Bringing together the two TV taping shows from the WWE’s May 2014 tour, Live in the UK returns to DVD. Raw, Smackdown, Main Event and Superstars are all present and correct (with the latter two in truncated forms, including just the matches from those shows).
Raw revolves around the ongoing (at the time) John Cena and Bray Wyatt rivalry and Stephanie McMahon’s address to the WWE Universe on the future of (then) World Champion Daniel Bryan. And boy, doesn’t Bryan’s time on top seem a galaxy away now.
The WWE give the fans what they want for once, allowing them to sing along with Bray in his opening promo in a cool segment. Strictly in terms of “names” there are some big matches on the show , with the likes of Cesaro Vs Sheamus, Seth Rollins Vs Batista and Alberto Del Rio Vs Rob Van Dam. Of course this being WWE TV nothing is allowed to blossom too much but the majority of the show breezes along, never really being allowed to become dull. And in an aside, I know Ryback is not a favourite of many and his match with Big E Langston here is average at best, but his interview (in the old split screen Superstars of Wrestling style) cracked me up.
Paige obviously has to lose on her WWE homecoming and the in-ring interview that Renee Young conducts with Adam Rose is almost totally pointless but overall it’s a decent Raw show, albeit one without any real standout moments.
The Main Event tapings include two matches. Paul Heyman opens up the show, re-christening it Paul Heyman’s Main Event. It’s an interview about nothing, but presumably was intended to keep the fans awake. R-Truth against Damien Sandow sees the latter dressed as Sherlock Holmes and anyone expecting too much from an Aksana and Naomi match obviously hasn’t been following the Diva’s Division.
The Superstars tapings also are represented by two matches. The Big Show clashes with Titus O’Neil in a fair big man match, whilst Cody Rhodes and Jack Swagger do their best with their allotted time. Neither match is “must-see” but neither is dreadful.
Smackdown sees the Hulk Hogan Appreciation Society kick things off and actually contains some tidy TV matches. Dolph Ziggler against Batista is fun and the Uso’s clash against Harper and Rowan is pretty good too. Bo Dallas against Sin Cara is less so and the Diva’s tag match pitting the Funkadactyls against Eva Marie and one of the Bella Twins is pure storyline drivel. Still more Wyatt promo’s keep the crowd awake and although it is an up and down show it has its moments and rarely drags. It’s still merely a decent episode of Smackdown though, nothing special.
In terms of extra’s on disc 1 we get a match from one of the WWE’s earliest tours of the UK where Hulk Hogan defends his World Title against Macho Man Randy Savage from London, as seen on Sky One. It’s not the greatest match the pair ever had but it’s good fun and the pre-match promo from Hogan, Miss Elizabeth and Mean Gene is the usual Hogan fun. There is around half an hour of extra’s on disc 2, mainly made up of WWE Network pre-show footage from Raw. Some of it is utterly pointless, like the segment that builds up to Stephanie McMahon’s address to the WWE Universe on Raw but basically has her saying “you’ll have to wait for Raw to find out”. Whatever the many advantages of the WWE Network in terms of what is available to subscribers, it seems as if the pre-show leading into a three hour Raw isn’t one of the highlights of their offering. There is a pretty cool Paige promo video though and one of the HHH interview with Michael Cole, most notable for Tripper’s terrible attempt at a British accent.
In terms of the amount of footage, with four shows and an hour of extra material thrown in, you can’t argue about value for money. Still there’s not much here that is that memorable or warrants a second look but if you were at the Tapings in question this will make a fantastic keep-sake for your collection.
– By Matthew Roberts | @IWFICON
Thank you to our partners, WWEDVD.co.uk and Fetch.fm for providing our copy of WWE Live in the UK: May 2014. WWE Live in the UK: May 2014 is available DVD & Blu-Ray from Monday 11th August 2014. You can pre-order your copy from WWEDVD.co.uk now by clicking here.