XVW is a local, low-grade, indy promotion that runs out of a dilapidated opera house in the middle of a dying city still trying to recover from a year long lockout of the local steel industry. Let me see what gold, if any, can be dug out of this pile of festering poo or will I end up covered in manure.
Before I look at the matches and give you the scores, let me set the scene. First off, they have the ring set up in the middle of the orchestra pit in front of maybe 70 people (and that's being somewhat generous). Secondly, they've made up videos for their wrestlers which helps the first time viewer of their show (a.k.a. me!) recognize the characters. Two immediate downsides to that though: #1: They've obviously hooked their computer to a projector and they are using Windows Media Player to play the videos and #2: You figure out who's coming out before they click on the video because they hover over the icon for fifteen f***ing seconds! Third, you have commentary over the in-house mic, which, for those of you who read the reviews that Brian, Jessie, and I did for that deplorable Ring of Glory show a few years back, you know how annoying that is. However, the commentary here is two-fold but I will touch on that in a moment. Lastly, the booker has made himself the star of the show. You'll know him, he's the fat fuck who doesn't wrestle but yet has the most ridiculous gimmick and is the most over. In this case, he's known in these parts as Double P (don't ask me what it stands for because I can't f***ing remember). He's the one that puts himself and his angles over on the in-house commentary at the expense of the workers in the ring. Remember what I said about the commentary being two-fold? Good! Because during the second half, this fat fuck is virtually non-existent and the commentary helps you follow along with the bout. Whew, now that that's done with, please take a moment to catch a breath before you read my comments on the matches.
Moment over. Let's look at the matches.
1) The Belfast Brawlers vs. Assault & Battery - 2
2) Brandon Biggz vs. Pauli Jr. vs. Okiri Tanaka - 2
3) C-Jack Jr., Allen Jefferson Moore, & Waikiki Kid vs. Black Dragon, Chris "The Kid" McGraw, & Dreez - 3
4) The Bounty Hunters vs. Leo & Lenny Spicolli vs. Acid Inc. vs. The True Thugz - 1
5) Kliff Hanger vs. Clutch McAllister - 3
6) The Highspot Kings vs. Psycho & Korrupt Jones - 4
7) Tommy "T-Dogg" Foreman vs. Loco - Dog Collar Match - 3
8) Ricochet vs. Kannibas - 3
9) Matt Shock vs. "Nightmare" Jimmie Lee - Last Man Standing Match - 4
The Brawlers looked like your standard indy team with an Irish gimmick. They came to the ring drinking cognac instead of pints of Guinness. Assault & Battery was basically another standard indy team with a hardcore gimmick. This was full of sloppy spots and bad brawling. One of the members of Assault and Battery (not sure if it was Assault or Battery) got busted open for no good reason in this slopfest of an opener. The three way was pretty good, for low-level indy standards. Biggz couldn't be of legal age to wrestle. He looks like he's about 14 years old! Tanaka hit a nice coast-to-coast dropkick for the highspot of the match. Pauli Jr was virtually non-existent for the duration of the bout but came from behind to win with a sneaky roll-up. The six man tag was a pilfering pile of dog shit. Black Dragon, McGraw, and Waikiki Kid seemed halfway decent while the rest just decided the day before that wrestling a shitty six-man was a quick way to make some extra bucks on the weekend. I remember fondly a vertical suplex that was botched beyond all fuck by Dragon but he recovered mid-move into a float over cover, to which he earned some decency points. A final word about the six-man, Dreez was touted as a monster but his strikes were noticeably lacking. Perhaps he could take some striking lessons before he hides in little kids' closets.
I've never seen a bigger clusterfuck than the four-way match. The Bounty Hunters were so fat that I'm suprised they didn't need to take a hit of oxygen on their way to the ring and didn't do a damn thing in the match. The Spicollis were, well, just there and were pretty bland. Acid Inc looked like a rehash of Assault & Battery but didn't assault anyone nor did they change any car batteries. Finally, the Thugz were accompanied by local wrestling star (and I'm using that term loosely) Brock Guffman which, when I think of thugs, I think of large black men accompanied by a white guy wearing shorts and argyle socks. The match was ridiculous. Not one clean move was executed and the Thugz walked out in the middle of the match to start an angle with the aforementioned Double P. The remanining competitors finished off the match quickly with a looks of utter confusion on their faces. Kliff Hanger and Clutch had the most technically sound match of the night, mainly because it seemed like they were the only ones who were actually able to work. They worked a pretty standard match with Kliff Hanger playing a black redneck. The end saw intereference by and ICP rip-off and a goofy looking guy in a Cincinnati Reds jersey. Afterwards, we were handed an intermission that saw a photo session and bad rap music blasted over the loudspeakers. After the intermission, I'd estimate half of the original crowd left the building to pursue other ventures.
The second half began with a tag title match. The Highspot Kings were exactly that and were over extremely big. The two teams worked well together although Korrupt missed a basic moonsault by a mile. The Kings need to learn some holds and they might be able to get to the next level of area indy shows. I would've liked to see more ground work in the match as it was mostly flashy moves and highspots but I won't complain too much as it stole the show thus far. Dog collar matches are good when they have a good story and the chain is used properly (ie: Piper vs. Valentine - Starrcade 83) and this collar match failed in that respect. The chain broke twice in the first five minutes and after the second break, the competitors worked into a hardcore match complete with bad brawling and insensitive blading. T-Dogg looked like a kid who just graduated from high school and I'm not exactly sure what Loco was supposed to represent ... a convict perhaps? I hear there's an escapee on the loose. Afterwards, we get a reunion of sorts and the remaining people go apeshit for some unknown reason. Kannabis and Ricochet was for the heavyweight title and they worked a very bland match that couldn't have gone longer than ten minutes. The finish came out of nowhere and saw Kannabis grab a brick loaded purse (and I'm talking about actual building bricks, not the other bricks) and passively hit Ricochet to win the title and I'm unimpressed. The main event (and I'm using that term loosely) was a decent bout. Shock had an impressive physique and took punishment quite well including numerous unprotected chair shots that echoed throughout the tiny opera house. Lee looked like a gothic version of the Undertaker and even did a cool variation of the old-school rope walk but instead of jumping off with a chop, he jumped off with a spin kick. One big complaint I had about the match was that Shock took three hard chair shots that didn't phase him but was knocked senseless when he was hit in the back of the head with a Bible from Lee's manager priest dude. Once the show ended, everyone left so they could set up for the midnight screening of the Rocky Horror Picture Show. When I say "they", I mean the venue staff, not the wrestlers, although that would've been interesting to see.