Over the years, I’ve had the good fortune to watch a good number of Rey Mysterio compilations. Between WWE releases and early RF Video work, I can safely say that I’ve got a sizable Rey library.
Yet the new WWE release, Life of a Masked Man, showed a lot that I had not seen before.
I will give WWE a lot of credit right from the get go. I was a little unsure about the DVD going in, since this was not only their third Rey collection, but was also not going to feature a traditional DVD doc. Rather, Masked Man features Rey in a sit-down conversation with Matt Striker with matches added to the mix.
Striker is perfect in this role. We know how much of a wrestling historian he is, and he really shows this off (in a positive way) in his conversation with Rey. Mysterio, for his part, doesn’t shy away from some of the more interesting questions thrown at him.
In particular, Rey and Striker talk about times when Mysterio dons the mask and times when he doesn’t. The candid conversation about posing for fan pictures without the mask is especially intriguing, and it’s really interesting to hear Rey’s point of view, especially in the TMZ world today where a photo of an unmasked luchador could be a fatal career blow. (It’s worth noting, however, that the maskless time in WCW is not discussed.)
Another segment that jumped out at me was when Rey and Striker discuss some of Rey’s favourite masks when he was growing up. You get a good representation of the ‘who’s who’ of the lucha world as you see that child-like smile crawl across Mysterio’s face.
Of course, the DVD is chock full of matches as well, and while some of them, namely WWE bouts, will be familiar, there are some pretty good hidden gems as well, including a couple matches from WCW’s “lesser” shows like WCW Pro and Saturday Night that even the most hardcore Mysterio fans probably have not seen before.
To me, this is really where WWE shows just how far they go in their legwork. Yes, the interview is in-depth and is the meat of the DVD that I really like; but one can only imagine how long the DVD crew sat reviewing matches to include here, and I have to say their selections were top-notch, especially when you keep in mind that, as noted above, they were pursuing matches that hadn’t been previously released from the first two WWE recordings.
Overall, I was extremely impressed with Masked Man, and it really does a good job in capping off your Rey Mysterio DVD collection (though it seems inevitable WWE will put one more out before Rey officially calls it a career). There’s no question — pick this DVD up today.