|$||70.5M||Star Trek Into Darkness|
|$||35.1M||Iron Man 3|
|$||23.4M||The Great Gatsby (2013)|
|$||3.1M||Pain & Gain|
|As of May 19, 2013|
This 3 DVD set highlights the best matches, interviews and vignettes from the heyday of Saturday Night’s Main Event on NBC (ie – 1985-1991), along with two matches when the show aired on Fox (Hulk Hogan and Sid Justice vs. Ric Flair and the Undertaker – watch for Sid’s pre-WrestleMania 8 heel turn; and The British Bulldog vs. Shawn Michaels).
The Jake the Snake Roberts vs. Randy Macho Man Savage match from 1986 is included, when both men were considered heels (although Jake was starting to get cheered). This match was unique for its time, as Vince always refrained from having heel vs. heel or face vs. face matches. Per Jessie Ventura’s commentary, when watching this match, fans can witness each wrestler perform some "good, old-fashioned cheating, as well as some great scientific wrestling."
The feud between Andre the Giant and Hulk Hogan is well-represented, as Andre manages King Kong Bundy against Hogan, then chokes the life out of Hogan after Bundy loses. The WWF should pay attention to what made Andre such a great monster and such a dominating force, as Andre continues to choke Hogan while beating the snot out of the other wrestlers who try to save Hogan from Andre’s wrath.
Andre is also a highlight of the 20-man over-the-top rope Battle Royal, where Andre’s headbutt elimination of Leaping Lanny Poffo (more on him later) splits open Poffo’s forehead in an excellent bladejob, before Andre casually tosses Hogan out of the ring. This match caused many fans to believe that Andre would defeat Hogan at the upcoming WrestleMania 3.
One of the highlights of this set is that fans can relive the formation and eventual breakup of the Megapowers (Hulk Hogan and Randy Macho Man Savage). One of the best matches on the set, and one that can be watched repeatedly, is the match between the Megapowers and the Twin Towers (Akeem and the Big Bossman), where Akeem tosses Savage out of the ring and onto Elizabeth, knocking her out (watching this scene multiple times, the bump that Miss Elizabeth takes is phenomenal, as Savage’s ass slams into her face, causing Liz to fall backwards to the ground, unprotected). Hogan, ever the hero, picks Liz up and takes her to the back for medical attention, leaving Savage to get squashed by the bad guys. When Hogan triumphantly returns to the ring, after what seems like a 15 minute period (with Liz telling the idiot to go back and help Savage), the Macho Man hauls off and slaps Hogan for deserting him and for "lusting" after Elizabeth (if rumors are true, Macho Man was dead on with that allegation). Of course, even though Savage leaves Hogan by himself in the ring so he can go to the back and berate Elizabeth, Hogan hulks up and defeats the near 800 lb. Twin Towers by himself. When Hogan returns to the backstage area to confront Savage, one of the best dramatic, soap-operaish wrestling storylines ever unfolds. At the time, I was such a Hulkamaniac and so convinced that Savage was a scumbag that I spit on my Macho Man bandana and ripped it to shreds!
Another classic is the match between Hulk Hogan and the Big Bossman in a steel cage. I believe this was the first time in a wrestling match when a wrestler was super-plexed off the top of the cage (Hogan super-plexed Bossman); definitely a HOLY SHIT moment, as both men sold it like they were knocked out for 3-4 minutes, with the fans cheering like crazy.
Fans are also treated to a couple of matches involving Mr. Perfect and The Genius (formerly Leaping Lanny Poffo, in his loveably, ambiguously gay persona, prancing around the ring doing cartwheels). After The Genius defeats Hogan by countout, make sure to watch the vignette where The Genius and Mr. Perfect destroy Hogan’s title belt with a hammer (historical note – this belt would go on to become the Hardcore title, awarded to Mankind by Mr. McMahon approximately 9 years later).
The specialty of SNME is lost on newer fans. With the advent of Raw, Smackdown and monthly PPV’s, it’s impossible for current fans to be able to appreciate the significance of how special SNME truly was. Short of releasing a collection of each SNME episode, this set is phenomenal at capturing almost all of the moments that made the show so memorable. Thankfully, Mean Gene Okerlund hosts this set, adding to its credibility, as Mean Gene was the original interviewer for the back stage segments that are included.
What’s aggravating to diehard fans of the show is that in an attempt to market to the younger "WWE" crowd, the third DVD contains 4 matches from 2006 to the present, when SNME came back to NBC, but the main event feel of the matches was gone. John Cena vs. Edge? Shawn Michaels vs. Vince McMahon? YAWN! Those matches/feuds were already available on RAW, Smackdown or PPV. The novelty of SNME was that fans were generally either watching matches for the first time, or were watching blow-offs to the major feuds of the day. I’m not a Cena hater (Word Life, Yo!), but the fact that John Cena is featured prominently on the cover and in the introduction of the DVD, when he simply was not a major player in SNME’s history is ridiculous!
Minor complaint aside, this set is a must own for WWF fans of the 1980s and early 1990s. Endlessly re-watchable and enjoyable, WWE has released a perfect compilation.
5 out of 5 Bodyslams.
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