Friday, October 8, 2010

Ringkid at Ringside: Exclusive Interview

Ringkid, 5'6", 140#, is a wrestler from Brighton, active in the underground scene, notably in matches for Bulldog Wrestling UK and BG East.  He has squared off against the likes of Mike Martin, Andy Flyer, Nick Archer, and, most recently, Brad Flash.  He's played both sides of the heel-jobber divide, and he recently agreed to give us a little insight to what it's like to be him.




Joe:  Thanks for saying yes to the interview, RK.  As an outsider to wrestling, I appreciate the opportunity to get some sense of what makes guys who actually do what I usually just fantasize about ... what makes guys like you ... tick.  So how did you get involved in underground wrestling?

Ringkid:  Well, I've always been a fan of pro wrestling, and when I got my first computer, I started to make contact with other fans.  I wanted to become more involved, other than just watching, so I got involved with Bulldog.  I did some training, and the rest is history.  I also do private matches, but that's a personal thing.  (Laughs.)

Joe:  Has the wrestling scene changed a lot in the UK since that time?

Ringkid:  Yeah, it has.  Old-fashioned Brit pro--with rounds and the best of three falls--has almost died out, I'm sorry to say.  We tend to have promotions which follow the one-fall USA format, with no rounds now.

Joe:  I've seen those three-round matches on YouTube.  They were great.  The breaks in the action fueled the suspense, it seems to me, and it gave the cameras time to catch the wrestlers' bodies in repose.

Ringkid:  I also think that the wrestler characters have changed.  Much less distinction between heel and face than there used to be.

Joe:  That I don't know how I feel about.  I kinda miss a strong distinction between the two.  So what do you have to say to guys thinking about getting involved in underground wrestling now?

Ringkid:  Safety first.  Work with people who know what they are doing.  Have fun with it.  Don't take it too seriously.  And remember, if you are doing video work, make it entertaining for the fans.

Joe:  So what were your earliest wrestling fantasies like?

Ringkid:  I used to love to see heel-versus-face matches.  The older, more experienced heel working over a younger face was always a great match to see.  I also love to watch two faces in a really entertaining technical match ... getting all sweaty together.  (Laughs.)

Joe:  Right.  Sweat is the lube of champs.  Have your fantasies changed now that you have a pretty impressive string of matches under your belt?

Ringkid:  No.  I still think the same fantasies, even though I've been wrestling for Bulldog for a number of years.

Joe:  So speaking of fantasies, what gear works best for you?  And by "works" I'm really asking what it is that turns you on?

Ringkid:  I love the classic pro boots along with trunks or Speedo look.  Also, masks can be great, especially if the wrestler is de-masked during the match.  Recently I came to like a face in trunks or Speedo with bare feet too.

Joe:  What in particular appeals to you about wrestling?

Ringkid:  The body contact.  The holds.  I love submission finishes.  Guess I like to see one guy try and dominate another.

Joe:  What about it do you like the least?

Ringkid:  Dishonesty.  Guys who don't respect their opponents.

Joe:  Do you do anything special to get yourself in the right frame of mind for a match?

Ringkid:  Nothing really.  I just chat with the opponent and work through the routine with him.  A good warmup is important before getting into the ring.

Joe:  You have wrestled as a jobber and as a heel.  Which is more fun?

Ringkid:  When I started, I loved to play the jobber.  Selling the holds and moves well gave me a real sense of achievement.  After all, it's the jobber who makes the heel look good.  Now I like to mix-and-match it.  I love to be the heel, as you get to try different holds.  And use dirty tricks ... I love them in a match.

Joe:  It was always the heels for me.  I liked the looks of a cute babyface, but I always wanted to be the heel.  What's your favorite hold?

Ringkid:  I love back weakeners and submission finishers.  So, Boston crab ... over-the-knee, over-the-shoulder backbreaker ... that sort of thing.


Joe:  Who are your favorite wrestlers?

Ringkid:  So many.  From old-school Brit pro, I used to love Kid McCoy, Ritchie Brooks, Danny Collins, and Robbie Brookside.  Today I love to watch Jonny Firestorm and Cameron Mathews.  I wish BG East would put them in a ring together.  I think my favorite wrestler today is Brad Flash.  I have met him and been lucky enough to get some training in with him.  He's absolutely ace.  He knows his business.  He is a real professional and a real gentleman ... a great trainer, too, and I really enjoyed working with him on Bulldog's latest venture, a Brit pro series DVD called Bulldog Flash.

Joe:  Brad Flash and you?  Awesome.  We'll keep an eye out for that one.  What makes a heel a good heel?

Ringkid:  Respect for the opponent.  He also needs to be good at verbal skills, a good actor to work a crowd.  He needs to know his stuff.  He needs to like getting into his persona.

Joe:  How about jobbers?  What counts as good jobbing?

Ringkid:  Respecting their opponents.  And a jobber has to be a good actor, too ... selling the holds.  He needs to run with the flow.  A good jobber who can really suffer can make a match.

Joe:  So what's your take on mainstream professional wrestling--stuff like WWE and Ring of Honor?

Ringkid:  I'm not really a follower.  I admire the guys for their craft and their wrestling expertise, but I don't really watch it.

Joe:  How about mixed martial arts--or other combat sports like boxing?

Ringkid:  Not really.  It's pro wrestling for me.

Joe:  All the way, huh?  Do you wrestle gay or bi or straight guys?  Any differences?

Ringkid:  Dunno.   I have wrestled many guys, and I guess as long as they are into pro, we are gonna have fun.  The important thing is the mindset.  I hate it when someone asks me, "How many matches you won?  Or lost?"  Hello, that's not pro.  Safety and technical ability.

Joe:  Are there any celebrities you'd like to wrestle ... or to watch as they wrestle each other?

Ringkid:  Wow.  Too many to think of.

Joe:  Are there any wrestling web sites you follow?

Ringkid:  Apart from Bulldog and your own site.  (Laughs.)

Joe:  Didn't mean to fish.  (Laughs.)

Ringkid:  There are too many to mention.  What I would say is a big thank you to those that help keep the wrestling spirit and the wrestling fantasies alive. I think BG East deserves a mention here.  I know [Kid Leopard] works tirelessly to produce top quality products, and I know he is passionate about the sport.  Good on him!



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