Sunday, November 18, 2012

Rookie Riot!

BodySlam and Axel took Michael Hannigan under their wing after Twisted Torment assaulted the angel-faced youth in the park in what is now a UCW classic beatdown/beatoff video [214]. Michael, whose cherubic face on occasion brims with mischief at the mere mention of a fight, has earnestly applied himself to the regimen Axel set for him, determined to prove himself worthy of a place in the UCW ranks.  For the past three months, however, Twisted has been eyeing the new trainee like Sylvester eyes Tweety. 

Thinking perhaps that Twisted needed a distraction from this obsession, UCW assigned him a trainee of his own. CJ Devastation, one of the year's most promising recruits, vigorously displayed his natural talent for combat in his recent match against Twisted [234] and has plainly declared his heel aspirations in his choice of name. It was no surprise, then, that CJ would enthusiastically subject himself to Twisted's evil influence. But not for a second have Twisted and Michael stopped gunning for each other, separated only by BodySlam's insistence that Michael is as yet unprepared to square off against a wrestler as devious, malevolent, and potentially crippling as Twisted.

In UCW's latest release, Devastation, 5'9", 163#, and Hannigan, 6'1", 160#, go toe to toe in a grueling 30-minute match, in which the rookies gleefully wreak havoc on each other. Clearly, CJ is now Twisted's devout disciple and surrogate in this match, while Twisted himself is constrained to keep to the sidelines under the threat of a thousand-dollar fine. CJ mirrors his sadistic trainer's relish for brute force and shares his dislike of his opponent, who is, as he sees it, the bosses' pampered pet. When Michael unleashes his fury on CJ, he makes a point of locking eyes with Twisted, frustratingly confined to a chair at the edge of the mat.

This match has surprises, and I don't want to give any of them away. Michael and CJ epitomize UCW's penchant for "regular-guy" antagonists, young, working-class, fit, but un-airbrushed guys who like the sensation of knuckles colliding with sweaty muscle. These are not the guys we usually see in gay underground wrestling. These are neighborhood guys, guys who build their bodies working hard for a weekly wage, guys you discreetly watch rowdily dive-bombing at the community swimming pool. This is a good fight, even a little bit awesome, with a wow-pow finish that announces that both these young wrestlers have earned their places at UCW ... and are probably not finished with each other yet!

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