Saturday, August 8, 2009

1PW: A Cruel Twist of Fate

1) Jodie Fleisch/ Johnny Storm v. Jerry Lynn/ Chris Sabin- 5
2) Tracey Smothers v. Blue Meanie- 0
3) Ice XVII/ James Tighe/ Ross Jordan v. Spud/ Shabazz/ Stevie Lynn- 3
4) DLo Brown v. Sterling James Keenan- 3
5) Steve Corino v. Al Snow (AWA World Title Match)- 3
6) Iceman v. Low Ki- 6
7) Austin Aries v. Doug Williams- 4
8) Raven v. Sandman v. Tommy Dreamer (Anything Goes Match)- 3
9) AJ Styles v. Abyss- 4

Okay 1PW for those not familiar, is a promotion run out of England. This is their debut show, but not sure when it took place, I'm thinking sometime in 2005. They're in the Doncaster Dome (?) with 1,500 strong. Mostly flew in American talent for their roster which has a usual cast of characters. Opening tag match was fun, and I nearly gave it a 6 but too much of it felt like a rehearsed ballet than a wrestling match. I'm sure I've seen the same exact spots in a X Division matches 100 times over. All the guys were fairly capable of pulling it off and the match went a good 20+ minutes so the effort was totally there. Lynn I was especially disappointed in, since I had a hand in putting him in the NHO HOF because he was just going through the motions for most of this. Sad thing is his going through the motions still makes a better looking product than most. Storm had the most miscues but the British crowd was certainly fired up for this. Next match I could have called with my eyes closed; seen the same shitty excuse for professional sports entertainment on several of those ECW reunion shows and it was garbage then and remains so now. Cue the horribly contrived and completely insulting dance off and move on.

Our next 6 man was the "homegrown" talent, and i'm using that T-word loosely. Big star here was a 4"11 runt named Spud who could do any high flying move in the world but would be fodder for your little sister. No one in this match impressed at all, especially Ice XVII & Lynn, who botched a technical spot where one guy would sweep the leg, which Lynn missed his cue, so Ice just fell down himself. Looked so freaking terrible I nearly skipped the match. This had all your early 2003-04 indy spots so I guess Europe is a few years behind. Luckily Abyss came out and killed them all afterwards. Brown is a guy whose never earned his veteran status; Keenan has some nifty offense but his timing and basic attacks look really sloppy. Brown should be able to carry him through the match; but it was a failure. Only redeeming spot was the nifty finish out of D'Lo's marred attempt at honoring Eddie Guerrero by trying the 3 Amigos but looked more like a homeless man being electrocuted. Next match was a sight to behold; Apparently the AWA World Title has been brought out of the closet, mothballs and all and Corino is the champ. I'd rather have Billy Robinson anyday. So here he defends against Snow in a 45 minute match (I wish I was kidding.) First part of the match was really good, exceeded my expectations, they were working a slow build, making every movement matter and I thought if they could pull it off, it would be match of the night for sure. Then we have a fake injury angle that took a good 6-7 minutes, which was a work from Corino. Then a long punching sequence (which I liked Snow's punches), then more Smothers-Meanie mess, and finally ending with a ode to WWE superstars that went on forever, everyone from the Game to Angle were immortalized in this absurd section. It became quite painful to watch.

This one was fun to watch; Iceman was a fatty who raided Tommy Dreamer's closet to find your standard sweats and t shirt apparel. Ki brought the stiffness in spades here, as they were barely any moves throughout the first 10 minutes, mostly just Ki punishing this behemoth dude with lethal kicks and sickening chops. He ripped Iceman's shirt off, hockey style, twice, both times the big man put it back on. He also potatoed Ki with some nasty elbows in the early portion, but Ki was not having any of it. There's just something inherantly fun about watching a smaller bad ass dude whoop the fight right out of a big dude. Finish was tits too so that made me want to tell other people to watch this for sheer enjoyment. I liked this matchup but it was mostly just a vehicle for Williams to get over big with his hometown crowd; Aries was playing the dumb heel with really over the top facials and not much in the way of offense. Williams kind of dominated him for portions of this which Aries would have been better to be in control most of the way. This 3 way was a big pile of filth and debris. Sandman looked drunk and palor as ever, Raven was bloated but did cut a funny promo at the beginning where basically he stole Claudio's schtick and Dreamer came out a few minutes in to a big reaction. Of course he was balding and still taking unprotected shots from aluminum weapons to the head. Sandman fell into a big guardrail spot that was brutal and fun; Raven's sells were fancy free and pathetic. This was exactly what you would expect it to be once you read the matchup; nothing more, nothing less. The camermen went out of their way to film people with ECW shirt and signs, as if this was the promotion's name. Anyways, Raven told the crowd AJ v. Abyss would be the main because it deserved to be. Well it wasn't anything special. AJ pulled off a bunch of hurricanrana spots that Abyss sold big for, almost as if landing on a trampoline every time. They pulled out the tacks which wasn't near as passe for Abyss as it is now, but his big bump into them was nearly a complete miss. They had a good pace and knowing each other helped this match flow really well but it wasn't main event material, at least not what they presented here.

This fed marketed itself as the new evolution of wrestling in Britain, but you can see any of the faded stars they used here at your local armory or at an ICP fuckoid convention. The British talent was way underskilled and all spot monkeys except for Williams, who doesn't really compare to the upper echelon of American indy workers, so the premise they based themselves on is a complete joke. But the show entertained me at different points and wasn't a complete failure. But close.

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