The Meadowlands and Jolly Londontown
And now, the rundown. Shall we dance?
One Time Pass
We open with GBJ and Pearl Harber meeting about Johnny's "super serum," which turns out to be a ham sandwich smoothie with extra ingredients, after which Johnny takes off for his main event match on a jetpack. Silly segment, but it amused me. It might not amuse you if you're an outsider looking in because the jet pack thing is an inside joke. The bit about the serum though was good because it plays into all the history of the last year in AWC with the Prometheus serum angle and the maker of that serum (a guy who also happens to own AWC) being in attendance tonight to pick who the sole Entertainment manager is going to be.
It's the Coalition's turn to seg it up in the beginning of the show. Somewhat of a wooden beginning. I don't feel anything between Allen and Reno. Things pick up with the introduction of Dawn Davidson. All in all, a decent table setter.
First off, I HATE that song, and I hate Staind in general. Personal preference, though :)
Standard introduction, nothing too flashy about it, but it serves its purpose well, getting across the matches for the evening and playing up the hugeness of the event.
We get a glimpse into the world of one Dr. Kasidy Drake with this segment. I thought the intro to it was a bit much. It rambled and almost lost me. Get to the point, which is what Dr. Drake has to say, not what's in his office. I mean, setting the table is nice, but focus more on what he had to say, which was something important. We're getting a surprise new AWCer and he's got a choice to make. I thought this could have been played up a little more. Still, it serves its purpose.
Ah yes, Allen and Reno again. Good hype segment, gives you an idea of what the team is all about.
Our first match of the evening, and it's a tag affair. Some good spots in there, I liked the SuperSuperPlex, but I thought having a 450 splash that doesn't end in a pin is a bit much unless it's a climactic moment in the match. When Krimzon does that spot, it's like... bleh. Same with the near-finish with the ref bump. I think that spot is overplayed. Otherwise, it was a pretty neat match, good opener, sets a good tone for the PPV.
Firstly... love the title ;)
Next up, we get a nudity tease, a cab driver trying to get Teresa Tomas to say "git-r-done" and Tiara Bell and Wayne Russell setting up Vetra Vacation #29343. I guess this gives the finish of their match away, but who knows.
Wager II: Electric Boogaloo
In case you don't know, Pierce Lavelle and GBJ have a wager going on whether Ellis Nash is going to turn on GBJ or not and side with Dick. Anyway, this is a fantastic segment, and there's no question in my mind that GBJ carries it. Lavelle's a good straight man/hardass type, but Johnny's retorts to Pierce are gold. "It's guacamole season!" Classic.
Okay match. The action was good, near-finish bonanza at the end was okay if a bit overdone. Didn't like Jeff Marx in this match at all. The over-the-top sexism didn't work for me because he openly rooted against both of the characters when you had a clear heel/face delineation. He's the heel announcer for a reason. If it were Wayne Russel vs. Teresa Tomas, then it would have worked, but another angle for Marx should have been taken. Regardless, solid match.
Flashback segment featuring Lavelle and Chainz. Obviously, the Champ has something to hide and now, Chainz knows that, although he doesn't know what. Doesn't really say much other than set up some kind of secret scenario, but it serves its purpose well.
Good segment. Builds on Marquez using Paddy for his own selfish gains with Paddy yet again bungling another task. Simple, predictable, yet effective. The Marquez/Paddy angle is one of my favorite ongoing ones in AWC right now.
I wrote this match, so no critique of it from me. However, I'd love to hear what you guys thought of it. Seriously, leave me feedback.
Fun little segment. More Paddy and Josh tomfoolery, always good. I liked GA's portion, builds his character nicely, although maybe he should have been snacking on raw kitten to build up the fercious aspect of his character ;) Good special appearance from Saij too.
Trouble in paradise between Pierce and Sarah. Something's going down, more secretive talking and such. More table setting.
More shenanigans on the boat, this time with more of a focus on GA and Johnny Lexicon. Good interactions there.
Good match, and good to see the Fists retain. Liked the action, especially the chokeslam/grab and clutch from the stage that wiped out both Sorrow (God, I hate the New Black's individual names) and Liam. What I didn't like was all that bullshit in the middle that passed for commentary. I don't need to see that. It wasn't funny, in a way, it was breaking kayfabe, e-fed style. Plus the Ghost of Steven Smith stuff was excessive. Basically, there was a long break from match action for some stupid shit that had no bearing on the event and that wasn't even funny to boot. No, you don't have that, especially not on your biggest PPV of the year.
Jewel of the Seas
Wow. All I can say is, whatta match. Seriously. For a match that size and of that clusterfuckage potential, it kept my interest the whole time. Big ups to GA for taking the Relentless Championship and to him and Paddy for taking the flag for the East. A lot of really good spots and strats all around. I particularly liked how Afeaki was written, like a combination of a T. Rex and a velociraptor in Jurassic Park. Paddy and Ellis were written well too. I liked their interaction when Paddy was all tripped out and Ellis tried to pin him. Great job, and perhaps a MOTY candidate.
So Mikey O'Reilly gets thrown into the ocean and now the ship's going down. I don't know where they're going with this. Could be interesting, could be disastrous.
First up, I love how this match is being billed "The War to Settle the Score." It gives such an old-school feel to it. The entrances were pretty boss too, especially Anton's. Gotta love the chariot. However, "Superunknown" didn't click with me as Darce's theme song. I dunno, I guess that track will forever be associated with Freakfish for me, but I can't blame Nate for this, seeing as he's probably never heard of Double F or MBE for that matter.
The match itself, this deserves another WOW. Great end to a great feud. Sure it was a clusterfuck, but with the parties involved, how could it not? It was an enjoyable one, and that's all that matters. Loved the interplay between Anton and Luis during the match. I think that's going to be a great story when they finally break up. The wrestling action was really good too. I'm a huge fan of Anton's offense, the strikes and stuff, how he works so much differently than traditional wrestling strikers. I also enjoyed the spinebuster into a floatover bridge pin combo from Darcy. All in all some good wrestling action as well as fun brawling and clusterage with Luis, Billy Mays and Tony Little.
Bored of Segs
This was the best seg yet. The interaction between Lexicon and his wife was gold, but the interaction between Paddy and Josh was PLATINUM. Seriously.
The New Guy
First up, Ignatius Liseaux in AWC. Wow, this is huge. When I first heard about it, I was a bit uneasy because he just left PRIME and all, but really, what else did he have to accomplish there? Here he's got a clean slate. Plus, it happens in the wrestling industry all the time. A guy leaves one promotion and heads to another one, and the previous promotion gives him a good sendoff. This happened in ECW all the time.
As for the seg itself... I didn't like how they kept referencing previous PRIME stuff constantly. It makes AWC look like it's piggybacking off of PRIME, and that's not the way to go to build a new star up. However, I understand that a lot of it was necessary backstory to go along with why Iggy would make the decision that he looked like he was going to make. The payoff was right out of the Vince McMahon/Steve Austin playbook. A little derivative, but it was at least well-executed.
Extremely brutal match. Barely any pretense of wrestling there, and that's a good thing. Really captured the visceral nature of the feud. Plus, I'm a fan of any match where there's a swirly involved ;)
Simple recap of AWC's history. Effective.
Transatlantic Three Way
Well, the concept was different. I'll give it that. The action that I didn't think was too over the top was pretty good too, and there were some pretty good humorous spots. I thought it was a good match, but I don't think it was befitting the main event. I don't know, parts of it just seemed too goofy for me to buy it. Still though, there's no doubt there were some really entertaining parts, and of course, GBJ deserves GIANT props for unifying the TA title and crown and coming out as the biggest winner at both the biggest events on the AWC calendar.
Wow. Just wow. I'm floored by everything being tied together. Harber's heel turn. The revelation that he was the "voice," that he sabotaged Sasha, Lavelle, everything. Great way to end the show. If you're not going to end it with a payoff in the ring, well, then I guess this is the best way to do it. I do have a few problems with it. One, it takes away from GBJ's title win, which, to think about it, was monumental and should have been the hallmark on the show. Suffice to say, I think GBJ has been treated as somewhat of an afterthought in the last month or so. It's understandable seeing the magnitude of this angle, but there's a way to treat everything with equal gravity.
Second, what's the deal with Mike Wade? First, he's a commissioner, which with Harber around as the EM, is a redundant position. Then he goes and turns on everyone not five minutes as The Empire (once again, I can't picture anyone but Housefly, Gladiator, Chameleon, the Fallen Angels and Ted Sullivan as a stable called The Empire, but once again, I doubt Hyde/Lara/Joe Maga/et al. have even heard of A1E, so I have to let that one slide). I know he's called "His Swerviness," but I don't understand the need for this.
Still, it's a very powerful way to end the show. Also, huge congratulations to Adam Dick for his entry onto the AWC Legends Roll. It's well-deserved.
All in all, I thought it was a great show. Some slow spots, but basically, everything was enjoyable to read and everything got tied together nicely. It was big, but it was big in its own way. I think though, that most of the writers tried a bit too hard to make it big, and it showed in some spots where various characters were saying "oh, this is the BIGGEST.SHOW.EVAR" and such. It came off a little forced, like it was only big because you said it was. However, the content behind it, especially Jewel of the Seas, the Frontier Title Match and the end angle, backed up those claims very nicely.
If you want a real-world counterpart, this show felt like a WrestleMania from the Rock'n Wrestling days, with an emphasis on personalities and lavish storylines rather than pure wrestling competition storylines. I hate to make the comparison, but this is where it differs from PRIME's CIII, which also had the HUGE show feel but in a different way. CIII was anchored by two bitter feuds over in-ring animosities, and a lot of what happened in the ring had a more old-school NWA StarrCade, ECW November to Remember or WM 2000 or X-7 feel to it. When you compare the two feds, it's like looking at the old Monday Night Wars, where you had WCW and the WWF with two distinctly different feels battling each other. That's a good thing, because if they were both the exact same fed, then the PTC circle would be a little more boring.
Anyway, I should wrap this up. Congrats to Nate, Josh K. and Joe MaGa for their huge title wins, and really, big ups to everyone who contributed to the show. It was the best AWC show I've read since I joined, and I'm glad to have contributed to it.