WWE Superstar Collection – Randy Orton
1 Disc (Distributor: Freemantle Media) Running Time: 87 minutes approx.
I suppose it isn’t a coincidence that the subject of the second release in this “Superstar Collection” series should be the man who has been the foe and contemporary of the subject of the first disc John Cena- meaning I have to sit through two discs featuring wrestlers I can’t stand! The things I do for you guys…
Randal Keith Orton is the second third generation wrestler to make his name in the WWE (the first being that Rocky guy. What ever happened to him?) and over the past decade has made his way up to the top of the WWE with multiple title reigns and PPV headline matches to his name – a number of them against or including Cena.
Son of Cowboy Bob Orton Jr and grandson of Bob Orton Sr, the future “viper” was discharged from the US Marine Corps after going AWOL from the army so he continued the family tradition of becoming a pro-wrestler. After paying his dues in OVW, Randy was brought up to the main Smackdown roster in 2002 shortly after Cena also graduated to SD from OVW. While Cena’s career trajectory, after a bumpy start, was pretty meteoric, Orton’s was a lot slower, suffering injuries early on that he would sideline him for much of his early tenure.
It wasn’t until he was handpicked to join Triple H’s new faction Evolution, along with Ric Flair and another newcomer Batista, that Orton started to be noticed, his first defining moment coming when he faced Mick Foley in a brutal hardcore match at Backlash 2004. From then on Orton’s future was sealed, winning the World Title from He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named at Summerslam that year becoming the youngest World Champion in WWE history and being a perennial main eventer over the next few years.
Which brings us to the four matches presented here, again sourced from the last few years of WWE and Orton’s history. Interestingly the first two matches are from Orton’s heel days, the latter after his face turn.
As I said in the Cena release, these matches have slipped my mind despite only being a couple of years old, so this disc makes for an interesting reminder. No spoilers as usual but then again there are no surprises in the results either.
The Bash 2009 – WWE Title Three Stages of Hell Match – Randy Orton (c) vs. Triple H
The temptation to make reference about this being hell to watch is a chore to resist. It’s interesting to see these two as bitter enemies after what has recently transpired on WWE TV but at the time this was the main feud at the time that also featured Cena, meaning a fair proportion of PPV main events in 2009 featured a combination of all three men. The three stipulations for each fall are 1) Regular wrestling match 2) Falls Count Anywhere 3) Stretcher match.
Night of Champions 2009 – WWE Title Triple Threat Match – Randy Orton (c) vs. John Cena vs. Triple H
It had to happen after the numerous singles matches that these three would be brought together for one triple threat match. Although by now I think we were all bored with seeing the same trio every week on TV and every month on PPV. To try and freshen things up a bit, Orton was leading a stable of fellow descendant wrestlers – Cody Rhodes and Ted DiBiase Jr – known as Legacy who made their presence felt whenever Orton was in jeopardy.
RAW 3/1/10 – Randy Orton vs. Ted DiBiase
Legacy proved to be a short lived concern as the two subordinates began to tire of being mere lackeys to Orton which eventually manifested itself in them costing him the WWE title at the 2010 Royal Rumble leading to a triple threat match at Wrestlemania 25. This match against DiBiase Jr – himself a third generation wrestler (after Ted Sr and Iron Mike DiBiase) was the beginning of the end of Legacy.
Capitol Punishment 2011 – World Title Match – Randy Orton (c) vs. Christian
This is one of the matches that many “Internet” fans are convinced was made to annoy them. A few months earlier Christian, a well loved wrestler who was never seen as a main eventer by Vince McMahon, finally won the World Title but dropped it to one of Vince’s “chosen ones” Orton on the Smackdown taping two nights later, causing many to roll their eyes at the immediate return to the status quo as supposed to giving some else a go. While Orton has his supporters, it is this kind of favouritism toward him by Vince that puts him on the wrong side of the fan’s ire.
So nothing new is to be found here but if you don’t have the original PPV discs or the previous dedicated Orton releases then this bargain priced DVD is for you.
Rating – **
Man In Black