WWE tried experimenting with exclusive PPVs in the United Kingdom during the Attitude Era and Ruthless Aggression Era. The company had a huge following in the UK and wanted to treat the fans to one or two special PPVs each year. Shows like Rebellion, Insurrextion, Capital Carnage and One Night Only would all take place live in the UK and air on PPV there. North American fans would get the chance to buy the shows on VHS or DVD.
We will look back at the ten major events from the United Kingdom PPV series for WWE. All the shows had top tier talent, but only a few were treated as A-List PPVs. Many felt like a mix between a B-List PPV and a glorified house show. Find out just which events left an impact and which ones failed to make a mark. These are the WWE UK exclusive PPVs ranked from worst to best.
10 Insurrextion 2002 (Triple H vs The Undertaker Main Event)
Insurrextion 2002 is remembered for all the wrong reasons as this was the overseas tour with the infamous plane ride from hell. Various wrestlers would get suspended, fined or even fired for their controversial actions on the plane.
The show itself was a huge disappointment. Triple H and The Undertaker had a lackluster match in the main event and the semi-main event of Steve Austin vs Big Show was even worse. WWE didn’t have a world title match on the card as Hulk Hogan didn’t make the trip as WWE Undisputed Champion.
9 Rebellion 1999 (Triple H vs The Rock Main Event)
The rise of Triple H started around the time of Rebellion 1999 putting him in a main event against The Rock. Both men had a steel cage match shortly in the first WWE Championship reign of Triple H. They had a solid main event with Triple H getting the better of Rock.
The rest of the card was the problem with extremely weak depth. Rebellion 1999’s second and third most important matches featured a forgettable triangle tag match of Edge and Christian vs APA vs the Holly cousins and Chris Jericho vs Road Dogg.
8 Insurrextion 2003 (Triple H vs Kevin Nash Main Event)
The final of the WWE United Kingdom exclusive PPVs was Insurrextion 2003 with the Raw brand having their show air live in the UK. Triple H’s boring feud with Kevin Nash for the World Championship was the main storyline at the time and they main evented the show with Triple H retaining the title.
Other lackluster matches included Goldust vs Rico, Test vs Scott Steiner and a six-man tag match with Teddy Long attempting to wrestle. The rare bright spots were Christian vs Booker T for the Intercontinental Championship and Jazz vs Trish Stratus for the Women’s Championship.
7 Rebellion 2002 (Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman vs Edge Main Event)
Smackdown received the Rebellion 2002 event as the first United Kingdom exclusive PPV for the brand. Brock Lesnar’s WWE Championship was still going strong as he received a strange title defense here. Paul Heyman was forced to team with Lesnar defending the title against Edge with Brock retaining.
The rest of the card was average with the only standout match being Los Guerrero vs Chris Benoit and Kurt Angle for the WWE Tag Team Championship. Lackluster matches included Rikishi vs Albert, Funaki vs Crash, and the tag team match of D-Von and Ron Simmons vs Chuck Palumbo and Val Venis.
6 Capital Carnage 1998 (Steve Austin vs Mankind vs Undertaker vs Kane Main Event)
The star power of Steve Austin was the biggest selling point of the Capital Carnage 1998 event in the United Kingdom. Austin successfully defended the WWE Championship against the three intimidating contenders of Mankind, The Undertaker and Kane in a solid match.
The undercard was decent with The Rock vs X-Pac, Triple H vs X-Pac, Ken Shamrock vs Steve Blackman, and the mixed tag match of Christian and Sable vs Marc Mero and Jacqueline all delivering. WWE had a hot product and the fans reacted with huge ovations most of the night.
5 Rebellion 2000 (Kurt Angle vs Steve Austin vs The Rock vs Rikishi Main Event)
2000 was one of the best overall years for WWE with huge star power at the top. Rebellion would showcase that with a strong main event of Kurt Angle successfully defending the WWE Championship over Steve Austin, The Rock and Rikishi.
The other fun matches on the card included The Undertaker vs Chris Benoit, Kane vs Chris Jericho and the triangle match of Edge and Christian vs the Dudley Boyz vs Test and Albert. Mick Foley even added to the fun as the Commissioner with an entertaining opening show promo.
4 Insurrextion 2001 (The Undertaker vs Steve Austin and Triple H Main Event)
The heel turn of Steve Austin at WrestleMania 17 and his teaming with Triple H as the Two Man Power Trip was the major storyline heading into Insurrextion 2001. Austin and Triple H lost a unique handicap match against Undertaker with the WWE Championship on the line, but the title didn’t change hands since Undertaker pinned Triple H.
Other impressive matches on Insurrextion featured William Regal vs Chris Jericho in a match for the Queen’s Cup, a two out of three falls match of Kurt Angle vs Chris Jericho and a couple of fun tag matches. WWE had a strong outing with this event.
3 One Night Only 1997 (Shawn Michaels vs Davey Boy Smith Main Event)
The first WWE United Kingdom exclusive PPV came in 1997 with One Night Only. Davey Boy Smith defended the European Championship against Shawn Michaels in the main event. The controversial ending saw Michaels win a solid match beating the hometown hero as fans showered the ring with trash.
One Night Only was still one of the better UK exclusive PPVs with fun matches like Bret Hart vs The Undertaker for the WWE Championship, Dude Love vs Triple H in a great opening match and Vader vs Owen Hart.
2 Rebellion 2001 (Steve Austin vs The Rock Main Event)
WWE brought the Invasion storyline of WWE vs the Alliance to the United Kingdom for the Rebellion 2001 event. Steve Austin retained the WWE Championship over The Rock in the main event thanks to outside interference from Kurt Angle.
The WWE side kept it even when Chris Jericho retained the WCW Championship over Angle in a fun bout. Edge and Christian however would be the ones to steal the show with a highly entertaining opening cage match. Rebellion 2001 was an impressive show with a few great matches and huge star power at the top.
1 Insurrextion 2000 (The Rock vs Triple H and Shane McMahon Main Event)
Insurrextion 2000 deserves the nod as the best overall United Kingdom exclusive PPV for WWE. The main event featured The Rock overcoming the odds to retain the WWE Championship in a fun triple threat match against Triple H and Shane McMahon.
Fans were treated to a great event with a loaded card of matches like Chris Jericho vs Eddie Guerrero, Kurt Angle vs Chris Benoit and Too Cool vs The Radicalz. WWE was firing on all cylinders in 2000 and Insurrextion helped bring that over to the United Kingdom.