One of the biggest tabloid news stories of the last decade has been the Wagatha Christie trial between Coleen Rooney, who is one of Britain’s most famous celebrities and wife of England’s record-scoring footballer Wayne Rooney, and Rebekah Vardy, which has become one of the UK’s highest-profile High Court defamation cases of recent years.
The three-part documentary takes a look at the case from Coleen’s point of view of the trial, with the focus of the first episode on explaining who Coleen is, introducing her, her family, how she became one of the most famous faces in football, while still only being a teenager at the time, by dating one of the hottest new footballing prospects.
The series goes into depth into some of the Rooney family’s issues, which often made headline news in the UK, especially following a night in which Wayne was arrested for drunk driving and he was in the car with another woman. While the pair were repairing their relationship, Coleen continued to share personal photos and info on her private Instagram account that only her closest friends and family could see.
But when Coleen worked out that someone was selling stories from her private Instagram account to The Sun newspaper, she tracked down who did it by laying some traps with fake stories, which made their way into the newspaper, resulting in Coleen calling out Rebekah on Twitter, which “broke the internet” and resulted in a libel court case between the two.
Before watching this documentary, I wasn’t interested in the story. I’d see the story brought up on the national news while the court case was ongoing, but I never really paid too much attention to the Rooney’s or the court case since I’m not a fan of football. So 99% of the series was ultimately brand new to me, and I thought it did an excellent job telling the whole story.
Obviously, this story is from Coleen’s side, who had kept quiet for years, while Rebekah appeared on as many TV shows and articles as possible, claiming her innocence, which she still does, though the evidence shown in the series is very damaging, which is why the High Court sided with Coleen.
It’s worth noting that at no point during the show, did we hear directly from Rebekah Vardy, but we did see some clips of her defending herself on other TV shows and, more importantly, evidence of her WhatsApp messages. The show did a fantastic job in recreating the social media moments, so you could see what was happening and how Coleen was reacting.
This show isn’t going to be for everyone. The whole idea of two rich wives of England footballers battling it out in court over Instagram messages and selling stories to the press isn’t something most of us can relate to. But I think we can relate to the idea of someone protecting their family and having the fortitude to keep going, despite the ongoing social media backlash and media whirlwind to just give in, but that’s what makes this story even more enjoyable.
Overall, I really enjoyed watching this documentary. My wife and I watched all three episodes back to back on Disney+, which always indicates that the story catches hold of you. Especially that third episode, since ultimately, I wanted to see what happened (I could have probably just done a Google search and found out, but I was engrossed in the series by this time!). It’s a very well-made documentary, which introduces the Rooney family well, especially if you’ve no clue who they are, but it also shows what happens when someone’s trust is broken and how the media works. I think that was one of the highlights of this series, getting an inside look at what the UK newspaper media is like, especially with regard to sources and the power they have.
Rating – 4 Out Of 5
You can watch “Coleen Rooney: The Real Wagatha Story” on Hulu in the United States and on Disney+ in the UK, Canada, Australia and other countries around the world.
Roger has been a Disney fan since he was a kid and this interest has grown over the years. He has visited Disney Parks around the globe and has a vast collection of Disney movies and collectibles. He is the owner of What's On Disney Plus & DisKingdom.