Held, once again, at the Staples Convention Center in Los Angeles on August 15, 2010, Summerslam 2010 was a fairly controversial pay per view special after it originally aired thanks to the way that it ended, but time has gone on to lessen the impact of that ending as far as the storyline's in this batch of bouts are concerned. This time around, the focus is all about the main event in which the WWE team square off against The Nexus (for those who don't know, these were the 'new talent' wrestlers primed for the scene in the WWE NXT series), but of course, this wouldn't be a WWE event without some other ongoing feuds being thrown into the mix.
Here's a look at six the matches that make up the event, but without the winners revealed, so feel free to read on without fear of spoiling the event for those who haven't seen it.
Intercontinental Championship With Dolph Ziggler Vs. Kofi Kingston: This opening match found obnoxious and arrogant Ziggler defending his title from fan favorite Kingston. It's a pretty solid opening bout but Ziggler dominates from start to finish. Kingston tries his best to get a grip on the match but Ziggler's skills are legit and he has trouble taking him on. It's an okay match that it really there more to set the stage for what's going to come later on with The Nexus than anything else.
Divas Championship With Alicia Fox Vs. Melina: Despite the surprise appearance from some unexpected female wrestlers at the end of this match, this bout is your typical Diva's match. There are rarely any surprises in these matches for whatever reason, which is unfortunate as some of these ladies are really good in the ring. You'll have no trouble figuring out who is going to win this one, and it's not surprisingly the weakest match of the entire night.
Handicap Match With Big Show Vs. The Straight Edge Society (CM Punk, Luke Gallows, And Joey Mercury) : Not being a fan of the S.E.S. or of CM Punk in general but liking Big Show in the ring, I had mixed emotions about this one but it turns out to be a pretty solid fight. There aren't any surprises here but it's enjoyable to watch Show use his size to his advantage and fend off the irritatingly holier than thou S.E.S. crew. Not a classic match, but a solid one, made even better when it ends when The Miz comes out to work the mic and announce that he'll honor team WWE by joining their ranks against Nexus.
WWE Championship With Sheamus Vs. Randy Orton: This ongoing feud comes to a boil here in this match in which any interference will result in suspension and which will stand as final, with no rematches allowed. This is a really good fight, with both participants working the crowd and giving their all. Depending on your allegiances you may or may not be disappointed in the ending, but regardless of your feelings on who won, you've got to admire the lengths that these two men went to for the big finish here. Lots of great action, lots of entertaining interaction, all in all just a very strong match from start to finish.
World Heavyweight Championship With Kane Vs. Rey Mysterio: Kane defends against Mysterio, a man half his size, and there was a lot of potential to work their rivalry into something exciting here. Instead, this match of more of a ploy to further the Undertaker storyline, so it should surprise no one to find out that he returns here, seeking revenge against Mysterio for the attack he feels he committed against him. Rey, being clever and a pretty noble wrestler, doesn't impress with his usual acrobatic and high flying moves, but he does pull an interesting trump card out at the end. Not the classic that it had the potential to be, but a match that at least puts an interesting kink into the storyline it's based around.
Elimination Match: Team WWE (John Cena, Bret Hart, Chris Jericho, Edge, John Morrison, R-Truth, and Daniel Bryan) Vs. The Nexus (Wade Barrett, Darren Young, David Otunga, Heath Slater, Justin Gabriel, Michael Tarver, and Skip Sheffield): The highlight of the whole night is obviously this match, which clocks in at over a half an hour in length and which sees Daniel Bryan return and which sees Bret 'The Hitman' Hart back in the ring. This is a rock solid, action packed fight from start to finish and while it isn't all that surprising to see which team wins or to see who wins it for them, there are moments where you might doubt who is going to take it all the way. This was a really strong way to close what was, until this match, a fairly mediocre special on a high note.
Ultimately, Sumerslam 2010 is good. Not great, but good. It resolves some storylines, expands on some others and presents a couple of standout matches as well as more than a few mediocre ones. The final bout makes it worth seeing, as it really shows how an elimination match can be done right and if this isn't the greatest Summerslam event we've ever seen, it's a solid one that's worth checking out for WWE fans, particularly those who enjoyed the Nexus storyline.
The fullframe image looks pretty good on this DVD, even if the picture is interlaced. The quality is pretty decent, not showing any annoying compression artifacts during any of the matches and only showing some minor shimmering in some scenes. Color reproduction looks alright and skin tones are fine but the black levels can sometimes be a little less than perfectly defined.
WWE Summerslam 2010 has a strong Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound mix. There are no alternate language dubs, subtitles or closed captioning options. The audio here is fine, there aren't any obvious problems to report. The dialogue is always easy enough to understand and there are no issues with hiss or distortion worth complaining about. The 5.1 track sounds nice and full, with some nice crowd noise coming from the rear channels but it remains front heavy for the most part. There's nothing reference quality here, but the sound is good. An alternate Spanish language dub is also included.
There's not much here in the way of supplements but the extras section does contain a brief interview with Daniel Bryan in which he discusses the WWE/Nexus match. Aside from that, there are menus and chapter stops and an annoying army recruiting advertisement that plays before you get to the main menu which you cannot skip past or fast forward through.
As is often the case with WWE DVDs, it would have been nice to see more extra content provided on this disc, Summerslam 2010 is still worth a look for wrestling fans. It's not a classic special the way the 2009 event was, but it resolves some storylines, opens up a few more, and provides some pretty solid action along the way. The quality of the disc is on par with other recent WWE releases, so it's not perfect but it's not bad, and entirely worthy of renting.
Ian lives in NYC with his wife where he writes for DVD Talk, runs Rock! Shock! Pop!. He likes NYC a lot, even if it is expensive and loud.