wrestling / Video Reviews

The Furious Flashbacks – IPW:UK Weekend Of Champions Night One

October 3, 2005 | Posted by Arnold Furious

One fine morning I’m flicking through my email and check out a response to a previous 411 article I wrote about IPW: UK show Extreme Measures. It was IPW promoter Daniel Edler (oh, go to IPWUK.com in order to purchase IPW DVD btw). The basic gist of said email is that he’d like me to review more IPW material. I emailed back with my address and a few days later this DVD dropped through my letterbox. Then I had to do a load of overtime at work, the WWE had a PPV and I was finishing up a couple of other reviews. With all that cleared I finally have time to do this. Many thanks to Daniel for being a good sport about the first review and for sending this out. Remember its IPWUK.com for all your IPW DVD needs.

To my abject horror John Atkins has taken over as MC but at least we have commentary now with Rob Landau on the mic. We’re in Orpington, Kent.

Spud v Dragon Phoenix

Phoenix is back from the USA where he trained at the New Japan Dojo. Still looks like he’s wrestling in a tracksuit though. Spud gets the better of some chaining and the crowd is highly responsive. They hit the armdrags and Phoenix’s armdrag is GORGEOUS. Deep and Steamboat-esque. Spud dropkicks him. Phoenix goes for a springboard but Spud dropkicks him again. Phoenix falls outside and Spud hits a somersault hilo. Back inside a springboard crossbody gets 2. He hits another but Phoenix catches him into a WIND UP HATEBREAKER for 2. Phoenix spinal taps away for 2. Spud getting his back worked over intently. Hard Irish whip gets 2. Landau mentions “impact” and “velocity”. That Irish whip was like TNA meets the WWE! Phoenix throws some elbows but runs into a boot. Wheelbarrow bulldog is blocked INTO A BACKBREAKER. Hello! That gets 2. Phoenix with a back suplex for 2. Flying Wolverine misses. Springboard dropkick from Spud. Enzuigiri and a neckbreaker gets 2. Phoenix runs into a leg lariat and that gets 2. Spud goes up top but Phoenix runs the ropes into an armdrag off the top. Michinoku Driver gets 2. Spud clocks him with another Enzuigiri and hits the wheelbarrow bulldog for 2. Phoenix blocks the satellite DDT once but Spud nails him with it the second time…for 2. Spud charges, clearly upset, but gets a release belly to belly into the buckles. Shellshock finishes for Phoenix for the upset win. ***1/2. Great spotfest. One minor error from Phoenix but in general it was exciting stuff. Great pacing to it as well. Phoenix has improved greatly since the last time I saw him.

ATKINS ASKS – John Atkins interviews Aviv Mayaan. Atkins shills the title match tonight. Mayaan won a tournament not so long ago to guarantee him a title shot but he’s not in the match tonight. He calls Stevie Douglas “a piece of crap”. Mayaan enters tonight’s rumble match for a title shot tonight.

High Class Catch Club v Team Lucha (Ashley Reed/El Ligero)

This is from the first round of the tag team tournament. HCCC have awesome intro music. Chocks away! They’re the WXW tag champs Baron Von Hagen and Adam Polak. They’re big guys. El Ligero is cool. Reed appears to be an oppressive jerk who has control issues with valet Donna. He’s happy to help out Ligero in terms of hitting a bunch of speed stuff to start with though. Ligero works the LUCHA-HEADLOCK. HCCC just slap him about a lot though. Ligero gets crotched on the ropes and chopped. The Germans cheat with choking and poor Ligero is getting double-teamed. Reed meanwhile is having a chat with Donna. Polak hits a back suplex for 2. Baron Von Hagen gets rather irritated with the “TWOOO” shouts. He takes it out on Ligero with some vicious chops. Ligero gets chopped a lot more while Landau goes off on a metaphor about villagers in “times of old” that makes me chuckle. Ligero hits a high crossbody for 2 but he’s caught and GERMAN SUPLEXED onto his head for 2. The Baron goes for a powerbomb but Ligero strikes him and rana’s out. Superkick and Von Hagen topples over backwards. Ligero needs a tag and gets one. Reed dropkicks both heels and hits two spinning heel kicks. ROCKET LAUNCHER! But Ligero isn’t legal so there’s no pin. Ligero goes back up but Polak just shoves him off to the floor. Von Hagen clatters Reed with a lariat to the back of the head and a DDT finishes for the big men. **1/4. Nice big men v fast guys contest there. I love El Ligero. He could even turn it up a bit more and go all El Matador.

The Extremists v British Beef

British Beef are Andy Simmons and Harry Smith, British Bulldog’s son. Harry Smith looks like his Dad only bigger. Extremists are James Tighe and Justin Richards. Heels jump Smith and double clothesline him. He blocks another one and clotheslines both of them. Faces both hit hip tosses and stereo slams. Richards in to show some nice arm control on Simmons. Tighe tags in to do likewise. Simmons reverses and Smith is in. He hits a dropkick and a Northern Lights suplex for 2. Simmons back in and Tighe works his arm over again. Smith is really impressive. Tighe with a great arm whip on Simmons. Richards tags in to drop a knee across Simmons’ face. Simmons makes a come back by taking out Tighe’s arm. Richards knees him in the back illegally. They no tag for 2. Tighe back in with a bridging butterfly suplex for 2. That was nice. Simmons comes back with a sunset flip for 2 and then a cheeky roll up for 2. Backslide gets 2. Richards stops that crap with a jawbreaker. Double suplex gets 2. Tighe gets caught in the corner and Simmons hits a bulldog and a neckbreaker. TOMAHAWK…CHOP! That gets 2. Simmons rather stupidly doesn’t tag out so Tighe catches him with a suplex for 2. Simmons gets his arm worked over behind the ref’s back. Simmons with a dropkick off the middle rope though and NOW he has to tag. Hot tag to Smith who cleans house again. Heels collide and Richards eats a superkick. POWERSLAM from Smith gets 2. Tighe catches him in a pumphandle slam for 2 but wastes too much time talking so Smith kills him with a sit out powerbomb for the win. Whoa. Harry Smith just looks phenomenal. It’s only a matter of time before he’s in the WWE. He made James Tighe look very small and out of his depth and considering Misawa didn’t do that… **3/4. Fun formulaic tag match.

POST MATCH Andy Boy gets on the mic to thank the crowd.

AK47 v Team Charming

AK47 are Ashe and Kris Linnell. Charming are Don Charles team of Dave Morales and Jack Storm. Storm gets on the mic to introduce the team again, which gets greeted by a chant of “shut the fuck up”. One fan in particular irks Storm who tells him if he was important there would be chairs in the ring and everyone would be facing him. Well, he has a point. Charles distracts allowing the heels to jump from behind. They run a comedy missed low blow spot and the faces clear the ring out. Heels take their sweet time coming back in, which provokes the crowd into a “pussies” chant. Then they carry on long beyond it being interesting. Storm gets an ironic cheer for nearly locking up and then he bails for the 7th or 8th time. Ref has had enough so they have to get in and lock up or it’s a DQ. Storm finally locks up after TEN MINUTES on the floor. Storm works the arm but Linnell shows some nice skills to kick the arms away. The faces team away on Morales’ arm while Storm is arguing with the referee. That one backfired. Dropkick sandwich on Morales for 2. Charles trips Linnell up allowing the heels to double team. Double suplex gets 2. Storm goads Ashe in and more illegal double teaming happens. Linnell manages a shoulderblock but Morales goes to his eyes. Storm in for more cheating as he covers the mouth and nose before fish hooking the corners of the mouth. Linnell gets slightly fired up and hits some strikes. Not enough energy from Linnell for me there. Morales hits a backbreaker for 2. Morales drops a running knee for 2. Heels go for a double suplex but Ashes runs into a block it and Linnell hits a double DDT. Linnell forward rolls for the tag. Ashe cleans house and clearly shows more personality. SPELLBINDER on Storm gets 2. Morales made the save there. Then he kills Ashe with the running STO. Linnell comes back in and gets planted with the double Emerald Fusion. Spud and Tony Sefton are out here so Morales gets distracted. Storm grabs a chain to take advantage of the distraction but Dragon Phoenix runs in and hits a Shellshock on Storm allowing the faces to get the pin. **1/2. Really solid formula tag match but the opening 10 minutes I could have lived without. The storyline stuff is nice and looks to be setting up matches down the road.

Sidenote – IPW could really use some better lighting. Having said that it took ROH forever to realise that and many US Indies still haven’t got it.

UK Dream Team v Chav Army

The UK Dream Team is Jonny Storm and Jody Fleisch. The Chav Army is a great gimmick. Battalion and Flaming Red are the team tonight and they come out to that DAMN Crazy Frog tune. Burberry and hoodies ahoy! Red calls for “some back up” and out comes “Pukka” Darren Burridge. His entrance music is a brilliant rip off of “Girls and Boys” by Blur. “I am so pukka and you are a slag”. Best. Entrance music. Ever. He’s going to manage the Chav Army tonight. “Kill the chavs” – Orpington. “Shat it, yoo slaaaaag” – Burridge. HAHAHA.

Storm dominates Red to start with. Jody and Jonny team up on Red and double dropkick him. More dropkicks for Battalion and a pair of superkicks. Storm and Fleisch wipe out everyone with a pair of slingshot hilos. Chavs cheat to isolate Storm. Fantastic Four on Red though and an Enzuigiri. Red goes up but he’s groggy and gets Japanese armdragged off the top. Fleisch with a springboard dropkick. Red gets caught with a kick to the head as he’s charging and he’s dropkicked in the corner for good measure. Dropsault scores too as Landau struggles to get his gushing praise of Fleisch out. Chavs cheat and choke Jody to get back in charge. Battalion hits a scary looking belly to belly. Fleisch looked to land on his neck but that might just be the camera angle we had. Slingshot legdrop from Red gets 2. Rope ride with follow through from Red and Fleisch is selling that like death. Jody tries to fight back but gets thumbed in the eye. Red hits a back elbow for 2. Dropkick scores and Red goes to a chinlock. Fleisch clocks Red with a nice Enzuigiri. Both men down and a double clothesline has the same result. Hot tag to Storm and he cleans house. 619 on Battalion gets 2. Ref Chris Hatch gets bumped thanks to Battalion dragging him in the way of Storm coming off the top. WONDERWHIRL on Battalion but the ref is out so there’s no pin. Burridge throws a bat to Red but Storm catches it and nails Red. Burridge pulls out the ref but Storm hits him with a plancha. 720 DDT has it finished but the ref is too busy watching the fight on the floor. Something else goes wrong and Fleisch has a roll up. Ref is still down and the Chav Army try to get in there. Burridge runs in with a low blow. How is the ref missing this? Battalion pins Fleisch. Good lord, that was a mugging. *3/4. It was ok until all the interference kicked in then it became very hard to explain how the ref was missing everything.

Battle Royal

#1 is Spud. #2 is Morales. Spud hits his multiple rotation whirl headscissors. #3 is Ashley Reed. He instantly turns on Spud, which comes as no shock. #4 is Dragon Phoenix. He’s in support of his opponent from earlier. #5 is Jack Storm. Phoenix cuts him off. #6 is Tony Sefton. These guys are coming in here so fast. Sefton KILLS Reed with a lariat. #7 is Bandit from the Chav Army. #8 is Battalion. #9 is Chasyn Rance? He puts Battalion out. #10 is Jake. Too many people in there. #11 is Ashe. Morales throws Phoenix out for fucking up his night earlier. The ring is just way too full. I lose track of the new entries as a result. Several of them I’ve never heard of. Justin Richards lasts about 2 seconds in there. Kristian Linnell doesn’t last long either. Flaming Red is selling his arm as he joins the fray. Aviv Mayaan is in there. He looks determined. Simmons is in there as well and he’s another favourite. Still WAY too many people in there. Simmons sorts that out a bit by dumping Red out. James Tighe is out there as well as Morales gets chucked out. Spud is gone too thanks to Tighe. It’s starts clearing out a bit and people have stopped coming in. Simmons gets thrown out.

FINAL FOUR – That Rance guy. I’ll have to find out his name. Jack Storm, Aviv Mayaan and James Tighe. Chasyn and Aviv try to double team but Chasyn fucks up his leap off Mayaan’s back. Chasyn kicks Tighe over the ropes with an Enzuigiri but an attempted follow up gets him backdropped out. Mayaan manages to survive a 2 on 1. Tighe tries to skin the cat but Mayaan dropkicks him in the chest. Tighe is gone. Mayaan hits a missile dropkick on Storm and then suckers him in to backdrop him to the floor. Mayaan wins the battle royal. *1/4. I’m not overly fond of battle royals when they seem so random and unplanned but this one was particularly bad.

IPW:UK title – Martin Stone v Stevie Douglas

Stone is the winner of “Best of British Heavyweights” where he beat Zebra Kid. He takes offence at Aviv Mayaan still being out here. Stone asks Mayaan to join this match and have a 3-way dance. Stevie Douglas is the Best of British Fliers.

Martin Stone v Stevie Douglas v Aviv Mayaan

Winner goes home with the IPW title. All the managers are kicked out from ringside. Everyone bar Mayaan is pissed off about that. Stone gets picked on because he’s the bigger man. Douglas and Mayaan miss at speed. Stone trips Mayaan up and stomps him. Douglas hits him with a flying clothesline after failing with some shoulderblocks. The smaller guys team up so Stone clotheslines both of them. Snap suplex on Douglas gets 2. Mayaan clocks Stone with an Enzuigiri for 2. Douglas hits the old Alabama Slammer on Mayaan. Then he hits a rolling inverted DDT for 2. Stone chops him in the back and hits a spinebuster slam for 2. Whirl sideslam on Mayaan gets 2. Douglas kills Stone with the ANGELS WINGS and that leaves everyone knocked out. Douglas is up first and he hurls Stone outside to pick on Mayaan but the Welshman catches him with a rana. Mayaan goes for another but Douglas blocks and throws Mayaan out of the ring onto Stone. Slingshot plancha from Douglas puts all three guys down on the floor. Douglas whips Mayaan into several rows of chairs. Stone throws Douglas through a few rows himself. Now, who’s going to pick all those up? Back inside Mayaan wipes out Stone with a flying rana. Douglas is still down so Mayaan goes for a crossbody only to get caught and fallaway slammed. Douglas is back in and he wails on Stone. Double clothesline and everyone is down again. Mayaan escapes a brainbuster and hits one of his own on Douglas for 2. Stone made the save. Stone DDT’s Mayaan off the ropes. He calls that London Bridge. That gets 2 with Douglas saving. Then he superkicks Stone and Mayaan is back up for a tornado DDT. Mayaan takes the win and IPW:UK title. He sure didn’t sell that London Bridge for long, huh? ***1/2. Much like the opening match it was a fun action packed affair. It’s almost like great bookends for the show. I could have done with it going longer to allow some improved selling of the bigger moments in the match. That and it kind of lacked a little something in terms of scope for a first title match. No belt either.

POST MATCH Martin Stone takes a cricket bat to the ribs of the new champ and then books himself into a match against Mayaan tomorrow night. He points out that managers will NOT be barred from ringside. “Tomorrow night Aviv, you’re fucking dead”.

DVD Extra

As a bonus we have a bout between Skye and Shadow from the Weekend of Champions convention card.

Skye v Shadow

Skye has stolen White Tiger’s entrance music. Skye looks a lot like Ashley Reed’s valet Donna. They switch on arm ringers and generally look lost when attempting anything more advanced. Shadow claps her hands and claims Skye slapped her. She does it again and Stevie Douglas complains to the referee. Third time Skye actually slaps her so she bails and hides behind Stevie. Skye chases but Stevie just forearms her and throws her back inside. Shadow actually connects pretty hard on an elbow of her own. She misses in the corner and a lousy cover gets 2. Shadow manages a couple of awful kicks. Skye hits a rough crossbody but Stevie complains about something or other and Shadow hits a decent spinebuster and an even better kick to the back of the neck for 2. Shadow misses something lame off the top. Skye hits a fisherman suplex but Stevie pulls the bridge out. Skye chases Stevie around the ring, which makes no sense because Stevie levelled her with one elbow earlier. Surely he shouldn’t be that concerned. Stevie cheats right in front of the ref and hits a few more elbows. Shadow gets a roll up for 3 and mercifully ends this. DUD. Bad match.

Overall Show Thoughts –

This was a much better overall show than the opening Extreme Measures DVD. Unfortunately it didn’t have that awesome Super Dragon v Jonny Storm match on it but you can’t have it all. It was apparent that the undercard had been worked on. There appeared to be several nicely established storylines and interactions between those involved. It seems that Dan has generally dropped some of the larger names (Super Dragon, Colt Cabana, Robbie Brookside) in favour of putting on the best show he can with the talent available. The downside is the lack of that one stellar match but the upside is a more fluid card. Every match seemed to have something interesting going on (bar the battle royal) and as a result I enjoyed most of the card. This is far more promising in terms of the way the promotion is going to work. It’s clear some of the characters have gotten over well with the crowd. Great to see Harry Smith in a UK ring as well. He looked to be an outstanding talent and I hope I get the chance to see more of him over here. There’s a lot of nice ideas at play and it’s good that some of the talent involved isn’t big anywhere else. I’m thinking the likes of Martin Stone and Stevie Douglas. Mayaan, of course, is a name with the FWA but not a name you’d instantly associate with it like say Alex Shane or Jonny Storm.

In short there are still problems to iron out. If they’re ever to be taken seriously they’ll have to work at their set up and production values in general. Stuff like the lights, sound levels and camera work could be better. It’s the kind of stuff good video production could clear up. Compare it to 3CW’s DVD product for example. Or the FWA. Or even IWW. Production wise they’re better. The actual booking could be ok though. It’s hard to tell where the company is going from just one show but much like I was talking about after seeing Extreme Measures this has given me far more reason to come back. There’s more stuff that I know will happen down the line that I want to see. First off the Stone-Mayaan match the following night, which could be good given Mayaan’s rib injuries. Be interesting to see how they tell that story. Plus the continuation of the tag teams and some of the angles that will surely result from that. Storm and Morales are an intriguing team. I’d love to see more from them. Same with the Chav Army who could get over huge. Thumbs just about up for this DVD then and head over to www.ipwuk.com to check out this and other DVD products. It’s one of the better UK promotions running today.

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