wXw Fans Appreciation Night 2018: Oberhausen (9/1/2018)- Oberhausen, Germany
KRIS WOLF vs. MILLIE MCKENZIE- 4.5/10
The comedy with the wolf head was okay. No one got hit with it so I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt there for not causing a DQ, but extrapolating from what we see here, it seems to imply that putting a mask on someone who doesn’t wear one is also not a DQ. Well… I guess if ripping someone’s mask off is a DQ then it stands to reason that the opposite of that is not a DQ. Maybe in a Lucha Libre match it’s even an alternative win condition.
Millie finally had enough to Kris Wolf’s antics and fired up and threw her suplexes, but Kris Wolf managed to win via flash pin, making me very unhappy.
WORLD TAG TEAM LEAGUE QUALIFYING MATCH: Dirty Dragan & Emil Sitoci vs. Jay FK vs. RISE (Ivan Kiev & Pete Bouncer)- 5.5/10
They had a chaotic three-way tag, with guys coming in from every which way to break things up, as you would expect. Jay FK got the pin on Dirty Dragan after some cheating. Dragan’s repeated failures make his story feel like it isn’t really going anywhere (unless they’re going to have Sitoci turn on him as well, which would make him seem even more pathetic), but at the same time, Jay FK have done so well this year that having World Tag Team League without them wouldn’t feel right.
FRED YEHI vs. DOUG WILLIAMS- 6.75/10
A fun and solid wrestling match, but I was hoping they would let these guys go a while and let Doug put on something special in what will probably be one of his last wXw appearances (yes, I fully expect Williams to lose the PROGRESS Atlas Title to Trent Seven at Wembley and retire per his vow).
BOBBY GUNNS & LUCKY KID vs. MARIUS AL-ANI & TARKAN ASLAN- no rating, okay segment.
Lucky Kid ran wild on both heels for a bit, needing one bit of Bobby Gunns running in briefly to help him at one point… then got nailed by a punch from Tarkan and then a Frog Splash by Al-Ani and pinned, which the crowd really didn’t like. The reason they didn’t like it was because they didn’t understand that Tarkan had brass knuckles on when he did this. We at home wouldn’t have known either if Tarkan hadn’t shown them to the camera afterwards, because I’m not even sure the announcers realized what had happened. Seeing Lucky get beaten so quickly and not getting to see Gunns do much of anything made the crowd feel cheated here, and even I watching at home felt like this was more of a filler segment than anything else. It does show that Tarkan is willing to go to extreme depth to hurt the man he once considered a brother, but it really felt (up until this point) like the purpose of this match was just to get the Tarkan vs. Lucky feud on one of this weekend’s shows.
As the heels left, Bobby Gunns grabbed a mic and started ranting, yelling at the referee for not seeing the brass knuckles (and, in the process, explaining to the fans what had really happened). He demanded that the heels come back out and the match be restarted but obviously they weren’t going to do that. He eventually started to shove the referee, and then did the same to the security crew who came out to try to calm him down. Lucky had a similar reaction when he finally woke up, and Gunns kept demanding that the heels come back out and face them again.
Gunns was eventually told that they had already left the building and started to get angry again. Gunns refused to believe this and told Lucky that they would go comb the building for the heels and when they found them they would kick their asses, and the two of them headed backstage. There was some very good emotion here from Gunns (enough to get me behind him as a babyface, and the guys comes off like someone who never stops being a heel to me), but without some sort of development here (I was expecting Gunns to get suspended for attacking referees or something) or a payoff later tonight in the form of some sort of big brawl (which has yet to happen), this still feels like a filler segment to me.
LAST MAN STANDING MATCH: David Starr vs. Jurn Simmons- 6.5/10
Star’s facials during his entrance were excellent just on their own, but when you contrast him today to his usual cockiness and doing his long introduction along with the announcer, it did an even better job of selling what a huge match this was.
We started off with a Kendo Stick sword fight, which was extremely appropriate for this feud. They had a great, violent brawl which then ground to a halt when Jurn started to tear the ring up. We teased moves onto the exposed wood until Starr finally hit Jurn with a Piledriver… but Jurn got up at nine. We then got a spot off the top in which they both took a bump that I’m sure they’ll be feeling for a week, and were both counted down. This was not a good finish at all. F*cking fans in a gimmick match like this is never good, and this was the second match in a row with a questionable finish (at least from a “fans in the building” perspective). The wXw fans were not happy with this at all (we got more “BULLSH*T” chants) but I they did an excellent job of letting everyone know that they still appreciated what Starr and Simmons but themselves through.
wXw WORLD TAG TEAM TITLE MATCH: Monster Consulting(c) vs. Aussie Open vs. RingKampf- 8/10
AWESOME! This was like the other tag team three-way but a lot better.
THREE-WAY MATCH FOR THE VACANT wXw WOMEN’S TITLE: Melanie Gray vs. Alpha Female vs. Killer Kelly- 5.75/10
Toni Storm is injured and will be out for a few months, so we’re crowning a new champion. I don’t know why Alpha Female is in here other than the fact that she is big and scary. Kelly won a #1 contendership match last night over Kris Wolf and Melanie Gray. We were shown a backstage happening from after that match where Melanie complained that Kelly gets everything and pointed out that Kelly didn’t even pin her to win, so Kelly said she has no problem with Melanie being added to the match. Melanie looked exceedingly pleased with herself for talking her way into this title match. Also, when did Melanie learn to speak English so well? She always used to cut her promos in German.
The first part of the match saw Melanie playing the heel who sits and waits on the outside while the other wo fight it out, and she was fantastic in that role. This also let us get some good one-on-one time between Alpha Female, who was fantastic at being a big scary monster, and Killer Kelly, who was fantastic at being the underdog babyface who doesn’t back down from the big scary monster.
The other two eventually smartened up to what Melanie was doing and started to work together to drag her back in and force her to fight. From there we had a more traditional three-way, with Melanie eventually stealing Alpha Female’s pin on Kelly to win the title. Giving Melanie a mostly bullsh*t win on Kelly was good for this point in their feud and I like the idea of Kelly once again beating Melanie to win the belt at the Anniversary Show but this time with Kelly going in as the big star instead of as an unknown underdog, and I like that this sets up a Melanie vs. Alpha Female title match to call back their feud in 2016-2017 but now with the babyface and heel roles reversed, but I really wish this match would have gone longer than nine minutes.
wXw UNIFIED WORLD WRESTLING TITLE MATCH: Absolute Andy(c) vs. Ilja Dragunov- 7/10
Last night’s world title match started with Andy hitting Zack Sabre Jr. with a suck-kick, so tonight’s started with Andy trying to do the same to Ilja but Ilja was ready for it and was able to block it.
They were having a pretty great match up until the point where they set up Andy’s big cheating spot. The spot wasn’t inherently bad or anything, but the entirety of the set-up for it felt painfully contrived. After that point this almost felt like more of a segment, and while, from a dramatic point of view, everything was executed perfectly, logically was another story. Most importantly, why did the referee not stop Andy from carrying a microphone (a foreign object) around during the match? And why did he even pick the microphone up and give it to Andy when Andy asked for it after Andy had to put it down to lift Ilja up onto his shoulders? This would have made a great segment, but created logical problems when done during a match. The fans popped for the chairshot and for Ilja getting some revenge on Andy for those terrible things he said, but they were not happy with the main event world title match DQ.
POST-MATCH SEGMENT- great!
Ilja snapped and began to destroy Absolute Andy with the chair. He even started to attack security when they tried to stop him. Bobby Gunns, who holds the Shortcut to the Top title shot, showed up, got in Ilja’s face, and then kicked him in the nuts. Andy saw this as he was getting up and assumed that Gunns was on his side, but Bobby kicked Andy in the nuts as well. Gunns then cut a very good little promo, turning his usual “smoking kills, but Bobby Gunns is killer” catchphrase into “smoking kills, but Bobby Gunns is going to be champion” and knocking Andy over with a pelvic thrust to the face while celebrating with Andy’s wXw Unified World Wrestling Championship belt.
This was a decent show from wXw, but the non-finishes in key matches were a little troubling. I don’t even think the one in the main event was bad on its own, but it was problematic doing it in the main event and especially on the same show where you just did a seemingly pointless non-finish in a Last Man Standing Match. On the whole, stuff seems to be moving along well storywise, but I can also totally see why CMJ felt himself getting burned out. I’m sure someone who wants to could come up with some forced comparisons to Gabe’s firing as booker in ROH, but then again I thought Gabe was doing fine (not particularly great, but still fine) when he was fired, too.
NJPW, PROGRESS, RevPro, CMLL, etc
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WWE in 2005
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WWE in 2005
FIP in 2005
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ECW Guilty As Charged 1999
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