Jericho DVD review
Aug 20, 2010 - by staff
The packaging for the Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“Breaking The Code” DVD set looks great, probably the best looking one WWE has put out in quite some time. There is a slipcase holding the set (not all WWE DVDs have a one) which has a shiny cover.
Opening it up the visuals of the whole set play off the blue Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã‹Å“codeâ€™ theme with great looking images of Chris Jericho on the pack and discs, including a large photo of him smirking similar to the Armageddon 2008 poster which looks to be new for the DVD.
After commercials each of the three discs starts off with 10 second countdown (the one used on Jerichoâ€™s 2007 return). This is a fitting way to start his DVD Iâ€™d say. Then on to a cool looking DVD menu with Jerichoâ€™s theme playing in the background. So letâ€™s get started!
Opening video to the documentary has various superstars such as Cena, Edge, Christian, Chavo Guerrero giving their thoughts on him voiced over clips of Jerichoâ€™s career over the years and some of his best known catchphrases too. On to the presentation, it is in 16:9 screen format bars at the sides of the older footage (theyâ€™ve put blue code on them to keep with the Y2J theme).
The documentary kicks off by looking at Chrisâ€™ childhood. By all accounts he was a very active kid into hockey, baseball, camping and swimming. Lots of home video footage here, and the main theme in this is the fact that growing up Chris either wanted to be a wrestler or a rock star. He followed the latter first of all and there is a look at his high school bands here.
Then on to Stampede Wrestling, talking about how he wrote in to them to become a wrestler when it was advertised. He got told not he wasnâ€™t old enough because you needed to be 18. Explains the importance of meeting Jesse The Body Ventura at a hockey charity event, telling him he wants to be a wrestler. His advice? Be ready for a life of pain and get a degree. Jericho discusses how he went on to get a Journalism degree and how his parents encouraged him to go for his dreams.
First guy he met on the road to his wrestling goal was Lance Storm and they feel that looking back they made it in wrestling because of each other. At times they were latching on to one another to keep it up and Jericho thinks they always pushed themselves. The Lance Storm interviews in this portion appear to be taken from Before They Were Superstars DVD I believe. Now some of his earliest promos are shown and you can see how far he has come in this field.
Sampling new culturesÃƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬¦
Bret Hart is introduced to the contributors now. The discussion is about Jerichoâ€™s time in Mexico now, this time being a boom period there and heâ€™d be receiving Beatles-like reactions from the fans after shows. He went by the name of Corazon de Leon and this was his first experience of Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“fame”, being essentially a teenage heart throb here and often experiencing screaming girls giving him gifts. Rey Mysterio talks about Jericho having the opportunity to work with a lot of great Mexican wrestlers. Jericho felt he was having the time of his life Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ working doing his dream job in a foreign country. Christian speaks here, saying he would often see Jericho on TV and considered him a big star already.
Jericho wanted to expand his horizons so went to Germany, where he worked the same arena every night, in front of the same people. This led to creativity in changing things up on a regular basis and he said this time in his career in Germany gave a huge amount of life experience, which he still makes use of now in wrestling and life.
Then on to Jericho teaming up with Lance Storm as the Thrillseekers in SMW. They were high flyers amongst mat based wrestlers of a different style so the crowd didnâ€™t know how to react. The biggest experience he got here was delivering promos. Shows highlights here of some of the Thrillseekers antics.
Jerichos explains that his biggest goal at this point was to work in Japan on the road to the WWE. He got the opportunity to work for WAR Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“Wrestling and Romance” in Japan with itâ€™s strong, stiff style where the importance was on the wrestling side not so much the character side. Over there, Ultimo Dragon was one of his favourite opponents and still is to this day. He points out these matches as one big reason he got into WCW and helped him to be scouted by the likes of Paul Heymen, Jim Cornette and Mick Foley who were all instrumental in taking him to next level.
Jericho gets extremeÃƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬¦
Jericho arrives in ECW. Paul Heymen brought him in and had him suplex Tazz straight from the off, which was a huge deal at the time and helped him hit the ground running because of Heymanâ€™s faith in him. Joey Styles has comments here, explaining Heyman was impressed by Jericho and knew the ECW original fans would appreciate him from the off because their die hard, tape trading wrestling fans knew of Jericho / Corazon de Leon before he arrived.
He was billed as the Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“Last survivor of the Hart Family Dungeon”, and Jericho looks back on how the affiliation with the Hart Dungeon carried a whole lot of weight back then and created a mystique around him. Cactus Jack helped him the most, bringing him into that company after showing his tape to Paul E. First appearance on ECW TV against Cactus Jack which solidified him as a big time player against such a tough performer. Joey says Jerichoâ€™s style worked perfectly in ECW with his international roots, making him an instant hit. Jerichoâ€™s great ECW fan following is evident from the footage and comments, despite him only being there a few months. The documentary shows Jerichos farewell speech to the ECW fans receiving a big Lionheart chant and reaction.
Where the big boys playÃƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬¦
The documentary takes a more serious tone profiling Jerichoâ€™s path to the big leagues in wrestling. At the World Wrestling peace festival Bischoff showed up and offered Jericho a job that quick. He couldnâ€™t believe it and accepted in a shot and there it was, he went to work for WCW. He explains the culture shock he faced there wrestling wise, and felt his few matches there were horrendous (Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“Jericho curse” he mentions in his book). He felt it was a hard transition to make and it didnâ€™t help that he was a nameless, faceless babyface character in the beginning. He says the nWo angle was great but the cruiserweight division was also a reason why they were beating WWE at this point.
In this section there are lots of enjoyable clips of Jericho against all the top cruiserweight guys. Rey says Jericho made that division great to watch every night. Chris feels WCW was a place for old wrestlers to have some fun in, but rejoiced when told he would be going heel and could go outside the lines. DVD shows Jericho as a heel and lots of his crybaby promos where he was developing a personality. Now he could say whatever he wanted in the short time he got before or after matches. Shows old interview with Bischoff saying Chris was responsible for a lot of the gimmicks like Monday Night Jericho and running with pop culture references. Shows some great footage of his catchphrases beginning to get over with fans Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ Jerichoholics, Paragon of Virtue, Never Evvvvvvvver Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ fans would bring signs and Jericho would rip them up. Chris thinks it was the Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã‹Å“ridiculuousnessâ€™ of what he was doing and saying got him over at this time.
It is evident by this chapter that Jericho got more creative power as he got more over with the fans. The documentary shows the Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“Conspiracy Theory” angle prominently here. Clips of Jericho showing up in Washington to attempt to look at the Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“rules of wrestling” and holding his Consipiracy Victim sign. Jericho jokes that there was no plan just him and the camera man going where they wanted. On to Man of 1004 holds Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ Malenko feud Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ shows the promo in which he read his list of holds and Jericho is giving his thoiughts on what he was thinking while doing it. Maleko said it was highly entertaining. Jericho reveals he was bad mouthing the sports teams in the area in the commercial break to get more heat when it was back on TV.
Now comes the topic of Goldberg and shows where Jericho went against an imposter Goldberg and explains how the real Goldberg wasnâ€™t happy at all with it. However the angle got over so well they ran with it with Jericho and the real Goldberg where Chris would be calling him Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“Greenberg” with no experience. Showing clips here of the times he was Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“challenging” Goldberg, where it reached Jericho 5 Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ Goldberg 0 and people wanted to see Goldberg kill him by this point.
Goldberg talks here (from Rise and Fall of WCW) saying it wouldnâ€™t have been realistic for Goldberg to go against Jericho who was viewed as a cruiserweight at this time, and the final match didnâ€™t happen. Itâ€™s at this point Jericho thought its time to get out of WCW as they had no plans to have Goldberg face Jericho which is what people wanted to see. Big war between Jericho, Goldberg and Bischoff talked about here and eventually a match was planned between them but never happened. Essentially it was ditched because of personal issues and not business which became the turning point for Jericho to try to get into the WWE.
The countdown to the WWEÃƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬¦
Signed with WWE in August, which was all he was thinking about in the end, and the bottom line was he was sick of WCW and wanted out. The DVD shows the original countdown clock and Jericho saying how he came up with the idea in a post office. Edge and Christian talk about the buzz it created. The documentary shows the countdown clock running out where Y2J interrupted The Rock. Jericho gives his thoughts on it as they roll it. Says the genius of it was it ran out right in the middle of Rockâ€™s promo.
Whilst showing the promo other stars like Matt Hardy say he had an idea it was Jericho and was excited about it to give Chris better opportunities and the fact he interrupted The Rock, who was the hottest thing going, showed the faith management had in him. The Miz says he loved it because Jericho ran his mouth building himself up but then Rock put him straight back down, which ultimately made Jericho a star. Hayes says it was one of the greatest debuts in history. Jericho says here looking back it was too cheesy and cartoon like and he doesnâ€™t like it, but knows people consider it great.
Jericho then talks about how he felt on the sidelines just shortly after this, feeling he wasnâ€™t living up to the hype and went from interrupting Rock to Vince asking him if he would work with a woman (Chyna). But he felt at least that was doing something major on the show. This portion shows the feud between he and Chyna and Jericho thinks at some point he will become IC champ in this feud, which had been an ambition of his. Miz says as time went on in his first year and a half everything he touched turned to gold. Leads to working with Stephanie where he says this was a great opportunity to bring the real Jericho out where the rock star would be standing up to the snobby bosses daughter. Clips of him bad mouthing Steph and the crowd jumping on it all, huge angle. Ironic as the first angle was with Chyna and the other big one was with Steph.
Triple H feud next. Says HHH was hot at this time and Jericho was getting pissed off he wasnâ€™t doing anything, but Vince was in two minds what to do with him and not very helpful. The documentary shows where Jericho beat HHH for the WWF title but it wasnâ€™t allowed. Y2J feels this was the best fan response he ever got and this chapter shows how it all went down and the decision getting reversed. Hayes says he is not sure that was the right decision but it elevated Jericho into the main event status, and Jericho agrees feeling that he got his mojo back at this point.
Building a legacyÃƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬¦
The topic is stardom, with this portion showing the guys hes beat with various WWE personalities talking about his break through. Then weâ€™re on to Vengeance 2001 (I felt here there was more past Jericho/HHH stuff to show) and shows how he won the Undisputed Champion, with Jericho giving insight into never thinking he would be booked to win it. Joey Styles interjects here that he loved this moment. Jericho is proud of it himself but he says it Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“took about 6 people to do it”. After the match Jericho sat in corner for a few minutes and just looked back in disbelief he had reached his goal and the top after being considered a cruiserweight in WCW. Then on to a look at his first promo as Undisputed Champ where Ric Flair was in the ring.
Jericho gives his thoughts here on working with Steph as heels or partners in crime. The story is told on how this came to be and the HHH feud for Undisputed Championship. He felt it didnâ€™t go quite right, and was bit of a let down putting the two arch rivals Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ Steph and Jericho Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ together. Main eventing Wrestlemania 18 came next in his home country. It doesnâ€™t register in Jerichos mind that he did main event that right however because of Rock/Hogan. He doesnâ€™t think itâ€™s one of his best moments of his career. Now the DVD shows cool ringside shots (shot on film) from Wrestlemania 18 of Rock/Hogan and Jericho/HHH. These seem to be never seen before and longer than usual. More of this please WWE! New angles/perspectives of the all time great Wrestlemanias events would be awesome to see.
Now we get a look at the Highlight Reel segment next, which I do feel deserved a feature on the DVD. Jericho says it came about because he wanted a cool show to do improv promos and comedy on, and originally wanted to call it Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“Jerichoâ€™s Junction”. Rightfully so, the OBSECENLY EXPENSIVE JERITRON 5000 gets a mention and Jericho feels the show was a staple of Raw for a couple of years.
Student vs teacherÃƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬¦
A look at Shawn Michaels Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ a major reason Jericho got in the business. Their 2003 feud is shown with Jerichoâ€™s thoughts on it all. It was aa double honor to work with HBK as both sides wanted to work with one another. Feels their first feud was mentor vs student idea. On to a look at their Wrestlemania XIX match (canâ€™t leave this one out of the doc or matches on a Y2J DVD!). Hayes says Jericho over-delivers at Mania and that you can put that WrestleMania 19 match up against most and it will win every time. Miz likes that Jericho had the last laugh after the match giving Shawn the lowblow despite losing.
His 2005 feud with Cena is featured next, and Y2J says he was a big fan of Cena from 2002 onwards. At this point of his career he wanted more time at home with his family, so this would be his last feud for the foreseeable future. Says whilst Cena is a little Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“unorphodox” so was Austin. Shows the fans being behind Jericho at their Summerslam 2005 match and he feels it was because the fans knew he puts his heart into everything and feels they wanted to see him win the title that night.
Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“Youâ€™re Fired” match with Cena highlights next and a look at how it came to be. Noticed here the FU/Attitude Adjustment that put Jericho away was pretty cool looking in how Cena made it look like he struggled to deliver it and was a big deal, essentially retiring Jericho for a while. Cena gives his thoughts on him being Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“fired” Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ says there was something missing when Jericho was gone. Jericho says a lot of fans were mad the WWE and Vince did that to him without knowing the truth but Jericho considers was one of his fav moments. Felt that was a good way to put a stamp on that part of his career up to then and was burnt out after non stop 15 years, essentially his entire life. Took advantage of the time away in regards to touring with Fozzy. Cena says Jericho is funny outside of the ring full of obscure knowledge, which was used in his VH1 work.
A closer look at Fozzy here, showing how Jericho met Rich Ward backstage at WCW event. A look at some early gigs theyâ€™ve done and the likes of Fozzyâ€™s Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“Watch me Shine”, Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“Martyr No More” and Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“All that Remains” are playing in the background. The band went from focusing on being a cover band to having more original stuff. Edge says theyâ€™ve morphed into a serious band and are musically tight, live or taped. A look at more recent gigs now. Fozzy getting quite a big chapter here which is surprising since WWE usually do a good job of glossing over them. You get the feeling Jericho lives his dream not only in wrestling but music too. Cena respects the touring he does and managing both lines of work. In his break he also wrote his book A Lions Tale, which his love for writing and degree in journalism helped achieve.
The love of the businessÃƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬¦
Y2J singles out watching Wrestlemania 23 Cena vs HBK and their one hour match in the UK as two matches that pushed him to come back. On to the Save_Us campaign, how they brought him back. Shows some of the cool viral videos they put together for it and nice to see them in DVD quality. He felt his entrance to the WWE was so big originally that he couldnâ€™t just walk back in 2007 without some sort of fancy comeback. Cena says it created a buzz and Jericho even mentions his sparkly vest! Says he didnâ€™t want to be a nostalgia act, wanted to be better than before not the same as before.
Edge feels he was kinda doing the same thing he did when coming back in the beginning which didnâ€™t lead anywhere, then the DVD shows the 2008 HBK feud origins which signifies a needed change with Jericho going heel and character turning upside down. Jericho feels that was the end of the Y2J era. Hayes feels his longevity stems from being a student of the game and knowing when to change. The movie Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“No Country for Old Men” and other influences made him focus on a new character. This is a great chapter and shows the change well Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ almost to the point of getting quite emotional showing the Y2J character coming to an end. Shows the passion he has for the new character and that his focus is on the stories behind the matches.
An honest manÃƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬¦
A look here at the unsanctioned match between he and HBK, this being the same night Jericho won the World title in the Scramble match. Jericho felt it was a rewarding time and felt the work here was some of the best work of his career, maybe Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã‹Å“theâ€™ best. A look at his feud with Rey on Smackdown, particularly concerning the mask. Jericho says he didnâ€™t work with Rey all that much in the past but at this time they reached their potential, as he understands how to work his style. He took pride in the inventive ways of incorporating the mask in the feud.
Working with anybodyÃƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬¦
Jericho/Edge team featured now. Hayes says they were going to be a huge tag team but the injury left Jericho with nothing. This led on to Jerishow which Chris thinks was a highlight of his career and Big Show was his favourite tag partner, knowing him for years with no egos involved in the team. Big Show says it was a blast and learnt a lot from it, and Jerichoâ€™s drive and passion. Shows the Royal Rumble as the beginning of the Edge feud into Wrestlemania. Then the world title win at Elimination Chamber. Edge and Jericho give their thoughts on facing eachother at Wrestlemania. Edge feels it will always stand out as it was the grand stage wrestling for the title and both sides wanted to steal the show.
Wade Barrett is introduced now talking about how he met Chris on NXT and feeling he hit the jackpot being aligned with Jericho on the show. Jericho sayâ€™s its an honour to work with the new guys and use his 20 year experience to guide these people like Barrett. Barrett says he got so much advice about in the ring and on the mic. All the clips here are on Barrettâ€™s matches and Jerichoâ€™s interaction with him on TV and Jericho explains he wants the new guys to have what he didnâ€™t early on in his career; somebody to help them out.
In reality Jericho doesnâ€™t feel heâ€™s actually the best in the world, but puts his effort into every sphere of his performances. Nice video packages here as the documentary is coming to an end, with other Fozzy tracks (quite frankly they all sound great) playing in the background showing a rundown of his whole career and title wins. Miz is saying the new guys want the career Chris Jericho has had, and Barrett says his talents and crossover appear makes him an all round talent everyone should aspire to be. Piper says he has raised the bar and brought it to a new level, Patterson ranks Jericho as one of the best performers ever simply because of his ability to entertain. Hayes says in regards to his legacy he should be remembered as somebody who loves to entertain.
The ending video really does look back at his whole career and feels like a closure of sorts, with Jericho saying he doesnâ€™t want a heros send off or a big retirement ceremony just disappearing into the sunset. Jericho has said in interviews he feels there is years left in him yet but the DVD doesnâ€™t refer to his plans for the future.
Thatâ€™s the end of a fantastic documentary. One of the best Iâ€™ve seen and a long time coming. So good I want to watch it again right now. One gripe would be perhaps not enough material on his time in the WWF prior to his Undisputed Championship run but this is understandable as this is a time where his best matches were predominantly with Chris Benoit. Speaking of Benoit, it is a shame there is not one mention to him in a documentary profiling Jerichoâ€™s whole career Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ at one point I kind of expected a reference to him Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ but we all know this is how WWE are dealing with the situation publically on TV and Home Video releases like this one.
Itâ€™s hard to fault the documentary as it did a great job telling the story of Chrisâ€™ career. The TV PG rating doesnâ€™t seem to affect things much here except a few curses. Iâ€™d say they had Jericho hold back a little on the issues of politics in the WWE (like his issues with management when he first came in when feeling he wasnâ€™t living up to the hype) and also on some other topics such as his relationship with Goldberg in WCW. They actually had a real fight in the locker room, didnâ€™t they? Also no insight on his relationship with Triple H when he was making a name for himself in the WWF, which is often a hot topic people donâ€™t know a lot about and would like to. Iâ€™m sure more juicy stories will end up in his second book though.
There were lots of good interviews on here Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ most came from Edge and Christian which is fitting given their friendship over the years Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ and also a good mix of old timers and young stars talking about Jericho. All of these comments were delivered in a serious manner rather than in character or simply talking about Jericho loving himself, which was a positive. I also liked what Cena had to say, although it seemed he could have been a bit more enthusiastic. I would have liked to see the likes of Vince, Austin, Rock, Triple H and Shawn Michaels interviewed for the DVD but I can understand why they were not. There were some older interviews on here from other releases such as from Eric Bischoff and Lance Storm but they all fit well for the documentary.
All in all, brilliant documentary that I was personally waiting a long time for, and is definitely one to rewatch. Almost full marks for this for me, itâ€™s that good, but not quite there. It would be closer to full marks if the likes of those I mentioned were interviewed for it as well and maybe the inclusion of some more controversial topics but it is a great documentary. Jerichoholics, get the DVD come September for this documentary!
Disc 1 Special Features:
17 Extras Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ Some cool stuff such as extra interviews like Chris talking about how important wrestling was to him growing up, how he came up with the name Chris Jericho (rather than Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã‹Å“Jack Actionâ€™!) and his thoughts on his first wrestling match in front of a crowd. Also on here are two cheesy Thrillseekers vignettes including the Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“Rock America” one but with dubbed over music! More importantly the infamous WCW promos are on here Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“Conspiracy Victim” and Jericho listing his Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“1004 holds”. Fozzy gets some love again in here with the Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“Let the Madness Begin” Music video.
Best of all might be that they put on an unseen post-Raw microphone joust and beer drinking between Austin and Jericho from 2003, and a post-Smackdown Jericho promo from 2009, which ends up in a verbal battle with an old guy in the front row. After which Jericho proclaims everybody in the building is ejected. Hilarious and awkward all at the same time!
The matches for Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“Breaking The Code” begin on Disc 2 and uniquely this portion of the DVD is introduced by Jericho who says finally the WWE monkeys have put together a Chris Jericho DVD. He explains that picking 6 hours of matches out of 2500 in his career was no easy process, and each match was chosen for a reason such as sentimental value, what that match meant to his career or simply choosing ones he wants the fans to see.
There are 19 matches on here. Iâ€™m not going to review them all now and I know a lot of you already know a lot of these matches very well, but Iâ€™ll take a look at the three matches with new content added in the form of alternative commentary.
– Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“Cowboy” Chris Jericho vs. Lance T. Storm
Calgary, Alberta October 2, 1990
Alternate Commentary By: Chris Jericho & Matt Striker
Home video quality footage here, this being Jerichoâ€™s first wrestling match in front of a Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã‹Å“bigâ€™ crowd. In the alternate commentary Jericho talks with Matt Striker about how he was feeling during the match such as at one point during it Jericho experienced reacting with fans during a match for the first time and felt like he was Hulk Hogan. The match isnâ€™t much good to look at, mostly due to the quality, but there a lot of unique moves being performed here such as hurricanranas and other Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã‹Å“high flyingâ€™ maneuvers that I didnâ€™t expect to see. The match ended up in a draw and Jericho is quite proud of how it all began wrestling Lance Storm who was integral to his motivation in succeeding.
– International Junior Heavyweight Championship Match
Chris Jericho vs. Ultimo Dragon
Japan July 7, 1995
Alternate Commentary By: Chris Jericho & Matt Striker
From Jerichoâ€™s personal collection, a bout with Ultimo Dragon in Japan that Iâ€™ve never seen before. Again not great quality but letâ€™s give it a watch. Jericho is known as Lionheart here. Jericho says this match is the reason he got into ECW, and later this tape was shown to Bischoff so it also contributed to him going to WCW.
Very fast paced, definitely a different style. Jericho says he hasnâ€™t watched this match for 10 years. Lots of awesome moves such as a moonsault type move off the top rope which Jericho jokes about that he canâ€™t do anymore. Japanese fans study the matches, hence their quiet nature, and he felt like a rock star over there with the fans. This match was before Jericho started doing the Walls of Jericho.
Thereâ€™s a dangerous looking piledriver to Ultimo Dragon on the outside which Jericho says there was no reason for and he thinks the style has changed these days. Springboard drop kick on Jericho to the outside which he says he probably stole from Dragon or another wrestler there. Well thought out spots and moves done on the fly throughout the match. Dragon counters the Lionsault as he tried to jump over him. Lots of unique counters to pins and we see a dragon suplex to Jericho. Pace doesnâ€™t slow down, simply remains fast throughout the match as Striker alludes to on the commentary. Cool to see some of Jerichoâ€™s old moves like a tiger suplex that he no longer does.
Lots of talk on the alternate commentary which isnâ€™t about the match like Striker asking if Jericho can go to supermarkets without being recognized. Back to the match, the finish comes with Jericho retaining the IJ title by a butterfly suplex (he says linsault was finisher) which was a big deal to beat the local guy in Japan. This was a good back and forth speedy match that ultimately got him into the big leagues.
– Chris Jericho vs. Shawn Michaels
WrestleMania XIX March 30, 2003
Alternate Commentary By: Chris Jericho & Matt Striker
This ought to be good. One of my favourite wrestling matches ever now with a voice over from Chris Jericho as it goes along. The match is arguably the show stealer of the whole event as it flowed so well and always worth a watch. It was their first time wrestling eachother. Jericho explains it was a student vs teacher type storyline, and says HBK only wrestled a few matches and wasnâ€™t originally booked for WrestleMania but they both decided they would wrestle eachother after a Highlight Reel segment.
This was Jerichoâ€™s 13th year in the business at this point and thought he hadnâ€™t had a defining Mania moment up until this point. Both on a mission Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬“ Shawnâ€™s return WrestleMania and Jericho wanting a big moment on the grand stage. As they get started Jericho says itâ€™s the first lockup ever referring to the other matches and feuds they will have after this. In the match good guy and bad guy goes out the window. Smooth flowing moves, counters and keeping up the pace. Jericho ribs on Cole by saying one of HBKâ€™s moves is Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“Vintage” Shawn Michaels and heâ€™s using that in context rather than saying Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“Vintage Alica Fox” for example.
This is in Jerichoâ€™s top 3 matches in his view. Striker asks why Jericho is still there in the WWE when the likes of The Rock have gone on to other things and he says itâ€™s all about passion. Jericho locks in the Walls on the outside, working his back in the story, which Y2J claims was Pat Pattersonâ€™s idea. Jericho does his cocky pin with the foot on Shawn Michaels and he says he stole that from Japan. Throughout the match you can see the old HBK coming back on the grand stage. Jericho and HBK got along so well because of their faith in God also, he says. Jericho did the HBK nip up to a big crowd reaction which he says he practiced for an hour before hand, then HBK does the same behind him. Striker refers to it as a big wrestlemania-esque moment.
Jericho says he jotted down ideas for this match before hand. Jericho says the fun loving Shawn of the beginning of the match has gone and the focused Michaels is back, and HBK is back in business. Back and forth pin attempts by the two of them. He says ever wrestler strives for a match like this, as Michaels counters the Walls now and after a few moments Jericho hits a nice lionsault. Michaels ends up in the Walls but gets to the ropes. Jericho does the spinning elbow off the tope which he doesnâ€™t do that much anymore (which I miss).
Jericho goes for a sweet chin music of his own and nails it. The crowd are thinking it might be over but he kicks out. Back and forth shots at eachother. Michaels gets out of another Walls using the ropes and Jericho ends up with sweet chin music, but it still isnâ€™t over. Pace slowing down but neither guy is relenting. Shawn rolls up Jericho from behind and gets the 123. It looks like the two will shake hands, they end up hugging but ultimately Jericho lowblows Michaels. Striker and Jericho have a big laugh at this and Jericho says Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“take that, good guyÃƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬¦best match of my career right there!”.
Views on the Match Collection
In terms of WWE content, the match listing for me seems to be lacking in the years 2002-2004 and whilst the documentary does well at making up for that by looking at his tag team with Christian for example, I would definitely have liked to see the Jericho/Christian cage match from Raw in 2003 as a match on here. The reason I say those years is because matches within that time frame from TV are more obscure yet there are some gems like the Y2J/HBK rematch. Also I am a somewhat puzzled why the Triple H match at Fully Loaded 2000 is omitted.
Itâ€™s also hard to watch through a DVD on the career of Chris Jericho and not find any Chris Benoit matches in there but this is completely expected. Still, itâ€™s a shame as the collection of matches would go up a notch with maybe two Jericho/Benoit matches added. There is not really enough matches covering his early years either but this is expected given that they only had 2 discs of space to work with and the focus being on WWE. Overall I enjoyed the matches and feel they gave a good accounting of Jerichoâ€™s career, with the right career changing/elevating matches and integral victories included. All in all great matches here that you do think about when looking back on Jerichoâ€™s career.
Special mention to Jerichoâ€™s WWF debut from 1999 also being on here, in addition to his 2007 WWE return and integral matches such as the championship win that wasnâ€™t to be against HHH in 2000, Undisputed Championship victory, his WrestleMania 19 match with HBK, first match ever with Undertaker and title match at WrestleMania 26.
The DVD Verdict
The documentary is a fantastic watch and will remain so for years to come, and itâ€™s worth buying this DVD even if that was the only feature. After the documentary on the same disc you have a whole host of great special features there including some rarities and further interviews with Jericho and others which improve the documentary even more. As much as I wanted some comments from The Rock on there and other past stars of the WWE, thatâ€™s hardly something to expect so you canâ€™t really fault it on these grounds.
As for the matches itâ€™s a great collection which covers Y2Jâ€™s whole career and having his WWE debut and 2007 Ãƒ¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…“re-debut” included amongst the matches is a great touch. Without a doubt there should be another Jericho DVD in the future specifically for matches, but this DVD does a great job of giving a look at Jerichoâ€™s whole career in both documentary and match form with very good selections of content in both. For a diehard Chris Jericho fan like myself this is a DVD set you canâ€™t do without and the documentary heightens lets the viewer look back on just all heâ€™s done in the wrestling business that made us his fans.
This is simply a must buy for all WWE fans and DVD collectors. The DVD will be released on September 28th in North America and mid October in Europe and Australia.