Tagged: Eric Ryan

Beyond Wrestling and St. Louis Anarchy: Double Trouble Review

Featuring: ACH, Johnny Gargano, Eric Corvis, Jonny Mangue, Chase Brunett, Zane Silver, Matthew Justice, The Pitboss, The Hate Junkies, dany only, Strknyn, Arik Canon, Darin Corbin, Christian Rose, The Submission Squad, Evan Gelistico, Gary Jay, Pierre Abernathy, Dale Patricks, Remi Wilkins, Heidi Lovelace, Nate Stone, Reed Bentley, Tripp Cassidy, Davey Vega, Eric Ryan, The Kentucky Buffet, Alex Castle, Matt Cage, The Hooligans, Devin Cutter, Mason Cutter, Mark Angel, Drew Gulak, Aaron Epic, Pinkie Sanchez, Sugar Dunkerton, The Slaughterhouse, KJ Crush, Maserati Rick, Tony Banks, Rickey Shane Page, Dan Walsh, Johnny Cockstrong, RD Evans

Available on DVD for $12 hereMP4 for $12 here, VOD for $10 here.

Photos Courtesy Wayne Palmer 

On the day that their purchase of Women Superstars Uncensored was confirmed, Beyond Wrestling ventured to Absolute Intense Wrestling’s stomping ground, Turners Hall in Cleveland, in Ohio. But instead of AIW, they had a different dancing partner, in the form of St. Louis Anarchy. The mid-west cousins of Austin’s ACW had perhaps their biggest platform yet for this show. Did Beyond and SLA dare to try and one up AIW on their home turf? Indeed, they dared.

1. Eric Corvis [+11], Jonny Mangue [+2] & Team Beyond (Chase Burnett [-7] & Zane Silver [-3]) vs. Matthew Justice [-1], The Pitboss [+7] & The Hate Junkies (dany only [+4] & Stryknyn [+2]) – Team Beyond versus Team Kill Everyone In Beyond, essentially. Pitboss is facing his former Doom Patrol stablemate, Jonny Mangue, with some new, more like-minded partners in Justice and The Hate Junkies. Prior to this Mangue had helped Pitboss and Chris Dickinson make life hell for Corvis, Brunett, and Silver, but the “Smooth Savage” changed his ways this year and worked with his former rivals.

The match started with a big brawl that spilled to the outside very quick. Team Beyond got the early advantage, but the storm was weathered, and dany only puts his team in control. The “Shitboss”… sorry, Pitboss (only reporting what was chanted) continued to work over Zane Silver, but after a few minutes, Silver made the tag to Eric Corvis. After losing the advantage, the wrestlers at ringside got Corvis back in it by singing the Rocky theme.

Later on Mathew Justice, Pitboss and the Hate Junkies found themselves stacked up together, when Zane Silver dropkicked off the top rope onto all of them in a unique moment. dany only then created another one by suplexing Burnett into a DDT on his own partner Silver. After another melee, Justice caught Corvis with a low blow, and hit two DVDs into the corner on him for the win. A good opening contest, a bit crazy in places, but it had a nice flow. Johnny Cockstrong noted on commentary that The Beasts had a 200lb combined advantage on their opponents, and it ultimately told.

2. Arik Cannon [0], Darin Corbin [0] & Christian Rose [0] vs. The Submission Squad (Evan Gelistico [0], Gary Jay [-2] & Pierre Abernathy [-1]) – Cannon’s team came out to B.o.B, which Rose noted was not the song they originally intended to come out to. The Submission Squad were looking for a great performance here, with two of the members on losing records going in.

Things were off to a rough start for the Squad when even the referee found himself bodyslamming Gary Jay. As this is a St. Louis Anarchy match, and therefore competed under Anarchy Rules, the match continued. Then there was gigantic showdown between “Big Daddy” Pierre Abernathy and “Ginger Madness” Darin Corbin, and then there was the the usual slo-mo sequence (which Robert Evans, on commentary, followed suit in slo-mo calling). The Squad then took control and Evan “Kick the World” Gelistico pretty much took Christian “Born to Hurt” Rose’s face off. Appropriate. Arik Cannon (the Dastardly Urban Fiend as Evans put it) put down his PBR long enough to come in and run riot all over the Submission Squad. Things then went bonzo gonzo, and Jay used a break in the confusion to pull Cannon’s tights for the pin, and earning a huge win for the Submission Squad.

3. School Of Roc Tag Team Sole Survivor Elimination Match: Dale Patricks [0], Remi Wilkins [0] & Heidi Lovelace [0] vs. Nate Stone [0], Reed Bentley [0] & Tripp Cassidy [0] – Availible in its entirety above, this was a sole survivor elimination match: once a team is completely eliminated, the remaining members of the other team must wrestle each other until there is one winner. A sort of mini Cibernetico. Continue reading

AIW: Girls’ Night Out 5

If the incredibly talented roster, amazing matches and awesome fans aren’t reasons enough to love Cleveland’s greatest wrestling promotion, Absolute Intense Wrestling, the fact that they regularly put on a women’s centric wrestling show should just about do it. In its Girls Night Out series, AIW brings the very best female wrestlers to compete in Cleveland, ranging from up-and-coming talents like Miss Heidi, K.C. and Latasha all the way to established ring veterans like the incomparable Sara Del Rey.

Fany promotions, in spite of a wealth of popular, skilled talent available don’t even book a single woman’s match at any given show, much less bank an entire show around women wrestling. AIW is the company that does this. And they have done this five times.

Let’s take a look at what kind of awesomeness they had prepared (and believe you me, awesomeness was brought).

Note: If you don’t want to be spoiled, you can download and watch the DVD of this show right now here in MP4 format at Smart Mark Video (or order the DVD). Then come back and check out Wayne Palmer’s awesome pictures.

AIW: Girls’ Night Out 5

January 29th, 2012
Cleveland, OH

a. The Chad defeated The Duke with The Mercy Kill – The night started with three pre-show matches, all dude wrestlers (known as “Guys Night Out”). In the first, The Chad, with Chest Flexor Industries (including Dave Potato in a laugh-inducing neck brace, clearly showing the ill effects a pissed-off Johnny Gargano had on his health) met The Duke in a Hell On Earth rematch.

It was a solid matchup, comprised mostly of holds and grappling and the occasional chop for good measure. Duke held most of the control throughout, right up until Dave the Mashed Potato got all in the ref’s business so Chad could get in a sick Mercy Kill on Duke for the win.

b. Louis Lyndon defeated Façade – FI stayed ringside and waited for Lyndon, who the crowd greeted with a “You sold out” chant.

Façade and Lyndon were all over this ring with some really solid back and forth, perhaps led slightly by Façade with some huge kicks and an excellent springboard moonsault. Lyndon had some nice kicks for himself, and then there was Flexxor’s crew interfering at every other opportunity, trying to distract Façade or the ref.

It looked like Façade had this one down, but somehow Lyndon managed to sneak in out of nowhere for a roll-up and pin Façade for three. He always seems to get those sneaky pins that you never realize until his music hits and you’re going “Wait… what? When did that happen?”

c. Eric Ryan defeated Rickey Shane Page via submission with the Koji Clutch – This match started out with such a loud and equally split chant for both guys that they had to stop and stare at the loudest region of the audience. When they finally did start the match, the action absolutely did not let up for one second.

Eric Ryan was everywhere, leaping off turnbuckles for moonsaults and a seriously excellent coast-to-coast towards the end. Of course, RSP is a boss and didn’t let that stop him, even going so far as to actually catch Ryan in midair during that moonsault and countering with slams left and right

Ryan’s more than just flashy leaps though, as he utilized numerous submission maneuvers throughout, and while RSP did his best to stand up out of Ryan’s holds, but was unable, giving him the win.

Spectacular match. Can’t go wrong with these two.

Afterwards, Eric Ryan took the mic and challenged Shiima Xion for the Absolute Title at Gauntlet for the Gold in March, so that should be awesome.

After a brief interlude, Girls’ Night Out proper started in full.

1. Marti Belle defeated Mia Yim with an Angel’s Wings – Chest Flexor Industries were out at ringside, yet again, looking out for Mia Yim. Not that she needed any help, as she spent a comfortable amount of time kicking Marti Belle all around the ring. Marti didn’t take that for very long, and back just as hard with some seriously huge kicks of her own, not to mention some awesome slams and a seriously gorgeous ‘rana, which helped her secure the win.

It was quite surprising to see a match involving CFI and no interference. I guess it was a test for Mia, one she failed. After the match Louis Lyndon and Flexor himself climbed into the ring to berate Mia for losing to Marti, eventually holding her as Allysin Kay, another CFI member and all-around badass lady (as will be evidenced later) yelled at her and then smacked her across the face. Mia was dragged backstage and the tone was set for the rest of the show.

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AIW: Nightmare Before X-Mas Live Report

Photos courtesy Wayne Palmer

Absolute Intense Wrestling’s fifth annual Nightmare Before X-Mas show, while not implicitly Christmas-themed, did have its fair share of presents, surprises and joy. Most notably in the form of surprise visits from Jason Gory and Matt Cross, not one but TWO Colt Cabana matches, ACH’s first (and please, not last!) AIW appearance, showings from both Beyond Wrestling and St. Louis Anarchy, and Dave “Potato Dawson” getting the ever-loving crap beat out of him by Johnny Gargano. And that is only the tip of the pro-wrestling iceberg.

There were two pre-show matches, both of which I arrived in plenty of time to see and document properly this time.

A. Luis Diamante defeated Jason Gory – The first pre-show match saw Luis Diamante, representing Da Latin Crime Syndicate against surprise visitor Jason Gory, representing the Dead Wrestler Society from PWO. Gory got a pretty solid reaction on his way out to the ring, as I think we were all pretty surprised to see him there. The match itself wasn’t terribly long but had a lot of solid action, including some big top-rope moves from Gory. Unfortunately, one of those top-rope moves cost Gory the win when Diamante moved out of Gory’s landing zone.

B. Jarek 1:20 defeated Mazerati Rick – It was recently announced that AIW and Beyond have entered into a partnership; talent from Beyond will be at all future AIW shows. I for one am very excited about this. This particular show saw obvious crowd favorite Jarek 1:20 take on Mazerati Rick. Jarek spent most of the match having the heck beat out of him by Rick. Jarek only gained the upper hand after yelling “TIME FREEZE” while Rick was on crouched on the top turnbuckle. This froze everyone in the ring minus Jarek himself. He hauled himself to his feet, caught his breath, and turned time on again. Instead of laying helplessly on the mat, he dropkicked Rick in midair and pinned him for three. I cannot get over my love for Jarek’s magician persona and the way he plays it.

1. The Duke defeated Jock Sampson via countout – The show proper opened with Jock Sampson’s in-ring debut against The Duke. He stepped into the ring with a rope, cowbells and a chorus of boos. He took the mic for a moment just to threaten to kill everyone’s family if anyone started a “Galifianakis” chant. Naturally, a “Galifianakis” chant started almost immediately. The Duke came out shortly thereafter. It didn’t take much action for Galifian—I mean Sampson to exit the ring and attempt to run away like a bitch. Duke wouldn’t let him things continued at ringside, though it lead to Duke getting thrown into the barricade. Sampson hopped into the ring and onto the turnbuckle to announce that “I am the best of all time!” to which the crowd responded by starting an even more insulting look-a-like chant. Sampson tried to keep his momentum going with a big leap off the top rope, but Duke was able to move out of the way. Duke came back with a spinebuster and then sent Sampson over the rope with a lariat. Jock Sampson pouted at ringside and got counted out. He then grabbed his rope and cowbells and took after Duke with them. After beating him up for a few moments, Husk—I mean Sampson went on the mic to complain that he actually won the match, because throwing him over the top rope was a disqualification. He called us a bunch of virgins as a final salvo and stomped backstage.

2. ACH, Mat Fitchett, and Davey Vega defeated The Submission Squad (Evan Gelistico, Gary Jay, and Pierre Abernathy) – St. Louis Anarchy Offer Match – This was one of the matches I was most looking forward to. It took exactly one match to turn me into an ACH fan, which was him versus AR Fox at Beyond. If you haven’t seen that match yet, what are you doing here, go watch it. I’ll wait.

Just based on that one match alone I knew we were going to be in for a treat. Putting him with Fitchett and Vega, however, was perfection. ACH was a boss with the hugest leap I’ve ever seen in my life. And I don’t mean distance, although he did make it most of the way to the other side of the ring, but I mean height. I mean really high. I mean ten feet into the air and if that’s an exaggeration, it’s not by much.

Fitchett was also pretty boss, though he spent a great deal of time getting kicked around by various members of the Submission Squad and being victimized by “Stiff Ginger” Gary Jay’s particularly sharp chops. He had a gorgeous Fosbury Flop onto everybody at ringside and a beautiful Shooting Star Press towards the end of the match. That, in conjunction with ACH’s gigantic Frog Splash, lead the good guys to victory .

I’ve only recently become aware of the St. Louis Anarchy company, and I have to tell you, I’ve never been more sad that I don’t live in Missouri.

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AIW: Hell on Earth 7

Photos courtesy Wayne Palmer

Hell on Earth. An apt name for a show that takes place on Black Friday. Whether you woke up at midnight to fight with the throngs of early shoppers, slept off a turkey coma, or, like some of us, actually had to work, I think we can all agree that there is no better way to end the day than with some fantastic wrestling. AIW certainly delivered on that account.

The seventh annual Hell on Earth show featured 12 matches, plus two pre-show matches. One was a four way scramble, which AERO! won, and the second was a Beyond Wrestling offer match featuring “The Human Hand-Grenade” dany only and Nick Talent.

Unfortunately, as I came to this show almost immediately after work, I missed both of these pre-show matches. I’m sure they were both great.

Earlier in the week, AIW announced that the company had been sold to an unnamed person. This person turned out to be Matt Wadsworth, who took the mic to start off the show proper. It seemed like he had the mic for a while when I came in. Of course, being the new owner and acting president, I’m sure it was very important for Wadsworth to lay down a baseline for what his ownership would entail, but blah blah blah whatever I just want to see some wrestling.

Eric Ryan defeated Façade and Samuray Del Sol – Ryan and Façade started the action off strong. Façade had a ton of breathtaking flips and leaps throughout, not to mention a great Huracanrana. Ryan was trying everything to keep Façade out of the air, including several cracking arm drags.

At one point the brawl ended up out of the ring and all way backstage. Façade came out with a chair and was followed by Samaray Del Sol, turning this match into a three-way contest. Del Sol added an additional level of awesomeness and danger with his own top rope leaping antics, much to the delight of the crowd, who broke into a rousing, “Holy Shit!” chant.

Eric Ryan was able to secure the win after taking down Del Sol with a massive powerbomb.

This was an epic, amazing opener and set the bar high for the rest of the show.

Da Latin Crime Syndicate defeated The Olsen Twins – This match didn’t even make it to the ring at first. It broke into two separate fights on opposite sides of the arena, one of which happened to be right in front of me (I saw a member of LCS get hit with a trashcan from about two feet away).

Eventually the separate fights made it into the ring and congealed into an actual wrestling match. Two other members of LCS came out to observe, participate, and cheat, making it something of a handicap match.

The Syndicate had most of the control during the match, naturally, though Jimmy Olsen managed to turn the tides once he finally got tagged in. Between him and Colin, they managed to slam and otherwise maneuver the whole of LCS into various compromising sexual positions, namely faces in crotches.

However, after a series of double team moves culminating in a big powerbomb, LCS came out entirely on top.

LCS went backstage while the Olsen twins called for beers in the ring. They toasted, drank… and then Jimmy smacked Colin in the head with his beer, and then spat on him. The crowd was stunned.

Great, albeit crazy match, with a shocking (and depressing) tag team split.

Josh Prohibition defeated Gregory Iron – This was a really good, fast-paced bout. Greg Iron was all over the ring with tons of huge moves and out of the ring with a nice suicide leap. Despite Iron’s efforts, Prohibition had most of the control in the match and eventually won.

Oddly enough, the crowd seemed almost entirely behind Prohibition. On one hand, I could see how they could feel that way with Greg Iron’s campaign to leave the loyal AIW fans and join another promotion for their next big event – but on the other hand… how can you root against Greg Iron?!

The Chad defeated The Duke by DQ – Unfortunately, the bulk of this match took place on the floor and in the audience on the exact opposite side of the ring from which I was sitting. Judging from what I could see and the reactions of that side of the crowd, it sounded like a pretty decent brawl going on.

Jock Sampson (whose entrance was greeted with chants of “Galifianakis!”) ran out from the back and attacked the Duke, causing the ref to call for the bell.

Jock Sampson does bear a passing resemblance to the one man wolf pack.

Intense Title Match – Bobby Beverly (c) defeated Izeah Bonds to retain

This match also featured a ringside brawl that I couldn’t see, but fortunately it didn’t last too long and they brought it all into the ring for some good action.

Izeah Bonds was all around impressive and brought out some incredible moves including an enormous off the rope leap, a back handspring, a backflip and a giant top rope moonsault.

And if he had landed that moonsault, he might have won the title. As it was, Bobby Beverly moved out of the way in time and took advantage of Bonds’ rough landing to get the pin and keep his belt.

AIW Tag Team Title Match: Aeroform [Louis Lyndon and Flip Kendrick] defeats The Irish Airborne (c) [Dave and Jake Crist] to win the titles

Aeroform is always a treat to watch and I was especially excited to see them against the Irish Airborne. You can’t go wrong with two teams that have versions of “air” in their name.

It was also interesting to see Aeroform use more under-handed tactics, since previously I had only seen them behave in a squeaky clean manner. They cheated often and enlisted ringside help from their associate Chest Flexor.

As expected, the match was full of amazing high-flying and everybody had at least one stand-out moment. Dave Crist leapt off the top rope and managed to land on his feet at ringside. Flip Kendrick had a beautiful hurricanrana, and Jake Crist got incredible air with a Frog Splash.

However, it was ringside interference from Chest Flexor which allowed Aeroform to get the win for the Tag Team titles. Jake Crist got on the mic and demanded a rematch right then and there, but Aeroform said no. To which the crowd responded with a very loud “PUSSY!” chant. Wadsworth then came out, walked over to the ring… and then right past it, disappearing into the back. He returned moments later, took the mic and said that the Irish Airborne would have to work back up the ranks for their rematch. The Airborne then chased Aeroform out of the ring and into the back.

Definitely a great match, though I think it might have been just a hair better if Aeroform had spent more time being awesome and not cheating every three seconds. Oh well, what do you expect from Flexor Industries?

Uhaa Nation defeated AR Fox

I knew this match was going to be awesome, and I was not disappointed in the slightest. Fox and Nation met in the ring to an equally split crowd. AR Fox wowed with his unique mix of high-flying and near-death experiences, most notably leaping over the rope, only to be  caught mid-air and slammed back-first into the edge of the apron by Nation.

Nation of course was full of big, powerful, stunning moves, like the aforementioned slam, a massive kick to the midsection of AR Fox and the beautiful standing moonsault he used to get the win.

On an aside, could you imagine a match between Izeah Bonds and Uhaa Nation? They’d tear the ring apart.

Anyhow, the match was amazing as predicted, and the crowd was utterly in love from start to finish.

Four-Way Elimination: Tim Donst defeated  Marion Fontaine, Rickey Shane Page, and Johnny Gargano – About a week earlier, AIW had announced that Page had been seriously injured, so when Eric Ryan came out to replace him, I was not terribly surprised.

I was surprised, however, when Rickey Shane Page came out right behind him and stepped into the ring. So I’m not sure if that was some kind of ruse or if he managed to recover enough to be able to compete, but either way, I’m glad he made it in.

Johnny Gargano and Marion Fontaine started off the match. Immediately after locking up, Fontaine took it upon himself to waltz Gargano around the ring. A bit later he took it upon himself again to pirouette atop a flattened Tim Donst. Fontaine also showed off his grace with this sort of helicopter-headscissors-spinning thing, though Donst was a terrible dance partner and countered with a powerbomb.

Thereafter, Johnny Gargano blew everyone away with this monster superplex to both Rickey Shane Page and Tim Donst. That was followed by RSP’s attempted a suicide dive, which landed him only on a bunch of chairs (it took place on the other side of the ring from me, again, but it sounded gnarly.)

The first two eliminations were Fontaine by Gargano and Page by Donst, leaving Donst and Gargano to duke it out for a few minutes. Gargano hit Donst but the evil ref Dave “The Potato” refused to count to three, to the extreme displeasure of the crowd and Gargano. Donst got up, beat Gargano around a little and got him for a fast count pin.

The crowd was not pleased, to make a dramatic understatement.

I’d count this match among one of the best of the night. The action was incredible, but the ending was ruined by that crooked ref.

AIW Women’s Title: Mickie Knuckles (c) defeated Mia Yim to retain. Special guest ref Gail Kim presided.

The brunt of this match had lots of banter and posturing between the ladies which made the pace seem a little slow, but there certainly were more than a few awesome moments.

Yim’s kicks to Mickie were all incredibly stiff, just for starters. She also performed a really great Sky Twister Press from the top rope, though unfortunately it missed. Mickie had some throws, and they each got a solid German suplex from the other. Mickie retained her title after hitting Yim with a strong slam.

Gail Kim got into the action after the bell was rung, calling Chest Flexor out for, again, his interference. She kicked the crap out of both him and Mia Yim to uproarious applause. I was disappointed her match with Hailey Hatred was cancelled, but it was cool to see her wrestle even for those few brief moments.

Shiima Xion defeated BJ Whitmer to retain the Absolute Title – Whitmer started the action out strong by trying to break the ring with Xion’s back. He then contorted Xion into a series of gorgeous holds. Xion decided he wasn’t having any of this and limped backstage with various members of Chest Flexor Industries, who had been milling about ringside. Obviously Whitmer wasn’t going to stand for this and dragged Xion right back into the ring.

Xion decided he did want to be in the match after all, and came back by slamming Whitmer’s face into a chair, then flipped him over the barrier into the crowd. When they made it back into the ring, Xion sent a missile dropkick into Whitmer’s face, and a little later got him with a beautiful moonsault.

Chest Flexor Industries were still ringside, and interfered, leading to referee Jake Clemmons getting knocked out. He was carried backstage and a second ref, Dave the Potato (also known as the crooked ref from the four-way) came out and refused to count Whitmer’s pin, preferring to fake-tie his shoe.

A third ref came out and finally counted three on Xion, but Flexor put Xion’s foot on the rope. The match continued until Xion got a pin on Whitmer, holding him by his tights out of view of the ref.

Johnny Gargano came out of the back with a chair, and Matt Wapdsworth took to the mic to announce a match for the next AIW show, Nightmare before X-mas: Johnny Gargano vs. Crooked Ref Dave the Potato.

MASADA defeated Mad Man Pondo in a Hell on Earth Bloody Damned Massacre – Implements of destruction brought out prior to the start of the match: fluorescent light bulbs, several boxes of glass Christmas ornaments, a stop sign, a light up plastic Santa Clause decoration, a sledgehammer and cutlery.

Implements of destruction utilized over the course of the match: all of the above, plus chairs, tables, cinderblocks, wooden skewers and baseball bats wrapped in barbed wire.

This can’t even properly be called a match; this was a massacre. Both men ended up covered in blood and glass shards, as did the ring and the arena.

Memorable moments include: Pondo giving MASADA the lowest of low blows with a light tube, Pondo again detonating a cinderblock on MASADA’s crotch with a sledgehammer, and a chair literally being broken over the back of the Pondo. At least I think it was Pondo, I might have been too busy cringing to take proper notes.

MASADA ended this bloodbath after throwing the Mad Man on a table and then leaping on him. Twice. Because the table didn’t break the first time (it may have been imported from Japan). Then he dragged Pondo into the ring and drove a solid handful of wooden skewers into his head. Where they stayed, through the pin, and through Pondo’s speech at the end.

Nine hours of work, several cups of coffee, and two energy drinks culminating in a nineteen hour day. I thought I was going to be exhausted; instead I was up on my feet screaming my lungs out, jumping up and down. Hell on Earth my day might have been, but the wrestling was absolutely worth every bleary eyed, ass-dragging moment leading up to it. And all that money I spent on energy drinks.

One final thing I’d like to point out: One of the things I really love about AIW is the crowd. There is nothing better than being in a crowd full of raucous, obnoxious wrestling fans watching awesome wrestling. After seeing Hell on Earth, I can honestly say that AIW does both of these things extremely well. If you’re in or around Cleveland, they are absolutely worth your time and your money. If you aren’t, they’re still worth your money and Smart Mark Video has your back.

Until then, enjoy over 800 photos below the cut!

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AAW: Defining Moment 2011 Photos

Earlier this month Chicago’s AAW put on its Defining Moment event and it proved to be the best AAW show I’ve seen to date. Every match was good and there were numerous memorable moments: Keith Walker redefined “Beast Mode” in a savage performance. Jimmy Jacobs scored the most brutal choke out I’ve seen this side of Portia Perez, bringing back memories of the old, violent Jimmy we knew and feared. Gregory Iron and Michael Elgin continued to take steps to prove they’ve got “next” on the wrestling scene.

The massive pre-SHIMMER six women tag was thoroughly entertaining. and featured then Champion and #1 Ranked Wrestler in the World, Madison Eagles. There was mist and betrayal and a reverse Frankensteiner that wiped the champ out for the last several minutes. SHIMMER faithful suffered more tragedy as The Awesome Threesome lost their titles in an impromptu three-way match. Alex Shelley (CLAP-CLAP-CLAPCLAPCLAP) brought his old school ROH A-Game in a losing effort to Shane Hollister (whom more people should be talking about). The ending screamed for a rematch. “Classic” Colt Cabana put a smile on everyone’s face, but the always dour Silas Young kept the gold.

All in all, really good, fun show. We look forward to where AAW goes next (hopefully it’s more Alex Shelley vs Shane Hollister matches). Enjoy the photos by GregChris, and myself.

AAW: Defining Moment

September 30th, 2011
Berwyn Eagles Club – Berwyn, IL

A. Dan the Man, Benjamin Boone and El Tigre Gordo defeated Lil Waylon, Matt Morris, and Matt Knicks
B. Jun Tago defeated Markus Crane

1. CLASH (Tommy Treznik & Cameron Skyy) and Keith Walker defeated Zero Gravity (Brett Gakiya & CJ Esparza) and Samuray Del Sol when Walker hit a lariat on Del Sol

2. Jimmy Jacobs defeated Jesse Emerson with the “End Time”

3. Four Way: Gregory Iron defeated Ashley Sixx, Bobby Beverly, and Eric Ryan with a roll up on Ryan

4. Michael Elgin defeated Arik Cannon with a Spiral Powerbomb after Jimmy Jacobs got involved

5. Six Woman Tag: Madison Eagles, Sassy Stephanie,  and Mena Libra defeated MsChif, Jessie McKay, Nevaeh when Mena pinned MsChif after Nevaeh turned on her team

6. AAW Heritage Title Match: Mason Beck (c) defeated Louis Lyndon with the Beck Mountain Bomb

Triple Threat AAW Tag Team Title Match: The Irish Airborne (Jake Crist & Dave Crist) d. The NorthStache Express (Darin Corbin & Marion Fontaine) and Awesome Threesome (Knight Wagner & Jordan McIntyre)  to become the new champions

7. Shane Hollister defeated Alex Shelley with an illegal roll up

8. AAW Heavyweight Title: Silas Young (c) defeated Colt Cabana

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Review: Beyond Wrestling – All Dude Review and High Five Academy

Featuring: Corvis Fear, Chris Dickinson, Chris Dickinson, Hailey Hatred, Christian Faith, Vincent Nothing, Jonny Mangue, Sean Maluta, Chase Burnett, Zane Silver, Eric Ryan, Bobby Beverly, Louis Lyndon, Flip Kendrick, Luis Diamante, Joey The Snake, Denver Colorado

DVD available from SmartMarkVideo.com – $15.00

One of the benefits of being a forward looking company is that even your older material can appear timely and relevant. That is the case with Beyond Wrestling‘s latest release, a double disc set of All Dude Review and High Five Academy. Taped over a year and a half ago, the DVD features several matches that were not only good, but significant to the history of Beyond and precursors to some trends seen throughout today.

Although the company has begun producing traditional live wrestling events, Beyond’s initial concept was to present a show by wrestlers for wrestlers. There were no fans in the audience and grapplers fought how they wanted for as long as they wanted. Wrestlers were given full creative freedom to express themselves in the ring, to be judged only by their peers in attendance. This lead to some great performances, but left the company light on narratives. That changed with these tapings. Here we see exactly what began the Clark Kent/Lex Luthor-like eternal, company consuming feud between Chris Dickinson and Corvis Fear. It is essential viewing for Beyond fans, but what makes this release relevant on a wrestling wide scale though, are the three matches with Hailey Hatred.

Since these shows occurred, Hailey has ascended to the top of the Joshi Puroresu scene. She’s captured numerous titles, most notably the JWP Open-Weight Championship, the most prestigious women’s title in Japan. Seeing a Japanese star in a still growing US promotion is pretty interesting in its own right, but the matches themselves were spectacular. Hailey appears in three bouts: against Chris Dickinson, Louis Lyndon and Corvis Fear. Yes, all men and including the two top guys in Beyond. In the past year companies like RCW, ACW, and CHIKARA in the US, as well as companies like SMASH and FREEDOMS in Japan, have put on big matches featuring some of the top women in the country against their top male athletes. Beyond Wrestling got in on the ground floor of  this movement, with some of the grittiest inter-gender matches you’ll see.

Hailey Hatred vs Chris Dickinson is the first match on All Dude Review, and the best bout on either show. It was brilliant to put Hailey and Dickinson against one another. Dickinson is a hard-hitting, hard-kicking, hard-chopping no-nonsense striker. Hailey was the first woman in Beyond, and she prides herself on being a pretty big badass as well (in fact she outsized Dickinson). There was a lot of tension at the start of this match. Some of the wrestlers surrounding ringside weren’t very fond of Hailey and, frankly, wanted to see Dickinson kick the shit out of her. In the early going both focused on mat wrestling and Dickinson actually held back on delivering strikes. This was met with taunts from the crowd, and Hailey who wanted to be treated like any other wrestler. That’s when things got nuts.

Dickinson “snapped” and wailed on Hailey with sick chops and kicks, causing the crowd of wrestlers to leave their seats, screaming and pounding on the mat. Hailey was no pushover though. She took everything Dickinson had and gave it back to him in the form of her signature head-kicks and brain scrambling suplexes. The match seemed to just get more brutal over time, with Hailey’s Cut Throat Backdrop driver being answered with a deadlift Lyger Bomb. The reactions of the audience made what happened in the ring seem even more insane. While gender was a factor going on, eventually the match turned into just two brutal wrestlers giving their all against one another. It was fantastic. You will rarely ever see a match like this anywhere, and it alone is probably worth the price of the DVD.

Besides unique match ups like Hailey and Dickinson, Beyond also gives opportunities for a lot of younger wrestlers to perform without the pressure of a live wrestling crowd or limitations on their matches. At times, this environment drives them them to put on matches well avove their experience level. We have an example of that in the Team Beyond (Chase Burnett and Zane Silver) vs Young Studs (Eric Ryan and Bobby Beverly) tag match from All Dude Review. While the Young Studs were the then AIW champions, Chase and Zane were two relative unknowns put together because of the potential seen in their early Beyond appearances. The match was an exciting, innovative, fast paced bout. It comes across as all the more fresh since even dedicated US wrestling fans probably have not seen a lot from any of these wrestlers. It is a testament to the effectiveness of the Beyond formula that with less experienced athletes, you still see matches that meet the standards set by all-star companies.

Another great match was Chris Dickinson against his childhood best friend Johnny Mangue. As Dickinson puts it, these guys have been wrestling since they were nine, and it shows. The match is fluid, but gritty, and just drags you in as it goes along. It starts off pure wrestling, then breaks down with Mangue getting sent into a guardrail, before diving over a huge wooden desk and burying Dickinson under it (for some reason a framed autographed picture of Kevin Nash came into play).  While Dickinson is a breakout star in the making, Mangue showed that he has just as much raw potential here. Great showing!

High Five Academy featured an eight man tournament, as that was about the number of wrestlers who were able to brave the blizzard that day and make it to the show. Those wrestlers included Flip Kendrick and Louis Lyndon, so it wasn’t all bad. The tournament format also aided in building towards the first Corvis Fear and Chris Dickinson encounter, which closed out the show.

Again, Hailey Hatred found herself in the opening match. This time against Saturday-afternoon-movie-kung-fu specialist Louis Lyndon. We’re informed on commentary that this match had the most single day hits on youtube for Beyond, a demonstration of the novelty of a serious inter-gender match between two quality wrestlers. It was also just really good. Lyndon’s Wu Tang Fu plus Hailey in lucha mode produced several rewind worthy moments. Again, Hailey defied the gender stereotype with her strength, at one point catching Lyndon coming off the ropes in mid-air and bringing him down with a Northern Lights Suplex. Beastly!

Corvis Fear’s match with Lyndon’s tag partner, Flip Kendrick, was equally impressive. Corvis is one of the most innovative people wrestling today. He comes up with things no one’s ever done before, only to use them once. Of course, Flip can fly with the best of them and has top tier athletic ability. The two complemented each other extremely well. Later, Corvis faced Hailey and it nearly matched the Dickinson bout.

Corvis, in a bout of temporary insanity, began the match by copping a feel and stealing a kiss from Hailey, and was then promptly dropped on his head for the trangression. If that wasn’t enough to get him to respect her, Hailey dropping a senton on his head surely was. Frankly, Hailey brutalized Corvis for much of the match and he had to dig deep in order to get the win. Corvis being one of the faces of Beyond being pushed to the limit by Hailey was great to see. At no point in this, or any, of her matches was her gender a detriment or distraction. With female wrestlers as strong as Hailey, Sara Del Rey, Cheerleader Melissa, and Rachel Summerlyn, it’s no wonder more and more companies are using them in high profile roles like this. Beyond’s forward thinking on this is commendable.

Eric Ryan vs Chris Dickinson was another methodical performance by the “Dickster.” Ryan’s sleaze-rocker demeanor belies a confident and capable foil for Dickinson. Again we see Dickinson snap and actually bring a chair into the ring, before being stopped by ref Dave Dawson (pre-sparkly shirt). The match was technically sound with Dickinson focusing on the arm the entire time, even with his strikes. It ended with a slick submission finish, and nods to yet another member of the Wolfpack.

The tournament finals finally brought Corvis Fear and Chris Dickinson together. The match was good purely from a wrestling aspect, but what makes it such a significant part of Beyond history was the ending. Dickinson and Corvis walked into this match as friends and traveling buddies, but walked out the most bitter of enemies. It began as you’d expect with Dickinson focusing on strikes and holds and Corvis using crazy moves that may or may not have come from Tekken. At the end though, Dickinson crosses the line from a guy with a few anger issues to someone truly despicable. He fakes an injury to lure Corvis in, and takes advantage to steal the win and the tournament. Understand, this marked a sea change for the company: Beyond went from a place where everyone was there for the wrestling and competition for it’s own sake, to a place where some simply put winning above everything else. It was a really cool moment that was built up over both shows, and it was a key change that helped clarify the direction of the company.

There’s several this shows worth seeing, and the audio options provide incentive to watch them more than once. First there’s the well done one-man-booth commentary of Denver Colorado (the man, not the place). Then each disc has a raw audio, no commentary option which, given how vocal the wrestlers in the audience are, is worth visiting at least for the big matches. What makes this release really special though, is a fantastic director’s commentary feature. Beyond Wrestling promoter Drew Cordeiro teams with Chris Dickinson to provide insight not only into the matches on the show, but the history and concept of Beyond itself. Given that Beyond is so different from every other wrestling company, hearing Cordeiro talk about the creative process behind it is quite eye-opening. Likewise, it’s nice to get to know the laid back, humorous guy behind the deranged sociopath that is Chris Dickinson. As he appears in 5 of the 11 included matches, you get an in depth look into his personal history, how he approaches his craft, and what it means for him personally to be “the guy” for Beyond Wrestling. He even takes the time to address criticism of his wrestling style, and the rumors that he stuffs his tights. DC and CD cover all of that, and much more in an informative and, at times, hilarious session.

When you take the quality of the matches, their significance to Beyond history, and their relevance to the next stage of evolution for women’s wrestling, you’d be hard pressed not to find some value in this DVD. There are a couple of  less than stellar matches, an odd lack of entrance music (which some wrestlers actually use to their advantage), and the drain of the tournament is sometimes visible on the competitors, but all of that is completely overshadowed by what’s good here. The Hailey Hatred matches are all phenomenal, and Dickinson and Fear put on a great showings as well. The director’s commentary is much like getting a full “shoot” interview as a bonus on this release, and it really puts it over the top as a great DVD and worthwhile purchase.

This is a must have for any Hailey Hatred, Chris Dickinson, or Beyond Wrestling fans. Everyone else should seriously consider purchasing it as well. Check the video preview below!

Score: 7.5


Beyond Wrestling – http://www.lookmanofans.com

Hailey Hatred The Dirty Dirty Sheets Interview


Beyond provided a review copy of the DVD, and we’ll also be giving one copy away on Twitter. If you see us make a tweet wtih the #BeyondDVD tag, retweet it, once and only once, for a chance to win. We’ll make several tweets over the next week, each giving you a chance to enter our random drawing, but please don’t retweet the same thing multiple times.

Prize is one (1) copy of the All Dude Review/High Five Academy DVD. Winner must follow @BeyondWrestling and @DirtyDirtyTweet to be eligible, and provide address for shipping of DVD. Contest ends Friday, August 19th, 2011 12:00AM. Any form of spamming is prohibited and will result in disqualification. Void where inter-gender chop battles are prohibited.