Hey, Cewshketeers. In an effort to keep you guys abreast of what is going on in the wrestling world when we’re not covering it ourselves, we’ve started an initiative to give people a chance to do write ups of wrestling shows they attend and get them posted on the Rajah main page for thousands of eyes to see. If you’d like to be part of this and you’re going to be attending a wrestling show anywhere on the planet, give it your best shot and email your review (no more than 10 Microsoft Word pages) to email@example.com. Together, we can make this site relevant again, and something that we can all be proud of, but we can’t do it without you guys. So get out there and share your experiences, and in the meantime, please enjoy our first guest reporter Tim’s account of Chikara’s most recent show, GIVE ‘EM THE AXE.
Hi there. I’m Tim and this is my little Chikara review. Quick backstory, I was supposed to go to Joshimania Night Two back in December but it would have been a logistical nightmare. Doable, but really inconvenient. Cewsh, of Cewsh Reviews, offered me a review opportunity if I was to go, but it just didn’t happen. Fast forward to July 29th and I’m standing outside the Everett Rec Center, in line for Chikara’s Give ‘em the Axe. So, let’s get started. A quick round-up of storylines goes as such:
• The Throwbacks are cashing in their three points to challenge ROH’s Young Bucks for the Campeonatas de Parejas.
• The fourth of four Young Lion’s Cup qualifying matches is tonight, featuring four outside talents: JT Dunn, Aaron Epic, Vinny Marseglia and ACH.
• Wink Vavasseur’s Chikarabermetrics system has created two new trios: 3.0 + Gran Akuma and Soldier Ant, combatANT and deviANT. They wrestled each other on Saturday and get to face established trios on Sunday.
• Special guest Marty Jannetty will be teaming with Green Ant to take on Los Ice Creams.
Real quick, I like to encompass the whole event experience, so it won’t be just matches covered here. Also, I’m doing a lot of this from memory and my bad iPhone photography. So I won’t call it hold for hold. Sorry.
Myself and my two friends, Mark and Steve, arrived right at 3:30. There was a big line out the door and going halfway down the sidewalk. We figured there were a couple hundred people there. While waiting to get in, Brendan O’Donnell tells everyone that Marty Jannetty was not there yet due to flight issues but they were in contact with him and he still may arrive on time. Nobody in line seemed too alarmed. I doubt anyone came out today just to see one half of the Rockers.
As we approach the front of the line, we are told that it will likely be standing room only. I personally don’t care, I just wanna get inside and see a good show. Nobody else is too concerned with not having a seat either. It was right here where I noticed two big guys in black suits, black t-shirts and black sunglasses standing by the entryway. They looked like guys that were trying too hard to be security guards. It was cloudy outside; there’s no need for sunglasses today. We try to read their shirts but can’t make out the name. Anyways, we pay the $20 get inside and stand behind a section of bleachers near the entrance curtain. Great view.
Our view. Literally within spitting distance.
I didn’t realize everything was so close until we actually got there and looked around. Our estimate of a couple hundred is probably right on. Brendan comes out and runs down the card, not mentioning the Ice Creams vs Green Ant/Marty Jannetty match at all. Probably not a great sign, but you never know. He could pull a Doug Mirabelli and change in the car on the way over. (Look it up.) Finally, they introduce Gavin Loudspeaker and start up the Chikara theme. Gavin comes out, runs down the rules, emphasizing the family-friendly aspect, introduces Senior Referee Bryce Remsburg and goes right into the first match.
The Swarm come out first, but Soldier Ant walks right through them to the ring. They try to clamp down on his happiness, but Soldier isn’t having any of it. The story here is that Soldier is his generally tecnico self, shaking hands with Frightmare and going back and forth with Frightmare trying to scare him but Soldier just salutes in response. combatANT and deviANT try to get him to cheat, be aggressive, etc. but he refuses and goes so far as to attack his own partners occasionally. Soldier goes up for a splash with the Swarm holding down Hallowicked, but Soldier won’t do it. They try it again with Soldier holding Hallowicked’s arms, but he lets go as deviANT jumps and Wicked sits up. The Envoy wins this one, but I don’t remember the finish. Soldier Ant leaves his partners in the ring, leaving alone when the match ends, not wanting anything to do with them. A fun match to start, especially the opening few minutes between Frightmare and Soldier Ant, but Chikarabermetrics don’t seem to be working thus far.
Ophidian comes out convulsing and spasming. I guess those are his new snake-like tendencies. He hides under the ring before Sugar comes out and spits red mist in Sugar’s eyes as he goes around the ring. Ophidian spends a few minutes messing with him, kicking him, hitting him with the basketball and getting him to punch turnbuckles. He called out to Sugar and was pretty creepy about it. It kinda reminded me of Bloodsport, but that may have been “Fight to Survive” playing before the show. Finally, Sugar gets his eyes cleaned out and the match really starts. Great back and forth here, with Sugar showing a little fire. But Ophidian gets the Death Grip on and Sugar hangs on for a long time, but Ophidian bridges a la Cattle Mutilation and Sugar passes out. Post-match, Delirious (!!!) comes out and leads Ophidian out with a smile on his face.
This match was not on the card. Stranger is a wild-west theme, masked wrestler. Kinda tall and lanky and reminds me of a certain missing member of the roster. At one point, Stranger went behind the curtain and brought out a Radio Flyer rocking horse and nearly knocked over the entire curtain set-up. I don’t think they’ll be able to edit that out of the DVD. Stranger borrowed a sombrero from the audience, put it on Shard, then put him on the horse and posed with all of it. Stranger won with a top rope leg drop. Shard never really had a chance here and didn’t connect with the audience at all. I know he’s supposed to be rudo, but he didn’t get a chance to show it here outside of mean-sounding grunts when he was on offense. Post-match, Stranger carries the horse out and the crowd chanted “Please be careful.” It was at this point that I mentioned to my friends that Chikara fans will chant for anything.
More Chikarabermetrics in action here with the new trio I would like to call 3.O-kuma. The match started with a lot of thrown toilet paper and an impromptu football game breaking out with 3.0 and some of the audience with the roll. 3.0 had a lot of fun with this one. Akuma seemed kind of ‘fish out of water’ which I’m sure was the point. Akuma tagged himself in a couple times and was really rolling along until Delirious came out and interfered, giving the DQ win for 3.O-kuma. This started a beatdown on the Canadians and Akuma. The Batiri and Delirious were joined by Ophidian soon after they started the assault. The five of them stood tall and Delirious led them all backstage after tender kisses to the tops of their heads. It seems we have a new stable in Chikara. 3.0 left first, leaving Gran Akuma to walk back alone.
I am not a great photographer, but you can figure this out, right?
Sara got a huge ovation as she came to the ring, easily the biggest pop so far. Icarus brought a can of Old Spice body spray to the ring and sprayed himself “just for you, Sara.” Sara, Bryce and most of the front row spent a couple minutes fanning away the smell. Lots of posturing and jockeying early, as Icarus played the role of ‘creepy’ really well. The mustache doesn’t hurt either. Finally, Sara turns it up and starts laying in kicks. Icarus breaks free and tries to kiss Sara. A moment later, he backs her into the corner and actually does. He walks off, “I KISSED SARA DEL REY!” And then she annihilates him. “Sara’s gonna kill you,” chant starts up. There were a couple of finisher teases from both wrestlers and then Icarus countered a piledriver attempt with a jackknife pin and a handful of tights for the win. Post-match, Sara hits Icarus with the Royal Butterfly and gets a standing ovation from the crowd with “Thank you Sara!” chants. I think they know this may be her last Chikara match. If so, it was enjoyable and really made Icarus look like a crafty heel, but still left the crowd happy.
I always heard about wrestling shows with intermissions, but never saw one before. They had Eddie Kingston in the ring taking pictures with the Grand Championship and nearly a dozen wrestlers were selling their merch, taking pictures and signing anything. Sara, Frightmare, Ultramantis, Sugar, the Young Bucks, Kobald, Ophidian, the Batiri and Veronica are the ones I can remember but I know there were a few more. At one point, someone lost a Sharpie and Sugar got on the mic trying to find its owner. I marked out a bit and got pictures with Kingston and Sara. I am basically the same size as Eddie. I was wearing the Damien Sandow ‘You’re Welcome’ shirt from Barber Shop Window and got a lot of comments on it. I made the mistake of going to the concession stand right before intermission ended and missed the first part of the next match, however, I did get to meet Jason Rumble (former NWA New England champ and appeared for TNA a few times) so it was worth it.
I missed Jakob’s self-introduction because of the concession line but my friends said it was funny. Jigsaw did a fair amount of hair-based offense early, using it in a surfboard-style submission and stepping on it while pulling Jakob’s arms. Jakob was able to recover, but Jigsaw kept the advantage for most of the match. Someone tried to start a ‘Rubix!’ chant, but he got booed down. The ref turned his back at one point and Jakob hit a throat thrust, leading into his neckbreaker and the win. I certainly did not expect that, but good for him. I think it’s a big win for him and keeps his singles momentum going. He has won all three of his singles matches this season. No Tim Donst anywhere.
Los Ice Creams have their black bag ready to go. They find a fan wearing a Los Ice Creams t-shirt and El Hijo del Ice Cream chants for him until he nearly passes out. Green Ant gets on the microphone and says Marty isn’t there. However, they found a suitable replacement backstage: Steve ‘Turtle’ Weiner.
Pictured: Not Marty Jannetty
It’s a lot of what you would expect from an Ice Creams / Turtle match. But then, Los Ice Creams start getting a surprising amount of offense on Green Ant. Green Ant finally gets away from them and tags in Turtle. Turtle hits a few clotheslines, then shell bumps in the corners. He calls for Shell Shock, which I imagine is his finisher. Instead, we get a Cold Stone Stunner on Turtle and out come the sprinkles. A slam on Turtle has no effect due to his shell, which he loudly proclaims with, “NO EFFECT!” but el Hijo throws sprinkles in Turtle’s eyes and El Asesino wins it for them. Post-match they get water for Turtle’s eyes so there might be a legitimate injury there. Gavin says he’s ok and Turtle gets a small round of applause. Turtle blames himself for the loss, but Green Ant says it’s ok. The fans really gave it to Turtle here as the replacement for Marty. I can see people being upset, but don’t call the guy out on it while he’s wrestling. Write an email, ask for a refund, do whatever, but don’t rag on the guy. Los Ice Creams got a great reaction all the way through. They have a lot of fun. I don’t know if this is their first win, but it’s the first that I know of.
The crowd seems split 50/50 between ACH and JT Dunn. ACH is my pick in this one. My friend thought everyone was chanting ‘AZN’ because he had Dragon Ball trunks and t-shirt on. Dunn is the local guy, Marseglia seems to be an artist with a paintbrush and painting his name in the air, I don’t know much about Epic but he’s supposed to be the next big indy sensation according to the internet and ACH is someone you can find on YouTube and he looked impressive from what I saw. He named a lot of his offense after fighting games (Sonic Boom, Round 1, Round 2, Finish Him etc.). Aaron Epic is the strongest here, ACH is the high flyer and the other two are more balanced. There’s lots of action here including several dives to the outside. Epic’s finisher seems to be a right handed hook. It looks way better than Big Show’s knockout punch. I found out while writing this that it’s called the Fastball. He called out ‘HERE WE GO!’ with each attempt. Marseglia is the first to be eliminated via Fastball. He didn’t last too long. JT Dunn took out Epic a few minutes later with a great looking Tiger Driver in the dead center of the ring. ACH and Dunn went back and forth for several minutes after that. Dunn hit the Tiger Driver and ACH kicked out. Then he teased a top rope version which ACH countered and followed up with a 2nd rope 450 Splash for the win. He got big cheers for the win, hugging a couple of fans he seemed to know and Dunn got a great reaction as well. I think ACH will do well in the tournament.
Why yes, that is a Dragon Ball t-shirt.
Veronica accompanied the Throwbacks to the ring, of course. Dasher and Touchdown spent a minute pumping each other up before the match, “Today’s the day!” “Game day!” “Gotta win today!” Stuff like that. They kept each other in it from the corner when they were down with more motivation. I don’t know how long they’ve known each other, but it felt like they’ve been teaming for years. There was so much action here, I can’t remember it all. The first two falls went quickly, probably in under ten minutes. The Young Bucks scored first with Veronica’s baton to Angelosetti’s head when Dasher convinced him to not hit Matt Jackson with it. The Throwbacks reclaimed the fall quickly after a rollup. I believe it was Dasher who got the fall. So now it’s 1 to 1. The energy really picked up for the next 10-15 minutes. The crowd was totally on the side of the Throwbacks except for two guys in Young Bucks t-shirts. Dasher took the brunt of the damage from the Young Bucks. But he recovered and hit an assisted Grand Slam for a very near fall. I would like to take a moment and say I feel like every time you watch a Young Bucks match, you see something new. They hit a rope-hung neckbreaker / over the top rope flip senton combo, plus all their signature kicks, their brutal powerbomb / roundhouse corner kick combo and finally the win with More Bang for Your Buck on Angelosetti. The crowd gave a huge round of applause for the winners. Post-match, Veronica blamed the loss on Dasher while she cradled Touchdown’s head.
This match totally made me a Mr. Touchdown fan. I had never seen a match of his before so I wasn’t sure what to expect. In the story, Dasher is really rubbing off on him and trying to get him to win clean, so you could see the conflict in his face when he didn’t hit Matt Jackson with the baton. His offense is fun in the Throwbacks style. He hit a huge shoulder tackle on Matt and left him in the corner for a good minute selling it. If anyone has strong tackles, it’s the football player, right? He has a good look and is a young guy. It wouldn’t surprise me to see him in the WWE someday. He could be ‘Mr. Football’ Angelo Marksetti or something.
To end the show, Gavin wished us all a safe night and there was a handshake line of wrestlers thanking us on the way out with Frightmare, Jigsaw, Soldier and Green Ant, Saturyne and Sugar Dunkerton, plus ACH out by the stairs. I don’t know if he meant to be there, but he ended up shaking everyone’s hand anyways. Overall, I would absolutely recommend this show. The YLC qualifier was great, the main event was awesome and everything else was at least fun, if not a great match in itself.
The Big Three – My three favorite teams or wrestlers of the show
1) ACH – He put on a great performance and won a big match, maybe the biggest of his career thus far. I really think he can win the whole thing.
2) The Throwbacks – They put over the importance of the titles constantly and gutted out a wonderful match against one of the best teams in wrestling.
3) Delirious – Yes, he didn’t wrestle, but he had the most intriguing story and potentially founded a new rudo stable.
IMO – My ranking of the night’s matches
1) Young Lion’s Cup Qualifier: JT Dunn vs. Vinny Marseglia vs. Aaron Epic vs. ACH
2) Campeonatos de Parejas: The Young Bucks vs. The Throwbacks
3) Sara Del Rey vs. Icarus
4) 3.0 / Gran Akuma vs. The Batiri
5) Ophidian vs. Sugar Dunkerton
6) Soldier Ant / deviANT / combatANT vs. The Spectral Envoy
7) The Shard vs. The Mysterious and Handsome Stranger
8) Jakob Hammermeier vs. Jigsaw
9) Los Ice Creams vs. Green Ant / Steve ‘Turtle’ Weiner
Last but not least, I want to thank Cewsh at Cewsh Reviews for giving me the chance to write something up and a quick Twitter plug (@Brainbustaaaaaa) for myself.
Sorry, I wasn’t leaving this review without posting this.
Thanks for reading this far down. Have a good one.
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