THE SMOKE BREAK WITH DIE RAUCHERPAUSE- great!
Everyone congratulates Norman Harras on his win. They insist he take a toke of their hookah and he gives in… and doesn’t cough this time, and they all accept him. Harras then cut a great “I’ve moved up a level” promo. Bobby Gunns then cut a promo stressing the importance of winning tonight’s eight-man tag team main event… and because the Pretty Bastards lost last week, now they (and especially Prince Ahura) are the ones getting lectured… and they don’t like it. Prince Ahura says he isn’t feeling it tonight so he won’t wrestle. Harras apparently isn’t wrestling, either, he also tells the group that he’ll handle things. This last part with Harras and Ahura backing out of the match was weird, but everything else was great.
ANIL MARIK INTERVIEW- good young, idealistic babyface stuff
ABDUL & AYTAC BACKSTAGE- good
We get to see that their relationship with Metehan is very much one of hero-worship. Norman Harras stopped by to give them an invitation to some sort of secret meeting Bobby Gunns had been talking about earlier. They are under the impression that invitations meant for Metehan and not them.
AVALANCHE PROMO- GREAT!
This was a great aggrieved babyface promo, recapping their feud (which is now 1-1), and then challenging Harras to one final match: Falls Count Anywhere in the wXw Wrestling Academy!
TRISTAN ARCHER vs. ANIL MARIK- 4.5/10
The story here was Archer overpowering the smaller wrestler. Levaniel came out to distract him but not only was Marik unable to capitalize off of this to get the win, but Archer punched Levaniel in the face, too. The match was just your basic storytelling with one convincing nearfall thrown in after the distraction. Perfectly fine for the time it got and what it was meant to accomplish.
ANDY JACKSON INTERVIEWS METEHAN- good
Metahan insists that putting in a match against women is not fair because he would never hit a woman, and therefore it shouldn’t count as him losing the six-man tag last week (Prince Ahura was the one who got pinned), and he shouldn’t have to defend his Shotgun Title against Killer Kelly as a result.
LEVANIEL CONFRONTS TRISTAN ARCHER BACKSTAGE- great
Levaniel’s paranoia about the French guys and Amale and the ways he tries to make up for his perceived inadequacies are entertaining, and it’s even more entertaining when other people just don’t care at first, and then Levaniel manages to annoy them to the point of turning them into adversaries.
KILLER KELLY SKYPES WITH ALEXANDER JAMES- good
AJ was extremely supportive of Kelly, so it’s good to see that continuing. Basically, this was like a conversation from last season, except that now is managing to not be a jerk while telling her that’s I’s great to be excited, but now she needs to hunker down and focus on training for her big opportunity. AJ noted that if she won, she would be the first woman to hold a men’s singles title in wXw. Less important to history but probably more important to this particular story, he noted that if she won the Shotgun Title, she would be doing something that he had been unable to do. I was amazed that there was no hint of irritation in AJ’s voice when he said this, but I can’t imagine it won’t become a point of friction if she does win the title.
DAS HIMMELSCHLOSS WITH SPECIAL GUESTS FAST TIME MOODO & STEPHANIE MAZE- good
Levaniel has asked them how they get along so well, hoping to soak up some relationship advice to use with Amale. Unfortunately for Levaniel, these two aren’t a couple; they’re just a tag team. Levaniel said he didn’t realize a man and a woman could be tag partners and not be in a relationship.
They got to build up their tag title shot next week. Pretty Bastards came out and tried to hit the babyfaces with the tag belts but the babyfaces ducked under it, sound around, and got their dukes up, so Pretty Bastards backed down and told them they were only out here to give Maze and Moodo the only sniff of the tag titles they would ever get.
IVAN KIEV vs. THE ROTATION- 4.5/10
This was very good for the time it got, and actually felt like a big win for The Rotation… which maybe isn’t the best thing considering that he got much bigger wins earlier this year when he won a tournament to ear a spot in 16 Carat Gold (pinning Absolute Andy to do so) and then actually won his first-round match.
JURN SIMMONS INTERVIEW- good stuff to create some tension with Hektor Invictus for their rematch.
Also… I’m not the sort of person who usually cares about these sorts of things, but this interviewer is taller than Jurn, and one of Jurn’s nicknames is “massive” Jurn Simmons.
THE ROTATION & GOLDENBOY SANTOS BACKSTAGE- good
That Goldenboy Santos is such a tremendous snake! He’s being all buddy-buddy with The Rotation, so The Rotation asks him if he has any idea why Metahan seemed to be under the impression that The Rotation had said rude things about his mother when all he had said is that Metehan’s mother would be ashamed of his heelish behavior. Santos says he has no idea, and also starts planting seeds to pin the blame on others.
SARA LEON INTERVIEW- bad
She has no charisma and her English isn’t very good. They need to at least let her talk in her native language and then add subtitles. She wants to wrestle Baby Allison.
BOBBY GUNNS & METEHAN HAVE THEIR SECRET MEETING- good
Metehan is unhappy that Die Raucherpause seem to be reaping a lot more benefits from this partnership than his group. Bobby Gunns wants another favor, and Metehan says he will do the favor for them, but then Bobby will owe him a big debt.
BABY ALLISON PROMO- great!
She was an arrogant jerk and explained to us why she is so annoyed with the other women (she thinks they are getting opportunities that she deserves, while management constantly overlooks her.
BABY ALLISON vs. SARA LEON- 2.5/10
This was short, but fine for the time it got. Allison got some offense in, Sara made her comeback, then Allison caught Sara in a submission for the win.
DIRTY DRAGAN & JURN SIMMONS BACKSTAGE- good
Dirty Dragan gets Jurn to open up a bit. Jurn says he has been feeling like wrestling doesn’t really matter anymore because of annoying immature antics like those of Marius Al-Ani. Dirty Dragan urges him to not give into those feelings, implying that they could be a gateway to drug issues that Dragan had in the past. I’m not sure I see that. It seems to me that if Jurn wants to get out of wrestling, it will probably lower his chances of drug addiction.
HEKTOR INVICTUS INTERVIEW- great!
He explained to us exactly what it is so important to him to beat Jurn Simmons in this rematch that he himself has asked for, even though he beat Jurn their first time and did nothing immoral.
JURN SIMMONS vs. HEKTOR INVICTUS- 5/10
This was great for the time it got, but didn’t even go six minutes, and if you’re trying to make Hektor look like someone worth paying attention to even in defeat (and making his win against Jurn in their previous match not look like a fluke), this needed to go a lot longer than that. It’s possible that this was a rushed finish, as the finish was a piledriver where they came down at an angle, so maybe Hektor’s neck was jacked, but my suspicion is that the piledriver was the planned finish.
It was announced that EZEL will team with Bobby Gunns and Maggot in tonight’s main event, replacing Norman Harras and Prince Ahura.
ABSOLUTE ANDY, LEON VAN GASTEREN, DIRTY DRAGAN, & EMIL SITOCI vs. DIE RAUCHERPAUSE (Bobby Gunns & Maggot) vs. EZEL (Abdul & Aytac)- 7/10
Good babyface in peril stuff followed by an exciting finishing sequence that ended with Emil Sitoci hitting the Tombstone Piledriver on and cleanly pinning the wXw Unified World Wrestling Champion Bobby Gunns.
JURN SIMMONS INTERVIEW- The interviewer asks Jurn why he has seemed to be in something of a funk lately, with mixed results in the ring. He speculates that Marius Al-Ani is in Jurn’s head. Jurn promises that he will answer this question next week. This felt like a clumsy way to hype a storyline revelation on next week’s show. I think it would have been a lot better to just announce that Jurn has asked for some time to speak next week and leave it at that (the early segment with Dirty Dragan will signpost for us viewers that this segment is important.
MARIUS AL-ANI AND HEKTOR INVICTUS BACKSTAGE- great!
Marius tells Hektor that challenging Jurn again was foolish. He tells Hektor that having people’s respect- the fans’, the office’s, or even Marius’- doesn’t matter. What matters in wXw is winning and Hektor had a win over Jurn, but when he challenged Jurn to a rematch, he took a chance that his previous win could wind up being invalidated, and that’s exactly what happened. Hektor told Marius to stop treating him like he’s just his sparring partner and not an equal member of the wXw roster. Marius mocked the idea that they were equals, and a challenge for a match was made and accepted.
BOBBY GUNNS YELLS AT ABSOLUTE ANDY IN ANDY’S OFFICE- great!
Gunns accuses Andy of having it out for him and wanting him to lose his title, which Andy admits to. Gnns thinks Andy is doing this to weaken him so that Andy himself can win the title, but Andy reveals that the new #1 contender is the man who just walked into his office: Emil Sitoci. Sitoci grabbed Bobby by his injured neck (which Bobby had been selling throughout) and cut a little promo on him. All three guys were excellent here.
NICO INTERVIEWS NORMAN HARRAS- EXCELLENT!
Nico is the name of the guy who I was complaining about being too tall. At least Harras is taller than him- though only slightly, and Harras is 6’5.
Harras cut an EXCELLENT promo in which he not only got to show off his character (he came off as ambitious, ruthless, and a jerk… and one who find all of the bad things he does to be acceptable because “it’s just business” and his job is put himself in a position to get the big-money matches), put his opponent over, and both accept the challenge to and then hype up his big match next week against Avalanche at the wXw Wrestling Academy. I loved his little comments about “pulling the strings” in particular, because while they can and should be taken at face value here as referring to his feud with Avalanche, they reinforce the possibility I’ve talked about before that Harras is playing a much bigger game than most people realize here with this alliance between EZEL and Die Raucherpause he has set up.
This was a good episode of Shotgun in that it moved the stories along well and everything was good for the time it got, but I must once again voice my disappointment that the matches on the undercard haven’t gotten the necessary time to help the newer competitors shine in the ring. Next week’s season finale is listed at over two and a half hours, so hopefully that means they’ve given all of these big matches they’ve spent the whole season building up the proper time.
NJPW, PROGRESS, RevPro, CMLL, etc
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