Friday, August 12, 2016

Them Summer Days

Axel vs Eli Black, #482 Outdoor Pool Brawl (UCW)

I love this. There's really nothing to analyze about UCW's latest release or my reasons for loving it. What's not to love? There's Axel. I love him. There's Eli. I love him. They're soaking wet and wrestling. It's fun. The photography is fresh and clear. I love it. It's summer, a hot summer here in the American South, and I need to be in this pool with these guys. If I were young and fit, I'd be wrestling too. As things are, the boys can wrestle around me and my pineapple mojito.

The championship belt is at stake, which is why we have a referee on hand. UCW rules allow a title defense anytime, anywhere. After the debacle several years ago, when challengers were attacking a steady stream of rapidly changing champs, no sooner crowned than deposed ... attacking without notice--even in the middle of night ... in bed! ... an addendum to the rules was made, requiring the presence of a ref for title matches. So there he is, carefully watching in case there's a new champ at UCW.

But championship aside, the real joy of this match is the water and hell-raising. Axel and Eli never looked better. This is not their first match. It's their eighth ... or ninth (those Black Dragon appearances throw my count off) ... in singles and team competition. They are well matched. Departing from the official storyline, their rivalry has been a bonding experience, it seems to me. They seem more at ease wrestling each other than anyone else. I suspect they have taught each other a lot over the last three years. They would probably deny it, of course.

The official narrative is different, mortal enemies fighting to the death. All that, which is great ... I love it. But the happy sunlight, the Nemo-colored above-ground wading pool, and the neatly trimmed lawn (Axel's doing) undercut the idea of mortal struggle. It just looks like fun to me. Even just watching it is fun. In fact, I'm ready to watch it again.

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