Gleed’s DVD Review: WWE: Batista - The Animal Unleashed
By Haydn Gleed
Let's just address the elephant in the room right off the bat. Yes this DVD has been released for two months, but as a notorious cheapskate instead of paying for delivery on both this DVD and Paul Heyman's DVD, I opted to buy both together. Let's also be honest here, if you have a choice between watching the Paul Heyman DVD or the Batista DVD, which do you watch first?!
With that out of the way, let's take a look at the latest Batista DVD release. This DVD is not your typical retrospective review of a man's career; it was footage filmed in January and February of this year and Batista's return to the WWE. There was some reflection of his career as a whole, but the primary reason for this release was to show his emotions and reactions to returning to what he felt was home.
Batista also allowed the camera's to film the other passions in his life including his low-rider club and where he practises Brazilian jiu-jitsu. The DVD shows Batista preparing backstage for his return and also the Royal Rumble, and he discusses openly and frankly on how he's feeling.
I found this DVD interesting, but not compelling. The documentary portion of the DVD clocked in just under 40 minutes, and the majority of this was taken up by his outside WWE interests. I did enjoy following him backstage, and watching how he was welcomed back into the WWE fold and the fact that he showed a human side when he discussed how nervous he was feeling.
He also addressed the reasons for his leaving, and we were filled in with where he had been, what he had been doing in the 4 years between his last stint and his return. As mentioned above, it was interesting seeing his outside interests, and again it made him feel human, but for me personally I could have lived without a five-minute portion of watching Batista being whipped after getting his new jiu-jitsu belt.
The most compelling and what I would argue newsworthy portion of the DVD, centres around the reaction he received at the Royal Rumble, when Daniel Bryan mania was in full swing. They got his reaction immediately following the event, and you can tell that he wasn't a happy man. It struck me as interesting that for the majority of the documentary he claims that he doesn't care what people think of him, but yet based on his body language both in the ring and backstage in the interview, you can tell that's not the case.
Part of me wonders whether the footage was originally shot with the idea of showing his triumphant return, and winning the belts at WrestleMania, and the road he travelled to get there, but in the end, as we all know, that never happened. That's the vibe that I get from the documentary part of the DVD, where the documentary ultimately doesn't tell a story past his return nights at Raw and the Royal Rumble.
The DVD extras are nothing particularly special. If you are so way inclined, you can put yourself through the torture of the Punjabi Prison Match between Batista vs The Great Khali (please save your emails telling me it is an underrated match, it was awful). All joking aside, it does showcase some of the highlights of Batista's in-ring career that were not present on his previous DVD.
If you are a huge Batista fan, and you haven't done so already or it's not already on the network, I would recommend you buy the Batista - I Walk Alone DVD to understand the man and his career better. This DVD should have been a network release only, as it has some substance and interesting footage, but the majority of the release just feels like filler. I would honestly wait until this appears on the network.
Have you seen the DVD? Do you completely disagree with me and think it's the best DVD since the start of time? It's all good, hit me up on twitter @haydngleed or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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