NXT is WWE’s third brand, well known for it’s tendency to create stars in such a short time. This DVD was dedicated to that with a list of NXTs top 25 of all time. In the last review I did, I covered the ‘30 Years of Survivor Series’ DVD and in that I was very critical. However, the things I criticised were improved and I can’t see a fault in this DVD.
We start off with Tom Phillips giving a brief introduction to NXT. He name drops a few alumn who’ve gone on to do great things and then the list gets underway.. The list entries have a video package but with sections in between, quizzing other WWE/NXT stars about the performer. This was really well put together and this is what the survivor series dvd, in my opinion, was lacking.
The top 25 were all deserving of their place on the list. There was a few surprise entry numbers. That was bound to happen though. The list of illustrious superstars included greats like: Triple H, William Regal and John Cena. It was also very cool to see the NXT Superstars and alumn talk about their peers in such a positive way. Also, it was great to reminisce and look back at some great gimmicks and matches.
Cesaro made the list, which wasn’t a shock considering what he did for the brand in its early days. A lot of people picked up on that. His feuds with Sami Zayn and William Regal should definitely be in the conversation for best rivalry in NXT’s early days. Like I just mentioned, it was great to see peers praise Cesaro and his contribution to NXT.
One which surprised me was Paige. She defitnitely deserved to be put on but due to the situation she’s in with WWE at the minute, I wasn’t sure that she would be. A big name who didn’t make the list such as: Roman Reigns or Dean Ambrose could’ve made the list instead. It was easily done. In my opinion, Paige definitely deserved a place on the list over those two.
The superstar input wasn’t scripted and you could definitely tell. It added a sense of sincerity which can’t be faked. It was wrestlers giving their genuine thoughts on their colleagues. This was made more apparent on Alexa Bliss’ entry more than anyone’s. Many stars said that they didn’t believe she was going to do much in the WWE. Reminiscing about her old cheerleader gimmick, it was crazy to see how far she’s come. The change from over-the-top cheerleader to intense bad girl was drastic and will arguably go down as the best image change in NXT history.
Tyler Breeze made the list! I love Tyler Breeze, he’s my favourite NXT wrestler of all time.. His schtick was so original and he had the charisma to perfect it. He put on solid matches and the NXT higher ups thought that much of him, they used Liger’s one off WWE appearance in a match against him at NXT Takeover: Brooklyn. The fact that he’s gone to SmackDown Live and is now doing something completely different to his NXT gimmick while perfecting it to the same degree, proves that he’s a fantastic performer.
NXT Tag Teams got their own segment prior to the Top 10 countdown but none of them were ranked. It was a collection of video clips for each team. The Vaudevillians were included and it was cool to see Simon Gotch again I guess. The Ascension was really cool to see at their most dominant. A lot less like the Road Warriors cosplayers they later became. Enzo and Cass at their best, The Revival in their earlier days and DIY were all welcome additions to the list. It was a great compilation of teams and the tributes were fitting to the guys that made NXT weekly TV so entertaining.
The new generation of NXT was represented by none other than Ember Moon. Although receiving a low placement on the list, it was still cool to see her on it. It felt like just yesterday she debuted and wowed everyone with her appearance and unique in ring offence. It just adds to the point I started off this review with, NXT are really great for creating stars in a short time.
Finn Balor. His position is high obviously and I think it’s also pretty predictable. However, it’s predictable with good reason. Finn Balor elevated NXT and is the longest reigning champion in the brands short history, putting on barnburners every time his championship was on the line. Every time Balor was in a feud with someone it felt like a big deal.
This disc finished on a positive note, looking to the future of NXT and all the stars on the rise. Superstars name dropped here included: Aleister Black, Billie Kay & Peyton Royce and Ruby Riot.
This disc had a collection of classic NXT matches including an untelevised contest between Xavier Woods and Big E Langston from 2011.
My 5 Match Recommendations:
- Non-Televised Match - Big E Langston vs. Xavier Woods - NXT (Pilot Episode)
- NXT Championship Match - Seth Rollins vs Corey Graves - NXT January 2, 2013.
- Fatal 4-Way Match for the NXT Championship - Adrian Neville vs. Sami Zayn vs. Tyler Breeze vs. Tyson Kidd - NXT TakeOver: Fatal 4-Way.
- Adrian Neville vs. Tyler Breeze - NXT January 15, 2014.
- Antonio Cesaro vs. Sami Zayn - NXT June 12, 2013.
Like the disc before it, this had a collection of NXT classics. From this disc I recommend the following 5.
My 5 Match Recommendations:
- Sami Zayn vs. Shinsuke Nakamura - NXT TakeOver: Dallas 2016
- NXT Women’s Championship Match - Asuka vs. Ember Moon - NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn II
- NXT Championship Match - Finn Bálor vs. Samoa Joe - NXT (Lowell, MA) April 21, 2016
- Bayley vs. Alexa Bliss - NXT July 6, 2016
- NXT Women’s Championship Match - Sasha Banks vs. Becky Lynch - NXT TakeOver: Unstoppable 2015.
All in all, I believe this DVD is an all round fantastic set. Great list, great matches and I for one, thoroughly enjoyed every second of it. Definitely recommend.
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