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James Cobo: Pissed off Vince McMahon
CL: THIS IS…THE REMIX.
If I was mean, I'd do that every paragraph or something, but I am no P. Diddy. No sir. His desecration of Mr. FUCKING Cheeks' "Lights, Camera, Action" deserves time in prison.
DJC: Sheeit - spoken like someone who hasn't heard the re-touch of "Special Delivery". ARG ARG ARG ARG ARG. ARG.
DJC: PRE-SHOW - I AM A GENIUST, PART 1: So I says to myself, "Self, you better get down there early so's you can stake out a spot in line and get all up in front where the Ack-Shun is at." Thus, I'm down there at like 2:30 or so, standing roughly fifty feet from the surface of the sun judging by the heat. The surreal thing is that I am, judging by the wardrobe of my compatriots in line, the only one not there to see Sabu. On the off chance that this doesn't immediately conjure up UPN sitcom pilots featuring ME as the sassy doormat character in your mind, I'll give you a hand:
messy apartment (flute-y fade-in music)
CL: There's no way 11 Sabu fans can fit in your apartment.
DJC: Sure they could. They're hardcore.
CL: And wait, if they really did that show, I'd have to be the wacky neighbor who comes in with pithy one-liners, only to be met with a chair to the face.
DJC: - Doron Diamond and Jonathan (? I suck with names) shows up. I immediately begin making increasingly loud jokes about Sabu, as the over-under on me getting beaten to death with a sign somewhere including the word "Extreem" skyrockets. The arrival of Chris Lening, of course, only all but seals my fate in that area, as I begin loudly praying for Sabu to no-show.
CL: In retrospect, the fact that he did show up was more surprising than it would have been if he no-showed.
DJC: - As I anticipated being the only person in line, I brought my Lynch List as well as a mammoth tome of Pauline Kael's movie reviews and a book of David Rakoff's essays (read them! they're funny!) in my backpack. Well, when I get up to the front of the line, the security guard informs me that I'm'a have to trudge ALLLLLL the way back to my car to drop it off, which is BULLSHIT - I had no food, drinks, cameras, or bombs in there; what fucking difference does it make? And better yet, by the time I get back, my Jackass Friends have Cliqued me out of a seat, so I have to bootleg one from the surrounding area and deal with a line of sight dominated on the lower middle by a tall guy with a giant head.
CL: The only reason we didn't save you a seat is because we don't like you. Actually, we didn't know where the hell you were - for all we knew, you were backstage partaking in fitting of the tiny pants on the strippers. And any man who does that deserves no seat.
And I'm not sure whether the tall guy with a Giant Head was me or the guy in front of me. If it was me, then Nyah Nyah you're short.
DJC: I want it noted for the record that if I'm five-foot-nine, then Chris Lening can't be more than five-foot-nine-and-a-quarter.
CL: If it was that other guy, then my biggest problem was that he seemed to be living out the ECW Arena dream in his seat, so that was quite often a little bit disturbing to have to see.
DJC: - I want a Tokyo Gurentai shirt SO MUCH, but I ultimately opted for a three dollar Coke instead.
CL: Super Dragon Evolution 2 pretty much left me with very little of the cash on hand. Although I came so late to the SoCal Indy scene that I have seen exactly None of the Matches featured live.
DJC: I, of course, blame UCLA for being stupid and built on hills.
DJC: Out of NOWHERE to start the show, they blast Faith No More's "Epic" (dur) over the PA. VERY SUDDENLY. And they play the WHOLE SONG, which loses a lot of its appeal without the visual of the exploding piano or the flopping fish. They then go into some song which is either the next song on the Faith No More album or some random Kid Rock song. And somewhere in here - SWEET CHRIST! - out comes the Epic Professional Wrestling Female Entertainment Squadron, led by a Fine Young Lass who, as she never formally introduced herself, I shall refer to hereinafter as Titania.
CL: I thought it was the girl who hosted the EPIC show on KJLA which I have not seen.
DJC: They throw out shirts and hats and such and, in the case of Titania, give an awful lot of people an awful lot to think about Wink Wink Nome Sane. But then it turns out that Titania's not just some airheaded blonde girly what got her some big ol' boobays, she's also the RING ANNOUNCERESS, and with god as my witness she's worse than Lillian Garcia.
CL: Yeah, the closest thing to a complement I can give her is that…um…she probably gets a lot of good tips in the Champagne Room. I'm bad at complementing the ladies made of plastic composites.
DJC: Anyway she introduces the participants for the first match. Sadly, TARO is unable to show, so Excalibur gets axed from the match after cutting a promo laced with various words not found in the Bible. Someone's not wrestling at a Jewish community center any more!
CL: The JCC is Phil's house; everyone else just basks in the glow. Phenomenal Phil's absence from this show disappoints me, as he was responsible for the funniest thing I had seen all year before this show (ooh, foreshadowing…)
Disco Machine/Lil Cholo (w/ Excalibur) vs. Shogun/Mr. Excitement
CL: I believe Disco and Cholo also came out with some chick with fake breasts.
DJC: OH SWEET GOD, YEAH THEY DID - the chick in purple. Christ on a flagpole, she was SCORCHING.
CL: Of course, I could be confused, as roughly half of the competitors had some girl who brought the silicone along with them. Or saline. I would hope saline, as it's safer. I'm Premed-we have to know these types of things.
DJC: Unsurprisingly, this was a very fun, spotty little affair. I can't say that it wasn't a little disappointing, given how monstrously talented these four are relative to their position on the card, but hey, in terms of warming up the crowd, this was a fine, fine affair.
I think that with opening matches, the key is to keep the action moving - after all, the crowd's still settling in, so you need to hook 'em early and keep 'em hooked. In that sense, this match ROCKED; there was barely any down-time, and the spots that they hit were, for the most part, pretty goddamn good.
CL: This was, of all the undercard stuff, the best possible choice to open the card. It was fun, it was accessible to everyone, and the flow was nice and smooth.
DJC: Specifically, Cholo looked like a fucking STAR in the match; just about everything he did was convincing (most notably kicking Shogun directly in the middle of his face), and he had the single most impressive move of the match with his BEASTLY tope con hilo. He showed me more here than he did in his match with B-Boy, and considering how big I was on that match, well, there you have it.
CL: It would have been interesting to see what TARO and Excalibur would have added to the match, and where Cholo would have fit in; either way, he was just all over this match.
DJC: Of course, I don't mean to cheapen the work of any of the other wrestlers here either. A big part of what appeals to me about RevPro is how they tend to say "Fuck formula" and do stuff that works better for them. And yes, granted, this has led to some really meandering clutch-and-grab affairs, but hey, when it works, it's a million times more exciting than Boring Old Formula. Here, they eschew Ye Olde Playing Ricky Morton (for the most part) in favor of working a really dynamic, fluid match, with a lot of tags to keep the fresh man in as much as possible. Granted, this makes it feel less like a Tag Team Wrestling match than a Four Guys Divided Into Two Teams Wrestling match, but I actually like it better that way, as neither of these teams consistently work together. But in order to make it work, you had to have a bunch of guys in there who could keep the pace under control, and that's where everyone shined. Mr. Excitement - I mean goddamn, if anyone can have the crowd under their control, it's Mr. Goddamn Excitement, and here he was just kingsized, CRUSHING the heels when the time was right and taking a crushing when he needed to. And it didn't hurt that he was facing Disco Machine, very probably the best-kept secret on the SoCal circuit; he's one of the best in the business of getting across his character in the most direct routes possible, which translates into more involvement in his matches (as evidenced by later in the night, when during Dragon/Dragon, some jackass spent a lot of time casting aspersions on Disco's sexual orientation).
CL: Sign of a Different Crowd #1: The First Indy show I ever went to was Rev J, and there, Disco was met with the suggestion that he was aping Magnum TOKYO. Here, he was called gay. Excitement was also really effective at getting endeared to the crowd, to where his transitions actually got a good response, unlike some other tag matches later…
DJC: And Shogun...I won't lie and say that he didn't look a little off in his execution tonight, because he did. But just like at the RevPro show, I was VERY impressed by how he held the match together, and I tend to devalue executing moves in the face of a wrestler proving that he can keep a match from degenerating into spotspotspotspotspot. And while this match was a spotfest, it never really got out of control - just a fun, well-disciplined match that didn't really try to do too much and succeeded pretty nicely, by my count.
I also can't talk about this match without talking about Excalibur. I know I say it every time I touch a keyboard these days, but Christ on a flagpole, he's going to be amazing; he connects with the fans so viscerally that he can make a match heated almost all by himself. I bring it up because here, that's essentially what he did; I ran into him after the show and, like a North Carolina Fool, actually told him that "his match" was pretty good. I'm not quite sure what exactly it is that's missing from his wrestling that keeps him from that upper echelon currently occupied by the Dragons et al, but seriously, every time I see him at a show, I'm more convinced that he'll get there very, very soon.
CL: He's got as much physical charisma as anyone I've seen live, with the possible exception of Spanky, who, to be fair, does have the advantage of his awesome, awesome hat. He's got good technique, too. The only thing I haven't seen from him is the same ability to build the story of a match I've seen from the Dragons and sundry. I've seen him play his role within a match very, very well, but I've never seen him be able to dictate a match on the same level as the upper echelon of Indy Folk.
DJC: The thing is, he can do it; I've *seen* him do it. It's just that for some reason, it doesn't quite come off as well. I'm guessing it's transitions, simply because that's the big problem with %99 of the people wrestling on the indies, but hey.
CL: I want to make a comparison to older Takaiwa vs. current Takaiwa, but I'm entirely sure if it fits. He can be a big huge dick and it's fun to watch, but it lacks the substance of the matches where there's all that narrative going on and it sure as hell ain't being dictated by the young NOAH guy. CHRIS BAD AT ANALOGY.
DJC: Anyway, like I said, this was a Perfectly Acceptable Match that didn't want to be anything else, and I got no problems with that. It's matches like this that make the SoCal scene so great: you've got workers so finely modulated that they can tone down their stuff an awful lot, and it's still fun at the dirt worst. *3/4
Titania comes back out to introduce the next match, and I begin to wonder whether or not she's digging around the back of a freezer in between the matches. I would continue to wonder this throughout the night. GOD BLESS AMERICA.
CL: Just because I feel like saying something, "Duffman says a lot of things! OH YEAH!" Oh, that reminds me, someone tried to spell an extended "Oh!" as "OOHH!" instead of the preferred "OHHH!" Just wanted to point that out; I can leave the breast jokes to Cobo. Here where I live we have a little something called "class."
DJC: Fah. Class is for suckers. I ain't no Yurp-een.
CL: Also, I believe the ring announce girl was pulling down the front of her shirt throughout the show, so as to show even more giant fake cleavage.
DJC: God, she was practically hooking the sides of it to her ankles by the end. GOD BLESS AMERICA ALL OVER AGAIN.
The Ballard Brothers vs. Piloto Suicida/Darkside
DJC: This match fucking SUCKED. I hate to bust on matches with workers that I actually like - and I think the Ballards are one of the better teams touring the indy circuit these days - but this match just Wasn't. Any. Good. At. All.
CL: Nope. This match also began the trend of the matches which bored me dragging on and on and on.
DJC: I mean, with the Ballards, at the very least you expect them to try to get their opponents' offense over like crazy, but NOPE, not here - if anything, they were on offense most of the time, and offense isn't their strong suit.
CL: The only other time I had seen the Ballards was against Excalibur and Rising Son at MPW, and from these two matches I'm getting the impression that the Ballards are basically willing to go with a team that can go, but they just don't seem able to make inferior wrestlers bring it up to their level. And speaking of inferior wrestlers…
DJC: Of course, it's next to impossible to make Darside's offense look good; he proves very quickly that despite an all-but-identical costume he is not, in fact, Yakuza, for where Yakuza would kick people in the middle of their face, Darkside kicks/punches/whatevers people right in the middle of...the air six inches in front of their face. He threw one clothesline that was so godawful that I laughed out loud to the point where my face hurt. It was seriously the worst clothesline I've ever, ever seen.
CL: Darkside seemed like he was a still-unfinished WPW trainee or something: the only offensive sequence that looked good was the omnipresent Armdrag exchange.
DJC: I will say that Piloto Suicida looked decent, hitting some great dives (notably a MONSTROUS top rope splash) and not fucking anything up to the best of my memory...so he worked less than the valet.
CL: Suicida looked to have potential,
DJC: It should be noted that after logging thousands of hours in the BTM Research and Development Laboratory (i.e. tooling around on Alfredo's site), it was learned that Piloto Suicida is Old. Like, he-was-wrestling-in-semi-mains-in 1989-lucha-start-up-groups old.
CL: but he simply wasn't enough of a factor in the match to where he can be judged relative to the other four, who all logged a hell of a lot more time in the match.
DJC: She, of course, was all over the place; the second half of the match seemed to be almost devoted entirely to her doing stuff, and for the most part it was not of the good (although her Asai moonsault was not in that category). I have no problem with valets who want to wrestle, and if you're going to pick a match to take over, it might as well be a really bad one, but I can't shake the notion that the difference between a valet and a wrestler is the difference between doing one move for emphasis and doing a thousand moves in a desperate attempt to be part of the big show.
CL: The valet seemed like she has about a thousand Lita posters all over her wall, and the Lita action figure, and the T-shirts, and so on. She was very much of the "do highspots and have large fake breasts" school of wrestling.
DJC: Which is ironic since I'm pretty sure she couldn't have been more than 14.
The match itself, then, was just spots and spots and spots, none of which were particularly interesting or compelling. It lost me around the five-minute mark and never picked me back up. 1/4*
CL: I kept waiting for it to snap into Southern Formula mode and have Piloto clean house, but then it turned into Hardyz Formula and the valet started doing stuff.
DJC: Two other things bothered me:
- ON THE SAME DAY as Steve Austin became the most talked-about figure in professional wrestling by beating up his wife, the Ballards become the first in a surprisingly long line of guys tonight to abuse the wo-men folk involved in the show as they nail her with their finisher and pull down her shorts. Now granted, I may be a hypersensitive liberal pinko commie draft-dodgin' hippie or what-have-you, but that strikes me as particularly bad taste, especially when it could have EASILY been avoided.
CL: This seemed more like, sexual harassment with the exception of the finisher, but that's only because this paled in comparison to Messiah's thing.
DJC: - This was the match where I really started to notice that the crowd fucking SUCKED. It was one of those nights where out of like %90 of the audience, everyone wanted to be a comedian. Ergo, you had people yelling out "witty" comments throughout the match, or - most irritating of all - one jackass who would burp really, really loud whenever he thought it was funny.
CL: I believe once it distracted the Ballards as they were setting up for a move.
DJC: That shit ain't cool. Now granted, I'll cop to making jokes with my friends sitting around me when I'm bored by a match, but there's a difference between that and being very conspicuously jackassy - I'm not trying to be part of the show, *especially* not at a show which was overall very, very professional in appearance. And if I ever *do* want to be part of the show, I'll fucking train to be a wrestler. Until then, sit the FUCK down and stop bothering me; I sure didn't pay twenty bucks for an evening at the Improv.
CL: It should also be noted that we are funny. Deal with it.
DJC: I think that we're less funny than abstract, as We Two Dorks are much more likely to be giggling about Noam Chomsky than Hyooj Fake Boobays.
DJC: Post-match, the Cubanitos come out and a three-way beatdown ensues, although the Cubanitos fail to beat anyone into the figurative hospital. Some sort of match is tenatively set up for next time - Cubanitos vs. Ballards? I'd buy that for a dollar.
CL: I saw the post-match thing as more of the Cubanitos punching people in the face for not being entertaining. It was more fun to think of it that way.
B-Boy vs. Tony Kozina
DJC: This was, of course, my first time seeing Kozina, as I don't make it up to Washington as much as I ought to. My impression of him after the match was that he lives up to the hype and at the same time he doesn't.
He is, for instance, a very, very smart, calculating wrestler. I have no idea if the Figure Four is even his finisher, but tonight, WHOA BABY did he ever build to it nicely; the latter half of the match was spent almost entirely going exclusively after B-Boy's knee with kicks, stretching moves, and kneebreakers, and doing his damndest to lock on the Figure Four the whole time. Hell, if anything, he showed up about %90 of this card, including the much-more-pimped regulars; if this match is any indication, Tony Kozina is living proof that really effective psychology doesn't need to be elaborate, a lesson which a bunch of people working around here would do well to take to heart.
That being said, what Kozina didn't bring to the table here was anything particularly novel. Now granted, I'll take a sound match over a flashy one every day of the week and twice on Sundays, but here, Kozina's old-school approach really stuck out. When planning a match, it's important to keep in mind the context of the show it's on; I mean, if you've got something specific that you want to do, it's important to not totally cater to the audience, but at the same time, when you're following up these giant spotfests with a precise technical clinic, the perception of your match is going to suffer in the eyes of people who aren't total Match Quality Jackasses like me, as evidenced by all the mouthbreathers here electing to amuse themselves as they knew best (mostly by contributing their expert analysis, like "HEY KOZINA! YOU'RE A WOP!") instead of watching the match. And especially with matches like these, where the story's so laid out bare to the audience, a lack of crowd heat can really sap the life out of the match (as compared to the RevPro matches from the Dojo II, which had zero crowd-heat but didn't particularly suffer for it).
CL: I wanted to make more of a global comment on this. I remarked right before the finish that if this match had a well-built finish, then I would have liked it more than B-Boy/Joe, which up to that point was the best match I had seen live this year. And I'll stand by it: The work was just as focused, although obviously I've got to concede that Kozina's offense doesn't compare to the Esteemed Mayor of Joetown (Population: Hurt). But if this match had a better finish, in my eyes it would have been a better match, simply because there was that sense of building throughout, and it stayed focused; if you want me to like your indy match and you're not Super Dragon, American Dragon, or Samoa Joe, the damn thing better be tightly worked. This had all the potential to be more consistent going into the finish sequence, as B-Boy/Joe just spent too long shattering each other's vertebrae. But alas, it's kinda silly to spend all this time talking about what happens if this match finishes differently, because it didn't.
DJC: I will say that in terms of getting the crowd into the match, B-Boy did his damndest to cover for Kozina. His selling here was superb at times; once Kozina started working the leg, B-Boy pretty much stopped running, and at times went so far as to be unable to lift Kozina, most notably when he couldn't get him up for the Cross Special. And his offense just keeps getting better and better; I've really started to like his arsenal a lot more now that he's got the Cross Special to build to. Here, he builds to it fairly simply: he spends most of the first half of the match trying to make a very deep hole in the mat with Tony Kozina's head, and then spends the second half of the match trying to pull off his finisher. His main shortcoming in this match - and christ, am I being picky - is that the offense he mounted wasn't as focused as Kozina's. And I mean hell, let's be honest; wrestling anyone other than Tony Kozina when he's putting on a clinic and I'd barely even notice, what with the proliferation of the head-drop as the new punch. But stacked directly up against Kozina, it seems very unchecked. It's sort of like the same sensation you'd get from a 1999 Tatsuhito Takaiwa vs. 1996 Kazuo Yamazaki match - like the first is just kind of doing escalating moves in an effort to put the other guy away, whereas the second has a definite plan of attack. Again, I hate to say it, because B-Boy really did look great tonight, but I mean, put 'em next to each other and one looks definitively more sophisticated than the other.
All of which is bitching which basically exists so that I can justify my rating for a match that otherwise, I thought was really, really good. It's very encouraging to see B-Boy working with someone like Kozina; I think B-Boy is SO CLOSE to being at the upper echelon of indy workers that all he needs to do is broaden his horizons a little and he'll be right there alongside the Dragons. And Kozina is DEFINITELY a change of pace from the wrestlers around here, for better or for worse - and given how impressed I was by him, despite my bitchin', I'd call it better every single day. **3/4
CL: The finish was certainly acceptable, but it just felt too stunted; all of a sudden it just ended.
DJC: Well yeah, all of a sudden they abandoned the work-the-leg steeze and went with the Cross Special. Ergo the feeling of fastness.
CL: I continue to like B-Boy more every time I see him, and I would really like to get my hands on Kozina's stuff with Am Drag that probably exists. If they use this as a springboard to another match down the road where Kozina adds the twist of trying to duck the deadly Cross Special once he senses he's not long for the world, then I'll probably like this more than I do right this minute. But I'm not even sure if Kozina's gonna work SoCal again.
MATCH 4: Christopher Daniels vs. Spanky
DJC: To those of you out there who accuse me of being unable to shut up and enjoy wrestling, I defy you to watch me when Spanky showed up and say the same thimg. I jumped to my feet so fast that my wallet actually slipped out of my pocket, causing a few minutes of frantic scrambling to find it once the lights of reason returned to my eyes.
CL: I was suitably excited when Daniels came out, unannounced to me. I thought he was going to face like, Messiah or something, but then they hit "Quality Control" and there was the MOTHERFUCKING MAN with the MOTHERFUCKING HAT. These two guys are probably more fun to just sit and watch than anyone I've had the pleasure of seeing.
DJC: I loved this match, plain and simple. I know that I don't give the WWF style enough credit - hell, I pretty much don't give it any credit at all - but I will say this for it: formula in the hands of two very athletic, very charismatic workers can be massively entertaining without a whole lot of effort. And that's really all this match was; there wasn't really any long-term selling or deep transitions, but you know what? It worked. This match was all about running a bunch of sequences where they built to the big move, then traded roles, and when that's done this well, I have absolutely zero problem with that.
CL: James kept shooting me down when I suggested there was subtext to it, but it seemed like most of Daniels's big scores were off Suplexes and the like, and Spanky seemed to work off the high-flying sort of stuff (including all manner of Spectacular Flying Head Scissors). It wasn't so much a story as a bit of a style clash. And those can be real fun, too.
DJC: Yeah, but the problem is that when you start accepting those at face value as subtext, you gotta start praising stuff like The Godfather vs. Billy Gunn, 'cause the Godfather's all about strikes and Billy Gunn's all about high-impact slams and drivers. And I, sir, shall do no such thing.
Anyway, as with the first match, the key to these kinds of matches is to KEEP *snap* IT *snap* MOVING, and that's precisely what they did. There was little to no down-time in this match; both guys were always doing SOMETHING, escalating the pace the whole time. I do need to point out that it did feel very segmented overall; the flow of the match was the old tried-and-true "Daniels is in control/Spanky counters a move and is in control/Daniels counters a move and is etc." story, which once you catch on can ruin the flow (since it becomes obvious that the sequences which look like they're building to a finish mean less). But hell, each of those segments were Very Very Entertaining.
CL: I'm not even really sure if there was another match-up on this card that could have had the same type of match, with the same speed and crispness and fun to it.
DJC: If I had to choose, however, I'd say that the Daniels Is On Offense segments were a lot more impressive. The obvious reason, of course, is Spanky's selling. I'm a firm believer in the notion that if you want to get a move over, you call Spanky; hell, I saw him wrestle in TWA and sell moves so well that he became the gold standard, and that was just a few months into his career. Here, he bumped like a GOD; EVERYTHING Daniels did looked devastating as hell, but over the course of the match, Spanky would make it look progressively more devastating.
CL: He sold a backdrop (I think it was a backdrop) so well I can still see the whole image of it. I am so fully on the Spanky bandwagon it ain't healthy.
DJC: But keying on Spanky like this isn't fair to the other guy in the match. Daniels always tends to look good in these kinds of matches because he's got so many moves that he can work towards, and as a result the match doesn't get boring when he hits his big move early, the other guy kicks out, and that's all we get over and over again for the rest of the match.
I think that if I could fix anything about this match, it's that I'd have liked a deeper finishing sequence; it felt kinda like Spanky was on offense, then suddenly hit the Sliced Bread #2 (which, incidentally, may be the best finisher name in wrestling today) and the match was over. But hey, what they did was A-O-K by me. **
Somewhere in here Paul T. cut a heatseeker promo, and for the most part I don't care. He did mention something about being hardcore...dumdumDUMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM...
CL: Yeah, so I had seen Paul T. cut one of the Worst Promos I had ever seen on XPW TV once, and this wasn't as bad, but yeah, he should be kept away from live microphones.
MATCH 5: NOSAWA vs. Arkangel De La Muerte
DJC: I think they might have bit off a little more than they could chew with this one. The early parts of this match were really pretty decent, but this match went to shit very, very suddenly, right about immediately afte AdlM did his repeated rope-run legdrop (?) spot and the match lost all direction. NOSAWA actually showed me quite a decent bit here; he sold pretty effectively and got over AdlM's stuff quite nicely. He seems to be the type of guy who's made to flesh out undercards, because he can probably make people look great and get the audience into the match pretty easily, but gets lost when you try to do more complex stuff.
CL: Arkangel's repeated insistence on using the People's Leg Drop was pretty much the wheels of my attention falling right off; especially after the last two matches had held me pretty well. I can't remember the second half of this match, mostly because of the intense low and intense high which followed.
DJC: Other than that, I really don't have much to say about this match; once it lost its direction, they didn't even seem to try to get it back. Basically, this is a great example of one of those "So I went to a wrestling show and Every Match Ever broke out" matches - not really too bad or anything, but not anything that sticks in your mind as soon as both guys go behind the curtain. 3/4*
And then Hardkore Kid shows up to protest to complain about Paul T.'s use of the word "hardcore", and before a fully in-depth discussion of the etymology and proper usage of the term can break out, out comes New Jack to hit him with stuff and staple things onto him. I...don't like hardcore wrestling at all, so to to be perfectly honest I didn't watch this. I will admit that I glanced upwards every so often, and saw Hardkore spraying blood like a fire hydrant and New Jack stapling the buck onto his head, but other than that, I could have lived my whole life and never seen this.
CL: I had to get up to leave during the middle of this. It just made me feel uncomfortable. Which brings me to Sign of a Different Crowd #3: A whole lot of people really fucking loved this. I guess that's cool for them, but it made me feel real weird having to leave during the middle of it while everyone else was seeing their ECW Arena dreams come true in the bleeding forehead of Hardkore Kidd. As I walked back after it had ended (or so I thought), I walked past HK, who was still dripping blood off his forehead. I wasn't really sure whether to say I was sorry or that he was a dumbass, so I didn't say anything. I guess it was his decision to do it, but it kinda bothers me that it was even there to do in the first place. Anyhow, then it got good.
DJC: But then - BUT MOTHER FUCKING GOD DAMN FUCKING MOTHER FUCKING THEN - New Jack grabs the stick, and the Greatest Promo In The Universe breaks out. NJ spends - what? fifteen? minutes? - RRRRRRRRRRRRRRRIPPING into XPW, which is the easiest way to a face turn with James Cobo in the universe. He calls Rob Black a "cocksucking motherfucker" repeatedly, and it STILL ISN'T ENOUGH FOR ME. And when he gets on to the stuff about ECW selling out the GOA in one try, and XPW failing to do it every single time, well, there you go.
CL: I suppose your enjoyment of this promo is equivalent to your hatred of Rob Black; again my relative lack of indy knowledge comes into play, as I just haven't been as bothered by XPW as some. I just never really gave a shit about it, or about Rob Black.
DJC: Fuck, I've never even seen an episode of XPW TV, unlike some of us here. But Rob Black is the biggest cancer on the wrestling industry today, and I say that in full knowledge of the fact that Vince Russo exists. Rob Black puts on wrestling shows with zero wrestling. Rob Black fakes a heart attack, passes it off as being real, holds a vigil for himself, and then allegedly uses the footage for an angle. Rob Black nearly lets his workers be BURNED TO DEATH IN HIS RING. The formula is simple: I love wrestling, therefore I hate Rob Black.
CL: So essentially this was like a profane lecture on environmental awareness for me: Really long, really passionate, in complete command of the audience, but altogether uninteresting to me. But I would come around yet.
DJC: And then - AND MOTHER FUCKING THEN - he brings up Messiah, and how he got fired for - quote - "layin' the ding dong" to Lizzy Borden, and oh my sweet lord god, I lost it. I fucking LOST IT.
So you'd think this couldn't get any better, but NOOOOOOO - he brings out BOB MF'N BARNETT to capture the Check Which Doth Bounce for posterity. I weakly attempt to start a "Fuck the Skipper" chant, but all to no avail as I realize that (a) four people in the audience would get it, and (b) I'd be a gigantic hypocrite, but hey, I made the effort.
CL: I would like to note that it WAS MEEEEEEEEEEE who suggested some sort of Skipper Reference when Barnett came out,
DJC: Yet there you sat, silent as a stone. I AM THE IMPETUS FOR EVERYTHING GOOD EVER.
CL: although the only people there who I've even ever seen at the Other Arena are Myself, James, Rev, and Crast (and Barnett, but obviously). Either way, it was getting rather surreal at this point. I think the people with us were looking at us kinda odd for being so amused with the check, but fuck 'em. This ruled a whole lot.
DJC: And anyway, they capture the check on film for all the universe to see, and the segment winds to a profanity-laden end as New Jack - NEW JACK, ladies and gentlemen - brings two little kids up on stage to do the X sign...and one of them fucks it up. I swear to god, I've never laughed so hard in my life. Who'd'a thunk that all it takes to make the GREATEST NON-WRESTLING SEGMENT EVER IN THE HISTORY OF TIME is a canceled check, the phrase "layin' the ding-dong", and New Jack proving that he's doing it all for the kids?
CL: When he called the two little white kids on stage after spending fifteen minutes cursing out the owner of a porn company, the infamous Dreidel incident from MPW became the Second Funniest thing I had ever seen at a Wrestling show. That wasn't just surreal, that was like, the Melting Clock of Wrestling Promos.
DJC: Oh, fuck it - I can't resist.
from Home Depot: $15.
DJC: Intermission, and rightfully so. I am still shaking with laughter from the last segment. Any time New Jack wants to show up on a wrestling show and cut one of THOSE interviews, I am ALL MOTHERFUCKING FOR IT.
CL: As long as the kids are brought up, I will be happy. I think they had to take the intermission there, because there are certain things you simply cannot top, and that was one of them. It would have been like the Main Event was for me: the match might have been fine, but the senses were still recovering from the last thing.
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