Review for WWE Survivor Series 2020
Survivor Series 2020 marked thirty years since the debut of The Undertaker and with that in mind WWE went all out with a tribute to him and also by allowing this to be a Bluray release to include some extra bits and pieces. I shall come to that later, but suffices to say this disk and the tribute was the equivalent of Clark Griswold getting the coupon for a year’s free membership of the Jelly of the Month Club, which is a shame as all in all this was a pretty solid PPV.
Each year the WWE have decided to make this PPV a Smackdown vs. Raw PPV and it is a shame that NXT got no love this year. Because of this, my only real issue with the PPV in general was the fact that none of the matches meant anything. It was special, in the sense that here was an opportunity to see who’s brand had the best champion, but after that it was back to whoever they were feuding with. However, unlike previous years there did not seem to be any note given to which brand won.
The Battle Royale which is included on the Kickoff show was fine, though I always wish they would understand that when you have this many people in it that we need at least twenty minutes to make it mean something. I am glad of who won it and it was enjoyable for what it was.
The two traditional Survivor Series matches were a mess, that is really all that can be said about them. Including a male and female match and spreading them out is possibly the only positive thing I can think to say about them.
For the Men, Raw Team consisted of AJ Styles, Braun Strowman, Keith Lee, Riddle and Sheamus against Smackdown’s Kevin Owens, Seth Rollins, King Corbin, Otis, Seth Rollins and Jey Uso. This match was simply all over the place and was just a bunch of people thrown together, a few good spots here and there, but ultimately matches that did not do anything for anyone.
The Women’s Raw team consisted of Nia Jax, Shayna Baszler, Lana, Lacey Evans and Peyton Royce against Smackdown’s Bayley, Bianca BelAir, Liv Morgan, Natalya and Ruby Riott. Again, this match was a mess. My biggest issue is that the whole thing seemed to be built around Bayley still thinking she was top dog and Lana being useless. A better match, but not by much.
As I said, the rest of the matches were simple Champion vs. Champion and so have their moments, but ultimately do not lead to anything. Intercontinental Champion Sami Zayn was against US Champion Bobby Lashley in what could and should have been a great match, but ended up just being a smash-slam affair with them leaning heavily into this Zayn is a Conspiracy-Nut story that he has been doing.
The Tag Champions Street Profits from Raw and New Day from, Smackdown was a good match. With both teams being so good, I was hoping they would have added some kind of stipulation to the match. Instead it is a by the numbers wrestling match, good, but forgettable.
Raw Women’s Champion Asuka against Smackdown’s Sasha Banks was a fantastic match and it is a shame that they are on different brands as they both work so well together. This match had a real Cruiserweight-feel to it that it made it very exciting and what I liked was that you really did feel that at any time either of them could have won.
Finally we have WWE Champion Drew McIntyre against WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns. Now, you may recall that McIntyre lost his title to Randy Orton at Hell in a Cell and so you may wonder why he is here, to be honest so am I. My feeling is that if this is the match they wanted to have, then they should never have taken the belt off McIntyre and I hate when the belts flipflop like this as it makes them lose some of their prestige.
However, this was another fantastic match. It has been surprising the last few months just how great McIntyre is in the ring and against Roman Reigns with all his (Hell Turn/Head of the Table story) it really made for an interesting match. I am surprised they went with the ending they did, but I am not disappointed and have to admit that at the end I was happy with what was a hard-fought well-balanced match.
Now, you may have noticed that I haven’t mentioned much about The Undertaker. I had expected maybe little tributes to him throughout the event. In a shocking moment, I think they gave more time to the Gobbledy Gooker who both won and lost the 24/7 Title throughout the night. However, at the end a number of Hall of Famers (too many if I’m honest) made their way down to the ring followed by the infamous Dong of the bell, Lightning, Lights going down and then that iconic Undertaker music as for the final time The Deadman walked to the ring.
This ‘Tribute’ was fine. It was nice that he was given the time to say his Thankyous and his Goodbyes, but if I am honest I expected more. I expected more than a few seconds of a package of his best matches and moments and though everyone knows who he is if you didn’t, after all this you would be none the wiser. The eerie moment of him bowing to the hologram of Paul Bearer was effective and it mostly worked, but it just didn’t seem enough. I expected some more pomp and majesty and maybe a little magic.
This set comes with the Kickoff match, the debut match of The Undertaker at Survivor Series 1990 and his final match against AJ Styles in the Boneyard Match at Wrestlemania. That’s it. The fact that they did film a ‘The Day of’ for The Undertaker for the lead up to this event and didn’t include it and did not include anything else is shocking. Some interviews, some highlight clip-reels… some anything? I was shocked and every time WWE release something on Blu-ray (which is rare) I expect it to be brimming with extra features. Instead, it is almost the bare minimum and this is a shame.
Survivor Series 2020 was a great show in general. It had some watchable matches, the Women’s and Men’s Championship matches were great and the rest was just fine. The tribute to The Undertaker was fine, but could have been better and not the massive send off I expected or that he deserved, but I doubt I would have ever been satisfied and so if you are a fan of The Undertaker this was a fine full stop to his career which will now Rest In Peace.