from the previous four-way as it focused less on the exciting moves and more on good teamwork and tag team wrestling. The action was always good, it had a good amount of time and I enjoyed the finish. Sasha, Bayley and the IIconics are the main reasons that this was a very enjoyable match.
'The New' Daniel Bryan vs. Kofi Kingston - This was a WWE Championship match. They did a really good job making this match feel like a big deal. A couple of months earlier the idea of Kofi Kingston being in the WWE Title match at Wrestlemania would have felt ridiculous but he worked so hard to build to this match that I really wanted to see it, and it was a fantastic match. The action was so good as they wrestled back and forth. They were very familiar with one another so they had a load of reversals for each other's offence. There were some really good near-falls as the action built to a strong, clean and satisfying finish. Rowan got involved at one point but the New Day were there to counter him so it only added to the excitement. This was such a good match.
Samoa Joe vs. Rey Mysterio - This was for Joe's United States Championship. It was a really short match and I think that was for the best. These two could probably have a great match if given time but with Mysterio's injury and how long this show was I'm glad it went short. It made the winner look incredibly strong and we did get a clean, decisive result. Just like the opener it was too short to be called a good match but it was exactly what it needed to be.
Roman Reigns vs. Drew McIntyre - This was another match that was exactly what it needed to be. It wasn't meant to be a huge match, it was just Roman's first singles match after beating cancer. It was still a very good, back and forth match though. They fought for around ten minutes. It was never boring, it was an entertaining match with a strong, decisive finish. It wasn't particularly memorable as far as the action was concerned but it did it's job and I enjoyed watching it. Following this match we get a concert with Elias. Normally I hate this kind of stuff on pay-per-view but it led to John Cena returning as the Doctor of Thuganomics and it was a great moment.
Triple H vs. Batista - This was a No Holds Barred Match and if Triple H loses he would have to retire. It was a really entertaining fight. These two clearly had a problem with each other in this feud but I wasn't expecting the sadistic side of Triple H that we got here. He looked like he tried to break Batista's fingers with some tool and then went on to pull out his nose ring with pliers. It was over the top but in a good way, it made it feel different from anything else on the show. It was a slower match than others on the card but that wasn't necessarily a bad thing, it just sold the impact of the damage they were doing. It was a good, back and forth fight with some memorable moments and a good, strong finish.
Kurt Angle vs. Baron Corbin - This was the final wrestling match of Kurt Angle's career. A lot of people were upset at Corbin being Angle's final opponent but Angle wasn't in good enough condition to pull out a great match with a different opponent anyway. This was another match that was exactly what it needed to be. It was long enough to be a competitive match but short enough that it didn't harm Kurt. Kurt hit all his signature stuff including his top rope moonsault. The finish was clean and decisive. It might not have been the match Angle would have wanted for his final match but it was the best we could have hoped for from his performance. It was an enjoyable match overall.
Bobby Lashley vs. Finn Balor - This was for the Intercontinental Championship and Balor was in his demon persona. It was another match that delivered exactly what it needed to. It was a pretty short match, but that worked as it was very late in the show and I don't think anyone was looking forward to seeing Lashley fight a long match. Balor was dominant but Lashley got in just enough to make it competitive. It had a good finish and overall it was an entertaining match. The match was followed by a Wrestlemania dance break with Carmella and R-Truth, it was short enough to be harmless.
Ronda Rousey vs. Charlotte Flair vs. Becky Lynch - This was the main event of the show. Ronda was RAW Women's Champion, Charlotte was Smackdown Women's Champion and this match was 'winner take all'. There was a lot of pressure on these three women to put on a match that justified them being in the main event slot at Wrestlemania. They managed to deliver though as it was a fantastic match. The action was great from start to finish and each women brought something to the match to make it work. Ronda was dominant, Charlotte had her experience in these types of matches and Becky wanted to prove herself. There were some great near-falls as the match went on and some good drama around the various submission holds. The finish to the match felt a bit off. It gave us a decisive result but it looked like something went wrong. That was a shame because up until that finish it was pretty much a perfect main event. The finish hurt it a little bit but it was still a fantastic match overall.
RAW AFTER WRESTLEMANIA
The full RAW after Wrestlemania takes up the third disc. Along with the matches there were several promos such as Kofi Kingston and Seth Rollins agreeing to a 'winner take all' match for the main event, Baron Corbin bragging about his match with Kurt Angle and the debut of a white supremacist. Lacey Evans attacks Becky Lynch and Elias comes face to face with the Deadman. Overall it's fairly lacklustre as a RAW after Mania but I'm still happy it was included and there are some entertaining moments in there.
Curt Hawkins and Zack Ryder vs. The Revival - This Wrestlemania rematch was for the RAW Tag Team Championships. Hawkins and Ryder got more offence in than they did at Wrestlemania. Unfortunately most of the Revival's time on top took place during the commercial break which meant we missed out on some great tag team wrestling. There were some good near-falls as the match went on and a good finish. It wasn't as good as their Wrestlemania encounter, although it might have been if we saw what happened in the break. It was an entertaining match either way.
Bayley vs. Alexa Bliss - This was a good little back and forth match. The action was entertaining and both women were very aggressive in trying to beat their opponent. The finish was very good, it could have done with a bit more time to become a really good match but I enjoyed what they did in the short time they had.
Ricochet and Aleister Black vs. Bobby Roode and Chad Gable - This was a good back and forth tag team match. Ricochet and Black's offence was exciting as always and Roode and Gable worked well as a team to keep the match competitive, occasionally relying on underhanded tactics. It had a good amount of time for a RAW match and there were some good near-falls as the match went on. It all built to a great, satisfying finish. An enjoyable match.
Dean Ambrose vs. Bobby Lashley - This was advertised, and weirdly still is on the DVD packaging, as Dean Ambrose's final WWE match. He would go on to have another with The Shield on a special event dedicated to him. Anyway, the match doesn't really get started as they immediately start brawling around the arena. It's a decent brawl that ends fairly suddenly when one man goes through the announce table. It was enjoyable to watch but wasn't much of a match.
Finn Balor vs. Sami Zayn - This was for the Intercontinental Championship and was Zayn's return to RAW. It was a very good back and forth match. The action was strong as they wrestled back and forth. There were some good counters and reversals and a few good near-falls. It all built to a clean and decisive finish. They did enough to make it a good match but held enough back that there's so much more they could do if they got to have a rematch at a later date. Sami's post match promo was great too.
Kofi Kingston vs. Seth Rollins - This was a 'Winner Take All' Match with the WWE and Universal Championships on the line. It was looking to be a really good match. They fought back and forth with a fast pace and entertaining action. It was interrupted though so we didn't get a satisfying finish. I'm glad we didn't end up with one man holding all the titles but it was a disappointing end to a main event match.
Kofi Kingston and Seth Rollins vs. The Bar - As the last match was ruined this becomes our new main event. It was a very good, back and forth tag match. Both teams worked together really well and there was a load of entertaining action. It was a bit short for a main event but not too short. It had a good, clean finish and was an overall enjoyable match. A good way to end the show although it did feel disappointing that we didn't get a surprise to end the show as we normally do on the RAW after Wrestlemania.
NXT TAKEOVER NEW YORK
If you're lucky enough to get this DVD early then you may get a fourth disc that contains the NXT event from Wrestlemania weekend. I'd definitely aim to get that version of the DVD as it's a great event.
War Raiders vs. Ricochet and Aleister Black - The first match of the evening was for the NXT Tag Team Championships. It was a great opening match. The two teams felt very evenly matched all throughout the action. It was fast paced with a load of impressive moves by everybody. There were some really good reversals and some good, convincing near-falls and last second break ups. It felt really different from your average tag match, there was no heat segment or hot tag, it was just two evenly matched teams trying to outdo each other. It had a clean, decisive finish and was a great way to start the show.
The Velveteen Dream vs. Matt Riddle - This one was for the NXT North American Championship. It was another very good match. Riddle controlled a lot of the action with his MMA style, going for various submissions and strikes. Dream did just enough to stay in the match and keep it competitive. There were some really good reversals and as the match went on we got some convincing near-falls and drama around the submission attempts. They went for a good amount of time and had a clean, decisive finish. It was a very good, exciting, back and forth battle.
Pete Dunne vs. WALTER - This next match was for the United Kingdom Championship. It was another great, back and forth fight. WALTER controlled a lot of the action with his size and power advantage but Dunne was able to use his wrestling ability and small joint manipulation to stay in the fight. I liked the psychology of Dunne going after WALTER's hand the whole match. There were some good near falls and a couple of really dramatic, painful looking submission holds that looked like they could have ended things. It had a good, clean finish too and was overall a very enjoyable fight.
Shayna Baszler vs. Kairi Sane vs. Io Shirai vs. Bianca Belair - This Fatal Four-Way Match was for the NXT Women's Championship and it was another great match. The action was fast paced and constantly entertaining. The action was constantly coming from all angles and there were plenty of good, multi-person interactions. There were some very close near-falls and last second break-ups along with Shayna's devastating submission attempts and it all built to a strong and impactful finish. A fantastic match.
Adam Cole vs. Johnny Gargano - This was a 2 out of 3 Falls Match for the vacant NXT Championship. It was an absolutely fantastic match. The action was amazing from start to finish. It was a long match, lasting around forty minutes, but it just flew by. There were so many great counters and near-falls. Each fall felt earnt, they didn't fall into the trap of having falls end in ways that they would never end if it was a one fall match. There was some interference towards the end but it only added excitement to an already exciting match. The finish was great too, in fact there's nothing about this match that wasn't great.
This was a fantastic DVD. Wrestlemania delivered a brilliant event. It might be a bit long but on DVD it's easier to break it up into chunks. All the matches on the main card deliver and even three out of four pre-show matches were entertaining. It was a great night of wrestling. The RAW after Wrestlemania was a bit of a let down after the last few years but it was still an enjoyable show overall. If possible I definitely recommend getting the copy with NXT Takeover included as that was another Incredible event. It's worth picking up either way though, a great DVD.