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WWE: Best Pay Per View Matches 2012(TV) (2012)
The best of 2012's WWE pay-per-view matches.
For more about WWE: Best Pay Per View Matches 2012 and the WWE: Best Pay Per View Matches 2012 Blu-ray release, see WWE: Best Pay Per View Matches 2012 Blu-ray Review published by Martin Liebman on January 13, 2013 where this Blu-ray release scored 4.0 out of 5.
Starring: Triple H, Undertaker, CM Punk, John Cena, Dolph Ziggler, Big Show
» See full cast & crew
WWE: Best Pay Per View Matches 2012 Blu-ray Review
Another year, more great PPV matches.
Reviewed by Martin Liebman, January 13, 2013
There's a storm on the horizon.
This review should come as no real surprise to anyone who follows, watches, or collects the WWE on Blu-ray. The studio's latest effort is the self-describing Best Pay Per View Matches 2012, a collection of eleven primary and four supplementary matches from the year (or better said eleven months) that was in Sunday night megabucks wrestling. Unfortunately, the set contains nothing from either November 18th's Survivor Series or December 16th's TLC (Tables, Ladders, and Chairs) Pay-Per-Views. As always, the WWE cuts off the end-of-year events in these retrospective compilation pieces and does a disservice to the fans in the name of getting the Blu-ray out on shelves before the year's even over. Hopefully this will change in the future, along with the decision to release all Pay-Per-View matches onto Blu-ray and also offer (a more thorough) highlight reel compilation for those who don't want the entire experience. Otherwise, the set is fine for what it is and what's included; on to the review.
WWE personality Scott Stanford hosts Best Pay Per View Matches 2012 and appears only briefly at several junctures to set the stage for some of the most important and memorable matches from the set. The collection opens with what might be the best match of the year, the CM Punk-Dolph Ziggler showdown that's refereed by longtime Punk nemesis John Laurinaitis. It's a classic Pay-Per-View match in that several story lines come to a head as the zenith of professional wrestling skill plays out in the ring. The collection continues with a wide variety of matches and styles and settings, from the elimination chamber to a "no disqualification" match. The set is largely defined by the inclusion of two of the greatest, most historically important matches in WWE history, the Undertaker-Triple H "end of an era" battle and the "once in a lifetime" John Cena-The Rock clash at WrestleMania XXVIII that was so big the WWE released an entire video about that single match.
The set also features the obligatory Divas Championship match and offers a wide array of wrestling talent, from the aforementioned top names in the industry to second-tier but certainly first-rate wrestlers like The Great Khali and Cody Rhodes, but generally this set is packed with upper echelon stars who are and who have been the face of professional wrestling for a decade or more. As always with these WWE compilation pieces, this is a very straightforward, no-frills set that shows the matches in their entirety and also contains the various pre-match video pieces that set the stage for the story lines that are played out in the ring (the bonus section on disc two also contains a few post-match interviews, though unfortunately, none of the pertinent RAW or SmackDown lead-up segments are included here as they are with other sets). Overall, it's a very strong collection with which few will find fault. While the entire Pay-Per-View-on-Blu-ray roster would be preferable, the WWE has done a fine job in assembling the year's top matches into one set, sans the final two PPV events, of course, that will hopefully find their way to home video in future installments.
The following matches have been selected to be part of Best Pay Per View Matches 2012 (all matches are presented in 1.78:1 high definition):
Disc One (4:12:05 total runtime):
Disc Two (2:13:09 total runtime):
WWE: Best Pay Per View Matches 2012 Blu-ray, Video Quality
Best Pay Per View Matches 2012 arrives on Blu-ray with a stalwart high definition transfer that's not without flaws but that looks quite good at normal viewing distances. The image does present some rather hefty blocking around its darker backdrops, but as noted such do not really offend the sensibilities or even appear all that heavy when looking at the image from casual viewing distances. Additionally, some of the text graphics shimmer along the edges. Otherwise, this one's a real looker. Details are fantastic, offering crisp and very well-defined imagery of wrestler skin and tattoos, arena details, electric signage, and fans and handmade placards. The clarity is often striking, the attention to detail evident, and the sharpness and definition even far back into the deepest reaches of the crowds impressive. Colors are equally strong. Bright wrestler tights and multicolored electronic and handmade signage brings a diverse array of hues into the equation and all are handled with striking authenticity. Black levels are deep and flesh tones natural. This is a fine image and a good example of the sort of work being done by the good folks over at WWE home video.
WWE: Best Pay Per View Matches 2012 Blu-ray, Audio Quality
Best Pay Per View Matches 2012 features WWE's standard audio presentation: lossy Dolby Digital 5.1. The good news is that, despite the absence of a lossless option, this presentation proves suitably dynamic and satisfying for the material at hand. There's a very fine, pleasing musical presence within the program. Both overlaid music for the home video release as well as in-arena sounds blaring through speakers as wrestlers make their way to the ring play with good, crisp definition, high energy, and enveloping spacing. The surround channels carry a good bit of information as well, away from music. Thunderous crowd noise nicely pulls the listener into the arena and satisfies as a fine reproduction of what it's like to be in the midst of a rowdy WWE fan gathering. Heavy hits, smacks, and crashes during matches enjoy fine accuracy, presence, and clarity. Ringside commentary plays clearly and evenly from the center, ditto in-ring, backstage, and video package materials. This is a good all-around soundtrack that serves this material very well.
WWE: Best Pay Per View Matches 2012 Blu-ray, Special Features and Extras
Best Pay Per View Matches 2012 contains all of its extras on disc two (note that all extras have their own individual runtimes rather than being lumped together under a single timestamp). Additionally, all extras are presented in 1.78:1 high definition.
Backstage Pay-Per View Access:
WWE: Best Pay Per View Matches 2012 Blu-ray, Overall Score and Recommendation
Best Pay Per View Matches 2012 is another in the growing legacy of excellent, straightforward WWE compilation video sets. This one presents viewers with a nice assortment of eleven of the year's best pay matches but does fall short by failing to include anything from the year's final events. Still, fans will find historically important matches, championship belt bouts, and some of the highest quality wrestling the sport has ever seen. The collection presents fans with a who's who of the modern wrestling landscape and delivers hours of rapid-fire wrestling entertainment that fans will want to enjoy time and again. WWE's Blu-ray release of Best Pay Per View Matches 2012 features very good video and audio as well as some quality supplements in the form of bonus matches and interviews. Highly recommended to those wanting to get into the WWE, and recommended as a must-own for wrestling fans.
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