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Showing posts from April 28, 2019

Select Match Reviews: FREE at Last

Matches from FREEDOMS THE Gekokujo 2019 1.Tubes & Ladder Death: Takeda vs Toru ***3/4 2.King of FREEDOM Title, No Canvas Death: Kasai(c) vs Fukimoto *** Thoughts: Big Japan might be the kings of death, but FREEDOMS is close behind and I tend to really enjoy the stuff they put out. In a perfect world, Takeda would still be champ, but he proved once again that he is a king either way in a great, brutal match that really put Toru over, too. The main event proved that Jun is still one of the craziest dudes in the game, and that if Takeda can't be champ he's the perfect guy to hold the gold. In many ways, Takeda is Kasai 2.0 in my mind. Anyway, this started with a seated exchange of tube shots for reference but a lot of the rest of the first half felt lethargic. On the flip side, the big package piledriver through the glass bridge spot and what followed were worth seeing. In all, this is below the rating that I'd call recommendable, but it wasn't bad and if you

Select Match Reviews: A New Princess

Match from Tokyo Joshi Pro Yes! Wonderland: Opportunity is There 1.Princess of Princess Title: Miyu(c) vs Shoko ***1/2 Thoughts: TJP has quickly become a favorite for joshi fans, actually challenging STARDOM a bit for popularity in many circles. This DDT sister promotion is poised for a huge breakout, so it is important to have the right face as champ moving into that direction. Is Nakajima the right person? I'll reserve judgement for now. There was a pretty iffy dive cut-off spot early on, and a few whiffed shots throughout, but this was a pretty good match in all. I would have preferred to see Miyu retain, but I am interested in seeing where this goes. And, if nothing else, at least she is still SHINE Champ. Consider this one but don't rush.

Jericho vs Okada at Dominion!

Jericho and Okada are set to face each other at this year's Dominion show, which was established when Y2J appeared at the second night of Dontaku. This is happening because Chris (and Omega) are actually both allowed to work New Japan shows still, as per their AEW contracts.

PWG Hand of Doom Review

Matches from PWG Hand of Doom 1.Brody King vs Jungle Boy *** 2.Puma King vs DJZ **3/4 3.Rey Horus, Laredo Kid vs LAX *** 4.Eagles vs Gresham ***3/4 5.PWG Tag Titles: Rascalz(c) vs Best Friends ***1/4 6.Bandido vs ACH *** 7.PWG World Title: Cobb(c) vs Trevor Lee **** Thoughts: This is actually the first PWG show I've seen since Mystery Vortex V. That's a sin, isn't it? So, this show had a lot of fun moments and a few recommendable matches, but a lot of stuff also under delivered. Jungle Boy was impressive, and that is the first full match I've seen of his so that's a good start. Gresham and Robbie was my favorite match of the first half and an easy recommendation. The main event was the other one I suggest adding to your watch list and a fantastic title defense. I'm going to miss Trevor on the indies, though I'm glad he got a nice sendoff here. The rest can be skipped unless you are a completionist. While Hand of Doom was a good show, it f

AAA in MSG Pre-Sale

If you're interested in seeing AAA in the Garden this Fall (09/15), the pre-sale  has started. Use "Lucha" for the code.

Select Match Reviews: WWE Matches of the Week

Matches from WWE Week of 04/29/19 1.Nese vs Gulak ***1/4 2.Ohno vs KUSHIDA *** Thoughts: Only two things caught my eye this go around and none of them lived up to my own hype. There was a third, but I'm not going out of my way for NXT UK stuff anymore. If it isn't on Hulu, I won't be watching nor reviewing from it. They make a fraction off of me when I watch via Hulu and I refuse to give them $10 a month. They make plenty as is, and don't care about fans anyway. So, that means only select stuff from Raw, SD, 205, and NXT as well as TakeOver events will be covered here. Have I mentioned that AAA has been doing better ratings than WWE by the way. Felt like a decent place to mention it. Recently, they even did bigger numbers on their one show than WWE did on their entire week of content. A big part of this blog is meant to help fans that stumble upon it recognize their options are far from limited. Never forget that. So, to the matches. The first pull was

Select Match Reviews: Rebellious

Matches from Impact Wrestling Rebellion 1.X-Division Title, OvE Rules: Swann(c) vs Callihan ***3/4 2.Gail Kim vs Tessa ***3/4 3.Impact World Title: Impact(c) vs Cage ** 4.Impact Tag Titles, Full Metal Mayhem: Lucha Bros(c) vs LAX ****1/4 Thoughts: The first pull here was a great hardcore match, even if I am still unsure why Sami is in the X-Division picture. Oh well, the division is pretty random at times. Either way, watch that defense for sure. The second saw Gail Kim return, apparently for just one night, and the outcome went as well as expected. She hasn't lost a step. It helps a bit that she was up against one of the best women in the America scene, of course. Great match that really put over Tessa as the true star of the division, even if she isn't holding the belt right now. The World Championship contest was decent, but far from the level I was hoping for. It was overbooked a bit and the injury to Cage hurt things. At least he finally won the title, and Elgi

Updated Double or Nothing Card

Here is the latest card info for the upcoming AEW debut show: -Omega vs Jericho -Cody vs Dustin -AAA Tag Titles: Bucks(c) vs Lucha Bros -Page vs PAC -SCU vs Strong Hearts(CIMA,Lindaman,T-Hawk) -Kylie Rae vs Nyla vs Baker -Over the Budget Battle Royal The event takes place on May 25th from the MGM Grand Garden Arena.

Select Match Reviews: No Survivors

Matches from BJW Ikkitousen: Death Match Survivor Night 12 1.Okabayashi vs Hashimoto ***3/4 2.Death Match Survivor Finals: Isami vs Takeda **** Thoughts: Big Japan does it again, this time with two matches that perfectly define what makes them so entertaining to watch. The first pull showcases their elite strong division, with Okabayashi and Hashimoto putting in for a great slow burn. Yuji has been putting on inspiring matches since his return from injury, and I hope people are recognizing it. The main event was a brutal clash, displaying how Big Japan does the death genre better than basically anyone else. Takeda remains an elite performer, and I love how he has won over fans that tend to shit on death workers. Isami winning the finals is an interesting move, but he more than deserved it after this performance. If you haven't seen Big Japan before, or even if it's just been a while, these are really good starting points to get (back) into the promotion. Either

Thank You, Wolf!

Hulu Getting Two More MCU Shows

Yesterday, I posted a primer for the next phase of the MCU. Of course, that means more info came out right after. At least it's good news this time, unlike that Santa Clarita bullshit. Hulu, already home to the Runaways series, will be getting two more MCU shows. One focuses on Ghost Rider, as seen in Agents of SHIELD. The other is Helstrom, with a focus on Daimon and Satana. Let's hope this leads to the Netflix shows being revived for Hulu when they become an option again.

The Return of Moxley

Last night, the lunatic formerly known as Dean Ambrose officially resumed activity as Jon Moxley when he posted a jail break themed video on Twitter. Speculation on his next move is running high, but it's safe to expect him to either land in Impact or AEW. My money is on AEW. All I know for sure is that this is guaranteed to be interesting.

Select Match Reviews: Ōnin War

Matches from New Japan Sengoku Lord in Nagoya 1.IWGP Intercontinental Title: Kota(c) vs Sabre ****1/4 Thoughts: This one saw the reigning RevPro British Heavyweight Champ challenge for the IC strap. Tech-wizard, Sabre, once again received a huge spotlight match from New Japan, which has been one of my favorite things that the company has been doing lately. Kota might have walked out with the belt after a successful defense, but they both came off as stars. Truly, a fantastic match and another huge 2019 New Japan moment.

ONE Championship Weekly 05/01/19 Review

1.Muay Thai: Nong-O vs Mehdi **1/4 2.Lee vs Tokudome **3/4 Thoughts: I enjoy watching ONE's weekly series, so I figured I'd give them an extra plug here. No real reason not to and I am trying to watch them regularly again starting here. If you've never watched an episode before, know that they are short installments full of action. This week we build toward two upcoming ONE specials by looking back at two recent fights. The first was a clipped, muay thai showcase. Nong-O destroyed Mehdi, but the one-sided nature of this one kept it from being very entertaining. A few fun shots helped a bit, at least, but you can skip that one. This fight was taken from the Kingdom of Heroes event. Note, for future knowledge, there must be at least three minutes of action shown to earn a rating. We close with a fight from Heart of the Lion, with Christian Lee getting a TKO on Kazuki in the first round. This one was pretty decent, and once again proved how much of a threat Lee i

Select Match Reviews:Tuesday Night Dynamite

Match from CMLL Arena Mexico 04/09/2019 1.Mex National Trios Titles: NGD(c) vs Hermano Chavez, Soberano Jr ***1/2 Thoughts: I had missed this one since I tend to skip most of the midweek CMLL stuff, but I'm glad I ended up finding it. I think this was during my move, to be fair. NGD stepped up again, as did the tecnicos, giving us a pretty good title match here that felt much more like a Friday night match than a weekday one. Borderline great, really. These guys are the future of the oldest promotion in the world and this was another example of proof! Consider this one if you have 20 minutes to kill.

Arrowverse Watch Guide

Marvel might dominate on the big screen with the MCU, but the Arrowverse is pure entertainment for comic fans seeking enjoyment on the small screen. So, if you are late to the party, use this simple and easy guide to break in. The Shows There are four main shows in this universe. Arrow, Flash, Supergirl, and Legends of Tomorrow.  Note that each has their own appeal, and that some of them might not be your cup of tea. And you know what? That's ok. There is actually limited crossover between the shows, and most of it is minor little references. Personally, I enjoy them all. Arrow, to put crudely, is a lot like watching a Batman series. Oliver Queen is a dark, brooding rich kid with no super powers that dresses in dark clothes and takes out bad guys. The next season is the last one. Flash is much lighter than Arrow, with Barry Allen and crew providing a lot more laughs and action than drama. Supergirl is the lightest of the bunch, and at times seems like a bubblegum series

MCU Phase Four Primer

The Infinity Saga is about to be over with the upcoming release of Far From Home, so, what's next for the MCU as we head into Phase 4? Let's take a look at what's been announced, what to expect, and even what not to expect by starting with the current stars of the universe. Oh, and expect spoilers! AVENGERS LINEUP The team lost some big names during Endgame, but remains stacked. This is the main crew now: -Captain Marvel -Professor Hulk -Black Panther -Thor -Doctor Strange -Hawkeye/Ronin -War Machine -Ant-Man & The Wasp -The Guardians of the Galaxy -Falcon/Captain America -Winter Soldier -Scarlet Witch MOVIES So far, we know a decent amount of what is planned for the big screen side of the MCU. Filming for a Black Widow solo flick is expected to begin this Summer and around the time Black Widow wraps up, an Eternals movie is expected to be shot. In 2020, we should see filming begin for sequels to Guardians of the Galaxy, Doctor Strange, and Black Pant

Kento Wins 2019 Champion Carnival

All Japan ace, and current Triple Crown Champion, Kento Miyahara, has won this year's Champion Carnival. I'll be posting a roundup review of select matches from this year's tournament soon, but encourage you to give All Japan some love when you can. Follow their accounts, perhaps join their sub service, etc.

Select Match Reviews: Pinning a Legend

Match from Sendai 04/16/19 1.Satomura vs Sareee **** Thoughts: Sareee gets a rare, big deal match and it went as well as expected. This was simply fantastic, building off a hard hitting action from start to finish. Satomura remains an ageless wonder, but I really hope Sareee's victory here leads to something because most of her career so far has been wasted in Diana. Check this one out!

AAA Worldwide: Rey de Reyes Pt.1 Review

Matches: 1.Reina de Reinas Title: Shani(c) vs Hiedra vs Keyra vs Tormenta *** 2.Cage: Psycho, Fresas Salvajes vs Kross, Mascara, Jarrett **1/4 3.AAA Tag Titles: Mercenarios(c) vs Lucha Bros *** 4.AAA Tag Titles: Lucha Bros(c) vs Young Bucks ***1/4 Thoughts: The first part of this year's Worldwide presentation of the Rey de Reyes special was a decent hour of wrestling. The women's match was a bit sloppy, but if full of entertaining chaos. They went full on with the hardcore spots after a few minutes and didn't let up. Good, but lacking a bit to keep it from being truly recommendable. The cage match was on par for lucha cage matches. You really have to care about one of AAA's midcard stories to find this one worthwhile, and even Psycho couldn't turn it into much of anything, though the end stretch was a bit better than the bland first half. In all, it was still just an average match that ran a bit too long. Skip that one. The Lucha Bros and Mercenarios ma

Select Match Reviews: A DASH of Joshi

Match from Sendai 03/02/2019 1.Hardcore: DASH vs Hikaru ***1/2 Thoughts: Don't you just love the tables they use in Japan? This was a bit too interference heavy to be truly special, but if you enjoy random little hardcore matches this was pretty fun. DASH is one of my personal favorite workers, so that's extra reason for me to suggest checking this out even if the outcome wasn't to my liking.

IMPACT+ Replacing GWN, More...

Impact has announced their new streaming service, IMPACT PLUS. It seems safe to assume this is related to the lawsuit with JJ, and the new option will indeed be replacing the former GWN. It also seems safe to assume it will essentially be the same thing with a different skin. It launches May 1st. In related news, the promotion ran their Rebellion special last night which saw Cage finally take the championship. He was taken to the hospital after the event with a back related injury. Here is his statement: Not how I wanted or ever imagined this incredible night would end. I’ve chased this moment and have dreamt about this my entire life. And to have this be the outcome, I’d be lying if I said it didn’t break my heart. I'll be posting a review soon, but also note than LAX are the new kings of the tag division and that Elgin is now with the company. For a full review and look at the show, click here .

Select Match Reviews: Increible de Parejas Roundup

Matches: 1.Semi A: Cavenario, Titan vs Caristico, Mephisto  ***1/2 2.Semi B: Ultimo Guerrero, Volador vs Mistico, Cuatrero  ***1/4 3.Finals: Cavenario, Titan vs Ultimo Guerrero, Volador  ***3/4 Thoughts: There's a few things to know for those interested in checking out more than just these three, and have never seen one of these before. The Incredible Pairs tournament is CMLL grouping heels and faces together into two blocks, across three nights of action. Tournaments in CMLL tend to be largely skippable, outside of ciberneticos, and you likely are much better off just watching these three matches instead of all three nights of action. Just a heads up. I might bring back the old concept articles I used to write helping people branch out, by the way. Primers, of sorts. I wrote several for PWPonderings before they had that big crash and lost everything a while back. I planned on doing some for 411mania when I was set to start writing for them, but I decided to go ahead and j

Select Match Reviews: Stars and Queens

Matches from STARDOM American Dream in the Big Apple 1.Wonder of STARDOM Title: Momo(c) vs Utami **** 2.Elimination: Oedo Tai vs STARS ***1/2 Thoughts: STARDOM nailed it with this Mania Week showing, with both of these pulls being worth catching. The title match represented the bright future of the company best, with another fantastic Momo defense, but the main event was a pretty good, and very entertaining cluster. Check both of these out.