Sunday, September 14, 2014

Strip Match

How do you top a match where your biggest bad-ass gets his bad ass handed to him by the new guy? If you're UCW-Wrestling, you immediately pit your top babyfaces together for a strip match [#369]! Axel and Aron are also two of the closest matched fighters at UCW in terms of physique and wrestling knowhow. The name of the game is Who Can Force His Opponent to Go the Full Monty? Truth be told, you should know that in this match major areas of the monty are unavailable to the camera's eye. Still, as angles go, this one is hard to beat, you have to admit.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Johnny O

Krush fanatics, rejoice! Krush is back in action in a brand new space on a brand new mat. What's more, he faces his old nemesis of three years ago, the awe-inspiring Johnny O, who brings thick leg muscles, iron-hard biceps, and he-man pecs to Krushco's time-honored tradition of unadulterated submission wrestling. It's great to see Krush, in his best shape in years, having to sweat it against a wrestler equal to him in size and skill. 

And in terms of picture resolution and tight editing, this 20-minute contest is the company's best looking video to date. The space is open and brightly lit, and the camera tripod has been swapped for a real live cameraman, who follows every twist and grunt of the contest.

Krush nearly knocks Johnny O out with a choke in the first three minutes, but then he thinks better of it, deeming his time better spent in jabbing his knee repeatedly to O's kidney. Two minutes later, though, Johnny shows Krush that he's not the pushover he was in 2011, and the action is give-and-take for the next fifteen minutes, with the ultimate victor taking two falls out of three.

Johnny not only looks good (the definition of "handsome brute") but also supplies cogent vocals in the video's grueling third act. It opens as Johnny O, seething over something or other, clamps Krush in a headlock that's pure-P punishment. We all know Krush won't take this lying down, but by this point we also know Johnny's got the nuts to do just about anything he wants to.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Aron vs Casey

Movimus introduced newcomer Casey Callaghan yesterday in its latest video for download. Casey squares off against Aron Stokes, in his fourth appearance with the company. The two wrestlers take their wrestling serious and straight--no sugar or milk--speaking not a word to each other through the 33-minute ordeal and betraying no hint of emotion (anger nor pleasure) during the contest. 

I prefer strong silent types, and heaven knows I like guys who are all-business on the mat (or in the ring), but really could it hurt for Aron and Casey to have at least a little fun here? Both appear underwhelmed at the prospect of wrestling the other. Who knows? Maybe they lost some kind of bet. Or maybe they're just not the types to display their enthusiasm. But can they wrestle? Hell yeah.

Casey makes a strong and aggressive start against Aron, the larger and more experienced of the two. Tattooed and bleached circa-1999 blond, the new guy could pass for a crime lord's henchman in an old Chuck Norris movie. It's a hot, smart look, and Casey has the grappling chops to go with it. He is well pitted against Aron, whose wrestling savvy is unquestionable.

The showdown, which goes for four falls, each almost a mechanical reproduction of the last, suffers slightly from a lack of momentum. But that's how it goes in real wrestling. It's a sport, not a Batman movie. There's plenty of give and take, yet one wrestler consistently dominates. Both men's determination and wrestling ability impress me through it all. Neither is willing to just roll over and play dead for the other, and the winner gets nothing without a long, hard struggle.

Thursday, September 11, 2014


Bruce Ballard smiles a lot, and for once you won't hear me complain about it. It's a devastating smile on a handsome, boy-next-door* face, presiding over a buff, smooth body that makes me break into sweats. Bob at Rock Hard Wrestling predicts the company's new find will be a gigantic hit with the fans, and I predict that Bob is right on the money. Not for nothing has RHW gained the reputation for introducing the best looking wrestlers in the underground scene**.

Bob characterizes the debut as a Greek god versus backyard brawler fight. Bruce, 5'9", 190#, is the Greek god. Tyson Matthews, 5'11", 175#, in his second match at RHW, is the brawler. Tyson's easy on the eyes too, but Bruce is (to cite the movie Neighbors) "like something a gay guy designed in a laboratory!" And if the intent was to cow the pretty recruit with a tough first challenger like Tyson, nobody told Bruce he should be scared.

Bruce wrestles. And he's as tough as the man facing him across the ring. And he talks smack fluently, almost immediately deriding Tyson for hitting "like a bitch." This is no two-round double-squash-job for the rookie. He and Tyson take a full three rounds to finish their business. They work each other close to the mat, along with showy slams and carries. If Bruce can be faulted for sometimes underselling Tyson's moves at the outset, he more than compensates for this flaw as the fight proceeds. 

God damn if Rock Hard hasn't gone and done it again! Bruce Ballard is a baby-faced hunk and a devilish scrapper in one sturdily built package. I'm impressed, and I'm hoping RHW won't keep me waiting long before it brings Bruce back--against Austin Cooper or Josh Steel would be nice--or a rematch against Tyson Matthews, to wash the taste of grudge out of both wrestlers' mouths.

* "Next door," I wish.  It would be enough to run into this guy on vacation.
** Austin Cooper, Jake Jenkins, Josh Steel, Alex Waters, I could go on.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Why God Made Rec Rooms, Blue Jeans, and High-End Speaker Systems

Don't know anything about this YouTube match except what the description tells me, but my imagination can work with this, filling in the gaps and fleshing out a nostalgic backstory about the fleeting pleasures of youth. A roughhouse fight with a friend is one memory every boy ought to carry with him to the grave.
No there ain't no rest for the wicked
Until we close our eyes for good
--Cage the Elephant's "Ain't No Rest for the Wicked" (2008)

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

The Annihilation of Quinn?

Nobody sells other wrestlers' holds more passionately than Quinn Harper, and when he's dishing out the pain he makes it substantive enough that even the most poker-faced performer yowls like King Lear in the last act. In his latest match at UCW-Wrestling [#368], he finds out what it's like to be on the hurting end of aggression as strident as his own. For the first half of the match, the Spartan he-man Marcus Ares almost literally tears The Mighty Quinn a new asshole.

This is some of the roughest and hottest action we've yet seen from Marcus. Nothing in his run-ins with Axel and Aron prepares us for the level of mayhem on display in this solid 31-minute smash-up against one of the most devious and dangerous bad boys on the UCW roll. For sixteen minutes he doesn't let Quinn come up for air.

The competition here is all the sharper since Quinn Harper looks like a shoo-in for the championship belt, and this match is supposedly the first onramp to "the road to the championship" after Eli Black's bizarre and cataclysmic championship defense in July. (The twists and turns these past few months have flown right over my head, but somehow the belt is currently worn pro tempore by UCW founder BodySlam--to whom Marcus Ares bears a resemblance, I think, especially those mischievous eyes.) 

The match has a few of the typical features of UCW matches of the past, but there's a lot of innovation going on here too. Marcus starts things off by shoving Quinn to the mat, very nearly splattering him against the concrete wall (that comes later--and not just once--see the fourth photo above). Using his height and weight advantage, he continues to have his way with the blond firebrand for, as I said, well over half the match. 

Will it be annihilation or victory snatched from the jaws of defeat for Quinn Harper? This could be a grand upset in a year already brimming with UCW surprises, or Quinn may catch a break and get his mojo back for an epic finish and some sweet vengeance against the overbearing rookie.  This is UCW, men, so anything could happen.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Brutes: The Next Generations

Why, you might ask, is Jonny Firestorm not a brute? I've given it some thought. Opinions will vary, but I see Jonny's bent for destruction as a striking contrast to his regular one-of-the-guys demeanor. Nothing about his physical bearing prepares his victims for what's about to hit them slam-bam in the nuts. The game is over before the average jobber realizes Jonny is a palpable threat. He's a "stealth heel" without a gram of conscience, but he's no brute.

Kids Leopard and Vicious are too debonaire to be brutes. Villainous, yes. Sadistic, yes. But brutes, no. They are the Moriarty, Ernst Blofeld, Ming the Merciless, Hannibal Lecter of wrestling. If you're looking for the great brutes of myth and fiction, you must turn to the Minotaur, King Kong, Butch from the Our Gang comedies, Bluto, Oddjob, Frank Booth, and Bane.

Below are eight more wrestlers you don't stand a chance against. You want these menacing guys on your side, you have no other choice but to want these guys on your side, so check your ego at ringside and prepare to cower, grovel, kneel, melt, or play dead. They are steak and you are jelly. It's just the way it is. Resistance is futile. Face your doom like a man.

Joe Robbins fighting Tyrell Tomsen to decide once and for all who's the bigger brute

Cage Thunder unmasking Goldenrod

Micro-brute Kid Karisma rips Ray Naylor to shreds 

Dev Michaels topping Kid Karisma

Big, bad, beautiful brute Lane Hartley softening up Brad Barnes

Looming over cutie Kip Sorell, Guido Genatto may well be the Second Coming of the true (black-and-)blue brute

The eponymous Brute Baynard pounding Nate Walsh

All these shots belong to BG East and are available for viewing at The Arena

Sunday, September 7, 2014


Brutes. I can't define them, but I know them when I see them. They're what normally come after adjectives like "big," "bad," and "hairy" and in front of verbs like "squash," "annihilate," "pulverize," "humiliate," and "destroy," though they are not necessarily big or bad or hairy and they don't always win.

They cannot be equated with "heels," though they might well constitute a subset of heels--for instance, Kid Vicious and Kid Leopard are heels, but not brutes, and Brooklyn Bodywrecker and Brook Stetson are brutes even when they're sympathetic contenders. Brutes are the opposite of "suave," "urbane," "subtle," "polished," and "glib." In one way or another, they are physically imposing--like a mountain or a tornado or a barracuda.

They are bulls in the china shop, destructive by nature rather than by intent. Something about them immediately sets off the fight-or-flight response. They strike fear in the heart even before the match begins. They are sexy and frightening at the same time and the lust and the fear are inextricably wound together. They are forces of nature, with special emphasis on "force."

Brooklyn Bodywrecker squashing Devon Cade 

Donnie Russo

Mikey Vee 

Joe Mazetti AND Cole Cassidy in a Brute-vs-Brute showdown

Mr. Big (no explanation needed) 

Bulldog Barzini humiliating Denny Cartier

Brook Stetson showing Mitch Colby who's boss

All these shots belong to BG East and are available for viewing at The Arena

To be continued tomorrow ...


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