The age of streaming is upon us, and while there is still a demand for physical media, we are already seeing some of those traditional methods of release head into the sunset. That seems to be the case for WWE's line of home video DVDs and Blu-rays, as Wrestlingdvdnetwork.com has reported that WWE will no longer be offering DVD or Blu-ray releases in the United States and Canada. As of right now, that means that the Survivor Series DVD release will be the final one in the US, which releases on December 28th, though as of right now there are still a few releases scheduled for the UK, so we'll have to wait and see how that plays out.
WWE Home Video has been releasing DVDs since 1999 and before that, they were releasing various specials, spotlights, and pay-per-views on VHS since 1985. In the years since DVD WWE transitioned to also offering Blu-ray releases, but 2021 looks to be the last year of that tradition.
As for why it's pretty easy to put together the reasoning. WWE launched the WWE Network in 2014 and since then they've steadily increased the number of new specials they shoot for the network as well as interview-style projects, such as Broken Skull Sessions with Stone Cold.
A big draw for the network was always access to the pay-per-views every month, and since launching on Peacock the demand for original content has only increased. Meanwhile, things continue to shift to digital more and more, and with WWE's recent string of cuts to its roster, it is likely that WWE is also looking at ways to cut costs across all of its divisions, including Home Video.
Wrestlingdvdnetwork addressed the possible reasons for the move as well, writing "As for reasoning behind the move, while specifics haven't been stated to us, the why is probably the obvious and in the end will boil down to revenue, coupled with the company putting less emphasis on DVD and Blu-ray in recent years and more of a focus on new content for the WWE Network and Peacock, whereby WWE content is streamed online."
The WrestleMania annual DVDs and Blu-rays are probably one of the most popular releases for the line, so it will be interesting to see if next year's WrestleMania gets some kind of a release despite the move.
What do you think of WWE's decision? Let us know in the comments or as always you can talk all thins wrestling with me on Twitter @MattAguilarCB!