Shiny Objects

Axel vs Chase Michaels, Match 516 (UCW)

I turn my nose up at a lot of silly angles in wrestling, but wrestling in oil is not one of them. Decades ago, when I was a schoolboy, an issue of National Geographic depicted two Greek wrestlers covered in olive oil. The article had something to do with retracing the routes of Alexander the Great's military excursions and also featured a memorable full-color illustration of young Alexander storming a beach. It sold me on ancient history.

There was also an episode of Have Gun Will Travel, a TV series my parents liked, so I watched it too, in which the protagonist Paladin oils up his torso to fight a renegade Indian. Richard Boone, the star, was not much in the way of looks, but it's amazing what a little shine will do for a man. There were also the oiled up bodies I saw in Hercules movies and the covers of muscle magazines. I never outgrew the fascination.

One of the challenges of oil wrestling is, of course, losing one's grip on the opponent. A lot of the erotic oil wrestling I've seen elsewhere has been marred--though negligibly for me, an avid supporter of even bad oil wrestling (if there is such a thing)--by the fact that the combatants can do little more than roll over each other, never succeeding to maintain a hold for more than a fraction of a second. Also, oil limits the cameraman's ability to catch the tight close-ups I so enjoy.

UCW has ventured into oil wrestling before, successfully too, but never more brilliantly than in Match 516, between two former champions, Chase and Axel. The two manage not only to lock each other into scissors, arm bars, and chokes but also to grab balls and punch abs in the time-honored UCW tradition. Once the action heats up, about five minutes into the 30-minute video, every minute provides at least one boner moment. And the camera draws in for some impressively close shots of the agonies these two inflict on each other.

There's dramatic conflict here too, if you wish to view it that way. There's a bad guy--Chase in black jockstrap and Mephisto goatee--and a good guy--Axel in a white strap, legendary foe of bullies everywhere. This match holds up as stiff competition apart from the oil and jockstraps angles. With these elements, though, the match is everything. It puts me in mind of a sadomasochistic fantasy I had better just keep to myself for now. Match 516 is sick in all the right ways. I want more.


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