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Review: WWE Survivor Series 2012

REVIEWS - DVD REVIEWS

Ask yourself a question CM Punk. Did I slam you six times or only five...

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Incredibly Survivor Series 2012 is the 26th annual slamfest to go under this name, and since its inception in 1987 when teams led by Andre The Giant and Hulk Hogan faced off against each other, it has been one of the big four pay per view (PPV) events for WWE along with Royal Rumble, SummerSlam and of course, Wrestlemania.

The unique selling point of Survivor Series has always been the emphasis on tag teams and SS2012, held at the Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Indiana is no exception, kicking off with a traditional five-on-five elimination match.  between a team featuring Brodus Clay, International Airstrike (Tyson Kidd and Justin Gabriel), and masked luchadores Rey Mysterio and Sin Cara and a team featuring Tensai, the wonderfully named Colon Cousins (Primo and Epico) and the Prime Time Players (Darren Young and Titus O’Neil).

survivor series 2012 sheamusThis is a decent match showcasing both high flyers and big, burly brawlers with some incredible feats of lightning athleticism courtesy of Sin Cara and Rey Mysterio, and moments of (perhaps) unintentional comedy when the likes of Titus O’Neil and Tensai throw the lithe luchadores around the ring like rag dolls. (No results/spoilers in this review, in case you want to discover them while you watch it yourself.)

Next up is a Divas match between defending champion Eve and challenger Kaitlyn which is surprisingly good. I still have bad memories of the amateurish Barbie doll contests that were typical of the early days of the Divas, but both Eve and Kaitlyn are more akin to Lita in their wrestling prowess than the fluff that was Sable or Sunny and deliver a good bout.

The United States Champion Antonio Cesara put his title on the line against challenger R-Truth in the third match on the disc, but it’s nothing to write home about unlike the following match between Seamus and Big Show (which arrives after a lengthy, rather dull segment involving AJ Lee and Vickie Guerrero – I’m all for the soap opera drama that has always been a part of professional wrestling, and when it’s well done, it’s great but when it’s not....). Being a long time wrestling fan (dating back twenty years!) I can still remember when both of these athletes were new to the company and they’re now both big draws for WWE and at the top of their games. Both men knock several shades of shinola out of each other in a good contest that is only let down by the conclusion which once more, as is too often the case at the moment in my opinion, eschews a clean pin for a ‘controversial’ finish.

The penultimate match is another five-vs-five elimination between Team Foley (represented by Randy Orton, The Miz, Kane, Daniel Bryan and Kofi Kingston) and Team Ziggler (featuring David Otunga, Damien Sandow, Cody Rhodes, Alberto Del Rio and Dolph Ziggler himself), and it’s a decent bout. Though not actively involved in the match as a wrestler, Foley brings his old friend Mr Socko out to play in a match that brings out the best in all the participants and serves up a satisfying finish.

survivor series ryback cm punk john cenaThe final match is the one that I’ve been waiting for, though, featuring a triple threat bout between John Cena, man mountain Ryback and defending champ C M Punk, who is one day off holding the championship for a year as he steps into the ring. I must admit that when Punk first appeared in the WWE universe I wasn’t convinced, but he’s developed into one of the most entertaining sports entertainment personalities to grace the squared circle since The Rock.

All three participants put on a superb show, delivering a stand up, at times positively brutal match that in the tradition of the finest WWE matches is impossible to call, and in fact ends with a pleasantly surprising intervention (yes, I know, but sometimes it does work and is justified). Even Cena, who I have to be honest I’m no great fan of due to his frequent inability to sell the kayfabe that is professional wrestling, is good and helps to make the match a fitting and worthy finale to Survivor Series 2012.

Survivor Series 2012 is out on DVD and Blu-ray on Monday 11th March.

4 stars


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