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Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » WWE - Shawn Michaels: Heartbreak & Triumph
WWE - Shawn Michaels: Heartbreak & Triumph
World Wrestling Entertainment // Unrated // November 27, 2007
List Price: $34.95 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by John Crichton | posted January 5, 2008 | E-mail the Author
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The latest WWE release, the Shawn Michaels Story: Heartbreak & Triumph, is a 3-disc collection documenting one of the most flamboyantly reliable wrestlers in WWF/E history. A two hour documentary on disc one, covers his early days in Southwest Championship Wrestling to AWA to his final stop, the WWE, as well as most, if not all, of the bases of Shawn's life, both personal and professional. Some promos, stories and deleted scenes round out the content on the first disc, while disc two treats viewers to eight matches, three of them for promotions other than WWE. Six matches, including a (nearly) hour-long Iron Man match, can be found on disc three.:

Disc One:

  • Growing Up - We learn a few things about Shawn's childhood, such as his mother's initial disappointment that Shawn was not a girl and how he became interested in wrestling at the age of 12. His time at Randolph High is discussed and we hear from his friend, Kenny Kent and his high school coach, Bruce Cannon.

  • Learning the Ropes - After a brief time at Southwest Championship Wrestling, he goes to Mid-South - where he's calling matches after only six months. From there, he heads to Kansas City and crosses paths with Marty Jannetty for the first time.

  • Midnight Rockers - He goes down to San Antonio and once again hooks up with Jannetty in the AWA, where they form the Midnight Rockers. There, they spend about a year talking about Buddy Rose and Doug Somers before wrestling them in a brutal, bloody match that results in them winning the AWA Tag Team Champion belts. Around this time, Pat Patterson notices them and brings them to Vince's attention. Jimmy Jack Funk antagonizes them Terry Garvin.

  • Big Break And Downfall - Thanks to an incident involving Jimmy Jack Funk that was, according to Shawn and Marty, blown out of proportion, they're fired from WWE. They head down to Continental, before spending some time working for Memphis and AWA simultaneously. Eventually, they make one more appeal to the WWE...

  • Second Chance - Vince takes them back, and as the Rockers, they storm the WWF. Arn Anderson and Tully Blanchard talk about their feud and how the Brainbusters helped Shawn and Marty become better wrestlers. However, during a 2-out-of-3 falls match against the Hart Foundation on an episode of Saturday Night's Main Event, the top rope breaks. The Rockers go on to win the match (and the Tag Team Championship), but since all parties involved thought it was weak, it never aired. Shawn and Marty talk about how much time they spend with each other and how their recreational habits, drinking, partying and doing drugs, results in the eventual split on the Barber Shop in 1992.

  • Heartbreak Kid - At Pat Patterson's insistence, Shawn's teamed up with "Sensational" Sherri Martel and is given the nickname "the Heartbreak Kid" by Mr. Perfect. Shawn also talks about winning the Intercontinental Championship from Davey Boy Smith.

  • Diesel - This chapter talks about Shawn getting a bodyguard after being moved away from Sherri.

  • Suspension - We learn how Vince suspended Shawn for allegedly taking anabolic steroids. During his suspension, he keeps the Intercontinental Championship belt - even though the WWF have already awarded the belt to Razor Ramon.

  • the Ladder Match - The fact that Shawn never relinquished the IC belt leads to this ladder match against Razor at WrestleMania X.

  • Clique - Later, Shawn, HHH, Razor, Diesel and 1-2-3 Kid/X-Pac team to form the Clique.

  • Friends Fight For the Title - This chapter is about Shawn winning the Royal Rumble and his World Championship match against Diesel at WM XI.

  • Knocked Out - A confrontation between Shawn and a patron at a Syracuse club leads to Shawn ending up in Ohio Valley Medical Hospital. It's also discussed how this incident became part of the storyline.

  • Boyhood Dream - Thanks to Pat Patterson, Shawn's match against Bret at WrestleMania XII becomes a 60 minute Iron Man match - which results in Shawn becoming World Champion.

  • Curtain Call - The controversial event at Madison Square Garden on May 19,1996, between Shawn, HHH, Diesel and Razor is discussed. Listening to Bruce Prichard, you'd think they slaughtered a bunch of preschoolers in the ring and spread their entrails around the arena in the name of Vince McMahon. We also get to see amateur footage of the event.

  • A Champion's Struggles - Shawn's peers discuss the pressure they think Shawn put on himself to improve the WWF's ratings and compete with the (then popular) WCW.

  • Hometown Hero - We learn about Shawn's Royal Rumble match in San Antonio and it's mentioned that it looked like it was the first time in a long time that he actually allowed himself to enjoy his victory.

  • "I Lost My Smile" - Shawn surrenders the WWF Championship on the February 13, 1997 edition of Raw. He decides to sells the angle by stating that he "lost his smile", a comment inspired by his mother. He found it three months later.

  • Hell In A Cell - On October 5, 1997 we see Shawn take on the Undertaker in a Hell In A Cell match at Badd Blood. It's discussed how he continuously put his body on the line during the match.

  • D-Generation X - After being referred to as "degenerates" by Bret Hart on Raw's October 6, 1997 episode, Shawn, HHH, Chyna and "Ravishing" Rick Rude form D-Generation X.

  • Montreal - This chapter is about the infamous Montreal "screwjob" on November 9, 1997 at the Survivor Series PPV. Shawn is described as being a loyal worker during the incident that came about because Vince didn't want Bret to leave the arena as the WWE Champ and take the belt to WCW.

  • Rock Bottom - As his personal life is crumbling, his problems escalate when he injures his back during a match against the Undertaker at the 1998 Royal Rumble. In spite of this injury, he still wrestles against Stone Cold in Boston at WrestleMania 14. During his time off, he continues to do drugs and also spots his future wife, a Nitro girl, while watching WCW on TV. After a mere two month courtship, they're married in Vegas and she's pregnant with Shawn son. HHH talks about a "pilled-up" Shawn coming back to a WWE meeting and pissing off the Undertaker.

  • Faith - At the lowest point in his life, and thanks to his son, Shawn finds God and the Cornerstone Church.

  • Return - After cleaning up his life, Shawn calls Hunter to apologize and, shortly afterwards, rejoins the WWE. His match at Summerslam against HHH is discussed, as well as his Championship match in the Elimination Chamber at 2002's Survivor Series PPV.

  • Fan vs. Idol - Jericho talks about his match against Shawn at WrestleMania 19 in Seattle. Personally, I had no idea that Shawn was this big of an inspiration to Jericho.

  • Brother, Brother, Brother - Shawn shoots from the hip when talking about Hogan - the animosity between the two and the feud against Hogan which culminated at SummerSlam 2005. Frankly, I wish they had included Shawn's shoot on the edition of Raw following the SummerSlam match. It was priceless.

  • No Holds Barred Against the Boss - This chapter talks about Shawn's (seemingly endless) feud against Vince, as well as his tag team partner at Backlash - God.

  • D-Generation X Reunion

  • ...Still the Main Event - Due to an injury to HHH at New Year's Revolution 2007, Shawn begins a feud with John Cena.

  • the Best Ever? - I'll let you decide.

Promos:

  • Raw 4/4/94 - Heartbreak Hotel - Three minutes from a skit during an episode of Raw where Shawn calls out Razor. I have no idea why this is included. Is there anything special about this that i'm missing?

  • Tell Me A Lie Music Video

  • Raw 8/1/05 - Larry King Spoof - This "spoof" is 8 minutes long, brother.

Deleted Scenes [Each clip is roughly two minutes long. Why they're deleted, I don't know]:

  • Wrestling Academy - Shawn talks about the academy he opened after his back surgery. Kendrick and Cade went there.

  • Bible Teacher - Associate Pastor Matthew Hagee talks about Shawn's bible study.

  • Colorado Expedition - Shawn's Colorado retreat is discussed.

  • Who's the Greatest Wrestler? - Shawn's match against Kurt Angle is discussed.

Stories:

  • High School Prankster
  • High School Talent Show
  • Letter Jacket
  • Mom's Approval
  • the Bruise
  • the Rocker's "Fight"
  • This Is A Little Higher Than I Thought
  • Brown Pants

Disc Two:

  • WCCW - 1/11/85 [Shawn Michaels vs. Billy Jack Haynes]

  • AWA Tag Team Championship Match - 2/10/87 [the Midnight Rockers vs. Buddy Rose & Doug Somers]

  • AWA Tag Team Championship Match - 6/12/87 [the Midnight Rockers vs. Super Ninja & Ninja Go]

  • MSG - 1/23/89 [the Rockers vs. the Brainbusters] - This was one of the matches mentioned as being instrumental in the development of Shawn Michaels' in-ring talent.

  • WWE Tag Team Championship [2 Out Of 3 Falls] - Saturday Night's Main Event - October 1990 [the Rockers vs. the Hart Foundation] - This was the infamous match mentioned on disc one. There's no commentating during the entire thing, and I have to admit that I am very surprised and quite pleased that this was included. As it was mentioned during chapter five on disc one, it might not have been the best wrestled match that these teams were a part of, but it was nice getting to see something that never made it to air.

  • Royal Rumble - 1/19/91 [the Rockers vs. Orient Express]

  • Intercontinental Championship Match - Saturday Night's Main Event - 11/8/92 [Shawn Michaels vs. the British Bulldog]

  • Royal Rumble - 1/22/95 - Shawn Michaels enters first and is the last man standing.

Disc Three:

  • Intercontinental Championship Match - In Your House - 7/23/95 [Shawn Michaels vs. Jeff Jarrett]

  • WWE Championship Match - King Of the Ring - 6/23/96 [Shawn Michaels vs. the British Bulldog]

  • World Heavyweight Championship Match - Raw - 12/29/03 [Shawn Michaels vs. Triple H]

  • Raw - 3/14/05 [the Rockers vs. La Resistance]

  • WrestleMania 21 Rematch - Vengeance - 6/26/05 [Shawn Michaels vs. Kurt Angle]

  • WrestleMania Rematch (non title) Raw - 4/23/07 [Shawn Michaels vs. John Cena]

Video: Shawn Michaels: My Life's picture lived up to the WWE's usual standards for their documentary DVD collections. However, some of the AWA stuff might not have been as sharp as the WWE matches, but I appreciated that they were included. This set is presented in the WWE's standard full frame 1.33:1 ratio.

Audio:
The sound for the documentary - and the majority of the matches - was crystal clear and I had no issues with the Dolby Digital 5.1 track whatsoever.

Conclusion:
Since I wasn't around for Shawn's first run in the WWF/E, practically everything on this disc was new to me. And I have to say, I liked what I saw. Shawn seems to be a straight-shooting, charismatic wrestler who gives it all in the ring and stands by his convictions and you can't argue with that. Heartbreak & Triumph does a great job documenting Shawn's history in the WWE and contains some entertaining matches. Highly Recommened.

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