WWE - Royal Rumble 2007
World Wrestling Entertainment // Unrated // $29.95 // March 13, 2007
Review by John Crichton | posted May 2, 2007
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You would think that Vince would celebrate this, the twentieth annual Royal Rumble pay-per-view. You would think that Vince would go all out to celebrate this, one of the three longest annual PPV events. You would think that Vince would honor its history somehow (other than holding it in the same city as the tenth annual Rumble), while having an eye toward the future.

You, my friend, would be wrong and apparently don't know jack...err...Vince.

To be fair - there are things that make this Royal Rumble unique - this is the first time that the ECW "extremists" participated and...umm...okay, so that's about it. Frankly, i'm surprised (and disappointed) that Vince didn't arrange a surprise or two for this event. In fact, it didn't even live up to Lawler & JR's claim that this was the "most star-studded Royal Rumble evar!!" - for the most part, it was business as usual at a WWE pay-per-view. Before I begin a brief match-by-match breakdown, lemme tell you that this year's Rumble was held at the AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas on January 28, 2007. There. Now that I have that out of the way, here's the card:

  • the Hardys vs. MNM - What a difference a ladder to the face makes! Yes, the Hardys once again face MNM in the opening match of a PPV. However, unlike the snoozefest of a match when they faced each other at ECW's "December To Dismember", this one was actually entertaining! The Hardys are...well, the Hardys - they still manage to fly high as they go through their signature moves. And while this match sees Mercury in his first PPV action since the aforementioned ladder to the face at last year's "Armageddon", Nitro is the one that actually handles the bulk of the action against the Hardys - and that's not a bad thing. This was an entertaining match and a good way to kick off the Rumble.

  • Theodore Long and Jonathan Coachman in their office

  • WrestleMania 23 "All Grown Up" Vingnette(sic) - Sorry, but I was just not feeling the campaign for the latest WrestleMania - particularly the little girls dressed (or should I say UNdressed) as young "Divas".

  • ECW Championship Match [Bobby Lashley vs. Test] - If you don't want to know what happens during this match, please stop reading now. Ok, you've been warned. Mind you, I don't watch ECW. When it first started airing on Sci-Fic (snicker), I admit I set my DVR to record it. However, week after week it wouldn't record it. After reading weekly synopsises, I realized that it was actually doing me a favor. Anyways, after a "rumoured" disagreement with some of the writers on SmackDown!, Lashley headed to ECW where Vince decided to give him a major push. Test, on the other hand, I have no idea how he ended up on ECW. Heck, I can't even remember the last time I saw him in the ring (was it with Stacey Kiebler? why does it matter?). Well, according to the brief package before the match, it looks like they were building Test up to be a monster and someone that would actually bring it to Lashley. So what does Vince and his crack team of writers decide to do? They have Test get counted out by walking away from the ring! Makes sense, right?

  • John Cena in the trainer's room

  • World Heavyweight Championship Match [Batista vs. Mr. Kennedy] - Since Batista used to be on Raw, i'm familiar with him. Kennedy, however, i'm only familiar with him though his PPV appearances. And let me tell you, they've been very impressive. This match is no different.

  • Theodore Long, Jonathan Coachman & Kelly Kelly in their office

  • WrestleMania 23 Promo

  • Last Man Standing Match for the WWE Championship [John Cena vs. Umaga] - Cena is far from my favorite wrestler, and while it wasn't as brutal as it could've been, I have to admit that this match wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. I thought Umaga was better here than he usually is, while Cena was the same as always. However, it didn't annoy me as much as it usually does.

  • Theodore Long, Jonathan Coachman & Kelly Kelly in their office

  • Royal Rumble Match - If you don't know the outcome (or don't wish to know), please stop reading now. As I stated in my previous Royal Rumble review, I mark out for these kinds of matches where wrestlers from the different brands mix it up. I guess after watching Raw every week, I get tired of seeing . While the person who lasted the longest was Edge (at close to 45 minutes), Sandman got the short end of the stick after being eliminated by Booker in only thirteen seconds. And while the segment where Khali stands there and headbutts various wrestlers, before throwing SIX of them over the top rope was ridiculous, I am grateful for one thing - he eliminated "the Miz". By the time it got down to HBK versus the Undertaker, I wasn't as excited as I was throughout the match. See, both wrestlers are good and they most definitely deserve all the props they get, but after last year's win by Mysterio, I was hoping we'd see another surprise like that with an up-'n-comer, as opposed to a vet that's been around and will most definitely have a slot at WrestleMania. Oh well. What do I know?

    The following wrestlers are in the Royal Rumble match and the numbers in parenthesis are the position that they entered the ring:


        Raw Superstars

      • Ric Flair (1)
      • Kenny Dykstra (3)
      • Edge (5)
      • Shelton Benjamin (9)
      • Super Crazy (13)
      • Jeff Hardy (14)
      • Randy Orton  (16)
      • Viscera (19)
      • Johnny Nitro (20)
      • Shawn Michaels (23)
      • Chris Masters (24)
      • Carlito (27)
      • the "Great" Khali (28)

        SmackDown! Superstars

      • Finlay (2)
      • Matt Hardy (4)
      • Gregory Helms (8)
      • Kane (10)
      • King Booker (12)
      • Chris Benoit (17)
      • Chavo Guerrero (25)
      • Montel Vontavious Porter (26)
      • the Miz (29)
      • the Undertaker (30)
        ECW Superstars
      • Tommy Dreamer (6)
      • Sabu (7)
      • CM Punk (11)
      • the Sandman (15)
      • Rob Van Dam (18)
      • Kevin Thorn (21)
      • Hardcore Holly (22)

    In addition to the matches, we're also treated to these extras:

    • Shawn Michaels & John Cena vs. Rated RKO [Raw 1/29/07]

    • Donald Trump and Mr. McMahon [Raw 1/29/07]

    • Todd Grisham interviews Undertaker and Kane

    Video: Royal Rumble's picture was pretty colorful and vibrant, but still suffered from the usual slight compression issues due to all the pyro and graphic elements. It's presented in the WWE's standard full frame 1.33:1 ratio.

    Audio: The Dolby Digital 5.1 sound was crystal clear and enveloped my living room while I was watching it. Viewers are also given the option of watching the disc in Spanish.

    Conclusion: While I didn't enjoy the outcome of this year's Royal Rumble match, I can't deny that it was pretty entertaining (at least until Khali hit the ring). In addition, the matches that prefaced it were entertaining as well - save the Test/Lashley ridiculousness. And though I felt that Vince missed an opportunity to and should have done more to honor the "anniversary" of the Rumble, I don't have a problem branding this a Recommended disc - thanks to three matches before the Rumble, and the Rumble itself.

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