wXw SHOTGUN TITLE MATCH:
“The Avalanche” Robert Dreissker(c) vs. Veit Muller vs. Absolute Andy vs. Jay Skillet - 6.75/10
A fun opening four-way. The story was the heels working together until one of them inevitably went for a pinfall and the other stopped it. Eventually Skillet rolled Andy up to win the title when Andy looked to have things won. The fallout for this should be entertaining.
PRETTY BASTARDS vs. LEON VAN GASTEREN & WALTER - 6.75/10
Julian Pace was supposed to be in this match but got injured so Leon found a replacement partner: WALTER. Pace is good, but this is a clear upgrade. Also, even though he is currently a heel, the Pretty Bastards are exactly the sort of annoying young punks who think they’re stars but aren’t that WALTER has been railing against and are similarly cheating and bragging about it to Wheeler Yuta, whose actions were part of the impetus for WALTER’s heel turn this spring.
This was some good babyface in peril stuff with WALTER obliterating the heels when he got the hot tag. They took WALTER down with weapons shots and set up a second heat but the babyfaces made the comeback and got the win.
KILLER KELLY vs. BABY ALLISON vs. SKYE SMITSON vs. LITTLE MISS ROXXY - 5.5/10
Solid action for the six minutes or so it got.
ROBBIE BROOKSIDE HALL OF FAME SPEECH - He spoke for a solid ten minutes. I thought that was too long.
NO DISQUALIFICATIONS SINGAPORE CANING MATCH:
Jurn Simmons vs. Alexander James - 7/10
Yes, you read correctly: a Singapore caning match. That means the loser gets ten shots from the cane. But this one will not be resulted in someone saying “please, sir, may I have another.”
They hand this great, bloody brawl, with lots and lots of hatred. Eventually Jurn was about tog vie James the Viking Execution when suddenly Killer Kelly wanders down to ringside to check on James and plead with Jurn not to do so. What? WHY?
Well apparently she is Alexander James’ girlfriend. That’s kind of odd considering that she has been a babyface since her very first match and James has always been a heel. Also she and Jurn are close because she used to travel with them when Jurn and James were a (heel) tag team. James shoved her into Jurn and she took the “I’m no longer a wrestler but now just a valet” bump (when it comes to women wrestlers, the combination of street clothes and men apparently function like Kryptonite). James the hit Jurn with the Singapore cane and got the pin.
POST-MATCH SEGMENT - Very good, but… Jurn took his cane shots like a man. More than a man, actually, as in what might well be my favorite wXw moment of the year, he actually no-sold the first cane shot and just glared at AJ. He sold each one progressively after that. When we got to about six and Jurn was writhing in pain, Killer Kelly jumped in to stop it, but James first shoved her and then actually swung the Singapore cane at her. He screamed at her not to “ruin my moment!” She stormed off to the back, and after cane shot number nine our cameras then caught up with her as she entered the backstage area. Little Miss Roxxy tried to console her but Kelly said she needed to take “two or three months away” to think things through.
When we cut back to the ring, Jurn was still trying to pull himself up for the final shot. James grabbed a mic and cut a promo mocking Jurn’s promo heading into this match where he had promised to do all manner of vicious things to James. He then offered Jurn a deal: James would go easy on him with this last shot if Jurn would admit to everyone that James was better than him. Jurn pulled himself up and responded with “IS THAT ALL YOU’VE F*CKING GOT?!”
Well… he didn’t actually say the words “please, sir, may I have another,” so I wasn’t wrong. James then walloped Jurn with one last shot. The execution on all of this was perfect (Jurn in particular was f*cking amazing here), but the Killer Kelly stuff would have worked a lot better if they had actually built her relationship with James up on screen first.
JURN SIMMONS & KARSTEN BECK BACKSTAGE - Good. Jurn is tired of others getting involved in his matches with Alexander James and tired of James running away from him, so he asks Karsten to book them in a barbed wire steel cage match at Back to the Roots XIX in January.
wXw WOMEN’S TITLE MATCH:
Amale Winchester(c) vs. Meiko Satomura - 6.75/10
Meiko Satomura is still great at age 40 and she helped Amale have her best match to date, but I can’t give all of the credit to Meiko. I’ve been very hard on Amale’s performances, but tonight she looked the smoothest I’ve ever seen her look. She didn’t feel like she was slowing everyone down by three quarters of a step, to the point that things looked a little phony.
POST-MATCH SEGMENT, PART 1 - A mixed bag. Karsten Beck comes out with flowers Amale and gives her a hug. These two have been secretly dating for a while and they’ve actually done a great job of making sure Karsten stays a babyface authority figure even when dating a heel who complains about having to defend her title. In addition to the flowers and the hug he gave Amale and inspirational speech telling her to ignore the fans who boo her, just like he did when he was wXw Unified World Wrestling Champion, and that she will be able to replicate his success, just like she has been doing. He then congratulated her not just on her win but also on her “beauty.” The announcers did a great job of putting Karsten’s actions here over as being completely unprofessional and crossing a line he had not previously crossed. The idea here was good in that Karsten probably thinks that this isn’t that big a deal, he came off not just as unprofessional but also as something close to a heel manager. The only downside here was that Karsten’s delivery in English was not very good.
POST-MATCH SEGMENT, PART 2 - Very good. After Karsten left, Amale cut a promo bragging about how no one has been able to beat her and claiming to be totally out of competition. The fans started chanting for Melanie Gray, who was sitting in the crowd (she’s not allowed to wrestle in Oberhausen due to losing a Loser Leaves Town match to Toni Storm in Oberhausen earlier this year, and in wXw “Loser Leaves Town” means that you can’t wrestle in that city anymore).
Amale started to taunt Melanie, eventually saying… something that I either couldn’t hear clearly or couldn’t understand because it was in German or French, but whatever it was, it was bad enough that it got Melanie’s husband, Alpha Kevin, to charge through the crowd, hop the guardrail, hit the ring, and start yelling at her. She responded by insulting Melanie again, then throwing the flowers in Kevin’s face so he couldn’t see her then take a swing at him with her title belt, which connected with Kevin’s head. Melanie stood in the front row and did a GREAT job of looking like the fact that she wasn’t allowed to get involved in this was eating her up inside.
KASSIUS OHNO vs. LUCKY KID- 8.5/10
This was the usual Chris Hero/Kassius Ohno size advantage slow-paced elbow strike match where he dominates the smaller opponent for a very long time. These matches are usually pretty and or miss with me, but this one was a definite hit, and I think there are several key reasons for that.
First, they gave Lucky enough offense throughout that it didn’t feel like fifteen minutes of Ohno dominating someone at a slow pace. Second, they did a PHENOMENAL job of building up to Lucky’s comeback, to the point where it began to feel like an even match (which also helped Ohno look stronger in the end because he didn’t dominate the but then lose after taking few moves, which makes him look like he has a glass jaw). Thirdly, unlike in most indy settings, the crowd here was purely on Lucky’s side, rather than split 50-50, which made Lucky’s kickouts, comeback, and nearfalls feel even bigger. This was a fantastic match, and by the end it really felt like what the announcers were selling it as, which was the first step in Lucky Kid getting back on track towards the wXw Unified World Wrestling Championship after being distracted by Purge Club.
wXw UNIFIED WORLD WRESTLING TITLE MATCH:
Timothy Thatcher(c) vs. Bobby Gunns vs. David Starr vs. Ilja Dragunov - 8.25/10
This was originally supposed to be a three-way, but right before the match Karsten Beck made an announcement that he had signed a deal with a “well known strong financial partner” of wXw (the implication obviously being WWE) that would have many benefits for wXw, but it also had some conditions attached to it, and one of those was that Ilja Dragunov be added to this match. I’m more than fine with this from a storyline perspective, but it does seem like it will hurt the match a little bit, as I now can’t see anyone other than Ilja (the WWE guy) or Starr (the anti-WWE guy) walking out of this match with the title.
Or I could be totally wrong and Bobby Gunns could win the title with the help of his goons. Starr did have it won at one point before Norman Harras distracted the referee. The match itself was an awesome, intense four-way in which everyone worked hard and performed well, but the title change and heel deeds are the real story here.
ABSOLUTE ANDY CONFRONTS JAY SKILLET BACKSTAGE - Good. Andy catches Skillet not only bragging about beating Andy, but laughing about how you could see Andy’s butt-crack when Skillet pulled his tights on the roll-up. This quickly turned into your standard entertaining two heels are pretending to be friends but both know the other will screw him over at the first opportunity. A challenge is made and accepted for Skillet to put his newly-won wXw Shotgun Championship on the line against Andy at Back to the Roots.
ALEXANDER JAMES PROMO - F*CKING AWESOME!
BOBBY GUNNS & PALS HAVE THEIR CELEBRATION INTERRUPTED BY THE BABYFACES - Good. The babyfaces in question are Avalanche, David Starr, and VollGasteren. Avalanche made the expected challenge to a Kafigschlacht at Back to the Roots. It was specified that this will be four-on-four, so one of the heels will be sitting out. This was a good segment, other than David Starr’s over the top vow to drink Norman Harras’ blood.
This was a GREAT show from wXw, succeeding both as a climax to the year’s storylines and as a show to set up stories for next year. I definitely would have preferred more quality matches, but nothing here ever really felt bad or like it didn’t belong other than the women’s four-way. 2019 was a very interesting year for wXw on a number of levels, and 2020 is shaping up to be rather interesting as well.